Amanda Nunes vs. Julianna Pena is the co-main event for UFC 269 betting on December 11. This matchup was originally scheduled for August, but Nunes withdrew after testing positive for COVID-19.
Nunes is the top pound-for-pound female fighter in the world and will be making her sixth defense of the bantamweight title. Oddsmakers expect her to easily retain her belt with UFC betting lines installing her as a whopping -833 favorite while the challenger Pena comes back at +500.
Here are our best free Nunes vs. Pena picks and predictions for Saturday, December 11 from T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.
Nunes vs Pena fight odds
Live odds courtesy of the Covers Line, an average comprised of odds from multiple sportsbooks.
Nunes vs Pena method of victory odds
|Method of Victory||Amanda Nunes||Julianna Pena|
|To win by KO/TKO||-155||+1,600|
|To win by Points||+500||+1,400|
|To win by Submission||+390||+2,000|
Odds courtesy of FanDuel Sportsbook as of November 29, 2021.
Nunes vs Pena picks
Click on the pick to jump to the full analysis.
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Nunes vs Pena betting preview
Amanda "The Lioness" Nunes is the reigning women's bantamweight and featherweight champion and is widely considered the greatest female fighter in MMA history.
Nunes is on a 12-fight winning streak with her most recent victory coming by way of first-round submission against Megan Anderson in March. Her previous defense of the bantamweight title was against Germaine de Randamie in December of 2019 when she won by unanimous decision. She also has first-round finishes over former champs Holly Holm, Cris Cyborg, Ronda Rousey, and Miesha Tate.
The Lioness is a complete fighter with terrific grappling ability and powerful takedowns, along with vicious ground and pound. But it's her powerful and accurate striking that really sets her apart as she lands 4.50 significant strikes per minute while absorbing just 2.45.
Julianna Pena is the No. 5-ranked women's bantamweight contender and is fresh off a submission win over Sara McMann at UFC 257 in January. That victory allowed her to bounce back from a submission loss to de Randamie and improved her record to 6-2 in her last eight fights.
The "Venezuelan Vixen" is a grappling specialist who is at her best on the mat.
Nunes vs Pena tale of the tape
|Amanda Nunes||Julianna Pena|
|135 lbs||Weight||135 lbs|
|69 inches||Reach||69 inches|
|21-4-0 (13 KO)||Record||11-4-0 (3 KO)|
Nunes vs Pena UFC prediction and betting picks
Moneyline Nunes (-833)
Let's not beat around the bush, Pena is only the fifth-highest ranked bantamweight contender and is No. 15 in the UFC women's pound-for-pound rankings. She's only getting a title shot against Nunes because the GOAT has cleaned out the division.
Nunes is better in every category across the board and as long she keeps her mental edge she will continue her winning streak. That said, at -833 there's no reason to this line (unless you add it on to a parlay) so let's grab some betting value with our next two picks.
Nunes by KO/TKO (-155)
Pena has holes in her striking and Nunes will piece her up with her accuracy, speed, and power. For that reason, backing Nunes to win by KO/TKO seems like the most likely outcome.
Pena's biggest strength is her grappling ability but her defensive wrestling is subpar and her last two losses came by way of submission.
She can be overpowered by stronger fighters on the mat and Nunes has terrific strength along with vicious ground and pound which could lead to a knockout victory for her even if this fight ends up on the ground.
Nunes by finish in Round 1 (+190)
Nunes' winning streak stretches all the way back to 2015 and reveals an interesting trend. While seven of those 12 wins ended by first-round finish, the other five went at least a full three rounds. Generally, if a fighter is good enough to get through the first round they will be able to make it through the next two as well.
The question is whether or not Pena is good enough to survive that opening onslaught. Three of those decision wins for Nunes came against Valentina Shevchenko (twice) and de Randamie, both of whom finished Pena and proved they were on a higher level than the Venezuelan fighter. Pena also tends to start slowly in her fights, which could lead to a quick finish at Nunes' powerful hands.