We’re just about a week away from a very solid UFC Fight Night card which will go down from the US Bank Arena in Cincinnati, Ohio on Saturday, May 10. With main card odds released, we’re here to provide you our predictions and bets for the main card. Following Bellator 118 on May 2, we’ve been profitable at 4 straight events, for a total profit since UFC 168 of 61.67 units. To put that in perspective, if you had created an account with $1000 on December 28, 2013, you would now have $2233 in your account! Amazing numbers for only 4 months of betting and as always the full numbers are available in our detailed Track Record. By the way, if you haven’t checked out Reed Kuhn’s Fightnomics it is a must read for any UFC fan, or anyone interested in betting on UFC fights.
The main event of this pretty decent UFC Fight Night card features what should be an explosive welterweight battle between the Brazilian, Erick Silva and the American, Matt Brown. Before the betting lines were even released, we were really hoping, as fans of late career resurgences, that we’d be able to bet Matt Brown. Unfortunately, looking deeper into this match-up, at the current line of 2.70, the value isn’t quite where we’d like it to be. In addition, Silva is a few years younger, but more importantly, has spent much less time in the Octagon with just 7 UFC fights, 5 of which ended in the first round. Brown on the other hand has 16 UFC fights, most of which made it to at least the second round. The wear and tear experienced by Brown throughout his UFC career is likely far more than the wear and tear Silva has experienced. One thing you can count on from both these fighters is that they will start fast. On Brown’s current 6 fight winning streak, 5 of 6 fights have been TKO wins that didn’t make it to round 3. In his 7 UFC fights, Silva has only made it to the second round of a fight twice. Since our model backs Silva, and we feel there is a decent chance Silva wins, we have decided to pass on betting the outcome of this fight in favour of betting the round total. As we stated above, the majority of these guys fights finish quickly, so we bet 2 units on the under 1.5 rounds line at 1.95 at BetOnline.
The co-main event at this event features Lorenz Larkin and Costa Philippou in a middleweight fight. In this spot, we kind of feel the betting public is underestimating Philippou based on his last two performances. He has lost two straight to Francis Carmont and Luke Rockhold, consensus top 10 UFC middleweights. The Carmont fight was pretty awful to watch, Carmont basically took down and smothered Philippou for 3 full rounds. The Rockhold fight was more devastating for Philippou as Rockhold was able to beat Philippou at his own strength, winning the fight via TKO. Don’t get us wrong here, we agree Larkin should be favoured in this match-up, but he is unlikely to be able to match the wrestling performance displayed by Francis Carmont, and he has never shown very much knockout power that would allow him to match the performance of Rockhold. Our model favours Larkin and we expect he will earn a decision victory. The over 2.5 rounds line is now down under 1.50, so we will avoid laying our money on that one, but will watch how it moves as the fight approaches.
In another fight where we favour the favourite, we see Erik Koch defeating the “Detroit Superstar” Daron Cruickshank. While Cruickshank’s performance against Mike Rio was somewhat impressive, a second round wheel kick knockout is not enough for us to completely change our opinion of him. He is a middle tier lightweight who will beat the low level competition, but lose to any of the upper tier guys; a gate keeper if you will. Unfortunately for Cruickshank, Erik Koch fits into the category of upper tier lightweight. At featherweight, Koch managed a record of 5-3 across the UFC and WEC, with losses to top talent in Chad Mendes, Ricardo Lamas and Dustin Poirier. In his first lightweight fight, Koch was able to earn a TKO victory of Rafaello Oliveira in just 1 minute and 24 seconds. While it may take him the full 15 minutes, we expect Koch to be able to get the job done against Cruickshank. We’ll hold off on a bet on this one for now, but Koch is a guy we’ll be eyeing to potentially add to a parlay as the fights approach.
In the middle of the main card, Neil Magny and Tim Means will collide. This welterweight match-up is in a way a grappler vs striker fight. Tim Means is the striker with a record of 20-5 and 15 of his 20 wins coming by way of knockout. We are calling Neil Magny the grappler as he has a record of 9-3 with 5 of his 9 wins coming by decision. Surprisingly to many, our model favours Magny in this match-up. As a 3.29 dog, placing a bet on him is a no brainer. To break even on this bet, we would only have to win just over 30% of the time. In our opinion, this fight is very close and Magny should be able to eek out a decision at least 40-50% of the time. Tim Means is a very one dimensional fighter. When he is able to pick apart his opponent on the feet, he wins. If his opponent is able to avoid damage on the feet and land some takedowns, he loses. Magny has not looked awful on the feet in the past, but has also shown an ability to get fights to the ground with an average of 2.18 takedowns per fight and a takedown accuracy of 46%. On the feet, we expect this fight to be a lot closer than most people expect. If it goes to the ground though, expect Magny to be on top and expect him to be able to hold Means down. We placed a 2 unit bet on Neil Magny at 3.29 at Sportbet.com.
The remaining two main card fights are relatively straight forward as we see Soa Palelei defeating Ruan Potts via first round TKO and Louis Smolka earning a decision win against Chris Cariaso. We’re not confident enough on either pick to justify a bet as of now. Don’t forget to follow us on Twitter and Facebook for all the latest. By the way, if you haven’t checked out Reed Kuhn’s Fightnomics it is a must read for any UFC fan, or anyone interested in betting on UFC fights.