Knock Out The Books With These UFC 198 Preliminary Card Picks

Jason Lake

Friday, May 13, 2016 6:47 PM UTC

Friday, May. 13, 2016 6:47 PM UTC

This Saturday's UFC 198 show in Brazil has some very interesting fights on the undercard. Does Demian Maia belong in our MMA picks? Nate Marquardt? How about Little Nog?

Here's an interesting prop bet for you: Will Zuffa actually sell the UFC by the end of the year? Bovada has YES priced at +150 on the MMA odds board, with NO pegged at –200, so maybe Dana White was truthful about the promotion not being on the block. But if it is, Bovada also has an over/under of $3.99 billion for the sale price.

We're tempted to recommend YES and OVER for your UFC picks, but for now, let's stay away from the exotics and focus on the preliminary card for Saturday's UFC 198 pay-per-view in Brazil. There are some good fights on here – well, interesting fights, at least. First up: the “main event” of the undercard, which you can watch on Fox Sports 1 as it happens.

Welterweight: Demian Maia vs. Matt Brown
Maia (22-6 lifetime, 16-6 UFC) is one of the best fighters never to win a UFC belt. He was blocked by Anderson Silva in the Middleweight division, then moved to Welterweight four years ago. Last December's very impressive decision over Gunnar Nelson (–145 at the close) should get Maia back on title track, but first, he needs to put away Brown (20-13 lifetime, 13-7 UFC) this Saturday.

It'll probably happen. Brown has had his ups and downs in the Octagon, and this particular clash of styles isn't in his favor. Maia has a 4th-degree black belt in Brazilian jiu-jitsu, and he's a crafty southpaw to boot. Brown's takedown defense is pretty good (60 percent), but nine of his 13 career losses were by submission – eight of those via some kind of choke. There's been heavy chalk dumped on Maia's UFC odds the past few days. I can see why.
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Free MMA Pick: Maia +280
Best Line Offered: at Ladbrokes


A Nog's as Good as a Wink to a Blind Bat
Nate Marquardt (34-15-2 lifetime, 13-10-1 UFC) was the Middleweight champion in Pancrase. Then he won the Strikeforce Welterweight title. Alas, Marquardt was another one of Silva's victims, and he's 2-4 in his latest UFC run. He'll probably lose again to Thiago Santos (12-3 lifetime, 4-2 UFC) on Saturday, but Santos doesn't have much of a CV, or much betting value at –400. Pass.

The biggest name on the undercard – literally and figuratively – belongs to Antonio Rogerio Nogueira (21-7 lifetime, 4-3 UFC), aka Little Nog, aka Minotouro. But it's been a while since the 39-year-old was at his peak, back in the days of PRIDE. Nogueira is on the Fight Pass portion of Saturday's event, and he's a +205 underdog for his Light Heavyweight bout against Patrick Cummins (8-3 lifetime, 4-3 UFC). However, Cummins isn't all that. We'll take a feel-good flyer on the Brazilian legend, and may the Octagon be with you.

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Free MMA Pick: Nogueira +285
Best Line Offered: at BetOnline
Record: 1-0 ML, 1-1 Totals (+1.00 units)


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