UFC 126 Betting Preview

On February 5 Victor Belfort will finally get his shot at the UFC Middleweight title, but unfortunately for him it’s against the pound-for-pound top fighter in the world: Anderson Silva.

Sportsbooks are not giving him much of a chance, and even the most Belfort-favorable line at Sportsbook has the challenger as the MMA odds +190 underdog.

Belfort (19-8-0) has been around the top ranks of MMA since 1997 but has only held one UFC belt - the Light Heavyweight championship he won from Randy Couture back in 2004. Couture took the belt back only seven months later, and since then, Belfort has lost to most of the big-name opponents he’s faced.

ADVERTISEMENT: Watch as UFC 126 odds on undercard fights come online. Last time you saw Silva, he was getting pounded by Chael Sonnen and escaping late. Check out Sportsbook for the best MMA lines and best MMA bonuses.

He may be on a five-fight win streak, but the only opponent worth mentioning during that streak was over-the-hill former Middleweight Champ Rich Franklin. We all saw what  Silva (27-4-0) did to Franklin in their two Octagon meetings, and he’s beaten every other top-ranked Middleweight contender in the world over his last 13 fights.

Silva looks like safe money as the MMA odds -240 favorite at Sportsbook.

Even more intriguing than the main event on the UFC 126 card is the Light Heavyweight matchup between Ryan Bader (12-0-0) and Jon “Bones” Jones (10-1-0). Despite Bader’s undefeated record and Ultimate Fighter fame he will go into the fight against Jones as a Sportsbook +300 underdog.

Jones is considered to be the future of the UFC Light Heavyweight division and Sportsbooks are finally giving him his due in the lines. The cheapest price on Jones at UFC 126 is a -325 line at Sportsbook, and some books have him as expensive as -435.

It’s also our opinion that Bader is in for an old-fashioned beating at the hands, and elbows, of Jon Jones.

The UFC 126 card will also take us down has-been lane with a matchup between former champions Rich Franklin and Forrest Griffin. Both fighters are past their prime, but that doesn’t mean it won’t make for a good fight. Franklin has only been able to beat other over-the-hill fighters over the last couple of years and will be as cheap as -170 at Sportsbook.

Griffin has recent losses to Silva and Rashad Evans but has been able to beat some of the best at the same time. He will be much bigger than Franklin when they step into the Octagon, and at a +160 price at Sportsbook we like the upset opportunity the original Ultimate Fighter Sportsbook brings in this one. Griffin with an upset unanimous decision victory looks like the best play here.