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UFC Fight Night Moncton: Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith

Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith Betting Odds

The UFC makes its first-ever trip to Moncton, New Brunswick, Canada for UFC Fight Night: Volkan “No Time” Oezdemir vs Anthony “Lionheart” Smith on October 27. The No. 2-ranked light heavyweight, Oezdemir, looks to stop the hype train of the No. 9-ranked light heavyweight, Smith. “No Time” opened as the -165 favorite with “Lionheart” coming back at +135.

Oezdemir graces the Octagon for the first time since his loss to Daniel Cormier for the light heavyweight belt at UFC 220. Cormier is the first person to beat Oezdemir in the UFC and just the second person to top “No Time” overall. The Switzerland native has never closed as a favorite. Oezdemir has looked dominant in the Octagon and bettors should be all over the -165 moneyline. Smith is undefeated over his first two fights since moving from middleweight up to light heavyweight, both by devastating knockouts. But “Lionheart” is making a big jump up in competition and +135 odds seem rather generous.

 Breaking down Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith

Oezdemir (-165) blitzes his opponents from the moment the ref says go, looking to finish the fight as quickly as possible. “No Time” exploded onto the UFC scene, picking up three fights in five months over top-ranked opponents. It all started against Ovince Saint Preux when he closed as a +300 underdog and secured a split-decision victory as he outstruck OSP 103-79. The 28-year-old followed that bout with back-to-back, first-round, first-minute knockout victories over Misha Cirkunov and Jimi Manuwa.

His devastating path brought him toe to toe with Daniel Cormier at UFC 220 where he was outmatched by the champion, getting finished by TKO in the second round. “No Time” is 15-2 with 11 wins by T/KO, all of which came in the first round. He closes the distance and engages in the clinch where he can land vicious knockout strikes from short distance. He averages 5.91 strikes per minute while absorbing 5.14 significant strikes per minute.

Smith (+135) is coming off back-to-back, first-round T/KO finishes over UFC veterans Rashad Evans and Mauricio Rua just six weeks apart. “Lionheart” has won five of his last six fights all by T/KO and in his career, he is 30-13 with 17 wins by T/KO. The 30-year-old doesn’t overextend seeking the knockout, but rather capitalizes on his opponents’ mistakes and with his power, it only takes one strike to put his foes in a bad way.

Although it likely won’t be on display in this bout, the Texas native has an underrated jiu-jitsu game having a third of his victories coming by way of submission. Smith keeps a consistent pace on his opponents, averaging 3.35 strikes per minutes. However, he doesn’t have a tremendous ability to avoid strikes, absorbing 3.95 significant strikes per minute with a significant strike defense of just 46 percent.

Don’t expect a high-level jiu-jitsu match to take place when these two gladiators enter the cage at the Moncton Events Centre in late October. Although both fighters have shown a willingness to stand and bang, I think Oezdemir has weird scary power, being able to put his opponents to sleep from a seemingly non-dangerous punch. Smith will have a slight reach advantage but Volkan’s style is to get inside and go to work anyway so I don’t anticipate that will make much of a difference. Get ready for a great, but short war when these two do battle.

UFC: Volkan Oezdemir vs Anthony Smith
  • Volkan Oezdemir -165
  • Anthony Smith +135
Odds as of August 7 at Bovada