#Betting101: Getting Heavy at UFC 221

Jason Lake

Wednesday, February 7, 2018 1:18 PM UTC

Wednesday, Feb. 7, 2018 1:18 PM UTC

Two very large men will touch gloves Down Under on Saturday when Tai Tuivasa takes on Cyril Asker at UFC 221. This should be an easy choice for our UFC picks.

UFC 221Free UFC Pick: Fight Does Not Go DistanceBest Line Available: Pinnacle

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It’s never fun when you get things almost right with your UFC picks. We wanted to take last week’s Flyweight fight between Deiveson Figueiredo and Joseph Morales to not go the distance, but at the time the only available bet on the UFC props market was the total, so we took UNDER 2.5 rounds (+135). Figueiredo scored the knockout at 4:34 of the second round. Even worse, this bet was available at +168 when the lines closed, so we didn’t get the best price. I may cry.

There’s no crying in the Octagon. Next up: Saturday’s UFC 221 card from Perth Arena in Perth, Australia. That’s Saturday here at the home office (7 p.m. ET), Sunday for the folks Down Under. Our focus this time will be on the Heavyweight division, where they usually don’t go the distance – but once again, the props we want have yet to hit the UFC odds board. Clearly the sportsbooks are conspiring against us.

Power and the Passion

As if we’re going to let that stop us. There are two Heavyweight fights on Saturday’s card; we’re jumping on the first one between Tai “Bam Bam” Tuivasa and Cyril “Silverback” Asker. They won’t be playing pat-a-cake, my friend. Tuivasa, hailing from Sydney, is a pro boxer as well as an MMA practitioner, where he’s 6-0 lifetime – all by KO/TKO, all inside the first round. Asker, a Frenchman with a lifetime record of 9-3, has gone the distance just twice, and not since 2015. Five of his last six fights ended in the first round.

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Tuivasa is a promising prospect and UFC seems to think he will be the next Mark Hunt, they want to push him and Pedro together and they're giving him the spotlight in that fight which should be just a showcase of his skills, hence the easy opponent in Asker. Early KO for him.

— Yuri Dietrich (@executionerufc) February 5, 2018

We don’t know at press time how the odds are going to shake out, but we can guess that the best price will be the opening price. That Figueiredo-Morales bout was an anomaly; Flyweights tend to go the distance, but these two particular fighters didn’t fit the profile, so we went the other way. Tuivasa and Asker definitely suit our purposes.

Anyhow, according to FightMatrix, only 137 of heavyweight 588 fights (23.3 percent) have gone to the judges’ score cards, so anything shorter than –329 will be a bargain, according to the SBR Odds Converter. We’d expect a chalkier price once the odds hit the board, but as long as it stays within reason, get ready to load up – and may the Octagon be with you.

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