UFC 279 Prop Bets: Short Straws and Even Shorter Fights

Sportsbooks Expect Quick and Vicious Finishes This Saturday

The “F” in UFC may as well stand for “Finishing” as the promotion has been doing its best to create matchups that guarantee one. Finishes sell. Most fans do not pay hard-earned money to see two martial arts engage in a 25-minute chess match. What they want is blood, violence, and someone tapping out or passing out. As such, the sportsbooks’ UFC 279 prop bets are filled with lines that expect early finishes from most of the card’s 13 fights.

Chimaev-Diaz Headlines UFC 279’s Squash Fights

Khamzat Chimaev and Nate Diaz are UFC 279’s headliners. But instead of what could be a competitive bout, this one has the makings of a squash fight. The unbeaten Chimaev is the biggest favorite to main event a UFC pay-per-view in over three years and he’s doing it at the expense of Diaz, who is potentially departing the promotion.

The UFC 279 prop bets expect this fight to not go beyond the second round (+140) with a knockout (-120) as the most likely outcome. That favors Chimaev who has won six of his 11 bouts via KO. Diaz has only been TKO’d twice in his 18-year career and one came via a doctor stoppage due to a cut. However, the usually durable boxer is 37 years old and has been roughed up in four of his last five fights.

At -450, it is implied that Chimaev has over an 81 percent chance of finishing Diaz. Anything else will be quite an upset. But don’t count out the Stockton native as Diaz has almost always been an underdog. In fact, he has won six of his last 11 fights as one and those who backed him would be up over $600 if they placed $100 on him each time. Diaz to turn the tables on Chimaev by finishing him pays at 17-2 (+850).

Short Works For More Big Favorites

Chimaev closes out UFC 279. Prior to his fight, expect others to set the table for him by way of quick and brutal finishes. Jailton Almeida is the event’s second-largest favorite as he takes on Anton Turkalj, who is filling in on the short notice. The Brazilian, who is built like a Terminator, is expected to win in round 1 at -120. That implies a greater than 54 percent probability.

Earlier in the card, Ion Cutelaba takes on Johnny Walker in a battle of explosive light heavyweights. If you combine their fights, 65 percent of them have ended in a finish. Both Walker and Cutelaba have also been finished in the first round in five of their last seven combined losses. And yet, Cutelaba is the 2-1 favorite. He finishes Walker per the UFC 279 prop bets.

And then there is Li Jingliang. Known as “The Leech”, the Chinese fighter is a heavy puncher and owes eight of his 11 UFC victories to his fists. He’s as much as a 3-1 favorite as he takes on Tony Ferguson, a former interim lightweight champ who is moving up in weight. Michael Chandler kicked Ferguson to hell just four months ago so there is a good chance (+125) Li hands Ferguson his second straight knockout loss.

Actual Martial Arts Matchups Cleanse The Palate

UFC 279 isn’t all about the adrenaline rush of knockouts and submissions. The books lined several fights to be fairly competitive beginning with Darian Weeks and Yohan Lainesse. The welterweights are the curtain-jerkers on the UFC schedule and nearly even on the sportsbooks. UFC prop bets are all over the place for this one.

In terms of women’s MMA, Irene Aldana takes on Macy Chiasson as a potential title eliminator. Aldana is favored close to 2-1 in a fight that is most likely going to a decision (-175). However, it won’t be shocking if Aldana knocks out Chiasson as her last two victories have come via TKO.

And in a featherweight tilt, Hakeem Dawodu fights Julian Erosa. The odds favor Dawodu just north of the 2-1 range as he aims for a consecutive victory as Erosa goes for a third straight. Like the Weeks-Lainesse fight, the UFC 279 betting odds are all over the place here as far as the outcome of the fight with a Dawodu decision lined at +140 as the prohibitive “favorite”.

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