MMA Picks: Betting Advice for UFC Paris
The UFC returns to our TVs this weekend after a week off, following the stunning scenes in Utah at UFC 278. This fight card is first-ever UFC event in France after the law change regarding MMA in the country in 2020.
Minutes away from where he grew up, Frenchman Cyril Gane will headline the card, as he and Tai Tuivasa look to put themselves in contention for the next heavyweight title shot.
Here are our UFC picks and tips for this weekend.
Cyril Gane vs. Tai Tuivasa
The main card concludes with France’s superstar meeting against Australia's best hope at a heavyweight title, as Gane and Tuivasa battle in the cage. This fight will see the winner likely get a shot at the belt next, but it is the hometown favorite who we’re backing in this one.
Gane is a sensation. There is no heavyweight in MMA right now who moves as well as he does, and at 246 punds, his skill set is far from what you would expect for someone that big. Gane’s excellent footwork and rapid shots with his legs and hands make him a problem for everyone. It is also important to remember how he was winning the fight against Francis Ngannou after the first two rounds, until his wrestling inferiority cost him the fight on the scorecards.
As for Tuivasa, his method of victory is simple: knock out Gane. That has been Tuivasa's strategy to get himself this far, so his famous route to victory is not going to change now.
Gane’s movement, however, is going to make him tough to hit, and we think this means that France’s hottest MMA prospect gets another win and sets up another shot at the belt.
Ciryl Gane by KO/TKO is +110 with DraftKings.
Robert Whittaker vs. Marvin Vettori
As far as co-main events go, it doesn’t get much more enticing than this one. Both men have lost twice to Israel Adesanya in the middleweight division, but they both seem to be one win away from another go at the title as well.
Robert Whittaker will be a nightmare for the wrestling-focused Marvin Vettori. Whittaker’s karate style will keep him bouncing around the cage and make Vettori’s usual pressure look ineffective. What’s more, the way the Italian has bullied previous opponents won't work in this one, as Whittaker is one of the most underrated wrestlers on the roster.
Vettori is going to need to get a few takedowns, as the former champion will continue to pick him apart on the feet. Either way, as it is a three-round fight, the battle will likely go the distance.
Robert Whittaker to win on points is -120 with FanDuel.
Alessio Di Chirico vs. Roman Kopylov
In a very European-focused fight card, Italy's Alessio Di Chirico will dance with Russia's Roman Kopylov this Saturday in what is one of the toughest fights to call on the card.
In 10 UFC fights over the past six years, Di Chirico has won four. He has also not fought since a brutal head-kick KO against Abdul Razak last August. Di Chirico is, however, still boasting a record of 13 wins and six losses in MMA.
As for Kopylov, he has seen five fights get canceled on him in the past three years, meaning just two fights in the past four years for the Russian in total. Worse yet, his claim to being a hot prospect took a huge hit in this time, as he lost to a rear-naked choke against Karl Roberson in 2019 and then a unanimous decision loss to Albert Duraev.
Alessio Di Chirico and Roman Kopylov to go the distance is -160 with FanDuel.
John Makdessi vs. Nasrat Haqparast
We expect fireworks between Nasrat Haqparast and John Makdessi with so much on the line for both fighters. Simply put, another loss for Haqparast could mean he could be cut from the UFC, while Makdessi is now in his 19th fight with the UFC and also can’t afford to lose anymore.
Haqparast has only four of his 13 wins coming by decision, and it has been three years since he knocked out an opponent with his famous right hand. Makdessi has also been involved in five fights in a row that have gone the distance, and it feels like we should get some knockout blows in this one.
John Makdessi and Nasrat Haqparast to not go the distance is +154 with FanDuel.
William Gomis vs. Jarno Errens
UFC fans will finally get a look at William Gomis this weekend as one of Europe's top prospects makes his UFC debut in front of his own fans.
Gomis has 10-2 record in MMA, and after going 2-2 in his first four fights, the Frenchman is now on an eight-fight winning streak and is coming off a third-round win against Jose Marcos in ARES FC.
Jarno Errens is also making his UFC debut and comes in with a 13-3-1 record. What’s more, he has lost more recently with a defeat back in April coming before a unanimous decision win over Alisher Abdullaev.
It’s a fight between two debutants, and that often results in carnage.
William Gomis by KO/TKO is +260 with FanDuel.
Charles Jourdain vs. Nathaniel Wood
Two men looking to take one giant leap towards the Top 10 of the featherweight rankings will meet to kick off the main card, as Nathaniel Wood and Charles Jourdain clash not long after fighting so recently.
Both men had a fight in July. Jourdain lost to Shane Burgos via majority decision and Wood eased to a unanimous decision win against Charles Rosa at UFC London.
Wood has stated several times in the buildup how he aims to get the knockout win against his opponent here, but after three decisions in a row, this seems doubtful. What's more, Jourdain has seen all of his last four fights go the distance, and it looks like the same may happen in this one.
Wood to win on points is +270 with FanDuel.
These are some other bets worth a look on this week’s schedule:
- Stephanie Egger to win on points (+200) against Aillin Perez (+410)
- Cristian Quionez (+102) to beat Khalid Taha (-130)
- Benoit Saint-Denis to win by submission (+240) against Gabriel Miranda (+210)
- Joaquin Buckley by KO/TKO (+340) against Nassourdine Imavov (-265)
- Michal Figlak to win on points (+100) against Fares Ziam (+152)
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