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May 22, 2017
May 22, 2017

UFC Fight Night: Gustafsson vs. Teixeira betting preview

An in-depth look at the Gustafsson vs. Teixeira odds

Does the underdog have what it takes to cause an upset?

Where will the fight be won?

UFC Fight Night: Gustafsson vs. Teixeira betting preview

On May 28, 2017, the UFC returns to Sweden, where number one light heavyweight contender Alexander Gustafsson takes on the number two light heavyweight contender Glover Teixeira, presumably with a title shot on the line. Read on to learn the five factors bettors should consider when deciding which fighter to bet on.

A new opportunity

When Daniel Cormier defeated Anthony Johnson at UFC 210, the speculation over who his next opponent would begin immediately. Johnson’s announcement that he was retiring probably didn’t affect the next title match since it was Johnson’s second loss to Cormier, but it certainly affected the light heavyweight rankings.

Where Johnson was previously the number one contender, his name is now gone from those lists. Ascending into his slot is Alexander Gustafsson (1.384*) the Swedish one-time wunderkind's record has recently suffered from matches with Johnson, Cormier and Jon Jones. Moving up to number two was Glover Teixeira (3.260*), whose record has suffered a similar fate with losses to Jones, Johnson and Bellator light heavyweight champion Phil Davis (Gustafsson’s other career loss).

Gustafsson has the height and reach advantage, not to mention the home crowd advantage in Stockholm and history has regarded him as the superior fighter.

Cormier is set to face Jones at UFC 214 in July, but Jones' recently spotty record could mean a busy summer for the winner of this one. Should Jones be removed from the equation (again), Cormier would need an opponent and the winner of this match is the natural choice. Even if UFC 214 goes off without a hitch, there’s only so much Cormier vs Jones (they fought once before) promotion the fight world can take.

Gustafsson vs. Teixeira is a battle for the presumed title shot and second-tier supremacy. Two fighters with phenomenal records against everyone except the elite will decide which of them might still be worth that tag themselves. For the winner? Probably another title shot. For the loser? Probably the end of hope for the same.

Analysing the betting odds

Alex Gustafsson’s recent betting odds at Pinnacle:

Alex Gustafsson’s recent betting odds at Pinnacle:

Name (Date)

Open

Highest

Lowest

Close

Result

Jan Blachowicz (9/3/2016)

1.19

1.19

1.15

1.18

Win

Daniel Cormier (10/3/2015)

3.65

3.85

3.09

3.51

Loss

Anthony Johnson (1/24/2015)

1.45

1.45

1.31

1.40

Loss

Glover Teixeira’s recent betting odds at Pinnacle:

Glover Teixeira’s recent betting odds at Pinnacle:

Name (Date)

Open

Highest

Lowest

Close

Result

Jared Cannonier (2/11/2017)

1.71

1.71

1.43

1.50

Win

Anthony Johnson (8/20/2016)

2.80

3.05

2.39

2.93

Loss

Rashad Evans (4/16/2016)

1.59

1.59

1.46

1.53

Win

The difference in esteem with which bettors behold the two fighters is evident here. First, in the respective Johnson fights Gustafsson was regarded as a solid favourite, Teixeira a solid underdog and second in the betting in both fighter's most recent bouts. Neither Blachowicz nor Cannonier is a top 10 light heavyweight and while Gustafsson was a monster favourite over the former, Teixeira was barely rated a favourite at all against the latter.

It’s interesting to note that in each fighter’s second-to-last bouts, there was massive action on them late before a pre-fight bounce back. Gustafsson’s low vs Cormier and Teixeira’s against Johnson occurred on the day of their respective fights. That may suggest the possibility of an arbitrage opportunity later in this market if there’s an extreme move.

Tale of the tape

Tale of the tape

Gustafsson

Name

Teixeira

6’5”

Height

6’2”

79”

Reach

76”

205 lbs

Weight

205 lbs

17-4

Record

26-5

10

Wins by KO

15

3

Wins by Sub

7

1

Losses by KO

2

1

Losses by Sub

0

The match-up

More than any fighter in the light heavyweight division, Alex Gustafsson wants to keep fights standing and is built to accomplish that. At 6’5” and with a 79” reach, the Swede uses his length to control the fight, peppering opponents with strikes from afar. Gustafsson’s SLpM is a solid 4.12, his SApM 3.60 and he lands at a 40% frequency. His career takedown defence rate of 86% is off-the-charts good, especially considering the elite wrestlers he’s faced in recent years.

If you think recent losses and turning 30 means Gustafsson has passed his peak there may be value in betting the underdog.

Teixeira’s striking numbers are similar to Gustafsson’s; 4.03 SLpM, 3.33 SApM and 44% striking accuracy. Where he differs is a stronger reliance on his submission game. He goes for takedowns more often and lands them more often (54% takedown accuracy to Gustafsson’s 40%). Teixeira would love nothing more than to get the fight to the ground, but there’s a real question about whether he can make that happen. That’s why the markets are favouring Gustafsson.

Who will win?

The odds say Gustafsson (1.384*). He has the height and reach advantage, not to mention the home crowd advantage in Stockholm and history has regarded him as the superior fighter. Gustafsson’s control of a fight on its feet is a tough nut to crack; only elite wrestlers have managed to do it and Teixeira (3.260*) isn’t that.

If that paragraph makes sense to you Gustafsson is your man, but there are reasons to disagree with it. Teixeira’s record shows he’s no slouch, while Gustafsson’s biggest win over his last five fights was over Jimi Manuwa, so nothing can be assumed about the maintenance of his skills. If you think Gustafsson is the same guy who barely lost in title fights against Jones and Cormier, he’s your man.

If, however, you think those recent losses and turning 30 means Gustafsson’s passed his peak, there may be value in betting the underdog. Either way, there’s a lot on the line in this headliner for a free fight card. The world will watch and if you pick right, you’ll profit.

Use this expert insight and bet with the best UFC odds online at Pinnacle.

Odds subject to change

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