Free Picks: UFC 161
... But where else can we find value in our UFC odds?
We’ve been on a roll lately in our UFC picks, picking winners in six straight fights. Let’s see how we can continue to fatten up our bankroll at Bet365.com.
Rashad Evans vs. Dan Henderson
There was a time not long ago when Rashad Evans was hands down my favorite fighter in the UFC. But then along came Jon Jones and Evans faded not only in my mind but, not so coincidentally, in his UFC career. The man just hasn’t been the same since he was dominated by his onetime friend and protégé. His last “effort” was perhaps the least inspiring of his career when he listlessly plodded around the Octagon for three rounds en route to a unanimous decision loss to Antonio Nogueira.
Dan Henderson is a legend in MMA, but how long can you keep fighting at an elite level? Hendo is closing in on 43 years of age and he will be throwing down with an elite mat master in Rashad Evans yet it’s impossible to dismiss him off of his recent performances. Henderson reeled off four straight victories before dropping a split decision to Lyoto Machida at UFC 157.
Evans is installed as the slight favorite in this fight at -125 and I believe that’s a fair number. While I’m not overly enthused about backing a fighter who has looked less than enthusiastic himself, I do believe Evans is too good not bounce back. Evans is one of the few fighters who may indeed possess an advantage over Henderson on the ground though doesn’t have his devastating knockout power. I will side with Evans in a five round decision.
Play Evans -125 for your sports picks at Bet365.com
Roy Nelson vs. Stipe Miocic
If you don’t know Roy Nelson then I welcome you to the UFC. Nelson is a fan favorite because he looks strikingly similar to the beer guzzling fans who worship him. He has tremendous knockout power and if newcomer Stipe Miocic takes that power for granted, he will be taking a quick, violent nap.
Miocic has a granite chin and he’ll need it in this one. But he also has ground skills and a very skilled Muay Thai repertoire. He suffered his first professional loss in his last bout to Stefan Struve but that’s not worrisome to me because Struve is a seasoned UFC veteran and an avalanche of a man.
Nelson is getting older, has taken a ton of damage in his career and may not be able to get inside of Miocic’s seven inch reach advantage. We hear the dog barking in this one.
Play Miocic +200 in your at Bet365.com
Pat Barry vs. Shawn Jordan
Bombs away! These two power packed heavyweights will throw early and often so don’t go to the refrigerator while this one is on. Pick your poison because both fighters have the ability to put the other one on his back and fast.
I am going to side with Shawn Jordan here simply because he’s got a bit of a wrestling background that may keep Barry slightly at bay. This one’s a crapshoot but it’s also sizing up as one of the best fights on the card.
Jake Shields vs. Tyron Woodley
Shields was a big deal in his younger days at Strikeforce, if you call being the middleweight champion a big deal…and we do. But that was then and this is now with a younger and stronger Tyron Woodley ready to improve upon his 11-1 record. Shields will be the big name opponent that Woodley needs to add to his resume. The former Strikeforce champ will be a tough guy for Woodley to knockout but don’t be surprised if he does just that!