Betting Guide for UFC Vegas 31
The UFC can have some weak cards following pay-per-views, and that does apply this week for UFC Vegas 31.
We’ve got seven fighters whose moneyline odds are -215 or shorter, and we have only 11 total fights on the card.
That’ll make it hard to generate value in some of the super lopsided fights, including the main event between Islam Makhachev (-820) over Thiago Moises (+570) and a prelim fight between Amanda Lemos (-550) against Montserrat Conejo (+410).
But even across some of the others, my model is identifying actionable expected value, so which fights are best to bet overall?
Mateusz Gamrot (-215) vs. Jeremy Stephens (+180)
This main card lightweight bout between Mateusz Gamrot (18-1-0) and Jeremy Stephens (28-18-0) comes with a pretty heavy favorite, and that’s Gamrot.
Gamrot is just 1-1-0 in his UFC career, the loss a split-decision against Guram Kutateladze.
By comparison, Stephens is 0-4-0 (1 no contest) in his past five UFC fights and hasn’t fought since a second-round knockout loss to Calvin Kattar at UFC 249 (back in May of 2020). The UFC experience angle clearly belongs to Stephens, whose first UFC fight came in 2007.
However, my model, based on UFC statistics (weighted for predictiveness), is showing Gamrot as 67.4% likely to win, which itself is just in line with the moneyline odds.
More promisingly, the public picks at Tapology (which have tested to be quite accurate) consider Gamrot as 86% likely to get the win. So I see Gamrot as a fair value at worst and an actual value if factoring in the consensus picks.
The consensus picks also show value on Gamrot by knockout/technical knockout (KO/TKO). His odds on FanDuel Sportsbook for a KO/TKO are +195 but should be +157, based on the public picks.
Billy Quarantillo (+136) vs. Gabriel Benitez (-164)
Billy Quarantillo (15-3-0) enters this main card bout as a slight underdog against Gabriel Benitez (22-8-0).
Quarantillo is now 4-1-0 at the UFC level, his loss coming by unanimous decision to Gavin Tucker back in December at UFC 256.
Benitez, in three UFC fights since 2019, has a 1-2-0 record but is coming off of a first-round knockout over Justin Jaynes in December.
Quarantillo, though, is the second-most active striker on this card, landing an average of 7.03 significant strikes per minute at the UFC level with a 64% accuracy rate. He’ll have his work cut out for him against Benitez’s 70% significant strike defense.
Even factoring that in, my model likes Quarantillo at the odds.
And again, the public is heavily backing Quarantillo: Tapology picks have Quarantillo at 70% likely to win. That would imply -223 odds.
As for props, there’s a significant chance for this one to go the distance. While FanDuel Sportsbook lists this fight to end by points at -165, the public picks show -422 odds for this fight to be decided by the judges.
Miles Johns (-190) vs. Anderson dos Santos (+160)
Miles Johns (11-1-0) is getting some love from bookmakers at the -190 odds, but it doesn’t really even come close to how much the public (93% at Tapology) or my model (72.2%) likes him.
Anderson dos Santos (21-8-0) got off to a slow start in the UFC with two unanimous decision losses before righting the ship and scoring a first-round guillotine against Martin Day back in November.
The submission specialist (dos Santos has 12 submissions in 21 career wins) could test Johns. However, Johns has stuffed 7 of 8 takedown attempts against him at the UFC level, and dos Santos has secured only 3 of 16 takedown attempts himself.
Johns is a positive expected value pick outright. The extra value can be had with Johns to win by points (+120 at FanDuel Sportsbook but -231 based on the consensus picks).