I have a feeling we’re going to hear the word “athletic” a lot ...
Former Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) Middleweight champion, Luke Rockhold, gets another shot at the gold (albeit “interim”) this Saturday evening (Feb. 10, 2018) when he faces Cuban superhuman, Yoel Romero, in UFC 221’s pay-per-view (PPV) main event from inside Perth Arena in Perth, Australia.
Also in town are local heroes Mark Hunt, who takes on rising prospect Curtis Blaydes, and Tai Tuivasa, who throws down with Cyril Asker.
It’s almost Valentine’s Day, which means you need some extra dough to get something nice for that special someone. Here’s how to get it:
What Went Wrong at UFC Fight Night 125?
Well, I guess the karma for the Kim vs. Kish decision had to come from somewhere. I thought Tim Means clearly won the last two rounds against Sergio Moraes, but the judges disagreed, and without John Dodson, the other successful bets weren’t enough to cover the loss. Dumb luck giveth and it taketh away.
UFC 221 Odds For The Undercard:
Dong Hyun Kim (-155) vs. Damien Brown (+135)
Israel Adesanya (-300) vs. Rob Wilkinson (+250)
Alex Volkanovski (-170) vs. Jeremy Kennedy (+150)
Jussier Formiga (-130) vs. Ben Nguyen (+110)
Ross Pearson (-145) vs. Mizuto Hirota (+125)
Jose Quinonez (-220) vs. Teruto Ishihara (+180)
Daichi Abe (-130) vs. Luke Jumeau (+110)
Thoughts: You know what? I think it’s Ben Nguyen’s time.
Since his loss to Louis Smolka, Nguyen’s scrambling and counter-wrestling have improved leaps and bounds. Combined with his athleticism and stunning punching power, he’s become a legitimate threat to the division. I thought he had a real shot against Joseph Benavidez before that fight fell through and I believe his speed and power will carry him past Formiga. Aside from “Ben 10,” Dong Hyun Kim seems like a safe investment. He’s a proven scrapper who can hold his own on the feet and a sufficiently skilled takedown artist to keep Brown guessing all night.
UFC 221 Odds For The Main Card:
Luke Rockhold (-140) vs. Yoel Romero (+130)
Curtis Blaydes (-155) vs. Mark Hunt (+135)
Tai Tuivasa (-280) vs. Cyril Asker (+240)
Li Jingliang (-190) vs. Jake Matthews (+165)
Tyson Pedro (-265) vs. Saparbek Safarov (+225)
Thoughts: Putting Li Jingliang and Tyson Pedro together produces positive odds, so let’s work with that.
The majority of the mixed martial arts (MMA) media believe that Jake Matthews deserved the “L” in his Welterweight debut against Bojan Velickovic. And while I had it for Matthews, it wasn’t exactly a heartening performance. Li can match Velickovic’s prodigious strength and offers a cleaner, more powerful striking attack to back it up. I fully expect Li to tear up Matthews on the feet and hold his own in the grappling.
I know this sounds mean, but I believe any Light Heavyweight who can’t comfortably beat Gian Villante does not belong in UFC. Even giving Safarov the benefit of the doubt for it being a short-notice fight, that just wasn’t enough to sway me. Pedro’s striking is significantly smoother than Villante’s and his takedowns ought to be more than sufficient to overpower Safarov should the stand up get too hairy for him.
UFC 221 Best Bets:
- Single bet -- Ben Nguyen: Bet $50 to make $55
- Single bet -- Dong Hyun Kim: Bet $77.50 to make $50
- Parlay -- Li Jingliang and Tyson Pedro: Bet $70 to make $77
Luke Rockhold vs. Yoel Romero is the stuff dreams and highlight reels are made of. The rest? Well, that’s up to you. See you Saturday, Maniacs!
Remember that MMAmania.com will deliver live UFC 221 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.