Dec 1, 2017
Dec 1, 2017

UFC 218: Holloway vs. Aldo betting preview

Max Holloway: The dawn of a new era?

Holloway vs. Aldo betting: Analysing the matchup

Holloway vs. Aldo odds: Where is the value?

UFC 218: Holloway vs. Aldo betting preview

On December 2, the UFC returns to Little Caesar’s Arena in Detroit Michigan, where Featherweight Champion Max Holloway embarks on his first title defence against a familiar foe; Joe Aldo. Below, we analyse the factors you’ll want to take into consideration when analysing the Holloway vs. Aldo odds. Read on for some expert Holloway vs. Aldo betting insight.

Live Holloway vs. Aldo odds

The dawn of a new era?

For what seemed like forever, the Featherweight division belonged to Jose Aldo. The Brazilian, long considered the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world, beat every fighter the UFC put in front of him.

It seemed like his greatness was impenetrable, right up until he ran into a Conor McGregor fist 13 seconds into their super fight. McGregor never defended, finding bigger fish to fry and being rightly stripped of his title.

In need of a champion, the UFC pitted two legends - Aldo and Frankie Edgar - against one another, with Aldo emerging victorious. Before he could go on another run, Aldo took a year to re-enter the Octagon, opening the door for contenders.

In his absence, then-up-and-comer Holloway defeated Anthony Pettis for the interim title. When the two title holders squared off, the expectation was that Aldo would resume where he left off.

The expectation was wrong. Holloway was the dominant man, landing twice as many strikes as his more-experienced opponent and knocking Aldo out in the third of five scheduled rounds.

Holloway enjoys the benefits of a 92% takedown defence rate and hasn’t been taken down in his last eight fights.

With the win, experts predicted the dawn of a new age of dominance in the division; a sentiment bettors have echoed within the Holloway vs. Aldo odds. Holloway is the heavy favourite, the first time Aldo has been treated like a ‘dog’ in a decade.

Holloway was scheduled to face Edgar at UFC 218, but with Edgar’s withdrawal, Aldo gets his chance at redemption. Another victory for Holloway will assure sceptics that his victory in the first fight was legitimate and a long reign may begin; a win for Aldo means that the once-great champion can restore his reputation.

Holloway vs Aldo betting: Recent odds

Recent Max Holloway markets at Pinnacle:

Recent Max Holloway markets at Pinnacle

Opening oddsHigh oddsLow oddsClosing oddsResult
Jose Aldo
2.15 2.33 1.99 2.33 Win
Anthony Pettis
1.68 1.68 1.33 1.35 Win
Ricardo Lamas
1.36 1.40 1.33 1.40 Win

Recent Jose Aldo markets at Pinnacle:

Recent Jose Aldo markets at Pinnacle

Opening oddsHigh oddsLow oddsClosing oddsResult
Max Holloway
1.78 1.86 1.64 1.67 Loss
Frankie Edgar
1.77 1.95 1.77 1.91 Win
Conor McGregor
2.45 2.62 1.88 1.91 Loss

With Holloway’s victory in their first fight, it’s inevitable that betting will go differently this time around. The market played remarkably interesting in the lead up to their first fight however.

Where previous markets showed bettor esteem for Holloway, Aldo’s history and reputation kept things in check for the majority of the two months the market was posted. Holloway’s price ascended early, then evened things later when his price got too good to ignore. It was in the days leading up to the fight where things really got fun though.

On May 29 (five days before fight night), Holloway’s price took a huge dip, from 2.26 to better than even, suggesting a big bet (or many of them) came in on Max. Eventually, Aldo supporters exploited the value on their man, and the price continued to climb (despite some back and forth) in the closing hours. Ultimately, bettors did well to wait, getting the best possible prices on both fighters in those last 96 hours.

Holloway vs. Aldo betting: Tale of the tape

Holloway vs. Aldo betting: Tale of the tape

Max HollowayNameJose Aldo
5'11'' Height 5'7''
69'' Reach 70"
145 lbs Weight 145 lbs
18-3 Record 26-3
8 Wins by KO 14
2 Wins by sub 2
0 Losses by KO 2
1 Losses by sub 1

Analysing the matchup

While both fighters have well-rounded games, there’s little doubt that striking is both fighters’ bread and butter. Of the two, it will be Holloway who will want to keep things standing.

Max mixes it up as any fighter in the game, attempting 5.79 strikes per minute whilst absorbing 3.75. Aldo prefers to be more calculating, landing 3.32 SApM and absorbing 2.39. Both fighters land with frequency in the low-mid 40s and successfully defend in the high 60s.

Where Aldo had a problem in the first fight was with Holloway’s range; essentially, Aldo is accustomed to using his superior reach to control opponents, who are customarily smaller than he is.

Holloway was the dominant man in their first fight, landing twice as many strikes as Aldo

Aldo is the superior fighter on the ground, but getting there may prove difficult. Holloway enjoys the benefits of a 92% takedown defence rate and hasn’t been taken down in his last eight fights. Even if Aldo gets him down, Aldo may not have the wrestling to keep Holloway on the floor.

It’s worth noting here that Aldo looked good in the first round of their first fight before Holloway completely took over in the 2nd and 3rd before the knockout. If you think this is Aldo’s fight to win, Under 2.5 rounds at 2.400* in the Holloway vs. Aldo odds feels like a smart bet.

Holloway vs Aldo odds: Where is the value?

The momentum certainly seems to be with Holloway. The victory in the first fight, his eleven straight victories and having done all this at 25 suggests we’re on the precipice of a special era for the division and there was nothing flukish about the first victory.

Of course, that’s all proof that the question you should be asking isn’t “should he be the favourite?” so much as “Is the value there?” After all, Holloway, as of this writing, is a 1.425* favourite.

If you think Aldo will come in with better stamina, a better game plan or just his form of old, you may be right to see value in his underdog status. If you think we’re truly on the verge of the Holloway era, a bet on the favourite makes sense. Either way, this is one of the biggest fights of 2017 and value can be found in the Holloway vs. Aldo odds.

Odds subject to change

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