Another star-studded event, the UFC heads to Abu Dhabi for a strong card of action at UFC 294 at the Etihad Arena. In terms of UFC 294 betting, the top two fights on the card present an interesting rundown of action. The main event of the evening features a UFC Lightweight Championship rematch between current champion Islam Makhachev and former champion Charles Oliveira. These fighters previously locked horns at UFC 280 in a bout that ended with the former claiming the title by way of second-round submission. Meanwhile, in the penultimate matchup of the night, Paulo Costa takes on Khamzat Chimaev in a blistering battle that will have huge ramifications for the UFC middleweight division.
In this article, SBS will be going over what to look for from each fighter, a predicted winner in each bout, and also some more notes and information about UFC 294 betting.
|UFC 294 Main Event Bouts||The Pick|
|Islam Makhachev (c) vs. Charles Oliveira||Makhachev||-335||-335||-335|
|Paulo Costa vs. Khamzat Chimaev||Chimaev||-335||-335||-335|
Fighter Spotlight: Islam Makhachev
The reigning UFC Lightweight Champion, Makhachev is one of the most feared fighters in the sport. With a record of 24-1, he has outgunned his competition with a huge repertoire of moves. Since losing to Adriano Martins in 2015, the Russian competitor has been on a tear, winning 12 fights in a row. Moreover, he is coming off back-to-back Fight of the Night/Performance of the Night showings in his last two bouts. His second to last contest was the submission win over Oliveira to win the UFC Lightweight title at UFC 280 and his last bout was an emphatic unanimous decision title defense over Alexander Volkanovski.
Fighter Spotlight: Charles Oliveira
Opposing Makhachev is Oliveira, a fighter who needs little introduction as one of the most dominant in recent memory. As regular readers of this space are aware, the Brazilian holds multiple UFC records, notably the most submission wins in UFC history (16), most finishes at 20, and also the most fight bonuses at 19. Following his loss to Makhachev, Oliveira rebounded at UFC 289 with a sensational first-round knockout of Beneil Dariush. Not only was this bout acknowledged as the Performance of the Night, but it also extended Oliveira’s UFC record of most finishes to 20. If he can get Makhachev into a precarious spot during their match, he could have a great shot at his 22nd submission win.
Prediction: This matchup has the makings of a classic that should go down to the wire. With that in mind, take the hotter hand in Makhachev to win.
Fighter Spotlight: Paulo Costa
A fighter with a sensational record of 14-2, Costa is coming off a Fight of the Night victory over UFC veteran Luke Rockhold at UFC 278. A former contender for the UFC Middleweight Championship (he lost to Israel Adesanya at UFC 253), Costa could return to title contention with a win in this fight. With the majority of his victories coming by way of knockout (11), he has shown sensational power and also a penchant for scoring high on the judge’s scorecards. Of course, with his last bout occurring over a year ago, he will have had ample rest to get ready for Chimaev.
Fighter Spotlight: Khamzat Chimaev
An undefeated fighter with a 12-0 record, Chimaev is perhaps the next star in the UFC given his dominance in one bout after another. With six knockout wins and five submission victories, the 29-year-old has blazed a trail through the middleweight division. The record holder for the quickest turnaround between UFC wins in the modern era (10 days), Chimaev is a fantastic fighter to always keep an eye on. This will perhaps be his toughest challenge yet, but given his track record, Chimaev should be up for the test.
Prediction: In what should be a fun bout to watch, take Chimaev to win here and keep the good times rolling along on his middleweight division ascent.
After you are all squared away regarding your UFC 294 picks, SBS has your back with a wide variety of information to keep the good times rolling along. Of course, for even more information on the sport at hand, make sure to check out the UFC betting sites rundown where you can find the latest news and notes on MMA. Moreover, if you are trying to juice up and make the best UFC 294 bets, then make sure to peruse our VIP sports betting sites guide which goes over the perks of VIP wagering, and see if it is the right fit for you. Finally, on an additional note, our best bonus betting sites breakdown goes over a ton of great information like the latest welcome bonus offers. Using this page and some other resources, you can definitely make sure to get the most out of your UFC 294 bets.