Saturday is a great night of mixed martial arts for MMA bettors. There’s a solid UFC Fight Night card from North Carolina and then Bellator 238 headlined by a featherweight title fight between Julie Budd and Cris Cyborg. Here’s a look at that and the co-main event with Mybookie MMA odds.
Bellator 238 Odds, Budd vs Cyborg Betting Preview & Predictions
- When: Saturday, 10 PM ET
- Where: The Forum, Los Angeles
- Live Stream: DAZN
Julia Budd (13-2) vs. Cris Cyborg (21-2)
- Bellator 238 Odds: Budd +315 / Cyborg -410
Cyborg first rose to prominence when she won the Strikeforce title on August 15, 2009, by defeating Gina Carano via first-round TKO.
Now, Cyborg looks to become the only female fighter to hold four different major world titles in the same division in her Bellator debut. The 34-year-old Cyborg had her incredible 13-year, 21-fight unbeaten streak come to a halt at the hands of women’s pound-for-pound queen Amanda Nunes via a first-round KO in December 2018 in a stunning upset. Nunes successfully moved up in weight and knocked out dominant Cyborg just 51 seconds into the opening round. That fight also was at the Forum in Los Angeles.
Justino had made a career out of bullying opponents against the fence and knocking them out in devastating fashion. Going into the Nunes fight, Justino had won 20 consecutive fights, 17 of them by knockout. She has collected 10 first-round finishes in her illustrious career. However, Nunes clipped Justino early with a right hand after knocking her off balance with a strong leg kick. As Justino looked to aggressively move forward, Nunes dropped her to a knee with a right hand.
Following just her second pro loss, Cyborg bounced back with a unanimous decision win over Felicia Spencer last July, before signing a multi-fight deal with Bellator MMA in September. Bellator president Scott Coker called it “the biggest contract in women’s MMA history.”
What about Budd?Budd, from Canada, practiced Muay Thai for many years and later became the only woman to defeat American Gina Carano in Muay Thai competition. Budd’s second and final loss in the ring came by Germaine de Randamie, after which Budd made the move to MMA.
She started with Strikeforce and signed with Bellator in August 2014. Budd faced Marloes Coenen for Bellator’s inaugural women’s featherweight championship at Bellator 174 on March 3, 2017. She stopped Coenen in the fourth round via strikes after securing the full mount position.
Budd has made three successful title defenses, last in July 2019 vs. Olga Rubin and winning by first-round TKO. Budd’s only losses, which go back to 2011, have come against two of the most famous female MMA fighters of all time – Ronda Rousey and Nunes. In April 2019, Budd signed a new long-term deal with Bellator.
“I think she’s a great fighter,” Cyborg said of Budd recently. “She’s the champion at 145 pounds and she’s been a champion a long time. Undefeated eight years. She’s going to be a great challenge for me … I always like to challenge myself if I have the opportunity. I think it’s a big thing to sign with Bellator.”
Cyborg says after she wins that she plans to partake in a Bellator grand prix in Japan. On the men’s side, Bellator’s heavyweight, welterweight, and featherweight classes have participated in grand prix in recent years (see below). The company has yet to hold a grand prix in any of the women’s divisions.
Adam Borics (14-0) vs. Darrion Caldwell (14-3)
- Bellator 238 Odds: Borics -120 / Caldwell +100
It’s the second fight of the quarterfinal round, and the winner will move on to face A.J. McKee next.
Caldwell advanced with a unanimous decision win over Henry Corrales at Bellator 228 in September 2019. Caldwell also formerly competed in the bantamweight division where he is the former Bellator Bantamweight World Champion. A professional since 2012, he has also competed for Legacy FC. He was the 2009 NCAA national wrestling champion at 149 pounds. With his wrestling background at NC State, not to mention attending the Olympic trials, Caldwell would seem to have an advantage in the grand prix.
“Yeah, it’s definitely a different mental edge,” he agreed. “I’ve seen that design over and over and over. I see my name on the championship line over and over and over. This time will be no different.”
In the opening round of the grand prix, Borics took out Pat Curran in the second round at last September’s Bellator 226, advancing to the quarterfinals. “The Kid” has finished all five of his Bellator bouts to date.
The winner of the Bellator Featherweight Grand Prix will not only walk out with the 145-pound title but a $1 million grand prize.
Expert Bellator 238 Betting PicksCyborg by KO/TKO and Caldwell by decision.
Rest of the Bellator 238 Card
- Sergio Pettis vs. Alfred Khashakyan
- Raymond Daniels vs. Jason King
- Ava Knight vs. Emilee King
- Henry Corrales vs. Juan Archuleta
- Aaron Pico vs. Daniel Carey
- Jay Jay Wilson vs. Mario Navarro
- Anthony Taylor vs. Chris Avila
- David Pacheco vs. Miguel Jacob
- Brandon Bender vs. Joshua Jones
- Ricardo Seixas vs. Dominic Clark
- Tony Bartovich vs. Jarrett Connor
- AJ Agazarm vs. Adel Altamimi
- Curtis Millender vs. Moses Murrietta