UFC Tips: Our Tasty 24/1 Treble for UFC 291 in Salt Lake City

Our tipster Aaron Nolan finds three value picks for Saturday night's fighting stateside.


UFC 291 Betting Tips

3:15am – Kevin Holland v Michael Chiesa – Michael Chiesa to Win by Decision
4:45am –  Jan Blachowicz v – Alex Pereira – Jan Blachowicz to Win
5:15am – Dustin Poirier v Justin Gaethje – Justin Gaethje to Win by KO/TKO

**Times listed are all estimated GMT start time

*A Treble on these selections adds up to around 24/1 with Paddy Power. TAP HERE TO ADD TO YOUR BETSLIP INSTANTLY.

UFC 291 – Salt Lake City, USA
TV: BT Sport 1, BT Sport Box Office 

UFC 291 is a stacked card. Every single fighter on the main card has headlined a UFC event before with five of the 10 fighters previously holding an interim or undisputed UFC World Championship belt.

Which makes it ironic that the only thing on the line on Saturday night is the title of Baddest Motherf***er. Whether you’re into the BMF title or not, it’s sure to be an incredible night of fights. And picking a few winners will make it that bit better. Here are my best picks.

Kevin Holland vs Michael Chiesa – Michael Chiesa to win by Decision

Sunday, 3:15am

The way I see it, Michael Chiesa has one really good path to victory here. He has to take Holland down and control him for two of three rounds where he can win by decision. And that is Chiesa’s whole thing – he averages 3.39 successful takedowns per 15 minutes. In his last three wins, he got a total of 15 takedowns winning all three by decision.

That’s also been Kevin Holland’s kryptonite. Marvin Vettori took him down a record 11 times to win by decision. Derek Brunson got six takedowns before winning by decision. Since those back-to-back losses, Kevin Holland started focusing on wrestling in his training camps. It is working, he’s definitely looked harder to take down in more recent fights. And when Holland gets dragged down to the canvas, he doesn’t accept the bottom position anymore – he actually tries to get back to his feet.

Aside from the defensive wrestling growth made in the last couple years, I’m also concerned about Holland’s striking advantage over Chiesa. But the blueprint is there for Chiesa and the price is attractive. Michael Chiesa to Win on Points.

Jan Blachowicz vs Alex Pereira – Jan Blachowicz to Win

Sunday, 4:45am

This should feel like déjà vu for Jan Blachowicz. He man-handled Israel Adesanya when Stylebender went up a division to take a shot at Jan’s light heavyweight belt. Jan has since lost the title, but he’s got another 6’4” elite kickboxer on his hands in Alex ‘Poatan’ Pereira coming up from middleweight.

In the Izzy fight, Jan was stronger, more aggressive, he got takedowns and control time on the ground. He’ll be looking to repeat that formula on Saturday.

Pereira was huge for the weight class when he fought at middleweight. Poatan has conceded that edge as he gave himself just three months since his last fight to make the giant 20lb leap up to light heavyweight. Unsurprisingly, he looks no bigger. He actually looks the exact same just without the chiselled abs. Blachowicz will be the bigger, stronger man in the octagon.
Pereira’s wrestling and ground-game has largely been untested in the UFC. Jan’s got a black belt in jiu-jitsu. He should try to take him down and take advantage of Pereira’s potential weaknesses there.

Jan’s won a fight like this before. I’m picking him to do it again.


Dustin Poirier vs Justin Gaethje – Justin Gaethje to Win by KO/TKO

Sunday, 5:15am

The BMF belt is back on the line four years after the first and only BMF title match was held between Nate Diaz and Jorge Masvidal. There couldn’t be a more fitting fight for the BMF title to make its return as this promises to be an absolute war.

I think Gaethje will win that war, mainly because of Gaethje’s destructive power. On average Justin ‘The Highlight’ Gaethje lands and absorbs over seven strikes per minute. Despite the 1-for-1 trade with his opponents, Justin inflicts tons more damage with his powerful leg kicks and looping punches than his opponents can inflict on him.

Poirier is the more technical boxer. But I’m not too worried about it. Gaethje can turn the fight into a brawl like he does every fight. He has an incredible ability to find the target with big punches in a chaotic exchange. That’s how he was able to overcome Muay Thai expert Rafael Fiziev in March. That’s how he can beat Dustin Poirier.

Another potential factor is the altitude in Salt Lake City, Utah and the impact it could have on Poirier’s cardio. Salt Lake City is 4,200 feet above sea level. Gaethje trains in Colorado, 5,000 feet above sea level so it shouldn’t have a negative impact on him. While Poirier does train at sea level in California and may struggle to acclimatise.

Gaethje doesn’t stop putting pressure on until the final bell. So if this goes into the championship rounds, Dustin Poirier could start to fade. Dustin won the first time out in 2018 against an unpolished Justin Gaethje. But The Highlight has made large gains in the past 5 years. Justin Gaethje to Win by KO/TKO.

UFC 291 Betting Tips

Kevin Holland v Michael Chiesa – Michael Chiesa to Win by Decision
Jan Blachowicz v – Alex Pereira – Jan Blachowicz to Win
Dustin Poirier v Justin Gaethje – Justin Gaethje to Win by KO/TKO

*A Treble on these selections adds up to around 24/1 with Paddy Power. TAP HERE TO ADD TO YOUR BETSLIP INSTANTLY.

*All prices are bang up to date with our snazzy widgets, while odds in copy are accurate at time of publishing but subject to change




What do you think?