UFC on FOX 16 Fight Breakdown: TJ Dillashaw vs. Renan Barao 2

Dillashaw Barao The main event of UFC on FOX 16 is a five-round title fight rematch between UFC bantamweight champion TJ Dillashaw and challenger Renan Barao. According to the current betting lines available at Several Bookmakers, Dillashaw is a -220 favorite (bet $220 to win $100) while Barao is a +180 underdog (bet $100 to win $180). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Dillashaw at -215 and Barao at +165, and there has been slightly more action on the champ Dillashaw so far. I agree with the betting public favoring Dillashaw here as I expect him to win this fight. Here’s why. Dillashaw (11-2) is the UFC bantamweight champion. The 29-year-old American is 7-2 in the UFC with wins over Barao, Joe Soto, Vaughan Lee, Mike Easton, Hugo Viana, Issei Tamura and Walel Watson and losses to Raphael Assuncao and John Dodson. Dillashaw was the runner-up on TUF 14 and has since gone onto become an incredible champion in the Octagon. He comes from a wrestling background and not surprisingly his ground game is fantastic training with other stud fighters at Team Alpha Male, but in recent years his training with Duane Ludwig has led to him becoming one of the best strikers in the bantamweight division. He has incredible movement and footwork and throws an incredible volume of strikes. He also has knockout power and proved it with his fifth-round head kick finish of Barao when the pair first met at UFC 173. Dillashaw is a fantastic fighter, but one thing going against him is he is coming off of an 11-month layoff. We’ll see how the rematch goes this weekend, but if it’s anything like the first fight, then it should be a good night for Dillashaw. Barao (33-2, 1 NC) is the former UFC bantamweight champion. The 28-year-old Brazilian is 8-1 in the UFC with wins over Urijah Faber (x2), Mitch Gagnon, Eddie Wineland, Michael McDonald, Scott Jorgensen, Brad Pickett and Cole Escovedo with his lone loss in the Octagon to Dillashaw. Barao is a fantastic, well-rounded mixed martial artist. On the feet he is a varied striker with knockout power, he has slick submissions on the ground, and he has solid wrestling as well. Up until the Dillashaw fight he was looking like the top pound-for-pound fighter in the world but he got exposed in that fight and not many people are as high on him anymore. He’s had a lot of problems with weight cutting and with injuries in recent years and after the beatdown Dillashaw put on him, he didn’t look as good in his next fight against Gagnon. I still think Barao is a great fighter, but after seeing what happened when he fought Dillashaw the first time, it makes sense he is the underdog in the rematch. The first time these two fought I was all over Barao, and we all saw what happened there. This time I’m picking on Dillashaw to win this fight, because after seeing him dismantle Barao over the course of 25 minutes in the first fight it’s impossible not to pick Dillashaw in the rematch. The question is whether or not this is a fight to bet. I’ve been on the fence all week. I do feel like Dillashaw is going to win, but -220 is a lot of juice as I believe this rematch will be closer than the first fight. As of right now, I’m going to pass on a bet, but if I change my mind I’ll update the article and let everyone know. I just want to see how Barao looks on the scale first, because if he looks like a ghost again I’ll probably eat the juice and bet on Dillashaw, but I just want to gain as much information as I can before I make the bet. Having said that, I’m definitely picking Dillashaw here, and I think he can win by T/KO again. UPDATE: I decided to pass on Dillashaw. Sit back and enjoy this one.

Written by Adam Martin.

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