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UFC 244: Masvidal vs Diaz Odds and Predictions

The UFC heads back to Madison Square Garden for its annual card on Saturday, November 2. UFC 244 will be the 500th event in company history and in the main event, a new title will be introduced, perhaps as a one night only item. The BMF (baddest mother f***er) belt is on the line between Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal and Nate Diaz. Masvidal is the -155 favorite to be crowned the UFC’s BMF while Diaz is coming back at +125.

Event Information
  • UFC 244: Masvidal vs Diaz
  • Date/Time: November 2, 6:30 p.m. ET
  • TV Coverage: PPV

Jorge Masvidal vs Nate Diaz

Jorge “Gamebred” Masvidal (-155) enters this fight on a two-fight winning streak with both being T/KO victories, including an incredible flying knee knockout over Ben Askren at UFC 239 in July. Nate Diaz (+125) ended his three-year hiatus with a dominant unanimous-decision victory over Anthony Pettis at UFC 241 in August and promptly called out Masvidal.

It’s hard to think of two fighters more worthy of fighting for the BMF belt than Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal. Diaz walks straight at his opponents, talking trash, flipping them off and slapping them. He has outstanding cardio and boxing, however, his striking defense is less than desirable as he absorbs a lot of damage but keeps coming forward.

Likewise, Gamebred storms out of the gate to start the fight running at his foe eager to get in a striking exchange. He does tend to forget to move his head and gets a little flat-footed in the latter stages of a round but still fires powerful strikes. Masvidal has the power advantage, Diaz has the cardio advantage. Which one will prevail?

For more on this fight, check out my odds analysis article.

Prediction: Nate Diaz (+125) via decision

Kelvin Gastelum vs Darren Till

Darren “The Gorilla” Till (+180) is making the jump to the middleweight division after back-to-back losses to Tyron Woodley and Jorge Masvidal, the latter being a second-round knockout defeat. Prior to this losing skid, the England native had been on a four-fight winning streak, including wins over Donald Cerrone and Stephen Thompson. Welcoming Till to the middleweight division is Kelvin Gastelum (-230), who is coming off a loss in the interim title fight against current champion Israel Adesanya.

Till fights long with an upright stance and very straight punches. The Gorilla also throws a nice sidekick to the thigh of his foes that straightens them up, keeps them at distance and allows him to follow it up with a powerful punch. He does have a habit of poor head movement and has been caught moving straight back with his chin in the air.

Despite Gastelum’s short stature (he stands five-foot-nine), he has an ability to storm in and close the distance while having accurate strikes. He’s not afraid of eating a punch to get on the inside and fire his heavy left hand.

Prediction: Kelvin Gastelum (-230) via decision

Stephen Thompson vs Vicente Luque

It has been a bit of a downward spiral recently for Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (-120), who has gone 1-2-1 over his last four fights, including suffering his first professional knockout to Anthony Pettis in March. Looking to add another defeat to his record is Vicente “The Silent Assassin” Luque (-110), who is carrying a six-fight winning streak into this bout. Five of those wins were finishes.

Wonderboy is a tough puzzle to solve with his high-level karate style. If you give Thompson space and allow him to set up his kicks, he will pick you apart over and over again. His punches are crisp and accurate and he does a fantastic job sliding away after throwing a combination. Wonderboy does keep his hands low, even in striking exchanges, which allows him to be countered.

Luque is a finisher, plain and simple, with 15 of his 17 professional wins coming by knockout or submission and only three of his 12 UFC bouts going to the judges’ scorecards. He constantly stalks forward throwing hard leg kicks and powerful straight punches, though he does absorb a lot of damage on his entries. But with his power, he doesn’t mind going tit for tat.

Prediction: Vicente Luque (-110) via knockout

Derrick Lewis vs Blagoy Ivanov

Blagoy “Baga” Ivanov (-115) is looking to extend his two-fight winning streak and continue to climb the UFC heavyweight rankings. The Bulgaria native had won five in a row before making his UFC debut but that streak ended in a five-round decision loss to Junior Dos Santos. Meanwhile, Derrick “The Black Beast” Lewis (-115) returns to the Octagon following his TKO loss to Dos Santos in March. However, it may be a new-looking Lewis as he had surgery to repair a torn ACL, MCL and meniscus that he injured – in 2015!

Baga is a very patient fighter who slowly inches forward until he is in punching range when he will let his hands fly. He typically only throws one or two punches at a time and has very good judgment of distance and range, which allows him to slide just out of danger while landing a solid straight punch on his opponents. That being said, he doesn’t have a ton of power, with only two knockout wins over his last 13 bouts.

Conversely, 18 of Lewis’ 21 wins have been by knockout and if you get in his range, you are in extreme danger. The Black Beast can turn the lights off even deep into fights. As well, a more stable knee could help his movements and power.

Prediction: Derrick Lewis (-115) via knockout

Kevin Lee vs Gregor Gillespie

After a one-fight stop at welterweight, Kevin “The Motown Phenom” Lee (+120) is returning to lightweight and is looking to give undefeated Gregor “The Gift” Gillespie (-150) his first loss. Lee had been in title contention, even fighting Tony Ferguson for the interim belt in 2017, but he lost that bout and enters this fight on his first-ever losing slide. Meanwhile, Gillespie is a perfect 6-0 in the Octagon (13-0 overall) and he is also on a five-fight finish streak.

I’m really interested to see how the Motown Phenom performs after a full training camp out of the iconic Tristar gym under head coach Firas Zahabi – Tristar is home to the great GSP. Lee’s three losses in his last four fights came against elite talent in Tony Ferguson, Al Iaquinta and Rafael dos Anjos. He has great wrestling, averaging 3.27 takedowns per 15 minutes, but his striking is still a little basic, with a straight right, knees to the body in the clinch and head kicks.

Similarly, Gillespie is also a high-level wrestler who has averaged 7.44 takedowns per 15 minutes and his chain wrestling is exceptional. When he clasps his hands together, he does a tremendous job not letting go and constantly weighing on his foes, dragging them to the canvas over and over again. His striking is also a little unpolished, typically going with a straight right to the body followed by a left hook to the head looking to close distance and get to the floor. His outstanding conditioning allows him to keep a high pace for the duration of the bout and eventually get the finish.

Prediction: Kevin Lee (+120) via decision

Corey Anderson vs Johnny Walker

A win by Johnny Walker (-170) could catapult him into title contention as he is 3-0 in the UFC with a trio of first-round knockouts and, overall, he’s on a nine-fight winning streak. Looking to stop Walker’s hype train is Corey “Overtime” Anderson (+140), who is riding a three-fight winning streak of his own. The American previously had a rough patch where he lost three of four fights, including knockout defeats to Jimi Manuwa and Ovince St. Preux.

It’s a little hard to see what we have with Walker as his three UFC fights have lasted a combined 1:50 with three different knockouts. Additionally, he has only landed a total of 21 strikes, most of which came after his opponents had hit the floor after the initial hard shot. In Dana White’s Tuesday Night Contender Series Brazil, he showed the ability to go the full three rounds, but his pace and movements were drastically reduced.

Anderson is an outstanding wrestler, averaging 4.96 takedowns per 15 minutes, including 23 over his last four fights. His striking is a little raw, winging wild punches, and he doesn’t bring his hands back to his face for protection, which has got him in trouble in the past. If he can secure takedowns and hold Walker down, he will be successful but any time the fight is standing, he is in harm’s way.

Prediction: Johnny Walker (-170) via knockout

Here’s a look at the full list of odds for UFC 244: Masvidal vs Diaz:

Jorge Masvidal vs Nate Diaz Betting Odds
Jorge Masvidal-155
Nate Diaz+125

Odds as of November 1 at Bovada

Kelvin Gastelum vs Darren Till Betting Odds
Kelvin Gastelum-230
Darren Till+180

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Stephen thompson vs Vicente Luque Betting Odds
Stephen Thompson-120
Vicente Luque-110

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Derrick Lewis vs Blagoy Ivanov Betting Odds
Derrick Lewis-115
Blagoy Ivanov-115

Odds as of November 1 at Bovada

Corey Anderson vs Johnny Walker Betting Odds
Corey Anderson+140
Johnny Walker-170

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Kevin Lee vs Gregor Gillespie Betting Odds
Kevin Lee+120
Gregor Gillespie-150

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Shane Burgos vs Makwan Amirkhani Betting Odds
Shane Burgos-225
Makwan Amirkhani+175

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Brad Tavares vs Edmen Shahbazyan Betting Odds
Brad Tavares+125
Edmen Shahbazyan-155

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Andrei Arlovski vs Jairzinho Rozenstruik Betting Odds
Andrei Arlovski+130
Jairzinho Rozenstruik-160

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Katlyn Chookagian vs Jennifer Maia Betting Odds
Katlyn Chookagian-160
Jennifer Maia+130

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Lyman Good vs Chance Rencountre Betting Odds
Lyman Good-120
Chance Rencountre-110

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada

Julio Arce vs Hakeem Dawodu Betting Odds
Julio ArceEVEN
Hakeem Dawodu-130

Odds as of November 2 at Bovada