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UFC 298 Main Card Analysis, Betting Preview: Dvalishvili vs Cejudo

Welcome back to the best place to bet on UFC, BetUS, as myself, Dave Manyun, is back to break down the high-profile main card bouts of the latest UFC Pay-Per-View event.

The bantamweight division is full of intrigue, and the fascinating landscape of the top-10-rankings will continue this Saturday when No. 2 ranked Merab Dvalishvilli faces the former king of 135 pounds, Henry Cejudo.

UFC 298 Main Card Analysis, Betting Preview: Dvalishvili vs Cejudo
UFC 298 Main Card Analysis, Betting Preview: Dvalishvili vs Cejudo

The UFC betting odds for Merab vs. Cejudo are set, so join me as I dissect this highly anticipated main card bout scheduled for February 17, at UFC 298 in Anaheim, California.

UFC 298 Information

  1. Date & Time: Saturday, Feb. 17, 2024 – 6:30 p.m. ET
  2. Location: Honda Center, California
  3. UFC 298 Live Stream: UFC Fight Pass
  4. Main Event Bout: Alexander Volkanovski vs Ilia Topuria
  5. Co-Main Event Bout: Robert Whittaker vs Paulo Costa

 

Dvalishvili vs Cejudo Betting Odds

UFC 298: Fighter Previews

Merab “The Machine” Dvalishvili

Dvalishvili has been striving to live up to his nickname, “The Machine,” since he lost his first two UFC fights, and don’t look now, but he’s done just that – winning nine consecutive fights and scored what seems to be 15,893 takedowns.

Last March, the 33-year-old Georgian defeated former champion Petr Yan in a five-round war, solidifying his position as a top contender at bantamweight. For context, nobody, and I mean nobody, has defeated Yan decisively until Merab, living up to his nickname yet again, put a pace on the former Russian titleholder like no other.

If he can secure a second straight victory over a previous champion, it will be tough to deny him an opportunity to compete for gold later this year.

Henry “Triple C” Cejudo

The cruel world of MMA can be told through Cejudo’s drop from greatness. One day, he’s regarded as one of the greatest to ever do it behind incredible wins over T.J. Dillashaw, Dominick Cruz, and Demetrious Johnson, and now, the former Olympic wrestler is entering UFC 298 as a betting underdog at the sportsbook versus a wrestler that’s never held UFC gold… Rough time.

However, it isn’t as simple as it seems. Cejudo retired from the sport and returned three years later to lose a split decision against former champion Aljamain Sterling. During his time away, the 135-pound division evolved into one of the most talent-rich weight classes, and at 37, there’s a chance that the Cejudo of old won’t exist.

 

 

Dvalishvili vs Cejudo: Tale of The Tape

Dvalishvili
Cejudo
Georgia
Country
USA
33
Age 
37
16-4-0
Pro Record (Win/Loss)
16-3-0
3 KOs, 1 Submissions 
KO/Sub/Dec
7 KOs, 1 Submissions
5’6” 
Height 
5’4” 
68.0”
Reach 
67.5” 
15:24 
Avg Fight Time 
13:21 
0.09
Knockdown Avg (15 min)
0.43
4.46
Avg Strikes Landed Per Min
3.93 
6.55
Takedown Avg (15 min)
2.07
W/W/W/W/W
Win/Loss (Last 5)
L/W/W/W/W

UFC 298: Merab vs Cejudo Breakdown and Analysis

Striking? Well, this should favor Cejudo. How about wrestling? Hmm, he’s a former Olympian, so he should have enough to defend the incoming takedowns at least, and potentially land some of his own. Durability? No problem, he’s only been stopped once during a 20-fight pro career.

So, the question is, why is the betting line so wide? I believe the high-tempo, non-stop pressure of Merab suffocates his opponents, which is causing the current Las Vegas UFC odds. And to be honest, I’m in agreement that Merab is the rightful favorite, and while we can’t be sure if the takedowns will land, he won’t stop trying, and eventually, the aging Cejudo will start to run out of gas.

Cejudo cannot match the strength, but he can succeed in striking at a distance. However, I can’t envision Merab giving him enough room to do anything, similar to how Yan and even Aldo could barely attack because they were constantly fighting takedowns.

Dvalishvili vs Cejudo Prediction

UFC 298 Best Bet: Dvalishvili by Decision [-150]

While I’m confident that Dvalishvili is the right side for UFC 298, it isn’t easy to fade the diverse skill set and championship experience of Cejudo at -225 unless you need an ideal UFC parlay pick tonight. However, as I do believe in the durability of Cejudo as well as the nature of the bantamweight division, which often delivers more decision victories than not, attacking the Merab decision prop at -150 is a chunk of betting value I can get behind.

UFC 298 Dvalishvili vs Cejudo: Crystal Ball Prediction

In this top-ranked bantamweight showdown, a quick rub of my crystal ball reveals “The Machine” doing what he does best: non-stop pressure, consecutive takedown attempts, and a high-volume scrap that will eventually give Cejudo no options but to fade as the fight goes on.

Don’t expect it to be pretty, but a split-decision victory for Merab Dvalishvili is on the cards, and a potential clash with Sean O’Malley or Chito Vera awaits him in Q3 of 2024.

Potential Bets from a Merab Win by Decision:

 

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The odds and predictions in the article are based on the time of writing and publication. They may differ as to when the actual event takes place.

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