UFC 182 Play: Evan Dunham (-525) vs Rodrigo Damm (+415)

rodrigo-damm-PNGUFC 182 Date: January 3, 2015 Arena: MGM Grand Garden Arena City: Las Vegas, NV Lightweight bout: Evan Dunham (-525) vs Rodrigo Damm (+415) Fight Breakdown: It’s “do or die” time in the UFC’s lightweight division on Saturday night, where 155 pounders Evan “3D” Dunham and Rodrigo Damm will look to snap their losing streaks and return to their winning ways. Dunham is a heavy favorite headed into this bout at -525 ($525 to win $100), with the Brazilian being the large betting underdog at +415 ($100 to win $415) at Several Bookmakerss. Evan “3D” Dunham (14-6 MMA, 7-6 UFC) last saw action five months ago at UFC Fight Night 45, where was knocked out by Edson Barboza in the very first round of action. Now on a three-fight losing streak, he certainly has his back against the wall headed into this scrap against the Brazilian. A talented southpaw, Dunham does a great job of mixing it up on the feet. He has decent footwork, counters well and puts together solid 1-2 combinations. He has a nice jab, as well as a nice double-jab, which he often likes to follow with a hard left. “3D” is an aggressive fighter who likes to move forward and looks to do damage. He works well from inside the clinch where he loves to implement his knees. He generally does an excellent job of utilizing both knees and elbows in his offensive striking attack. The 33-year old has solid boxing skills and has improved his kickboxing under the tutelage of Ray Sefo. He does not go for many high kicks, but does possess some nice leg kicks. He is an effective technical striker, as well as an effective brawler; he is capable of outpointing his opponents, but also loves to stand and trade and can be very effective in doing so. Dunham is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu black belt under UFC light heavyweight Robert Drysdale, and works well on the mat both offensively and defensively. He has solid wrestling skills and takedowns, as well, including a good double leg and a nice body-lock takedown. He works well from top position on the mat and has a solid ground and pound attack. Dunham is a durable fighter who possesses an excellent chin and great cardio, so I expect him to be ready for a full 15 minutes of action Saturday night, should this 155 pound scrap go the distance. Rodrigo Damm (20-8 MMA, 3-3 UFC) last saw action at UFC Fight Night 50 nearly four months ago, where he suffered a third round TKO at the hands of Al Iaquinta. The loss put him on a two-fight skid following a unanimous decision loss to Rashid Magomedov in his return to the lightweight division, and much like Dunham, he has his back against the proverbial wall heading into this fight, so he will be looking to leave it all in the cage. The Brazilian went 3-1 in the UFC’s featherweight division but was forced to move up to the lightweight division due to kidney issues. He is a bit undersized for the division, but capable of holding his own. He is able to fight in both orthodox and southpaw stances and puts together some decent combinations on the feet. Damm likes to throw kicks, high and low, but is most effective with his leg kicks. He has decent footwork and head movement, an excellent lead jab and a powerful straight right hand. His uppercut is effective, as is his overhand right, because he loads up on everything he throws, so when he connects precisely, he makes it count. It is worth noting that he owns a 2008 TKO victory over current top lightweight Jorge Masvidal, in a bout which also came in the 155 pound division. The former member of the Brazilian national wrestling team is an excellent grappler with a black belt in Brazilian Jiu Jitsu and owns half of his professional mixed martial arts victories by way of submission. He is talented on the mat, but has kept most of his UFC fights standing, which could either be due to lacking confidence in his takedowns or being overly confident in his striking. Damm is a tough veteran who possesses a decent chin and terrific cardio. I believe he will be ready for three full rounds of action against Dunham, if necessary. Gabe’s Thoughts: Simply put, I think Dunham is going to be too much for the Brazilian at 155 pounds and think this match-up is a gift of an opportunity for him to return to the win column. A dedicated “3D” who is well-trained and fully focused on getting his hand raised will have no trouble doing so on Saturday night. Even at the current betting price of -525, I think he is worth including in parlays, and I like him for one of my own. Gabe’s Call: Dunham by Unanimous Decision (30-27, 30-27, 29-28) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Evan Dunham (-525) parlayed with Donald Cerrone (-190) at -123 2.7u to win 2.2u

Written by Gabe Killian

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