Shavkat Rakhmonov (left) is a big favorite vs Geoff Neal at UFC 285

Neal vs Rakhmonov Odds & Pick: Shavkat Will Keep Rolling

A long-awaited welterweight fight will take place on the UFC 285 main card Saturday when Geoff Neal (15-4, 7-2 UFC) tangles with terrifying up-and-comer Shavkat Rakhmonov (16-0, 4-0 UFC). Rakhmonov is a heavy favorite to win at -550. 

UFC 285: Geoff Neal vs Shavkat Rakhmonov Betting Odds

Neal vs Rakhmonov Odds
Geoff Neal+400
Shavkat Rakhmonov-550

Odds as of March 3

Our odds calculator tells us Rakhmonov’s odds translate to an implied win probability of 84.62 percent, meaning a $10 bet on him pays out just $11.82. Neal’s +400 odds equate to a 20 percent chance of victory with a $10 bet paying out $50. 

For more information on how these numbers work, including the Neal vs Rakhmonov odds, head over to our How to Bet on UFC page. Also, visit our main UFC betting news page for all the latest news from inside the Octagon.

UFC 285: Neal vs Rakhmonov Preview: Who Will Win?

Let’s see how this one plays out. 

What Neal Does Well

As his “Handz of Steel” nickname suggests, Neal is a heavy puncher who is comfortable hanging in tight and withstanding punishment if it means doing damage. Five of his seven UFC wins have come via stoppage, and he’ll be on the attack early vs Rakhmonov on Saturday. 

The problem with this matchup is that Neal might not get the time to let his hands go. Rakhmonov isn’t exactly a takedown spammer, but he’ll continually try to bring the fight to the mat. For Neal to win, he needs to entertain Rakhmonov’s striking exchanges and rely on his big power to knock the Kazakhstani down. 

What Rakhmonov Does Well

If you don’t stop Rakhmonov’s takedowns (or at least give him something to think about), you die. Plain and simple. Once “Nomad” gets opponents on their back, he’ll bludgeon them with strikes or lock in a submission. 

MMA fans anticipate Rakhmonov will be a future champion, and we’re already seeing that notion materialize in how opponents combat the 28-year-old. His ground game is so fearsome that even the threat of the takedown will open up striking windows (think Khabib Nurmagomedov’s fake takedown and overhand knockdown vs Conor McGregor at UFC 229). Neal’s 85 percent takedown defense is top-notch among active welterweights, but Rakhmonov will certainly find a way around it. From there, a KO or submission is on the table. 

Neal vs Rakhmonov Pick

There’s too much chalk on Rakhmonov to bet him straight up (though I don’t hate the idea of tossing him into a parlay). With that in mind, I’ll be taking Rakhmonov to win inside the distance (-188), as well as the UNDER 2.5 rounds (-200). It’s possible this fight goes the distance, but with Rakhmonov’s punishing style, I won’t bet against a stoppage by him until I see an opponent meet his level of competition.

Pick: Rakhmonov to win inside the distance (-188); UNDER 2.5 rounds (-200); Dart Throw on Rakhmonov in round 2 (+333) and round 3 (+600)

Check out our other pages for full previews and picks on Jon Jones vs Ciryl Gane, Valentina Shevchenko vs Alexa Grasso, Mateusz Gamrot vs Jalin Turner and Bo Nickal vs Jamie Pickett

UFC 285: Full Card & Betting Odds

UFC 285 Odds & Fight Card
  • Main Card
  • Heavyweight Title Fight – Jon Jones (-170) vs Ciryl Gane (+140)
  • Women’s Flyweight Title Fight  – Valentina Shevchenko (-700) vs Alexa Grasso (+450)
  • Welterweight – Shavkat Rakhmonov (-550) vs Geoff Neal (+400)
  • Lightweight – Mateusz Gamrot (-220) vs Jalin Turner (+180)
  • Middleweight – Bo Nickal (-2000) vs Jamie Pickett (+1000)
  • Prelims
  • Bantamweight – Cody Garbrandt (-170) vs Trevin Jones (+140)
  • Middleweight – Derek Brunson (+200) vs Dricus Du Plessis (-250)
  • Women’s Flyweight – Viviane Araujo (+100) vs Amanda Ribas (-125)
  • Middleweight – Julian Marquez (+125) vs Marc-Andre Barriault (-150)
  • Welterweight – Ian Garry (-800) vs Song Kenan (+550)
  • Bantamweight – Cameron Saaiman (-300) vs Mana Martinez (+240)
  • Women’s Strawweight – Jessica Penne (+240) vs Tabatha Ricci (-300)
  • Bantamweight – Da’Mon Blackshear (+350) vs Farid Basharat (-450)
  • Lightweight – Loik Radzhabov (-275) vs Esteban Ribovics (+225)

Odds as of March 3

How To Watch UFC 285: Jones vs Gane
  • Date/Time: March 4, 5:30 p.m. ET
  • Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Arena: T-Mobile Arena
  • Where to Watch: ESPN+, PPV
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