UFC 183 Play: Ian McCall (-230) vs John Lineker (+190)

ian-mccall-2_crop_exactUFC 183 Date: January 31, 2015 Arena: MGM Grand Garden Arena City: Las Vegas, NV Flyweight bout: Ian McCall (-230) vs John Lineker (+190) Fight Breakdown: The UFC 183 preliminary card on FOX Sports 1 will feature a flyweight scrap that will likely determine the next challenger for the UFC Flyweight title, and a battle is expected when former Tachi Palace flyweight champion Ian “Uncle Creepy” McCall takes on Brazil’s John “Hands of Stone” Lineker. McCall is the betting favorite in this contest at -230 ($230 to win $100), with the return on the underdog Lineker being +190 ($190 to win $100) at Several Bookmakerss. Ian “Uncle Creepy” McCall (13-4-1 MMA, 2-2-1 UFC) last saw action six months ago at UFC Fight Night 46 in Ireland, where he earned a unanimous decision victory over Brad Pickett to make it two in a row inside the Octagon. McCall is a talented wrestler who works solid takedowns, including a double-leg and trip takedowns. He is powerful from top position and does a good job of advancing positions. He works an excellent ground and pound attack and believes it to be the best in the division. The 30-year old also does a good job of taking the backs of his opponents. He has a great submission game offensively, as well as great submission defense. He also has very good takedown defense and an excellent sprawl. “Uncle Creepy” is very quick on the feet and possesses tremendous footwork and head movement. To compliment it is his phenomenal cardio which allows him to keep his face for the entirety of three round, 15 minute contests. He will have an edge over Lineker in that department heading into this contest. The only weapons of Lineker’s he needs to look out for are his power punches, and I expect McCall to find success in doing so, as his is striking defense is very good. He does a good job of evading strikes, and he is also good at getting in, scoring and getting out without receiving any significant damage. Not to mention, he has a good chin and has never been finished with strikes. McCall has an excellent straight left, a solid jab and puts together some effective combinations on the feet. He also does a great job of using his strikes to set up his takedowns. On the feet, the 30-year old likes to be effective with all limbs, and he favors kicks to the body and knees with his opponents backed up against the cage. John “Hands of Stone” Lineker (24-7 MMA, 5-2 UFC) saw his four fight winning streak which included three knockouts snapped by Ali Bagautinov at UFC 169, but then he bounced back into the win column with a third round knockout of Alpetkin Ozkilic and now looks to make it two in a row against McCall, with hopes of earning a title shot with a victory. The 25- year old is a heavy hitter who loves to stand and trade. He is a real brawler with a great chin who throws bombs and is always willing to take two just to land one, as he is very confident in his hands. Lineker packs power behind every punch and is always capable of ending the fight with any one of them. He is a very aggressive fighter who likes to push the pace. The Brazilian has real killer instinct, as he looks for the kill from the opening bell until the final bell. He likes to close the distance on his opponents and looks to do damage with his heavy hands. To compliment his hands, the 25-year old has a solid kicking game, as well. He has a nice spinning back-kick, throws the crescent kick from time to time, and likes to work the inside leg of his opponents. Unlike Sam Stout, Lineker earns his “Hands of Stone” moniker, as his hands really are dangerous weapons. Even when he does not finish his opponents, he still drops them with his punches throughout the fight. He is fast, but he is also flat-footed, and his timing often gets thrown off against fighters with great footwork, which could spell for trouble against McCall. Lineker has solid takedown defense and great reversals on the mat. However, he does not have great cardio and will be at a disadvantage in that department heading into this battle against McCall. Gabe’s Thoughts: I think McCall is going to prove to be too quick for Lineker, and I see him outpointing him on the feet, as well as scoring takedowns and controlling him with wrestling. I see McCall cruising to a decision here, but I would not be surprised to see him earn a submission finish. I see value in him at the current line of -230, as I think he should be a -350 favorite in this contest. I think Lineker’s only chance at winning this fight is landing a lucky shot, and McCall is a tough opponent to score that against. It is also possible that he could score a knockdown in two different rounds and end up taking either a unanimous or split decision victory for that reason, but that scenario is also highly unlikely. More often than not, I believe McCall gets his hand raised here. Gabe’s Call: “Uncle Creepy” by Submission (rear naked choke, 3:23 round 3) Gabe’s Recommended Play: Ian McCall (-230) parlayed with Thiago Santos (-170) at +127 for 3.25u to win 4.15u

Written by Gabe Killian

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