Top Three UFC 189 Prop Picks

Jason Lake

Friday, July 10, 2015 6:20 PM UTC

Friday, Jul. 10, 2015 6:20 PM UTC

Still not sure which fighters to put in your UFC picks this Saturday? No sweat; here's a quick rundown and update of what we've covered so far for UFC 189 at the MGM Grand.

Finally, we're mere hours away from one of the biggest nights in combat sports. Saturday's UFC 189 pay-per-view in Las Vegas (10:00 p.m. ET) would have been even bigger had Jose Aldo not pulled out of his Featherweight title defense against Conor McGregor, but there's no use crying over bruised ribs. Chad Mendes will give McGregor a proper fight, and there are tons of other top-quality matchups on Saturday's card.

We've been carpet-bombing this major event with previews, analysis and UFC picks, so before things kick off at the MGM Grand, let's revisit what's gone down thus far and update you on any new and relevant information. Enjoy the fights, and may the Octagon be with you.


Steamy McGregor
Remember how all that money was pouring in on McGregor? It still is. As we go to press, McGregor has moved as high as –200 on our UFC odds board, up from –145 when Mendes was first announced as Aldo's replacement. People love McGregor, and for good reason: He's charismatic, he knocks people out, and he's a fresh face in a sport that thrives on new personalities.

He's also rapidly running out of value at these odds. Our colleague Swinging Johnson was more than willing to back McGregor at the lower price, but he also acknowledged that Mendes would pose a difficult challenge with his wrestling acumen, and eventually switched his allegiance to Mendes. Hard to argue with that; while McGregor has a 100-percent takedown success rate in the Octagon, that's only 5-for-5, and against substandard competition. Personally, I'm recommending the UNDER on the total of 2.5 rounds. Others believe McGregor and Mendes will cancel each other out style-wise and go the distance, and they certainly could, but we're betting otherwise here at the ranch.

Free UFC Pick: Take UNDER 2.5 Rounds (+100) at 5Dimes

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Browse the UFC 189 Betting Directory

The Distance
The UFC odds have been moving away from the favorite in Saturday's Welterweight title fight between champion Robbie Lawler and challenger Rory MacDonald. Johnson had MacDonald in his UFC picks at – 165, down from as high as –240 about a month ago. As we go to press, MacDonald is available as low as –154 at Marathon.

We see MacDonald as having many of the same “special sauce” attributes as McGregor, although in this case, people have been steering their bets in the other direction. It's hard to blame them; Lawler beat MacDonald (–410) by split decision two years ago, then went on to upset Johny Hendricks (–210) for the Welterweight title last December. We're hesitant to bet against either gentlemen, but once again, the props market is here to save us. We see yet another decision in their immediate future.

Free UFC Pick: Fight Goes 5 Round Distance: YES (–115) at Bookmaker

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Mansion on the Hill
When we looked at the undercard for UFC 189, we singled out Cathal Pendred as our pick to click in his Welterweight bout against John Howard. One of the things we cited in Pendred's favor was his association with SBG Dublin, the same camp that McGregor and Gunnar Nelson train out of. If you want success, surround yourself with successful people.

We're doubling down on Pendred after his stay at “The MacMansion.” McGregor has been training for UFC 189 at a lavish Las Vegas location, and sure enough, Pendred has been there, too. “We've got a team of 20 guys here,” Pendred told FOX Sports earlier this week. “All different sorts of coaches. We've got a masseuse. We've got chefs coming in to cook for us.” Nelson has also been there in preparation for his bout with Brandon Thatch; we had Nelson in our UFC picks, and again, we're even more encouraged thanks to the MacMansion. Jeeves, have we installed that extra hot tub yet?

Free UFC Picks: Take Pendred –105 at Pinnacle; take Nelson +155 at BetCRIS

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