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Gambling Addiction Enabler: UFC 128 Edition

(Something’s different here. I just can’t put my finger on it)

It kind of snuck up on you there, didn’t it? Don’t worry, us too. Funny, we must’ve  had other stuff on our minds this week because it feels like we haven’t given UFC 128 the attention it probably deserves. Without the UFC’s historic acquisition of that other company whose name already escapes us, this weekend’s main event featuring largely overlooked champion Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and insanely hyped challenger Jon Jones would be one of the most hotly anticipated fights of the year. Instead, it feels as if it’s already on top of us and we haven’t even figured out if Jones and Rashad Evans are still boys yet.

Anyway, you know what you came here for. As always, the odds for this week’s event come to us from Sportsbook.com and our picks are presented for entertainment purposes only. Also, for the purposes of WINNING MAJOR WADS OF CASH! What! … yeah … ahem … you’ll have to excuse us, we’re pretty jacked about this one. After the jump find our foolproof scheme for checking major bank at UFC 128, all without leaving your couch.

PPV FIGHTS

Mauricio “Shogun” Rua (+160) vs. Jon Jones (-200)
Urijah Faber (-500) vs. Eddie Wineland (+300)
Jim Miller (-275) vs. Kamal Shalorus (+215)
Nate Marquardt (-325) vs. Dan Miller (+250)
Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic (+190) vs. Brendan Schaub (-240)

SPIKE TV FIGHTS

Luiz Cane (-200) vs. Eliot Marshall (+160)
Edson Barboza (-340) vs. Anthony Njokuani (+260)

FACEBOOK FIGHTS

Ricardo Almeida (-185) vs. Mike Pyle (+155)
Kurt Pellegrino (+125) vs. Gleison Tibau (-155)

PRELIMS

Joseph Benavidez (-525) vs. Ian Loveland (+325)
Raphael Assuncao (+130) vs. Erik Koch (-160)
Nick Catone (-240) vs. Costantinos Philippou (+190)

The Main Event: Regardless of the fact that certain “serious journalists” are authoring columns that read as if Jones has already won, let’s not forget that Shogun is also pretty OK at this whole MMA fighting thing. Keep in mind, when oddsmakers set the line (any line) they’re really only trying to cover their own asses by splitting the betting 50/50, so opening the 19-4 champion as a dog may have just been a preemptive strike against the crazy amounts of Jones money they knew would come pouring in. In our book, this fight is a gamble in every sense of the word.

Jones may well be too big, too athletic, too next-level for Rua (or anybody) to handle, but we’ve still never seen how he’ll respond to any sort of adversity in the cage. If Shogun can use his trademark aggressiveness to put Jonny Bones on the defensive, hell, anything could happen. Not only that, but there’s no telling how much The Rashad Evans Soap Opera has distracted Jones during his already truncated prep time for this fight. On the other hand, Shogun is coming off his umpteenth knee surgery, had his opponent switched on him just a few weeks ago and hasn’t been in the Octagon for more than 10 months. It’s a goddamn question wrapped in a riddle, no doubt about it.

The verdict? Bet your heart, son. Either that or just get out of the way and enjoy the show.
The Good Dogs: Aside from Rua, there’s not a lot here that’s going to blow your hair back. We like Pellegrino’s chances against Tibau at +125 and Mike Pyle looks reasonably attractive at +155, after watching Almeida get dispatched with a quickness by stinkin’ Matt Hughes of all people at UFC 117. And no, “Cachorrao” your UD over TJ Grant didn’t get you out of our doghouse. Marshall has a chance – a chance, we say – to wrestle Luiz Cane into a living death, but given Marshall’s unspoken worries that Joe Silva finds him boring (What, you didn’t read about that shit? Shame on you.) we’re afraid he’ll do something stupid like come out and try to be “exciting.” If he does that, you might as well kiss your money goodbye.

Other Good Ways to Lose Your Shirt: Well, if you feel like making a donation to your local bookie’s retirement fund allow us to recommend surefire losers like Wineland, Loveland, CroCop and Dan Miller, any one of which will separate you from your money as well as another. If you’re actually interested in success (notice how we scrupulously avoided using the word “winning” there? Yeah, that shit is already so tired) you should steer clear of those dudes like the plague.

Ordinarily, we’d say the same thing about Shalorus, but with the way things have been going for top contenders in the lightweight division recently we’d rather not tempt fate. The only thing we know for sure about that fight is that both Miller and Shalorus will come to the cage with the weird bodies of 1920s carnival wrestlers and Shalrous will probably break his hand throwing huge bombs. How it turns out after that is anybody’s best guess.

The PotatoParlay: Sometimes it’s best not to overthink it. Run the table with the PPV faves: Schaub-Marquardt-Jim Miller-Faber for the win.

(CD)

Cagepotato Comments

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Koeikan- March 18, 2011 at 11:28 am
"The only thing we know for sure about that fight is that both Miller and Shalorus will come to the cage with the weird bodies of 1920s carnival wrestlers..."

Pure win.
Krusher Khan- March 16, 2011 at 5:55 pm
Jim Miller is overrated IMO, Shalorus by UD.
Kimbos Bread- March 16, 2011 at 2:59 pm
Cro Cop has a very good chance of getting the KTFO'd award of the night.
jayray- March 16, 2011 at 2:10 pm
after Almeida loses he should be forced to downgrade his name to "Medium-size Dog"
superflat- March 16, 2011 at 1:51 pm
It's worth mentioning that Shalarous has a cannonball for a head.
mahlbawlz- March 16, 2011 at 12:30 pm
It's kind of crazy you guys are writing off cro cop. it's not like schaub beat gonzaga like JDS did. cro cop is legit.
ThrashingMad- March 16, 2011 at 11:58 am
You guys honestly think that Mike Pyle, a grappler, is going to beat Ricardo Almeida, one of the best grapplers in all of mma. Come on, Hughes catching him means nothing in the context of this fight. Almeida by dominating UD.

I don't know why people aren't throwing money at the Arab too, considering the Miller has had trouble with wrestlers in the past.

Good dogs are definitely, Shogun, Shalorus, and Njokuani.
ghostboner- March 16, 2011 at 11:52 am
Short notice for Jones? Don't think so. I read somewhere how Jones has been training with Rashad for the last 10 months, his specific job being to imitate Shogun. Jones been preparing for this one for 10 months, plus he just fought so he should be in great shape. Which will make it oh so much sweeter when Shogun knocks his block off.
Kid Clam Curtains- March 16, 2011 at 11:48 am
I have a boner for the Barboza v enjoekowanny (sp?) fight.
Fried Taco- March 16, 2011 at 11:37 am
I'm not worried about losing my shirt, cuz I'm gonna win a new one from MC Hammer!
El Guapo- March 16, 2011 at 11:22 am
Karma... "Ain't nothing but a G thang, baby." Do it! Do it for Nate Dog!! I'm not talking about the younger Diaz bro, either.
El Guapo- March 16, 2011 at 11:19 am
Shogun's balky limb is the only thing holding me back from throwing a G on him. Well, that and the fact I don't actually have a G to throw on him..
Lopes- March 16, 2011 at 11:14 am
Miller has Shalorus?

Miller gonna get raped.
blackboxmma- March 16, 2011 at 10:59 am
Every underdog looks like they have a chance on this card. Mike Pyle is more hungry than Almeid and should geet the win.
mDino- March 16, 2011 at 10:53 am
lol Goulet'd.
ya cro cop in great form has a very good chance of beating schaub.
the chef- March 16, 2011 at 10:47 am
Put it all on Cro Cop
LOKI- March 16, 2011 at 10:42 am
I cant believe even after all that he has fallen short, that CroCop can seriously be a dog to a former Footballer who looks like Paul Rubens said "Shazaam!"and has a chin like Jonathan Goulet.
portland mma- March 16, 2011 at 10:35 am
Fuuuuck! I'm going out for post St. Patrick's day drunkenness on Saturday, this will be the first card I will have missed in a few years. I'm going to cry if some really crazy shit happens, which is almost guaranteed.
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