UFC on Fuel TV 10: Nogueira vs Werdum Early Picks

While UFC on Fuel TV 10 is not as big an event as those that surround it (UFC 160 and UFC 161), there is no shortage of value on this card from Fortaleza, Brazil. It is also serves as the finale to TUF: Brazil II which features fighters in the welterweight division. The card is about a week away now, taking place on Saturday, June 8, 2013.

The main event of this card features Fabricion Werdum taking on Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira in the heavyweight division. The men face off after coaching against each other on the second season of TUF: Brazil. Werdum comes into this fight riding a 2 fight win streak, and is 5-1 in his last 6 including victories over recent heavyweight title contender, Antonio Silva and one of the greatest heavyweight fighters of all time, Fedor Emelianenko (no doubt Fedor was great, but with the 3 consecutive losses to Werdum, Silva and Henderson, was he actually as good as people thought, or did his management just choose good opponents for him?) Nogueira’s recent record has been spotty, going 3-3 in his last 6 with 2 losses to Frank Mir and a loss to the champ, Cain Velasquez. Werdum is 1 inch taller, but the two have identical reach at 77 inches. Our model has Werdum as a very slight favourite in this one. Since he sits at just 1.37 to 1, there is no value in placing a bet.

In a light heavyweight match-up on the card, Thiago Silva welcomes Rafael Cavalcante to the Octagon from Strikeforce. Both guys enter the fight off significant layoffs due to failed drug tests. Cavalcante managed to reach the top of the Strikeforce light heavyweight division, defeating Mohammed “King Mo” Lawal by TKO back in August, 2010. In his first defense, he lost to Dan Henderson by TKO. Silva, on the other hand, has not been able to pick up a (non-reversed) victory in his last 4 fights. In two of those fights, he took home the victory which was subsequently taken away because he failed his post-fight drug test. With losses to top UFC lightheavyweights Rashad Evans, Alexander Gustafsson and Lyoto Machida, Silva is likely a few good victories away from a title shot. The fighters have identical height and reach at 73 and 74 inches respectively. The striking game seems to favour Silva as he lands a higher number of strikes at a similar efficiency while getting hit less often. In addition, he lands more takedowns and has a higher takedown accuracy against higher level opponents than Cavalcante. Our model has Silva as a significant favourite so we placed a 1.5 unit bet at 2.75 to 1.

In the current second fight of the main card, Erick Silva takes on Jason High. In this fight, our model has High, the significant underdog as a significant favourite. High is making his octagon debut after 3 straight Strikeforce victories. Silva is 2-2 in the octagon and will make for a tough test for High to start his UFC career. Silva was able to defeat UFC vet Charlie Brennemen, and he dominated Carlo Prater, but lost the fight via DQ for strikes to the back of the head. In his most recent fight, Silva lost to Jon Fitch at UFC 153 via unanimous decision. The stat line tells us Silva is the more effective striker, but also absorbs way more punches than High. Silva also holds advantages in takedowns and submissions. Realistically, the probability of Silva wiping the mat with High is great, but when our model has a significant underdog winning, we generally will bet with the model. Therefore, we placed a 1.5 unit bet on High at 4.36 to 1.


Werdum over Nogueira. No bet
Silva over Cavalcante. 1.5 unit bet at 2.75 to 1
High over Silva. 1.5 unit bet at 4.36 to 1

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Here are the latest UFC on Fuel TV 10 odds:


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