The UFC is back after a week off with a blockbuster trilogy rubber match in front of fans in Las Vegas.
UFC 264 takes place Saturday at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas. The main card airs on pay-per-view following prelims on ESPN and ESPN+.
(Click here to open a PDF of the staff picks grid in a separate window.)
In the lightweight main event, Dustin Poirier (27-6 MMA, 19-5 UFC) takes on former lightweight and featherweight champion Conor McGregor (22-5 MMA, 10-3 UFC) in a trilogy rubber match. Each fighter has a win over the other by knockout. Poirier is a slight -125 betting favorite at BetMGM, and he’s got the lead in the picks from our 13 editors, writers, radio hosts and videographers at 8-5.
In the co-feature, Gilbert Burns (19-4 MMA, 12-4 UFC) meets Stephen Thompson (16-4-1 MMA, 11-4-1 UFC) at welterweight. Thompson is a -160 favorite, but he has just the smallest possible edge in the picks at 7-6.
Also on the main card, Greg Hardy (7-3 MMA, 4-3 UFC) takes on Tai Tuivasa (12-3 MMA, 5-3 UFC) in a heavyweight bout. Tuivasa is a -145 favorite and has a whopping 11-2 lead in the picks from our staff members.
Irene Aldana (12-6 MMA, 5-4 UFC) meets Yana Kunitskaya (14-5 MMA, 4-2 UFC) in a women’s bantamweight bout. Aldana has a slim -120 edge at the betting window, but she’s got a hefty 11-2 lead in the picks. Oddly enough, our readers are siding with Kunitskaya at a 58 percent clip.
And to open the main card, Sean O’Malley (13-1 MMA, 5-1 UFC) is our only unanimous pick in his bantamweight bout against short-notice replacement opponent Kris Moutinho (9-4 MMA, 0-0 UFC), who is making his UFC debut. O’Malley is the biggest favorite on the entire card at 9-1 and has a 13-0 shutout in the picks from our staff members.
In the MMA Junkie reader consensus picks, Poirier (58 percent), Thompson (73 percent), Tuivasa (67 percent), Kunitskaya (58 percent) and O’Malley (88 percent) are the choices.
Check out all the picks above.