UFC 177 Opening Odds Breakdown: Demetrious Johnson vs. Chris Cariaso

MMA: UFC 174-Johnson vs Bagautinov UFC 177: DILLASHAW VS. BARAO 2 Date: August 30, 2014 Location: Sacramento, California Venue: Sleep Train Arena Broadcast: PPV UFC Flyweight Champion Demetrious Johnson (-1425) Since losing to bantamweight champion Dominick Cruz in October, 2011, Demetrious “Mighty Mouse” Johnson (20-2-1) has taken over the UFC’s flyweight division with relative ease. He won the UFC’s four-man flyweight tournament with wins over Ian McCall and Joseph Benavidez to become the first-ever 125lb champ, then he defeated John Doson via decision in his first title defence. He then followed that up with a submission win over John Moraga to once again defend the belt, and then at UFC on FOX 9 he knocked out Benavidez in their rematch to cement his place as the No. 1 flyweight fighter on the entire planet. He then followed that up with a decision win over Ali Bagautinov to continue moving up the P4P ranks. Now, the UFC has given him the task of dispatching Chris Cariaso, and it’s a fight that he should win in dominant fashion, which is why he opens as a massive favorite. UFC Flyweight Contender Chris Cariaso (+675) One of the top strikers in the UFC flyweight division, Chris Cariaso (17-5) is deserving of his top 10 ranking. He is 7-3 overall in the UFC (including a win over Takeya Mizugaki at bantamweight) and 4-2 since dropping to flyweight with wins over Louis Smolka, Danny Martinez, Iliarde Santos and Josh Ferguson. He is a muay Thai fighter with brutal leg kicks to the body and he also has solid wrestling. He has always been undersized, even for flyweight, but he makes up for it with a big heart. Now that he has paid his dues in the sport, the UFC is giving him the chance to fight for the title and he will take on Demetrious Johnson for the UFC flyweight championship at UFC 177. Opening UFC 177 Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas made Johnson a -1425 favorite (bet $1425 to win $100) while Cariaso opened as a +675 underdog (bet $100 to win $675) at Several Bookmakers. This fight came out of nowhere but the UFC needed a replacement for John Dodson, who is out for a year with an injury, and they picked Cariaso, who has won three-straight fights. Cariaso is a solid fighter no doubt about it, but Johnson is elite and this is a blowout mismatch on paper. Although Cariaso likely has the better striking, it probably won’t even matter as Johnson’s wrestling will likely prove to be too powerful and the majority of this fight will likely take place on the mat. If Cariaso can somehow stop the takedowns and keep it on the feet he certainly has a chance, but it’s much more likely it will go to the ground where Johnson has a huge edge, and that’s why he’s a gigantic favorite entering the matchup.

Written by Adam Martin.

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