Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) returns to Las Vegas, Nevada this Saturday night (September 5, 2015) with the UFC 191: "Johnson vs. Dodson 2" event live on pay-per-view (PPV) from the MGM Grand Garden Arena, and that means it is time to play Fantasy MMA with Kountermove.
For the Maniacs not looking to spend any money, Kountermove is offering a handful of free games for this PPV event as well.
If you are not familiar with how Kountermove works, here is what you need to know:
In Kountermove you build a team of five fighters utilizing a "salary cap" of $25,000 in fantasy money to spend on drafting the team you expect to perform the best on fight night. If your team performs well enough, you will likely have a share of cash prizes in any number of Kountermove's games.
Points* are scored with finishes, significant strikes, knockdowns, takedowns, dominant positions, and submission attempts. The more dominant your fighters' performance is, the more points you're going to score. For a detailed breakdown of how the scoring works, click here.
*Fighter statistics are provided by FightMetric LLC, the UFC's official stats provider.
Below I break down the UFC 191 PPV card to help give you an edge in Kountermove this weekend. Here is why you should avoid Demetrious Johnson, my star pick, and a handful of quick picks for the Saturday night event!
Why you should avoid Demetrious Johnson
Demetrious Johnson is the king of UFC's Flyweight division, but his $5,800 price tag in Kountermove this weekend makes him a very risky pick.
"Mighty Mouse" has won eight fights in a row, but his average career finish rate should make Fantasy players wary of his ability to take out John Dodson on Saturday night.
To compare Johnson's high price tag, take Ronda Rousey for example. The UFC's Bantamweight Queen has finished every fight of her career, and her two most recent outings cost $5,700 and $6,000 respectively. In both performances, "Rowdy" scored over 100 points, making her price tag more bearable.
For UFC's Flyweight champ, his last Fantasy performance -- an unbelievable 126 point outing against Kyoji Horiguchi -- cost Kountermove players $5,700.
This time around, "Mighty Mouse" is $100 more expensive, and facing a much stiffer test in Dodson, who has never once been finished in six career losses.
Ultimately, with so many finishers on UFC 191, I recommend staying away from the dominant champ this weekend.
Star Pick: Paul Felder ($5,200)
"The Irish Dragon" is hunting for blood at UFC 191, and Kountermove players will reap massive rewards by picking the Pennsylvania native this weekend.
With Felder coming off his first career loss in a very close decision against the dangerous Edson Barboza, you have to expect the flashy striker will be looking for a highlight reel knockout to push him right back into a top 10 fight.
Considering the Taekwondo black belt has knocked out seven opponents in 10 career victories, Felder's chances off finishing Ross Pearson seem exceptionally high.
Coupled with the fact that Pearson has taken a ton of punishment over his 27 fight career -- including three knockout losses -- "The Irish Dragon" is easily the star pick of UFC 191 at only $5,200.
Frank Mir ($4,600): You never know what you are going to get when you pick the former UFC Heavyweight champion Frank Mir. Just six months ago I was calling for his retirement after four straight losses, but after two straight knockout victories, I'm picking the resurgent Heavyweight to take out Andrei Arlovski at UFC 191.
Anthony Johnson ($5,600): "Rumble" may cost a pretty penny in Kountermove this weekend, but with the power to knock out any man in the Light Heavyweight division, it is hard to make a team without Johnson. In his last eight victories, the No. 1 Light Heavyweight contender knocked out six opponents, and Jimi Manuwa will be his next victim this Saturday night.
John Dodson ($4,800): Last, but certainly not least, is John Dodson. "The Magician" is unquestionably the biggest test for Demetrious Johnson in the Flyweight division, and with power to stop anyone 135 pounds or lighter, Dodson could be a very rewarding pick at UFC 191 if he pulls off the knockout upset. While a finish is far from a formality, the $4,800 price point could be too enticing to pass up for a heap of Kountermove players.
For more information on UFC 191, including the full fight card, results, news, and more, click here.