PFL 9 takes place Saturday, October 13 at Long Beach Arena in Long Beach, California. The offshore sportsbooks recently released the opening odds for the card, and here they are.

PFL 9 Opening Odds

Vinny Magalhaes -475
Rakim Cleveland +325

Natan Schulte -175
Johnny Case +135

Chris Wade -165
Robert Watley +125

Rashid Magomedov -210
Will Brooks +160

Maxim Grishin -490
Smealinho Rama +330

Islam Mamedov -750
Thiago Tavares +450

Emiliano Sordi +205
Bazigit Ataev -255

Sean O’Connell +235
Dan Spohn -300

And here are my initial reactions to the opening odds:

– Lots of big favorites on the card including Magalhaes over Cleveland. I don’t see much of a path to victory for Cleveland in this one. Magalhaes has looked great so far in PFL with two straight first-round finishes to get the first seed in the heavyweight bracket. Cleveland, meanwhile, went just 1-1 an advanced as the eigthh seed. Magalhaes should have a huge advantage if this fight goes to the ground, which I think it will, and I think he gets a finish in this one by submission.

– Another big number takes place in the Grishin vs. Rama heavyweight fight and it’s hard to not like Grishin in this one. Grishin has won both of his PFL fights via stoppage and has won 16 of his last 17 fights overall, with many of these wins coming by stoppage. Rama is just 1-2 overall in PFL and only advancaed to the next round of this tournament due to a technicality. I think Grishin is better everywhere the fight goes and he should be able to get another finish in this one.

– One fighter who has been a pleasant surprise in PFL is Schulte, who takes on UFC vet Case in what should be a good lightweight bout. Schulte is 2-0 in PFL with upset wins over Jason High and Chris Wade while Case has gone 2-0 since being cut by the UFC, albeit over lesser competition. Case is a very solid fighter and while it wouldn’t surprise me if he pulled off the win, I have to go with the hot hadn and take Schulte in this one to get another victory by decision. Having said that, this fight worries me a lot because of the two rounds and the rule where the first-round winner advances. I would probably just pass because of that weird rule.

– Same thing goes for the Wade vs. Watley fight. I could easily see this fight going to a draw with both men winning one round a piece. It’s going to be a close fight either way, though I do like the upside of Watley in this one.

– Perhaps the most interesting bout on this card is the Magomedov vs. Brooks fight. I was expecting a closer line for this one so I’m a bit surprised Magomedov is such a big favorite, though that tells you all you need to know about where Brooks is these days. In the last lightweight bout on the card, it’s hard not to like Mamedov over Tavares. You have to fade Tavares at this point of his career and Mamedov is a solid fighter who should be able to take this bout.


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