As it turns out, I am at odds with FPR on both the main event and the co-main event. I like Demetrious Johnson and Urijah Faber to win while FPR thinks I should choose Joseph Benavidez and Michael McDonald.
The reason I picked Johnson and Faber is because I believe those fighters both are very likely to win if their respective fights go to decision. Both fighters have a substantial wrestling advantage on paper. Benavidez and McDonald have higher FPR ratings because they’re better finishers. However we’re talking about a flyweight fight and a bantamweight fight. In those weight classes, competitive fights usually go to decision, even when highly skilled finishers are involved.
Right now, FPR treats flyweights exactly the same as heavyweights. In the future, I may consider having a different formula for different weight classes, emphasizing finishes more for heavier fighters and decisions more for lighter fighters. I’m not sure yet. If it turns out FPR is right and Benavidez and McDonald both win then there’s not much I can do but shrug my shoulders and once again admit that my numbers are smarter than I am.
Here are some quick thoughts on the prelim fights for this event:
-It pains me to pick against Ryan LaFlare because I really like him as a prospect. However, LaFlare’s UFC wins have been against low-level opponents in Benny Alloway and Santiago Ponzinibbio. By fighting Court McGee, LaFlare is taking a huge step up in competition. I’m picking against him for now, but if he wins prepare for me to get hyped up about him.
-I like Edson Barboza to beat Danny Castillo, but I worry that Castillo’s wrestling will cause more problems for Barboza than the betting public realizes. Barboza seems to be a fighter who gets overrated in general. I’m not sure I love this style matchup for him.
-FPR thinks Pat Healy vs. Bobby Green is a 50-50 fight but I suspect Healy’s wrestling/grinding style will be something Green doesn’t have a great answer for.
–Zach Makovsky is the former Bellator bantamweight champion and no pushover. I think he’s going to give Scott Jorgensen a very tough fight on Saturday.
–Cody McKenzie isn’t a good fighter but he’s not quite as terrible as people think he is, although he does look very goofy most of the time. I think Sam Stout beats him but how sure are we that Stout is going to stay out of that guillotine?
-I thought Roger Bowling was ahead two rounds to zero when he last fought Abel Trujillo. Now they’re fighting again and while FPR doesn’t hate Trujillo as much since I updated it Bowling is still the clear favorite to win in my eyes.
–Alp Ozkilic is making his UFC debut but he’s a more well-rounded fighter than Darren Uyenoyama. I think Ozkilic can stay on his feet and get a decision victory here.
DEGENERATE GAMBLER’S CORNER
Last time I won $5.79 on Mauricio Rua and got my money back from the draw between Antonio Silva and Mark Hunt. Improbably I’ve made a profit through two bets. Here’s what I’m doing for this event:
Original BR: $50.00, Current BR: $55.79
Last event: +$5.79
Nik Lentz +600: $1.32 to win $7.92
Court McGee -105: $2.00 to win $1.90
Danny Castillo +250: $0.85 to win $2.13
Cody McKenzie +220: $1.74 to win $3.83
I don’t really like the Nik Lentz bet at all because I do think Chad Mendes beats him the vast majority of the time. However I’ve already gone against my numbers on two fights on this card – at some point I have to either trust them or just admit I’m doing my own thing. FPR thinks there’s value on Lentz so I’m willing to lose $1.32 to take a look.
These fighters could easily go 0-4. In fact I think there’s a good chance they go 0-4. That’s why I haven’t put too much at risk here – if I do go 0-4 then I’m down a whopping 12 cents from where I started.
As always, I don’t recommend you follow my bets in any serious way. I’m doing this primarily for fun and there’s a reason I call it the “degenerate gambler’s corner.” If you place money on these bets you’re doing it at your own risk.
Best of luck and enjoy the fights!