Finally, a breath of fresh air.
The stagnant Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Heavyweight division gets a fresh kick in the rear this Saturday evening (May 14, 2016) when division champion Fabricio Werdum squares off with the surging Stipe Miocic in the former's native Brazil, headlining the absolutely loaded UFC 198.
The pay-per-view (PPV) co-main event inside Arena da Baixada in Curitiba pits grappling legend Ronaldo "Jacare" Souza against Vitor Belfort. UFC 198 will also feature Cris "Cyborg's" Octagon debut and "Shogun" Rua vs. Corey Anderson, if that tickles your fancy.
You'll have to shell out the dough for this one, so let's figure out how to recoup it ... with interest:
UFC 198 Odds For The Under Card:
Demian Maia (-300) vs. Matt Brown (+230)
Thiago Santos (-360) vs. Nate Marquardt (+300)
John Lineker (-220) vs. Rob Font (+180)
Patrick Cummins (+250) vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (+210)
Francisco Trinaldo (-225) vs. Yancy Medeiros (+185)
Sergio Moraes (-430) vs. Luan Chagas (+345)
Zubaira Tukhugov (-210) vs. Renato Carneiro (+175)
Thoughts: We’re a little short on quality underdogs here, so let’s just stick with the grievously undervalued Lineker.
Despite being far better suited for the Flyweight division, Lineker is no stranger to fighting Bantamweights -- he spent a large portion of his time on the Brazilian circuit fighting at 135 pounds. Font, simply put, has neither the long-range arsenal nor the tremendous chain wrestling needed to slow down the relentless onslaught of "Hands of Stone." He’s not knocking out Lineker in this lifetime and it’s damn near impossible to outwork the guy.
In other words, -220 on Lineker is a gift.
Aside from him, you might consider investing in Cummins. Nogueira is long past the time where he could explode out of Cummins’ steady takedowns and he’s not shown a prolific sweep or submission arsenal off of his back. He could spark Cummins coming in, but it previously took either brutal flurries or one of the best counters I’ve seen in ages to lay out "Durkin."
He’s a fairly safe investment.
Finally, we have Maia, who is incredibly well-suited to shutting down "The Immortal." Brown simply isn’t built to play the patient game needed to wear down the Brazilian and his eagerness to trade inside plays right into Maia’s hands. Need some slightly better odds in a parlay?
Look no further.
UFC 198 Odds For The Main Card:
Fabricio Werdum (-145) vs. Stipe Miocic (+125)
Ronaldo Souza (-300) vs. Vitor Belfort (+250)
Cristiane Justino (-1700) vs. Leslie Smith (+1100)
Corey Anderson (-240) vs. Mauricio Rua (+200)
Warlley Alves (-550) vs. Bryan Barberena (+425)
Thoughts: I legitimately think Miocic has what it takes to lift the title from Werdum. As brilliant as the champ is on the mat and in the clinch, his ranged game lacks any real cohesion. He throws a solid one-two combination and powerful kicks, but struggles to blend those aspects and has been punished by lesser boxers than Miocic for it. The Croatian-American also packs a sturdy defensive wrestling game, solid cardio and excellent game planning. He gets the belt, you get the cash. It's as simple as that.
UFC 198 Best Bets:
- Parlay: John Lineker and Patrick Cummins -- Bet $60 to make $62.40
- Parlay: Stipe Miocic and Demian Maia -- Bet $50 to make $100
Top-to-bottom, UFC 198 is just a really, really good card. Hope you join us for it, Maniacs.
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver live UFC 198 results on fight 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.