MMA Odds and Ends for Monday: Cormier vs. Nelson Set For UFC 166

Daniel Cormier A battle between two of the best heavyweights in the world is about to go down this fall. The UFC today confirmed that a heavyweight matchup between Daniel Cormier and Roy Nelson has been booked for UFC 166, which is set to take place Oct. 19 at Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. The bout will serve as the co-main event of the evening, with the main event being the UFC heavyweight championship bout between title holder Cain Velasquez and No. 1 contender Junior dos Santos. The fight between Cormier and Nelson doesn’t make much sense as far as the rankings go but it’s a fight that both men wanted and it’s a fight that both men have received as the UFC has decided to reward Nelson for taking a fight against Stipe Miocic on short notice with a new, multi-fight contract and a matchup with a highly-ranked opponent in Cormier even though it makes more sense as far as the rankings go to do Miocic vs. Cormier. Still, the Nelson vs. Cormier fight should be a fun one and I expect a lot of trash talk between these two men in the leadup to the bout. As far as what I believe the opening line will be, I have Cormier capped at about -400 with the comeback on Nelson at +300. Now that’s not to say that Nelson can’t win this fight — he can beat any heavyweight in the UFC if he hits then with his giant overhand right — but I do believe Cormier will have a massive speed and cardio edge and unless he gets caught early on my a Nelson bomb, this is his fight to lose. I am very high on Cormier and I believe he has what it takes to win the UFC heavyweight title. That being said, I expect him to be overpriced in this fight and since I typically don’t like to lay juice on heavyweights (too many flukes happen in heavyweight matches), I’m probably going to pass on his moneyline and instead look for the Cormier Wins By Decision prop because I don’t see him finishing Nelson and we’ll likely be able to get the Cormier decision prop at a good price. Thiago Out, Gastelum Without Opponent For UFC on FOX Sports 1 2 Veteran Paulo Thiago is out of his UFC on FOX Sports 1 2 matchup against Kelvin Gastelum and the promotion is now actively searching for a replacement, according to a report from Globo. This is disappointing news because I was very high on Gastelum in this spot and would have bet the heck out of him against a fading Thiago. That being said, Gastelum likely could use a bit of an easier matchup in his first cut to welterweight, so perhaps the UFC can give him someone with a little less experience than Thiago so he can pick up an impressive win and get his confidence going again. Honestly, though, regardless of who the UFC matches Gastelum up with, I will likely be picking him to win the fight as I believe he’s a stud and is one of the top prospects in MMA today.

Written by Adam Martin.

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