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Before we break down Saturday’s rematch between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal, all odds in this article come from our partners at the FanDuel Sportsbook. Right now, new users get an unbelievable 30-1 odds boost on Usman-Masvidal at UFC 261. Simply bet $5 on either fighter and win $150 if your fighter pulls out the victory. New users can lock in this offer NOW by clicking this link.
Saturday night, UFC 261 will feature a rematch of its Welterweight Division between Kamara Usman and Jorge Masvidal. The two fought in July of 2020. Usman won in a disparate decision, and he has stated that he anticipates doing so again.
Masvidal, for his part, has allowed others to point out some of the flaws in the lazy evaluation which claims he isn’t a threat in this fight: For one thing, Masvidal accepted the first fight with just six days’ notice. He then had to cut nearly 20 pounds in that brief space. Lastly, he had to fly across the globe to get in the octagon.
Suffice it to say, Masvidal had every excuse to lose that first bout. And he did.
On the flip side, Masvidal also still went the distance, despite having no real training for Usman, a dramatic weight cut, and soft legs from travel.
At present, FanDuel Sportsbook has Usman as a (-400) favorite to win with Masvidal returning (+300) for the fight. More importantly, for new FanDuel Sportsbook users it has an incredible offering with a 30:1 odds boost, in any state, on either fighter.
Meaning that if you haven’t bet on UFC before and want to get into the action, you can take a (-400) favorite and give yourself serious underdog action and turn $5 into $150.
To become more educated on each fighter — in case you are just using this as an excuse to drink with the boys and watch a fight with some cash on the line — Usman is a heavy favorite for a reason.
Usman enters the fight with a 18-1 record, 13-0 in the UFC, and is the three-time defending Welterweight champion. He also is riding the longest winning streak for the division in UFC history.
Usman got his start on the mats as a wrestler, becoming a three-time NCAA DII All-American, before getting into mixed martial arts. That comfort on the ground lends itself to his ability to grapple when needed — which he did in the first fight between these two — but he has also developed into a strong strike fighter. His ability to stand was on display in his fight with Colby Covington, which included almost no grappling but was one of the most offensive events in recent UFC memory. Even as he has moved up the ranks, his ability to control opponents has been his calling card, and just eight of his fights have been stoppages.
Masvidal has been much more mercurial in his MMA career. He enters this weekend with a cumulative record of 35-14, with 16 of his wins by knockout.
At 36, Masvidal is three years older than Usman and does not have the background in ground fighting that Usman does — though he did wrestle in his youth before moving to karate and kickboxing.
His 2019 performances, though, moved him closer to the spotlight, with wins against Darren Till, Ben Askren, and Nate Diaz, all in the same calendar year. The first two were stopped in the first round, while his fight with Diaz controversially ended between rounds three and four.
The fact of the matter is that Usman is the more class fighter of the two and should win this fight. He can do more on the mat with submissions, and even if striking is a draw, to bet the underdog is betting on a single punch.