UFC 247, Jon Jones vs. Dominick Reyes, won’t attract the media hype and massive PPV audience that 246 did, when Conor McGregor returned to the Octagon and knocked out Donald Cerrone in 40 seconds. But the Light Heavyweight Championship bout will nonetheless draw much interest.
The case can be made that Jones, the current and two-time undisputed UFC Light Heavyweight Champion, is one of the greatest fighters in the history of mixed martial arts. His lone defeat came in 2009, when he was disqualified against Matt Hamill for using “intentional elbows.”
Jones laughed this week at ESPN’s Max Kellerman when he opined Khabib Nurmagomedov is the best pound-for-pound MMA fighter he’s ever seen. “If you were to ask some MMA experts about myself and Khabib, I think most people would be able to tell our resumes are completely different,” Jones answered.
Khabib, a lot of his victories are against a lot of people that are relatively unknown. I’ve been fighting legends since I was a young man in my early 20s,” Jones declared.
Reyes, a former IT tech support worker at a California high school, became a formidable opponent for Jones after knocking out former middleweight champ Chris Weidman in the first round last October. Reyes’ record is unblemished at 12-0.
“I’ve been studying Jon from the beginning,” Reyes said. “I fully respect him, but what he’s done in the past means nothing. It’s irrelevant.” Regardless, sports bettors and oddsmakers believe Jones will prevail, and the fight will conclude with Reyes knocked out.
Jones enters Saturday night’s fight at Houston’s Toyota Center as the favorite at -440. That’s implied odds of 81.48 percent, a $100 bet netting just $22.73. At +340, the same wager would net $340 on Reyes should be pull off the upset.
Tale of the Tape
32 Age 30
6’4″ Height 6’4″
84.5″ Reach 77″
Orthodox Stance Southpaw
Jones is 25-1 with 10 knockouts (KO/TKO), nine by decision, and six by submission. Reyes is 12-0 with seven by knockout, three by decision, and two by submission.
Jones by KO/TKO is the method of victory with the shortest odds at +230. Jones by points (+240) and by submission (+250) are next. Reyes by KO/TKO is at +500, by points (+1300), and submission (+2200).
As for when the fight will end, Round 1 is likeliest at +370. The remaining rounds are Round 2 (+430), Round 3 (+500), Round 4 (+650), and Round 5 (+950).
The co-main event for UFC 247 pits Valentina Shevchenko (18-3) vs. Katlyn Chookagian (13-2). Though there are three other fights on the Main Card, it’s the only contest of note Saturday night aside from Jones-Reyes.
An upset would also deliver betters who take Chookagian hefty wins.
Shevchenko is heavily favored at -1050. A $100 bet nets a measly $9.52. Chookagian is the long underdog at +660, a $100 bet winning $660.
Two of Shevchenko’s losses came against Amanda Nunes, largely considered the best female UFC fighter in the sport’s history. Shevchenko’s been dominant in her last four victories, which is why, though Chookagian is a strong opponent, Shevchenko is so heavily expected to win.