We’re back with another hot prospect UFC betting pick of the week. This time we’ll head to Madison Square Garden for an eagerly anticipated UFC 281 pay-per-view card.
Who knows what was in Ottman Azaitars’ bag during the Fight Island drama in 2021? But that doesn’t matter because the previously suspended German-born fighter is back to extend his 13-0 MMA record against Matt Frevola.
Read on for our complete UFC 281 betting guide, taking a first look at the hottest prospect of the week, Ta, and his opponent, Na. Our preview includes the latest UFC odds and our free expert UFC best bet of the week.
Ottman Azaitar vs. Matt Frevola
UFC 281 Lightweight Bout
Saturday, November 12, 2022 – 06:00 PM EST at Madison Square Garden
- Pro MMA Record: (13-0-0) (10 knockouts, 2 submissions, 1 decision)
Due to his removal from the UFC rankings after violating the COVID-19 rules in 2021, it’s now been over two years since we’ve seen Ottman Azaitar compete in the octagon. However, we can’t forget his prior success for the company, which involved two consecutive KO/TKO victories.
Azaitar, 32, began his mixed martial arts journey at the tender age of six. From jiu-jitsu to boxing, muay thai, and kickboxing, he obtained multiple titles in multiple disciplines, thus leading him to become a full-time MMA competitor in 2014.
He quickly became the Brave FC lightweight champion between 2016-2018, and it was almost destined for him to arrive in the UFC with such an impressive and undefeated record supported by countless knockout successes.
Azaitar Arriving at the UFC
Once situated amongst the UFC’s lightweight competitors, Azaitar instantly made an impact with a round-one knockout over Teemu Packalen. He then further extend his unblemished resume and popularity with another round-one stoppage win over Khama Worthy.
The UFC has reinstated Azaitar and rescheduled the initial 2021 meeting with Matt Frevola they had planned for Fight Island.
Another dominant performance from the German-Moroccan fighter at UFC 281 on Saturday could dramatically increase his stock and perhaps provide fight fans with a top-15 competitor in the near future.
Ottman vs. Azaitar Fight Analysis
As a former muay thai champion, an avid boxer, and kickboxer, and the owner of 10 professional MMA wins via knockout, even the most casual fight fan will already know where Azaitar’s skillset flourishes.
However, he’s notably shown an avid ability to defend grappling situations, and lock-up submission holds during his MMA tenure. Let’s not forget, Azaitar initially began jiu-jitsu as a child. Although it’s easy to neglect his grappling offense/defense because of how talented his striking is, it’s worth noting that he’s a complete martial artist who can force a striking battle where he’s found most of his career success.
Azaitar is highly skilled in the striking game, often using faints to cause a misdirection for the opposition so he can land the fight-ending blows. Every punch thrown is fast and delivered with the intent to finish fights.
Listening to the impact of his strikes echo the empty arena of the UFC Apex is a sound bite we won’t have at MSG this weekend. However, the velocity and viciousness will still be present while causing damage to Frevola’s head and body.
Azaitar vs. Frevola Betting Pick and Odds
Matt Frevola (9-3-1) isn’t a stylistic bout I expected the UFC to place Azaitar in, but this is where the undefeated prospect can prove his worth. Frevola is predominantly a wrestler and will want this fight to play out on the ground.
But as previously mentioned, our prospect is a complete martial artist, and if the takedowns are sprawled and the fight remains standing, Frevola doesn’t stand a chance at surviving the complete three rounds.
The UFC Vegas 64 betting odds at top-rated sportsbooks favor Frevola, and I’m not sure why? Perhaps they’re unaware of Azaitar’s grappling ability or believe Frevola’s wrestling is enough to win this contest.
Of course, this is MMA, and Frevola could prove me wrong. However, I can’t ignore this price on Azaitar. He’s the superior striker facing a questionable chin of Frevola that’s been tested and put to sleep on multiple occasions. Take Azaitar at +120 before the line moves because some sportsbooks have already adjusted this price.
UFC 281 Main Card and Odds
- Israel Adesanya vs. Alex Pereira [UFC middleweight championship main event bout]
- Carla Esparza vs. Weili Zhang [UFC women’s strawweight co-main event bout]
- Dustin Poirier vs. Michael Chandler [UFC lightweight bout]
- Frankie Edgar vs. Chris Gutierrez [UFC bantamweight bout]
- Dan Hooker vs. Claudio Puelles [UFC lightweight bout]
UFC 281 Preliminary Card and Odds
- Renato Moicano vs. Brad Riddell [UFC lightweight bout]
- Dominick Reyes vs. Ryan Spann [UFC light heavyweight bout]
- Erin Blanchfield vs. Molly McCann [UFC women’s flyweight bout]
- Andre Petroski vs. Wellington Turman [UFC middleweight bout]
- Ottman Azaitar vs. Matt Frevola [UFC lightweight bout]
- Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Silvana Gomez Juarez [UFC women’s strawweight bout]
- Mike Trizano vs. Seung Woo Choi [UFC featherweight bout]
- Julio Arce vs. Montel Jackson [UFC bantamweight bout]
- Carlos Ulberg vs. Nicolae Negumereanu [UFC light heavyweight bout]
*The line and/or odds on picks in this article might have moved since the content was commissioned. For updated line movements, visit BMR’s free betting odds product.