Where: T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Nevada
When: Saturday, January 18th
Time: 11:00 PM
Moneyline: McGregor -200, Cerrone +170
Will the Fight Go The Distance: Yes (+333), No (-550)
After a one-year hiatus, Conor McGregor makes his long-awaited return to the octagon.
The Notorious ranks third in the UFC lightweight rankings, and has posted a MMA record of 21-4 with 18 KOs and one submission.
Last time out, the loud mouth Irishman didn’t necessarily put his money where his mouth is.
McGregor faced off with Khabib Nurmagomedov for the lightweight championship and was dominated in nearly every facet of the fight before ultimately being submitted in the fourth round via neck crank.
Khabib hit McGregor with 19 more significant strikes, 58 total strikes to the head, and took him down three times before McGregor finally submitted.
True chaos then ensued after the fight when a massive brawl broke out which snowballed into a string of bust-ups which McGregor was a part of both in and out of the octagon over the year. McGregor was arrested back in March for strong-armed robbery and criminal mischief. He was then charged in August with assault at a Dublin pub.
Meanwhile, Donald ‘the Cowboy’ Cerrone is coming off consecutive knockout losses after being knocked out by Justin Gaethje in the first round.
In June, Cerrone lost via TKO to Tony Ferguson, but this time by medical stoppage due to a closed right eye after the second round.
Although he’s had some recent struggles, the Cowboy has the most wins in UFC history with 36 career victories, and a 36-13-1 overall MMA record.
McGregor wins via TKO in Round 2 - (+450)
My expectation is McGregor will look to shake off the rust quickly and come out swinging in his first fight back. Cerrone has been knocked out within the first two rounds of his last two fights, and all signs are pointing at a similar result in Las Vegas.
To make matters worse for the Cowboy, six of McGregor’s last seven wins have come via TKO within the first two rounds.
Conor McGregor by KO, TKO, or Disqualification (-137)
Although McGregor has been out of the game for a year, he’s still yet to be knocked out in his career which means Cerrone’s only chance is to submit to him.
With only four losses in his career and all of them to submission, McGregor has an ideal opponent in Cerrone.
Despite the Cowboy totaling his most wins (17) via submission, he has only recorded a victory with it three times over the last five years. Instead, Cerrone has been prone to being knocked out over his last two fights which plays into the hands of McGregor.
The Irishman’s most success has come with his knockouts, totaling 18 KOs over his career.
With that said, if you’re looking for a long shot play, Cerrone to win by submission has great value at (+600).