Chimaev is favored vs Whittaker at UFC Saudi Arabia

Chimaev vs Whittaker Odds & Picks: 5-Round Action At UFC Saudi Arabia

Fearsome middleweight contender Khamzat Chimaev will be a -250 favorite over Robert Whittaker (+200 underdog) when the pair clash at UFC Saudi Arabia on June 22 in Riyadh. 

Chimaev is used to steep odds, as his moderate favorite status vs Whittaker represents the tightest odds he's ever faced in the UFC. Meanwhile, Whittaker returns to underdog status after besting Paulo Costa as a favorite at UFC 298.

Here's a deeper preview of the Chimaev vs Whittaker odds and our best bets for UFC Saudi Arabia.

Chimaev vs Whittaker Odds

UFC Saudi Arabia: Chimaev vs Whittaker Odds
Khamzat Chimaev-250
Robert Whittaker+200

Odds as of June 10

Our odds calculator suggests Chimaev's -250 status awards him a 71.43% implied chance of victory, with a $100 bet paying out $140. At +200, Whittaker gets a 33.33% chance and a $100 bet cashes $300. 

Remember folks, this is a five-round main event.

Betting Preview: How Chimaev Wins

Chimaev must capitalize on early opportunities. I think back to his bout vs Kamaru Usman at UFC 284. "Borz" chased the ex-champ all over the cage, pinning him in submissions and cranking him with all kinds of pressure. While Chimaev couldn't secure a submission, he came damn close. But then the gas tank emptied.

Chimaev isn't a powerhouse striker; he's long and lean. Usman started to piece him up by Round 3 as momentum swung. Whittaker is a master of pacing and movement.  The Aussie will hold a massive advantage if this fight carries beyond 15 minutes.

So, if you're keen on Chimaev, I'd recommend a bet on him to win in Round 1 or even a Chimaev ML + UNDER 1.5 rounds parlay. Usman, an elite wrestler, barely held up against Chimaev's wrestling offense, so it will be an even greater challenge for Whittaker.

Betting Preview: How Whittaker Wins

Scramble, bru! You'll need it. Whittaker's survival has less to do with his pure takedown defense and more so with how he scrambles out of trouble when Khamzat transitions on the ground. We saw Rob survive some crazy moments with Yoel Romero, so we know the former champ can get the job done.

Whittaker might spend a round or two on his butt, but every round in MMA begins on the feet. That's where Whittaker needs to make his mark. While some UFC bettors have pointed out that Rob's striking gets predictable at times (he loves his jab-high-kick combo), a simple strike routine might be enough to outwit Chimaev, who isn't known for composure or defense.

In the end, you're likely taking Whittaker as a SU underdog. I also don't hate a small bet on Rob by decision.

Chimaev vs Whittaker Pick

Round 1 will be a nail-biter. Khamzat will likely dive for a takedown immediately as the chaos escalates. While I'm not sure Whittaker is fighting at his highest level these days, he's athletic and experienced. Khamzat is a beast, but Whittaker is a live 'dog at UFC Saudi Arabia.

I'm picking Whittaker at +200. Pray for his early survival and watch him go to work in the later rounds.

Pick: Whittaker (+200)

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