Alexander Gustafsson was admittedly one of the toughest fights of Jon Jones’ storied career, but he is still a heavy betting favorite in their rematch.
News broke on Wednesday that Jones and Gustafsson had inked a deal to fight at UFC 232, where they will battle for the UFC light heavyweight title. Though Daniel Cormier currently holds the belt, if Jones and Gustafsson make it to the Octagon on Dec. 29 in Las Vegas, he will be stripped of the belt and the winner of the fight will be declared the new champion.
Cormier also won the UFC heavyweight title in July and will make his first defense of that belt at UFC 230 on Nov. 3 in New York. The UFC isn’t keen on a fighter holding two belts simultaneously, so they are stripping Cormier and offering the belt in the rematch, bolstering the year-end event.
Jones and Gustafsson last fought more than five years ago. It was a contentious battle that lasted five rounds. Jones won a unanimous decision, but it was widely regarded as the toughest fight of his career, as he readily admits.
Despite that fact, oddsmakers at Bovada have installed Jones as a heavy favorite as the betting lines on the fight opened upon Wednesday’s news.
Jones opened at -280, while Gustafsson sat at +220. That means that you’d have to be $280 on Jones to win $100 because there is strong confidence that he will win the fight. If you bet on Gustafsson, you’d have to lay down $100 to earn winnings of $220 if he defeats Jones.
UFC 232 also features the promotion’s first champion vs. champion fight on the women’s side with featherweight titleholder Cris Cyborg putting her belt on the line against bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes.