MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Numerous New UFC Matches Announced

Rafael Natal The UFC today announced a number of new matches for upcoming fight cards, many of which the fans will find quite exciting. The UFC on FOX Sports 1 3 card today got a ton of new matchups announced for it. They are:

  • Rafael “Sapo” Natal vs. Tor Troeng
  • Johnny Bedford vs. Hugo Viana
  • Godofredo Pepey vs. Sam Sicilia
  • Marcos Vinicius vs. Ali Bagautinov

All four of these fights feature a Brazilian vs. foreigner, a common theme when the UFC goes to Brazil. As such, I’d have to give the edge to all the Brazilians in these fights, but depending on how the lines open there could be some value on Sicilia and Bagautinov. As well, UFC 166 grew by one fight today with the announcement of a lightweight bout between Tony Ferguson and Mike Rio, a matchup that was confirmed by This is an intriguing matchup between a solid striker in Ferguson and a solid ground fighter in Rio, but with both men coming into the fight off of losses I’d imagine the loser gets cut. The fight should be pretty close but I’d guess Ferguson opens as a favorite at around the -150 mark with the comeback on Rio about +120 or so. And finally, it’s not a fight announcement but rather a fight scratch, as an injury to Josh Koscheck has taken him out of his upcoming UFC 163 bout against Demian Maia. With the fight just a few weeks away and not many top contenders available, the UFC decided to take Maia off the card completely. It’s disappointing news because I was really looking forward to seeing what Maia could do to Koscheck, but to be honest the fight never made much sense in the first place and hopefully Maia gets a top contender for his next fight. Emerson Out, Downing vs. Pitbull Now On Tap In Bellator Bellator today announced that Rob Emerson is injured and out of his upcoming Bellator 97 matchup against Patircio “Pitbull” Freire and in his place will step Jared Downing, who takes the fight on very short notice as the event is just a few weeks out. This “Pitbull” vs. Downing matchup is extremely intriguing and I’m definitely looking forward to seeing Downing get his shot in Bellator. I was one of the people who thought the judges robbed Downing of a draw against Lance Palamer at the last RFA event, but thankfully a top organization like Bellator saw his talent and picked him up. Still, this is a tough fight to take against “Pitbull” on short notice. I’m expecting Freire to open up around -350 with the comeback on Downing being about +250 or so, and at that price I’d probably just pass on a bet although I do favor Freire to win the fight.

Written by Adam Martin.

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