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Whittaker vs Adesanya UFC 243 betting odds and predictions

Whittaker vs Adesanya UFC odds

The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to Australia this weekend for UFC 243 at Marvel Stadium in Melbourne, Victoria.

Robert Whittaker is the star attraction and will have plenty of local support for his UFC Middleweight Championship bout with New Zealand’s Israel Adesanya.

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Two more Kiwis feature on the main card, with Dan Hooker taking on Al Iaquinta and Luke Jumeau making his long-awaited return against Dhiego Lima.

The Aussie crowd will get behind Tai Tuivasa for his clash with Sergey Spivak, while Justin Tafa can also expect plenty of backing for his UFC debut against Yorgan De Castro.

Let’s look at the latest UFC 243 odds and see where the value lies on the main card.

Robert Whittaker vs Israel Adesanya

Whittaker – -123.46
Adesanya – +100

The UFC 243 Main Event betting patterns make for interesting.

Whittaker opened as the bookies’ favourite, but the tables turned when big money started coming for Adesanya in the week leading up the fight.

The market has settled down since, with most Australian bookmakers giving the local lad a slight edge.

Both fighters boast impressive records, with Whittaker undefeated in nine bouts and Adesanya yet to lose in 17 career starts.

But while ‘The Reaper’ is now a veteran of 13 UFC appearances, most of his Kiwi challenger’s wins have come on the journeyman circuits of Australia, New Zealand and China.

That experience will count for something as Whittaker defends the UFC Middleweight Championship in his home country.

Neither fighter has ever won by submission in the Ultimate Fighting Championship, so put your money on a KO or points decision.

Robert Whittaker to win by knockout or points – -120.48 at Bovada

Al Iaquinta vs Dan Hooker

Iaquinta – +139
Hooker – -172.41

The penultimate fight of UFC 243 is a lightweight bout between two men on somewhat different trajectories.

Hooker has won five of his last six fights, with the only blemish coming courtesy of a vicious body punch from Edson Barboza in Milwaukee last December.

Iaquinta, however, has lost two out of three bouts since April last year, although one of those was an honourable defeat on points to Khabib Nurmagomedov.

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Hooker is the rightful favourite and should get the result, but the question is whether he will go for hits or holds.

While the New Zealander is known for his knockout blows, as per his last three UFC wins, seven of his 18 career victories have come via submission.

That said, there is a good chance Hooker will let Iaquinta swing away and back himself to get inside the American’s defence.

Dan Hooker to win by knockout or submission – +200 at Bovada

Tai Tuivasa vs Sergey Spivak

Tuivasa – -454.55
Spivak – +335

This is probably the easiest result to pick of the five fights on the main card at UFC 243.

Tuivasa comes into this bout on the back consecutive defeats to Junior dos Santos and Blagoy Ivanov, but the 26-year-old Australian has shown plenty across his five hitouts at UFC level.

And while Spivak was unbeaten in nine fights prior to his franchise debut at UFC Fight Night 151, ‘The Polar Bear’ lasted a mere 50 seconds against Walt Harris.

Tuivasa has a 7-1 record in his home country, including a pair of Australian Fighting Championship wins in Melbourne, so he will be hard to beat.

Spivak may look to grapple in a bid to stymie his opponent’s hitting game, but ‘Bam Bam’ is all about the killer blow.

Tai Tuivasa by knockout – -222.22 at Bovada

Luke Jumeau vs Dhiego Lima

Jumeau – +122
Lima – -149.25

Jumeau has made a solid start to his UFC career, winning two of his first three fights.

The Kiwi welterweight defeated Dominique Steele on debut in June 2017 but lost Shinsho Anzai in Japan later that year.

His last fight was nearly two years ago at UFC 221 in Perth, where ‘The Jedi’ overcame Daichi Abe by unanimous decision.

Injury has kept him out of the octagon since then, so it will be interesting to see how he handles a somewhat unpredictable opponent.

Lima won his last two fights, but only after losing three on the bounce.

The Brazilian has drifted in and out of the UFC circuit over the years and his record doesn’t inspire confidence, so there is value in backing the outsider here.

Luke Jumeau to win – +122

Justin Tafa vs Yorgan De Castro

Tafa – -131.58
De Castro – +107

The opening bout of the main card sees two heavyweight prospects making their UFC debut.

Tafa has three wins from three on the XFC circuit in Australia, while De Castro is unbeaten in five fights as a pro.

Both are knockout merchants, so we can expect to see fists and feet flying all over the place.

De Castro probably has the stronger CV, which includes bouts with CES MMA, NEF MMA and Dana White’s Contender Series.

But Tafa will have the crowd, and that could prove pivotal in a clash between two rookies.

Justin Tafa to win – -131.58 at Bovada

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