Paradoxically, it seems someone will go "night-night" in the western version of the "City That Never Sleeps" this weekend (Sat., May 25, 2013)
Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight Champion Cain Velasquez will attempt to make his first successful title defense when he takes on Brazilian behemoth Antonio Silva in the main event of UFC 160, which takes place this Saturday evening from MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.
If that isn't enough mixed martial arts (MMA) to sate your bloodlust, two of the division's premiere strikers, Junior dos Santos and Mark Hunt, will do battle in the co-featured fight of the night.
Indeed, from top-down, UFC 160's pay-per-view (PPV) card has all the ingredients for violent excitement and thrilling savagery. And, several potential money-making opportunities hiding just under the surface ... if you know where to find them in the local sportsbook.
Follow me below for a closer look at the latest odds behind -- and best bets for -- UFC 160: "Velasquez vs. Bigfoot 2:"
Before we get into the thick of UFC 160 things, I'd like to first issue a heart-felt apology. Recently, I've been mired in a losing streak. I take full responsibility. Keep in mind my suggestions are made to the best of my abilities, but I do not pretend to be infallible. It's a crazy sport. If you disagree with my reasoning, please provide your own. Hopefully, we can help one another improve.
Now that that's out of the way, let's get to it.
UFC 160 Odds For The Under Card:
Rick Story (-150) vs. Mike Pyle (+130)
Dennis Bermudez (-265) vs. Max Holloway (+225)
Colton Smith (-230) vs. Robert Whittaker (+190)
Khabib Nurmagomedov (-265) vs. Abel Trujillo (+225)
Stephen Thompson (-170) vs. Nah-Shon Burrell (+130)
Jeremy Stephens (-260) vs. Estevan Payan (+180)
Brian Bowles (-290) vs. George Roop (+210)
Thoughts: Frankly, I don’t have any confidence in these underdogs -- you’re probably better off parlaying favorites. Specifically, Story and Bermudez.
Story is a limited fighter because his stand up is plodding and wild and his takedown defense is far too porous. That said, he’s well-equipped to take out Pyle. "Quicksand" has not shown off an effective long-range striking game, relying on his newfound proficiency in the clinch to land big knees.
To do so, however, he winds up getting pressured and backed into the fence. In fact, this exact same vulnerability is what allowed Story to defeat Thiago Alves, who has some of the best knees in the sport. Story is crazily aggressive and adept at attacking when his opponent is near the cage, plus stupidly durable enough to withstand what Pyle throws at him.
Therefore, lay down some dough on Story, who should take a clear-cut decision.
Bermudez’s poor striking defense is likely going to keep him out of the division’s elite, but Holloway is tailor-made for him. The latter is a highly-skilled striker, but has not demonstrated the ability to consistently stay on his feet. When Garcia got it in his head to shoot, he had success dragging Holloway down, and Bermudez is an exponentially more talented wrestler with just as much aggression. Use Bermudez to beef up your parlays.
Of the others, Bowles might not be a bad idea; he’s decimated far superior fighters than Roop and unless his layoff included an amputation or two, really shouldn’t struggle at all.
UFC 160 Odds For The Main Card:
Cain Velasquez (-800) vs. Antonio Silva (+550)
Junior Dos Santos (-420) vs. Mark Hunt (+335)
Glover Teixeira (-300) vs. James Te Huna (+250)
Gray Maynard (-210) vs. T.J. Grant (+175)
Donald Cerrone (-300) vs. K.J. Noons (+250)
Thoughts: Again, I’ve got the favorites in a clean sweep. Grant has the best shot of the bunch, in my opinion, but his clinchwork puts him directly in Maynard’s wheelhouse. And his wrestling struggles against Evan Dunham don’t instill me with confidence.
The top three underdogs have punchers’ chances, but Velasquez’s previous annihilation of "Bigfoot," dos Santos’ resilience during the "Brown Pride" beating, and Teixeira’s grappling advantage make those unwise.
That just leaves Donald Cerrone vs. K.J. Noons, and even at -300, "Cowboy" is a worthwhile bet. While his striking deficiencies (namely an inability to strike effectively off his back foot) have become clear, he is still the more well-rounded of the two on the feet and packs vicious power in his kicks. Furthermore, while he doesn’t use it very often, Cerrone has the sort of wrestling necessary to repeatedly take down Jamie Varner, making it a case of not whether, but where, he will defeat Noons.
Use "Cowboy" to ensure a tidier profit with your other bets.
UFC 160 Best Bets:
- Single bet: Rick Story -- Bet $80 to make $53.33
- Parlay: Dennis Bermudez and Donald Cerrone -- Bet $70 to make $58.33
- Parlay: Dennis Bermudez and Brian Bowles -- Bet $60 to make $50.84
Heavyweight title fight, two possible division No. 1 contender eliminator matches (Heavyweight and Lightweight) and plenty of opportunities for memorable MMA finishes on Memorial Day weekend.
See you Saturday, Maniacs.
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver live UFC 160: "Velasquez vs. Bigfoot 2" results this Saturday night, which is as good a place as any to talk about all the action inside the Octagon, as well as what you've got riding on the sportsbook.