UFC on FOX 21 Opening Betting Odds

ufc-on-fox-21-posterIt’s been just over a month since the UFC was last on big FOX. With the NFL just ramping up the preseason, the short turnaround and increased exposure from the casual sports fan may mean the UFC sees increased viewership for the welterweight showdown between former interim champion Carlos Condit and Demian Maia. With the recent title change at 170, the division is now wide open for the winner between Condit and Maia to step right into a title opportunity. Originally scheduled to take place as a three-round bout at UFC 202, the change to a five round main event seems to favor Condit on paper, but it’s difficult to look past Maia’s grappling dominance over the past two-plus years. The bout is nearly a pick em, with Maia sitting at -115, and Condit at -105 right now at Several Bookmakers. The event also features the featherweight debut of former UFC and WEC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis, as he looks to rebound from three consecutive losses against Charles Oliveira. All of Pettis’ losses have come to top fighters in the lightweight division, but it has been a severe fall for the former champion nonetheless. The main card is rounded out by the return of strawweight Paige Van Zant, as she takes her first fight since losing to Rose Namajunas and competing on ‘Dancing With The Stars’. Van Zant takes on Bec Rawlings. The opening bout of the main card is a rematch between Jim Miller and Joe Lauzon, which will be a phenomenal bout if it’s even half as good as their first encounter. MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened the betting odds for the remaining UFC on FOX 21 bouts today at Several Bookmakers. Check them out: ——————– UFC on FOX 21: Maia vs. Condit AUGUST 27, 2016 Rogers Arena | Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada Main Card FOX – 8pm ET Demian Maia +100 Carlos Condit -140 (Originally Maia opened -130 before fight was switched to 5 rounds) – Charles Oliveira +150 Anthony Pettis -190 Over 1.5 -190 Under 1.5 +150 – Bec Rawlings +175 Paige VanZant -245 Over 2.5 -300 Under 2.5 +220 – Joe Lauzon -110 Jim Miller -130 Over 2.5 -150 Under 2.5 +110 ——————– Preliminary Card FOX – 6pm ET Kevin Casey +150 Sam Alvey -190 Over 1.5 -190 Under 1.5 +150 – Thibault Gouti +190 Chad Laprise -270 Over 2.5 -170 Under 2.5 +130 – Enrique Barzola +145 Kyle Bochniak -185 Over 2.5 -185 Under 2.5 +145 – Felipe Silva +125 Shane Campbell -165 Over 1.5 -170 Under 1.5 +130 ——————– Preliminary Card UFC Fight Pass – 4:30pm ET Alex Ricci +145 Jeremy Kennedy -185 Over 2.5 -190 Under 2.5 +150 – Garreth McLellan +185 Alessio Di Chirico -265 Over 1.5 -180 Under 1.5 +140 – Ning Guangyou +110 Marlon Vera -150 Over 2.5 -165 Under 2.5 +125 – Ryan Janes +150 Adam Hunter -190 Over 1.5 +110 Under 1.5 -150 ——————– Brad’s Analysis: Anthony Pettis’ big struggle has been allowing fighters to dictate the pace of his recent fights, whether they’re playing out on the feet or it’s turning into a grappling match. The exact same thing could happen against Charles Oliveira, who consistently moves forward in his fights. I fear for Oliveira that his lack of durability will be what lets him down in a fight that he may be ahead in. The UFC wants Paige Van Zant to be successful, because she’s one of a very select few fighters who brings another demographic to the sport. This matchmaking is smart on their part, because Rawlings doesn’t offer a particularly strong wrestling or striking game, and those are the two areas that Van Zant can still be exploited. In a grappling match with Rawlings though, her pace and scrambling ability will have her come out on top. This fight comes down to whether you think Miller or Lauzon is further along on the downslope of their career. At their respective peaks, Miller was the better fighter, but I think he’s also declined more of the two. Lauzon can bring a pace at this point that Miller can’t sustain, and that’s on top of the fact that Lauzon began to find more and more success as their first bout went on. Miller may start strong again here, but as he fades I think Lauzon can really take over and steal this fight. Nobody gets the peasants amped up for a FOX main card like the King, so he was the clear choice to headline the prelims here. He will entertain his minions with a sporting contest against Sam Alvey, and may even be kind enough to allow Alvey to win. The King knows that Alvey has been through enough already in his life be being born a redhead, and he is an honest and noble King. A late stoppage for Alvey isn’t out of the question here, and I think the King should be applauded for taking on such a stylistically poor challenge for himself. Things haven’t exactly gone well for Thibault Gouti in his UFC run so far. He’s shown porous defense (both striking and takedown), his offensive grappling isn’t particularly impressive, and his striking is middle of the road. I expect Chad Laprise to be able to move around his consistently, pick his shots, and perhaps even mix in a takedown or two en route to a decision victory. Kyle Bochniak put on a good performance on extremely short notice against Charles Rosa, and now he gets a more suitable opponent for him in Enrique Barzolo. Bochniak will be the better wrestler here, so as long as he’s able to shore up his striking defense even a bit, I think he can control the grappling on his way to a victory. It’s hard to have too much faith in either side of this fight, but the pick will certainly be Bochniak for me. As a Canadian MMA fan, I’ve been hearing for years how Shane Campbell’s grappling is greatly improved, only to see it fail when tested. That shouldn’t be a problem against the debuting Felipe Silva, who prefers to strike as well. In that sort of bout, Campbell will have the advantage and I don’t think Silva has the offensive wrestling to get him to the mat consistently. If Alessio Di Chirico gets under 2-to-1, I think I’ll end up playing him here. He was impressive against a tough opponent in Bojan Velickovic, and is now facing a fighter who is almost the exact opposite of the Serbian. Gareth McLellan had already shown us in his UFC tenure that his takedown defense couldn’t cut it at this level, and in his last outing we saw that his striking defense is just as bad. Di Chirico should be able to exploit either area to score a win, but it’s a bit scary relying on an Italian MMA fighter at the highest level. There’s such a lack of Canadian presence on this card above this (just Shane Campbell and Chad Laprise), that I actually forgot this card is taking place in Vancouver. So here’s the obligatory Canadian matchup, as a pair of debuting fighters riding seven-fight win streaks square off. Hunter is more dangerous on the feet, Janes is more dangerous on the mat. It all depends on who gets the fight where they want it, and I think that will be Hunter. This could be the spot to look at a well-priced over bet coming from a pair of guys who have finished almost all their fights in the past. I may end up betting Guangyou as the underdog here, as Marlon Vera continues to underwhelm me. Vera has been taken down and controlled in all of his UFC fights, and I think Guangyou is powerful enough to continue that trend. Perhaps Vera can find a submission like he did in his lone UFC win against Roman Salazar, but I’m willing to take a chance that he doesn’t.

Written by Brad Taschuk

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