UFC 183 Fight Breakdown: Diego Brandao vs. Jimy Hettes

Diego Brandao One of the Fight Pass prelims at UFC 183 is a three-round featherweight bout between Diego Brandao and Jimy Hettes. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Brandao is a -170 favorite (bet $170 to win $100) while Hettes is a +150 underdog (bet $100 to win $150). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Brandao at -165 and Hettes at +125 and the public is backing Brandao so far. I agree with Brandao being the favorite here as I’m picking him to win this fight. Here’s why. Brandao (18-10) won TUF 14 and has gone on to post a 4-3 record in the UFC with wins over Dennis Bermudez, Daniel Pineda, Pablo Garza and Joey Gambino and losses to Conor McGregor, Dustin Poirier and Darren Elkins. Brandao is a very dangerous fighter in both the standup and ground game. He has nine career knockout wins as well as five wins by submission, not including his fights in the TUF house. He also has very underrated wrestling. However, his problem is his chin and cardio. He has been T/KOed six times in his career and his cardio has let him down in many of his fights that have gone past the first round. Fortunately those things shouldn’t bother him too much against Hettes, who poses no knockout threat and who isn’t a cardio machine in his own right, but it’s something to keep in mind when betting on him in this fight. Hettes (11-2) is 3-2 in the UFC with wins over Robert Whiteford, Nam Phan and Alex Caceres and losses to Marcus Brimage and Bermudez. The 27-year-old burst onto the scene in 2011 with his wins over Phan and Caceres but in the four years since has only one victory. He has been injury prone and hasn’t competed as much as he’d like to, and it’s really stalled out his career. As far as his skills go, Hettes is an excellent ground fighter. He has a judo background that allows him to get clinch takedowns and once on the mat he has good control and submission ability. He has 10 career wins by submission and he’s just an extremely dangerous fighter whether on top or on the bottom if the fight is on the ground. However, while he is so good on the ground, his striking is very mediocre. He has very rudimentary boxing and while his chin is decent, it’s not great. He’s a guy who needs to get his fights to the mat to win, and going up against a solid grappler in Brandao, there’s no guarantee he does that, and that’s why he’s the dog here. I don’t think either of these fighters is great, and I think that despite both being only 27 years of age, both have peaked. Hettes, though, has looked terrible as of late, and there’s no way I can pick him against a guy as dangerous as Brandao. It seems like opponents have figured out that if you can keep Hettes on the feet, you are probably going to beat him. Brandao has many flaws in his game, namely his chin and his gas tank, but Hettes’ chin isn’t great either and his cardio isn’t much better than Brandao’s. He’s not a lock to win or anything, but I have to imagine Brandao finds a way to get his hand raised here, probably by TKO or maybe by decision. I don’t know if I could bet him because of his defensive deficiencies, but it’s a favorite-or-pass situation for sure.

Written by Adam Martin.

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