TUF 17 Finale Picks: Travis Browne (-300) vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (+220)

Travis Browne TUF 17 Finale Mandalay Bay Events Center Saturday, April 13, 2013 Three-round Heavyweight Bout: Travis Browne (-300) vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (+220) Fight Breakdown: A three-round heavyweight bout between Travis Browne and Gabriel Gonzaga takes place this weekend at the TUF 17 Finale. Browne currently sits as a -300 favorite (bet $300 to win $100) on Several Bookmakers, while Gonzaga is a +220 underdog (bet $100 to win $220). Browne (13-1-1) was making a run up the UFC heavyweight ladder but last October at UFC on FX 5 he suffered a hamstring injury throwing a fancy kick against Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva and was promptly knocked out. Now recovered from his injury, Browne is looking to start making another push for the title and it all starts with Gonzaga, who is a favorable matchup for the 30-year-old Browne. Yes, Gonzaga has a great ground game, but his chin is somewhat suspect and Browne has incredible knockout power that has seen him collect nine wins via T/KO, including a superman punch KO on Stefan Struve at UFC 130. Look for Browne to be super aggressive in this fight and try to prove that he’s still one of the top heavyweights in the world by taking out Gonzaga, a former UFC heavyweight title challenger. Gonzaga (14-6) is having a career resurgence of sorts as the 33-year-old is riding a three-fight win streak for the first time in six years. Gonzaga, who is most famous for his shocking head kick KO win over Mirko Cro Cop at UFC 70, is a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt and we saw in his last outing against Ben Rothwell at UFC on FX 7 that he’s got an extremely deadly ground game, as he finished his opponent with a slick guillotine choke. Gonzaga has long been one of the heavyweight division’s gatekeepers, but is it possible that he’s finally turned the corner and is ready to make a second run for the title? (He lost to Randy Couture in his first title fight back at UFC 74.) For Gonzaga to enter back into the top 10 he needs to dispatch of Browne in impressive fashion, but this seems like a very bad matchup for him, as Browne hits hard and Gonzaga has been knocked out in five of his six losses. Fight Prediction: After his loss to “Bigfoot” last October, Browne knows he needs to get back into the win column if he ever wants to make a run for the UFC heavyweight title. Although Gonzaga is a very solid veteran who has been red-hot as of late, Browne possesses heavy knockout power and Gonzaga has been finished with strikes many times. The fight will be interesting if it hits the ground but I don’t think it will, as I see Browne finishing off Gonzaga via strikes in the first or the second round. Adam’s Pick: Browne via KO (click for latest MMA odds) Adam’s Recommended Play: I hit Browne when he opened at -210, but at -300, I’d definitely be a little more cautious about betting him. Yes, on paper Browne should knock out Gonzaga, but who knows, this is a heavyweight fight and Gonzaga certainly has KO power himself. As such, take a look at the “Fight does not go to distance” line and also take a look at the prop for Browne via T/KO when it’s released — that might be your best bet at this point.

Written by Adam Martin.

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TUF 17 Finale Betting Odds Breakdown: Heavyweights Travis Browne (-210) vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (+160)

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