MMA Betting: Don't Wear Rose-Colored Glasses at UFC 201

Karolina Kowalkiewicz

Jason Lake

Friday, July 29, 2016 3:58 PM UTC

Friday, Jul. 29, 2016 3:58 PM UTC

For the best value on the MMA odds board, check out the props for Saturday's UFC 201 card in Atlanta. There's a Women's Strawweight fight that deserves your attention.

So UFC 200 is in the books. It was a very interesting show, to say the least, and as it turned out, we made a profit with our UFC picks here at the ranch. We went 3-1 on the props market for a total of 0.85 betting units; the only whiff was in the fight between Sage Northcutt and Enrique Morin, who failed to settle matters inside the distance (–215). Looks like the Northcutt Express needs some fine-tuning.

The three picks we did get right weren't terribly difficult. They involved the three areas of the sport that are most open to exploitation by savvy bettors: the women, the heavyweights, and the smaller guys. Conveniently enough, all three will be represented this Saturday at UFC 201 in Atlanta Gee Eh. Let's see which props on the UFC odds board are worth a gander at this time around.


Heavyweight: Anthony Hamilton vs. Damian Grabowski
On the flip side, heavyweights aren't built for longer fights. They don't have the same stamina or speed as their lighter counterparts, and they carry a lot more punching power. Hamilton (14-5 lifetime, 2-3 UFC) did go the distance in his last two fights, but Grabowski (20-3 lifetime, 0-1 UFC), the former M-1 champion and another Polish product, hasn't gone the full three rounds since 2013. Only four of his 23 career fights were decided by the judges. We'll buy that for a dollar.

Free UFC Pick: Fight doesn't go to decision (–260)
Best Line Offered: at Sportbet

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Flyweight: Ian McCall vs. Justin Scoggins
When I said “smaller guys” in the intro, I meant the three divisions the UFC added in 2010 (Featherweight and Bantamweight) and 2012 (Flyweight). The smaller the fighters get, the more likely they are to go the distance. McCall (13-5-1 lifetime, 2-3-1 UFC) is especially liable to take the full 15 minutes. “Uncle Creepy” has gone the distance in each of his six UFC fights; Scoggins (11-2 lifetime, 4-2 UFC) has a black belt in karate, and used to win a lot via strikes on the South Carolina circuit, but four of his last five UFC fights went the distance.

Free UFC Pick: Fight goes to decision (–215)
Best Line Offered: at Sportbet

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Women's Strawweight: Rose Namajunas vs. Karolina Kowalkiewicz
The popular Namajunas (5-2 lifetime, 3-0 UFC) is a –225 favorite in the nominal co-main event, but she's facing an undefeated opponent in Kowalkiewicz (9-0 lifetime, 2-0 UFC), a Krav Maga expert from Poland. You don't mess with the Krav Maga. This should be an interesting technical fight, possibly a stalemate between Namajunas the grappler and Kowalkiewicz the defensive striker. We'll go for the extra payout by taking the underdog to win by decision, which she did against grapplers Randa Markos (–210) and Heather Jo Clark (+200) in her first two UFC fights.

Free UFC Pick: Kowalkiewicz by decision (+250)
Best Line Offered: at SportsInteraction
Record: 7-0 ML, 1-1 Totals, 4-1 Props (+10.35 units)

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