Conor McGregor may have crushed one of the best fighters the UFC has ever known in his last bout, but according to several oddsmakers, “Notorious” will be the dog when he takes on Rafael dos Anjos…as it stands right now.
Although the UFC has yet to announced it, the word is that the featherweight champ and lightweight champ will throw down at UFC 197 on March 5th. The bout arrives after McGregor KO’d Jose Aldo to take the 145 belt last month, and after RDA stormed through Donald Cerrone to defend the lightweight crown.
Now, since it’s early on, the odds for the UFC 197 headliner are going to change. But, several oddsmakers have McGregor as the underdog in the +100 to +105 ranged. Oddsmaker Joey Odessa recently told MMA Junkie.com the following:
“Conor McGregor has defied the odds, and in spite of him being the betting favorite at fight time in all of his previous bouts at the majority of sports books, he enters UFC 197 as a small underdog at +115 in the early lines that are posted almost a dozen weeks out – and rightfully so. Conor is stepping up a full weight class to challenge Rafael dos Anjos for the lightweight championship after coming off a spectacular, record-breaking knockout of Jose Aldo, who was widely regarded as the No. 1 pound-for-pound fighter in the world.
“Rafael dos Anjos has won 10 of his last 11 bouts, and size and experience do matter. It’s easy to make excuses for Aldo losing the fight, but the fact is Conor proved he is legit. But in this instance, I think he bit off more than he can chew.”
Of course, McGregor boosters will point out that a lot of folks were picking Aldo, and before that Chad Mendes, to defeat the star. In both of those fights, McGregor proved his doubters wrong.
But, to have RDA as a slight favourite does seem completely reasonable. He’s a former welterweight, with great striking, good takedowns and a vaunted top game. So, he will be the biggest and most well rounded fighter McGregor has faced yet in the UFC.
UFC 197 is expected to take place in Las Vegas, and in the co-main event, bantamweight champ Holly Holm will take on Miesha Tate.