UFN 63: Mendes vs Lamas- ‘Raging Robbery’

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A little Saturday morning/ afternoon action for the UFC with the 10 fight UFC Fight Night 63, featuring a Featherweight bout between two of the top ranked fighters in the division. Both men are former title challengers, but only one could hold onto their aspirations for another shot at the gold. The event was also highlighted by a controversial decision in the co-main event and an ensuing temper tantrum by the whiner winner. Let’s take a look at some of the bigger moments from the event.

Let It Go

It wasn’t another earth shattering knockout, but Gray Maynard dropped a decision to Alexander Yakovlev who seemingly beat Gray at his own game. The Russian did score a knockdown in the middle frame, but it was a win primarily based on his ability to out wrestling Maynard for a larger duration of the fight. It’s a big win for Yakovlev, but an even bigger defeat for Maynard who could very well be looking at the end of his career. It just goes to show how close a fighter can get to a championship, but never actually hold the belt.

Lightweight Rising

In an impressive performance, Dustin Poirier handed Diego Ferreira the first stoppage defeat of his career and subsequently got his own run as a UFC Lightweight off to a good start. After the first round knockout was signed and sealed, Poirier promptly was offer and accepted a bout on the June 6th card in New Orleans against an opponent yet to be determined. The win is a nice start, but the competition will only get tougher for the former top ranked Featherweight.

TUF to Title Contention?

Juliana Pena made short work of Milana Dudieva with a brutal top position TKO. After the fight she gave a shout out to teammate Elizabeth Phillips who lost a controversial decision to Dudieva in the Russian’s debut. She then made a statement that had she not be sidelined by injury she would already be champion, which probably didn’t sit well with the current champion. In a division devoid of top level fighters who haven’t already been bested by Rousey, Pena could be a couple of wins away from her desired opportunity.

Raging Robbery

There have been worse, but not many. Jorge Masvidal badly hurt Al Iaquinta in the first stanza and arguably warranted a 10-8 round for his efforts. Unfortunately, he failed to convince more than one judge that he had done enough in the following rounds to earn the victory. Masvidal’s lack of activity can be partially blamed for his defeat, but it was fairly evident that he was avoiding the vast majority of his opponent’s offerings and landing his own at pretty high rate.

While the decision was controversial, it was what followed that was even more obscure. The crowd, upset with the decision, booed Iaquinta and he responded to the negativity with negativity. He proceed to curse out the crowd to the extent that his corner men whisked him away from the microphone. Following his hotel room destroying antics after his last bout, Iaquinta is quickly earning reputation for a poorly managed temper and will most likely get a visit from the brass regarding his outburst.

Regardless, he rallied from a tough start to steal the win and will most likely earn another step of the ladder. For Masvidal, the loss was clearly a disappointing one and he is now forced to rebuild his case for a spot in the top 10.

Over and Out

Chad Mendes has long been considered the second best Featherweight on the planet and he continues to prove that night in and night out. He rose to his second title shot on the strength of a series of wins over unranked and fringe top 10 opposition. This dominant win over fellow former title challenger Ricardo Lamas is a strong first building block to another title opportunity. Mendes is still not at the front of the line though, as a victorious Frankie Edgar will most likely fight Jose Aldo next should he get by Conor McGregor. If Conor takes the title, a rematch with Aldo is almost a foregone conclusion, but after that the slate would be wiped clean and Mendes would most likely get his third shot at the strap. Oh the possibilities.

Final Thoughts

A 6-4 record and a diminutive profit from the bet packs is far from a banner night day, but has Masvidal come through it would have return a profit of just over 26 units after everything else was paid for. On the bright side, this makes 4 straight events with an above .500 record and considering I started this card 0-3 I’ll take it. UFC Fight Night 64 is next and with it comes the return of Mirko Cro Cop, lets wind it back up again.

Parlay Header

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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Jorge Masvidal $1.80
Selection 2: Juliana Pena $1.39 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 3: Michael Chiesa $1.29 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
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Price: $3.23 x Bet: 8 units
Payout: 25.84 units
 
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Parlay #2
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Selection 1: Dustin Poirier $1.56 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 2: Clay Guida $1.43 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 3: Liz Carmouche $1.93 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
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Price: $4.31 x Bet: 7 units
Payout: 30.17 units
 
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Gray Maynard $2.15
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Price: $2.15 x Bet: 5 units
Payout: 10.75 units
 
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Parlay #2
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Selection 1: Jorge Masvidal $1.80
Selection 2: Justin Jones $1.79
Selection 3: Chiesa/Clarke Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.15
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Price: $6.93 x Bet: 6 units
Payout: 41.58 units
 
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Pena/Dudieva Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.50 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 2: Dustin Poirier $1.56 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 3: Mendes/Lamas Total Rounds Over 3.5 $1.65
Selection 4: Guida/Peralta Total Rounds Over 2.5 $1.57 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
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Price: $10.11 x Bet: 5 units
Payout: 50.55 units
 
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Parlay #1
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Selection 1: Jorge Masvidal $1.80
Selection 2: Chiesa/Clarke Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.15
Selection 3: Gray Maynard $2.15
Selection 4: Liz Carmouche $1.93 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
Selection 5: Pena/Dudieva Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.50 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med
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Price: $40.15 x Bet: 4 units
Payout: 160.6 units 

Ron Stallings $2.18 vs Justin Jones $1.79

Stallings certainly has the numerical experience advantage and he has faced the superior quality of opposition as well. That being said, it would appear that Jones is the more physically gifted of the two. His power and ability to work his wrestling should be able to exploit the holes that Stallings has previously exhibited. The line is tight, which is a product of JJ’s lack of experience and that factor is concerning and can present unforeseen complications once the fight is underway. With Jones being so green, this bout falls from the realm of the Gold Pack and most likely is headed towards a Silver Parlay play.

4 STARS

Shamil Abdurahimov $1.41 vs Timothy Johnson $3.31

Two debuting Heavyweights and one with minimal big fight experience and not a tonne of recent footage- rough. With fights like this it really is hard to get a good hold on how it will play out and even if you do it can go right out the window with one big punch or significant exertion of energy. The Russian looks like the better of the two options and the line would certainly suggest that, but we have seen heavy favs under similar circumstances flounder. I might include him in lower level parlay, but No Play is also an option and the line is probably worth looking at as well.4 STARS

Alexander Yakovlev $1.89 vs Gray Maynard $2.15

Oh how the mighty have fallen. A former title-challenger now an underdog fighting on the prelims against a winless UFC fighter making a divisional change. Yikes. Maynard’s chin is shot and its largely because of his follow-up response to getting clipped- the initial strike is usually followed by several undefended strikes and the ref stepping in. Can Yak replicate those issues? Possibly, but he has displayed a pretty subpar ability to deal with a wrestling based attack and that is what Gray SHOULD bring to the table. I don’t think this will be the most invigorating performance of the night, but it should be serviceable. The Russian will struggle with the pace of the new division against an opponent who should be able to match his physical attributes. The chin issue still looms and most likely knocks Maynard down to a Silver play.

4 STARS

Liz Carmouche $1.93 vs Lauren Murphy $1.98 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Another former title challenger in a very closely lined fight. Murphy is scrappy and I really enjoyed her effort off her back against McMann, but it is hard to win from that position. Carmouche isn’t as good of a wrestler as McMann, but she has been employing her wrestling skills in MMA both longer and at a higher level. The manner in which she handled Tate on the floor was quite impressive and I felt it was enough to get the nod. Murph has had defensive wrestling issues in the past and far less accomplished ground fighters then her debut opponent were able to exploit them. I see this fight being close, as the line suggests, but the positional advantage gained through Liz’s wrestling will be significant. She has fought the best of the best and that shows up here. I am leaning towards a Gold parlay play.

4 STARS

Dustin Poirier $1.56 vs Diego Ferreira $2.65 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

There are a lot of people in various forums playing the “Diego who” or “Poirier is getting a gimmy fight for his debut” shtick. Clearly uneducated. Ferreira is a stern first test for Dustin’s return to 155. So much so that I nearly picked him to win outright and feel he isn’t that big of a stretch to pull off the upset. If he gets Dustin on the mat with consistency this is easily his fight to win. That being said, I think Poirier keeps it standing and picks him part with his striking for the duration. There will be some dicey moments, but I will ride with Poirier. If he wasn’t making his divisional debut I would certainly have him as a Gold parlay leg, he might still get there, but with a little less certainty.

4 STARS

Clay Guida $1.43 vs Robbie Peralta $3.16 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

For Guida, this could be the last kick at the can. If he can’t pick up this win it would suggest that even his position as a respectable gatekeeper is no longer valid. Peralta his like a tank, but his overall fight game is extremely flawed. He too frequently looks for the one hitter quitter and has trouble against strong ground fighters. Guida should be able to exploit this second scenario and use his movement to frustrate Peralta when they are standing. He out-wrestled Kawajiri and kept Hioki stuck on his back, he should have similar success here. I am curious to see what changes the camp alteration brings for Clay. Unless Robbie knocks him I think his chances of winning are minimal, I think Clay can work as a Gold level parlay play.

4 STARS

Juliana Pena $1.39 vs Milana Dudieva $3.36 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I was very unimpressed with Dudieva in her debut, I picked against her and was a little shocked when her name was called at the end of the fight. She should improve in her second bout, but much of what we saw in her debut mirrors the majority of her pre-UFC efforts. Pena has been out a long time and had a brutal knee injury. That type of stuff may physically heel, but there are still issues mentally that can inhibit a fighter’s performance. Based on what I have seen Milana has a limited window to get her hand raised here. Her cardio isn’t great and her willingness to forgo position for submission will cost her if she can’t make it count. Pena is heavy on top and can do some serious damage once she gets there. Despite the layoff I will play Pena as a Gold parlay leg and may look at the total.

4 STARS

Michael Chiesa $1.29 vs Mitch Clarke $4.19 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

I mentioned in my prediction how odd it is that both of these guys put Al Iaquinta to sleep, Clarke in his last fight, yet they are getting booked under him. I think the UFC is really looking to build up Al as a guy they will hope to use once MMA becomes legal in New York. Chiesa wins this fight. I haven’t been impressed with Clarke and Chiesa is better at the things Clarke does best. Even at this price I will consider taking the TUF winner onto a parlay, but the total might be the best play.

4 STARS

Jorge Masvidal $1.80 vs Al Iaquinta $2.18

Jorge talked big, he had better back it up. When you make the statement that your opponent is not worthy of fighting you, you’d better blow him out of the barn- or at the very least win. I think Jorge will do just that, but Al is improving and dangerous. Masvidal should exploit the weaknesses that still exist in Iaquinta’s game and I expect him to score with his wrestling. Al has been vulnerable against wrestlers and the way that Masvidal can string it together makes his takedown game that much more effective. My biggest concern with Masvidal is that he starts slow and has been getting clipped/ dropped in a few of his fights. If he gets behind and lets Al get comfortable/ build momentum it will be hard for him to get back in front. I like Jorge at this price and I will be playing him in the Gold pack, possibly a single bet or pairing him up with a second fighter.

4 STARS

Chad Mendes $1.24 vs Ricardo Lamas $4.63 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Lamas is not this big of an underdog, so there is value there. Just like Mendes, he has beaten everyone in UFC not named Aldo. But, if you stack up their competition in the UFC head to head, it favours Lamas significantly. Mendes’s top 3 wins: Lentz, Guida, Elkins vs Lamas: Swanson, Bermudez, Koch or Dias. Advantage Lamas. Mendes had a far better showing against Aldo (in his second) shot then Lamas did, but there is now the risk of a let down considering he is 0-2 versus the champ and will need another massive run to earn a shot at the title. I certainly think he could get there, but he will need to be letter perfect. A win by McGregor would massive for the winner of this fight as a shot versus the Notorious one would be a definite possibility. From a betting standpoint I won’t be playing Mendes, but a small on Lamas is more then warranted. I have Mendes winning, but it will be closer then these odds would suggest. A play on the total is worth a look depending on the numbers.

1. Michael Chiesa $1.29 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

2. Jorge Masvidal $1.80

3. Juliana Pena $1.39 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

4. Chad Mendes $1.24 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

5. Clay Guida $1.43 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

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6. Dustin Poirier $1.56 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

7. Liz Carmouche $1.93 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

8. Gray Maynard $2.15

9. Shamil Abdurahimov $1.41

10. Justin Jones $1.79

1. Jorge Masvidal $1.80  // One of the most underrated fighters in the division, Masvidal needs to back up his talk. He will.

2. Liz Carmouche $1.93 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med // His struggles have come against the elite of the division and against the likes of Ronda and Miesha she has had moments of success. She is better then her recent record would suggest.

3. Chiesa/Clarke Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.15  // Clarke has won an improbable set of back to back fights, I think that stops here against an improving and motivated Chiesa.

4. Pena/Dudieva Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.50 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med // This play capitalizes on both girls finishing ability and pays more then initially expected.

5. Gray Maynard $2.15  // He falls a couple of spots here because of his chin, but Yakoklev is the type of opponent that has struggled with the attack that Maynard will bring. This line might climb as we get closer to bell time.

1. Ricardo Lamas $4.63  // Simply too much value not to make a small to moderate investment. He has a far better chance then these odds would suggest.

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bETTING SCENARIOS

Exclusive Betting Pack Information

Prop Bets

Ron Stallings/Justin Jones

See Betting Scenario Section.

Shamil Abdurahimov/Timothy Johnson 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

See Betting Scenario Section.

Liz Carmouche/Lauren Murphy 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

See Betting Scenario Section.

Dustin Poirier/Diego Ferreira Total Rounds Over 2.5 $2.05

Both guys have great finishing rates, but they are far from easy outs. Ferreira has never been finished and while Poirier has been stopped twice it was by top level competition. 4 of Ferreira’s last 6 fights have gone the distance, corresponding with a step up in competition. Look for Poirier to be cautious to avoid getting put on his back and this should push the fight towards the judges.

Clay Guida/Robbie Peralta Total Rounds Over 2.5 $1.57 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Peralta’s deficiencies on the mat and most likely his knockout power are the main reasons this line is a little bit above the norm for a total. I think Guida grinds him down and while he could look to finish him, its more likely he focuses here on position over submission. Take the Over.

Juliana Pena/Milana Dudieva Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.50 12379140591570510706dholler_ok_svg_med

Both ladies have the ability to finish this fight and I think they will each play a role in why it will end early. Dudieva will go hard for submissions and while she might get one, its more likely that she will both exhaust herself and put herself in some bad positions that Pena will exploit. Pena might be a little rusty, but I think she will settle in and 2.5 rounds at this price is worth.

Michael Chiesa/Mitch Clarke Total Rounds Under 2.5 $2.15

This play is 100% based on Chiesa winning this fight, obviously if you play the Under and Clarke gets the win inside 2.5 rounds we’re happy- but its unlikely. Clarke has already been finished once in the UFC and was in all sorts of trouble prior to sleeping Iaquinta. I think Chiesa puts him on the mat, and unloads GNP until he either gets a ref stoppage or Clark or turtle up leading to an RNC.

Chad Mendes/Ricardo Lamas Total Rounds Over 3.5 $1.65

If you don’t want to invest in Lamas then this is probably your best bet. Both guys are capable of ending the fight, but bot are incredibly durable and have each gone the full 5 with the champ without getting put away. With 2 fighters of this caliber they know how to finish, but I expect to see Mendes use his wresting to score some serious points and eat up some big minutes. Play the Over.

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