Predictions and Picks for Thiago Santos vs. Johnny Walker (UFC Vegas 38)

| October 1, 2021 11:10 am PDT

What a fight we have to look forward to in the main event of Saturday’s UFC Vegas 38.

If you’re looking for betting advice, odds, and predictions for Thiago Santos vs. Johnny Walker, I’ve laid it all out for you below.

The odds for Santos vs. Walker have the former title challenger as a moderate favorite. I don’t agree with the bookies on this one, but I still respect the 37-year-old as a threat.

However, as you will find out in my predictions for Santos-Walker, the latter just might have the game plan to make the fight look a lot more straightforward than the betting line suggests.

Let’s start with the odds for UFC Vegas 38’s headliner and work out way down.

Moneyline Odds for Santos vs. Walker

Odds for Santos to Win-165
Odds for Walker to Win+135

I’ve taken the odds above from the MyBookie betting site.

As you can see, Santos’ odds to beat Walker make him the -165 favorite. The former title challenger is looking to push his way back into the frontrunners at 205-pounds, and the bookies believe he is the safer bet. 

At +135, Johnny Walker’s odds for the UFC this Saturday are more appealing.

Walker was written off as a hype job following a blistering run halted by a pair of losses in late 2019 and early 2020. However, the rangy Brazilian responded in style in September 2020 with a first-round stoppage of Ryan Spann.

I believe the value is with the moderate dog in this one. Let’s move on to my predictions for Santos vs. Walker, and I’ll explain why.

Santos vs. Walker Predictions

  • Predicted Winner: Johnny Walker 
  • Predicted Method of Victory: KO/TKO
  • Predicted Round: 1

Torn on who wins the Santos vs. Walker fight? If so, I’d consider a few things here.

First, I’d recommend betting on Walker to beat Santos. He’s younger, hungrier, and just seems the more explosive fighter in this contest. 

Santos, a slow starter, could find himself in major trouble on Saturday night. Did you know that five of his nine losses as a pro came in the first round?

Well, guess what? Every one of Walker’s wins in the UFC has ended in Round 1. 

I’ll expand further on my reasons for picking Walker to beat Santos after providing you with my recommended bets for the fight.

Top Betting Picks for Santos vs. Walker

Walker to Win+135
Walker to Win by KO/TKO+210
Walker to Win in Round 1+450

The first of my top picks for Santos vs. Walker is for Walker to win.

In all fairness, he’s the value bet and has the type of style that Santos doesn’t like dealing with. We’re talking fast, abrasive, in your face, striking punctuated by an awkward and unpredictable style.

I can’t see this one going to the scorecards, so back Walker to win by KO/TKO (+210) if you’re looking for a little more bite.

With that said, all signs point toward an early stoppage for the younger man. You can get a very generous +450 with some of the top MMA betting apps right now for Walker inside the first. 

That has to be worth a shot?

Analysis of Why Walker Beats Santos

It’s easy to pick a fighter in any bout. Explaining why you are picking that fighter is a tougher deal.

That’s something to keep in mind when you are looking to place bets on Walker to beat Santos. It’s always good to have as many tricks and MMA betting tips in your favor when approaching the fights.

Of course, you might be backing Santos in this bout and are just here to get a second opinion. If that’s the case, I’ll get to why my prediction for Walker vs. Santos leans towards the Dublin-based Brazilian.

In my opinion, a 37-year-old with dodgy knees is a hard sell. Although a talented mixed martial artist, it’s more plausible to suggest that The Sledgehammer is on the way down.

A three-fight skid involving losses to Jon Jones, Glover Teixeira, and Aleksandr Rakic is tough to take for anyone. But the aforementioned trio being highly skilled fighters does not negate the fact that they are losses.

Walker comes into this fight eight years younger. Having shifted to SBG Ireland to win titles, he’s also going to have some of the best brains in the business behind him.

Although he suffered back-to-back losses before starching Ryan Spann inside the first round in September 2020, there is a case to argue in favor of him being better for the experience.

Unpredictable, fast, and devastatingly powerful, I believe he will take the fight to Santos and overwhelm him from the first bell. His compatriot is a smart fighter, but one that is something of a slow starter.

Walker by first-round KO is my prediction.

Final Words on Santos vs. Walker at UFC Vegas 38

The value is with Johnny Walker leaving the cage with a win over Thiago Santos this Saturday, October 2. 

I believe he has the style to take it to Santos and earn a spectacular knockout win.

That would greatly help his chances of fighting for the title if he can get past a seasoned veteran in “Maretta,” and he just so happens to have the right style for his man.

There are some other big fights on the night, with plenty more top bouts set to fall upon us in October. You can find our recommended UFC betting picks by hitting the button 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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