Unlike the freakish mismatches that plagued last weekend’s Strikeforce show, the odds for this Saturday’s UFC on FX 7: Belfort vs. Bisping event in Sao Paulo suggest a very competitive lineup of fights. In fact, two of the matches are virtually dead even, with a razor-thin margin between the favorite and the underdog. Here are the betting lines for the FX main card, courtesy of BestFightOdds.com:
Michael Bisping (-103) vs. Vitor Belfort (-107): This is about as close as it gets in MMA betting, though Belfort still comes in as a slight favorite. The line reflects the divide among fans on how the fight will play out — either Bisping will outstrike and outhustle the Phenom to a decision victory, or Belfort will maul Bisping in short order, finishing him via punches-to-the-back-of-head TKO. If you’re leaning strongly towards one of those results, feel free to put your money where your mouth is. But keep in mind that the fight is scheduled for five rounds, which certainly gives Bisping the edge if he manages to survive the first ten minutes.
Ben Rothwell (+100) vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (-110): Another close call in terms of odds, but I’m not sure that Gonzaga should be the slight favorite here. To me, he hasn’t yet shaken his reputation as a can-crusher, while Rothwell’s most recent appearance against Brendan Schaub proved him to be a ferocious finisher, hard to rattle, and in the best physical shape of his career.
C.B. Dollaway (+164) vs. Daniel Sarafian (-165): To refresh your memory, Daniel Sarafian is the TUF Brazil finalist who had to withdraw from his finale fight due to injury. The Sao Paulo native will be making his official UFC debut this weekend, and will face a significant jump in competition against 10-fight UFC veteran CB Dollaway. Sure, Sarafian will have hometown advantage, looked nasty on TUF, and Dollaway has been battling injuries of his own. Nevertheless, Dollaway’s advantage on the mat and experience edge makes the Doberman a worthwhile ‘dog.
Khabib Nurmagomedov (-172) vs. Thiago Tavares (+160): Are you really going to bet against a guy with an 18-0 record? Are you really going to bet against a guy who can pull off a wig like this? Don’t overthink this one.