By Dan “Get Off Me” George
The first pay-per-view event of 2013 is set to kick off this weekend from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada, and with it comes a lot of questions about the fighters involved. Can Frankie Edgar show Rashad Evans that dropping down a weight class to fight for a title is a wise decision? Will Alistair Overeem manage to stake his claim for #1 contendership without screwing everything up again? Will Dana White finally get the revenge he’s always wanted by strangling Steve Mazzagatti to death after he blows a call during the main event?
All these questions and more will be answered in just two short days, so follow us after the jump as we highlight one bout from the undercard and all the main card bouts in order to ensure that you start off the new year with a little extra cash in your pocket. All betting lines come courtesy of BestFightOdds.
Volkmann is about as predictable as fighters come: a wrestler with limited striking who has no qualms about grinding out a 3 round decision. At 155lbs, all of Volkmann’s fights have ended up on the ground, so this may boil down to whether or not Green will be able to submit Volkmann off his back like Paul Sass was able to do at UFC 146. At -380, I am willing to bet that Volkmann is able to avoid getting caught by Green’s submissions and score a decision win.
A Team Alpha Male fighter in a non title fight is generally a safe bet, but Benavidez sitting at -250 is a little too rich for my tastes, however. Ian McCall is as durable as they come and even though he has had a rough go in life (especially of late), he has the speed and craftiness to give Joseph all he can handle. The prop bet that this fight goes the distance is the safest bet here.
Jon Fitch showcased both his entertaining side andhis excellent submissions defense against Erick Silva in his last outing at UFC 153. Demian Maia is a submission specialist –perhaps the best submission fighter Fitch has ever faced — and the very fact that Jon has managed to stay away from being submitted in his UFC career may be his undoing here. Fitch’s baiting style may catch up to him here, as I believe Maia will be both technically sound and strong enough to submit Fitch if the opportunity presents itself. Demian Maia for the submission victory upset at +150 is the most appealing underdog bet on the main card due to the high likelihood that this fight will end up on the mat.
The -400 line suggests Alistair will be able to find Silva’s chin (which, come on) before this fight finds the ground. Antonio Silva was not afraid to trade with Browne in his KO victory at UFC on FX 5, which could be problematic should he entertain that same notion with perhaps the most elite striker in the heavyweight division. I’m going to take the obvious bet here and say that Alistair stuffs the takedown attempts and uses his superior striking to become the no.1 contender to
Junior’s Cain’s heavyweight title.
As much as it would be nice to think Lil’ Nog will catch Rashad in this fight, the steep price of -500 for Evans basically crushes those dreams. Not sure how this fight was thought up by the match makers, but if Lil’Nog’s track record against wrestlers in the UFC is any indication, Rashad would not be an ideal opponent for competitive purposes. Evans will crawl out at the opening bell, use his speed to exploit the openings created by Lil’ Nog’s boxing heavy offense, and take this fight to the mat, where he might even finish the Brazilian legend.
Aldo is one of the most dominant champions in the UFC, a consensus top five pound-for-pound fighter who has rarely shown vulnerability inside the Octagon. Edgar will be going into his 7th straight title fight at a weight class that many feel he should have been fighting at all along. There are several variables in this fight, but the most glaring one is whether or not Edgar’s lead leg will be able to withstand Aldo’s onslaught of kicks long enough to use his excellent conditioning as a determining factor. This will undoubtedly be Aldo’s toughest fight to date, as many believe he is fighting the true lightweight champion here and a guy who will dictate a pace that Aldo will not be able to match. Honestly, it might just be best to sit back and enjoy this superfight, because the lines just aren’t wide enough to warrant a big bet.
Parlay 3 (Bellator Special)
Enjoy the fights and may the winners be yours!