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UFC 224 odds: Nunes, Souza among betting favorites for MMA card in Rio de Janeiro

Amanda Nunes has won each of her last six fights to bring her professional record since joining the UFC to 8-1. The defending UFC Women’s Bantamweight Champion will put her title on the line Saturday night against Raquel Pennington at UFC 224.

Nunes is going off as a -900 betting favorite to defend her title at sportsbooks monitored by

The champ is finally getting the respect she deserves on the betting board after heading into each of her last five fights as the underdog. She won all five of those fights, upsetting Miesha Tate for the title at UFC 200 and successfully defending that title against Ronda Rousey and Valentina Shevchenko.

The Brazil native will also have the home crowd behind her in Rio de Janeiro, making an already fierce competitor even more dangerous. Raquel Pennington will try to pull off the upset as a +550 underdog, entering this fight on a four-fight winning streak including a win over Tate in her last outing at UFC 205.

In what is expected to be a much more competitive bout, Ronaldo Souza will try to pick up the win in his home country as a -150 favorite in his middleweight bout against Kelvin Gastelum (+120). Souza has won each of his last nine fights in Brazil with his last loss in his home country coming back in his professional debut in 2003. The 38-year-old is 11-2 over his last 13 fights.

Gastelum is 14-3 as a professional and has won four of his last five fights if you include a victory over Vitor Belfort that was officially overturned due to a positive drug test for marijuana. Both of these fighters fight to win on the mat instead of leaving things up to the scorecards, setting the stage for an exciting co-main event.

Rounding out the main card are Mackenzie Dern (-250) vs. Amanda Cooper (+195), John Lineker (-250) vs. Brian Kelleher (+195) and Lyoto Machida (-260) vs. Vitor Belfort (+200). Dern is undefeated through her first six bouts as a professional and picked up a win over Ashley Yoder in her UFC debut at UFC 222.

UFC 224 Betting Lines

Amanda Nunes (-900) vs. Raquel Pennington (+550)

Ronaldo Souza (-150) vs. Kelvin Gastelum (+120)

Mackenzie Dern (-250) vs. Amanda Cooper (+195)

John Lineker (-250) vs. Brian Kelleher (+195)

Lyoto Machida (-260) vs. Vitor Belfort (+200)

For more odds information, betting picks, and a breakdown of this week’s top sports betting news check out the OddsShark podcast with Jon Campbell and Andrew Avery. Subscribe on iTunes or listen to it at

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