MMA Odds and Ends for Thursday: Jones vs. Gustafsson Set As UFC 165 Main Event

Alexander Gustafsson The UFC today announced that light heavyweight champion Jon Jones’ next opponent will indeed be Alexander Gustafsson, and the two will meet in the main event of UFC 165, which takes place September 21 at Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. This is an intriguing matchup but as much as I want to say it will be a competitive fight, it won’t be. Jones is a better fighter in every facet of the game and I see him winning the fight inside the distance, likely via submission or TKO (ground and pound) as he’ll probably look to plant Gustafsson on his back and go to work there. Although Gustafsson is a solid fighter on the ground, he was submitted by Phil Davis and there’s no doubt in my mind Jones is a better submission fighter than Davis is and therefore the tapout is his most likely path to victory. The betting line hasn’t been released for this fight yet but if I had to guess I’d say Jones opens around -700 with the comeback on Gustafsson around +500. At that price, I’d say Jones will be worthy parlay fodder with one or two other fighters on the card, but I would much prefer recommending a bet on Jones inside the distance as it will likely be half the moneyline. Expect more fights to be announced for UFC 165 in the coming weeks, with Canadian fighters such as Mike Ricci, Chris Clements and Claude Patrick expected to be a part of the card in Toronto, which will see Jones as a headliner for the third time in the last two years. Melendez vs. Sanchez Agreed To For Future Event Lightweight contenders Gilbert Melendez and Diego Sanchez have agreed to future bout in 2013, according to Melendez’ Twitter account. The event the two will meet at hasn’t been stated yet, but expect that information to come in the next few weeks. This is an excellent fight and it should be one of the most exciting fights of 2013. Although many believe that Melendez should have got the nod over Benson Henderson and should be the UFC lightweight champion right now, the fact is the judges jobbed him and now he has to work his way up the ladder, even if it’s totally unfair. I think Melendez should open up at -300 with the comeback on Sanchez being +250. At those odds, I really do like putting Melendez into parlays because, even though this should be a fairly competitive fight, I do think it will be Melendez outlanding Sanchez on the feet and busting up Sanchez’ face, similar to his fight with Martin Kampmann. In that sense, it’s a little scary to bet on Melendez just because we do know that the judges love Sanchez’ style and don’t like Melendez’ as much, but still, Melendez should win all three rounds of this fight and therefore I’ll have to recommend playing him.

Written by Adam Martin.

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