Prediction and Best Bets for Islam Makhachev vs. Thiago Moises (UFC Vegas 31)

| July 15, 2021 5:49 am PDT

The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns this Saturday, July 17, with Islam Makhachev vs. Thiago Moises.

Fans are looking forward to seeing the 155-pound division’s best prospect in action. As I will be covering in my Makhachev vs. Moises prediction and betting picks, this is not a fight that the former can afford to lose. 

The betting odds for Makhachev vs. Moises suggest this one will be one-sided. I’ll be sharing those with you, as well as the best UFC bets for this weekend’s main event.

Once we’ve covered the betting side of things, I’ll be expanding on the reasons for my prediction and picks for Makhachev vs. Moises at UFC Vegas 31. But before all of that, I guess it’s a good place to start with who wins and how.

Makhachev or Moises – Who Wins?

  • Islam Makhachev by Decision 

Is Makhachev the next Khabib Nurmagomedov?

I think it’s a little too early to say. However, he can take a sizeable leap in following his friend and mentor’s footsteps with a win over the tricky Brazilian in this Saturday’s UFC main event. 

I’m predicting a win for Makhachev by decision and have my reasons for doing so. But before I get into those, let’s check out the odds and best bets for the fight.

UFC Vegas 31 Odds for Makhachev vs. Moises

Islam Makhachev to Win-650
Thiago Moises to Win+425

You can find the odds for UFC Vegas 31 over at BetUS.

Unsurprisingly, Makhachev’s odds to win make him the favorite. But there is no value at all if you are backing the Russian on the moneyline.

The sambo master, who comes in with a record of 19-1, is expected to win this fight. Still, I don’t think he’s going to find life in there with Moises as easy as the bookies seem to think he will.

I have a couple of better wagers that I’ll be looking at in the next section if you are betting on Makhachev vs. Moises. So, stick me for those.

But before we move on, you can’t tell me that the odds for Moises aren’t appealing.

At 26, he has a record of 15-4 in MMA and has only lost to the impressive pair of Beneil Dariush and Damir Ismagulov. Those guys have a combined streak of 22 wins. 

Best Bets for Makhachev vs. Moises

Fight to go the Distance-140
Makhachev to Win by Decision-110
Makhachev to Win in Round 5+2800

First, this fight looks likely to go the full five rounds. 

You can get a decent price on that scenario with the latest UFC props for Makhachev vs. Moises.

A slightly better price of -110 is available, should you like the sound of my predictions and betting pick for the fight. I see the Russian outfoxing his Brazilian dancing partner and pretty much smothering him for the full five rounds.

But the best bet for Makhachev vs. Moises when it comes to big, fat odds is to back the Russian to win in the fifth round. This price is phenomenal, and I’d recommend throwing a couple of spare dollars down on it, as it’s the chances of it happening are far greater than the odds suggest. 

Let’s get into how I see this one going and why.

Why Makhachev Beats Moises

Makhachev by decision seems the most likely outcome in this fight. 

The Russian gets his first main event bout, which means the first time he will compete in a five-round bout. This will Moises’ first in the UFC and the fourth of his professional career. Advantage Moises? Well, not really.

Although the Brazilian has solid cardio, he’s not a wrestler. Makhachev holds the advantages in this department and will have the ability to take his man down when and where he sees fit. But here’s where things get interesting — Moises is a legitimate BJJ blackbelt with submissions in two of his last four fights.

Now, Makhachev has never been submitted as a pro. His only loss thus far came by way of knockout to another Brazilian, Adriano Martins, in 2015. Eight of his career wins have come by way of submission. 

The Dagestani’s gameplan is more than likely going to be built around tiring his man out with takedowns and keeping him on the backfoot with his steady jab. Although he has decent power, his three KO wins tell us he is not a knockout artist. 

I’m not afraid to admit that this could be a very boring fight. But that could favor anyone betting on UFC Vegas 31’s main event this weekend.

This weekend’s UFC main event pick is Makhachev by decision. But there is a chance that he could get a stoppage in the later rounds if he turns up the pressure. With that in mind, I’d remind you to consider the Russian to win in round 5 (+2800), as those odds are too good to ignore.

Where to Bet on UFC Vegas 31’s Main Event

That concludes my betting preview for Islam Makhachev vs. Thiago Moises. 

I’m not expecting this one to be fireworks, but there is a sense of predictability to this one that could favor bettors. Of course, anything can happen in this game, and to completely overlook Moises is a bad idea. 

If you’re looking to bet on Makhachev vs. Moises or any of the fights this weekend, head on over to the top UFC betting sites online and have a scout of the odds on offer.

You can find more UFC predictions, picks, and betting previews, below.

Adam Haynes
Adam Haynes

Adam is a sports writer and tipster with a strong background in MMA, boxing, and combat sports.

When Adam isn't writing about those, as well as politics, rugby, and Gaelic Games, he can be found working on methods and strategies to beat the bookies.

For his troubles, Adam is a fan of Leinster Rugby, Glasgow Celtic, and trusting the process.

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