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Betting Preview of UFC 245 With Odds and Picks for the Best Main Card Fights

By Adam Haynes in MMA & UFC
| November 9, 2022 7:18 am PST

UFC 245 is going to be crazy.

The card kicks off on December 14 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. We have three titles on the line on the night, with a few former champions putting their hands up for glory.

Kamaru Usman and Colby Covington will headline the card with one of the most highly anticipated welterweight title fights in UFC history. These guys are pretty much as close to the perfect matchup as you can get, and… well, they can’t stand each other.

Then, we have a co-main in the form of Max Holloway vs. Alexander Volkanovski for the UFC’s featherweight crown. Holloway is looking to make it to four defenses in a row but will be pushed hard by the number one contender.

Let’s not forget Amanda Nunes vs. Germaine de Randamie 2, which will have the women’s bantamweight strap on the line. These two will be baying for blood when they enter the cage in Vegas on the night.

If that wasn’t enough, we have Marlon Moraes welcoming former featherweight champion and future Hall of Famer Jose Aldo to the bantamweight vision for the first time.

Speaking of Hall of Fame fighters, we have a guy that has already made it there in Urijah Faber taking on the dangerous Petr Yan.

Ladies and gentlemen, it’s time to break down the five biggest fights scheduled for UFC 245. I have taken odds from BetOnline’s sportsbook for all the fights below, but keep in mind those odds are subject to change.

Let’s start this UFC 245 betting preview with the main event, Usman vs. Covington.

Kamaru Usman vs. Colby Covington

Kamaru Usman-160
Colby Covington+140

I can’t think of many UFC bouts between two fighters of predominant wrestling styles that have ever captured the imagination like Usman vs. Covington.

These two guys are basically as close in ability as you can get. They hate each others’ guts. And to make things really weird, they just have so many similarities that it almost feels like they were meant to fight at this precise time.

Usman, the promotion’s incumbent welterweight champion, shocked a lot of fans when he beat Tyron Woodley to take the crown at UFC 235 in March. It wasn’t so much the win that took people by surprise, but just how easy he made it look over Woodley.

Covington won the interim welterweight strap following an impressive victory over Rafael dos Anjos in June 2023. That was the day that the American proved he wasn’t messing around.

When it comes to the big fight on December 14, I think there will be a number of attributes that these two guys share. They are not known as flashy strikers or knockout artists, but high energy wrestlers with a lot in the tank.

Covington and Usman have a combined nine decision wins in their last ten fights, with the former taking each of his last five wins on the judges’ scorecards.

As I mentioned earlier, these guys are so freakishly similar that predicting the winner is no laughing matter. Aside from their physical attributes, skills, and gas tanks, they are also 15-1 in their professional careers.

It gets stranger, too. The only loss on Usman’s record came against Jose Caceres, a guy who Covington beat by decision. Covington’s sole loss came to Warlley Alves, who Usman beat on the judges’ scorecards.

This fight will be intense and an absolute test for both men. Wrestlers have always done well at welterweight, so it is no surprise to see these two pretty much at the top of the pile at 170.

I’m picking Covington to win this fight. I have stated my reasons in my Usman vs. Covington fight preview, so check that out for a rundown on why the title could change hands before the year is out.

  • Colby Covington

Max Holloway vs. Alexander Volkanovski

Alexander Volkanovski+145
Max Holloway-170

UFC featherweight king Max Holloway beat everyone there was to beat at 145 pounds on his way to the top of the pile.

Still, the life of a champion means that the competition never ends; it just keeps growing with new challengers vying to take the crown.

One of the most impressive featherweights to emerge as a threat to Holloway’s title is a former rugby player, Alexander Volkanovski. This guy means business and has his eyes on UFC gold.

Volkanovski is riding a 17-fight winning streak in professional MMA and is currently 7-0 in the UFC. The 31-year-old has established himself as one of the men to watch in the division following two huge wins over Jose Aldo and Chad Mendes.

There are many tipping Volkanovski to have too much power for Holloway, but — the Aldo and Mendes wins aside — I don’t think we have seen him take on the same level of elite competition that Holloway did on his run to the title.

Of course, it can take just one fight to attain champion status, and anything can happen on the night. Holloway will certainly know this and will be amply prepared for what could be the featherweight fight of the year.

Holloway’s last loss came at 155 pounds in an interim lightweight title bout against Dustin Poirier. He has not been beaten at featherweight since Conor McGregor took him to a decision in 2013.

Max Holloway is the king of the 145-pound division and looks one of the most stable champions in the world. It is going to take a lot for Volkanovski to displace him, and I have covered why in my Holloway vs. Volkanovski breakdown.

As you might have gathered, I’m picking Holloway to win this fight at UFC 245.

  • Max Holloway

Amanda Nunes vs. Germaine de Randamie 2

Amanda Nunes-275
Germaine de Randamie+235

The greatest female fighter of all time will be putting her bantamweight title on the line when she faces off against Germaine de Randamie over six years following their first encounter.

Nunes won that fight by way of first-round TKO, which would end up being the last time the Dutchwoman lost inside the cage. Well, she has only fought five times since then, so that’s not really saying a lot.

Still, since then, de Randamie did go on to win the inaugural women’s featherweight title against Holly Holm, even if she should have been disqualified for repeated shots after the bell.

The UFC stripped de Randamie of that title when she refused to fight Cris Cyborg, which, in all fairness, you couldn’t really blame her for. After all, who would want to have gone toe to toe with a rampaging Cyborg who hadn’t lost a bout since 2005?

Amanda Nunes. That’s who.

Nunes’ last appearance inside the Octagon saw her bludgeon the seemingly unbeatable Cyborg, battering her from pillar to post to earn the win and etch her name in the MMA history books as the baddest lady to ever live.

The Brazilian has beaten the who’s who of elite female competition and continues to improve with every single fight she has. There is no doubt that she is the world’s leading female mixed martial artist, and she will show just why, once more, on December 14.

Personally, I don’t think Nunes will be beaten before she decides to call it a day in the UFC.

  • Amanda Nunes

Marlon Moraes vs. Jose Aldo

Marlon Moraes-155
Jose Aldo+135

Jose Aldo makes his UFC bantamweight debut against fellow Brazilian Marlon Moraes at UFC 245.

Aldo, arguably the greatest featherweight in the history of the game, will be dropping down in weight at the tender age of 33 to attempt a run at the title currently held by Henry Cejudo.

You would have to think that Aldo would be close to next in line for a shot at Cejudo should he manage to beat Moraes on the night. That task, in itself, is hardly going to be a formality.

Cejudo is 5-2 in the UFC and entered the promotion on a 13-fight win streak that was partly amassed as the former World Series of Fighting’s 135-pound lord. He has made an impression in the UFC and is also trying to earn a shot at Cejudo’s title.

Well, another shot at the title.

Moraes lost his first battle with Cejudo for the vacant bantamweight strap at UFC 238 in June of this year. He will be gunning to avenge that loss, however, but will need to get past Aldo first.

Both of these guys like the fight on the feet. They are both excellent strikers with solid Muay Thai bases, so this one should not fail in giving the fans what they want.

Expect fireworks from Moraes and Aldo, who are two guys with a common purpose — getting their hands on that 135-pound title.

Who wins?

Well, I think Aldo, despite the weight cut, just might do enough to have his hand raised at the end of the night, so I see Aldo as a good UFC 245 betting pick.

  • Jose Aldo

Petr Yan vs. Urijah Faber

Urijah Faber+350
Petr Yan-450

Urijah Faber shocked the world of MMA when he decided to return to the UFC earlier this year.

Faber knocked out Ricky Simon in July, overcoming a thirteen-year age gap and a couple of years of ring rust to get the job done in just one round. It was an impressive performance, it must be said.

Faber enters this contest as the +350 underdog against Petr Yan.

Yan enters this contest as a sizeable -450 favorite to get the job done over the UFC Hall of Fame fighter. In his last three bouts, the Russian dispatched of Jimmie Rivera, John Dodson, and Douglas Silva de Andrade, catching the attention of fans in the process.

Yan will be desperate to get Faber’s name on his resume as he looks to establish himself in the upper tiers of the bantamweight division.

Currently ranked as the fourth-best bantamweight on the roster, he can move into title contention with a convincing win on the night.

Faber, on the other hand, will likely jump into the top 5 from his current position of 12 on the rankings with a win.

It seems inconceivable that Faber can earn a title shot — his first since June 2016 — at the age of 40. But stranger things have happened. Still, it’s not likely, is it?

I would love nothing more than to see Urijah Faber become the oldest UFC champion in history, but he would have to beat one of the division’s most talented guys to get that opportunity.

The UFC bookies rate his chances as very slim. I have to agree.

Yan wins this UFC 245 bout.

  • Petr Yan

Wrap Up

So, there you have it, boys and girls.

UFC 245 should be an absolute belter of an event, and I cannot wait to just sit back and enjoy the fights. When it comes to consistent, quality fights, us MMA betting fans are really spoiled for choice.

On the subject of choice, there is plenty of time to get your bets on through one of our selected MMA betting sites, so don’t be shy and give one a try.

Thanks for checking out my UFC 245 betting predictions. I’ll be catching up with you guys soon for a preview of some of the biggest fights of 2020 and a whole lot more. So, make sure to keep your eyes peeled for those.

Enjoy the fights!

Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA and boxing.

A self-confessed sports fanatic, when Adam is not watching and writing about rugby, soccer, Gaelic Games, and F1, he can be often be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a big fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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