UFC on ESPN+ 6 Betting Tips, Picks and Predictions

2019 has been a great year so far, and after last weekend’s profit, March is shaping up to be another solid month for us.

We have been bombarded by major MMA events since the beginning of February, and in the next 2 weeks we have 4 more events to look forward to. Bellator 218, Bellator 219, UFC on ESPN+ 6 and UFC on ESPN 2 all take place over the next 2 weeks, giving us multiple opportunities to make money.

Don’t forget that several major betting websites are now offering Live Betting on Bellator events. This means that I’ll be offering my Live Betting Tips and alternate fight commentary this Friday night for Bellator 218.

Please just remember that Live Betting on Bellator is still in its early stages, which means that the overall experience is not as smooth as it is for UFC events. The betting sites are still experimenting with different maximum bet limits and liquidity, and sometimes we see them miss out certain fights on the main card, especially when Bellator reshuffle their main card schedule at late notice.

I recommend signing up to my free Telegram Channel so that you can receive push alerts to your mobile phone letting you know what time Live Betting on Bellator is scheduled to start. At this early stage in the week it’s not possible to confirm yet and even on fight day the start time can change.

Fight Betting Tip Pick
Anthony Pettis vs Stephen Thompson No bet Thompson to win
Curtis Blaydes vs Justin Willis No bet Blaydes to win
John Makdessi vs Jesus Pinedo No bet Makdessi to win
Deiveson Figueiredo vs Jussier Formiga 1 unit on Jussier Formiga to win at odds of 2.40 | +140 | 7/5 Formiga to win
Luis Pena vs Steven Peterson No bet Pena to win
JJ Aldrich vs Maycee Barber No bet Barber to win
Bobby Moffett vs Bryce Mitchell No bet Moffett to win
Frankie Saenz vs Marlon Vera No bet Vera to win
Alexis Davis vs Jennifer Maia No bet Davis to win
Angela Hill vs Randa Markos No bet Markos to win
Chris Gutierrez vs Ryan MacDonald No bet Gutierrez to win
Eric Shelton vs Jordan Espinosa No bet Espinosa to win

Deiveson Figueiredo vs Jussier Formiga Betting Tip and Prediction

When I saw that Jussier Formiga was an underdog to Deiveson Figueiredo, it made no sense to me because there’s nowhere in this matchup where Figueiredo has a significant advantage. Sure he’s more aggressive, and he hits harder, but Formiga is lightyears ahead of him when it comes to grappling. If this fight goes to the ground, Figueiredo will be in big trouble, and pretty much all of his fights end up going to the ground at some point because instinctively he’s a grappler.

If this fight stays standing, I would expect Figueiredo to win. Formiga is one of those guys with a base in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu that focuses more on defending himself when striking as opposed to doing damage. Formiga lacks the power in his hands to hurt his opponents, but a decade of training under Andre Pederneirias alongside killers like Jose Aldo and Renan Barao have helped him develop solid striking defense which makes it difficult for his opponents to have too much success standing. This is backed up by the fact that he has only lost 2 fights due to strikes in his 27 fight career and he hasn’t been KO’d since he fought Joseph Benavidez almost 6 years ago.

Both Formiga and Figueiredo are primarily grapplers, so at some stage, I would expect this fight to the ground, and if it does, Formiga will have a considerable advantage. Formiga’s grappling is several levels above Figueiredo’s, having competed multiple times at the Abu Dhabi World BJJ Championships. Andre Pedernerias, the Head Coach of Nova Uniao brought Formiga into their camp to help his other World Class fighters like Hacran Dias, Jose Aldo, and Renan Barao improve their ground game. Formiga is THAT good on the ground.

If this fight would have taken place 2 years ago, I probably would have passed on Formiga because like many guys with a base in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, he has, in the past struggled to take his opponents down. Throughout his career, Formiga has been one of those guys with a World Class ground game, that has been cursed by an inability to get fights to the ground. In the past, he lacked the kind of offensive wrestling skills required to land takedowns. I guess this isn’t that much of a surprise because he trained at a gym like Nova Uniao, where most of their top fighters like Renan Barao, Jose Aldo, and Junior Dos Santos built an entire career off doing everything they could to keep fights standing. Nova Uniao isn’t exactly the best gym to develop offensive wrestling skills when the majority of their fighters are strikers…

Formiga’s career took a very positive step forward just over 2 years ago after his loss to Ray Borg when he decided to move his family out to Florida so that he could live and train at American Top Team. Since making the transition to ATT, Formiga has gone 3-0 in the UFC, picking up wins against Ulka Sasaki, Ben Nguyen and most recently Sergio Pettis.

It’s a well-known fact that ATT is one of the best gyms in the world, but the improvements we’ve seen Formiga make to his fight IQ, game planning and offensive wrestling over the last 2 years should be enough to encourage any young fighter to book a one-way ticket to Florida ASAP. Formiga’s improvements in the areas I just mentioned are staggering and far surpass what he was able to achieve while training at Nova Uniao for almost a decade.

The 2019 version of Formiga is like an entirely new fighter. In just 2 years at ATT, he has gone from being an opportunistic BJJ based fighter who’s only hope of taking his opponents down was to catch a lazy kick, into an accomplished grappler who can shoot deep double legs, single legs and secure quick body locks that he can turn into trips and throws. Even more impressively is that Formiga has also developed the skills to chain everything together…

With most BJJ based guys we see them fully commit hard to one particular type of takedown and then when their opponent stuffs that initial takedown attempt, they retreat and reset. In Formiga’s last fight against Sergio Pettis, for the first time, he showed an ability to chain wrestle. He’d switch from single legs, to double legs, to back control from a full body lock all in one chained takedown attempt. It was impressive to watch.

I’ve just talked a lot about Formiga’s weaknesses and consequent improvements when it comes to his wrestling, but his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu has never been in question. Formiga’s top game is heavier than a Grand Piano, and there aren’t many guys in the UFC who can take opponents back and control them from back position better than Formiga can. If this fight goes to the ground, Figueiredo is going to have a really tough time getting back to his feet or improving his position.

I guess the only area left to address is Figueiredo’s takedown defense…

If you go and watch Figueiredo’s fight against Jarred Brooks, you’ll see Figueiredo giving up very weak takedowns. He even gives up top position jumping for guillotines on 2 or 3 occasions. This would be suicide against a guy like Formiga.

Figueiredo is a big, strong, powerful Flyweight, so it’s very possible that he could have tightened up this weakness and improved his takedown defense, but he also has an aggressive, chaotic style of fighting that has seen all 4 of his UFC fights go to the ground. Of course, it’s possible that he shows up with an intelligent gameplan to keep this fight standing and shut Formiga’s grappling down, but based on past performances there’s a bloody good chance that in the heat of the moment he jumps guard on a deep guillotine attempt and gives up top position. It’s also likely based on the Brooks fight that Formiga can secure the odd takedown to steal rounds.

There is always risk with every bet that we place and Figueiredo’s advantages when it comes to striking and his compact, powerful frame do leave me a bit concerned that if he really applied himself he could make it very difficult for Formiga to get this fight to the ground. Having said that… Formiga is a moderate underdog in this fight, and he shouldn’t be. His current odds of around 2.40 | +140 | 7/5, give him an Implied Probability of 42% which is straight up inaccurate. This is a no brainer bet for me. AT WORST this is a 50 / 50 fight, giving us a generous 8% margin over where the bookie’s cap this matchup.

Hopefully, Formiga can pick up the win and cash another underdog bet for us, but if he doesn’t, we can be confident in the fact that we’ve got our money in a strong position here. Long term we know we will continue to crush it if we keep getting our money into these strong positions where we have the probabilities and the payoffs on our side. The risk is definitely worth the reward on this bet. Formiga should be the favorite.

Reasons for betting on Jussier Formiga

  • Jussier Formiga has made massive improvements since moving to American Top Team 2 years ago and he continues to make big improvements from fight to fight.
  • Jussier Formiga has a world class ground game. For many years he was one of the BJJ coaches at Nova Uniao and he has also competed at the Abu Dhabi World BJJ Championships.
  • Jussier Formiga has made MASSIVE improvements to his wrestling over the last 2 years. He now has the skills to shoot deep single legs and double legs. He can also secure tight body locks which he does a good job of turning into trips and throws.
  • Jussier Formiga has developed solid chain wrestling skills to transition between different types of takedowns if his initial takedown attempt has been stuffed.
  • Jussier Formiga has good striking defense. He’s only lost due to strikes 2 times in his 27 fight career and hasn’t been KO’d since he lost to Joseph Benavidez 6 years ago.
  • Jussier Formiga has an extremely heavy top game. When he gets top position, it’s very difficult to work your way back to your feet or improve your position.
  • Jussier Formiga does an excellent job of taking his opponent’s back. He also has some of the best back control in the whole of the UFC.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo demonstrated bad takedown defense in his 2nd UFC fight against Jarred Brooks.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo is primarily a grappler, so he always looks to go to the ground with his opponents. All 4 of his fights in the UFC have gone to the ground. This would be a mistake because Formiga is significantly more skilled on the ground.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo gave up top position to Jarred Brooks on 2 or 3 separate occasions when jumping guard on guillotine attempts. This was a huge positional mistake and a sign of bad fight IQ. It would be a terrible idea to give up top position to someone with a heavy top game like Formiga.
  • Jussier Formiga has excellent MMA grappling. He very rarely gives up position.
  • In many ways Formiga’s ground game is similar to Demian Maia’s. You rarely see him go for submissions. Instead he chooses to methodically work through positions and once he advances into a more dominant position he doesn’t give you any opportunities to get that position back. He’s devastating.

Risk Factors with betting on Jussier Formiga

  • Deiveson Figueiredo has an advantage when it comes to striking. He should win if he can keep this fight standing.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo is a strong, powerful, compact athlete. If he focused on fighting smart and sticking to a gameplan it’s very possible that he could have developed the level of takedown defense required to keep this fight standing.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo hits very hard.
  • Deiveson Figueiredo is tough and aggressive.
  • This fight could end up being close if Formiga gets put into a defensive shell via Deiveson Figueiredo’s power strikes and chooses not to fully commit to many takedowns.
  • In an effort to pace himself, Formiga only fully commits to 1 or 2 big takedown attempts per round. If Figueiredo focuses all his efforts on reading the takedown entries and shutting them down when they come, he should be able to win this fight standing.

My Betting Tip

Jussier Formiga to win

Recommended Stake

1 Unit

[1% of your bankroll]


Decimal = 2.40
Moneyline = +140
Fractional = 7/5


Implied Probability

The bookies believe that Jussier Formiga has a 42% chance of beating Deiveson Figueiredo based on their current odds.


Our Probability

I believe that Jussier Formiga has a 55% chance of beating Deiveson Figueiredo based on my extensive research and analysis.

I'm a Professional Gambler from the UK. I specialize in betting on MMA. I've got 1 kid, a Shih Tzu and I've been making money from gambling for around 8 years now.

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