UFC 303 Betting Preview

June 27, 2024
4 weeks

When Jiří Procházka gets ready to fight at UFC 303 this weekend for the light heavyweight championship, there will be a lot of jokes lobbed his way about how he loves Samurai culture.

But it seems like more than just a hobby. When Procházka faced one of the most challenging moments in his MMA career, Procházka proved he was genuine about being as honorable as the culture he admires. Procházka lost to Alex Pereira during a UFC Light Heavyweight championship fight at UFC 294 last November.

Some people deemed the second-round stoppage too early. Procházka immediately stamped out the outrage following the fight. He refused to blame the official and took the loss in good stride.

Good things have happened for Procházka since that defeat. MMAfighting latest news shows that he stopped Aleksandar Rakić, who some people considered the favorite in the fight, via second-round TKO at UFC 300. When Conor McGregor had to pull out of UFC 303 with an injury, Procházka was awarded a rematch with Pereira for the light heavyweight belt to headline the event.

It was remarkable for UFC CEO Dana White to put together a championship fight on late notice to save a pay-per-view event. Periera and Procházka fought at UFC 300 and only had two months off. There were some concerns surrounding Periera’s toes. 

Pereira said he suffered a broken toe while sparring for his last fight, a first-round knockout of Jamahal Hill. There hasn’t been a lot of time for Pereira to recover. Procházka has a wild style and the power to put anyone out.

This is the spot where I’d usually lean toward Pereira on the money line at -150, but his toe injury is concerning. Instead, back this rematch to see a knockout in the first or second rounds.

Bets to consider: Under 2.5 rounds (-157)

Is Lopes Legit?

    Diego Lopes has made a quick impression on the MMA community. Lopes made his debut at UFC 288 and lost a razor-thin decision to Movsar Evloev. Lopes followed that up by submitting Gavin Tucker and knocking out Pat Sabatini and Sodiq Yusuff.

    Lopes is now 24-6 and many people have the 29-year-old pegged as a future featherweight title contender. This weekend will say a lot about what progress he has made. Lopes will have to take on Brian Ortega, who is a former featherweight title challenger.

    Finally healthy and seemingly happier, Ortega is coming off his first win in four years. Ortega put together an impressive performance after accidentally injuring himself before a fight with Yair Rodriguez back in February.

    Ortega is hoping to use a win in this fight to earn his third opportunity to fight for the featherweight title. He is a well-rounded fighter who will give Lopes the most difficult fight of his career.

    Bets to consider: Ortega +123, Under 2.5 rounds

    Garry and Page Set for Exciting Matchup

    Ian Garry signed the contract. But he would rather be someone ranking above him in the welterweight division. Garry is 14-0 in his career and is desperate to climb the ladder to fight for the belt.

    While Garry wasn’t interested in fighting Michael Venom Page, he agreed to the contract because he wanted to show he was a company man. Page isn’t an easy task for any fighter to deal with. He stands in an open karate stance and likes to dart in and out to land his strikes.

    Garry will have to be on his toes. MMA latest updates show that the winner of this fight should get some big opportunities in the future. 

    Bets to consider: Over 1.5 rounds, Garry -137

    Bueno Silva Hopes to Get Back on Track

    Mayra Bueno Silva looked like a fighter who was going to run through the women’s bantamweight decision. But Bueno Silva’s progress was halted by a poor decision. Even worse, Bueno Silva followed that up with a disastrous performance.

    Bueno Silva failed a drug test following her submission win over Holly Holm last year. Then Bueno Silva looked lost during her title fight with Raquel Pennington. Bueno Silva now has to take on Macy Chiasson, who is a step down in competition.

    Chiasson has struggled when she stepped up to take on other top fighters. Chiasson is 10-3 with two of her losses coming to former title challengers Irene Aldana and Pennington. This is a good opportunity for Bueno Silva to get back on track.

    Bets to consider: Bueno Silva -107

    Smith Isn’t Afraid to Fight Anyone

    Anthony Smith isn’t likely to have an opportunity for the light heavyweight championship ever again. But any young fighter who sees Smith as a stepping stone to glory should be extremely careful with how they proceed. MMA breaking news shows that Smith was a big underdog to Vitor Petrino.

    However, Petrino took big risks, and Smith used his veteran savvy to lock up a first-round submission. When Smith originally agreed to this event, he was supposed to face Carlos Ulberg. Now, Smith will take on another dangerous striker in Roman Dolidze.

    Dolidze has seen his star fade a bit over the past few years. He has only fought twice since 2022. Dolidze lost both of those contests against Marvin Vettori and Nassourdine Imavov. Before that, Dolidze had won four consecutive fights.

    Dolidze will attempt to pursue another knockout win. Smith is vulnerable to heavy hitters, especially recently. Smith has lost three of his past five fights in the promotion.

    Bets to consider: Dolidze -150

    Here are some quick picks on the rest of the fights:

    • Middleweight, Joe Pyfer (-305) vs Marc-Andre Barriault (+240)
    • Featherweight, Cub Swanson (+200) vs Andre Fili (-250)
    • Featherweight, Charles Jourdain (-114) vs Jean Silva (-109) 
    • Bantamweight, Payton Talbott (-1667) vs Yanis Ghemmouri (+950)
    • Women’s strawweight, Michelle Waterson-Gomez (+155) vs Gillian Robertson (-195)
    • Heavyweight, Andrei Arlovski (+195) vs Martin Buday (-250)
    • Flyweight, Rei Tsuruya (-500) vs Carlos Hernandez (+370)
    • Bantamweight, Ricky Simon (-230) vs Vinicius Oliveira (+180)

    Find all the latest boxing news and MMA breaking updates on boxingnews.com.

    By Dean McHugh.