Saturday night, Conor McGregor returns to the octagon in UFC 257, for a rematch with Dustin Poirier in the main event of a 12-bout card on Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
McGregor knocked out Poirier in the first round of their 2014 bout. Poirier is currently a consensus +255 underdog for Saturday's rematch just 24 hours before the two are scheduled to meet in the octagon.
It's been almost exactly one year since McGregor's last fight, a 40-second technical-knockout victory over Donald Cerrone in UFC 246. Now comes the McGregor-Poirier rematch.
We talked to DraftKings Sportsbook Director Johnny Avello and PointsBet Sportsbook Director of Communications Patrick Eichner to get the market perspective on the fight.
Avello’s rationale behind setting the fight line was that it’s been a long time since these two fought and they are both completely different fighters now.
DraftKings opened the fight at McGregor -250, and it immediately got bet up to Conor -315.
“They thought the price was a little cheap,” Avello said. “We’ve seen a steady flow of money on Conor, both public and sharp, since opening at -250.”
PointsBet has seen the same action on their end.
"The handle is looking healthy, and as you can imagine, it's all Conor money," Eichner said. "Every bet we've taken is pretty much on McGregor."
Eichner did state that the only Poirier bets they have seen, have been longshot fliers on him to win by knockout or TKO.
Avello thinks they have reached the point of buy-back at the current price.
“Since moving the line to -315, we’re seeing more two-way action,” the oddsmaker stated. “As we get closer to fight night, it will balance out.”
With the line now being so high, Avello thinks the public is going to start betting props instead of Conor straight up.
“They are going to start dabbling in the props,” he explained. “It will be all Conor first round, second round knock-out type bets as we get closer.”
As for big bets, FanDuel reported taking a $188,800 bet on McGregor at -290 odds from a customer in New Jersey. Last Friday, PointsBet took a $100,000 bet on McGregor at -277 odds.
Look for those big bets to keep flowing until the two fighters step into the octagon.
"Still no buy back on Poirier yet," Eichner said. "But we will see a bulk of the action and big bets come in until right before the fight."
Sportsbooks aren’t the only ones capitalizing on the big fight. UFC President Dana White says McGregor-Poirier already has 1.5 million pay-per-view buys, with the final number expected to be much higher.
Regardless of the outcome, we know one thing for sure: Conor is going to entertain and put on a show. Now let’s see if he can back it up in for his bettors.