UFC 149 Opening Odds: Interim Bantamweight Title Urijah Faber (-115) vs. Renan Barao (-115)

Renan BaraoUFC 149: Wednesday, July 21, 2012 Scotiabank Saddledome in Calgary, Alberta, Canada UFC Bantamweight Contender Urijah Faber (-115) Profile: “The California Kid” Urijah Faber (26-5) 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, but Cruz tore his ACL and temporarily left him without an opponent. UFC president Dana White later announced fellow UFC bantamweight contender Renan Barao would get the opportunity to fight Faber for the interim title while Cruz recovers. UFC Bantamweight Contender Renan Barao (-115) Profile: The man with the longest unbeaten streak currently in MMA, Renan Barao (28-1-1) has forced the MMA world to take notice. Starting his career throughout the independent companies in Brazil such as Shooto, Barao has dominated his competition with 28 wins and 19 finishes with one No-Contest in his last 29 fights. He made his Zuffa debut at WEC 49 in June of 2010 and since then has defeated every man put in his way. The 25-year-old Brazilian went 2-0 in the WEC and is currently 3-0 in the UFC with impressive wins over Cole Escovedo (130), Brad Pickett (Fight of the Night at UFC 138) and Scott Jorgensen (UFC 143). Barao now hopes to take away the championship dreams of fellow UFC bantamweight contender Urijah Faber when they meet at UFC 149 for the interim title. Opening UFC 149 Odds Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened both Faber and Barao at-115 (bet $115 to win $100). The MMA odds have since seen Barao skyrocket as high as -200 with Faber worth as much as +170. There is a good reason why Faber was disappointed in the opponent UFC president Dana White chose for him as Cruz’s replacement. Barao could very well be better than Cruz, who Faber had a personal rivalry with on The Ultimate Fighter. Faber was not training to face Barao, and it will be very difficult for him to end a 29-fight unbeaten streak regardless of what could be his only advantage – experience. Barao’s 5-0 combined mark in the WEC and UFC may show that he has been involved in just one-third the amount of fights at that level as Faber (11-4). However, three of those bouts for Barao resulted in submissions, and nealry half of his fights overall have ended that way. Barao certainly has an aura around him that will continue to grow as he adds more wins to his streak. But he has never fought an opponent like Faber, who can show the whole world he is still one of the best in the world by winning the interim title. Note: This fight was originally scheduled for UFC 148.

Written by MMA OddsBreaker

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