UFC 266 Betting Preview: Diaz vs. Lawler

UFC 266 Betting Preview: Diaz vs. Lawler

MW – Nick Diaz (26-10-0, 1 NC) vs. #15 MW – Robbie Lawler (28-15-0, 1 NC) 

Date: Saturday, September 25th

Time: 10:00 PM ET

Venue: Las Vegas, T-Mobile Arena

Broadcast Coverage: ESPN+

Diaz vs. Lawler Moneyline and Odds

Odds to Win: Diaz +126 / Lawler -154

How Will Fight End: KO/TKO +120, Submission +800, Points -125

Will the fight go the distance? Yes (-122) No (+112)

Odds courtesy of Fanduel Sportsbook. Sign up for FanDuel Sportsbook today and get your first bet risk-free for up to $1,000!

Diaz vs. Lawler News, Analysis, and Picks

Nick Diaz is making his return to the Octagon after six years. His last fight was a no-contest vs. Anderson Silva (initially ruled a unanimous decision win for Silva). Before the no-contest, Diaz was on a two-fight losing streak after facing off with Georges St-Pierre and Carlos Condit. On the other hand, Robbie Lawler is currently on a four-fight losing streak and has dropped five of his past six. 

So, you might be wondering why everyone is so excited about this contest. Diaz and Lawler are both exciting fighters to watch. Lawler is explosive in his striking and when he lets loose, can overwhelm his opponents and knock them out. Diaz doesn’t have the knockout power that Lawler exhibits but puts out a higher volume of punches. He’s credited with thirteen knockout wins, but most of those are by TKO, where Diaz overwhelmed his opponents with strikes. Diaz has the better jab of the two, knocking Lawler out with it the last time they fought, and absorbs slightly less punishment. However, Diaz tends to experience cuts above his eyes from years of scar tissue build-up. On the ground, there is no question that Diaz has the advantage. The only time Lawler finished a fight with a submission was in 2005, and he has lost by submission five times in his career. Meanwhile, Diaz has never lost via submission and has eight submission victories to his name.

All of this comes with the caveat that Diaz hasn’t fought in six years. If this fight were to happen when he was still active, then Diaz would probably come out with a win, but he’s been off so long that ring rust is sure to play a part in this fight. In addition to the ring rust, after watching recent interviews with Diaz, it’s not clear where his head is at these days. He seems uninterested, unfocused, and it’s questionable that a prizefight is something he should be partaking in right now.

We expect Lawler to pick up the win but that he won’t finish a very durable Diaz. There is the off-chance that Diaz latches onto a submission, and the odds for that outcome look pretty juicy.

The Bets: Lawler win (-154), Will the fight go the distance? Yes (-122), Lawler by Points (+260), Diaz by Submission (+900)