UFC 268: Usman vs Covington odds and predictions
Guy Giles makes his pick as Kamaru Usman defends his UFC welterweight title against Colby Covington at UFC 268 in New York.
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Usman vs Covington odds
UFC welterweight champion Kamaru Usman will defend his belt for a fifth time on Saturday in a highly anticipated rematch with Colby Covington at Madison Square Garden.
Usman finished Covington in the fifth round of their first meeting in December 2019, following a back-and-forth fight in which the challenger gave the champ a real test.
‘The Nigerian Nightmare’ has since gone on to cement his legacy as one of the best welterweights ever, securing two further stoppages in three fights against Gilbert Burns and Jorge Masvidal.
Usman heads to New York as the No. 1-ranked men’s pound-for-pound fighter in the UFC, and is a -320 favourite to beat Covington again on Saturday.
Covington has been far less active in the time since these two first fought, with a TKO win over former champion Tyron Woodley in September 2020 his only bout in nearly two years.
There is little doubt that Covington remains one of the elite fighters in the division, but his inactivity and the damage he took against Usman previously means he is a heavy underdog.
Usman vs Covington prediction
Usman is one of the most dominant fighters in the UFC right now, and it’s hard to see the hype train being derailed in New York.
Covington put up an admirable fight in their first meeting, rocking Usman with some good shots, but never really threatening the finish.
Surprisingly, in a contest between two high-level wrestlers, that fight featured no takedown attempts from either man as they decided to slug it out.
Covington would do well to go back to his wrestling a bit more in this one, but Usman’s size advantage and grappling skills of his own mean he is likely to find little encouragement there.
The fact is, Usman is simply a bigger, stronger, better fighter than Covington and, barring a shock, should continue his road to greatness at the Garden.
Covington has proved his toughness beyond doubt, so this is unlikely to be a quick finish, but the damage that Usman can deal out over five rounds is likely to produce another stoppage.
Look for Usman to wear Covington down and secure the KO in the later rounds.
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