Alexandre Pantoja opens as a sizeable favorite over Steve Erceg ahead of UFC 301 title fight

By Cole Shelton - March 19, 2024

Alexandre Pantoja has opened as a sizeable betting favorite ahead of his UFC 301 title fight against Steve Erceg.

Alexandre Pantoja and Steve Erceg

Pantoja is set to defend his flyweight title for the second time in Brazil on May 4 against the 10th-ranked Erceg. The fight came as a bit of a surprise given Erceg is only 3-0 in the UFC, but due to Pantoja having wins over several top ranked fighters, it made sense for the Aussie to get the title shot.

But, with Erceg only being 3-0 in the UFC, oddsmakers are clearly expecting Pantoja to defend his belt as the champ has opened as a sizeable betting favorite.

UFC 301 Opening Odds:

Alexandre Pantoja -260
Steve Erceg +210

At -260, oddsmakers are implying Pantoja has a 72.2% chance of winning the fight. Also, if you like Pantoja to get the win, you would need to bet $260 to win $100. But, if you like Erceg to win, a $100 bet would net you $210 in profit if he can pull off the upset.

Alexandre Pantoja (27-5) is coming off a decision win over Brandon Royval at UFC 296 back in December to defend his title for the first time. Before that, he scored a decision win over Brandon Moreno to win the flyweight title. Pantoja is currently 11-3 in the UFC and on a five-fight winning streak. In his career, Pantoja has beaten Moreno twice – three times including TUF – Royval, twice, and also has wins over Manel Kape and Matt Schnell.

Steve Erceg (12-1) is a perfect 3-0 in the UFC and on an 11-fight winning streak. Erceg earned the title shot with a KO win over Matt Schnell at UFC Vegas 88 earlier this month. The Aussie also beat Alessandro Costa by decision and David Dvorak by decision.

With Pantoja vs. Erceg set, UFC 301 is as follows:

  • Alexandre Pantoja vs. Steve Erceg
  • Jose Aldo vs. Jonathan Martinez
  • Makhmud Muradov vs. Michel Pereira
  • Caio Borralho vs. Paul Craig
  • Vitor Petrino vs. Anthony Smith
  • Drakkar Klose vs. Joaquim Silva
  • Karolina Kowalkiewicz vs. Iasmin Lucindo
  • Joanderson Brito vs. Jack Shore
  • William Gomis vs. Jean Silva
  • Elves Brener vs. Myktybek Orolbai
  • Dione Barbosa vs. Ernesta Kareckaite
  • Kevin Borjas vs. Alessandro Costa

This article appeared first on BJPENN.COM


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