Sean O’Malley vs Thomas Almeida Prediction

25 March 2021

UFC Vegas 23

Sean O’Malley -325 vs Thomas Almeida

Fight is at 135 lbs and is -185 to end inside the distance.

Betting Plays: O’Malley ITD -125 and FIght ends ITD -185

This UFC 260 fight is a striker’s delight that should make for a short and disappointing outcome for one of these fighters.

While Thomas Almeida missed two years due to an eye injury, he has put quite a long time in between wins. His last win came in 2016 and is on a three fight skid since that time. His lone fight after the two year layoff was a decision loss to Jonathan Martinez.

We do need to make a note that Martinez was recently knocked out by Davey Grant, which isn’t the best look for Martinez, and perhaps worse for Almeida.

Now, it is not all bad for Almeida. He is a tight striker and he lands plenty of leg kicks in all of his fights, which could be a huge key for him in this one.

Sean O’Malley is a very quick, elusive and powerful striker that continues to have a huge ceiling in MMA. He has had an (no pun intended) Achilles Heel however, and that is he is greatly affected by damage to his legs.

A broken foot put him in danger of losing a fight to Andre Soukhamthath back in 2018, but Soukhathtath did not have the wherewithal to bring the fight back to standing and O’Malley survived. Not that O’Malley was comfortably ahead in that fight, but it would not have been allowed to continue had it returned to the feet and he could not stand.

Most recently he was hurt and dropped by leg kicks from Marlon Vera, and Vera went on to finish him early on in that fight. That is the concern, and honestly the only real concern for O’Malley in this matchup. His other two fights in 2020 were two minute KO wins in which he absorbed a total of four strikes.

Almeida simply is highly unlikely to have the durability to withstand the precision and sneaky power O’Malley brings, and it would something of a surprise if Almeida were able to make it to the second round. That makes the -125 ITD line on O’Malley an extremely attractive one and will be a betting play.

Where we will also get both a double down and a hedge is in playing the fight to end ITD at -185. I am unsure how much weight to put into the concern of O’Malley being soft to the legs, but if they were to give out, this would act as a hedge. If and when the fight goes as expected and O’Malley sleeps Almeida, we cash two tickets at the same time.

Betting Plays: O’Malley ITD -125 and Fight ends ITD -185

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