The 2019 starts in Houston on Tuesday night, with the Astros hosting the Washington Nationals. The Nationals cruised through the St. Louis Cardinals to their first World Series appearance. They now face a tougher test against the Houston Astros, who look to capture their second title in three years. Hard to not like the Astros with their pitching staff in this series, with Gerrit Cole and Justin Verlander in the midst of two of the best seasons in recent memory.
UFC 234 Odds and Predictions
The second big event on the 2019 UFC schedule gets going this weekend as Melbourne plays host to UFC 234. The event is focusing on Middleweights, with the two last fights of the night featuring some of the biggest names in the weight class. While the Middleweight title fight between Robert Whittaker and Kelvin Gastelum is sure to draw plenty of eyes, when UFC news broke of Anderson Silva returning to the ring, the excitement for UFC 234 has grown.
If you you are thinking of betting, check out these tips.
UFC 234 Facts
Robert Whittaker won nine straight fights
Gastelum 3-1-0 (with an NC) since returning to Middleweight
Anderson Silva 11 knockouts, one behind Vitor Belfort for most in UFC history
Last two UFC PPVs in Australia saw one NC and one massive underdog win in title fights
Main Event: Robert Whittaker vs. Kelvin Gastelum
The main event at UFC 234 is between Robert Whittaker and Kelvin Gastelum for the Middleweight Championship. Current champion, Robert Whittaker has the advantage in height and reach, in this fight and needs to use that to his advantage against the wide-bodied Gastelum.
Whittaker, who fights out of New Zealand and Australia, could receive a boost from the home crowd. In his UFC career, Whittaker has fought five times in Australia (including twice in Melbourne), owning a perfect 5-0 record. Add in Whittaker’s quickness, and Whittaker should win this match if he can avoid going to the ground with Gastelum.
Pick: Robert Whittaker (245) to Win
Israel Adesanya vs. Anderson Silva
There is another Middleweight fight drawing plenty of attention at UFC 234. Anderson Silva returns to the Octagon for the first time in two years to face sixth-ranked middleweight Israel Adesanya. The 43-year-old Silva is a moderate underdog against Adesanya.
In Silva’s illustrious UFC career, he has success against the fighting style Adesanya uses (any style more dependent on striking than grappling and wrestling). However, this is not the Silva who owns the longest title reign in UFC history (16 successful title defences from 2006 to 2013). Silva has been out of the game for two years (with injuries, suspensions and cancelled fights all playing a part in his absence). In that time Adesanya is 4-0 as a UFC fighter, including a “Performance of the Night” at UFC 221 (which was also in Australia). Expect Adesanya to have another strong performance at UFC 234 to build his case for a shot at the Middleweight Championship.
Pick: Israel Adesanya (-525) to Win
Rani Yahya vs. Ricky Simon
UFC odds have the fight between Rani Yahya and Ricky Simon as the closest of the night. This fight is only the fourth for Ricky Simon in his UFC career. However, he has impressed in his first three, and a win at UFC 234 could put him on the shortlist for a Bantamweight title fight.
Simon will have his hands full with UFC veteran Rani Yahya. Yahya is 11-3-0 (with one NC) in his UFC career. While Simon is a skillful fighter, in eight years with the UFC, he has yet to establish himself as a star in the Octagon. In a close fight like this one, Simon’s potential in the division could motivate the rising star (or help sway some judges in a close fight).
Pick: Rick Simon (-140) to Win
See below the top sportsbooks where you can wager online and choose the best one for you:
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