The second of two rematch title fights at UFC 268 has the women’s strawweight gold on the line as champion Rose Namajunas makes her first title defense against Zhang Weili, the woman she took the gold from.
The UFC 268 main event also sees a bitter rivalry contested for the second time in Usman vs Covington 2 for the welterweight championship.
UFC 268 is taking place on November 6 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York. The main card will begin at 10 p.m. ET and can be seen on PPV. Looking at Weili vs Namajunas odds, the challenger is the slight betting favorite.
Online sportsbook Bovada has released the Namajunas vs Weili odds with Zhang set at -115 and Rose the -105 underdog. That means you would have to bet $115 to profit $100 on a win by Weili while a $105 winning bet on Namajunas would net you $100.
Namajunas vs Weili Odds
Odds as of November 5 at Bovada
Using our sports betting calculator, the Namajunas -105 odds represent an implied win probability of 51.22 percent while Weili’s -115 betting line offers an implied win probability of 53.49 percent.
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Namajunas vs Weili 2 Odds Analysis
We are seeing a rather large change in the odds from the first time these women met at UFC 261 in April. In that co-main event, then-sitting champion Zhang “Magnum” Weili walked to the cage as the -210 chalk, with the former and now current queen of the division, “Thug” Rose Namajunas, set as the +170 underdog.
Can Rose Duplicate UFC 261 Performance?
I’d like to start by saying I picked Namajunas to beat Weili back in April, though my vision of the fight certainly didn’t play out. I anticipated a similar fight to Weili vs Joanna Jedrzejczyk, which was an all-out war leading to a split-decision win for Magnum.
The first Namajunas vs Weili bout lasted only 78 seconds as the two women were feeling each other out when Rose threw up a beautiful head kick that knocked Zhang out for her first loss since her pro debut.
Namajunas vs Weili 2 Preview
In the early stages of Namajunas’ career, she was known for a great ground game with a strong submission arsenal. In fact, five of her first six pro wins were by submission. But her striking was on full display in her two victories over Jedrzejczyk, stopping Joanna once and outdueling her to a decision in the rematch.
Rose has a great jab and incredible footwork, landing her strikes effectively and then getting out of danger swiftly. Thug does a good job laying traps and countering heavily, willing to go second or even draw out the counter from her opponent and go third.
How Will Weili Rebound?
Magnum may have been relatively unknown when she fought Jessica Andrade in August 2019, a fight in which she was a +130 underdog before earning a first-minute knockout. Weili holds a 21-2 record with a loss to Namajunas and a controversial decision in her debut. Of her 21 wins, 17 have been stoppages with 10 knockouts and seven submissions.
As well-rounded as Namajunas is, Weili is right there with her. She has never been taken down in her five UFC bouts while averaging 1.26 takedowns of her own. However, she works primarily in the striking game and she sits down on everything she throws, typically as a counter-striker.
Magnum is really quick and at times enters the pocket, lands a quick, powerful two-strike combination and gets out before her opponent reacts. She’s also a bit of a bulldog – when she lands and gains confidence, she marches forward, looking to exchange hands.
Namajunas vs Weili 2 Pick
As mentioned above, I anticipated a 25-minute brawl in their first fight and I’m going to stick to that projection for the rematch. This is a very interesting stylistic matchup on the feet. Weili needs to put her head down and get into a dogfight whereas Namajunas will need to use her exceptional footwork and fight IQ to set traps and land heavy.
The head kick that Rose landed in the first fight may make Zhang a little hesitant in shooting for a takedown and as such, I expect much of this fight to play out on the feet in a highly technical, highly entertaining bout that will see the champ retain her belt.
Prediction: Rose Namajunas (-105) via decision
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