UFC 299 Main Card Best Bets: Bankroll Builders in the 305

Benoit Saint Denis of France UFC 295
Benoit Saint Denis of France reacts after defeating Matt Frevola by TKO in a lightweight fight during the UFC 295 event. Sarah Stier/Getty Images/AFP

The UFC makes its highly anticipated return to Miami this Saturday, and bettors have a plethora of elite-level fights to choose from.

With that said, let’s waste no time and dive right into the most noteworthy betting picks for the UFC 299 main card.

Picks Summary

  • Poirier/Saint-Denis Under 2.5 Rounds (-140)
  • Holland/Page Doesn’t Go the Distance (+130)

*All odds from Bet365 (check our Bet365 Review)

Dustin Poirier vs. Benoit Saint-Denis

UFC 299 Lightweight Co-Main Event Bout

Saturday, March 09, 2024 – 06:00 PM ET at Kaseya Center

Dustin Poirier

There is little introduction required for Dustin ‘The Diamond’ Poirier. The former interim champion at 155 pounds has fought the who’s-who of the division elite past and present and is most known for derailing Conor McGregor in back-to-back fights in 2021.

Returning from a head-kick knockout to Justin Gaethje last July has seen Poirier take the appropriate time off to recover. Still, at 35, with many wars on his resume, can the Louisiana representative hold his own versus the new blood of the weight class?

  • Poirier Pro MMA Record: 29-8-0
  • Poirier KOs: 15
  • Poirier Submissions: 7

Benoit Saint-Denis

Benoit Saint-Denis is no stranger to combat; the former soldier with the French military special forces ended his contract with the army in 2019, and his thirst for war continued in the octagon, where he’d soon adapt to life as a professional mixed martial artist.

In just five years, BSD has collected a 13-1-0 professional MMA record, stormed the UFC lightweight division behind a 5-1 record since 2022, and is now on the brink of becoming a title contender after winning five consecutive bouts via KO/TKO or submission.

  • Saint-Denis Pro MMA Record: 13-1-0
  • Saint-Denis KOs: 4
  • Saint-Denis Submissions: 9

Poirier vs. Saint-Denis: Fight Tape Analysis

Poirier is a complete martial artist who has been successful in all facets of the game, but there’s no denying that an offensive boxing approach has brought him to the dance as one of the promotion’s most recognized lightweight competitors.

When looking for red flags in Poirier’s game, durability is a good place to start. In six of his seven UFC losses to date, ‘The Diamond’ was submitted or knocked out. In contrast, he’s also a proven finisher with decades of experience. Of his 21 promotional wins to date, 67% of those bouts finished inside the distance.

BSD is a savage, plain and simple. Sure, holes in his game have previously been exposed, such as his willingness to overexert himself in certain positions and place himself in danger. However, much like his past career, this man wants war, and with the punching power and choking strength he’s displayed thus far, a fight he’s involved with is often expected to finish before the timers up.

UFC 299 Co-Main Event Odds & Prediction

The UFC pricing with OddsTrader’s top sportsbooks has placed Saint-Denis as the betting favorite, and considering his impressive run of late, it’s hard to disagree.

That said, we’re talking about Dustin Poirier here. His counter-striking ability has fended off similar brutes to BSD, such as Michael Chandler, Eddie Alvarez and Gaethje (The First Fight).

The outright winner betting line is too wide, in my opinion, but the under 2½ rounds at -140 feels like a steal. The same outcome (U 2.5 rounds) has landed in five consecutive bouts for Poirier and 90% of Saint-Denis’ UFC contests to date.

We aren’t, however, solely relying on statistics. Both Poirier and BSD possess the skillsets to end this fight anywhere. I expect an early KO/TKO or rear-naked choke for the Frenchman or a situation where Poirier comes on strong in the later rounds and finishes this contest without the requirement of the championship rounds (4 and 5).

UFC Pick: Under 2.5 Rounds (-140) [1.4u returns 1u profit] at Bet365

Kevin Holland vs. Michael ‘Venom’ Page

UFC 299 Welterweight Main Card Bout

Saturday, March 9, 2024 – 06:00 PM ET at the Kaseya Center, Miami, Florida

Kevin Holland

Three defeats suffered in his five most recent UFC bouts don’t look great on paper, but don’t be fooled; Kevin “Trailblazer” Holland isn’t to be messed with.

Outside of his dangerous striking game, fight-ending power, and impressive jiu-jitsu offense, one of Holland’s most notable attributes is his activity. The man has fought on 20 occasions since his UFC debut in 2020, and although his record isn’t perfect, all of his losses were to top-10-ranked opponents.

  • Holland Pro MMA Record: 25-10-0
  • Holland KOs: 13
  • Holland Submissions: 8

Michael Page

It’s been years in the making, but finally, this weekend, Michael ‘Venom’ Page, one of the slickest kickboxers in MMA outside of the UFC, is making his debut on the big stage in Miami, Florida.

Page, 36, is no regular debutant. The former Bellator standout already owns a 21-2-0 pro record and a resume that’s now placed him directly among the elite of the UFC’s welterweight division.

  • Page Pro MMA Record: 21-2-0
  • Page KOs: 12
  • Page Submissions: 4

Holland vs. Page: Fight Tape Analysis

Hype, fight IQ, kickboxing offense and finishing ability on the feet are four factors that will side with Page in his debut. However, this isn’t Bellator and the British kickboxer must understand that his in-octagon flamboyance might get him in trouble when faced with the upper echelon of the UFC.

Holland isn’t going to give MVP a warm welcome; the Fort Worth, Texas native is known for getting right to work and wasting little time. His offensive and defensive wrestling has often been criticized, but finishing the job is no problem, as we’ve seen him collect 9 of his 12 UFC wins via KO/TKO or submission.

UFC 299 Main Card Odds & Prediction

The UFC odds have placed Holland as the betting favorite, albeit with a small price discrepancy between the two combatants.

However, we aren’t interested in the moneyline offerings this week. I expect violence from the onset, and while many handicappers in this space have suggested these styles could create a stalemate and somewhat of a boring fight, I believe the exact opposite.

We have two proven finishers who aren’t going to waste time gauging the reads on one another. Whether it’s a strike-fest at the range or some heavy leather thrown in the pocket, I predict one of these two will be sleeping before the fight concludes.

I like the plus-money and the supporting stats; Page went the distance in just 6 of his 19 Bellator bouts, while Holland hasn’t seen the judges in 12 of his 20 UFC fights to date.

UFC Pick: Fight Doesn’t Go the Distance (+130) [1u returns 1.3u profit] at Bet365

*The line and/or odds referenced in this article might have changed since the content was published. For the latest information on line movements, visit OddsTrader’s free betting odds tool.

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