Welcome again to the Fantasy MMA Betting League tipsters panel!
Our regular duo make their picks as usual and we’re joined by William from Strictlymma.com… More than likely he’ll become a regular tipster, as long as he doesn’t show us up too much!
Mike (me) - of mmagame.com. Full time MMA fanatic and improving tipster.
Doug - proprietor of Zewkey.com. Top tipster and MMA betting expert.
William - of Strictlymma.com - The newcomer!
At the time of writing in this very changeable market, the odds provided by BetOnFighting were as follows.
-450 Mirko CroCop vs Gabriel Gonzaga +370
-110 Fabricio Werdum vs Andre Arlovski -120
+500 Elvis Sinosic vs Michael Bisping -700
+225 David Heath vs Ryoto Machida -285
-205 Assuerio Silva vs Cheick Kongo +165
+100 Matt Grice vs Terry Etim -130
-150 Junior Assuncao vs David Lee +120
+150 Victor Valimaki vs Alessio Sakara -180
-200 Dennis Siver vs Jess Liaudin +160
So on to the picksâ€¦
UFC 70 is a minefield for me.Â There are several fighters getting heavy support from the MMA geeks, I’m not sure that any of them deserve it though.
I will start off with the main event.Â I have been reading a lot about Gonzaga and his ground attack, how good he is, and if it goes to the ground he will dominate.Â I’m not buying it.Â CroCop wins this one easily.Â CroCop is the kind of dependable favorite you look for, he dominates inferior opponents, ends fights effectively and rarely gets in trouble.Â Mirko rolls and I’m going to make a small profit off him.
I’m not betting the Arlovski vs.Werdum match, but I think all the love for Werdum is a trap.Â AA should be able to control this match standing, Werdum is going to have to inflict some damage standing before he can work his submission magic- Arlovski is not going to just lay down.Â I don’t trust Arlovski, he has problems adjusting to the action, so I will pass.
I like Kongo to pull off the upset over Silva.Â I think Kongo should be favored in this bout. I originally overlooked this fight, but one of our forum members started discussing it with me.Â I value Kongo’s KO power more than Silva’s ground game.Â Kongo will hold a significant fitness advantage that will allow him to escape Silva’s LnP in rounds 2 and 3.Â Cheick has more weapons to end this fight than Silva.Â He’s a solid underdog.
A lot of people have given up on or forgotten about Sakara after his loss to McFedries.Â He’s a young guy, 26, that has good powerful striking and solid chin.Â Sakara has had a rough time lately, but he’s been competitive against two good fighters and should show a big improvement Saturday.Â Both these guys are looking for a quality win.Â The Matrix will look to get the fight to the ground, but Sakara is good enough to hold his own on the mat.Â Sakara holds a big advantage standing and that will be where this bout is decided.
Going in to this event, my picks were going to be Werdum, Kongo, Machida and maybe even a flutter on Gonzaga. However, as a proud member of the JT Warwagon I decided to watch a lot of DVDs last night and after doing so, I realised that my insticts were more than likely absolute crap.
CroCop vs Gonzaga
Now as I say I was thinking about having a little flutter on Gonzaga here. I’d been impressed when I watched him demolish Marrero in his last fight and that was a real pull. However, I went back and rewatched the fight and it was a good performance but there’s “impressive” and then there’s “impressive enough to beat the second best HW in the world”… It wasn’t the latter! With that in mind I think -500 is actually pretty decent odds. Gonzaga isn’t that big a HW and I see CroCop tossing him to one side if he even gets close enough to try a takedown.
Werdum vs Arlovski
Coming into this fight I was leaning towards Werdum. The forums were picking him and it made sense. He’d apparently faced better competition, he’d just owned Aleks and AA had shown below par takedown defense in his last fight with Pe De Pano. That all points towards a sub win for Werdum, so as I sat down to watch a selection of his fights I was expecting to convince myself of that fact. However after watching Werdum vs Overeem, Big Nog, Gonzaga and a couple of other fights, all I could think was that his standup just isn’t good enough. Don’t get me wrong, when he’s on the ground he has some SERIOUS SKILLS but this isn’t the ADCC, this MMA and Arlovski hits like a truck!
Werdum can’t hurt Arlovski on the feet. People say AA has a weak chin but that’s absolute crap. He’s been KO’d but they’ve been by absolute bombs, plus he’s been cracked right on the button by plenty of people from Sylvia to Zentsov and not gone down. At the same time, Werdum has only 1 KO on his record and watching his fights you can see why.
On the other side of the coin while Werdum’s chin is certainly OK, he’s no Mark Hunt. Big Nog may be a decent boxer but he has very few KOs on his record, and he dropped Werdum 3 times in their fight. With that said, AA can certainly hurt him standing and without having to worry about what’s coming back, I can see AA letting fly with some bombs. Werdum moves well on his feet though so I can certainly see it lasting a good distance into the fight and hey… I can totally see a Werdum sub if it goes to the ground. What I can also see is AA managing to stall long enough for them to be stood back up though and as the fight wears on I think Werdum is more and more likely to end up flat on his backside with a big hairy man pounding him in the face.
Machida vs Heath
I’d never seen Heath before but conventional wisdom says that the UFC will eventually want Machida to step up and become a challenger, given his impressive list of victims. What I always like to remember in this situation is that the UFC picks these matchups… If they wanted to hand out a first loss to Machida, it would certainly be to a more recognisable name than David Heath. Again though, after finding a video of David Heath to watch, I was actually impressed. He looks to have good, powerful and relaxed standup… however he is really, really open to front leg kicks. Machida is going to chop him down until he can barely walk and once that happens it doesn’t matter how relaxed his standup is, he’s going to take a beating.
The rest of the card….
I wanted to bet on Kongo because Silva has looked ropey in his short UFC career to date. The problem is the more I think about that fight the more stupid that bet sounds. Silva will win but I’m not sure enough to bet on it.
I think I may also chuck a few dollars on Terry Etim. I’ve never seen the guy fight but I’ve heard good things about him and when the lines opened there was clearly some action on him. When that’s the case on an undercard bout that virtually nobody knows about, it’s got to mean something.
UFC 70 is a pretty lop sided card (except for the Werdum - Arlovski fight) and also features some relatively unknown fighters on the undercard. The key to betting on this card is to find an underdog that you’re comfortable with and let it ride. If you personally are familiar with any of the undercard fighters, you have a chance to make some money at this event but I’m just going to stick to the main card.
Gabriel Gonzaga vs. Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic
Even with Serra’s surprising upset victory over Georges St. Pierre fresh in everyone’s memory, it seems no one wants to step up and pick Gonzaga in this fight. The odds makers have Gonzaga at +370, which makes him a sizeable underdog, however it’s not as overwhelming as some would have predicted. Gonzaga really only has one way to win this fight and that is by establishing dominant position on the ground and working strikes from the top. Even with Gonzaga being an expert in Jiu Jitsu, it’s really hard to see Cro Cop getting submitted from the top as he looks as athletic and strong as ever.
So, is there a good enough chance of Gonzaga being able to take Cro Cop down that you should risk your money and pick the underdog? In a word, “no.” Gonzaga’s weakest part of his game is his takedowns and he’s going up against a man who has quite possibly the best takedown defense in all of Mixed Martial Arts. Even though we are in the year of the upset, I fully expect Cro Cop to win this fight by knockout.
David Heath vs. Lyoto Machida
Machida was originally scheduled to face Forrest Griffin, who had to withdraw due to an injury. In my opinion, Machida is getting a tougher challenge in David Heath. With Griffin, Machida was pretty much guaranteed a stand up war that I believe he was very capable of winning. However, Heath’s strong point of his game is wrestling and we haven’t seen much Machida’s takedown defense or ground work in his young career. Heath comes in at +285 and may be an underdog that warrants serious consideration.
Elvis Sinosic vs. Michael Bisping
Poor, Elvis Sinosic. The guy just never gets an easy fight in the UFC. After beating Jeremy Horn in his UFC debut, he has lost to Tito Ortiz, Evan Tanner, Babalu, Forrest Griffin, and Alessio Sakara. This time he takes on hometown favorite Michael Bisping in another fight that he is seemingly supposed to lose. The odds makers have recognized this and put Sinosic at +500. This surprised me to some extent because Bisping really showed poor takedown defense in last fight with Eric Schafer. Although Bisping won that fight, I felt his exposed a area of his game that needed improving. It might not be such a bad idea to take a chance on Sinosic, especially since the odds are so good. If Elvis can get inside, he may be able to take Bisping down and hold him there. However, if we know Elvis, he’ll charge in with his chin up high and be in for a short night. (Shameless plug): Check out http://www.strictlymma.com/’s interview with Sinosic up now.
Fabricio Werdum vs. Andrei Arlovski
This is by far the most competitive fight of the card and the odds reflect it. Both fighters come in a -115, so you’re getting pretty close to even money regardless of which way you go. Personally, I will put my money on Arlovski. I think Andrei has a huge advantage in the striking department and submission defense has never been a problem for the Pitbull. All of Arlovski’s losses have come to fighters who were able to outstrike him, namely Tim Sylvia, Pedro Rizzo, and Ricco Rodriguez. Werdum’s main strength is his Jiu Jitsu, but I just can’t see him submitting Arlovski.
Cheick Kongo vs. Assuerio Silva
It seems like just yesterday the Cheick Kongo bandwagon was full of MMA fans confident that the French fighter would be the next Heavyweight champion. One disappointing decision loss later, and Kongo is put at +195 against journeyman Assuerio Silva and rightfully so. Unless Kongo has improved his ground game and takedown defense immensely, he should be in for a long night spent on his back. I use the word,. “should” because Assuerio Silva is notoriously known for having bad game plans. The only way I see Kongo winning this fight is if Assuerio tries to stand with him. However, if Silva chooses to implement his superior grappling game, he should be able to get a submission or decision win.
Summary of picks
The following bets have been placed in our MMA Fantasy Betting League. All users start with a fantasy balance of $200. You can join for free here.
Doug from Zewkey.com
Current Balance $223.50
Current record MMA 8:3
Current record UFC 3:2
Mike from MMAGame.com
Current Balance $429.44
Current record MMA 25:5
Current record UFC 9:2
$100 on Arlovski
$50 on CroCop
William from Strictlymma.com
Current balance $200
Current record 0:0
David Heath $40
Elvis Sinosic $10
Andre Arlovski $50
Last tipster panel event - Ultimate Fight Night 9
Mike went 3/3 and Doug scored 2/3.
Mike: $69.75 profit off $150 of bets
Doug : $1.90 profit off $30 of bets - don’t spend it all at once!
Bet for real!!!!
If you’re feeling confident and you want to bet for real, please use one of the following links.
BetOnFighting - where we take our odds from
Sportsbook - massive online sportsbook
Bodog - still accepts US residents for sports betting, poker and casino play.