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UFC 274: Oliveira vs Gaethje main event preview & best bets

UFC 274: Oliveira vs Gaethje

Charles Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje

Latest Odds & Fight Info

Main Event odds Oliveira -181 at Bovada | Gaethje +156 at Bovada
When Saturday, May 7 – main card from 7pm MST
Where Footprint Center – Phoenix, United States
Watch Live ESPN+ PPV (US), BT Sport (UK), Main Event (AU)

Charles Oliveira will attempt to defend his UFC Lightweight Championship against Justin Gaethje in the main event at UFC 274 this Saturday night. This will be the second championship fight on a loaded card taking place at the Footprint Center in Phoenix, Arizona.

Charles Oliveira record, stats & form

Charles Oliveira (32-8-0) continued his dominant run with a successful title defense against Dustin Poirier at UFC 269, ending the fight with a rear-naked choke submission hold in the third round for his UFC-record 18th finish with the promotion. It’s hard to believe that Oliveira once suffered through a 2-4 slump that spanned from 2015 to 2017. He’s been nothing but dominant since then with a perfect 10-0-0 record that includes six submission wins and three knockout wins. A staggering eight of those 10 fights earned Performance of the Night bonuses.

Justin Gaethje record, stats & form

Justin Gaethje bounced back from his loss to Khabib Nurmagomedov at UFC 254 with a decision win over Michael Chandler at UFC 268. Gaethje’s win over Chandler came in the Fight of the Night, his sixth Fight of the Night in his last nine bouts. Prior to the loss against Nurmagomedov, Gaethje was a perfect 4-0-0 in his previous four fights with four straight knockout wins, most notably snapping Tony Ferguson’s 12-fight winning streak during that run. He’ll be looking to snap another long winning streak this Saturday.

Oliveira vs Gaethje predictions & best bets

This is a tough fight to handicap. Gaethje is a very dangerous striker that is certainly capable of standing toe-to-toe with Oliveira. There’s certainly an argument to be made that this fight figures to be closer than the current betting odds would indicate, making Gaethje a decent value pick at these odds. Bettors thinking along these lines should strongly consider betting on Gaethje by knockout; 19 of his 23 professional wins have come by knockout and that’s definitely his clearest path to an upset win in this one.

But despite Gaethje’s credibility as a viable contender, Oliveira is just too good to pick against. His decision to switch coaches and focus more on striking over the last five years has paid huge dividends. He’s still an excellent grappler and submission specialist, but he can also hold his own in a striking match. There aren’t any clear holes in his game right now, and he should have a pretty decided edge on the mat even if Gaethje has a slight edge in striking. A Gaethje knockout wouldn’t surprise us, but we believe that the more likely outcome is a well-timed submission hold leading to a successful title defense for Oliveira.

Charles Oliveira by submission


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