In what is likely one of the final flyweight fights in UFC history, bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw (16-3) is dropping down a division to challenge 125-pound champ Henry Cejudo (13-2) in the main event of UFC Fight Night 143 at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, on Saturday.
Dillashaw is listed as a -210 favorite (bet $210 to win $100) on the UFC odds at sportsbooks monitored by OddsShark in an effort to become the promotion's fourth simultaneous two-division titleholder before the flyweights' expected dissolution later this year.
Cejudo is a +170 underdog (bet $100 to win $170) at sports betting sites and won the belt from former champ Demetrious Johnson via split decision at UFC 227 last August 4 after his opponent had defended the title a record 11 times. With Johnson no longer part of the organization after being dealt to ONE Championship for Ben Askren in a bizarre sequence of events following that last bout, Cejudo has little competition at 125 pounds.
Enter Dillashaw, who was interested in facing Johnson as well when he was still the champion of the division, although that matchup never materialized. Dillashaw is riding a four-fight winning streak since suffering a loss to former champ Dominick Cruz by split decision two years ago. The biggest issue for Dillashaw here will be the weight cut from 135 pounds, where he has fought for his entire MMA career. The other three simultaneous two-division champs all moved up a division rather than down.
In the co-main event, a pair of heavyweights will duke it out in hopes of moving one step closer to a title shot. Former pro football player Greg Hardy will make his UFC debut as a massive -550 favorite opposite Allen Crowder, who is a sizable +375 underdog.
Hardy's six-year NFL career came to an end after the 2015 season when he was not re-signed by the Dallas Cowboys, who gave him a second chance despite domestic violence allegations that led to a suspension. As a pro fighter, he is 3-0 with three knockouts, all of which have taken place within the first minute of the first round.
Crowder has more pro experience overall with a 9-3 record but lost his promotional debut to Justin Willis via first-round KO at UFC 218. Both he and Hardy made their way to the UFC by way of Dana White's Tuesday Night Contender Series.