Defending UFC women's bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes will meet Irene Aldana in the main event of UFC 289 on Saturday from Rogers Arena in Vancouver. The UFC is making its return to Canada after a nearly four-year absence. Atop the UFC 289 fight card, Nunes will defend the title she won at UFC 277 in July of last year with a unanimous decision over Julianna Pena. The latter had taken the crown from Nunes in December 2021 with a second-round submission.
Nunes is a -320 favorite (risk $320 to win $100), while Aldana comes back at +250 in the latest UFC 289: Nunes vs. Aldana odds from Caesars Sportsbook. The co-main event features a lightweight matchup between Charles Oliveira (+126) and Beneil Dariush (-150). Before finalizing any UFC 289 picks, make sure you check out the MMA predictions and betting advice from SportsLine expert Kyle Marley.
Marley won the first-ever "ToutMaster" UFC betting contest sponsored by MMAOddsBreaker and appears regularly on multiple MMA betting and daily Fantasy shows. He watches every single fight for every professional MMA card and does extensive research before each event.
Over the past three-plus years, $100 bettors who have followed Marley's picks are up nearly $11,000. The accomplished MMA analyst has provided consistent winners for SportsLine members for the past four years. His accomplishments include hitting five consecutive main-event underdog winners in 2020 following the UFC's brief pause in action because of the pandemic. Anyone who has followed him is way up.
Now, with UFC 289: Nunes vs. Aldana in sight, Marley has studied the card from top to bottom and revealed his top picks and best bets. You can only see Marley's UFC 289 picks and analysis at SportsLine.
UFC 289: Nunes vs. Aldana preview
Nunes, who is from Brazil, had a rough start to her career in 2008. In a featherweight bout, Nunes got in trouble early and lost by submission in just 35 seconds to Ana Maria at Prime: MMA Championship 2. She learned quickly from her mistakes and followed with six consecutive wins. She has continually improved and earned her first championship in July 2016. That's when she defeated Miesha Tate by submission in 3:16 of the first round at UFC 200.
She has since won the UFC bantamweight title, defending it five times, and the featherweight crown, defending it twice. Nunes made history by becoming the first woman to hold two titles simultaneously in UFC. The 35-year-old holds the No. 1 spot in the UFC women's pound-for-pound rankings. Nunes has 22 victories in her career with just five losses. Among her wins, 13 have come via knockout.
Aldana, 35, returns to action after nine months. In her last bout, she earned Performance of the Night accolades after knocking out Macy Chiasson at UFC 279 last September. In that match, Aldana's upkick to the body sent Chiasson to the mat at 2:21 of the third round. In her previous match, she was also victorious, defeating Yana Kunitskaya by knockout at UFC 264 in July 2021. Aldana made a great first impression after turning pro in 2012. In her very first match at GEX-Old Jack's Fight Night, she floored Sandra del Rincon in just 15 seconds of the first round.
Aldana, who is from Mexico, is the fifth-rated fighter in the UFC women's bantamweight division. She has won seven of her past nine matches, and has a record of 14-6. She has eight wins by knockout, while registering three wins by decision and three by submission. You can see who Marley is backing here. You can see all of Marley's picks here.
Top UFC 289 expert picks
One of Marley's top UFC 289 picks: He is backing Adam Fugitt (+165) to pull off the upset of Mike Malott (-195) in a battle of welterweight contenders.
Fugitt, 34, from the United States, has a 9-3 MMA record since turning pro in 2016, including five wins by knockout, three by submission and one by decision. He is coming off a knockout win at 4:36 of the first round over Yusaku Kinoshita at UFC Fight Night on February 4. He has won five of his last six bouts, splitting a pair of matches in 2022. He earned a first-round knockout in 43 seconds over Solomon Renfro at LFA 125: Amorim vs. Young before being knocked out at 1:09 of the third round at UFC Pena vs. Nunes 2.
Malott, 31, from Canada, is 9-1-1 in his career, which began in 2011. He has won his last five matches, including a first-round submission victory over Yohan Lainesse at UFC Fight Night: Muniz vs. Allen. He used an arm-triangle choke to earn the win at 4:15. The effort earned him the Performance of the Night.
"All 9 of Malott's wins are first-round finishes. I do think he is the better fighter in round 1 here, but I don't know that he is the better fighter if it makes it out of that round, so I will not be laying this money line price on him. Fugitt can hang on the feet but, if he lands takedowns after that first round, it could be a clear two rounds for him. I will go ahead and sign with the underdog because of the line and I'll take him by decision or a late finish," Marley told SportsLine. See who else to pick here.
How to make UFC 289 predictions
Marley has strong picks for Nunes vs. Aldana and every other bout on the UFC 289 card. He's also backing a fighter with a strong striking edge to emerge with a dominant victory. Marley's UFC 289 expert picks and analysis are only available at SportsLine.
Who wins UFC 289: Nunes vs. Aldana, and how exactly does each fight end? Visit SportsLine now to get detailed picks on every fight at UFC 289, all from the incomparable expert who's up nearly $11,000 on MMA in the past three-plus years, and find out.
UFC 289 odds, fight card
See full UFC 289 picks, predictions, best bets here.
Maria Oliveira (-105) vs. Diana Belbita (-115)
David Dvorak (-270) vs. Steve Erceg (+220)
Blake Bilder (-240) vs. Kyle Nelson (+196)
Quileng Aori (-120) vs. Aiemann Zahabi (+100)
Miranda Maverick (-320) vs. Jasmine Jasudavicius (+250)
Nassourdine Imavov (-155) vs. Chris Curtis (+130)
Marc-Andre Barriault (-135) vs. Eryk Anders (+115)
Dan Ige (-260) vs. Nate Landwehr (+210)
Mike Malott (-195) vs. Adam Fugitt (+165)
Charles Oliveira (+126) vs. Benell Dariush (-150)
Amanda Nunes (-320) vs. Irene Aldana (+250)