As always, we're here to provide the most comprehensive betting breakdown of all this weekend's UFC action. When it comes to action, we've got you covered.
All odds featured are available at BetMGM.
One of the most intriguing fights to feature on Saturday's card sees Marc-Andre Barriault take on Chidi Njokuani in the UFC's middleweight division.
Brother of WEC veteran Anthony (Check out his knockout of Chris Horodecki), Chidi Njokuani took the long route to the UFC. After becoming a mainstay in RFA and then Bellator, Saturday will mark the accomplished kickboxer's first opportunity to impress on the big stage after earning his spot with a win on Dana White's Contender Series back in September.
After establishing himself as one of the premier emerging talents in the Canadian regional MMA scene, Barriault would make his UFC bow in 2019 though his dream debut would not materialise. However, despite starting his UFC run with a four-fight winless streak, Barriault has since rebounded with back-to-back wins over Abu Azaitar and Dalcha Lungiambula and will be looking to continue his positive momentum with a big win on Saturday night.
While both fighters possess the skills necessary to get their hand raised, Barriault's well-roundedness will prove to be the difference in a hard-fought battle.
In a showdown between fighters whose names are almost comically perfect for a career in professional fighting. Bryan Battle and Tresean Gore will meet on the main card of Saturday's event, both looking to cement their status as future contenders of the middleweight division.
With just three professional bouts under his belt, Tresean Gore is undoubtedly green as he prepares for his first walk to the bright lights of the Octagon. But what The Ultimate Fighter Season 28 finalist lacks in experience, he more than makes up for in sheer potential.
During his time on TUF, Gore established himself as one of the most dangerous prospects to feature on the series in recent years, including a vicious knockout over fellow contestant Gilbert Urbina, who just happens to be Battle's most recent Octagon opponent.
The finale that never was, Battle and Gore were set to meet in the Octagon last year to determine that season's winner of the toughest competition in sports. Though Battle would go on to emerge victorious, Gore will prove to be a seriously tough out on Saturday night, and that's why we're backing the slight favourite.
In what has become something of a hallmark of UFC cards, particularly in the COVID-era of the promotion, a fight-week drop out has led to a replacement fighter stepping in on just a few days notice.
Originally scheduled to take on Phil Hawes, longtime UFC veteran Sam Alvey will now instead take on an arguably tougher test in the form of fringe top 15 contender Brendan Allen.
An alumnus of Dana White's Contender Series, Allen has gone 5-2 since making his UFC debut back in 2019, including wins over the likes of Tom Breese, Karl Roberson, and Kevin Holland. And with a defeat in his most recent outing against fellow prospect Chris Curtis in December, Allen will be hoping a quick return to action and a win over a UFC mainstay like Alvey will be enough to catapult him back into contendership.
Currently burdened by the unfortunate state of riding the second-longest winless streak in UFC history after 7 consecutive fights without getting his hand raised, Alvey will likely need a win on Saturday night in order to secure his now-tenuous position within the UFC.
Unfortunately, despite having the advantage of a full training camp on his side, Alvey's eight-year stint in the UFC will likely come to an end on Saturday, as Allen looks to reassert himself as a future contender at 185lbs.
In a fight that could have title implications in the middleweight division, Saturday's main event will see Norwegian standout Jack Hermansson take on surging contender Sean Strickland.
A constant source of entertainment on social media, Strickland has managed to find himself in a number of strange sparring situations, all caught on camera. Last year the middleweight was training at the RVCA facility under the watchful eye of famed MMA coach Jason Parillo when a disagreement regarding training etiquette nearly caused a brawl between him and grappler Orlando Sanchez.
Clearly content to continue his hilarious training antics despite repeated issues, a video from earlier this week showed Strickland sparring with two-time UFC Light Heavyweight title challenger Dominick Reyes in MMA gloves just days before his first UFC main event while goading Reyes to continue punching him in the face.
They are a special breed, fighters...
Standing across the Octagon from Strickland on Saturday is experienced Scandinavian grappler Jack Hermansson, who will be looking to capitalise on a win in the main event to begin another charge towards UFC gold.
Despite entering the cage as an underdog, Hermansson has some of the best grappling skills in the middleweight division, and should be able to utilise his wrestling to full effect to stifle the offence of Strickland. If The Joker can successfully force the fight to be contested in his domain, Strickland has got a long 25 minutes ahead of him, and that's why we're backing Hermansson to get the W on Saturday and continue his ascent up the ranks of a middleweight division that is crying out for a fresh contender.
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