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UFC 263 main card preview & betting picks – Saturday 12/6/2021

Nate Diaz UFC betting

UFC 263: Adesanya vs Vettori 2

Latest Odds & Fight Info

Main Event odds Adesanya -265 at Bovada | Vettori +225 at Bovada
When Saturday, June 12 – main card from 7pm MST
Where Gila River Arena – Glendale, Arizona
Watch Live ESPN+ (US), BT Sport (UK), Main Event (AU), UFC Fight Pass,

A sold-out crowd in Glendale, Arizona, will be on hand for this Saturday’s loaded UFC 263 card. There are two title fights at the top of the card in Israel Adesanya vs Marvin Vettori for the UFC Middleweight Championship and Deiveson Figueiredo vs Brandon Moreno for the UFC Flyweight Championship. In the lead-up to those two matches, fan favorite Nate Diaz returns to action to fight Leon Edwards.

Welterweight: Leon Edwards (-600) vs Nate Diaz (+400)

Leon Edwards (18-3-0) was a perfect 8-0 heading into 2020 before being stuck in lockdown due to travel restrictions in the United Kingdom during the COVID-19 outbreak. Edwards finally returned to the octagon in March, only to have his fight against Belal Muhammad end in a no contest early in the second round due to an accidental eye poke. The 29-year-old will try to avoid any more bad luck and potentially put himself in line for a title shot with a win this weekend.

Nate Diaz (20-12-0) is one of the UFC’s most popular fighters despite being just 10-10 with the promotion over his last 20 fights. Win or lose, Diaz is always a warrior, and this fight being allotted five rounds will allow him to put Edwards to the test in a war of attrition. At big odds, it’s tempting to take a shot on the veteran to steal this fight with a submission maneuver in the late rounds. But in reality, Edwards is too versatile, too athletic, and too smart to fall into any tricks. This should be an entertaining brawl that Edwards comes out of with a decisive win.

Leon Edwards by points decision


Welterweight: Belal Muhammad (-230) vs Demian Maia (+195)

Belal Muhammad (18-3-0) is 8-1 over his last nine fights, not including the no contest against Leon Edwards. Demian Maia (28-10) has had a long and storied career in the UFC, and he is 3-1 over his last four fights since going 0-3 in his previous three bouts. This is the last fight on Maia’s UFC contract, and at 43 years of age, many expect this to be his last professional fight.

Maia’s last loss came in a knockout against Gilbert Burns. Muhammad doesn’t have the kind of power that Burns does, which could allow Maia to get close enough to put himself in position to steal a win with a submission maneuver. On the other hand, Muhammad has been rock-solid in recent years, and it’s hard to know how much Maia will have left in the tank at 43. We think Muhammad is good enough to keep Maia at bay here, but bettors looking for a longshot could do worse than the +195 on Maia.

Belal Muhammad by points decision


Light Heavyweight: Jamahal Hill (-300) vs Paul Craig (+250)

Jamahal Hill (8-0-0) has won each of his first three fights in the UFC, although his knockout win over Klidson Abreu was later overturned to a no contest after Hill tested positive for marijuana use after the fight. Paul Craig (14-4-1) is 3-0-1 over his last four fights with one draw, one knockout win, and two submission wins.

This should be an interesting clash of styles, as Hill is a heavy-hitter with four knockout wins and Craig is a submission specialist with 12 of his 14 professional wins coming that way. Craig is extremely dangerous when he can get fights to the mat, but his suspect striking defense will likely get him in trouble in this bout against a very strong and versatile hitter like Hill.

Jamahal Hill by KO/TKO

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