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UFC 250 Co-Main Event: Cody Garbrandt vs. Raphael Assuncao | Preview and MMA Picks

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UFC 250 Co-Main Event: Cody Garbrandt vs. Raphael Assuncao | Preview and MMA Picks
Raphael Assuncao (R). Sam Wasson/Getty Images/AFP

The Ultimate Fighting Championship returns to action and the bantamweights are ready to throw down in the co-main event of the evening. UFC Odds are live for the event, here’s a complete preview featuring Cody Garbrandt and Raphael Assuncao, including updated odds and our betting pick.

Raphael Assuncao vs. Cody Garbrandt

Saturday, June 06, 2020 – 11:30 PM EDT

Opening Line: Garbrandt at Sportsbook Review

As the coronavirus pandemic restrictions begin to ease worldwide, UFC President Dana White continues to provide our weekends with plenty of action-packed martial arts entertainment. On the 6th of June, the UFC will return to Las Vegas, but this time it’ll be live from the UFC Apex Centre.

In the co-main event of the evening, the bantamweights will take centre stage; as Cody Garbrandt will be looking to avenge his prior x3 losing streak when he steps in the octagon against Raphael Assuncao. With plenty of betting lines and markets currently available, let’s attempt to find some value in this weekend’s UFC 250 co-main event.

Cody Garbrandt. Mike Stobe/Getty Images/AFP

Cody ‘No Love’ Garbrandt

Former boxer and former UFC Bantamweight champion, Cody Garbrandt, will make another long-awaited return to the octagon this weekend. After dethroning the anomaly that was Dominick Cruz back in 2016, a 25-year-old Cody was on top of the world.

That was until TJ Dillashaw came along to spoil the party. After defeating Cody on two occasions (both by KO/TKO) the name ‘No Love’ became all too real for Cody.

Born and raised in Ohio, USA, Cody’s love for the sport began with boxing at a young age. A state wrestling championship was added to Cody’s list of achievements during high-school as he persuaded his mother to let him take boxing seriously, once again.

Although he didn’t finish his final two years wrestling in school, he received All-American honors and was offered the chance to compete at NCAA Division I level. Garbrandt would later sign with UFC after an extremely successful/undefeated amateur and professional MMA career.

Since turning pro, Garbrandt has 14 fights with 3 losses. The three losses on his record are from his previous three fights, leading critics to believe that his durability has gone at a young age. This, of course, can be argued and is nothing but an opinion. That said, If Garbrandt continues to suffer such devastating knockouts, he might have to hang the gloves up at a young age.

Octagon Strengths

  • Striking offense
  • Striking speed, defensive footwork
  • Great cardio
  • Might not yet have reached his prime

Octagon Weaknesses

  • Weak chin
  • Hasn’t won since his first loss
  • Has had just three fights in four years
Raphael Assuncao (top). Sam Wasson/Getty Images/AFP

Raphael Assuncao

Raphael Assuncao is a true staple of the UFC Bantamweight division, a decade-long career under the UFC banner has put the Brazilian against the world’s best.

Currently ranked #5 in the UFC Bantamweight division, Assuncao is reaching the back-end of his career and his championship title opportunities are probably behind him. Aged 37, how much more can Assuncao give to the fans?

His most recent bouts have remained competitive, but even through his successes, he’s seemed to be a step or two slower than he previously was, which is expected with any aging fighter, besides Yoel Romero of course.

Octagon Strengths

  • BJJ Black Belt
  • Huge experience advantage
  • Should have the power advantage

Octagon Weaknesses

  • 37 years old
  • Fast strikers

Final Betting Thoughts

The nickname ‘No Love’ seems to have flipped reversed its true meaning; because nobody is showing Cody any love what so ever. Since his decline, critics and analysts alike have slated the former champion’s durability inside the octagon. Is that fair? I don’t think so.

We have a fighter who, yes, has had three successive knockout losses, but two of those came up against a juiced TJ Dillashaw (juiced=steroids), then his most recent loss to Pedro Munoz came from a stupid mistake by Cody at
the end of the round. He decided to stand and bang, leaving his chin open for a heavy-handed striker to connect with, and that’s exactly what Munoz did.

The strong takedown offense of Assuncao shouldn’t cause Cody too many problems, with zero submission defeats, his time spent wrestling, and then training with Team Alpha Male gives Cody the skills to keep this fight on the feet.

So, what problems can Assuncao present for Cody? Not many in my opinion, other than a potential shock knockout win, I think this is Cody’s fight to lose. Recency-bias shouldn’t be taken into consideration, it’s not like Cody has taken fights too soon. After each knockout loss, he’s taken a
minimal year break, giving him the best chance at coming back as strong as ever.

I understand we’re taking a risk here, but gun to my head, Cody Garbrandt walks away with his first win since 2016… and who knows if we’ve seen Cody in his prime yet. My UFC pick is Cody via Sportsbook Review.