UFC 204: Bisping vs Henderson 2- ”The Count is Down, But Not Out”

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The end of an era and the continuance of an unlikely title reign highlighted UFC 204. Despite getting cracked with a couple of H-bombs, Michael Bisping was able to retain his Middleweight title and gain a measure of revenge against an old foe. Dan Henderson didn’t leave the cage with UFC gold, but he certainly walks away as an all-time great of the sport. Vitor Belfort hinted at retirement, lost via TKO, and then left fans unsure if they will see the Phenom again. I went a perfect 5-0 on the main card to help overcome a pretty terrible start to the night. Let’s take a look at some potential fights for the key competitors from Saturday night in Manchester.

Michael Bisping vs winner of Rockhold/Jacare

Of all the current champions, I get the feeling that Bisping is viewed as the most vulnerable- which is understandable. The Champ has lost to multiple fighters ranked below him and has a murders row of challengers lining up to take their shot at the gold. This fight seems like it is the most appropriate, with Rockhold getting his third crack at the Brit with the series tied at one. If Souza gets the job done, he is long overdue to fight for the title and would have just a single defeat over his last 11-fights.

Dan Henderson- Retirement

It has been a long run and while he came up just short against Bisping, Dan put on a hell of a show. I was nervous that if he won the title, he might have opted to continue his career despite his earlier indications. Henderson will go down as one of the all-time greats of the sport, despite never capturing a UFC title.

Gegard Mousasi vs Derek Brunson

My original inclination was to pair up Mousasi with the winner of Weidman and Romero, which is certainly an option. I also wouldn’t be opposed to a fight Anderson Silva as Gegard mentioned after the fight. I went with this option for a couple of reason. This fight had been scheduled for UFC 200 before Brunson pulled out, so I would like to see it revisited. Both men are looking to crack the upper echelon of the division and the winner of this fight could conceivably be paired with the winner of Weidman/Romero for a future shot at the title.

Vitor Belfort vs Anderson Silva

There were rumours that Vitor was going to walk away from MMA after the Mousasi fight, but unless I missed something- Vitor hasn’t officially announced anything. I’m glad he didn’t, as it was Hendo’s night to call it a career. If he does want another bout, rematching Anderson would be a great headliner for a Brazil Fight Night. Both legends are in decline and no longer legit title contenders based on the number of fighters ahead of them. That being said, Bisping’s title hopes looked bleak after the Rockhold loss. Win or lose, Belfort could call it a career at home and make his own exit from the game.

Jimi Manuwa vs winner of Bader/Nogueira

Knocking out OSP is easily the biggest win of his career, but where does he go from here. Jimi already has fought and badly lost to Gustafsson and Rumble, and Glover is coming off of a loss. Both Bader and Little Nog represent winnable fights for Manuwa and neither would be considered a step back after a big win.

Ovince St. Preux vs Corey Anderson

OSP has lost back to back fights and his only win over his last four came via decision over Rafael Feijao. That isn’t a strong run, to say the least. Anderson is coming off of a tough loss in Brazil to Shogun, which many felt he should have won. Ilir Latifi is another option.

Stefan Struve vs Josh Barnett

The big man picked up a nice win over a tough opponent who have never been finished before. Struve appears to be regaining his form from his early success. Neither Stefan nor Barnett are directly in line for a shot at the title, but considering neither has fought for the strap or lost to the current champ- a couple of wins could change that. Even more beneficial, Struve has a win over Miocic which creates in a built-in storyline should they eventually be paired up.

Mirsad Bektic vs Dennis Bermudez

It was a quick win over an over-matched opponent, but it was a much-needed return to action for Bektic. Mirsad has struggled to remain active in the UFC, so he needs to take advantage of this and get back in the cage soon. The division as stagnated a bit with the Champ fighting elsewhere, Aldo at odds with the brass, Edgar coming off a one-sided loss, and Mendez suspended. If Bektic could pick up a win over Bermudez it would inject a brand new contender into the mix and help shake things up a bit.

Iuri Alcantara vs Eddie Wineland

The Brazilian is on the outside looking in when it comes to the Top 15, but after an impressive win like that he needs to be given a chance to regain his spot. Eddie Wineland is also coming off a much-needed win and would be an ideal matchup for Alcantara.

Mike Perry vs Erick Silva

There is something about Mike Perry that just rubs me the wrong way, he is just an unlikeable person. Personal feelings aside, it was a pretty entertaining fight. Silva and Perry would be another fun and action filled fight.

Leonard Santos vs Joe Duffy

There are a number of talented fighters sitting outside of the top 15 in the Lightweight division. Duffy and Santos are two of those. Unfortunately for Leo, the win over Martins was far from a command performance. Duffy will force him to fight and the winner gets a shot at the Top 15.

Final Thoughts

A lot of people felt Henderson did enough to warranted the victory and that is an arguable point. I sided with the judges, but would not have been that upset if it had gone the other way. I do feel like I would like to see a few more title fights like this, with a lower ranked fighter getting an opportunity to fight for the gold. Maybe not on a PPV, but it might give the champ a bit of a break from facing a constant flow of elite talent. Just a thought. With almost a month between UFC events, this predictor is going to take a well-deserved break and recharge the batteries before an action packed 2-month finish to the year.

Parlay Header

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Parlay #1 Low Risk
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Selection 1: Davey Grant -175 
Selection 2: Albert Tumenov -230 
Selection 3: Adriano Martins -195 
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Price: +241 Bet: 10 units
Payout: 24.11 units
 
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Parlay #2 High Risk
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Selection 1: Davey Grant -175 
Selection 2: Albert Tumenov -230 
Selection 3: Adriano Martins -195 
Selection 4: Stefan Struve -170 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
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Price: +442 Bet: 7 units
Payout: 30.92 units
 
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Brad Pickett +148 
Selection 2: Jimi Manuwa +147 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 3: Danny Roberts -135 
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Price: +966  x Bet: 6 units 
Payout: 57.98 units
 
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Michael Bisping/Dan Henderson Total Rounds Under 2.5 -125 
Selection 2: Davey Grant to Win by Decision +150 
Selection 3: Albert Tumenov to Win by Decision +225 
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Price: +1363  x Bet: 6 units
Payout: 81.75 units
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Lukasz Sajewski/Marc Diakiese Total Rounds Under 2.5 +130 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 2: Adriano Martins to Win by TKO/KO/DQ +240 
Selection 3: Brad Pickett/Iuri Alcantara Total Rounds Over 2.5 -170 
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Price: +1142  x Bet: 6 units 
Payout: 68.52 units
 
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Parlay #2
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Selection 1: Stefan Struve/Daniel Omielanczuk Total Rounds Over 1.5 -145 
Selection 2: Vitor Belfort/Gegard Mousasi Total Rounds Over 1.5 +122 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 3: Danny Roberts -135 
Selection 4: Davey Grant -175 
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Price: +926  x Bet: 8 units
Payout: 74.09

 

Draftkings Line up

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Kamikaze
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Fighter 1: Marc Diakiese $9000 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 2:  Adriano Martins $8600 
Fighter 3: Danny Roberts $8100 
Fighter 4: Gegard Mousasi $9400 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 5: Jimi Manuwa $7800 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 6: Dan Henderson 
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Salary Remaining:
 
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Subs
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Fighter 1: Davey Grant $8800
Fighter 2: Albert Tumenov $9200
Fighter 3: 
 
 
 

 

Michael Bisping -210 vs Dan Henderson +210 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Bisping should win this fight, but I’m not ruling out the possibility that Henderson can’t catch him and knock him out. Bisping has developed into a more confident fighter capable of dealing with adversity. His ability to defend and then settle back into his offensive rhthym will be the key here. Henderson wants to create chaos and hope to land something during the exchange. I’m not willing to risk a top play on Bisping retaining his title at this price, he could work into a Silver play or possibly a prop in Bronze secition.

Draft-Kings-Logo

After going over multiple scenarios- I decided that the best course of action based on the prices was to include Henderson at $7100. I have my eye on several options, but they don’t fit together under the budget. Realistically, Henderson is not going to win a decision. If he wins this fight it will be via knockout in probably the 1st or 2nd round. By using Henderson it does allow me to play a couple of other options that are a little more costly, but have solid scoring potential.

 

Vitor Belfort +294 vs Gegard Mousasi- 321 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

This is a No Play for me. Mousasi should win this fight as long as Belfort doesn’t land that one big fight changing strike. There are prop bet options here, but the side is a pass.

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Mousasi is slightly more expensive than I am willing to pay, but he is an alternative option. With $100 leftover on my current team I could swap out Rob Font for Mousasi, but I feel Font has much higher scoring potential against a less dangerous opponent.

**Update- With Font/Entwistle scrapped due to an illness to the Brit, Mousasi draws into my lineup.

Ovince Saint Preux -148 vs Jimi Manuwa +147 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Manuwa has a pair of devastating UFC losses- to the elite of the division. That shouldn’t write him off against the rest of the division, which includes this fight. OSP doesn’t have a great record in decisions which is a product of his lower than average striking output and less than overwhelming wrestling game. As his fights advance, he tends to slow down, his technique fails a little, and he gets sloppy both offensively and defensively. Manuwa isn’t a cardio horse himself, but he is a more refined striker and works at a better rate. He also throws his offense with more impact. While OSP could very well crack him with a body kick or hurt him during an exchange, I am counting on Manuwa to be the busier and more impactful fighter. A stoppage victory or decision will be the product for the “Poster Boy”.  Silver Parlay

Draft-Kings-Logo

Manuwa has 13 wins by knockout, including 3 in the UFC. OSP routinely holds his hands low and throws a lot of kicks with minimal setup and his chin exposed. That could be enough for Jimi to land a crisp counter and score the finish. Again, with the prices we have on this card we need to invest wisely. Manuwa has good finishing potential and is relatively inexpensive. I like him.

Stefan Struve -170 vs Daniel Omielanczuk +158 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Omielanczuk is filling in on short notice, which could impact his cardio. He has never been finished, but if he starts to slow down in the second half of this fight he is going to struggle to take a decision win. It is hard to take much from the Bigfoot win, but I feel like Struve is going to start rounding himself back into the form we saw before his medical issues put him out of action. He has a massive height and reach advantage, which should further diminish the connection rate of his opponent. Omielanczuk also has had issues on the mat and Struve is a pretty capable grappler. He isn’t known for his wrestling, but if they do hit the mat look for the Dutch fighter to get the better of the action. Struve shuts down the majority of his opponents offense and keeps his chin out of danger- Gold Play.

Draft-Kings-Logo

I’m going to pass here because Omielanczuk has never been finished and if they do go the distance, the output numbers won’t be great.

Mirsad Bektic -588 vs Russell Doane +587 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Nothing worth playing here- Bektic should take this fight with ease but the juice is not worth the squeeze.

Draft-Kings-Logo

See Above.

Brad Pickett +148 vs Iuri Alcantara -158 

This is one of those fights where I was originally on one fighter, but switched late in the game. I kept looking at how these guys paired up and while I was leaning towards Alcantara, I couldn’t come up with a solid explanation for him winning this fight without a stoppage. Pickett gets hit a lot, but he carries a superior work rate and is more effect over the entire fight. Alcantara looks to pick his spots early and will slow down/ become less active later in the fight. When you figure in his less than stellar TDD and Pickett’s completion numbers during his victories and it is hard to see where Iuri scores enough to take a decision. Pickett is also fighting at home which, as we saw against Rivera, could be a key factor in a close fight. I like Pickett here in a close fight, but a little more definitive than his last win. Silver Play.

Draft-Kings-Logo

I thought about backing Pickett, but I expect to see this fight going the distance so it is a pass for me.

Davey Grant -175 vs Damian Stasiak +164 

Grant looked decent in his return after a massive layoff, but I expect him to look even better here. Grant is an aggressive grappler with a solid submission game. Stasiak struggled tremendously with the mat game of Meza, who routinely out-scrambled him on the mat. Grant should be able to replicate those issues again. If the fight is contested on the feet, Grant is far more active as a striker- working his way to the inside with high volume boxing barrages. Stasiak relies on his karate-based kicking arsenal to do the majority of his work. With Grant closing the distance so frequently, it will limit the changes that Stasiak has to unload with his kicks. Grant outworks him everywhere start to finish. Gold Play.

Draft-Kings-Logo

I had Grant in my lineup for a while, but Stasiak has never been finished which pushed me away. He is still worth a look; his striking volume, takedowns, and advancement on the mat will produce points. I’ve got him as a sub.

Leon Edwards +226 vs Albert Tumenov -230 

This should be a fun scrap and will most likely come down to the impact that Tumenov puts behind his strikes. For starters, both men will benefit from not facing a wrestling heavy opponent. I could see some clinch fighting, but most of the action should take place at distance. Edwards has a solid boxing repertoire, but I feel the Russian can match him with his hands and use his kicks to effectively augment his attack. I also give Albert the edge in power. When he fought Musoke, both men were landing, but he was simply doing more damage with his offense. I have Tumenov to get back on track and he does it as part of my Gold parlay.

Draft-Kings-Logo

Tumenov has absolute brutal power and if he connects he is fully capable of putting anyone on ice. His kicking offense will be available considering there isn’t a real threat of double getting shot back his way. I do like his chances of scoring the stoppage or at the very least putting up his decent output points, but he is a little costly- I’ve got him as a sub.

Danny Roberts -135 vs Mike Perry +123 

I don’t like Mike Perry, but I gave him a fair shake to win this fight. He most likely needs to do it by knockout or a series of knockdowns to win rounds. Perry has power, but he throws a lot of single strikes when doing so. He has also be known to admire his work a little too much at times. He got away with that approach against a defensively weak Lim, but that won’t be the case against Roberts. Roberts is far more technical and will use his reach and jab to short circuit the power punches of Perry. The American is known for going deep in fights either, so his explosive style and heavily muscled physique probably won’t hold up well as the minutes pass. I don’t like pulling the trigger on a Gold parlay with fighters still early in their UFC careers, Silver Parlay.

Draft-Kings-Logo

Roberts has 10-career finishes, split evenly between knockouts and submission. He knows how to finish. If we don’t get a stoppage, look for Roberts to mount some pretty decent offense against a fighter at a technical disadvantage. At $8100, he is pretty economical and gives us a little extra cash to spend elsewhere.

Leonardo Santos +200 vs Adriano Martins -195 

I love Martins here. Yes, he is near -200, over that mark on some sites, but he is a great bet. He is a dangerous striker, with good timing and power. His counter wrestling is very good and he can go offensive as well. Santos has improved just enough on the feet to get himself in some trouble here. Once the striking doesn’t go his way, Leo will try to transition to his ground skills but I don’t see him taking Martins off his mat with much ease. This is Martins fight to win in almost all scenarios and I really like this price- Gold Play.

Draft-Kings-Logo

Martins grabs the second last spot in my Fantasy lineup. I don’t see him subbing Santos, but KOing him is certainly in the cards. With the power he has in his hands at $8600 he is a steal! Sign him up.

Lukasz Sajewski +210 vs Marc Diakiese -210  12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

We have a debuting fighter against a guy making his third UFC appearance without a win in the UFC. Diakiese is a dangerous looking fighter, but he is untested at the UFC level which creates a lot of uncertainty of how he will do here. Sajewski is tough and has shown improvements, but he isn’t a great athlete and that has cost him in previous outings. With the short notice factor, I just don’t think Sajewski can win a fight that doesn’t end via an early submission. The Brit is too quick and hits too hard, with too capable a striking attack. Burns hurt Sajewski, Diakiese will as well. I’m probably not going to invest too much into the side bet here, but I will take a look at the prop options.

Draft-Kings-Logo

I do have Diakiese fitted into the final spot in my Fantasy lineup. I like his speed and I like his power. He has a pair of back to back quick knockout wins coming in which suggests he is finding his stopping power. I think he gets the finish here and isn’t well-known which adds to his value as most will look past him.

 

 

1. Mirsad Bektic -588 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

2. Davey Grant -175 

3. Gegard Mousasi- 321 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

4. Adriano Martins -195 

5. Albert Tumenov -230 

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6. Michael Bisping -210 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

7. Marc Diakiese -210 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

8. Stefan Struve -170 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

9. Danny Roberts -135 

10. Brad Pickett +148 

11. Jimi Manuwa +147 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

 

1. Brad Pickett +148 

2. Jimi Manuwa +147 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

3. Adriano Martins to Win by TKO/KO/DQ +240 

4. Davey Grant to Win by Decision +150 

5. Michael Bisping/Dan Henderson Total Rounds Under 2.5 -125 

1. Dan Henderson to Win by TKO/KO/DQ +300:  This is a great fade option if you get to the main event and just need Bisping to cash. Dan wins this fight only one way.

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bETTING SCENARIOS

Exclusive Bet Pack Information.

 

Prop Bets

 

Michael Bisping/Dan Henderson 

See Betting Scenario Section.

Vitor Belfort/Gegard Mousasi Total Rounds Over 1.5 +122 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Belfort has a long track record of quick fights, with 5 consecutive bouts ending inside the first 5-minutes- 4 ending with Vitor’s hand raised. I don’t think that will be the case here- either scenario. I don’t think Vitor is going to knockout Mousasi, he is too good defensively and has an iron chin. Mousasi could return the favour and stop Vitor, but I expect to see him be a little more cautious on the feet to avoid getting caught. There is also the possibility that we see Moose take him down and grind out top position to remove the striking threat from Belfort. A quick finish isn’t out of the question, but I like the value here.

Ovince Saint Preux/Jimi Manuwa Total Round Over 1.5 +120 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Both guys can finish, but their recent track records suggest this fight should be lined closer to 2.5 rounds. OSP’s last 3 fights have gone 5,3, and 3 rounds. Manuwa has hit round 2 or more in 5 of his last 6 fights., including the first decision win of his career. Both guys have finishing abilities and can be finished, but both men will recognize that and fight accordingly. Manuwa isn’t going to rush in to avoid getting put on the floor and OSP tends to strike a little more conservatively under the threat of striking power. A finish certainly could materialize, but I like the Over 1.5 here.

Stefan Struve/Daniel Omielanczuk Total Rounds Over 1.5 -145 

It should tell you something when a Heavyweight bout is listed less than even money for the Over. Omielanczuk has never been finished in his career. Struve could change that, but its a solid stat to build an Over bet on. Struve has gone to the 3rd round in 3 of his last 5 fights, including a pair of decisions in his last 3 outings. He doesn’t have an overwhelming pace, but he can still do damage if he connects. Omielanczuk has some pop, but not a tonne of volume and the reach of Struve (his defense is getting better) will keep him on the outside. This fight ha legit potential to be a bit of a groaner. Play the Over.

Brad Pickett/Iuri Alcantara 

See Betting Scenario Section.

Davey Grant to Win by Decision +150 

Despite the fact that Grant has just a single decision win, I like this play a lot. That solo decision victory came in his last fight and he has had a jump in cage time over his 2 fight UFC run compared to his earlier career numbers. Stasiak has never been finished and is pretty durable. Grant showed he can put it on an opponent, but he wasn’t able to get Vera out of there- I like this fight to hit the scorecards.

Albert Tumenov to Win by Decision +225 

With the type of power that Tumenov presents it is dangerous to bet on him going a full 15-minutes, but that is why we are getting such a solid return. Edwards is a Southpaw which could take away some of the stopping power that Tumenov offers. Edwards has never been stopped and the last 2-times that Tumenov has faced rangier striking based fighters he went to the scorecards. This fight should produce some exciting striking exchanges, but I’ll take it to go the distance.

Leonardo Santos/Adriano Martins 

See Betting Scenario Section.

Lukasz Sajewski/Marc Diakiese 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

See Betting Scenario Section.

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