Best UFC Bets: Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker 2 Picks

Eric Uribe
By , Updated on: Apr 9, 2024 08:00 PM
Best UFC Bets: Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker 2 Picks

For the first time in almost a month, we have ourselves a UFC fight card to put money on. Why not start 2024 off with some big UFC betting wins? That’s what we believe we have. After analyzing the upcoming card, we’ve hand-picked three bets to make for UFC Fight Night. Keep on reading to get them!

  • What: UFC Fight Night
  • When: Saturday, January 13
  • Where: UFC Apex in Las Vegas, Nevada

Magomed Ankalaev vs. Johnny Walker Betting Pick

Two lightweight title contenders main event this UFC card. It’s a rematch of UFC 294, a fight that ended in no contest after three minutes due to an illegal knee by Ankalaev. UFC is running this back two months later and Ankalaev is a runaway -470 favorite. There’s hardly any money to make off that betting line which is why we’re betting the Ankalaev-Walker over/under instead. Here’s how the best UFC betting sites have it pegged:

Over 1.5 Rounds-135-135-135
Under 1.5 Rounds+115+115+115

The October matchup gave us a hint of how this bout could go. While it was cut short, we did see Ankalaev take Walker down at one point. Grappling is a huge advantage for Ankalaev against Walker, and he’d be smart to lean on it. Though, the 6-foot-6 Walker is the much bigger fighter so it’ll likely be difficult for Ankalaev to hold him down for long.

Ankalaev’s gameplan is likely this: wrestle Walker down, not to submit him, but to wear him down. That’s because on the feet Walker is far, far more dangerous. While the two are close to even on strikes landed per minute (Walker leads 3.87 to 3.56), Ankalaev is a bit of a pillow puncher. He only has one KO in his last five fights, and as we said, he won’t have the size advantage here.

Walker, on the other hand, can absolutely crack his opponents. Sixteen of Walker's 21 career wins have been via knockout. He will also have a seven-inch reach advantage so one would think Ankalaev would be smart to minimize the time they spend striking.

While we think the betting line is a little too lopsided (Walker is being disrepcted with that line), we do see Ankalaev winning. He’s a burning, but well-balanced fighter with little flaws in his game. Our money says this one is going over and Ankalaev escapes with a decision victory.

Under 1.5 rounds in Ankalaev vs. Walker fight

Matheus Nicolau vs. Manel Kape Betting Pick

This is a good co-main event for UFC Fight Night. The flyweight clash sure is more competitive odds-wise than the main event. Here’s how the best sportsbooks have pegged the Nicolau-Kape moneyline odds:

Matheus Nicolau+215+215+215
Manel Kape-265-265-265

Here again, we have a rematch. However, this one did not properly end. Three years ago, Nicolau earned a split decision win over Kape so it was razor close, enough for many to argue that Kape should’ve won. The first fight perfectly showed the contrast in both fighter’s styles though.

Kape is a crisper striker, and he definitely had success in the first fight. His downfall, however, was defending the takedown. Nicolau had no issue taking him down and then controlling him on the ground. Ultimately, that swung the decision in his favor by the slightest of margins.

Three years later, how has each fighter changed? That’s really the money question. Welp, Kape has strung together four wins en route to a No. 6 ranking in the division. Nicolau won three in a row before being knocked out by Brandon Royal last time out, in the first round no less. After that result, it’s fair to wonder if Nicolau is starting to lose his chin now at 31 years old.

That rationale might help explain why Kape is a comfy favorite here despite losing the last time out. We’re certainly buying it too, especially since Kape was so successfully striking against Nicolau in the first meeting. Nicolau is the pick to make here!

Manel Kape to beat Matheus Nicolau

Jim Miller vs. Gabriel Benitez Betting Pick

No one has fought more fights in the UFC than Jim Miller. He was on the UFC 100 card (he was on UFC 200 too and Dana White says he’ll be on UFC 300). Yeah, he’s that old. But in spite of that, Miller is a small favorite over Benitez to win. Here’s the latest betting odds:

Jim Miller-135-135-135
Gabriel Benitez+115+115+115

Benitez is a journeyman fighter too so this isn’t classic UFC matchmaking pitting an aging fan favorite against someone they see star potential in. Benitez is 35 years old, only five years younger than Miller. Both fighters are strikers so it should be a fun duke-out. While we respect Miller’s longevity, it’s really hard to back a 40-year-old. Benitez is dangerous and could finish the UFC legend early here.

Gabriel Benitez to beat Jim Miller

How To Bet On UFC Fight Night?

You can find a complete list of UFC Fight Night bets at one of the underneath bookmakers. Every type of bet — moneyline, over/unders, props — it’s all there for the taking. Not only that, but the below bookies also offer lucrative promotional bonuses. How lucrative? Just look at the table. Deals can reach as much as $2500 in free play at some sites. Click one of the “play now” buttons below to get started!

Meet the author

Eric Uribe

Eric has been passionate about sports since he was 10 years old. He brings over 10 years of sports journalism experience to his expert coverage of sports betting. Hailing from the US, Eric leverages his diverse expertise covering sports at all levels – from high sch...

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