UFC Fight Night 101 - Robert Whittaker vs. Derek Brunson Offers Best Value Odds

Derek Brunson inside the octagon

Andreas Hale

Friday, November 25, 2016 3:21 PM GMT

It’s Thanksgiving weekend in the States but there will be UFC action emanating over in the Land Down Under as UFC Fight Night 101 takes place in Melbourne, Australia. It’s not a card littered with recognizable names, but that doesn’t mean we won’t be able to find betting value for this event.

 

Much of the card features names that you may not be familiar with. But, aside from that, the betting lines don’t hold a ton of value. You’ll be hard pressed to find anything tantalizing from UFC Fight Night 101 but the main event may have something for you with an intriguing matchup between Robert Whitaker and Derek Brunson.

 

Brunson -- 3-time Division II All-American Wrestler – has been on a surge as of late with five straight victories and four consecutive finishes since losing to Yoel Romero nearly three years ago. His list of victims includes Sam Alvey, Ed Herman and Uriah Hall, who he flattened in under two minutes in September. As for his opponent, Whitaker is riding a five-fight winning streak of his own dating back to June 2014. He also has a victory over Uriah Hall, albeit by decision, and has beaten the likes of Rafael Natal and Brad Tavares. This will be the Aussie’s fifth fight in his home continent since joining the UFC but home field advantage may not play a big factor in this fight.

 

Here’s the interesting thing, Brunson, who is known for his wrestling credentials, has become a knockout artist and Whitaker, who was known for his power, has been effective with his wrestling and takedown defense.

With Brunson listed as a -140 favorite, there’s not enough meat on the bones to feel comfortable betting on him. Sure, he’s been scintillating as of late. But I’m not quite sure he can utilize those same tools against Whitaker. What’s worse is that the over/under of 2.5 rounds isn’t that tantalizing either with the under being no better than a -115 while the over can be found at a +100.

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What’s interesting is that Brunson has scored four straight first round finishes. But I don’t see him being able to do the same with the durable Whitaker. I like the over here, but only if you can get some value out of a + line. I predict that Brunson will use his wrestling and improved striking to narrowly take the decision but I’m not even a big fan of that line.

Honestly? I hate saying this but you might wanna steer clear of this card and look into other markets this weekend offering greater value, if you're looking for extra loot to go shopping.