UFC 157 Betting Odds Breakdown: Bantamweights Urijah Faber (-400) vs. Ivan Menjivar (+300)

Urijah FaberUFC 157: February 23, 2012 Honda Center in Anaheim, California UFC Bantamweight Contender Urijah Faber (-400) Profile: “The California Kid” Urijah Faber (26-6) has a long and storied career as one of the forefathers of the featherweight division. The longtime face of the WEC has made a mostly successful transition to the UFC’s bantamweight division well, defeating Eddie Wineland in his UFC debut at UFC 128 before losing his hyped rematch with Dominick Cruz at UFC 132.  However, the 33-year-old MMA veteran rebounded by quickly taking out former WEC bantamweight champion Brian Bowles at UFC 139 with his oft-used guillotine choke. Faber went on to coach opposite of Cruz on The Ultimate Fighter and was expected to meet him for the third time at UFC 148, but Cruz tore his ACL and temporarily left him without an opponent. He ended up fighting rising star Renan Barao for the interim title instead and was dominated in losing a unanimous decision. UFC Bantamweight Contender Ivan Menjivar (+300) Profile: Ivan Menjivar (25-9) has been on a tear for the most part since his single unsuccessful fight in the WEC. The 30-year-old Salvadorian bantamweight is 4-1 in his five UFC fights, splitting his last two bouts against Mike Easton (unanimous decision loss at UFC 148) and Azamat Gashimov (first-round submission win at UFC 154). Previously, he had defeated Charlie Valencia at UFC 129 via TKO (elbows and punches) and Nick Pace by UD at UFC 133 before earning Submission of the Night honors against John Albert at UFC on FUEL TV 1. Mejivar is a solid athlete who has fought all the way up at welterweight and remains in the Top 15 of the MMAOB MMA bantamweight rankings. He has a brown belt in BJJ and should be tough to handle anywhere. Opening UFC 157 Odds Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas made Faber a big -400 favorite (bet $400 to win $100) while Menjivar opened as a +300 underdog (bet $100 to win $300) at Several Bookmakers sportsbook. This is an important bout for both fighters, who are each looking to put themselves into contention for an eventual shot at the bantamweight title. Cruz is expected to face Barao if he is healthy enough later this year, but then who’s on deck to meet the winner? Faber was training to fight Cruz during TUF 15 when both were coaches, and he was no match for Barao. Menjivar was originally scheduled to fight Barao at UFC 148 before he was pulled in favor of Faber, and he now gets his opportunity to prove himself and move into the title mix.  Five of his last six losses have gone to the judges, and the other loss during that stretch for Menjivar was against Faber in 2006 when he was disqualified for an illegal kick. This rematch allows him to show he is a legit contender for the belt, and Faber would be wise not to underestimate him in this spot.

Written by MMA OddsBreaker

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