There’s a lot of excitement surrounding the upcoming UFC 225 card, which will be held on June 9 in Chicago. Each of the five fights on the main card is expected to be tight as the biggest favorite is at -285. Here’s a look at the main card this weekend.
Robert Whittaker vs Yoel Romero – Middleweight Championship Bout
Whittaker (23-4) defeated Romero (12-2) by unanimous decision at UFC 213 last June but then had to pull out of a fight with former champion Luke Rockhold due to injury. Romero knocked out Rockhold at UFC 221 to earn another title shot, even though he missed weight. Whittaker struggled early in the first fight with Romero, whose wrestling was dominant. However, Whittaker fought back hard and won the standup decisively. That contrast in styles is what makes things interesting in the rematch. Whittaker is a heavy -240 favorite while Romero comes in at +190.
Rafael dos Anjos vs Colby Covington – Interim Welterweight Championship Bout
Covington (13-1) and dos Anjos (28-9) will fight for the interim belt while champion Tyron Woodley heals from a torn labrum. Former lightweight champion dos Anjos beat former welterweight champion Robbie Lawler to get here. Covington, who does a great job of being a villain, defeated Demian Maia for his shot. He is a great wrestler who wants to get this to the mat while dos Anjos will want to make this a standup battle. He’s the more balanced of the two but is older and possibly in the twilight of his career. He’s still the small -130 favorite while Covington is posted at EVEN.
Holly Holm vs Megan Anderson – Women’s Featherweight
Holm (11-4) is a former bantamweight champion but has lost four of five since her signature win over Ronda Rousey. Anderson (4-2) has won her last four fights by TKO and is making her debut in the UFC. She’s an exciting young fighter on the rise. Holm always comes to fight but this feels like a stepping stone match for Anderson. She’s still a clear underdog at +190 while Holm is listed at -240.
Andrei Arlovski vs Tai Tuivasa – Heavyweight
Arlovski (27-15, 1 NC), a former UFC heavyweight champion, has won two straight to revive his MMA career after losing five in a row. Tuivasa (7-0) has scored knockout wins in his first two UFC fights and looks like a young riser. The 25-year-old kickboxer will want to keep this standing. So will Arlovski, who is now 39 years old. However, the former champion has shown a weak chin in recent years as three of his last five losses were by TKO. Arlovski is the dog at +225 while Tuivasa is up at -285.
CM Punk vs Mike Jackson – Welterweight
Former WWE star Punk (0-1), born Phil Brooks, was submitted by Mickey Gall in his professional MMA debut in September 2016 and really looked like he didn’t belong. Somehow, he makes it onto the main card at UFC 225. He’ll take on Jackson (0-1), who was also submitted by Gall in his pro debut in February 2016. These could be the two worst fighters in the UFC.
Punk, who is from Chicago, is a name draw, so it is easy to see why he is on this card. He’s still a +185 dog in this bout against Jackson, who is at -235.