UFC 168 Betting Preview

Posted: December 28, 2013 in General
Tags: , , , , , ,

By Jesse Granger

Saturday night two of the most anticipated rematches of 2013 will come to fruition right here in Las Vegas.  The MGM Grand Garden Arena is the site for the long awaited rematch between Anderson Silva and Chris Weidman. Silva is possibly the greatest mixed martial artist ever, but it’s Weidman who holds the strap heading into the rematch, after a second round knockout in July.  Before the middleweight grudge match though, is a rematch between the superstars of the women’s division – TUF coaches Ronda Rousey and Miesha Tate.  As usual, the UFC has stacked this New Year’s week card with awesome matchups, so here’s some tips on betting the card.

Josh Barnett (-240) vs Travis Browne (+180)

Before either rematch takes place, the octagon walls will be tested when two massive heavyweights face off.  Josh Barnett stands at 6-foot-3 and tips the scales at 248 pounds, and he will be looking up at Travis Browne at 6-foot-7.  Browne is the much better striker, and is much quicker on his feet.  He enters the bout on a wave of momentum off of back-to-back knockouts of Gabriel Gonzaga and Alistair Overeem, but now faces a new challenge.  Barnett is one of the craftiest heavyweights around, and his catch wrestling submission game is lethal.  Browne is inexperienced on the mat, and Barnett will control the match once he gets it there.  If -240 is too steep of odds for you, taking Barnett by submission could be a good bet, as 20 of Barnett’s 30 career wins have come by way of submission.  

Ronda Rousey (-1000) vs Miesha Tate (+650)

The term grudge match is often thrown around lightly.  This is not one of those times.  Anyone who watched even a single episode of this season’s Ultimate Fighter knows that these two women can’t stand each other.  When the two fought for the Strikeforce Title in March of 2012, Rousey finished Tate with a first round armbar, which is exactly how all seven of her pro fights have ended.  There’s no doubt that Rousey is the better fighter here, shown by her gaudy -1000 odds, but when betting you are always looking for value. You aren’t going to find a fighter with +650 odds with much more value than Tate.  Rousey’s odds are inflated by her name recognition amongst casual fans, and Tate is much better than odds makers are giving her credit for.  Tate had Rousey in trouble the first go-around, getting her back early on, plus Rousey has never been past the first round. Tate +650 is worth the risk for a lucrative payout.

Anderson Silva (-125) vs Chris Weidman (+105)

It’s not very often you can get the world champion of a division as an underdog, and that alone is tempting.  But it’s also not very often that Anderson Silva is in a fight in which he isn’t the champ.  Weidman won the first round in the first fight, then finished Silva with a brutal knockout in the second round.  But the fight is still viewed by many as a fluke, due to Silva’s whacky antics.  Those same antics led to him becoming the best fighter on the planet, and unlike some I don’t see him changing his ways.  The Spider will be back and as good as ever. Weidman has the wrestling advantage, but Silva will dominate the standup.  Getting one of the pound-for-pound greats at only -125 is as good a value as one can ask for.  It seems inevitable that Silva will get his belt back Saturday night.  

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