UFC Fight Night 128: Barboza vs. Lee
Date: April 21
Arena: Boardwalk Hall
City: Atlantic City, NJ
The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) is back in Atlantic City, NJ with UFC Fight Night 128: Barboza vs. Lee. If you’re considering wagering on this fight card, there are many good plays to put your money down on. These, however, are fights I think you should skip at the sportsbook on Saturday night.
Here are my plays…
Lightweight bout: Kevin Lee (-145) vs. Edson Barboza (+125)
Gabe’s Thoughts: I see this fight playing out two ways; either Barboza knocks Lee out, or Lee manages to take the fight to the mat and defeat Barboza by either rear naked choke submission or ground and pound TKO. I see both scenarios playing out within the first two rounds, so I see value in the Total of Under 2.5 rounds at +125. I have a hard time confidently picking either fighter to get his hand raised in this contest, but I do feel confident that the winner will be adding a highlight to his reel in Atlantic City.
Gabe’s Call: Barboza by T/KO (strikes, 1:35 round 1)
Gabe’s Recommended Play: Under 2.5 rounds (+125)
Women’s Bantamweight bout: Aspen Ladd (-145) vs. Leslie Smith (+125)
Gabe’s Thoughts: Ladd is taking a step up in competition following a second round TKO win over Lina Lansberg in her Octagon debut. Smith enjoys an impressive two fight winning streak in the UFC heading into this one, which would arguably be her biggest UFC victory to date, if able to secure it. Smith will have the edge on the feet, but Ladd will have the edge on the mat, which is where I see the fight ending up. Both ladies own purple belts in Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu, but I think it is Ladd’s takedowns, top control and general superior wrestling that makes the difference. I would not be surprised to see her hand Smith her first career submission loss, but I think a TKO stoppage via ground and pound is more likely. I think this is a close fight, as the odds suggest, and it is one I could see Ladd finishing, but also one I could see Smith finishing. If Ladd is unable to get anything going, I could see Smith’s pressure adding up to where she eventually secured a second or third round TKO. The Total for Under 2.5 rounds is +240 here, and I think that line should be +160, so I think it holds enough value to pull the trigger on a play, though I would personally keep it on the smaller side, as both ladies are generally tough to put away.
Gabe’s Call: Ladd by T/KO (punches, 4:43 round 1) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Under 2.5 rounds (+240)
Editor’s note: This fight has been cancelled due to Ladd missing weight.