UFC Fight Night 110: Lewis vs Hunt- “Beast Hunter”

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The UFC returned to Auckland for just the second time in the promotion’s history and the hometown boy did not disappoint. Local Daniel Hooker also added to his personal highlight reel with a brutal knockout finish and Daniel Kelly’s improbable run up the ranks came to an abrupt stop. Let’s take a look at what could be on tap for the big winners on Saturday night.

Mark Hunt vs Cain Velasquez

When you have been around as long as Mark Hunt has, you start running out of top level competition to face or least that is the current situation for the Super Samoan. After dispatching Lewis, Mark has now fought the Champion, #1, #3, #4, #6, and # 11 ranked opponents. A couple of fighters are booked already and Hunt could wait around to face a winner of an upcoming bout, but I like Velasquez as his next option. Hunt will most likely want some time off and Cain is still in recovery mode. Either Cain gets a big win and shakes some ring rust off in prep for a shot at the title or Hunt scores a major upset and potentially gets one final opportunity to contend for the title.

Derek Brunson vs Antonio Carlos Junior

Brunson got a raw deal against Anderson, but he made sure that wasn’t going to be the case against Dan Kelly. Where does he fit in the division right now? We keep seeing contenders knocking each other off before they can earn a shot at the title. Brunson isn’t quite there yet and I had him lined up with David Branch for his next fight, but he called out Antonio Carlos “Silva” Junior and that fight works for me. Brunson certainly would be the favourite, but Junior’s grappling skills would certainly be a new challenger for the Strikeforce alumni.

Daniel Hooker vs Olivier Aubin-Mercier

What a knee! Hooker needed to find something to turn the fight in is favour as Pearson was having success using his head movement to slip inside and land big strikes. Hooker’s style just doesn’t seem suited to outpoint opponents, but he is dangerous and the finish is always right around the corner if he can connect. Let’s pair him up with another solid regional Lightweight in OAM. Hooker’s TDD has been a major point of concern and OAM’s striking is still a work in progress. One of them figures it out for the victory.

Ion Cutelaba vs Francimar Barroso

Nguyen and Cutelaba must have been catching the same cab, because they got out of there in a hurry. Ion picks up his first win in the UFC via stoppage which was something he did with regularity on the regional scene. That type of win can really elevate a fighter. I like Cutelaba and would like to see him string together a few wins. Barroso’s style is the polar opposite of Cutelaba’s, let’s see if Ion can continue his winning ways and make that jump to the next level.

Ben Nguyen vs Ray Borg

Most of the fighters at the top of the Flyweight ranks are either booked or have fought for the title already. In a division looking for new contenders, letting former challengers like Cejudo and Benavidez take out new names is not a way to build for the future. Both guys have looked very good of late and while Borg’s name has been tossed around as Johnson’s next opponent, if not let’s pair these two up in  title eliminator.

Alexander Volkanovski vs Nick Hein

Volkanovski might be a candidate to make the cut to 145 pounds, but if not a fight with Nick Hein on a future European card would be interesting. Hein’s strong Judo background would be a nice answer for the wrestling of Volkanovski. If they stay on the feet, both guys throw heat which is also fun!

Final Thoughts

The main event tossed all kinds of sideways at us. After multiple quick finishes throughout the main card, we get a four rounder out of a fight that could have been done with one punch either way. Then we get the shocking retirement announcement from Lewis, when most would have said Hunt was the more likely to walk away all things considered. It is unfortunate if Lewis is done, but understandable.

I started the event 3-0 with wins in 5 of the first 6 fights before I crashed and burned hard on the final three fights of the night. It was a partial step in the right direction, but still a major letdown. We get an early morning affair next weekend from Singapore. Rest up and set your alarms.

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Depending on your betting style, you can select the Big Bank Roll Parlays which employs a betting strategy focussed on straight and 2-leg parlays that limit the risk and offer a decent return based on your financial commitment. If you are willing to take a little more risk and aren’t interested in putting as much cash in play, but still want a shot at a big return- then the Big Risk/ Big Reward Parlays are for you. Playing both of these strategies together is not recommended.

 

 

 

Draftkings Line up

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Fighter 1: Derek Lewis $8200 
Fighter 2: Ross Pearson $7900 
Fighter 3: Tim Elliott $8700 
Fighter 4: Dong Hyun Kim $8800 
Fighter 5: Vinc Pichel $7800 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Fighter 6: Dominique Steele $8500 
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Salary Remaining:
 
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Subs
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Fighter 1: 
Fighter 2: 
Fighter 3: 
Fighter 4: 
 
 
 

Derek Lewis -130 vs Mark Hunt +125 

I’ve got an inside connection to Lewis’s camp and after I did some tape study, I reached out and they confirmed that they are working on a strategy that reflexs what I felt was key to his success. I won’t go over it here, but if you listen to my Pocast I outlined in there. Hunt is 42 and disgruntled with his employer. That is not a good combo. He struggles off his back and Lewis only needs 1 chance on the floor to end the fight. Lewis opened somewhere around -175, but the public has come in on Hunt and moved Lewis’s value significantly. Hunt only needs 1 shot, but that is in all of his fights and those shots have been landing less and less of late. Lewis gets him down and goes for the killer. Gold Play.

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Lewis has laid a few fantasy eggs in recent fights, but when he does have it going- he puts up points. He has a finish heavy style and his ability to mount a large number of significant punches in the process of getting that finish can further add to his point productions. At $8200, the “Black Beast” is a must have.

Daniel Kelly +246 vs Derek Brunson -255 

Up next we have the King of the Underdogs and feel good story of the UFC, Daniel Kelly. Kelly continues to pull off upset and spoil bet cards everywhere. Can he do it again? I think Brunson is in an odd spot. He knows what Kelly has been doing and he is going to be motivated to rebound from the Silva fight. I think he comes out hard. If he blasts Kelly out of there, great. If he fails to get the job done, look Kelly to slowly take over the fight with a more consistent attack on the feet while wearing Brunson down in the clinch. Rolling with the dog! Bronze play.

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I’m going to pass here. Kelly has shown he can finish, but there are a couple of other plays I prefer to make here.

Dan Hooker -139 vs Ross Pearson +130 

I like Ross here, but just as much as I like the Brit, Hooker has simply not shown me enough to deserve this spot. Hooker has 2 UFC wins. He knocked out Hioki after losing the first round and subbed Eddiva in under 90-seconds. Neither guy is in the UFC anymore. He lacks volume striking, doesn’t use his reach well, and is vulnerable to the takedown. Pearson should be the more active striker and may even add the odd takedown. If you compare their opponents, the edge lies with the Brit. Even with Hooker coming up a division, I think he simply gets outworked by the veteran opponent.

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I don’t know if Ross can finish Hooker, but his price point fits what we have left in the bank. Pearson has some decent power and a decision win mixed with takedowns and a slightly above average output will do the trick. Add him.

Ben Nguyen +186 vs Tim Elliott -190 

I really like Elliott here. He is durable and aggressive. His wrestling should replicate the issues that Ben had with Smolka, potentially more so. Nguyen has had issues with opponents that can get him into the later rounds and make him work hard in the process. Tim will do just that and either take a decision or score a finish. Gold Play!

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All 6 of Nguyen’s losses have come inside the distance and Elliott has the style to replicate his previous issues. Even without a finish, Elliot can put up some big points. He had 176 in his decision win over Smolka. That is massive. Add him.

Henrique Da Silva +252 vs Ion Cutelaba -283 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I will most likely split some time between Cutelaba and Aldrich. I expect both to win, but there is enough concern in both fights to want to avoid going all in on both. Cutelaba is the better fighter, but needs to avoid a slowdown that could allow the Brazilian to get back into the fight. There is a prop to be played here.

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Ion’s finishing skills have disappeared since making the move to the UFC. Da Silva can be stopped but he takes a lot. I don’t like the price tag here.

Alex Volkanovski -458 vs Mizuto Hirota +400 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Volkanovski opened around -300 and was probably a little too steep at that price. I gave a lot of consideration to playing the dog here. I will probably make a counter bet Mizuto and stay away from Volkanovski. DNP!

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No Play here either.

Damien Brown -110 vs Vinc Pichel +108 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

The massive layoff is a huge concern for Pichel which has knocked Vinc down from a Silver play to a Bronze. Brown was in trouble early against Tuck before Tuck gassed out and even then I didn’t think Brown did enough to earn a decision. Pichel is nothing special, but he has shown in each of his last 2 fights that he can pile of the takedowns. That will be his key to victory here. Brown has beaten a guy with a terrible chin and a guy with consistently horrid cardio. Pichel out grits him. Bronze play.

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The Betting Scenario on this fight all but condemns us to a decision, but if Pichel’s takedown numbers are anything close to what he was putting together before the layoff he will produce. I expect him to be undervalued and passed over by many. Not by me though. Play him.

Dominique Steele -164 vs Luke Jumeau +153 

Steele has looked pretty decent in defeat over his last 2 fights and narrowly missed out on picking up the win in both. His cardio and chin make him a flawed fighter, but I don’t see a lot out of Jumeau to suggest he can beat Steele unless he cracks him early. Steele grinds this out with his wrestling and clinch attack, landing power strikes when needed. Gold Play!

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Steele will either get a stoppage or score a takedown-heavy decision win. Both will produce points against a debuting fighter that will struggle with his physicality. Steele joins the team.

Kiichi Kunimoto +289 vs Zak Ottow -303 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I’m not too interested in this fight. Ottow has been decent, but he has done nothing to warrant this big of a gap as the favourite. I was hoping he might come in -185 to -225 and then I would look. The -300 seems to be the best we are getting after he opened around -250. A potential counter bet on KK is an option or a big DNP!

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No Play here, a grind decision with several stalemates. Low scoring potential at a premium price. No thanks.

Ashkan Mokhtarian +153 vs John Moraga -161 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Moraga is in a pretty rough spot and I wouldn’t be shocked to see him mail it in here. But keep in mind he has been losing to the top guys in the division. Mokhtarian is not that, not even close. There are a number of undesirable factors on the side of the new guy here that have me leaning away. I have faded Moraga with success in the past, but I am on him here. Bronze play.

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Moraga is way to expensive here. I had him closer to $8600, nothing close to $9200. Pass.

Chan-Mi Jeon +185 vs JJ Aldrich -177 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

A lot of people are hammering the underdog here. Fading trendy dogs has been a pretty solid move of late. Jeon is just that. This was her first bid to make 115 and she missed by a couple of pounds. Not good. She has faced inexperienced opponents, has had a number of very short fights, and is doing so on short notice. Aldrich didn’t look great in her debut and has had issues with takedown which is a focus of Jeon. I still think Aldrich gets the better of her on the feet and will have more success the later this fight goes. As already mentioned, I will be playing her in the Silver section alternating with Cutelaba.

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Nothing here. A finish could come based on fatigue and/or inexperience. But I’m not interested.

Dong Hyun Kim -115 vs Thibault Gouti +111 

Gouti has done next to nothing in the UFC, other than getting stopped in all 3 of his fights. Kim has been finished twice, but it took a helluva a lot to get him out of there. Gouti has issues with the takedowns of OAM, so Kim could go that route. He could also look to overwhelm the Frenchman on the feet and test his chin. He has more scenarios to win this fight. Kim comes through as a Silver Play.

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Considering Gouti’s history of getting stopped and/or giving up TDs and Kim’s ability to exploit both areas, it is not hard to see why DHK Lite should be in your lineup.

 

1. Tim Elliott -190 

2. Alex Volkanovski -458 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

3. Dominique Steele -164 

4. Ion Cutelaba -283 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

5.  Derek Lewis -130 

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6. Dong Hyun Kim -115 

7. Zak Ottow -303 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

8. Ross Pearson +130 

9. John Moraga -161 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

10. JJ Aldrich -177 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

11. Vinc Pichel +108 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

12. Daniel Kelly +246 

1. Ross Pearson +130 

2. Daniel Kelly +246 

3. Vinc Pichel +108 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

4. Dong Hyun Kim -115 

5. Derek Lewis -130 

1. Mizuto Hirota +400:  Volkanovski has 1 UFC fight and it was against a fighter making their second promotional appearance off a long layoff. That isn’t much to go on. Hirota is a tough out and will test the Aussie far more than this line suggests he will.

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bETTING SCENARIOS

Exclusive Bet Pack Content.

Prop Bets

Derek Lewis to Win by TKO/KO/DQ +115 

Considering how infrequently Lewis wins by anything other than knockout, getting plus money for this prop makes it a must play. Hunt’s chin and durability have taken a downturn after so many years of battle, but the stoppage could and more likely will come as a result of his inability to stop the flurry of GNP headed his way. Bank on it.

Dan Hooker/Ross Pearson Total Rounds Over 2.5 -175 

There are a couple of options here. Pearson has gone the distance in 7 straight fights and has seen just a single fight over his last 22 outings end in the opening 5-minutes. While Hooker is dangerous, 3 of his last 5 fights have gone the distance. I have Pearson winning and at anything below -200 this is a playable option.

Ross Pearson to Win by Decision +210 

Most of the related info is posted above and with Hooker checking in at 1-5 for his career in decisions, this is a very playable bet. Some sites are offering Pearson on the cards at upwards to +225 others are down around +170. I’m good with anything in that range.

Tim Elliott to Win Inside the Distance +285 

Nguyen has never lost a fight where he hasn’t been finished. All of those defeats have come after the opening round including his loss to Smolka where he was simply worn out by the superior ground fighter. Elliott has the skills to reproduce that. Whether by sub or TKO, Tim has a real chance to grab the finish.

Ion Cutelaba to Win by Decision +257 

Cutelaba is a scrapper and was starching guys on the regional scene. Since coming to the UFC he has gone the distance twice and his other fight ended with a 3rd round TKO defeat. Da Silva is no easy out and is tough enough to get his fight into the later stages. With neither guy possessing an amazing gas tank, this bout might get sloppy late. I like Cutelaba to do enough to win, without securing a finish.

Damien Brown/Vinc Pichel 

See the Betting Scenario Section.

Chan-Mi Jeon/JJ Aldrich 

See the Betting Scenario Section.

Dong Hyun Kim/Thibault Gouti

See the Betting Scenario Section.

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