UFC 165 Sneak Peak: Costa Philippou (-190) vs. Francis Carmont (+165)

costa-philippou One of five fights scheduled for the UFC 165 main card next weekend is an intriguing middleweight matchup between Costa Philippou and Francis Carmont. Philippou has won five-straight fights while Carmont is on a 10-fight winning streak, which means the winner of this fight is primed to jump into the title picture with a decisive victory. The current betting line at Several Bookmakers sees Philippou as a -190 favorite (bet $190 to win $100) and Carmont a +165 (bet $100 to win $165) underdog. MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened Philippou at -175 and Carmont at +135, meaning the early public support has come in on the Cypriot. I’m a huge fan of Philippou both as a fighter and as a person, but I have a feeling the public may be ‘caught speeding’ here by betting on him against Carmont. Here’s why. Although Carmont’s last two victories were controversial decision wins over Tom Lawlor and Lorenz Larkin, the important thing to take away from those fights is that he got the wins. Obviously, he’s doing something right in the judges’ eyes, so even though he record over his last two fights could be 0-2, the fact of the matter is it reads 2-0 and that’s a huge concern when betting against him. Based on what I’ve seen from Carmont, he’s working a smart gameplan of keeping competitive for the first four minutes of a round before he sneaks in a takedown in the last minute to steal rounds, a la Phil Davis vs. Lyoto Machida. We all know that in close rounds the judges favor guys who get takedowns — and they especially favor the fighter who ends up in top position at the end of a round — and since we all know that’s what Carmont’s gameplan is, betting against him just doesn’t seem like a good idea, at least not until he is exposed more. N0w, Philippou is an interesting matchup for Carmont because he does have very solid takedown defence and will likely be able to stuff the majority of Carmont’s takedown attempts. But if this is going to be a fight where Carmont shoves Philippou against the cage the whole time, he may be able to eventually wear “Costa” down and get a takedown in the latter stages of the rounds, therefore sealing a 10-9 Carmont scorecard in the judges’ eyes. I’m assuming the public is betting on Philippou because, on paper, he should be the superior striker in this fight based on his crisp boxing and decent power, but Carmont is very long on the feet and the way he switches stances makes him harder to hit with punches, although he can get hit by leg kicks. Carmont is also very big and strong for the division so although Philippou is a hoss himself, he won’t be the stronger man in this fight like when he took on Court McGee and Jared Hamman. And, for that matter, Tim Boetsch, who he was losing to until a cut on Boetsch’s face made it impossible for him to see and Philippou took over. I know Philippou at -190 might seem like a good bet, but I really think this is a fight where it’s dog or pass and, if the line continues to get higher, I may end up even putting a little bit of cash on Carmont myself.

Written by Adam Martin.

Leave a Reply

UFC 165 Bet: Dustin Kimura (-180) vs Mitch Gagnon (+140)

UFC 165 Bet: Ivan Menjivar (-165) vs Wilson Reis (+155)