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UFC Futures: Who Will Be Champions By The End Of 2024?

Adam Martin for Bookies.com

Adam Martin  | 14 mins

UFC Futures: Who Will Be Champions By The End Of 2024?

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The UFC is arguably at the height of its popularity right now following the incredible UFC 300 card last weekend in Las Vegas. The event featured one of the best knockouts of all time when Max Holloway knocked out Justin Gaethje with just one second left in the fifth round of their all-time classic. Now, Holloway will likely be getting a UFC featherweight title shot against the current champion Ilia Topuria. If you think he will win the belt, you can bet on him to be the champ.

Right now, BetMGM Sportsbook has UFC futures bets for all divisions, meaning you can wager on who you think will hold the belt by the end of the year. In this guide on UFC futures, we will go through all 11 of the UFC weight classes and give our best bets to be champs. There are eight men’s champions in the UFC, plus three women’s champions.

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Without further ado, let’s take a look at the UFC futures to be champ by the end of 2024. We will give you the odds for the current champion, the betting odds of who the books think will be the champ by year’s end, a dark horse in each weight class (minimum odds of +500), and our best bet.

Note: to win your bet, your fighter will have to be the champion on December 31, 2024.

UFC Heavyweight Division (265 lbs)

*No odds available. Jon Jones is the UFC heavyweight champion and Tom Aspinall is the UFC interim champion but neither currently has a fight booked. We are hopeful odds will be added for the UFC heavyweight division once there is more clarity for the title picture with the two titles.

UFC Light Heavyweight Division (205 lbs)

  • Current champion: Alex Pereira -164
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Alex Pereira -164
  • Dark horse: Jan Blachowicz +5000

Although Pereira is a great fighter, you have to like the odds on Ankalaev here. Many already consider him the best light heavyweight in the UFC, but he just needs the chance to prove it. Ankalaev matches up fairly well with Pereira, so given the odds, he’s a good bet at plus money.

UFC Best Bet: Magomed Ankalaev +150 at BetMGM

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UFC Middleweight Division (185 lbs)

Current champion: Dricus Du Plessis +125

Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Dricus Du Plessis +125

Dark horse: Sean Strickland +1000

I’m not betting against Du Plessis. He is the best middleweight in the world right now, and with no fight booked, it seems likely he will only fight once for the rest of this year. He will likely face Israel Adesanya next, so if Du Plessis wins that fight, then he should be able to cash this bet.

UFC Best Bet: Dricus Du Plessis +125 at BetMGM

UFC Welterweight Division (170 lbs)

  • Current champion: Leon Edwards +125
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Leon Edwards/Shavkat Rahkmonov +125 (tie)
  • Dark horse: Ian Garry +1000

Edwards is a tremendous fighter, but I like Rakhmonov to have the belt by year’s end. He is one of the most dangerous welterweights on the planet, and he just needs a chance to show it. Edwards will likely fight twice this year, once in the summer against Belal Muhammad and once by year’s end against Rakhmonov, and I like the Kazakh fighter to get the belt on his waist.

UFC Best Bet: Shavkat Rakhmonov +125 at BetMGM

UFC Lightweight Division (155 lbs)

Current champion: Islam Makhachev -333

Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Islam Makhachev -333

Dark horse: Conor McGregor +4000

It’s hard not to like Makhachev here to still hold the UFC lightweight title. He’s fighting Dustin Poirier next at UFC 302 in June, and he’s a heavy favorite to win that. Should he win that fight, he will likely have to fight one more time after that, and he’ll be favored to win that fight, too

UFC Best Bet: Islam Makhachev -333

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UFC Featherweight Division (145 lbs)

  • Current champion: Ilia Topuria -182
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Ilia Topuria -182
  • Dark horse: Movsar Evloev +800

How do you not take Holloway here at +150? Yes, Topuria is an amazing fighter and he is the current champion. But after seeing Holloway smoke Gaethje up a weight class at UFC 300, betting on him to get his belt back seems like a worthwhile idea, especially at these odds.

UFC Best Bet: Max Holloway +150 at BetMGM

UFC Bantamweight Division (135 lbs)

  • Current champion: Sean O’Malley +125
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Merab Dvalishvili -115
  • Dark horse: Jonathan Martinez +2500

As much as I like Dvalishvili, it’s hard not to be tempted by the plus-money on O’Malley here. He is already the champion and he hasn’t shown any signs of slowing down. Dvalishvili may be the man to beat him, but considering the plus money you get on O’Malley, I like the value of this bet. He probably just needs one more title defense, likely against Dvalishvili, to score this bet.

UFC Best Bet: Sean O’Malley +125 at BetMGM

UFC Flyweight Division (125 lbs)

  • Current champion: Alexandre Pantoja -110
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Alexandre Pantoja -110
  • Dark horse: Manel Kape +700

Although he is still young, the odds on Mokaev seem too wide here. Pantoja is fighting Steve Erceg next, and if he wins that fight, it’s possible Mokaev could be next in line to fight for the belt, although he may need one more win. Given the 8-to-1 odds here on Mokaev, it looks like a good value play here to take a shot on the youngster to hold the belt, given these crazy odds.

UFC Best Bet: Muhammad Mokaev +800 at BetMGM

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UFC Women’s Bantamweight Division (135 lbs)

  • Current champion: Raquel Pennington +400
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Kayla Harrison -141
  • Dark horse: Norma Dumont +1000

We have to go with Harrison here. After blasting through Holly Holm in her promotional debut at UFC 300, it’s pretty clear she is going to do well in the Octagon. She matches up well with the other top contenders, and with her having a big name, it makes sense she is the favorite here as she will likely be next in line to get a title shot in this weight class. Harrison will likely get a title shot against the champ Pennington later this year, and she will be favored to win.

UFC Best Bet: Kayla Harrison -141 at BetMGM

UFC Women’s Flyweight Division (125 lbs)

  • Current champion: Alexa Grasso +100
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Alexa Grasso +100
  • Dark horse: Maycee Barber +1300

This is a timing play. It seems likely that Grasso will have a trilogy match with Valentina Shevchenko in September at UFC 306, which takes place at the Sphere in Las Vegas. She is favored to win that fight, and since it will be the only time she fights this year, that means she just needs to win that one fight to still be the champion by the end of the year.

UFC Best Bet: Alexa Grasso +100 at BetMGM

UFC Women’s Strawweight Division (115 lbs)

  • Current champion: Weili Zhang -175
  • Favorite to be champion at year’s end: Weili Zhang -175
  • Dark horse: Virna Jandiroba +1000

Zhang is a great champion, but it’s hard not to like Suarez here to be the champ by year’s end. If she’s healthy, she is the most dominant wrestler in the weight class today. Since this will likely be her next title fight, Suarez will likely just have to beat Zhang once to cash this bet.

UFC Best Bet:   Tatiana Suarez +100 at BetMGM

Overall, there looks to be plenty of betting value with these UFC futures. Bet on all of your favorite sports right now at BetMGM Sportsbook, including the UFC! Right now, sign up for the BetMGM bonus code BOOKIES and get back up to $1,500 in bonus bets if your first bet loses.

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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.