One of the preliminary bouts at UFC Fight Night 36 is a bantamweight contest between Yuri “Marajo” Alcantara and Wilson Reis. The current betting line for the fight at Several Bookmakers lists Alcantara as a -250 betting favorite (bet $250 to win $100) while Reis is a +210 underdog (bet $100 to win $210). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened up Alcantara at -215 and Reis at +165, meaning so far the betting public likes the favorite Alcantara to get the win. I believe this fight may be closer than the odds indicate, but I will still be picking Alcantara to get the win. Here’s why. Alcantara (28-5, 1 NC) is one of the largest bantamweights in the UFC, measuring in at 5’6″ and blessed with a 71″ reach. The 33-year-old Brazilian is a violent finisher, and he owns 12 career wins each by way of submission and knockout. In the UFC, Alcantara is 3-2 with one no contest. He holds wins over Felipe Arantes, Michihiro Omigawa, and Iliarde Santos. He also owns notable career victories over Ricardo Lamas, Francisco Trinaldo, and Viscardi Andrade. In Alcantara’s last fight against Urijah Faber, he was dominating the early portion before fading and then getting dominated by Faber’s superior wrestling. He was also outwrestled by Hacran Dias in his other UFC loss. Although Alcantara is big at 135, he cuts a lot of weight to make the divisional limit and if he doesn’t get the early finish in his fights, he absolutely runs the risk of fading down the stretch and losing a decision. And Reis is the perfect fighter who can do that to him. Reis (17-4) made it to the UFC last year and picked up an impressive decision win over Ivan Menjivar to jump into the top 15 of the UFC bantamweight division.The 29-year-old Brazilian flamed out in Bellator, but he’s won five-straight fights since being cut from the promotion and he’s made it all the way to the big show. In my opinion, Reis was cut too soon from Bellator — his losses were to Patricio Pitbull, Eduardo Dantas, and Joe Soto — and he’s proving now in the UFC that he still has potential to be a solid bantamweight fighter. And don’t forget this is a guy who has notable career wins over Zach Makovsky, Bryan Caraway, and Henry Martinez. Reis is a solid grappler, and if he can utilize his wrestling against Alcantara, he is a live dog. I think that Alcantara should be able to use his superior size in the cage to control Reis early on and he should be able to get the finish via strikes or submission. However, if Alcantara doesn’t get the finish in round one, we could be looking at a live betting situation in round two for the underdog Reis, who could steal the final two rounds on the scorecards with takedowns if Alcantara’s gas tank runs out after the first frame. At -250, I believe this is is a pass on Alcantara, as much as I like the guy. At this point, I’m wondering if there’s any value on Reis, but even at +210 I’m not ready to play him. I’d consider him if he hit +250 or thereabouts, however, and I’m also considering the decision prop at +470. Overall, though, I just don’t feel comfortable laying this sort of juice on Alcantara, who isn’t a young fighter by any means. I’m just going to back off this one and watch it as a fan.