UFC 244 Odds Preview: BMF Belt Odds For Masvidal Vs. Diaz
Emanating for “The World’s Most Famous Arena” Madison Square Garden in New York City, MMA’s equivalent to an All-Star game, the UFC 244 fireworks explode on Saturday, Nov. 4.
Forgive the cliche, but the winner of the main event truly will be the fans as “East Coast Goon” Jorge Masvidal scraps with “West Coast Gangster” Nate Diaz. This bout may at first look like a toss-up but there are multiple reasons why OddsUSA is going with “Gamebred” Masvidal on fight night.
Masvidal has the experience edge with a 34-13-0 record while Diaz comes in with a 21-11 record. As for the rest of the “Tale of the Tape,” Diaz has a slightly shorter average fight time by about two minute and a height and reach advantage of just two inches according to UFC Stats.
Also factor in strength of schedule. This is just the second bout for Diaz following three years away from MMA competition. Despite an impressive showing by Diaz in his return victory against Anthony Pettis, Masvidal is coming off consecutive knockout wins over Darren Till and Ben Askren.
As MMA fans are aware, the KO of Askren set the new record for the fastest in UFC history at just five seconds. If bettors are in need of more evidence to consider the American Top Team product out of Miami, well, they how about this; is the fact he has almost every other statistical edge (defensive and offensive) enough? How do you like dem apples?
UFC 244 Odds Will Rest on Masvidal’s Advantages on Both Offense and Defense
Diaz does technically lead in significant strikes landed per minute, posting 4.71 to Masvidal’s 4.17, but consider them even. Every other stand-up lead Masvidal has is marginal with exception to striking defense. Diaz sits at 54% to his 67%.
Pretty much everyone should know better than to go to the ground against one of the Diaz brothers by now, but, surprisingly, the numbers show the ground game belonging to Masvidal as well.
Masvidal leads all grappling categories excluding submission average per 15 minutes. Most notable is the difference in takedowns as he is ahead in accuracy (58% to 31%) and defense (77% to 42%) over Diaz.
Both men are 34 so that rules out the age factor at all. This is a welterweight showdown between former lightweights, so hopefully any weight cutting will have less of an impact when the Octagon door closes.
We expect this to be a stand-up affair. Aside from the figures above, we have to go with Masvidal for one more reason you might not have expected: scars. A hat tip goes to UFC’s Dan Hardy and “Inside the Octagon” for this one.
Both fighters are to going “into deep water”—half of Masvidal’s wins and 77% percent of his losses were by decision. Diaz is at 20% and 82% in that regard according Sherdog.com. Diaz has only been stopped twice in his entire career, once in 2006 and 2013.
Similarly, Masvidal has been stopped just four times, with the last incident coming in 2009 while he was under contract with Bellator. He hasn’t been KOed or TKOed in over a decade and has yet to be finished in his run with the UFC.
With this in mind, Diaz is known for the amount of scar tissue he has accumulated. It’s possible he could be opened up more easily than his opponent. Hopefully this won’t lead to a premature stoppage, but it will definitely impact the outcome unless Diaz paints Masival red, making things harder for the judges.
Still, we think a recent statement from Diaz sums up the mood about this fight and will apply to both combatants regardless of the outcome.
“Baddest motherf—ker, that’s what I already am. I was just letting it be known, now it’s on a large scale,” Diaz said. “Win, lose, belt, no belt, every fight I fight is going to be the biggest fight. The baddest motherf—ker fight. Cause I ain’t fighting no suckers. No more. Anymore.”
Side Note: Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson will be in attendance at UFC 244 to award the winner with the one-off ceremonial “BMF” ceremonial championship and will be making a special announcement concerning the UFC at a press conference Friday.
Prediction: Jorge Masvidal by decision (+210)