UFC 170 Fight Breakdown: Daniel Cormier (-1300) vs. Patrick Cummins (+850)

Strikeforce: Cormier vs. Monson The co-main event of UFC 170 is a three-round light heavyweight bout between Daniel “DC” Cormier and Patrick “Durkin” Cummins. The current betting line for the fight at Several Bookmakers lists Cormier as a massive -1300 betting favorite (bet $1300 to win $100) while Cummins is a +850 underdog (bet $100 to win $850). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas originally opened up Cormier at -1125 and Cummins at +575, meaning there has been some early action on the favorite Cormier. I agree with the line movement as I’m also picking Cormier to win this fight. Here’s why: Cormier (13-0) won the Strikeforce Heavyweight Grand Prix with wins over Josh Barnett, Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and Jeff Monson. He entered the UFC last year and picked up two decision wins over Frank Mir and Roy Nelson to cement his place as the No. 3 heavyweight in the world behind his teammate, UFC heavyweight champion Cain Velasquez, and former champ Junior dos Santos, but he decided that 205 was a better weight class for him and this weekend at UFC 170 he’ll make his light heavyweight debut. The 34-year-old, who is one of the best wrestlers on the entire UFC roster, was originally set to fight former light heavyweight champion Rashad Evans, but an injury to Evans left Cormier without an opponent. That is, until Cummins stepped up on short notice to take the fight against him. Although the UFC and some media types are trying to hype this fight up as competitive, I think it will be a blowout and the betting line reflects it. Cormier has the edges in wrestling, striking, and in fight experience, and if he somehow finds a way to lose this fight it would go down as one of the biggest upsets in MMA history. And considering that a title shot could be on the line for DC should he win, I just can’t see him losing. Cummins (4-0) is making his UFC debut on very short notice, having less than two weeks to prepare for a fight against one of the top fighters in the sport in Cormier. The 32-year-old Cummins has solid wrestling and is a finisher, but it’s really hard to say how good he is considering his level of opposition has been about as poor as one can get. I know that Cummins is being hyped up by the UFC as a solid light heavyweight, but if he was so good he would have already been on the roster, not working in a coffee shop last week. There is no doubt in my mind that Cummins has bitten off more than he can chew here, and although I respect him for taking the fight against Cormier when no one else would, I would be completely shocked if he was able to pull off the upset. Cormier has been hugely disappointing in his UFC tenure so far, as he wasn’t able to finish Mir or Nelson and never even seemed like he wanted to. To be fair to “DC,” though, those are two of the top 15 heavyweights in the world. Cummins, on the other hand, barely cracks the top 50 at light heavyweight. Cormier really should be able to stuff Cummins’ takedown attempts, keep this fight standing, and knock “Durkin’s” block off, but based on how he’s fought in the UFC so far, don’t be surprised if he fence clinches his way to a decision. At -1200, I don’t see any value in Cormier although I do think the line is about accurate. Unlike some other media types, I am not giving Cummins anything more than a puncher’s chance in this fight, so I don’t think he’d be worth a flier unless he hit +1000. Even at the price, though, I’d still pass on “Durkin” because I don’t think he’ll win the fight. If you want to put Cormier in a parlay, I can’t blame you, but personally I don’t think the risk is worth the reward. I know the prop on Cormier ITD at -135 is tempting as he really should get a finish here, but personally I’m going to lay off because I don’t trust him with finishing his opponents at this point.

Written by Adam Martin.

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