On the 25th of September, The crowd will be buzzing when the T-Mobile Arena, Paradise, Nevada, welcomes the UFC back for another mouth-watering PPV event at UFC 266. The main card for the night features three 5-round matchups, including two title fights, as Alexander Volkanovski puts his Featherweight title on the line against former title challenger Brian Ortega. Valentina Shevchenko will be defending her women’s Featherweight belt against former Invicta FC Bantamweight champion Lauren Murphy.
A third headline brawl between Nick Diaz, returning to the octagon after a long time away, and former UFC Welterweight champion Robbie Lawler makes up the last of the three-round fights on the night. The entire lineup for UFC 266 is stacked, and it promises to relieve a memorable experience for the fans in attendance. Stay with us for the best odds, bets, picks and predictions.
UFC 266 (Volkanovski vs. Ortega) General Information:
- Date: Saturday, September 25, 2021
- TV-Time: ESPN+, 10:00 p.m. ET
- Venue: T-Mobile Arena
- Location: Las Vegas, Nevada
- Fights: 5 Fights on the Main Card. 4 fights on the Preliminary Card. 5 fights on the Early Preliminary Card.
- Main Event: Alexander Volkanovski vs. Brian Ortega
Expert Pick #1 – Volkanovski to win @-155
Alexander Volkanovski is a complete martial artist, well rounded in all aspects of combat. “The Great” is undefeated in his last 19 outings to the octagon. He has twice defended his featherweight championship against the dominant former Champion and striking sensation, Max Holloway. Standing in the way of a third straight title defence for the Australian is a supremely talented opponent in Brian “T City” Ortega, who was also his rival coach in TUF earlier this year. Ortega’s only loss was when he challenged Max Holloway for the featherweight title in 2018, losing way of Doctor Stoppage.
Brian Ortega’s jiu-jitsu black belt will be put to the test against Volkanovski’s expert wrestling. The fight is expected to go to the ground as both fighters are pretty evenly matched on the feet, although Volkanovski has a slight edge in that department. If he exerts the relentless pressure,he is known for and matches what Ortega has to offer on the ground, our experts believe Alexander Volkanovski will come out victorious on the night. He is the UFC Featherweight defending Champion for a reason.
Records: Alexander Volkanovski [22-1-0] | Brian Ortega [15-1-0] Main Card – Featherweight (145lbs) – Approx. Start Time: 2:00 a.m. ET
Expert Pick #2 – Shevchenko to win @-140
Another title defence for Valentina Shevchenko is on the cards as she faces a really tough opponent in Lauren Murphy. Valentina, for obvious reasons, is the overwhelming favourite coming into this fight. The number 2 pound for pound female fighter in the UFC, one of the best strikers in the UFC (male and female), a five-time defending women’s flyweight champion, the list of her achievements and capabilities goes on.
Lauren Murphy is no pushover by any means, however. The former Invicta FC strawweight champion is the number 4 ranked women’s featherweight globally and comes into this fight on the back of a 5-fight win streak. But against the overwhelming ability of the “Bullet” Shevchenko, she does not stand much of a chance.
Records: Valentina Shevchenko [21-3-0] | Lauren Murphy [15-4-0] Main Card – Women’s flyweight (125lbs) – Approx. Start Time: 1:30 a.m. ET
Expert Pick #3 – Hooker to win @-153
Dan Hooker and Nasrat Haqrapast will be facing off in the octagon at UFC 266, each having something to prove. Dan Hooker aims to bounce back to winning ways after suffering two straight defeats for the first time in his professional career since 2010, and Nasrat, perhaps spurred by the events going on in his home country of Afghanistan, will look to inflict a third consecutive defeat on the New Zealand-born fighter.
Dan, “The Hangman” Hooker, is known for his aggressive and heavy pressure style that sometimes stifles opponents and other times gets him caught and finished. But at his relentless best, he should prove too much to handle for Nasrat, who is also the less experienced fighter in this match up. Our experts predict a Dan Hooker win.
Records: Dan Hooker [20-10-0] |Nasrat Haqparast [13-3-0] Preliminary Card – Lightweight (155lbs) – Approx. Start Time: 1:00 a.m. ET
Complete Card & Predictions for the Night
UFC 266 will have the noise of the fans in the arena to fuel an already compelling and action-packed card. Super exciting fights are on the agenda for the night, and this event is sure to serve up a spectacle. Here are the Predictions, Odds, Bets and Tips for this weekend:
- Featherweight (145lbs): Alexander Volkanovski vs. Brian Ortega – Volkanovski via Decision
- Women’s Flyweight (125lbs): Valentina Shevchenko vs. Lauren Murphy – Shevchenko via KO/TKO
- Welterweight (170lbs): Nick Diaz vs. Robbie Lawler – Lawler via Decision
- Heavyweight (265lbs): Curtis Blaydes vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik – Blaydes via KO/TKO
- Lightweight (155lbs): Jessica Andrade vs. Cynthia Calvillo – Andrade via KO/TKO
- Bantamweight (135lbs): Marlon Moraes vs. Merab Dvalishvili – Dvalishvili via Decision
- Lightweight (155lbs): Dan Hooker vs. Nasrat Haqparast – Hooker via KO/TKO
- Heavyweight (265lbs): Shamil Abdurakhimov vs. Chris Daukaus – Daukaus via KO/TKO
- Women’s Flyweight (125lbs): Manon Fiorot vs. Mayra Bueno Silva – Fiorot via KO/TKO
- Middleweight (185lbs): Karl Roberson vs. Nick Maximov – Roberson via KO/TKO
- Welterweight (170lbs): Matthew Semelsberger vs. Martin Sano – Semelsberger via KO/TKO
- Lightweight (155lbs): Jalin Turner vs. Uros Medic – Medic via Decision
- Featherweight (145lbs): Jonathan Pearce vs. Omar Morales – Morales via Decision