Curtis Blaydes vs. Jailton Almeida prediction & odds | UFC 299 1

The two most dominant grapplers in the heavyweight division are set to clash this Saturday at UFC 299.

Brazil’s Jailton Almeida, ranked #7, is a black belt and Jiu-Jitsu standout. He began his UFC journey in 2022 as a Light Heavyweight, eventually making the move north to 265 lbs and dominating the entire way. He has gone a total of 6-0 in the UFC plus a win on the Contender Series and is most recently coming off of a UD over Derrick Lewis.

He will take on the #5 ranked Curtis Blaydes. The NJCAA wrestling champion brought his skills to the UFC in 2016. He quickly made clear why he is nicknamed “Razor” Blaydes, as his devastating ground and pound have left many opponents battered and bloody.

His excellent takedowns and top control have been recently enhanced by an ever-evolving stand up game, rounding out the Heavyweight contender. Although coming off of a loss to Sergei Pavlovich in his last fight, prior to this he was on a three-fight win streak over Tom Aspinall via injury, Chris Daukaus via TKO and Jairzhinho Rozenstruik by UD. The winner of this matchup could quickly find themself fighting for a belt in the near future.

Check out all of our UFC 299 predictions below:

Betting Odds

Oddsmakers have the two men at a dead even at -115. This means regardless who you side with it will cost $115 to win $100 profit on your pick.

  • Curtis Blaydes: -115 (BetUS)
  • Jailton Almeida: -115 (BetUS)

Fight Breakdown

Curtis Blaydes’ greatest asset is his elite wrestling and ground and pound. That being said, he has made huge strides in his striking game over his last few fights, albeit he was unable to show much in his most recent fight before getting clipped.

He has developed better head movement and does a good job utilizing his 80-inch reach by fighting behind his jab and setting up his right hand. He likes to stick and pull back with a tight right guard.

In the past, one of the obvious issues with Blaydes was that when he was getting touched up, it was evident in his reactions how uncomfortable he was being hit. He has since shown more composure, but it is likely that if he is cracked, we could see him instinctively level change, an instinct that heavy hitters have used to their advantage to time him in the past.

On his terms, Blaydes likes to use his 1-2 to set up his takedown. He will try to land it consistently and make the read on when his opponents sit down in their stance to counter, at which point he drops to the hips behind the jab, and attacks the double leg. In top position he does a good job of mixing up the angles that he drops elbows from, rolling over his opponents wrists, as well as tight shots to maintain chest pressure.

Jailton Almeida is a powerful striker, small for the weightless but that lends itself to his speed. he has a great right low kick and left switch kick to the head. He does not really overextend on his boxing, so he does have to work his way in to land, but he has fairly accurate strikes when in range. He stays pretty much entered when throwing, both because he wants to be ready to shoot behind his strikes and be in a position to follow up; however, sometimes, this does create a vulnerability to being countered over the top when he kicks. Curtis Blaydes does not typically counter-strike, usually leading, defending, and then trying to get back onto the lead in order to set things up. When the two collide, whoever establishes themself as leading the exchanges will be in the more comfortable position.

We see very little of Almeida’s striking; he almost always uses just enough to get himself to the takedowns. He likes to feint, throw high to raise the guard and then blast double, running his opponent to the cage to complete it. He likes to collect the far wrist and force back exposure or mount.

The biggest difference between the two ground specialists is while Blaydes looks to secure position and chip away with strikes from top, Almeida is setting up submissions. He has the ability to snatch different positions during scrambles and transitions, and also set things up from a strong static scenario as well.


Blaydes and Almeida have the same goal in every fight. They both want top position and to control until a finish materializes from there. Blaydes has shown more and has shown an evolution in his striking, whereas Almeida is probably naturally the faster and more dynamic striker.

As long as it’s on the feet, there are risks for both men, but ultimately, whoever dominates the wrestling positions will largely win.

I do believe that, especially at heavyweight, if we find both men in top position over the five rounds, Almeida will have a more aggressive bottom game, looking to sweep especially.

Blaydes will be looking to wrestle up, but I also think he will likely offer more submission opportunities doing so than vice versa, in particular exposing his back, which is more dangerous against Almeida’s style.

At even odds, its a pick-em, I believe that Almeida will have more finishing opportunities, whether or not he takes the risks to utilize them remains to be seen but positionally I think he has more in his bag of tricks which leads me to lean his direction.

Pick: Jailton Almeida to win (-115 at BetUS)

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