We’re heading into another exciting weekend for boxing, with a great lineup featuring top talent and superstars. The headline act of the weekend, at least in terms of intelligence, was the Showtime pay-per-view headliner between UFC champion Anderson Silva and social media superstar Jake Paul (9 p.m. ET, Showtime PPV).
Earlier in the day, one of the greatest fighters in women’s boxing history returned to the ring as Katie Taylor defended her lightweight title against Karen Elizabeth Carabajal (2pm, DAZN). Vasiliy Lomachenko will also be in action when the pound-for-pound heavyweight takes on Jamaine Ortiz in a lightweight fight (6:15 pm, ESPN+).
Saturday’s round of action is a lightweight fight as Joseph “JoJo” Diaz Jr. He faced off against goal kicker William Zepeda (9pm, DAZN) in a fight that puts the loser of the main division in the exciting division.
With such a heavy load, let’s take a look at the three best bets of the weekend with odds from Caesars Sportsbook.
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Vasily Lomachenko vs. Jamaine Ortiz under 10.5 rounds (-105)
I predicted Lomachenko’s knock in. A fight under 10.5 gives you a better price than taking Lomachenko by KO, TKO or DQ (-135). Ortiz is a great fighter, but he hasn’t done anything like Lomachenko and Lomachenko has been dominant since losing to Teofimo Lopez. Richard Commey and Masayoshi Nakatani are both tough fighters and Lomachenko put them both down — stopping Nakatani. Lomachenko should do whatever he wants in this one and do so as he tries to make a statement and secure a shot at Devin Haney and the light heavyweight championship. Take it down, and if you feel like throwing a dart at some height to spice things up, Lomachenko in rounds 4 to 6 is +500 and rounds 7 to 9 is +325.
Anderson Silva by decision (+500) vs. Jake Paul
This is more of a play on principle than anything else. While I think Paul will win this fight, probably by knockout, the +500 line shows the odds at 16.67%. Silva’s knockout sits at +240. Those two lines should be flipped as Silva stops Paul and uses a frustrating, unorthodox style to rack up enough rounds to get his hands through the decision. Sometimes you have to take the value game even if it goes against your expectations to fight.
Joseph Diaz (+145) vs. William Zepeda
Zepeda has an impressive 26-0 record and big, flashy power. Diaz is also fighting one weight class above his prime and that means facing a six-inch disadvantage, as well. So, it’s easy to see why Zepeda is the favorite in the fight. However, Zepeda hasn’t looked as strong against Rene Alvarado in his recent outings and his power hasn’t been much against a top level opponent. Diaz is known for his durability and is very good on his way to the inside, which will prevent Zepeda from getting to him. Zepeda has shown an inability to go the distance against Alvarado and that could be his downfall against someone as prolific in the fight as Diaz.