Jose Aldo has been fighting in the UFC since Petr Yan was in high school. He’s won 28 bouts in his professional career and is a former featherweight titleholder. Aldo is a living legend in the octagon, but he isn’t getting much credit from Vegas oddsmakers ahead of his title fight against Yan at UFC 251. Yan is a heavy favorite against the UFC veteran, and a majority of the public believes he will make quick work of Aldo. We’ve seen experience trump skill before in title fights. Will we see it again at UFC 251?
UFC 251 betting odds: Petr Yan is a -225 favorite against Jose Aldo
Petr Yan has less than half the experience Jose Aldo boasts in the UFC. Yan has just 15 career fights to his name, while Aldo has 34. Although the promising Russian is new to the title fight scene, that isn’t stopping Vegas from making him a hefty favorite against the veteran Aldo.
Yan currently stands as a -225 favorite against Aldo for UFC 251. If you place a $225 bet on Yan Saturday night, a win will earn you a profit of $100. Aldo comes in as a +188 underdog to upset the Russian. A $100 bet on Aldo would earn you a $188 profit if he does pull off the upset.
Yan is 14-1 in his young professional career, but he’s already ranked No. 3 in the bantamweight division. Aldo is ranked No. 6.
Jose Aldo has the physical advantage against Petr Yan
The tale of the tape for Yan vs. Aldo is about as tight as you’ll ever see a UFC title fight. Both athletes weigh in at 135 pounds and stand at 5-foot-7. The only physical advantage in the bout points to Aldo, whose 70-inch reach is three inches longer than Yan’s 67-inch mark.
Aldo’s reach advantage will allow him to keep his distance from the dangerous finisher in Yan. If Yan gets close enough to rock Aldo with punch after punch, he’ll be able to cruise to a victory Saturday night. But if Aldo can keep his distance and counterstrike at the right times, he can frustrate Yan and lead him into careless mistakes.
Yan wants to finish Aldo before the five-round fight reaches a decision. Aldo can use his length advantage to keep Yan at bay and ultimately leave the fight up to the judges.
Is Jose Aldo undervalued with his huge experience advantage?
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Besides his longer reach, Aldo has a huge advantage in experience. Not only has he fought in more than double the amount of fights Yan has, but Aldo has immense experience in title fights. This is Yan’s first appearance in a title bout.
Fights have a much different feel when there’s a belt on the line. There’s more pressure. More eyes are on you than ever before. More rounds to survive.
Saturday night will mark Aldo’s 15th title fight in his MMA career. He’s used to the five-round format and the pressure that comes with it. Yan is stepping into unfamiliar territory. He hasn’t competed in a five-round bout yet in his UFC career.
If Aldo can survive the first few rounds and tire Yan out by the fourth or fifth, he has a real chance to upset the favorite.
Betting odds courtesy of FanDuel