UFC Fight Night 50 Fight Breakdown: Justin Scoggins vs. John Moraga

Justin-Scoggins The opening main card bout at UFC Fight Night 50 is a three-round flyweight bout between Justin Scoggins and John Moraga. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Scoggins is a -235 favorite (bet $235 to win $100) while Moraga is a +195 underdog (bet $100 to win $195). MMA linesetter Nick Kalikas opened Scoggins at -250 and Moraga at +190, and the line has pretty much stayed steady but with a bit more dog money coming on on Moraga. This is a pretty competitive fight but I lean towards Scoggins and believe he should be the rightful favorite heading into this fight. Here’s why. Scoggins (9-1) is one of the top prospects in the flyweight division. Just 22 years old, Scoggins is 2-1 in the UFC with wins over Richie Vaculik (UD) and Will Campuzano (UD) and a loss to Dustin Ortiz (SD). Although the loss to Ortiz snapped his unbeaten streak, many people thought Scoggins should have got the nod there and so he hasn’t lost too much momentum coming off of it, especially since the UFC saw it fit to reward him with at top opponent in Moraga despite the loss. Scoggins lost that fight because he left it close enough the judges could blow it, and I expect him to really try and make a statement against Moraga. Armed with a diverse striking attack and excellent grappling skills, Scoggins could be a future flyweight champion. But he needs to start showing the striking that got him into the UFC, and I have a feeling he will against Moraga in a fight that is destined for the “Fight of the Night” award at UFC Fight Night 50. Moraga (14-3) is one of the top flyweight contenders. The 30-year-old American is 3-0 in the Octagon with wins over Dustin Ortiz (SD), Chris Cariaso (SUB) and Ulysses Gomez (KO). He has solid offensive wrestling skills as well as submissions and knockout power. However, he has mediocre takedown defence and it cost him in his loss to Demetrious Johnson for the title. He also showed in the fight against Dodson that while he is tough, he definitely has holes in his striking defence that a better striker can capitalize on. I respect Moraga and rank him in the top 10, but Scoggins is on the come-up and Moraga looks to be on the decline, and I fully agree with the betting line the way it is. Moraga is a game fighter but Scoggins holds numerous advantages in this fight. He has shown his wrestling is solid enough to stop Moraga’s takedowns and on the feet there’s no doubt Scoggins is the better striker. He hasn’t really shown how good his standup skills are yet in the UFC as he’s instead shown off his grappling, but this is a matchup tailor-made for Scoggins to show off his kicking skills and I expect him to put on a show. You can’t count out a bad judges’ call if the fight goes the distance, but Scoggins is the better fighter and should win this fight. At -235, I actually feel like Scoggins could be included in a parlay as I really do see him winning and he’s one of my more confident picks on the card. Let’s just hope the judges don’t blow it if it goes the distance.

Written by Adam Martin.

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