After a 3 week break we are back! A couple of nice wins on GSP and Hendricks certainly balanced up the last event. Positively, we are still in profit on the year, at £6.06 to a £1 stake. It’s not huge, but it is consistent. Remember, if you bet at £10 a fight then that profit would have been £60.60. Many Internet tipsters discuss profitability and stakes at far higher than those I use, but gambling should always be responsible. If you do follow my picks, please feel free to pick and choose accordingly, and only bet what you can afford to lose.
We return to the, now standard, six fight main card this week. Initial analysis is finding little in the way of true value. A few decent prices are available to take advantage of though. I have to admit that the late withdrawal of Alex Gustafsson from the main event has deflated me a little with his replacement deflating me even further. This was a card that was always going to be reliant on the main event and the remaining fighters should look at The Mauler’s withdrawal as a solid opportunity to take home one of those juicy bonus cheques.
Corassani v Peralta:
Against Jason Young in Nottingham, Robbie Peralta proved that he possesses a pair of very heavy hands. Despatching Young in only 23 seconds, the reality is that it went on a few seconds longer than it needed to. That was his 10th consecutive fight without loss – not all wins as the previous fight was ruled a No Contest. On the same Nottingham card, TUF 11 competitor Akira Corassani laboured to a tightly contested split decision win over Andy Ogle in a UFC debut for both fighters. Throughout most of the fight Corassani appeared to do just about enough to sway the judges, but if truth be told he didn’t really impress anyone with that performance. If the fight can be kept standing then I really fancy Peralta to take a comfortable win by KO. If Corassani is to beat the odds, then he will need to utilise his Renzo Gracie Purple Belt, take it to the ground and look for the submission that has twice beaten Peralta in his career. My money feels relatively safe on Peralta, and the Swedish crowd will experience their first main card loss of the night.
Recommendation: Method of Victory: Robbie Peralta by TKO/KO – 4/5 @ Ladbrokes
Brandao v Garza:
This could well be Fight of the Night, or Snooze of the Night, depending on which fighters show up. With his job on the line, Pablo Garza overturned the odds to beat a now-retired Mark Hominick in his last fight. It wasn’t a pretty affair, but it got the job done. Brandao was the TUF 14 champion who was on the receiving end of a unanimous decision loss to Darren Elkins at UFC 146. That was probably the poorest fight on the card and the gulf in class was apparent. In order for either of these fighters to climb the Featherweight ranks a huge improvement is needed. I don’t see a way that this does not go the full three rounds, certainly given recent form. My only hope is that there are enough opportunities to fulfil the potential on show. At a best price of 1/2, there is little value in backing Brandao outright, so I will be putting a few pennies down on him to take a decision.
Recommendation: Method of Victory: Diego Brandao by Decision – 23/10 @ Ladbrokes
Pickett v Easton:
Mike Easton has spent the last few weeks talking about this being a potential Fight of the Year. In truth that’s probably a little ambitious for the Maryland native. The man known as ‘One Punch’, Brad Pickett is his opponent and this is a significant step up in class. Easton is tough, but Pickett should be at least one level above. Due to his all action style Pickett is a huge favourite of both Dana White and UFC fans alike. His last outing against Eddie Wineland ended in a split decision defeat, with Wineland going on to take a title shot against Renan Barao at UFC 161. Pickett will know that he wasn’t at his best that night and will be hoping that Easton puts in a similar performance as he did in his loss to Raphael Assuncao. Both of those fights went the distance and neither will want to experience that sting again. I think that Pickett is the far better fighter and will either hand Easton the first submission loss of his career or KO him with time to spare. Either way, I fancy Pickett to take this inside the distance.
Recommendation: Round Group Betting: Brad Pickett To Win Inside the Distance – 3/1 @ Ladbrokes
Mitrione v De Fries:
As far as main card fights go, this is one where pink slips could be up on offer for two fighters who have arguably reached their full potential. Almost a nothing bout, a win does little for Mitrione or De Fries other than keep them in the UFC. A poor fight could see both released, as we anticipate the next round of cuts. Neither have ever been top 10, nor are they likely to be. Both made their debut in 2009, although Mitrione has been fighting at a higher level for longer, and faced much tougher opponents. This fight ends one of two ways; either Mitrione knocks him out, or De Fries submits him. Mitrione has never been submitted in the UFC and I don’t think that De Fries will break that duck. Mitrione all the way for me, it won’t be pretty but he will get the job done in the second round.
Recommendation: Round Betting: Matt Mitrione in Round 2 – 4/1 @ Ladbrokes
Pearson v Couture:
Dana White would never admit to this, but it sure is good to see the Couture name live on in the UFC. Limping over from Strikeforce following a disputed win over KJ Noons, Couture finds himself in a battle against an opponent who really has his tail up right now. Ross Pearson successfully finished George Sotiripoulos to end The Smashes in December last year, and give me a 22/1 winner in the process. He is looking to get a decent run together at Lightweight after making his return from an unsuccessful experiment at Featherweight. In the process, he looks to construct a winning streak for the first time in three years. Pearson’s last six fights have seen him alternate wins and losses every time he steps into the Octagon. The saddest part of this fight is that more viewers may tune in to see whether Randy decides to corner his son. Whether he does or not is irrelevant, as this is a huge step up in class for Couture. Pearson will come to bang, and bang he shall, all the while giving me a nice little 3/1 winner for the KO.
Recommendation: Method of Victory: Ross Pearson by TKO/KO – 3/1 @ Paddy Power
Mousasi v Latifi:
In what was supposed to be the biggest test of Alex Gustafsson’s career to date, to be ruled out by injury at a late stage effectively kills an interesting main event. The debut of his opponent, Gegard ‘The Armenian Assassin’ Mousasi will now come against a training partner instead of a top five contender. Ilir Latifi steps in at five days’ notice against a heavy 1/14 favourite. I expect this fight to be so one-sided that it is very difficult to get excited about it. Bookies are a little stunned by the late switch and most are declining to price this up early doors. It is scheduled for three rounds; I think it will go less than one. Mousasi takes this by Submission, barely breaking a sweat in the process. If you can get a price on the submission then take it, but it will be a fight where I won’t be putting any money down (unless I can get more than 4/6 on a submission win)
Recommendation: No Bet………..
But if you must, then: Method of Victory: Gegard Mousasi by Submission – anywhere you can get more than 4/6.