UFC 173 Betting Odds: Chris Weidman Opens as Favorite over Lyoto Machida

Sean SmithAnalyst IMarch 2, 2014

Dec 28, 2013; Las Vegas, NV, USA;    Chris Weidman reacts in the cage after defeating Anderson Silva (not pictured) in their UFC middleweight championship bout at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Mandatory Credit: Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Sports
Jayne Kamin-Oncea-USA TODAY Spor

After being an underdog in back-to-back fights with Anderson Silva, Chris Weidman has been labeled the favorite heading into his UFC 173 bout with middleweight title challenger Lyoto Machida.

Undefeated in 11 MMA bouts, Weidman is listed at 5-9 odds on BestFightOdds.com. Despite his success since transitioning to the 185-pound division, Machida is coming back as an underdog at 7-5 odds.

Weidman defeated Silva in July 2013 to become the middleweight champion. In an immediate rematch, "The Spider" suffered a gruesome broken leg after having a leg kick checked. That left Weidman to carry the torch for the 185-pound division that Silva reigned over for years.

Having never tasted defeat inside the Octagon, Weidman has obviously thrived in roles as both a favorite and underdog. Here is a look at Weidman's recent UFC betting odds and results.

Weidman Recent Betting Odds
UFC 168Anderson Silva33-20Win
UFC 162Anderson Silva21-10Win
UFC on Fuel TV 4Mark Munoz5-7Win

Following a controversial loss to Phil Davis in August 2013, Machida opted to drop down to the middleweight class. The change of scenery has quickly paid dividends. With a knockout victory over Mark Munoz and decision win over Gegard Mousasi, "The Dragon" positioned himself as the most intriguing 185-pound contender behind Vitor Belfort.

When Belfort was forced to withdraw from UFC 173 due to the Nevada State Athletic Commission decision to ban therapeutic-use exemptions for testosterone-replacement therapy, Machida stepped in as a replacement opponent for Weidman.

Machida has rarely been an underdog inside the Octagon. The Brazilian defeated Rameau Thierry Sokoudjou as a slight underdog at UFC 79 and came up short as a long shot in his December 2011 bout with Jon Jones.

Machida Recent Betting Odds
UFC Fight Night 36Gegard Mousasi10-21Win
UFC Fight Night 30Mark Munoz5-19Win
UFC 163Phil Davis4-13Loss

Weidman and Machida will meet in the UFC 173 main attraction. The fight will be held on May 24 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.