UFC Fight Night 29 Sneak Peek: Erick Silva (-282) vs. Dong Hyun Kim (+240)

Kim Bahadurzada weigh-in The co-main event of the upcoming UFC Fight Night 29 card is a three-round welterweight match between Brazilian Erick Silva and South Korea’s Dong Hyun Kim. With both men on the rise at 170 pounds, expect the winner of this fight to be paired up with a fighter in the top 10 their next time out, meaning the stakes are high for both guys this fall in Brazil. The current betting line for the fight at Several Bookmakers┬ásees Silva as a -282 favorite (bet $282 to win $100) while Kim is a +240 dog (bet $100 to win $240). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened the fight at -175 Silva and +135 Kim, meaning the public is pouring the money on the Brazilian fighter, who will enjoy a key home-field advantage in this match. But while Silva should indeed get a boost from fighting in front of friends and family, I believe he is overpriced at nearly 3-to-1 and I think there is some value here on the dog Kim. Here’s why I’m leaning “Stun Gun” at the current odds. In Silva’s fight against Jon Fitch — his only “true” loss in the UFC — Fitch showed that the blueprint to defeating the young phenom is to take him down and control him with a grinding wrestling game on the ground. Although Silva’s BJJ game is dynamic and always a threat, he was not able to submit Fitch in that fight when he did get his chances and, against Kim, I don’t see him getting too many chances to sweep or submit if the humongous Kim is on top of him. In Kim’s last two victories, wins over Paulo Thiago and Siyar Bahadurzada, Kim absolutely owned his opponents with an incredibly heavy top game and strong ground and pound. Although Kim wasn’t able to get the stoppage in those fights, he showed that he has upped his ground game to an elite level in the UFC welterweight division. If in this fight he is able to use his judo and wrestling skills to out-grapple Silva and get the takedowns and control the top game, he can steal a decision in his opponent’s home country. That’s Kim’s clear path to victory, although I do feel as though he can hold his own in the striking department as he showed improved standup in his fight with Sean Pierson at UFC 141. Although many view Silva as a knockout artist, he’s actually more of a ground fighter. In saying that, I still give Silva an edge in the stand-up in this fight because of his creativity and explosive power, but I do believe many are under-selling Kim’s attributes, and that’s why you see the line this long. This is a tough fight to bet because Kim could very well get knocked out with a flying knee or triangled off his back, but I think at the current odds Kim clearly has value as I capped this fight much closer to where the odds opened. So at +240 I’d have to say Kim is the right bet to be made in this fight if one has to be made, although a pass may be the smartest play of any in this spot.

Written by Adam Martin.

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