Don’t Sleep on Pavlovich
UFC betting markets might have Pavlovich at +145 to beat Blaydes in the main event, but the Russian is a much better chance than that.
He is 17-1 following dynamic knockout wins over Tai Tuavasa, Shamil Abdurakhimov, and Derrick Lewis in 2022. We believe his recent form is better than Blaydes, but there is always an element of luck with the heavyweights.
It only takes one punch to end the fight, and Pavlovich needs to avoid the early onslaught from Blaydes, who is the -175 favorite at the sportsbook.
A possible title shot is on the line, and facing Blaydes was ideal for the 30-year-old.
“I knew we (were) going to meet in the cage soon,” Pavlovich said. “Me and my team did great work researching my opponent. I have been training really hard, so I’m ready for anything.
“The fight is the first thing on my mind right now; after that we will see.”
We’re happy to include Pavlovich at +145 in our parlay. It’s not only a value price, but it boosts potential payouts significantly.
Tavares Out for Blood
It’s good to see Brad Tavares back in the UFC, following a 2022 loss to Dricus du Plessis.
However, despite the loss, going three rounds with du Plessis and not getting knocked out is a good performance.
The South African is next in line for a title shot against Israel Adesanya, so the form checks out, which is why sport betting markets have Tavares favored to win at -160.
The 35-year-old Hawaiian faces Bruno Silva on Saturday. Silva is a 22-8 fighter, coming off a submission victory over Tyson Nam, but that’s not the best guide for a fight against someone of Tavares’ class.
Silva was submitted by Gerald Meerschaert prior to that victory, so we’re happy to have his opponent in our parlay.
Take -160 for Tavares, who should have no problem scoring a convincing decision or knockout victory.
Size Matters for Semelsberger
Matthew Semelsberger vs. Jeremiah Wells is the closest fight with online gambling markets at UFC Fight Night.
The equal favorites have impressive records, but the much bigger fighter is Semelsberger, and we believe that will have a big impact on the fight.
The 11-4 fighter got the better of Jake Matthews in December, so he’s an in-form fighter with plenty more wins in store in 2023.
“I’ve been working a lot on my strengths and what I’m good at because that’s what’s really going to win you the fight,” Semelsberger said. “But, at the same time, mixed martial arts has so many tools, so many things you have to look out for that you have to spend time pretty much on everything.”
He is a 30-year-old with plenty of upsides, and although Wells is a nice fighter at 11-2-1, he has had only two fights in the UFC.
Wells submitted 3-2 Mike Mathetha in his UFC debut before knocking out Court McGee, but both of those fighters are well below their best.
We expect money to come for Semelsberger, who is the more popular fighter.