Curtis Blaydes will be gunning for a third straight victory in the octagon when he takes on former UFC heavyweight champion Junior dos Santos on Saturday in the main event at UFC Fight Night 166 as a -260 favourite on the UFC odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.
Blaydes is coming off a decisive second-round TKO victory over Shamil Abdurakhimov at UFC 242, and now takes a 12-2 professional MMA record into Saturday night’s bout at PNC Arena in Raleigh, North Carolina.
Blaydes has regained his form since suffering a stunning TKO loss to Francis Ngannou just 45 seconds into their long awaited rematch at UFC Fight Night 141 as a -235 favourite at sports betting sites. The 28-year-old American followed up with a three-round unanimous decision win over Justin Willis at UFC Fight Night 148. Blaydes has finished opponents with regularity with nine of his 12 career wins coming by knockout, but has yet to see action in championship rounds since joining the UFC in 2016.
While Blaydes is enjoying a solid rebound, dos Santos has plenty of work to do to overcome his recent first-round defeat at the hands of Ngannou. He enters the octagon on Saturday as a lengthy +200 underdog on the UFC Raleigh odds.
Dos Santos lasted just 71 seconds against Ngannou as a +180 wager in their clash at UFC on ESPN 3, ending a three-fight win streak. The 35-year-old Brazilian earned Fight of the Night honours while recording a second-record TKO win over Derrick Lewis as -225 chalk at UFC Fight Night 146, and also ended Tai Tuivasa’s night in the second round in their tilt at UFC Fight Night 142.
The former champion finished opponents in the first round on 11 occasions during his pro MMA career. He also takes plenty of championship round experience into Saturday’s clash, claiming unanimous decision wins in each of his past three fights that went a full five rounds.
Elsewhere on the UFC Raleigh odds, Rafael dos Anjos looks to record just his second win in five outings as he takes on Michael Chiesa as strong -265 chalk in a clash of welterweights.
The former UFC lightweight champion claimed victory in each of his first three fights as a welterweight, but has suffered five-round unanimous decision losses in three of his past four contests. Pegged as a +205 underdog for Saturday, Chiesa is undefeated in two outings since moving to the lightweight division, capped by a unanimous decision win over Diego Sanchez at UFC 239.
As well, Angela Hill battles fellow women’s strawweight Hannah Cifers as -185 chalk on Saturday, while flyweight Alex Perez takes on Jordan Espinosa as a -265 wager.