UFC 157 Picks: Light heavyweights Lyoto Machida (-240) vs. Dan Henderson (+180)

lyoto-machida UFC on 157 Honda Center in Anaheim, California Saturday, February 23, 2013 Light heavyweight fight: Lyoto Machida (-240) vs. Dan Henderson (+180)   Fight Breakdown: Light heavyweight contenders Dan Henderson and Lyoto Machida clash in the co-main event of UFC 157 with a title shot against Jon Jones on the line. Machida entered the bout as a -240 favorite (bet $240 to win $100), while Henderson is a +180 underdog (bet $100 to win $180). Machida (18-3) is coming off a fantastic KO win over Ryan Bader at UFC on FOX 4, a fight that supposed to earn him a title shot. However, after the debacle of UFC 151 Machida was forced to take a fight with Henderson, and it’s a fight he can win if he can execute his effective Karate-based style that keeps his opponents on their toes at all times. Machida is one of the most talented strikers in the sport but he can’t brawl with Henderson in this fight. He needs to time his counters when Henderson is coming in and clip him. Henderson’s never been knocked out but if anyone will finally crack his chin it will be Machida. Henderson (29-8) hasn’t competed since the “Fight of the Century” against Mauricio “Shogun” Rua at UFC 139 in November 2011. Henderson is of course known for his powerful right hand, his Greco-roman wrestling, and his ability to withstand massive amounts of punishment. He is a warrior, and even though he’s 42-years old he’s still competing at an incredibly high level, having taken out “Shogun,” Fedor Emelianenko, Rafael “Feijao” Cavalcante and Renato “Babalu” Sobral in his last four fights. Henderson is coming off a nasty knee injury and the disappointment of not getting his title fight against Jones at UFC 151, so he has lots of question marks surrounding him heading into this bout against Machida. But despite all the question marks, Henderson — who is one of the sport’s all-time greats — can never be counted out of a fight. Fight Prediction: Henderson only needs to land one punch to win this fight, and I think he’ll do it. It might take him a round or two to find his distance for his patented ‘H-Bomb,’ but Henderson is going to land at some point, knocking Machida out and earning his rematch with Jon Jones. Adam’s Pick: Henderson via T/KO (click for latest UFC 157 odds) Adam’s Recommended Play: In what I believe is a 50/50 fight, to get Henderson at anything around +200 is a good value bet. As well, the prop on Henderson inside the distance (as well as Henderson via T/KO) is paying out close to +400 in some spots. I like both as small value bets because this is a tough fight to call.

Written by Adam Martin.

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