(Silva hilariously reacts to the news that Diaz has missed his open workouts, via ZombieProphet.)
Can we level with you for a second, Nation? Last week, we dropped a ridiculous amount of money on a Krylov + Sicilia + Bader + Lusty Gusty parlay. Three quarters of the way through it, we felt like the precogs in Minority Report, and were already buying up rounds at the bar for complete strangers. “As soon as Gustafsson levels Rumble, free Patron for everyone!” we shouted to a chorus of cheers and back pats. The air of confidence surging through us was addictive, to the point that we even asked our high school crush, Jenny Bracegirdle, out on a date. Just coffee, but still, we were feeling it.
And then, the rug was swept out from under us, as it so often is. We mean literally. We couldn’t pay our tab, and the bouncers wrapped us in a rug and heaved us into a dumpster. Needless to say, Jenny Bracegirdle has yet to return our calls.
The point is, we could use a little extra cash this weekend, and we’re sure you could as well. Which is why we brought back our gambling expert, Dan George, to break out an old favorite and potentially save us from yet another weekend spent nursing our fractured egos (also, wrists). So join us after the jump for the return of the Gambling Addiction Enabler: UFC 183 Edition.
Stay the Hell Away From
Both fighters here are sporting a 1-2 record over their past three contests, and both have a propensity to go the distance inside the octagon. Watson and Natal also seem to share a similar fighting style, preferring (somewhat unpolished) striking to the grappling game, which could sabotage the alluring -130 prop bet that this fight goes the distance. Save the stress and cash for later on in the evening.
The odds alone make a strong case to simply sit back and enjoy what is sure to be a very close fight. Gastelum is most likely the razor thin favorite due to his impressive submission win over Jake Ellenberger just 2 months ago, coupled with his perfect 10-0 record. Woodley, however, will possess the experience advantage in this fight and will really be the one answering the questions as to whether or not he “chokes in big fights” — Dana White, ever the honest abe-hole.
If Woodley has not learned how to stay off the fence since his fights with Jake Shields and Nate Marquardt or how to close the distance since his bout with Rory MacDonald, than we may see Woodley once again be relegated to bridesmaid status on Saturday night. Both men have KO power, strong wrestling backgrounds, and are accustomed to imposing their will on their opponents, which makes this one simply too close to call.
The Good Dogs
Diego Brandao is coming off back to back losses to Dustin Poirier and Conor McGregor, which may not necessarily mean that he is fighting for his job, but surely will be looking to right the ship at 145lbs to avoid going 0-3. With his grappling background and solid ground game, Hettes has a good chance to re-create the similar environment that Darren Elkins was able to thrive in against Brandao — one which chewed up the clock and limited Diego’s ability to create space and earn points on the cards. Look for the Sworysville, Pennsylvania native to use his slight size advantage in this fight to blanket Diego en route to a decision victory. It might not be pretty, but all those extra bills in your wallet sure will be.
It may be going on 6 years now since Alves was a title contender, but he has to be the most alluring underdog on the main card here, based solely on the likelihood that this fight stays on the feet. Jordan Mein will not be looking for takedowns and may gain a false sense of security in his striking game against the ultra technical Alves, who likely holds an advantage in the counter striking department. Look for Alves to establish his patented (not to mention, vicious) leg kicks early on and mix in straight punches behind them to potentially catch Mein and pull off the upset.
Perhaps the sexiest underdog pick on the card and not only for obvious reasons, Meisha is a fine option when looking at the probability that McMann will be looking to get this fight to the ground early. Meisha is ever-improving, and look no further than the cerebral striking clinic she put on against Rin Nakai in the early rounds of their fight at Fight Night 52. Tate has fought consistently strong competition and only lost to the very best over the past 5 years, while McMann seems to be dominant over the lower-tiered ladies at 135lbs. This will be McMann’s second toughest test next to Rousey and may highlight McMann’s less evolved overall MMA skills if Meisha is able to avoid being taken down and keep McMann at a distance.
If you like Joe Lauzon here, chances are you are banking on his potential to submit Iaquinta, much like Mitch Clarke was able to do when he scored a massive upset over the heavy handed Serra Longo standout. Lauzon has a shot to pull off the upset here if he is able to avoid getting clipped by Iaquinta during his trademark blitz to begin the fight. Iaquinta may have looked outstanding against Pearson in his last outing, but Pearson never really threatened the takedown and left Al free to bear down and throw power shots. If Joe can mix it up and keep Al guessing, he should be able to land a takedown or two, wear Iaqunita out, and possibly catch him in a late submission.
(Ed note: In my completely unbiased opinion, my boy Joey Lauz is going to MURK THE SHIT OUT OF YOU, IAQUINTA. WOOO!!!!)
Other Main Card Bouts
The only reason “The Barbarian” does not make the “good dogs” section is because Leites seems to have improved his striking to the point that he may be able to close the distance on Boetsch and get the fight on the ground before Tim has a chance to counter. Boetsch excels when he is able to brawl with his opponents, and while Leites is coming off back-to-back KO victories, he will surely not be looking to exchange with Boetsch if he can get this fight to the ground. This is supported by the inflated -475 line in favor of Thales.
We have all read about the props for the upcoming superbowl, but just imagine the fun the bookies could have had with props on Nick Diaz leading up to and during Saturday’s fight. Will Nick miss his flight to Las Vegas? Will Nick miss the open workouts? Will Nick land a Stockton slap during the fight? The possibilities are endless and probably more interesting than picking a winner between Silva and Diaz.
It is undeniable that this fight is interesting and worthy of being a main event, but the prospect that Nick most likely won’t “survive this shit” is slowly starting to become more prevalent as you read the headlines in advance of the weigh-ins. Whether or not Diaz is just showing up to collect a big payday or not, he is a proud fighter who has never been stopped inside the Octagon and will probably do better than most believe. He might just have an edge on the ground as well, but the open stance and looping punches he often resorts to simply offer too many openings for the Spider. Silva should be able to use this fight for what many believe it was made for, a tune up/showcase to prove he can still be a viable contender for a title shot in the immediate future.
A -150 prop bet that Anderson wins inside the distance is your best bet, as Nick is hittable and that’s really all it takes. While he probably won’t get knocked out cold, Diaz may have to cover up until the referee steps in to call the fight off.
-Silva inside the distance
-Tate vs McMann goes the distance
Enjoy the fights and may the winners be yours!