Charlies Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje could be an early contender for Fight of the Year if all goes to plan at Phoenix’s Footprint Center on Saturday at UFC 274.
Oliveira puts his UFC lightweight belt on the line but he has ot lost for years, so that’s the task awaiting the challenger.
UFC betting markets have Gaethje as the +140 underdog to claim the title, but beating the favorite is easier said than done.
Oliveira Still Underrated?
He’s one of the most dominant UFC fighters in the modern generation, but we feel as though Charles Oliveira doesn’t get the respect he deserves.
For a fighter riding a 10-win streak, we thought Charles Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje odds could favor the champion more heavily. He’s currently the -170 favorite after opening at -175, so there has been more support for Gaethje.
The Brazillian has our respect after beating the likes of Dustin Poirier, Michael Chandler, Tony Ferguson and Kevin Lee.
His list of beaten opponents is long and the 32-year-old has an excellent ground game, which could give Gaethje problems.
Gaethje is a tough opponent who has lost only three times in 26 fights, but Oliveira deserves to be the favorite and it could take beating Gaethje to get him the respect he deserves.
“Oh, critics always have something to say,” Oliveira told UFC.com “I like to let my actions talk for themselves. What people write about after I fight is what they write.
“Again, I like to let my fights talk for me. I have won my last 10 fights, finishing all but one, but the most important fight is always the next fight. I am focused on this fight and will let this fight talk for me. What people say afterwards is just talk.”
Charles Oliveira vs Justin Gaethje is going to be an epic clash and the champion only needs to weather the early onslaught for his live betting odds to come tumbling down.
‘Highlight’ Ready to Create One
Justin “The Highlight” Gaethje typically lives up to his name, whether it be with a brutal knockout or a gutsy decision victory.
The Arizona native is always a dangerous opponent and UFC Justin Gaethje vs Charles Oliveira odds have him at +140 to spring the upset.
Gaethje’s most recent was a three-round decision victory over Michael Chandler at UFC 268, which followed a submission loss at the hands of Khabib Nurmagomedov. However, he showed his power by winning his previous four fights via knockout.
Gaethje knocked out James Vick, Edson Barboza, Donald Cerrone, and Tony Ferguson in succession, which is an incredible run.
The former NCAA Division 1 wrestler is best known for his standup game, but he is underrated on the ground. He doesn’t have a UFC win via submission, but if Oliveria gets him to the ground, it’s not curtains for the challenger.
However, bettors taking the +140 would love to see the fight standing. Prior to his decision victory over Chandler, Gaethje had never gone the distance, which is unlikely to be the case in this five-round fight.
We think it will extend into the second or third round, but Gaethje will be head-hunting early and that’s his best chance to win. If he can’t land a big shot, he will likely tire and Oliveira will win on points.
As always, Gaethje has strong words ahead of the UFC 274 fight.
“I’m going to knock a hole right in his face,” Gaethje) said. “I’m not here to play mind games or talk s—.
“Luckily for me, Charles is growing a big head right now. He’s going to say some crazy things at the press conference. Hopefully, he thinks he’s infallible. That would be great for me.”
Gaethje will have his supporters and bettors get value odds. He’s always has a puncher’s chance, so we couldn’t rule him out, but Oliveira is the champion for a reason and he’ll be tough to beat.Follow us on Twitter