This is one example of a UFC event where my knowledge of most of the participants just isn’t up to par. My picks are therefore mostly based on the betting markets:
- Michael Bisping over Tim Kennedy
- Kyle Noke over Patrick Cote
- Elias Theodorou over Sheldon Westcott
- Chad Laprise over Olivier Aubin-Mercier
- Dustin Poirier over Akira Corassani
- Sam Stout over K.J. Noons
- Sarah Kaufman over Leslie Smith
- Ryan Jimmo over Sean O’Connell
- George Roop over Dustin Kimura
- Mark Bocek over Mike de la Torre
- Nordine Taleb over Vik Grujic
- Richard Walsh over Chris Indich
- Mitch Gagnon over Tim Gorman
PICKS TO DATE
Last Event: 4-3 (57.1%)
Year to Date: 74-41 (64.3%)
My picks for the UFC Fight Night in Abu Dhabi might have had a “PRIDE NEVER DIE” feel to them. I had Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira beating Roy Nelson and Tatsuya Kawajiri beating Clay Guida. I wasn’t surprised that Nelson won by knockout, but in retrospect, I probably should have predicted that outcome as Nogueira has been getting knocked down on a routine basis in recent years. I was surprised at Guida’s ability to out-strike Kawajiri, an advantage that changed the dynamic of the fight in Guida’s favor.
As it turns out, simply picking chalk was the way to go for that event outside of Ramsey Nijem’s win over Beneil Dariush. I’m mostly avoiding underdog picks for the TUF Nations Finale but I am taking slight underdog Chad Laprise to defeat submission specialist Olivier Aubin-Mercier.
DEGENERATE GAMBLER’S CORNER
Last Event: -$2.00
Current Bankroll: $57.23
Total Investment: $122.24
Total Return: $7.23
Return on Investment: 5.9%
Like the degenerate gambler I am, I appear to have bet on Kyle Noke at the worst available price so far. I placed a $3.75 risk to win $3.00 on Noke as a -125 favorite as I believe he’s just a better mixed martial artist than Patrick Cote is. I feel that the worst-case scenario for Noke is to stand and bang with Cote, and that Noke should be very competitive with Cote standing. Noke is clearly the superior grappler and is a serious threat to finish if he takes the fight to the ground. Perhaps I’m massively overrating Noke or underrating Cote, but this seems like too good of an opportunity to pass up.
And because I’m feeling particularly degenerate today, I’m placing bets on fighters I know little about completely based on market fluctuations:
-A minimum bet on Elias Theodorou at -155, risking $0.78 to win $0.50. Theodorou opened at -270 but quickly dropped all the way to -110 before bouncing up to his current price. Usually the sportsbooks have at least a decent idea of what the price on a fight should be… I’m assuming that there’s a reason they opened Theodorou as the strong favorite to win.
-A minimum bet on Chad Laprise at +105, risking $0.50 to win $0.53. I’m using the same logic here – Laprise opened up at -150 and is now the underdog. That takes Laprise from an expected 60% chance of winning to an expected 49% chance of winning. Again, I feel like the books opened Laprise as the favorite for a reason.
Finally, I have a bet on George Roop at -130, risking $1.30 to win $1.00. His opponent is Dustin Kimura, a fighter I feel is far too one-dimensional to succeed in the UFC long-term. Kimura is a submission specialist with below-average striking and almost no offensive wrestling. It seems like Roop should be able to keep the fight standing and win either on points or by TKO.
So, to summarize:
Kyle Noke -125: $3.75 to win $3.00
George Roop -130: $1.30 to win $1.00
Elias Theodorou -155: $0.78 to win $0.50
Chad Laprise +105: $0.50 to win $0.53
Mandatory disclaimer: I am NOT a betting professional and I do NOT recommend you follow my plays in any serious way. I’m doing this for fun and as an experiment, not a livelihood. If you make any bets, you do so at your own risk.
Best of luck and enjoy the fights!