Jones, Nunes heavy betting favourites on UFC 239 odds

UFC-Jon-Jones-stands-during-press-conference

Jon Jones poses during a UFC weigh-in. (Erik Verduzco/Las Vegas Review-Journal via AP)

Jon Jones will put his light heavyweight title on the line on Saturday when he takes on No. 2 contender Thiago Santos in the main event at UFC 239 as a heavy -600 favourite on the UFC odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark.com.

Jones returns to action for the second time since reclaiming his crown in a highly anticipated rematch with archrival Alexander Gustafsson at UFC 232. “Bones” followed up with a unanimous decision over Anthony Smith last time out, paying out on -700 odds, and improving his pro MMA record to 24-1 going into Saturday night’s bout.

One of the most successful fighters in UFC history, Jones successfully defended the UFC light heavyweight title on a record eight occasions during a four-year run as champion that ended in 2015. Jones fought just three times in the four years prior to defeating Gustafsson, but enters the octagon for a third time in seven months on Saturday.

Santos rides a four-fight win streak to his first-ever title shot pegged as a lengthy +400 underdog. The 35-year-old Brazilian is coming off a third-round TKO win over Jan Blachowicz at UFC Fight Night 145 as a -135 wager, marking his third straight finish, while garnering him a second straight Performance of the Night bonus.

Overall, Santos is 8-1 over his past nine fights, with five of those victories coming inside two rounds. However, “The Sledgehammer” has yet to see a fight go beyond three rounds, a trend that comes in stark contrast to Jones, who has seen five of his past seven fights go a full five rounds.

In Saturday night’s co-main event, the UFC women’s bantamweight title will be at stake as champion Amanda Nunes battles former champion Holly Holm as a -370 betting favourite.

“The Lioness” has shown steady progress since suffering her lone defeat in UFC action to Cat Zingano five years ago. Nunes has posted eight straight wins since, capped by a stunning first-round knockout of Cris Cyborg at UFC 232 as a +160 underdog, claiming the UFC women’s featherweight crown and her third Performance of the Night bonus since winning the UFC women’s bantamweight title.

Listed as a +280 underdog, Holm has been idle since earning a unanimous decision win over Megan Anderson in featherweight action at UFC 225 as a -185 wager, and has failed to win consecutive fights since losing the UFC women’s bantamweight title to Ronda Rousey in 2015.

Elsewhere on the UFC 239 odds, Ben Askren battles fellow welterweight Jorge Masvidal as a -250 favourite, while Luke Rockhold makes his light heavyweight debut against Blachowicz as -185 chalk.

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