UFC Fight Night 48 Play: Dong Hyun Kim (+155) vs Tyron Woodley (-175)

UFC-156UFC Fight Night 48 Date: August 23, 2014 Arena: The Venetian Macau’s CotaiArena City: Macau, China Welterweight bout: Dong Hyun Kim (+155) vs Tyron Woodley (-175) Fight Breakdown: UFC Fight Night 48 will be co-headlined by a welterweight contest between Dong Hyun Kim and Tyron Woodley, with Kim being the underdog at +155 ($100 to win $155) and Woodley being the betting favorite at -175 ($175 to win $100) at 5Dimes Sportsbooks. “Stun Gun” Dong Hyun Kim (19-2-1-1 NC MMA, 10-2-1 NC UFC) is coming off a very impressive third round spinning back elbow knockout victory over John Hathaway, making it four in a row for him inside the Octagon. The win followed back-to-back unanimous decision victories over Paulo Thiago and Siyar Bahadurzada, and another impressive third round knockout of Erick Silva, in come from behind fashion. Kim has looked more aggressive in recent bouts, having shown a real desire to finish his fights. Against Silva and Hathaway, it was clear that he was looking for the knockout. “Stun Gun” is a skilled striker with solid boxing skills but his bread and butter is his ground game, where he displays dominant top control and an effective ground and pound attack. With his judo base, he has very strong hips, thus is hard to take down and his defense is some of the best in the welterweight division. When Kim initiates a takedown and gets the fight to the mat, he positions himself well and does not get caught in submissions or leave room for reversals. His submission defense is excellent. Training out of Korean Top Team, I expect him to be ready for a hard three rounds of action, should the fight hit the judges’ scorecards. Tyron “T-Wood” Woodley (13-2 MMA, 3-2 UFC) is coming off a unanimous decision loss to Rory MacDonald at UFC 174 just over two months ago, and took this bout against “Stun Gun” on short notice when his training partner Hector Lombard fell out of action due to injury. Woodley froze up against MacDonald and had no answer for him, but in this immediate turnaround, I think he will be moving forward and looking to earn a finish that will get him back into a win column, and potentially back into the title picture, which is his ultimate goal. An NCAA Division I wrestler from Missouri University, Woodley is very talented on the mat. He has great takedowns and is explosive with them. He a good double-leg, works a great body-lock, and has a nice inside trip. His defensive grappling is also solid, as he has phenomenal takedown defense and good submission defense. “T-Wood” has evolved into a solid striker, and is very explosive on the feet. He is incredibly powerful and packs serious heat behind every strike. Every punch he throws is powerful, as is every leg kick. Woodley uses his hands well from a distance, given he is not at a reach disadvantage, but he is also great at dirty boxing from close distance. He is very strong inside the clinch, from which position he loves to employ his devastating knees. His conditioning is not the best, but it is very good considering his size, muscle tone, and general body frame. I would have concerns about his cardio if it was a five-round main event, but in a three round co-headliner, I think he will have enough in the tank for a full 15 minutes of action, should the fight go the distance. Gabe’s Thoughts: I feel both of these welterweights are going to enter the Octagon looking for the finish from the opening bell, and I think 2.5 rounds is enough time for one of them to put the other down and away. These are two fighters that have a history of going to decisions, but have recently turned into knockout artists. That combined with the fact that they are each in search of an impressive and dominant finish, I believe the under 2.5 rounds at +135 here offers great value. I’ll take Woodley for my pick, but I think this one goes either way. If I had to make a straight play, I would take the value with Kim, but I think this under is the better, safer play and offers the most value, so it will be the play I go with for this co-main event bout. Gabe’s Call: Woodley by TKO (strikes, 1:08 round 1) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Under 2.5 rounds (+145) 4u to win 5.8u

Written by Gabe Killian

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