RFA 24 Betting Odds

RFA 24With a slower MMA slate this weekend, the most prominent card taking place will be Friday night’s RFA 24. The event will air on AXS TV, and marks the promotion’s second trip to the Mystic Lake Casino in Minnesota. There is a title fight headlining the show, but it is atypical of RFA’s usual booking, as both men in the bout at 34 years old. Two-time RFA veteran Ben Smith will take on 11-year veteran and Minnesota native Tat Romero for the welterweight title in that main event. Both men have been on solid runs of late, with Smith victorious in his last five bouts since losing to former RFA champion Mike Rhodes back in June of 2013. Romero holds a six-fight winning streak at present, and has notched stoppages in five of those victories. In the co-main event, one of the pioneers of the lighter weights, Jeff Curran, returns to the cage for the first time since 2013 to take on Minnesotan Melvin Blumer. Curran’s last RFA appearance was a surprisingly competitive bout with Pedro Munhoz, while Blumer makes his debut in the promotion, and appear on the same card as his brother Marvin. MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened the betting odds for these two fights today at Several Bookmakers for RFA 24. Take a look: ——————– MAIN CARD (AXS TV, 10pm ET) RFA Welterweight Title Ben Smith -175 Tat Romero +135 Melvin Blumer -115 Jeff Curran -125 ——————– Brad’s Analysis: In watching Romero’s previous fights, he seems to rely on one advantage that he generally has over opponents, his strength. I don’t think he’ll have that against a bigger opponent in Smith, and across 25 minutes I expect him to slow down because his style is so power-based. Smith isn’t a particularly good finisher, but if Romero tires and he can get a dominant position with his wrestling I can definitely see a stoppage in the later rounds. Smith will be susceptible in the early going for some of Romero’s power shots, but aside from that concern, I like his chances to take home the belt. I think Jeff Curran is being underrated a bit in this bout by the general public. He did far better than I expected against Pedro Munhoz, and that was a way more difficult test for him than Blumer. Obviously age will be a factor, and Blumer will have a size advantage here, but even if the hometown fighter uses that to take the fight to the ground Curran will be more dangerous. On the feet, I think Curran is the cleaner boxer, but Blumer will have more power (although that likely won’t matter, as Curran hasn’t been finished with strikes in nearly 15 years). It should be a competitive bout, so if the public takes this line the way I expect them to, Curran may be worth a small play. I wouldn’t say I’m particularly eager to bet on a 37-year-old bantamweight though.

Written by Brad Taschuk

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