On Saturday, January 23rd, the UFC will return to PPV for the first time in the New Year for a major event featuring the return of Conor McGregor.
UFC 257: Poirier vs McGregor 2 will be live from the Etihad Arena on Yas Island, Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, with a main event rematch as Dustin Poirier battles Conor McGregor. The winner of this bout is expected to be thrusted into a lightweight title shot in the very near future.
In addition to the highly anticipated main event, the co-featured bout will be another lightweight showdown as Dan Hooker takes on Michael Chandler.
As the UFC 257 card continues to be sculpted into a PPV spectacle, this UFC 257 page will be your hub for all of the latest news, betting information, predictions, and more. Our UFC 257 hub will be updated on a consistent basis all the way up to fight night.
If you are looking to bet on UFC 257: Poirier vs McGregor 2 then step inside the betting octagon with us and check out our complete UFC 257 betting guide.
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Conor McGregor returns to the octagon for the first time in a year as he battles the rugged Dustin Poirier in a rematch from their UFC 178 fight that saw McGregor beat Poirier via 1st round TKO.
Don’t expect Poirier to get stopped in the 1st round of this fight. In fact, he might not get stopped at all. Since their first fight, Poirier has significantly improved. He’s gone 10-2 since then and even captured the interim lightweight title.
McGregor will get the win as he’s still the better overall fighter between the two, but it will be far more competitive than the first contest. Could we see something similar to the Poirier vs Hooker fight from last summer?
Michael Chandler (21-5) vs Dan Hooker (20-9)
This is going to be an exciting co-main event as the former Bellator champion Michael Chandler makes his octagon debut. The UFC didn’t do him any favors as they matched him up against the #6 ranked lightweight in Dan Hooker.
Furthermore, Hooker will have at least four inches in height and reach advantage. His last bout came in June 2020 where he lost via unanimous decision to Dustin Poirier in a five round war. It was one of the best fights of 2020. Prior to that, he had won three straight contests.
Chandler is 9-2 in his last 11 bouts and a two time champ during that span. Chandler will successfully navigate Hooker’s length to do his damage on the inside or the mat. Chandler will edge out Hooker via split decision.
Joanne Calderwood (14-5) vs Jessica Eye (15-8)
This is a Top 7 women’s flyweight battle as the #6 ranked Jessica Eye takes on the #7 ranked Joanne Calderwood.
Calderwood comes into the matchup having gone 2-2 in her last four fights and a loss in her last bout. Eye also lost in her last bout and has an identical 2-2 record in her last four contests.
This bout will go the full distance and Calderwood should be able to get the decision victory in another close fight.
Amanda Ribas (10-1) vs Marina Rodriguez (12-1-2)
This is a Top 9 strawweight battle as the #8 Marina Rodriguez takes on the surging #9 Amanda Ribas.
Rodriguez has fared well inside the octagon at 2-1-2. However, she suffered the first loss of her career in July 2020 via split decision.
Ribas has been impressive since joining the UFC going 4-0 with solid wins over Whitmire, Dern, Markos and VanZant. She has a nice blend of skills that will prove too difficult for Rodriguez to overcome despite having the height and reach advantages.
Take Ribas to win this bout via unanimous decision.
Ottman Azaitar (13-0) vs Matt Frevola (8-1-1)
Frevola has gone 2-1-1 inside the octagon since joining in late 2018. He’s riding a two fight win streak, but hasn’t competed in 15 months.
Azaitar will step back inside the octagon after making an impressive statement in September when he defeated Khama Worthy via 1st round TKO.
10 of his 13 pro wins have come via 1st round stoppage with eight of them by way of TKO/KO. He’s won three straight fights via 1st round TKO/KO. Take Azaitar to win via stoppage. The only question is whether it will be in the 1st round or not.
Antonio Carlos Jr. (10-4) vs Brad Tavares (17-6)
This is a battle between two UFC veterans looking for a win. Tavares enters riding a two fight losing streak after winning four in a row. Carlos Jr. also enters on a two fight losing streak. However, he had won five fights in a row prior to the losses.
Both fighters did not compete in 2019. So, it remains to be seen if either competitor has made some changes to break their losing streak.
Tavares’ last two losses were to Adesanya and Shahbazyan. He has the better resume as well. He seems to struggle against the elite fighters of the division for which Carlos Jr. is not. Tavares should win this fight via decision.
Nik Lentz (30-11-2) vs Movsar Evloev (13-0)
A late addition to the UFC 257 lineup features the longtime UFC veteran Nik Lentz taking on the unbeaten Movsar Evloev.
Lentz has been with the UFC since 2009 and has a respectable record inside the octagon. However, he’s gone 2-3 in his last five bouts including two losses in a row.
Lentz was supposed to fight Mike Grundy, but the latter was removed. Evloev just beat Grundy in his last bout which came in July 2020. He’s now 3-0 inside the octagon.
Take Evloev to control this bout and grind out his 4th straight decision win.
Nasrat Haqparast (12-3) vs Arman Tsarukyan (15-2)
Nasrat Haqparast is 4-2 inside the octagon and was victorious in his last fight where he defeated Alex Munoz via decision four months ago.
Arman Tsarukyan is 2-1 inside the octagon and enters on a two fight winning streak. He last competed in July 2020 and beat Davi Ramos via decision.
Tsarukyan appears to be the better prospect of the two and will most likely score a decision win in this contest.
Marcin Prachnio (13-5) vs Khalil Rountree (8-4)
Prachnio is in desperate need of a victory having dropped three straight contests, which all took place inside the octagon. A 4th straight loss could see the Polish light heavyweight get bounced from the UFC.
Rountree has had some ups and downs as of late. He’s alternated between wins and losses over the last two years. However, those two losses have come via TKO/KO in the 1st round.
Fortunately for Rountree, he’s taking on a fighter that shouldn’t be too difficult to overcome. Rountree will most likely pick up the victory via TKO/KO.
Sara McMann (12-5) vs Julianna Pena (9-4)
Sara McMann is looking to get back into the Top 15 in the rankings of the women’s bantamweight division. She snapped a two fight losing streak by scoring a unanimous decision win one year ago.
Julianna Pena is currently ranked 15th in the division, but has dropped two of her last three fights. Yet, she still have a 5-2 record overall in the UFC. And, those two losses were to Germaine de Randamie in October and Valentina Shevchenko four years ago.
McMann’s biggest weakness is going up against an opponent with a top notch ground game. Fortunately, she won’t have to worry about that in this bout. Take McMann to win via decision.
Makhmud Muradov (24-6) vs Andrew Sanchez (12-5)
Sanchez last fought in August and scored a 1st round KO over Wellington Turman. It improved his overall record to 5-3 inside the octagon.
Muradov has gone 2-0 in the UFC since joining in late 2019. He didn’t fight at all in 2020, but will enter this contest riding a 13 fight win streak. His last loss came a little over four years ago.
Over the last few years, Muradov has been more impressive than Sanchez and appears to have the skillset to pull off his third victory in the octagon and 14th in a row.
Amir Albazi (13-1) vs Zhalgas Zhumagulov (13-4)
This is going to be a tight contest between two prospects looking to gain some traction in the UFC.
Zhumagulov earned a shot with the UFC after a solid tenure with FNG where he picked up some respectable wins over fighters like Tyson Nam. However, he lost in his UFC debut last July.
Albazi made a pit stop in Bellator three years ago where he went 2-0. He’s won two straight fights including his UFC debut last July. Albazi has eight submission wins and should be able to pick up his 9th against Zhumagulov.
Poirier vs McGregor 2 – UFC 257 Main Event Analysis
In 2014, the first contest between these two top ranked lightweights ended in under two minutes as McGregor stopped Poirier via TKO/KO.
McGregor (22-4) will enter this bout having been inactive for the last year. Yet, reports coming out of his camp say he’s in the best shape of his life.
Poirier (26-6) defeated Dan Hooker in a fight of the year contender last summer and is better suited for McGregor this time around than he was in 2014.
Both men have knockout power, but McGregor appears to have the advantage in this aspect as 86% of his wins have come via TKO/KO whereas only 46% of Poirier’s wins have come via TKO/KO.
Furthermore, McGregor has more pop with his feet than Poirier does, which gives him more of an advantage in the striking department.
McGregor has showed that he can hang with elite grapplers, which Poirier is not. Yet, Poirier still has the slight edge in this area as he has a better submission game and has scored more takedowns per 15 minutes than McGregor has. Poirier has seven submission wins to McGregor’s one.
You have to go with McGregor in this main event contest as he lives for the big fights and PPV attention. This should be a striking battle that goes into the championship rounds where McGregor will eventually score a TKO victory.
Best UFC 257 Bets
Check out our best bets for UFC 257:
Conor McGregor vs Dustin Poirier Over 1.5 Rounds (-145)
As mentioned, this fight is going to be a battle that should go at least into the 3rd round and quite possibly the 4th or 5th round. These two men are highly skilled fighters with top notch striking.
Poirier has the advantage on the mat and could end up trying for takedowns if he gets into trouble in a striking battle.
The first bout ended in less than one round, but this bout should easily surpass that mark and go Over 1.5 rounds.
Amanda Ribas vs Marina Rodriguez Goes the Distance (-190)
Marina Rodriguez has gone the distance in 9 of her 15 pro fights with a record of 6-1-2 in those contests. She’s gone the full 15 minutes in five straight contests and eight of her last nine.
Amanda Ribas has gone the distance in three of her 11 pro bouts including two of her four UFC fights.
Since Rodriguez has never been stopped in her pro career, this bout should go the full three rounds.
Joanne Calderwood vs Jessica Eye Goes the Full Three Rounds (-305)
Joanne Calderwood has gone the distance in 10 of her 19 pro fights including three of her last four bouts.
Jessica Eye has gone the distance in 17 of her 23 pro bouts including nine of her last 10. In fact, Eye has gone the distance in 11 of her 13 UFC bouts.
That’s a combined total of 27 fights that these two women have gone the distance in. This is probably one of the safest bets for the entire UFC 257 event.
Ottman Azaitar Wins Inside the Distance vs Frevola (+125)
Although Frevola has a decent record and some respectable MMA skills, he hasn’t fought in 15 months and is going up against a dangerous striker.
Azaitar is undefeated in his pro career and has already made an impressive mark in the UFC with two 1st round knockout victories. Last September, Azaitar defeated the talented Khama Worthy via 1st round TKO.
12 of his 13 pro wins have come via stoppage with 10 via TKO/KO. He’s only gone the distance in just one pro bout.
In fact, 10 of his 13 pro contests have also ended in the 1st round with eight by TKO/KO. Frevola’s lone loss came via TKO/KO to Marco Polo Reyes and Azaitar seems to be every bit the striker, and then some, compared to Reyes.
Take Azaitar to finish off this fight inside the distance.
Movsar Evloev to Defeat Nik Lentz via Decision (NA)
Since this bout was added recently, many UFC betting sites don’t have odds listed for method of decision, Over/Under and other UFC prop bets. Yet, that doesn’t stop us from picking this wager regardless of odds or value.
Evloev is a buzzsaw who grinds out his opponents. All three of his UFC fights have gone the full 15 minutes. Seven of his 13 pro wins have gone the distance.
For Lentz, 19 of his 43 pro fights have gone the distance. Six of his 11 pro losses have come via decision including three of his last four defeats.
Evloev will control this fight from the opening moments and grind out a 4th straight unanimous decision win inside the octagon.
UFC 257 News
Stay up to date with the latest UFC 257 News:
Burgos vs Dawodu is Off
A featherweight fight between Hakeem Dawodu and Shane Burgos has been cancelled as Dawodu withdrew from the event due to a shoulder injury suffered during training camp. It remains unclear as of now whether or not the UFC plans on finding Burgos another opponent.
Movsar Evloev Gets Nik Lentz
Nik Lentz was set to fight at UFC on ABC 1: Holloway vs Kattar, but his opponent Mike Grundy was forced off the card due to a team member testing positive.
UFC decided to move Lentz to UFC 257 where he will now face the undefeated Movsar Evloev who is returning to the octagon after a December fight was cancelled due to testing positive.
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As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed "King of the Blog" in his first year with the site. ...
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