UFC 205 Play: Tyron Woodley (+170) vs Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (-200)

Stephen ThompsonUFC 205 Date: November 12, 2016 Arena: Madison Square Garden City: New York City, NY Welterweight title bout: Tyron Woodley (+170) vs Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (-200) Fight Breakdown: The co-main event for UFC 200 at Madison Square Garden in New York City will be for the UFC welterweight title, as the champion Tyron Woodley will look to make his first title defense against No. 1 contender and challenger Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson. Woodley is a +170 ($100 to win $170) betting underdog heading into the contest and “Wonderboy” is the favorite to win at -200 ($200 to win 100) at Several Bookmakers. Tyron Woodley (16-3 MMA, 6-2 UFC) is coming off a first-round knockout of Robbie Lawler to become to UFC welterweight champion, and he will be looking to make his first title defense this Saturday night against the #1 contender and challenger in Thompson. Riding a three-fight winning streak heading into this bout, he will be aiming to make it four in a row by taking out the Karatedo. An NCAA Division I wrestler from the University of Missouri, Woodley is very talented on the mat. He has great takedowns and is explosive with them. He a has good double-leg takedown, works a great body-lock and has a nice inside trip. His defensive grappling is also solid, as he has phenomenal takedown defense and good submission defense. “T-Wood” has evolved into a solid striker, and he is very explosive on the feet. He is incredibly powerful and packs serious heat behind every strike. Every punch he throws is powerful, as is every leg kick. Woodley uses his hands well from a distance, given he is not at a reach disadvantage, but he is also great at dirty boxing from close distance. He is very strong inside the clinch, from which position he loves to employ his devastating knees. His conditioning is not the best, but it is very good considering his size, muscle tone and general body frame. I have concerns about his cardio for a 25-minute fight, so I think it is something to keep an eye on in this contest. Stephen “Wonderboy” Thompson (13-1 MMA, 8-1 UFC) is coming off a unanimous-decision victory over Rory MacDonald and now enjoys an impressive seven-fight winning streak inside the Octagon that includes four finishes. He will be looking to make that eight straight while simultaneously capturing the UFC welterweight title. The South Carolina native is a phenomenal striker and arguably the best in the UFC’s 170-pound division. He comes from a Karate background and because of that tends to keep his hands down at his waist and his chin high and exposed. Despite that, he has never been finished in his professional mixed martial arts career. In fact, his lone career defeat came via unanimous decision against Matt Brown in his second UFC appearance. That was a very strange fight because both fighters, who are known for their cardio, gassed terribly early on in the fight and battled it out until the final bell. Thompson noted that he had an uncanny experience of fatigue setting in and losing power in his legs right after throwing his first kick early in the first round of action. Ultimately, he blamed it on overtraining and started preparing for future fights differently. Since then, he has displayed great cardio, and I have no doubt he will be prepared for a full five rounds of action against the champ, if necessary. Gabe’s Thoughts: KARATEDO!! In short, I think Thompson should be a 4-to-1 betting favorite heading into this contest, so I really like him at his current offering price of 2-to-1. Gabe’s Call: “Wonderboy” by T/KO (strikes, 1:41 round 1) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Thompson (-200) 10u to win 5u

Written by Gabe Killian

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