Today the weekend kicks off with a loaded all-day betting menu filled with 100 plus college basketball games, 5 NBA games, 10 NHL games and, last but not least, UFC 258: Usman vs Burns. For extensive Saturday betting analysis, be sure to join Michael Lombardi, Patrick Meagher, Mike Palm, Thomas Gable and myself this morning from 10 a.m.-noon on The Lombardi Line. We'll be dissecting all the big matchups, the top lines moves and breaking down late sharp action across all the major sports.
In the meantime, let's discuss some UFC line movement and NHL system matches for today...
Kamaru Usman vs Gilbert Burns
This welterweight title bout is the main event of the evening. Usman (17-1) has several physical advantages over Burns (19-3). Usman is one year younger (33 vs 34), taller (6-0 vs 5-8) and has a much longer reach (76 inches vs 71). This line opened with Usman as a -250 favorite and we've seen the line balloon up to -260 or -270 depending on the shop. This signals some lopsided support laying the chalk price with Usman. We might be looking at a longer bout as well. The total of 4.5 rounds have been juiced to the over, moving from -125 to -145. Of Usman's 17 wins, 53% of them have come by decision.
Maycee Barber vs Alexa Grasso
This women's flyweight showdown is the co-main event of the night. Barber (8-1) enters as a young up and coming phenom and is aptly nicknamed "The Future." Her height, weight and reach are all nearly identical to Grasso (12-3). But the one big advantage is her youth. Barber is just 22 while Grasso is 27. Barber has received one of the biggest line moves of any fighter, moving from a short + 115 underdog to even money (+ 100). The total of 2.5 rounds is heavily juiced to the over, but the juice has actually fallen from -325 to -255. This means some under money has come in (+ 250 to + 205). Of Barber's 8 wins, 63% have come via knockout/TKO and 25% via submission. Of Grasso's 12 wins, 67% have come via decision.
More UFC 258 Moves
Gabriel Green -110 to -130 vs Philip Rowe
Belal Muhammad -330 to -500 vs Dhiego Lima
Ian Heinisch-Kevin Gastelum Over 2.5 (-205 to -250)
Maki Pitolo-Julian Marquez Over 1.5 (-160 to -180)
3 p.m. ET: Ottawa Senators (2-12-1) at Winnipeg Jets (8-4-1)
These teams played two nights ago and the Jets won 5-1, easily cashing as -225 home favorites. In this afternoon's rematch, the line opened with Winnipeg listed as a -200 home favorite and we've seen respected money drive the Jets up to -220 or higher depending on the book. Winnipeg has value as a home favorite -150 or more (37-8, 82% this season) and a big favorite -200 or more (19-4, 83%). Also, favorites with a line move of 10-cents or more are 34-11 (76%). The Senators are 1-7 on the road while the Jets are 6-2-1 at home. Winnipeg is + 10 in goal differential and Ottawa is an NHL-worst -31. The total is 6.5 with the under juiced to -120, signaling some under liability.
4 p.m. ET: Vegas Golden Knights (8-2-1) at San Jose Sharks (5-6-1)
Both of these West Division foes are looking to rebound from losses. The Knights just fell 1-0 to the Ducks while the Sharks just got crushed by the Kings 6-2. This line opened with Vegas listed as a -170 road favorite and we've seen lopsided support push the Knights up to -180. Vegas has bounce-back value as a favorite off a loss (51-17, 75% this season) and a favorite with a line move of 10-cents or more (34-11, 76%). The Knights are 5-1 on the road this season. This will be the first home game of the season for the Sharks. Vegas is + 10 in goal differential while San Jose is -12.
7 p.m. ET: Montreal Canadiens (8-4-2) at Toronto Maple Leafs (11-2-1)
The Leafs are the best team in the NHL and just beat the Canadiens 4-2 in Montreal three nights ago. This line opened with Toronto listed as a short -115 home favorite and sharp money has steamed the Leafs up to -130. Toronto has value as a home favorite (77-34, 69%) and a favorite with a line move of 10-cents or more (34-11, 76%). Also, this is a big rest advantage for Toronto. The Leafs last played on Wednesday while the Habs played on Thursday and now have to travel. Teams like Toronto in this "rest vs tired" spot are 12-4 (75%) this season.