International Fight Week is already here as we mark the halfway point of the 2023 UFC schedule. UFC 290 is taking place in Las Vegas this weekend to headline the festivities with a card full of unreal fights.
The headlining bout is a featherweight title fight between P4P great Alexander Volkanovski and interim title holder Yair Rodriguez. The world-class skill that Volkanovski has in all aspects of MMA, going up against the dynamic striking and submission ability of Rodriguez, makes for a great fight to watch.
The rest of the card is filled with great fights. The co-main event is the flyweight world title fight between champion Brandon Moreno and his familiar foe Alexandre Pantoja. Along with that, we get to watch the great Robert Whittaker take on exciting rising contender Dricus Du Plessis.
With many more fights filling out the card from top to bottom, let’s see what the best bets are for this weekend to really bang the book.
Main Event – Volkanovski vs. Rodriguez
Starting at this amazing main event bout, Volkanovksi is arguably the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world right now and he is defending his featherweight bout against the interim title holder Yair Rodriguez.
Rodriguez is a Mexican martial artist that has transformed the sport of MMA in Mexican culture. With the help of current UFC champs Brandon Moreno and Alexa Grasso, they have paved a path for the Mexican youth to pursue MMA.
The slight edge goes to Volkanovski in this one because of his all-around game and fight IQ. The fighting system that he uses is second to none, and he trains with such an incredible and supportive team both in Australia and when he visits New Zealand and City Kickboxing.
Our prediction for this one has to stay in Volkanovski’s corner. He is too good to bet against right now in his career. If Rodriguez gets the job done, it will most likely be an incredible KO that catches Volk.
Other Key Fights
UFC 290 almost has too many fights to keep track of and get to all of them. But one of the most interesting is the featured prelim bout between future UFC hall of famer Robbie Lawler and fan-favorite Nikko Price.
These two never turn in a boring performance, and this one will most definitely be a bloody 15 minutes.
Another great matchup on the UFC 290 prelims is the Jimmy Crute vs. Alonzo Menifield rematch. Their first fight was decided by a DRAW, and this one will be a barn burner as well. Sit back and enjoy this one, as this is too close to bet on.
The sleeper pick of the night has to be Dan Hooker beating Jalin Turner. This main card lightweight bout is amazing and it’s confusing how other fights are overshadowing them. Any other event would probably have this on the poster.
Hooker is believed to be out of his fighting prime by many, but he’s got a new and improved mindset and has taken his career to the next level, according to people close to him. When Hooker is at his best, he can truly beat anybody in the world, and this is a great underdog pick.
If you really want to bang the book, put a parlay together with guys like Tatsuro Taira, Jack Della Maddalena, Bo Nickal, and Robert Whittaker winning. These are all very skilled fighters with very favorable matchups this weekend. A parlay with all of them winning turns into pretty good odds and a nice payout when they all hit.
BetOnline has Bo Nickal as the most favored fighter in UFC history at -2500 odds. This is a historic night for him and the UFC, and he should get the job done with the chance to showcase his skills for the world to see.