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BellatorMMA Picks

Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Hiromasa Ougikubo Best Bets

With the final MMA event of 2022, Bellator and RIZIN have put together a historic night in Japan with the five best fighters from each of the promotions facing each other.

One of the most exciting matchups will be the trilogy fight between Kyoji Horiguchi (30-5) and Hiromasa Ougikubo (25-6-2). 

Read along for the Horiguchi vs. Ougikubo best bets and a betting analysis of this flyweight bout in Japan this weekend. 

Kyoji Horiguchi vs. Hiromasa Ougikubo Information

  • Location: Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan
  • Date: December 31, 2022
  • How to Watch: Showtime

Last Fight Records

Horiguchi is coming off a big win over Yuto Hokamura in September via arm-triangle. 

Ougikubo is fresh off a loss to Soo Chul Kim in September at the same RIZIN event as Horiguchi.

Horiguchi vs. Ougikubo Betting Analysis 

This will be the third time these two rivals have met in an MMA fight. Horiguchi has come out on top in both previous matchups, winning the Shooto bantamweight title in 2013 and then again beating Ougikubo at RIZIN 11 in 2018. 

Horiguchi has a ton of experience in the ring and the cage with his 35 professional fights. He has an impressive 30 career wins, with 15 KOs. He also has four submission victories, one of them being over Ougikubo. 

Ougikubo is the older man but has a similar experience in the ring. He hasn’t fought at quite as high of a level as Horiguchi, but his resume is not something to bat an eye at. A fun fact that many people forget is that Ougikubo made it all the way to The Ultimate Fighter final and lost to UFC legend Tim Elliot in season 24. 

Ougikubo has only seven finishes in his career, 6 of them coming from submission. Standing at only 5’3”, he has the physical disadvantages he carries inside the ring. Even as he gets older, it seems that Ougikubo has found his home in the flyweight division at RIZIN. He is 5-1 in his last six and is fighting the best he ever has. 

With the technical side of this Horiguchi vs. Ougikubo best bets breakdown and analysis portion, we need to look at how this fight could play out. 

In their last fight, it was mostly taken place on the ground. Ougikubo is very small and stays very low to the ground in his stance. He will always look to throw combinations only to lead to his takedowns. The path to victory for Ougikubo only seems to dominate on the ground and may catch Horiguchi in a submission. 

Horiguchi will have a more all-around fighting style and must defend takedowns well while also landing punches. 

Odds Breakdown 

Kyoji Horiguchi

Bellator odds have their guy as a -500 favorite over Ougikubo in this trilogy fight. This fight is the only matchup made in this event that didn’t make sense since Horiguchi is 2-0 in previous meetings.

Only a few significant sportsbooks are offering lines for this event so far, so keep an eye out at yours to get the best lines available for this Saturday morning (US time) event. 

Hiromasa Ougikubo

Ougikubo is the big +360 betting underdog for this matchup. He will be prepared for a war and has two fights to look at to make adjustments. This is valuable, but more than it could be. Oddsmakers know that Ougikubo will be very prepared for this matchup on Saturday. 

Horiguchi vs. Ougikubo Betting Pick and Prediction

This is an exciting matchup on this historic MMA card. Horiguchi has bested Ougikubo twice in their remarkable careers. Can Ougikubo make adjustments and come out with a victory? 

Horiguchi will be the physically stronger fighter in the ring on Saturday. He also has more of an edge than his fellow Bellator fighters because he has performed well at RIZIN events in the past and knows how to fight in that style. 

This will be a home-field feeling for Horiguchi, and he will be basking in the energy from the Japanese crowd at this historical event to cap off 2022. This can give him the momentum to go into 2023, looking for another title run. 

Something to look for in this one is the knee of Horiguchi. Ougikubo stays so low to the ground in his stance and is always shooting for takedowns. We have also seen him get finish following a knee recently, so that is a hole in his game. 

Look for a finish from Horiguchi and really putting a stamp on his 3-0 career against Ougikubo. Unfortunately for the RIZIN fans, Horiguchi seems to have Ougikubo’s number and will not lose to him. 

If you need Horiguchi vs. Ougikubo best bets, go with Horiguchi coming out victorious. 

Pick: Horiguchi to win -500.

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