Ultimate Fighting Championship brought us some of the most thrilling fights this year and continues to do so with this Usman vs. Masvidal rematch. UFC 261 will be headlined by the welterweight title bout between champion Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal.
More than that, Usman will defend his belt as he faces the persistent Masvidal for the second time in one of the most anticipated rivalry fights this year. The latter gets another shot at facing the champion with more prep time since his unanimous decision loss to Usman in July 2020. And despite the results, it was Usman who pushed for the rematch. The fight goes down on April 24 at the VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena in Jacksonville, Florida.
NitroBetting brings you a closer look at the main event. Here, you will find detailed information on both fighters, the main talking points, updated UFC odds, and our very own expert betting predictions. Strengthen your picks with the help of this UFC 261 preview and work your way to winning bets.
UFC 261 Event Info
- When: April 24, 2021, 10:00 PM ET (Main Card)
- Where: VyStar Veterans Memorial Arena, Jacksonville, Florida
- TV: ESPN+
- Live Stream: UFC Fight Pass
UFC 261 Main Card Odds
|Kamaru Usman||-476||Jorge Masvidal||+332|
|Zhang Weili||-204||Rose Namajunas||+157|
|Valentina Schevchenko||-435||Jessica Andrade||+308|
|Uriah Hall||-111||Chris Weidman||-115|
|Anthony Smith||+162||Jim Crute||-208|
Usman vs. Masvidal 2 Preview
- MMA Record: 18-1-0
The Nigerian fighter is looking ahead of UFC 261 approaches. Heis now holding onto a 17-fight winning streak and boasts a perfect 13-0 in the octagon. He is fresh off his third title defense fight last February against Gilbert Burns. Although he got wobbled early into the match, Usman was able to secure a stoppage, knocking out Burns 34 seconds into the third round.
Usman eyes the rematch to further cement his dominance over Masvidal. He comes into the octagon as the fight favorite. But this doesn’t necessarily mean a surefire win for the 33-year old fighter, rather a motivation for additional peace of mind after he was not 100% convinced with the previous results of their fight.
Usman is considered one of the most effective fighters in the sport when it comes to grinding out victories. Seven of his last ten matches were settled by decision, with each one being unanimous, putting to light his versatility yet relentless drive to take charge of the fights. Expect Usman to attempt to show a prowess of skill offensively and defensively to land more strikes and more points.
- MMA Record: 35-14-0
Masvidal’s first match against Usman came on short notice, just six days before the event. After the fight, both parties agreed to a rematch as Usman was not happy with his performance at the time. Ultimately, it gave Masvidal more time to prepare for the second bout, and that he did. The American fighter dug deep and went on to a full camp.
Prior to his loss to Usman, Masvidal had recorded six wins in 10 fights. Nonetheless, Masvidal still ranks No. 4 in the saturated Welterweight division and holds the record for the fastest knockout in UFC history with his powerful flying knee KO against Ben Askren just north of five seconds into the first round.
Furthermore, Masvidal is seen as the more experienced fighter of the two. He has 35 victories to date and more time to prepare for the fight. With smooth transitions and direct engagements during a fight, he can create explosive moments that can surprise any fighter in his weight division. He might not have the striking edge, his accuracy, punch selection, and submissions will get him by.
Usman vs. Masvidal UFC 261 Betting Trends
- Usman won his three previous title defense fights.
- Usman holds an 18-1 record, nine of which have been stoppages with eight knockouts and one submission.
- Usman averages 3.22 takedowns per 15 minutes.
- Masvidal records 18 wins by stoppage, 16 knockouts, and 2 submissions.
- Masvidal’s losses include 11 to the judges’ scorecards, five of which were split decisions.
- Masvidal is 2-1 in his last three fights, two of which were knockouts.
UFC 261 Expert Betting Predictions
On paper, Usman is the choice for those looking for safe outright bets. But that’s not to say that Masvidal doesn’t stand a chance against the “Nigerian Nightmare”. If he’s to score a knockout, it’s likely not going to happen early. He’ll get a feel of Usman first then picks his spots in trying to sneak in strikes. He could come away with a decision win if he could rack up points with some clean shots standing up, while also showing better takedown defense this time around.
On the other hand, if Usman keeps his cool and his usual approach, not a lot of fighters can make him uneasy. He is good on the counter and his endurance is impressive, so a decision victory stays on the table. In the end, UFC 261 offers us the thrill that we seek as well as opportunities to capitalize in this Usman vs. Masvidal fight.
Be sure to check out for all the latest MMA betting odds and lines at out online Bitcoin sportsbook before the event kicks off this weekend. Check out our Bitcoin sports betting guides and news sections for more previews of some of the top games and events to watch and bet on.
*All odds stated are subject to change without prior notice