UFC Auckland: Felder vs Hooker Odds, Picks & Betting Preview

UFC Auckland
In the main event of UFC Auckland, Paul Felder takes on Dan Hooker in a very intriguing scrap.
  • Paul Felder and Dan Hooker set to headline their first UFC show
  • Does the winner break into the top-five at lightweight?
  • See the betting preview for the main and co-main event and odds for the main card below

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is in New Zealand this Saturday, February 22 for UFC Auckland where an exciting lightweight bout headlines the card.

In the main event, perennial contender Paul Felder takes on Auckland’s own Dan Hooker. The co-main event pairs Jimmy Crute against Michal Oleksiejczuk in a battle between two light heavyweight prospects.

The main card airs live at 7 p.m. EST. The table below shows odds for the entire main card.

UFC Auckland Odds

Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Paul Felder +125 +118
Dan Hooker -155 -138
Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Jimmy Crute +115 +120
Michal Oleksiejczuk -145 -140
Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Karolina Kowalkiewicz +175 +210
Yan Xiaonan -225 -250
Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Ben Sosoli +125 +125
Marcos Rogerio de Lima -155 -145
Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Brad Riddell -105 +107
Magomed Mustafaev -125 -127
Fighter Odds at Bovada Odds at BetOnline
Kevin Aguilar -120 -117
Zubaira Tukhugov -110 -103

*All odds taken Feb. 17

Does the Winner get a Top-Five Opponent Next?

Paul Felder (17-4) is coming off a very close split-decision win over Edson Barboza to extend his winning streak to two. Before that, he beat James Vick by unanimous decision, where his last loss was a split-decision outcome to Mike Perry at UFC 226 at welterweight in a fight Felder broke his forearm in. The American has notable wins over Charles Oliveira, Daron Cruickshank, and Stevie Ray.

Dan Hooker (19-8) is also riding a two-fight winning streak where he beat Al Iaquinta by decision at UFC 243 and before that, knocked out James Vick. His last loss was a brutal TKO loss to Edson Barboza but has looked better in every fight since. The New Zealand native is a former featherweight who has notable wins over Gilbert Burns, Jim Miller, Ross Pearson, and Marc Diakiese.

This fight is a very interesting clash of styles where both are primarily strikers and kickboxers but Felder is someone to grind you out to a decision, while Hooker has legitimate knockout power.

Neither fighter has gone five-rounds before so it will be interesting to see how their cardio fares into the fourth and fifth round. In the fight, Hooker will need to put Felder out early as the American to me, has the better cardio and is the more technical fighter where he can piece up the Kiwi in the fight.

But, in this fight, I suspect Felder will look to close the distance and get caught by a hard punch in the third round where Hooker will capitalize and earn a TKO win.

Pick: Dan Hooker (-138)

Felder vs Hooker Matchup Table

Felder
VS
Hooker

34 Age 30
5’11” Height 6’0″
70.5″ Reach 75″
5 UFC finishes 8

Who’s the Better Prospect?

Jimmy Crute (10-1) is coming off a first-round submission loss to Misha Cirkunov at UFC Vancouver. In the fight, the 23-year-old was close to finishing it with a ground and pound TKO but admitted he got too emotional and it cost him the fight. In his UFC tenure, he TKO’d Sam Alvey and submitted Paul Craig. He earned his  UFC contract by a TKO win on the Contender Series.

Michal Oleksiejczuk (14-3 one no-contest) was looking to break into the top-15 last time out but was submitted by Ovince Saint Preux. Before that, he had brutal knockouts over Gadzhimurad Antigulov and a TKO win over Gian Villante. In his UFC debut, he beat Khalil Rountree by unanimous decision but it was overturned to a no-contest after he tested positive for Clomifene.

In this fight, it will come down to can Crute put Oleksiejczuk out with punches to the chin or can the Pole put the Aussie out with his patented liver kick.

Ultimately, I think Crute is the more well-rounded fighter and even if he gets hurt he can take the fight to the mat and look for a submission win. He also has the better cardio and he’ll be able to grind Oleksiejczuk on the feet and the ground and earn a stoppage win in the second round.

Pick: Jimmy Crute (+120)

Other UFC Auckland Picks:

  • Yan Xiaonan (-225): Xiaonan is the better striker and will be able to piece up Kowalkiewicz and earn a decision win
  • Ben Sosoli (+125): Sosoli is in a unique position of coming off two no-contest in a row but against de Lima, I think Sosoli will be able to outland de Lima and earn a decision win.
  • Brad Riddell (+107): Riddell is the better striker and always moves forward which will frustrate Mustafaev and he’ll earn a decision win or late TKO win.
  • Kevin Aguilar (-120): Aguilar has very good cardio and will be able to outpace Tukhugov and piece him up on the feet for a decision win.
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