Better late than never right? With UFC 169 just 2 nights away, we’re back with our full predictions and bets for this stacked Super Bowl weekend card! We already gave you our main card predictions and bets so we’re here to give you our picks and bets from the preliminary card as well as adding a couple parlays to our initial set of plays. The fights get under way at 6:30 pm ET with 3 Fight Pass prelims fights which lead into the Fox Sports 1 prelims at 8:00 pm ET and those fights are of course followed by the main card which will be live on pay-per-view at 10:00 pm ET. If you haven’t checked out Reed Kuhn’s Fightnomics it is packed with ridiculous amounts of MMA stats and is just $10 or so if you buy the Kindle version on Amazon.
There was just one model pick that wasn’t covered in our main card picks and that is Nick Catone vs Tom Watson. Last time we bet against Watson, it paid off as we picked Thales Leites to smother him with jiu jitsu at UFC 163. While Catone can’t apply the same style as Leites, he quite possibly will be able to lay on top of Watson for the entire 15 minutes. If we’re being honest here, neither of these guys is ever coming close to a title. In fact, either could be cut if they lose this fight badly. Catone is 3-4 in his UFC career, but does hold a notable win over Costa Philippou and only lost via split decision to Mark Munoz. Watson is just 1-2 in his UFC career, but his lone win over Stanislav Nedkov didn’t look to be going his way for the entire first round. Watson has just a 44% takedown defense rating and has yet to land a takedown in his UFC fights. Catone on the other hand, lands an average of 3.47 takedowns per fight and lands at 44% accuracy while defending 83% of takedowns attempted against. Watson lands a lot of strikes, 3.88 per minute, but like a lot of wild strikers, he absorbs even more, 4.36 per minute. Based on all this, and the fact that Catone is favoured by our model, we placed a 3 unit bet on Catone at 2.65 to 1.
In terms of non-model picks, the first is Chris Cariaso to defeat Danny Martinez. Martinez is a guy who has collected all his wins against no-name opponents and tends to lose any time he faces any quality opponent. There is no reason to expect that trend to end with his UFC debut against Cariaso this weekend. Cariaso actually opened as a 1.36 to 1 favourite and has since climbed all the way to 1.67 to 1. At that level, Martinez’s UFC calibre opponent holds huge value. We placed a 3 unit bet on Cariaso at 1.67 to 1.
As we described in our main card picks, we are pretty confident in our predictions on the last 3 fights of the night. We don’t see any way Lamas is able to steal Aldo’s title. Faber was controlled almost throughout the entire 25 minutes he faced Renan Barao and we expect a similar result on Saturday. Finally, there are no obvious ways Alistair “The Reem” Overeem loses to Frank Mir. We did get burned betting on Overeem to defeat Antonio Silva, but that was absolutely a fight he should have won, he just acted like a complete idiot in round 3. We don’t expect his fight with Mir to last that long so hopefully he won’t have the chance to be a moron. We placed a 2 unit bet on those 3 favourites to win at 2.15 to 1.
In our other parlay at 169, the first leg will be Clint Hester to defeat Andy Enz. Enz is 7-0, but he has never fought anyone the calibre of Hester. A couple of those wins too were split decisions over guys we’ve never heard of, in Nic Herron-Webb and Tyler Milner. The biggest threat to Hester is the submission game of Enz, but we expect he will come in well prepared and will be able to withstand the majority of Enz’s attempts. That is if Enz is even able to get Hester in a position where he can attempt a submission. Parlayed with Hester will be Al Iaquinta. Also similar to Hester, Iaquinta will be fighting an undefeated debuting fighter as he takes on the 6-0 Kevin Lee. Being the much more experienced competitor, Iaquinta should be able to handle everything Lee throws at him. Lee doesn’t look to have any glaring holes in his game in the film we watched, but he also doesn’t look to be overly strong in any area. Obviously, Iaquinta is not going to be one to lie there while Lee submits him, which is almost what it looked like watching Lee’s fights on Youtube. We placed a 2 unit bet at 2.22 to 1 on Hester and Iaquinta to defeat Enz and Lee.
Don’t forget to give us a follow on Twitter and Facebook. Remember also to check out Reed Kuhn’s Fightnomics to get all the MMA stats you’ll ever need. After UFC 169, there will be a weekend off before we jump into UFC Fight Night 36: Machida vs Mousasi which also features Jacare Souza vs Francis Carmont and will be live from Brazil!
Barao, Aldo, Overeem parlay. 2 units at 2.15 to 1
Trujillo over Varner. 3 units at 2.56 to 1
Catone over Watson. 3 units at 2.65 to 1
Cariaso over Martinez. 3 units at 1.67 to 1
Hester and Iaquinta parlay. 2 units at 2.22 to 1