UFC 287 main event pick and an MLB underdog: Best Bets for April 8

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Brazil's Alex Pereira, right, blocks a kick by Nigeria's Israel Adesanya during the third round of a middleweight bout at the UFC 281 mixed martial arts event early Sunday, Nov. 13, 2022, in New York. Pereira stopped Adesanya in the fifth round. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Each day, one of our experts will offer up a best bet (or two or three) that mobile sportsbooks are offering. It might be a traditional spread bet, a player prop or one of the various odds boosts that books offer.

Here are our best bets for Saturday, April 8:

TOP PLAY

The play: UFC 287, Israel Adesanya over Alex Pereira

The odds: -136

The book: FanDuel Sportsbook

Time/TV: Fifth fight of the main card, which starts at 10 p.m. (ESPN+ PPV)

Our take: We haven’t delved much into mixed martial arts on these bets, but then, we’ve got to change our luck somehow, right?

This one follows a basic tenet of sports betting: If a line doesn’t make sense, check it out. What you’ll find here is that even though Adesanya is a slight favorite, he lost a November bout to Pereira, who also beat him twice years ago in kickboxing matches.

Now they meet for the UFC middleweight title in Miami, with Adesanya hoping to avenge that loss, which is just one of two in his UFC career.

Sometimes, certain fighters’ styles just don’t match up well with others, and that could be the case here. But the oddsmakers don’t believe so, giving Adesanya an advantage, especially if the fight goes the distance. A nice hedge could be to take Pereira to win via knockout, particularly via live odds if he’s losing the match midway through; Pereira has earned six of his seven UFC victories by knockout, while Adesanya is more likely to use a decision, as he has in eight of his 23 wins.

ASTROS BOUNCE BACK

The play: MLB money line, Astros over Twins

The odds: +100

The book: FanDuel Sportsbook

Time/TV: 2:10 p.m. (MLB.tv)

Our take: The Astros lost a tough one Friday night, 3-2 in 10 innings in the Twins’ home opener. Actually, just over a week into the season, it’s been a rough go for the defending World Series champions, as they’re 3-5 and having trouble scoring runs, scoring 3 or fewer in four of their five losses.

This one could be tight, too, but we like Houston to bounce back against Twins starter Joe Ryan and behind their own underrated pitcher, Luis Garcia. You don’t get the Astros as underdogs often, so let’s see if we can cash in.

HOW WE’VE FARED

Friday’s best bets

NBA money line parlay: Pelicans/Mavericks/Lakers to win (LOST)

MLB money line: Angels over Blue Jays (LOST)

Friday’s record: 0-2

Total for the week: 4-5, 1 pending

Total for April: 5-8, 1 pending

Total for 2023: 70-78, 1 pending

NOTE: If a line or odds are minus, it considers the juice one must lay to place the bet. Ex: Team A is -160 on the money line, one would have to bet $160 to win $100 (or $16 to win $10). OR Team B is a 5-point favorite at -110, one would have to bet $110 to win $100 (or $11 to win $10.)

Conversely, on positive lines, if Team C is +140 on the money line, $100 would bring in $140 (or $10 to win $14).

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