2021 was a very interesting year if you are a UFC fan. It began in January with a bang, with the first official UFC event of the year being a rematch between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor. The first event, held all the way back in 2014, was a very enjoyable clash between the two fighters. Many millions turned in at home, with many of these fans also placing bets on the outcome. In the end, it was McGregor who came out on top, as during that period he was usually the oddsmakers favourite.
Obviously 7 years had passed since that bout, so the betting odds were no longer always in McGregor’s favour, following several losses. For those searching for UFC odds pre fight, they would have been torn as to who to bet on. In the end, it was Poirier who came out on top, winning in the 2nd round via a TKO, pleasing everyone who bet on this outcome. They then fought again at UFC 264, with the former Irish champion hoping to bounce back. Unfortunately, almost the complete opposite happened, as the fight was called off by the doctor in the 1st round, after Poirier had shattered McGregor’s tibia.
Other important fights during 2021 was the welterweight title rematch between Kamaru Usman and Jorge Masvidal at UFC 261, where Usman successfully defended his title. We also got to witness the featherweight bout between Alexander Volkanovski and Brian Ortega, which took place at UFC266. The fight went the full 5 rounds, and in the end the win was awarded to Volkanovski, by a unanimous points decision. It meant Volkanovski retained his featherweight champion status, and is currently ranked number 2 in the UFC men’s pound-for-pound rankings.
While all that action is exciting, we need to be looking forward to what is coming up. There is still a final UFC Fight Night event due to take place in December, between Derrick Lewis and Chris Daukaus, but most of the action is now scheduled for 2022. Let’s take a look at some of the main events that have already been announced for next year.
The ultimate fighting calendar currently only goes up to the end of March, but the organisers have still managed to pack in a number of top events into the first 3 months of the year.
On the 22nd of January, at the Honda Center in Anaheim, California, we are going to be treated to UFC 270, which sees the heavyweight championship bout between Francis Ngannou and Ciryl Gane. This is the headliner event for good reason, as Ngannou and Gane are two of the biggest names in the heavyweight division right now. The Cameroonian is the current champ (having beaten Stipe Miocic at UFC 260) while Gane is currently undefeated in MMA, winning all 10 of his fights.
The betting odds for this fight are incredibly close, with some sportsbooks having them as joint favourites at 10/11. Right now, there really is very little to choose between the 2 men. It is certainly a bout that UFC fans would be foolish to miss, as we predict it to be one of the most exciting and intriguing heavyweight fights for many years.
Also on the undercard for UFC 270 is the flyweight championship fight, which sees the current champion Brandon Moreno takae on Deveson Figueiredo. It is the 3rd time these two have fought, and will hopefully be as entertaining as the last 2 clashes.
Just a few weeks later on the 12th of February, UFC 271 is scheduled to take place at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. There are several fights that have already been announced, though we are still waiting for the full list to come through.
We do know for sure that there will be a middleweight championship title bout between the current champ Israel Adesanya and Robert Whittaker. The two fighters previously locked horns at UFC 243, and it was Adesanya who knocked down his rival to capture the middleweight title. Adesanya is currently -260 to retain his title here, so is the clear favourite with the sportsbooks who are offering odds on this fight.
Less is known about UFC 272, which is due to take place on the 5th of March, though the venue has yet to be announced. The only bouts that have been confirmed so far are in the men’s featherweight division, where Byrce Mitchell and Edson Barboza are due to square off against each other, while in the women’s flyweight category, Jessica Eye will be fighting Mnon Fiorot.
There will be several more events to be slotted into UFC 272, including an as yet unknown headline event. So rest assured there will be plenty of action to watch and bet on on March the 5th.
Roberto Villa is the CEO, Founder, Executive Writer, Senior Editor of FightBook MMA. Has a passion for Combat Sports and also a podcast host for Sitting Ringside. He’s also a former MMA fighter and Kickboxer.
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