Another massive UFC event is coming on Saturday, April 8th at Miami-Dade Arena in Miami as middleweight champion Alex Pereira attempts to defend his belt against former champ Israel Adesanya in a rematch of their bout at UFC 281, which Pereira won via 5th round TKO. Despite seemingly having Adesanya’s number, Pereira comes into the fight as the surprising slight moneyline underdog on most UFC betting sites and sports betting apps.
Alex Pereira-Israel Adesanya UFC Middleweight Championship Odds
- Alex Pereira is the only man to beat Israel Adesanya at middleweight
- No. 5 welterweight Gilbert Burns fights No. 11 Jorge Masvidal in co-main event
- Pereira has had only 8 previous professional MMA bouts
Alex Pereira vs. Israel Adesanya Odds
Considering the last meeting between these two elite middleweight mixed martial artists went into the fifth and final round, it’s not surprising that the betting odds are very tight here, though the fact that Adesanya is a slight favorite is a bit curious. All odds courtesy of Sports Interaction.
Win by TKO/KO/DQ
Win by Submission
Win by Decision
Alex Pereira Odds
Pereira wasn’t exactly dominant in the first mixed martial arts matchup between these two, but he battled through four rounds of adversity and pounced when Adesanya gave him the opportunity in the final round. It’s also worth mentioning that Pereira beat Adesanya twice in pro kick boxing bouts, one by straight KO and one by decision, so it’s not like his win at UFC 281 was a fluke.
The Brazilian fighter is all about the offense. He’s a hulking middleweight and he uses every ounce of that 185-pound frame when he launches those death blows. He definitely has the power advantage here, and his superior kick-boxing should serve him well again, though he will definitely want to limit the counter striking success that Adesanya had in the first round of their first UFC bout.
The underdog should also take heart and confidence from the fact that he has won all three matchups against Adesanya, and the fact that he’s still an underdog despite his 3-0 record against the Last Stylebender should light a fire under his rear end as well. After suffering with takedowns at UFC 281, Pereira has surely worked on his takedown defense in the interim, and if it’s good enough to keep the fight on the feet for the majority of the 25 minutes, Pereira should have no problem getting the better of the challenger.
Israel Adesanya Odds
Israel Adesanya came into the first matchup as a -200 odds favorite, and this time his odds are at -145. As you can see from the method of victory odds, if the fight ends in a finish, it is likely that it will be the Nigerian fighter on the canvas rather than the Brazilian.
If he wants to win the rematch, Adesanya will need to do what he did for a lot of the first fight: play a cat and mouse game with the massive Pereira, shooting in and out to snag points while keeping his distance from Pereira’s cinder-block hands. Pereira is a classic kickboxer and he fights like one, so Adesanya needs to get creative and mix up his attack a lot by throwing in some of his trademark spinning attacks and question mark kicks.
Adesanya has the length and quickness to find some joy on the feet if he keeps Pereira guessing, but the most important part will be his wrestling. The Last Stylebender had a ton of success in the middle rounds of the fight at UFC 281 when he was able to get Pereira to the ground, as the Brazilian was unable to get himself up and tired himself significantly in the attempt.
If Adesanya is going to win his UFC belt back from Poatan, he’s going to need to take some risks on the feet and ensure he gets some solid control time in the clinch or on the mat. If this turns into a kickboxing match, Adesanya will surely have another disappointing night.
Gilbert Burns vs. Jorge Masvidal Odds
Win by KO/TKO/DQ
Win by Submission
Win by Decision
The co-main event is a pretty fun welterweight bout between No. 5 contender Gilbert Burns and No. 11 Jorge Masvidal. Since getting TKO’d by Kamaru Usman, Burns has bounced back really nicely, beating two solid fighters in Stephen Thompson and Neil Magny and going the distance in an epic showdown with Khamzat Chimaev that the Brazilian lost.
Masvidal, on the other hand, has not won a fight since 2019, and is definitely starting to show his age. Burns is still a serious contender who could get a title shot with a convincing win over Masvidal, while a loss for Masvidal, who will be fighting in front of his hometown crowd in Miami, could very well mean the end of Masvidal’s MMA career. This fight should have fireworks, but the result doesn’t seem to be in question.
Alex is a recent graduate of Ryerson's Sport Media program in 2019 and has been contributing to BettingTop10 since 2020. He has worked in the field of sports and sports betting for several years, including stops writing for theScore and daily fantasy sports website FantasyPros as one of the lead NBA news writers. A dedicated sports fan and experienced sports bettor, Alex has the knowledge to provide you with the best betting advice and the sneakiest props no matter what the sport may be.
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