Betting Guide for UFC 264: Poirier vs. McGregor 3

There are definitely some engaging fights on the UFC 264 card, but it all starts (and ends) with the third fight between Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor.

Poirier (-126) actually comes in as the betting favorite in that fight on FanDuel Sportsbook over McGregor (-102).

And in total, only 3 of the 13 fights on the card have a favorite listed at heavier than -205, so we don’t have too many spots that are automatically tough to back based on the bookmaker odds.

So, which bets look best for the main event — and what about the rest of the card?

Dustin Poirier (-126) vs. Conor McGregor (-102)

McGregor (22-5-0) won the first fight between he and Poirier (27-6-0) with a first-round technical knockout (TKO) back in September 2014 at UFC 178.

Then, in January at UFC 257, it was Poirier who pulled the upset and scored a second-round TKO of his own.

Poirier is ranked as the number-one contender in the lightweight division and as the sixth-ranked pound-for-pound fighter in the UFC. McGregor is fifth in the lightweight division and has gone just 3-3-0 in his past six UFC fights (spanning back to March 2016).

My model actually gives Poirier a 64.0% chance to secure his second straight win against McGregor, which is well above what we need at -126 to deem him a valuable bet for an outright win.

That 64.0% win rate is right where the public is at Tapology, for what it’s worth, and consensus picks have fared rather well long term.

The finish expectations from the public for this fight point to value on Poirier to win by KO/TKO, suggesting the line should be +133 rather than +200.

There’s also expected value on the fight to end by KO/TKO either way, according to the consensus picks, which imply -282 odds of the fight to end as such. The actual KO/TKO odds are -240.

Tai Tuivasa (-142) vs. Greg Hardy (+112)

This heavyweight bout between Tai Tuivasa (12-3-0) and Greg Hardy (7-3-0, 1 no contest) really has two ways of ending: KO/TKO and going the distance.

Of Tuivasa’s 15 professional fights, 11 ended by knockout, and 2 ended by decision. For Hardy, 7 his 10 fights have ended by knockout.

But before we get to finishes and method of victory props, my model likes Tuivasa’s outright win chances, giving him a 60.1% chance to get the victory. That gives us slight expected value overall, so that’s the initial lean at reasonable -142 odds.

For the finishing bonuses there’s heavy value on this one to end by KO/TKO (listed at -165 on FanDuel Sportsbook). The consensus picks imply KO/TKO odds of -308, around 75.5%.

We also see value on Tuivasa to win by KO/TKO (+155 on FanDuel Sportsbook), which the public likes as -155 odds.

Jennifer Maia (-205) vs. Jessica Eye (+158)

I’m going to jump to the prelims for this final one.

Jennifer Maia (18-7-1) is getting a lot of love in my model in her fight against Jessica Eye (15-9-0). Her overall win odds are 70.3%, a number that slightly outperforms her moneyline odds of -205.

Maia is just 1-2-0 over her past three UFC fights, twice losing on pay-per-view cards. Her first loss in that span came against Katlyn Chookagian, the current number-two contender in the women’s flyweight division, in a catchweight bout. The second loss came in her most recent fight, a unanimous decision loss to Valentina Shevchenko for the UFC women’s flyweight title.

Eye’s record isn’t free of losses, either, and she’s won just one of her past four fights. Eye also lost to Shevchenko in a flyweight title bout and has dropped two straight via unanimous decision.

There’s a pretty obvious consensus angle for a method of victory prop, and that’s for Maia to win by points (+105 on FanDuel Sportsbook, implying odds of 48.8%).

The picks at Tapology like Maia to win by points 71.2% of the time.