UFC 168 Fight Breakdown: Robbie Peralta (-185) vs. Estevan Payan (+160)

Robbie Peralta The first Facebook fight of the night at UFC 168 is a fun featherweight fight between Robbie “Problems” Peralta and Estevan “El Terrible” Payan. The current betting line for the fight at Several Bookmakers sees Peralta as a -185 betting favorite (bet $185 to win $100), while is Payan is a +160 a underdog (bet $100 to win $160). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened up Peralta at -260 and Payan at +180, meaning so far the betting public has come in on the underdog Payan. I disagree with the early action on Payan as I am picking Peralta to defeat him and get back in the win column. Here’s why. Peralta (16-4, 1 NC) was moving fast up the featherweight rankings but in his last fight at UFC on FUEL TV 9 against Akira Corassani, he laid and egg and lost as a big favorite. After that fight, Peralta was suspended after testing positive for marijuana, and in interviews Peralta admitted he had been dealing with some personal problems going into that match. And prior to that fight with Corassani, he had been riding a 10-fight unbeaten streak. So I think we should give him a pass for that stinker of a performance, because overall he’s looked solid in the UFC and is 2-1, 1 NC overall in the promotion. The 27-year-old is an excellent striker with excellent power and good takedown defence and if he can win keep the fight with Payan standing, he should win this fight pretty handily by being the more effective striker. Payan (14-4, 1 NC) made his UFC debut at UFC 160 and was absolutely obliterated by Jeremy Stephens in one of the most bloody beatings of the year in mixed martial arts. It was a disappointing performance for the 31-year-old, who had been riding an eight-fight unbeaten streak heading into the fight with Stephens. Still, he looked absolutely awful against Stephens, showing zero striking defence and zero takedown defence, and it made me wonder if he’s truly a UFC calibre fighter. He’s a good striker and definitely a tough guy, but I don’t think he’s in Peralta’s class and I see Payan losing this fight at UFC 168. I see Peralta as the superior striker and superior mixed martial artist in this fight, and I believe he will do enough on the feet to win a clear decision, if not finish Payan with a knockout. I just think everyone is down on him after the Corassani fight, but remember, everyone has a bad day at work, and that’s what I think happened to him this past April in Sweden. I capped Peralta at -300 for this fight, so I see good value in him at -185. I would strongly consider putting him in a two-team parlay with another fighter on the card to lower the juice you’ll pay, as I definitely think Peralta defeats Payan to get back in the win column. As for props, nothing stands out to me here.

Written by Adam Martin.

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