UFC 213 Betting Update: Nunes-Shevchenko a Pick ‘Em

Nunes Schevchenko

Jason Lake

Friday, July 7, 2017 6:57 PM GMT

Friday, Jul. 7, 2017 6:57 PM GMT

After a surge of action on Valentina Shevchenko, Women’s Bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes has edged back into a pick ‘em situation on Saturday’s UFC odds board.

Were you able to grab some of that free money for Saturday’s UFC 213 main event? There was a window of opportunity to bet both sides in the UFC Women’s Bantamweight title fight between champion Amanda Nunes (+105 at BetOnline) and challenger Valentina Shevchenko (+100 at Sports Interaction), but that window is closed as we go to press. Nunes has gradually worked her way back into pick ‘em territory after opening as high as –150 on the UFC odds board.

I suppose that means we have to choose a side now. This is a tricky spot, as you’d expect with a pick ‘em. But maybe it’s not as even a fight as people are anticipating. There’s a definite clash of styles to consider; Nunes (14-4 lifetime, 7-1 UFC) is an aggressive Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt, while Shevchenko (14-2 lifetime, 3-1 UFC) is a technical counter-striker and a former Muay Thai champion with a black belt in judo and 2nd dan in Taekwondo. Will they cancel each other out Saturday night in Las Vegas?
 

Who’s Zoomin’ Who?

There are two schools of thought on this matchup. The stats point to Nunes and her higher volume for significant strikes: 4.69 per minute to 2.48 for the challenger, according to FightMetric. Nunes is three inches taller with a two-inch reach advantage; she used her range to win the first round of their fight at UFC 196, then easily won the second with her superior ground-and-pound.

Then Shevchenko (–130) flashed some of her brilliant defensive technique in the third round and nearly won the fight. The rematch is five rounds, which leads to the other school of thought: Nunes will run out of gas and drop the belt to Shevchenko in the fourth or fifth. The champion has never fought beyond three rounds, and her unanimous decision over Shevchenko was her only UFC fight that went 15 minutes.

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Shevchenko weighs in at 134.5. No cut for her. Her sister told me yesterday she was at 135 two months ago. It’s her walk around weight.

— Marc Raimondi (@marc_raimondi) July 7, 2017
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Shevchenko, meanwhile, went the full five rounds in her victory over Holly Holm (–310). She’s patient, she’s got the stamina – putting her in our UFC picks seems reasonable enough. But we’re going to the props market instead. The over/under for Saturday’s fight is 2.5 rounds; given Nunes’ style and limited reserves, we think it’ll end in an early KO for the champ or a late KO for the challenger. Again, we’ll let them sort it out in the Octagon. May the better woman win.

Free Pick: Fight doesn’t go to decision (–240)
Best Line: 5Dimes

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