UFC 166 Sneak Peek: John Dodson (-330) vs. Darrell Montague (+270)

John Dodson The opening fight of the UFC 166 card is a flyweight bout between John Dodson and Darrell Montague, a battle between two of the top 10 flyweights in the world. The current betting line for the bout at Several Bookmakers lists Dodson as a -330 favorite (bet $330 to win $100), while Montague is a +270 underdog (bet $100 to win $270). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened up Dodson at -280 and Montague at +200, which means the public is backing Dodson early on. And it’s really hard to disagree with them, as I am also picking Dodson to win this fight. Here’s why. Dodson (14-6), in my opinion, is the hardest pound-for-pound puncher in the sport. Yes, I know that’s a very bold statement, but I firmly believe it’s true. After all, this guy KOed TJ Dillashaw to win The Ultimate Fighter (TUF) at 135 pounds, and since dropping down to 125 he’s TKOed Jussier Formiga and even dropped the current champion Demetrious Johnson twice in their fight. It’s a testament to Johnson’s iron chin and toughness that he wasn’t finished, because if Dodson connected with those same shots on most other fighters in the division, they would go down. And I truly believe that if Dodson lands those same strikes on Montague, he’ll be able to pick up his third T/KO win in the UFC, and that’s why I think it’s really hard to bet on Montague in this spot even though I think he’s a super talented fighter as well. I don’t know why it took the UFC so long to ink Montague (13-2), but they finally did and I’m excited to see him fight in the Octagon. A veteran of the California regional circuit, Montague is the former Tachi Palace Fights flyweight champion, having defeated former UFC fighter Ulysses Gomez to win that belt. Even though he wound up losing it to Ian McCall in his very next fight, everyone knows McCall is one of the top-five flyweights in the world so that loss really isn’t that bad. And he’s won four-straight fights since then to bounce back from it. Montague’s only other career loss, by the way, came to Robbie Peralta, who is one of the hardest hitters in the UFC featherweight division. So both of his defeats came to studs, while if you look at Dodson’s record he has actually lost to a number of no-name fighters, although many of those losses came earlier in his career. Still, he’s not invincible. Although I believe Montague is a well-rounded fighter and he can win fights in the UFC flyweight division, I’m extremely high on Dodson and I see him winning this fight by T/KO. As far as a bet goes, I’m leaning towards betting the UNDER 2.5 rounds total, which currently sits at +155. That’s the same price as Dodson wins inside the distance, so I think it’s better value since a surprise Montague finish would also cash. And I’m someone who likes to be safe rather than sorry.

Written by Adam Martin.

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