We’re approaching a monumental weekend for MMA fans. One great advantage is the opportunity to throw away even more money betting on it. And here you thought you couldn’t go bankrupt just by staying home this weekend. With so many fights, we’ll just focus on the interesting ones, though interesting could mean a lot of different things when it comes to gambling.
It’s no surprise to see Fedor as the favorite here. Even amid rumors that he may be injured, he’s still Fedor. But if you’re of the opinion that Sylvia has just the right skill set to dethrone him, this line is about as good as you can hope for. Crazier things have happened (the Hindenburg explosion, that was pretty crazy, right?), and small action could still yield big results. You just don’t want to make Tim Sylvia your only hope for winning your girlfriend’s engagement ring back from that creepy guy who fleeced you on the Matt Hughes-Thiago Alves fight. You know the guy. He operates out of the Super 8. Doesn’t matter what city you live in.
Now here’s where you find out just what kind of a degenerate gambler you are. You don’t really believe that James Irvin is going to win — honestly, you don’t — but if you manage to talk yourself into it you must really be addicted to that rush.
Simply put, even with these odds Irvin is a worse bet than Sylvia. Sylvia’s size advantage might actually mean something, plus Fedor may or may not be injured/rusty. Silva is none of those things. That’s the story the odds are telling, and it’s the plain truth. Get it through your head and then move on.
Now we’re getting somewhere. It’s actually somewhat surprising to see Rothwell this much of an underdog. He’s a little bigger than Arlovski, has just as much power, and probably a better ground game. Arlovski has more quality experience and is a little quicker, but this line has more to do with oddsmakers believing that Rothwell isn’t as good as the IFL made him out to be.
Fair enough, I say, but he’s still very good and will come in well-prepared. That makes Rothwell a good bet with these odds. There’s still the chance he’ll get frozen by nerves and Arlovski will run over him, but that seems unlikely.
Frank Edgar (-165) vs. Hermes Franca (+135)
On paper, Edgar should win a methodical, boring decision here. Franca’s been out of action so long and we saw how he performed against another wrestler in Sean Sherk his last time out. But Edgar is no Sherk, and Franca needs this one like he needs to quit dying his hair as a lame cry for attention. For these reasons it’s worth taking a look at Franca. His jiu-jitsu game is strong everywhere and he has better stand-up than we’ve seen from Edgar lately. I wouldn’t be surprised to see Edgar try to power Franca to the mat and get himself caught in a tricky submission. At odds that are just better than even, it’s worth the risk.
Brandon Vera (-600) vs. Reese Andy (+400)
Now hear me out. Brandon Vera is a more talented fighter than Reese Andy. He should win this fight, and it’s pretty clear that oddsmakers share that viewpoint. But don’t write off Andy so quick. He’s a powerhouse with good ground-and-pound, and he’s fought at heavyweight so it isn’t as if he’s going to be undersized here.
What may really make the difference, however, is where Vera’s head is at. If he’s still dwelling on the loss to Werdum and he carries that fight into this one, he could easily wind up laying beneath Andy for three rounds. It won’t be pretty, but at these odds it’s worth a small risk.
Don’t even think about betting against Barnett in this one. What’re you, crazy? Unless he falls in love with the idea of standing toe-to-toe and knocking out Rizzo, Barnett will roll to victory without any trouble. Believe that.