UFC 166 Bet: Cain Velasquez (-190) vs Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos (+165)

Cain VelasquezUFC 166 Date: Octber 19, 2013 Arena: Toyota Center City: Houston TX Heavyweight title bout: Cain Velasquez (-190) vs Junior “Cigano” Dos Santos (+165) Fight Breakdown: The main event for UFC 166 will be a rubber match between two of the baddest men in the world, when Champion Cain Velasquez defends his title against the challenger, Junior “Cigan” Dos Santos. Velasquez is the favorite at -190 ($190 to win $100), while Dos Santos is the underdog at +165 ($100 to win $165) at 5Dimes Sportsbooks. CAIN VELASQUEZ (12-1 MMA, 10-1 UFC) is coming off three wins in a row, that includes a unanimous decision victory over current opponent Junior Dos Sants sandwiched between two first round TKO victories over Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. Before the current win streak, the only setback in his professional mixed martial arts career came when he lost his heavyweight title to, again, Dos Santos, in their initial meeting at UFC on FOX 1. Dos Santos put Velasquez out with a right hand behind the ear at only one minute in the very first round. In the rematch at UFC 155, Velasquez took control of the fight from the first frame of action and dominated “Cigano” for all five rounds, earning lopsided 50-45, 50-43-, and 50-44 scores on judges’ scorecards. Velasquez is an extremely talented wrestler who trains out of the American Kickboxing Academy in San Jose, C.A. He is a good friend and training partner of fellow heavyweight and soon to be light heavyweight, Daniel Cormier, who is competing on the same card. Velasquez has excellent cardio; in fact, he has the best conditioning out of everybody in the UFC’s heavyweight division, or all of MMA, for that matter. As Joe Rogan puts it, “he is a cardio freak.” The 31-year old Mexican has very good boxing skills and his kickboxing is not bad, either. He moves around well and is very fast, especially for a heavyweight. Despite the knockout to Dos Santos, Velasquez has always displayed a great chin throughout his career. He considers that lone loss to be a fluke, and is set out to prove it come Saturday night. JUNIOR “CIGANO” DOS SANTOS (16-2 MMA, 10-1 UFC) made a big splash in the UFC in his promotional debut as a 5-to-1 underdog, where he scored a very impressive highlight reel knockout over Fabricio Werdum. He added another eight to his string of UFC wins, making it him 9-0, including six finishes, one of them being a first round knockout over current opponent Velasquez to capture the title. His undefeated Octagon streak and title reign came to an end when Velasquez bested him en route to a lopsided unanimous decision in their rematch. In the upcoming rubber match, “Cigano” is looking to produce results similar to that of their first meeting, as he plans to knock Velasquez out. Granted, he always looks to knock his opponents out, but this time, he knows it’s his only shot, and the only thing he can depend on. In the rematch, there was the assumption that he could stuff Velasquez’s takedowns and the possibility that, if taken down, his ground-game and Brazilian jiu-jitsu would be good enough to make the bout competitive on the mat. That wasn’t the case, as Velasquez’s wrestling and top control proved too dominant. That fight was really the first time I can recall seeing Dos Santos on the mat, so I can’t speak much for his jiu-jitsu. I can’t say it isn’t good, because even if it’s great, you likely can’t tell against an athlete and grappler like Velasquez. On the feet, Dos Santos is quite dominant. He is a talented boxer who possesses serious power and has a right hand that can put anybody away, even someone with an incredible chin, as that of Velasquez. “Cigano” bounced back from the Velasquez defeat with a third round head kick knockout victory over another fighter with an incredible chin in Mark Hunt. The late KO proved that not only can he finish opponents early in fights, but he can do so in the tail ends of them, as well. Fight Prediction: In the first fight, Velasquez was the favorite and lost. In the rematch, Dos Santos was the favorite and lost. In the rubbermatch, Velasquez is again the favorite, but I think the streak of the favorite losing between these two ends with this fight. In the rematch, I was on Cain Velasquez by Decision +960 and that cashed famously. I expect the rubbermatch to play out more like the rematch than their initial match-up. However, this time around, I think Velasquez has a much better chance of earning TKO stoppage, especially with the news of Dos Santos having recently received a cut in training. That aside, I think the most likely outcome for this bout is Velasquez by Decision, but I don’t love it as much as I did last time, so I will be passing on the option for a prop. Gabe’s Pick: Cain Velasquez by Unanimous Decision (49-46, 49-46, 49-46) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Fight Starts Round 2 -282

Written by Gabe Killian

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