UFC 205 Odds: 6 Upsets That Could Go Down on Saturday

by Kevin Roberts
on November 10, 2016

The hype turns to reality this Saturday, when the highly anticipated UFC 205 finally drops down at Madison Square Garden. Die hard MMA fans get a true treat in what could arguably be labeled the best UFC event in history.

This is a truly loaded fight card, as the main event draws just about everyone in – Conor McGregor versus Eddie Alvarez – but from the prelims to the final major fight, this one has literally everything you could ask for.

Seriously, the only thing this one is missing is Brock Lesnar and/or Ronda Rousey.

Most everyone will be tuning in for a variety of reasons; to see some cocky fighters get smacked in the mouth, to see some knockout and to see some titles change hands.

All of that might be where the UFC 205 upset picks come in, as we all know all too well that every single major UFC event carries serious shocker potential.

We’ve seen some unbeatable legends tap out or get knocked out, with the likes of McGregor, Rousey and Luke Rockhold all experience the bitter taste of defeat over the past year.

Which top fighters could experience that again on November 12th? For MMA betting purposes, we explore the top six UFC upset picks to consider betting on:

Raquel Pennington +140 Over Miesha Tate -170

Let’s start out small with the scrappy Pennington (8-6), who looks to hand Cupcake Tate her second loss in a row. At first glance, no one would bet against Miesha Tate, who is about as battle tested as they come and has one of the more versatile MMA skill-sets around. Tate also just lost her women’s Bantamweight title belt to Amanda Nunes and probably has her sights set on another shot to get it back.

That being said, Tate might be vulnerable for a bad loss here, especially since she’s going up against a gritty fighter that can either take you out on the ground or outlast you and earn the Decision. Tate is the better fighter on paper, but Pennington comes in hot with three straight wins. A big upset win here, and that’d put her on the fast track to a title shot of her own.

Ultimately there isn’t a big payout here. If the odds were a little more playable, we’d consider betting hard on Pennington. Instead, we like Tate to get a quick win and look ahead to another title shot.

Eddie Alvarez +145 Over Conor McGregor -175

The main event ranks second as far as UFC 205 upset picks go, and that’s because of the weak odds both ways. Alvarez is absolutely a worthy opponent, as he has a strong striking game that potentially could match McGregor and his deadly ground game is easily superior to The Notorious.

The big thing working against Alvarez here is McGregor is going for history and he simply is not a guy that is easily knocked out. He actually literally has never been knocked out during his pro MMA career and all three of his losses have come via submission. Needless to say, if Alvarez is going to pull off the stunner, it’s probably going to come on the ground.

Because that is McGregor’s weakness, an upset is definitely in play here. Unfortunately, the odds don’t really support a big upset bet, as the payout just isn’t there unless you lay down a massive bet.

Ultimately, McGregor can have his hands on two titles with a win this weekend, and would then have the UFC world by the throat. We expect a knockout win for The Notorious. You’re better off looking for an upset pick at a different fight when it comes to McGregor.

Tyron Woodley +165 Over Stephen Thompson -205

The odds are slightly more playable for Tyron Woodley, who is the current Welterweight champ in the UFC, yet comes into UFC 205 as the clear underdog against riser, Stephen Thompson.

Thompson is a fun favorite, as he’s 13-1 and has made a living with the knockout. It’s weird to see him being favored so much, of course, seeing as Woodley is every bit the striker his opponent is and comes in blazing hot with three straight victories.

In a weird spot, this could be a good time to be to bet on the champ to hold onto his belt.

Michael Johnson +230 Over Khabib Nurmagomedov -300

It’s pretty unlikely we finally see Nurmagomedov eat his first loss of his impressive career this weekend, but the odds demand you at least consider the possibility. Michael Johnson is a worthy contender, too, seeing as he hasn’t lost by anything other than a Decision since 2013.

Johnson is a strong striker who has the game to stand up and fight Nurmagomedov, and if he can avoid a quick exit via KO or submission, he just might be able to steal this thing.

The real play here is that Nurmagomedov gets lazy or impatient, neither of which are necessarily likely, but every undefeated run does have to end eventually. It’s unlikely that happens at UFC 205, but the odds demand at least a flier bet that it does.

Jeremy Stephens +260 Over Frankie Edgar -340

The odds pick up even more for Stephens to upset Frankie Edgar and we’ll be honest; it’s just not going to happen. There might not be another fighter out there with more heat than Edgar, who is probably one of the best pound-for-pound talents the UFC has ever seen and he simply has zero quit in him.

Edgar certainly has his bad moments where he can’t land the knockout punch or win a Decision, but the guy is tough as nails and has never lost by KO or submission in 25 pro MMA fights.

That alone is ridiculous, but even when he’s not buckling down for a full fight, he has the ability to knock you out or get you to tap on the ground.

The only play here is that a veteran fighter like Stephens can stick with Edgar for the entire fight and somehow convince the judges to lean his way on the Decision. Stephens is just 25-12 in his career, but he’s no slouch. Most of his losses (8) have come via Decision and the guy has shown fierce KO power (16 knockouts!). It is very unlikely he delivers Edgar’s first ever KO loss, though, so the play is that he can somehow get the best of Edgar overall and escape with his 7th Decision victory of his career.

This probably is not the upset pick to roll with in the end, of course, seeing as Thompson is just 2-3 in his last five fights and Edgar is such a handful. More specifically, Edgar’s last lost was a Decision to a better fighter in Jose Aldo, which was preceded by five straight wins.

The odds make this a bettable underdog pick, but it’s probably wasted money. We firmly expect a Frankie Edgar win, likely by Decision.

Karolina Kowalkiewicz +300 Over Joanna Jędrzejczyk -400

Hands down, the top fight to bet on at UFC 205 is going to be this battle of unbeatens. Karolina Kowalkiewicz and Joanna Jedrzejczyk put their unblemished UFC records on the line in a massive Strawweight title fight, where one of these fighters will be dropped down a peg or two and the other will walk away as the champ.

Right now that title belongs to the overwhelming favorite in Jedrzejczyk, who has the superior 12-0 record and has displayed solid power with four career KO wins.

This is a tough fight to call, as both fighters have some power and are very scrappy, having recorded a whopping 14 Decision wins between them. It is very likely we’re going to see a 15th here, but the play would be the rising Kowalkiewicz somehow shocks Jedrzejczyk with a sneaky submission or knockout.

That’s not really going to be the call by most experts, but UFC title fights are made for moments like this. The reality is, these are two very good fighters that haven’t lost yet. A shocking win by Kowalkiewicz isn’t necessarily logical and surely isn’t a lock, but with these fun odds, it’s the play when it comes to UFC betting.

Remember, none of these UFC 205 upset picks are locks. For us, we need really good odds to take a shot at a big upset. For the most part, that really has us just taking a stab at Kowalkiewicz notching the upset this weekend. That could happen, though, and if so, a modest $100 bet at a betting site like Bovada could return a cool $300.

Regardless of how you bet on UFC 205 this weekend, we wish you luck. Enjoy the fights!

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