UFC Picks: Upcoming Fights Worth a Wager While Dana White Beats Latest Scandal

Swinging Johnson

Monday, February 23, 2015 7:01 PM GMT

Monday, Feb. 23, 2015 7:01 PM GMT

Another dirty test came back to rankle UFC executives when Anderson Silva tested positive after his victorious return to the Octagon last month but the machine keeps chugging along as we preview some important matches to include in our upcoming UFC picks.

UFC 184 – Cat Zingano vs. Ronda Rousey
Zingano may be undefeated but not for long. The only woman capable of dethroning Ms. Rousey is the seemingly invincible Invicta FC Women’s Featherweight champion Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino (formerly Santos). Rousey is once again a prohibitive favorite as the UFC Women’s Bantamweight queen is being offered at -1000 in UFC odds. While Zingano certainly has a puncher’s chance with five KO’s/TKO’s in her nine wins she won’t be able to put her mat mastery on display because that is a world reserved for the sublime grappling and submission skills of Rowdy Ronda. Cat has nowhere to go but for the champ’s face but she will be upside down and flat on her back before she gets there.

UFC Picks: Rousey -1000 by submission.

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UFC 184 – Gleison Tibau vs. Tony Ferguson
Gleison Tibau (33-10) is stepping in for Yancy Medeiros (foot injury) in this lightweight clash with Tony Ferguson (17-3) and it doesn’t bode well for his chances to make it four-in-a-row. Ferguson is a former NCAA wrestler who can submit an opponent as he did in his last fight against Abel Trujillo (2nd round rear-naked choke) or bring the pain with a fistic array of volcanic explosion as he did when he sent Katsunori Kikuno to sleep at UFC 173 in the first round.

Tibau’s last two wins have come via split decision and taking this fight on short notice against a murderer like Ferguson will most likely wind up with someone on the floor looking up and not given to the judges to decide.

UFC Picks: Tony Ferguson -210 by knockout.

 

UFC 185 - Rafael Dos Anjos vs. Anthony Pettis  
This one ought to be a dandy ladies and gentlemen. On March 14th the UFC Lightweight title will be on the line as the champ Anthony Pettis defends his crown against the surging Rafael dos Anjos. It’s amazing how far Pettis has come since, as the reigning WEC champion, he assimilated into the UFC after their merger.

Wander back only a few years ago when Pettis lost to lightweight gatekeeper Clay Guida by unanimous decision and then followed with a split decision win over Jeremy Stephens, another UFC veteran tough guy but certainly not championship ilk. Since then Pettis has finished his last four opponents including Joe Lauzon, Donald “Cowboy” Cerrone, Benson Henderson to claim the UFC Lightweight title and most recently a thoroughly dominating performance over the legendary Gilbert Melendez which culminated in a second-round submission.

Rafael dos Anjos is on a similar trajectory. Since losing by unanimous decision to the steamrolling Khabib Nurmagomedov in April of last year as a +250 underdog in UFC odds dos Anjos has rolled to a TKO of Jason High and then scored a big win for those that included him in their UFC picks as a +270 underdog when he knocked out former lightweight king Ben Henderson in the opening round earning him a Performance of the Night bonus. In his last foray into the Octagon he manhandled Nate Diaz at a 160 pound catchweight leading to a lopsided unanimous decision victory.

The UFC odds offered on this currently have Pettis as a -400 favorite and rightfully so. The difference in this match could be the vastly improved takedown defense of Anthony Pettis and the fistful of dynamite he’s been packing. Similarly, dos Anjos decided to eschew the ground game and simply prove he could outbox and out-strike a guy like Nate Diaz and he did so beautifully. This should be a terrific fight but Pettis will need to get his motor running from the opening bell because dos Anjos has been starting fast recently. Nevertheless, I believe Pettis will be too much standing up and dos Anjos, once getting outboxed, will try to take this fight to the ground. Pettis won’t allow it and in the end the champ will retain his title.

UFC Picks: Pettis -400 in a knockout.

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