UFC 253 Odds/Prediction: Kai Kara-France (-230) vs. Brandon Royval (+190)
Kai Kara-France is one of four New Zealanders looking to make a statement on Fight Island, but the slanted odds in his favor threaten to disguise the threat posed by opponent Brandon Royval (11-4).
“Raw Dawg” will feature on the main card of a UFC event in only his second fight with the promotion, his reward after sealing a “Fight of the Night” submission win over Tim Elliott in May.
Kara-France (21-8) has emerged as victor in nine of his past 10 fights—the last five of those coming in the UFC—but he was outclassed by top-ranked flyweight Brandon Moreno last December. Three of those nine wins have come via finish, though he’s yet to put an opponent away since joining the UFC.
He’s a -230 front-runner with William Hill to seal back-to-back wins, but New Jersey customers may be smarter to jump on Royval’s +190 odds, which look overinflated after beating former title contender Elliott.
The 28-year-old has half the fight experience of Kara-France and is more raw on paper, though his finishing potential looks higher considering his penchant for submission wins.
Royval has seven submissions from 11 career victories and is +500 with William Hill to tap Kara-France, an appealing price for a new prospect to watch in the flyweight ranks.
Prediction: Royval via submission