Middleweight Champion Significantly Favored To Retain
It’s business as usual for UFC Middleweight Champion Israel Adesanya. The kickboxer-turned-mixed martial artist is a 4-1 favorite to defend his title against Jared Cannonier. Despite Cannonier’s prowess as a puncher, Adesanya has seen it all. He’ll look to cash as heavy chalk on the UFC betting lines though there are better ways to bet this fight.
Adesanya Is Nigh-Invincible
With his current UFC odds, bettors consider Adesanya as a bulletproof fighter. After all, he hasn’t lost at 185 pounds and has made most of his fights look easy. Aptly nicknamed “The Last Stylebender,” Adesanya makes it difficult for his opponents with his 80-inch reach parlayed with his advanced kickboxing acumen.
Adesanya may have shown weakness in the grappling department, but no fighter outside of Jan Blachowicz has been able to use it against him. The 32-year-old has a 77% takedown defense even if he’s surrendered three or more takedowns in his last three fights.
Even if Cannonier will take Adesanya down, he will be hard-pressed to keep him there. And in the striking department, Adesanya can put himself in a spot where his opponents literally can’t touch him. His defensive approach may elicit boos from the crowd, but folks betting online can better trust their money on a fighter like him.
Cannonier’s Line Is Too Long
At +300, oddsmakers are implying that Cannonier has less than a 25% chance of beating Adesanya. That’s alright. Cannonier has been a sizable underdog in the past. He knocked out both Jack Hermansson and David Branch the last time he was upwards of a 2-1 underdog, which he is at now.
Cannonier could be the hardest hitter in the division. This is a man that has knocked out both heavyweights and light heavyweights. He is fast and explosive and has can finish fights whether he’s standing or on the ground – via some ground-and-pound as Derek Brunson found out.
The 38-year-old is also at his peak. Traditionally, this may not seem like it but many UFC fighters have fought at their best at this “advanced” age. The oddsmakers underestimate Cannonier here. His line implies that he has a smaller chance than Paulo Costa and Kelvin Gastelum against “Izzy”. That’s dangerous to imply.
Adesanya vs Cannonier Head-to-Head
Adesanya is significantly taller than Cannonier: five inches. He holds a 2.5-inch reach advantage. The champion is also six years younger and has three more professional bouts than his challenger. This will be Adesanya’s ninth five-round fight and Cannonier’s fourth.
Adesanya vs Cannonier Fight Information
- Fight: Adesanya (c) (22-1-0) vs Cannonier (15-5-0)
- Location: T-Mobile Arena
- Day/Time: Saturday, July 2, 10 p.m. ET
- Adesanya vs Cannonier Streaming: UFC Fight Pass
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Adesanya vs Cannonier Betting Lines
Adesanya vs Cannonier Prediction
One punch can change everything in an MMA fight. This is why we are not overlooking Cannonier despite his odds. He may be the hardest puncher Adesanya is facing and if he catches Adesanya making a rare mistake, he could just hurt him and gain the advantage. We don’t see that happening but we’re not ecstatic about the price.
Instead, the “over” on the total seems like the best UFC bet. Six of Adesanya’s last eight fights have gone to a decision. He should be able to fight Cannonier where he wants him and win the scorecards. It may not be the most exciting end to UFC X, but Adesanya backers won’t mind that at all.