UFC 276 Picks: Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier

  • Date & Location: Saturday, July 2 @T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada
  • Time: Early Prelims (TBA), Prelims (8 p.m. ET), Main Card (10 p.m. ET)
  • How to Watch: Early Prelims (TBA), Prelims (TBA). Main Card (ESPN + pay-per-view)

Following stops in Florida, Arizona and Singapore, the UFC returns to its home base of Las Vegas, Nevada for its next pay-per-view event. That event, UFC 276, is the focal point of the 10th annual “International Fight Week.” In the main event of that fight card, which takes place at T-Mobile Arena on July 2, UFC middleweight champion Israel Adesanya looks to make his seventh defense of his undisputed title when he faces Jared Cannonier.

Adesanya claimed the interim title in April 2019 in a five-round battle opposite Kelvin Gastelum. He won and unified the middleweight crowns in his next outing when he knocked out Robert Whittaker at UFC 243. Adesanya, who is 11-0 in the UFC as a middleweight and just two victories away from tying former champion Anderson Silva for the longest winning streak in UFC history at 185 pounds, last defended his title in February. He scored a decision victory over Whittaker in that contest.

Cannonier made his UFC debut as a heavyweight in 2015. He dropped to light heavyweight in 2016 and then cut to middleweight in 2018. Since making his debut in the 185-pound weight class, Cannonier has gone 5-1. His only loss was a 2020 decision setback to Whittaker. Cannonier is 2-0 since that defeat. He is coming off a February knockout win over Derek Brunson.

Before we look at the matchup between Israel Adesanya and Jared Cannonier on the UFC 276 PPV card, which streams on ESPN+, check out the best UFC betting sites and where you can find the best odds on all the UFC fights.

UFC 276: Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier picks

To Win UFC 276 Main EventBetOnlineBovadaXBetGTBetsMyBookie
Israel Adesanya-360-360-370-370-370
Jared Cannonier+295+270+295+270+295

Israel Adesanya vs. Jared Cannonier breakdown and analysis

Israel Adesanya has been a dominant force since he joined the UFC in 2018. Over that time his fighting style has changed. Where once he took risks and put himself in danger, he has become a more thoughtful fighter. He can still deliver jaw-dropping displays of striking, but those have become the exception rather than the norm.

Adesanya has picked up his share of critics over the years because of his different approach to fighting, but in a sport where the championship holds the key to money and opportunity, the 32-year-old is being smarter about the risks he takes as he goes deeper into his career.

Adesanya has advantages in skill, defense, speed, height and reach in this matchup. What he does not have is the power that Cannonier has. The problem for Cannonier is that he needs to close distance and fight in close in order to catch the champ with that power. If he can get close, the odds are high that Adesanya’s speed will either catch Cannonier coming in or exiting after a striking attempt.

All signs point to Adesanya retaining his title in this matchup.

Pick: Israel Adesanya to defeat Jared Cannonier.

Israel AdesanyaTO DEFEAT JARED CANNONIER
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Betting value with Adesanya

Jared Cannonier is a live underdog thanks to his power. He has 10 career knockout wins and if he can catch Adesanya slipping, he might win the title by knockout. Cannonier is a risky bet, but the odds might be worth taking a flyer on him, especially to win by knockout.

As for Adesanya, the value in betting on the champ is in the method of victory and the number of rounds. Adesanya hasn’t had a knockout win since he stopped Paulo Costa in 2020. I don’t think he will stop Cannonier in this fight, but there is a chance that a counter could end things. It’s a small chance. I think this fight goes the distance and the champ wins via decision.

Prediction: Israel Adesanya to beat Jared Cannonier via decision.

Israel AdesanyaTO DEFEAT JARED CANNONIER
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Our pick

The old adage, “he has a puncher’s chance” is appropriate in this fight. Cannonier, thanks to his power, has a puncher’s chance to pull off the upset win. I think there are too many factors working against him to make that a reality in this contest.

Pick: Israel Adesanya to defeat Jared Cannonier in the main event of UFC 276.

Israel AdesanyaTO DEFEAT JARED CANNONIER
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Trent Reinsmith

Trent covers UFC and MMA for MTS. He currently covers MMA for MMA Junkie and Forbes. He has also written for Vice, Bloody Elbow, Fight! Magazine, UFC 360, and Narratively among others. He has been involved with MMA since he and some friends threw some money together to purchase the pay-per-view of UFC 1, and the rest is history.