UFC 187 Fight Breakdown: John Dodson vs. Zach Makovsky

John Dodson The main event of the UFC 187 prelims is a three-round flyweight bout between John Dodson and Zach Makovsky. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Dodson is a -450 favorite (bet $450 to win $100) while Makovsky is a +360 underdog (bet $100 to win $360). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Dodson at -400 and Makovsky at +280, and so far the public is all over Dodson. I highly favor Dodson to win this fight and agree with him being a big favorite. Here’s why. Dodson (16-6) won TUF 14 with a KO win over current UFC bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw and he has since gone onto become one of the best flyweights in the sport. The 30-year-old American is 5-1 in the UFC with wins over the likes of John Moraga, Tim Elliott and Jussier Formiga at flyweight, with his only loss coming to current champion Demetrious Johnson. Despite being one of the smallest fighters on the UFC roster, Dodson is one of the most powerful punchers. He has 10 finishes for a flyweight, including eight by knockout. He is extremely compact and explosive and when he catches your chin it’s almost always lights out. He is extremely fast, athletic, and powerful, and many believe he’s the best at 125lbs outside of the champ. If he has one flaw in his game it’s his pace and activity level, as there are times where he will not throw strikes, but more often than not he can wait around and throw that one big bomb and that’s all he needs to win. He’s also shown some cardio issue in his 25-minute fight with Johnson, but that likely won’t be a concern in a three-round bout. Dodson has been out for nearly a year due to injuries, but now back healthy, he should be able to continue on his warpath, and an impressive win over Makovsky will likely earn him a title shot. Makovsky (19-5) is the former Bellator bantamweight champion. The 32-year-old American is 3-1 in the UFC with wins over Elliott, Josh Sampo and Scott Jorgensen with his long lone coming to Formiga. Makovsky, who trains at TriStar, is a highly-technical fighter both on the feet and on the mat. On the feet he throws strikes with excellent technique, and while he doesn’t have much power (only one career knockout), he makes up for it with precision. But his biggest strength is his grappling. He has very good wrestling, both offensively and defensively, and doesn’t make many mistakes on the mat. It’s his wrestling that’s his bread and butter and it’s led him to winning 12 decisions and getting six submissions on the mat. However, he has to get the fight there, and going up against a guy with solid takedown defence like Dodson, that’s going to be tricky. Makovsky certainly has the skills to beat a lot of 125lbers in the UFC, but Dodson is a different beast and this is a really tough matchup for him on paper because if he doesn’t get this fight to the mat he will get lit up on the feet, and it’s because of that the he’s a big underdog heading into the fight. I really like Dodson in this fight. I know he’s coming off of a long layoff, but he’s a far superior fighter to Makovsky and I fully expect him to get the job done in this fight. Whether it’s by decision or by knockout, I believe Dodson is going to outstrike Makovsky for the duration of this contest and get his hand raised at the end of 15 minutes or less. When I break down this contest, I just can’t see Makovsky winning this fight in any way outside of a bad judges’ decision, so even though Dodson is priced high at -450, I still feel confident in him getting the win, and I think he’s one of the better parlay pieces this weekend.

Written by Adam Martin.

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