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UFC 297 Odds, Picks, Predictions & UFC Best Bets For Strickland vs. Du Plessis

Adam Martin for Bookies.com

Adam Martin  | 11 mins

UFC 297 Odds, Picks, Predictions & UFC Best Bets For Strickland vs. Du Plessis

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The first UFC pay-per-view card of 2024 goes down this Saturday at Scotiabank Arena in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. The card features 11 fights in total, including two title fights at the top of the billing. 

In the main event, UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland puts his belt on the line when he meets Dricus Du Plessis. 

We will break down the two title fights plus one of the preliminary card fights as we give you our Bookies.com best bets for UFC 297 right here.

Favorite Underdog
Sean Strickland | -135 Dricus Du Plessis | +114

Odds via DraftKings sportsbook and current as of publication. Check out our DraftKings sportsbook review.

UFC 297 Main Event Best Bet

Sean Strickland (-135) vs. Dricus Du Plessis (+114)

In the UFC 297 main event, UFC middleweight champion Sean Strickland fights Dricus Du Plessis. Although he is a +114 betting underdog, I like Du Plessis to win the belt.

Strickland is the UFC middleweight champion and he has a 15-5 record in the UFC since joining the promotion a decade ago. The 33-year-old American has been incredible since moving up to the 185 lbs weight class, going 8-2 overall at middleweight, including an upset decision win over former long-time champion Israel Adesanya in his last bout. 

Strickland has some of the best boxing in all of the UFC, he has incredible cardio, and he has solid takedown defense too. The one knock on Strickland is his chin, as he’s been knocked out several times in the UFC. But overall, he is a tremendous fighter who has shown over the years that he is very talented.

Du Plessis is a perfect 6-0 so far in the UFC with five of those wins coming by way of stoppage. The 30-year-old South African has been extremely impressive so far, defeating fighters such as former UFC champion Robert Whittaker by knockout in his last bout.

Du Plessis is a powerful striker who has huge knockout power, he has slick submissions on the ground, he is durable, and his cardio has held up better than expected so far in the Octagon. 

Against Strickland, Du Plessis is taking on someone who has some of the best conditioning in the sport, so to have the most success, Du Plessis would likely have his best chance to win by going for an early stoppage.

Strickland is a great fighter and seeing him beat Adesanya last year to win the belt was one of the biggest title fight surprises of all time. But I think he will lose his title in his first defense. 

I like Du Plessis to get the win in this fight, and I see him swarming Strickland and finishing him via knockout early in the fight. Give me Du Plessis to win at +114 and take him to win by TKO.

UFC 297 Best Bet: Dricus Du Plessis wins at -135 with DraftKings Sportsbook  

UFC 297 Best Prop Bet: Dricus Du Plessis wins by TKO with DraftKings Sportsbook  

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UFC 297 Co-Main Event Best Bet

Mayra Bueno Silva (-162) vs. Raquel Pennington (+136)

In the co-main event, Mayra Bueno Silva fights Raquel Pennington for the vacant women’s UFC bantamweight title. Despite being a +136 betting underdog, I like Pennington to get the upset.

Silva is 32 and she is 5-2-1, 1 NC so far in the UFC. She is a very dangerous fighter both standing and on the ground, but she especially excels on the floor, having won four fights by submission so far in the UFC. That would be five submission wins, however, her submission win over Holly Holm in her last bout was overturned to a No Contest after a positive drug test for Adderall. 

She will now look to bounce back here against Pennington. The Brazilian overall has looked tremendous since moving up to 135 lbs, having gone 3-0, 1 NC in this weight class. There is a lot to like about Silva and she is the favorite here to come home with the vacant belt.

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Pennington is 35 and she has a 12-5 record in the UFC. She has been in the UFC for over a decade and has fought pretty much everyone at 135 lbs over the years. She has had a tremendous amount of success, only losing five times – and all of those losses came against former UFC champions. 

Pennington is very tough having only been finished once in the Octagon, she has the cardio to go the full 25 minutes, and she is just solid everywhere. She is not the most exciting fighter to watch, but she is effective at what she does. Against Silva, she will need to mind her Ps and Qs early on, because as the fight goes on, it will give her the edge.

Silva is a very talented and skilled fighter, but Pennington is a proven veteran who is one of the most underrated fighters in her weight class. Although Silva will likely do well early in this fight, I see Pennington as the fighter who has the better cardio, and I think this fight being five rounds favors her. Go with Pennington to get the upset at +136 and take her to win the belt by decision.

UFC 297 Best Bet: Pennington wins at +136 with  DraftKings Sportsbook

UFC 297 Best Prop Bet: Raquel Pennington wins by decision with DraftKings Sportsbook

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UFC 297 Early Prelims Best Bet

Jasmine Jasudavicius (-360) vs. Priscila Cachoeira (+285)

On the prelims, Canadian Jasmine Jasudavicius takes on Priscila Cachoeira in a women’s flyweight contest. Jasudavicius is a -360 favorite, and I like her to win this fight.

Jasudavicius is 34 years old and the Canadian has a 3-2 record so far in the UFC. She is a strong grappler who has taken down four of her five UFC opponents, she has good cardio, and she is very tough. 

Her standup is her weakness as she has a negative striking differential in her UFC career so far, so this is something she needs to work on going forward. But there is no doubt she is a very durable fighter who can take her opponents to deep waters and drown them. The longer the fight goes, the more it favors Jasudavicius, who has a solid ground game.

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Cachoeira is 35 and she has a 4-5 record so far in the UFC. The Brazilian is a powerful striker who has won three fights by knockout so far in the Octagon, and she is incredibly dangerous early on in the fight. 

However, she is one-dimensional as her ground game is quite poor, having been submitted three times in the Octagon. In fact, in four of her five losses, she was taken down to the floor. 

Against Jasudavicius, she will look to keep this fight on her feet. If the fight goes to the ground, she will surely be in trouble, so to win, she will need to keep this standing.

This is the biggest mismatch on the card according to the betting odds, and for good reason, as Jasudavicius should have Cachoeira covered everywhere. 

Look for Jasudavicius to lean on her size and strength here as she gets Cachoeira to the ground and beats her there. Take Jasudavicus to win the fight as a -360 favorite and take her to win this fight by submission.

UFC 297 Best Bet: Jasmine Jasudavicius wins at -360 with DraftKings Sportsbook

UFC 297 Best Prop Bet: Jasmine Jasudavicius wins by submission with   DraftKings Sportsbook

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About the Author

Adam Martin for Bookies.com
Adam Martin
A writer based out of Toronto, Adam Martin has covered professional sports, with an emphasis on sports gambling, for more than a decade, writing for such outlets as The Toronto Star and Sportsnet. He is an expert in UFC, while also covering NHL betting and the Stanley Cup.