UFN 51: Silva vs Arlovski 2- Post Fight Breakdown & the Bet Pack

Scott Johnson

UFC Fight Night 51 is in the books and we have an old face making waves in the Heavyweight division.  Three knockouts and three submission wins highlight a pretty decent night of fights, let’s take a look.

After a No Contest finish to their first encounter Johnny Bedford and Rani Yahya fought to a much more decisive conclusion. Rani controlled the majority of the action on the floor, threatened early with a submission and finished the fight via Kimura in second frame. Bedford is an entertaining fighter, but his submission liabilities continue to cost him. Predictions: 1-0 Props: 1-0

The first Brazilian to fall was long time veteran Paulo Thiago as he dropped a 30-27 on all cards to Sean Spencer. Spencer hurt him early on the feet, mixed up his striking well and did a good job on the ground. Predictions: 2-0 Props: 2-0

In a controversial decision, Francisco Trinaldo got the hometown decision after a close first round that appear to see Leandro Silva get the better of the action. Round 2 was clearly Silva’s and he fought the third like he was up 2-0. The judges saw it 29-28 for Trinaldo. Predictions: 2-1 Props: 2-0

Despite the majority of the fight taking place on the ground George Sullivan picked up a solid win over Igor Araujo stopping him with hard unanswered strikes from top position. Predictions: 2-2 Props: 2-0

Finishing up the preliminary card, a tentative start to the fight gave way to a swift and well executed finish as Godofredo Pepey locked up a combination Triangle choke/ armbar on Dashon Johnson and added some elbow strikes for good measure. Unlike most prelim main events, this fight bucked the Over trend and all pre-fight indications were that it would. Predictions: 3-2 Props: 3-0

An aggressive start to the main card saw Jessica Andrade back the debuting Larrissa Pacheco down, score the early takedown and stat to put it on her. After some hard top position strikes, Andrade locked up her signature guillotine choke for the win. Predictions: 4-2 Props: 3-0

In another interesting decision, Yuri Alcantara earned a decision win over Russell Doane. Doane controlled top position for long durations of the bout, but the judges felt the impact of Alcantara’s striking weighed heavier and gave him the decision as a result. Predictions: 5-2 Props: 3-1

Santiago Ponzinibbio blasted his way to his first official UFC win with a first round knockout of debuting Wendell Oliveira. Oliveira looked sharp early on, but crumpled under the barrage from his Argentina counterpart. Predictions: 5-3 Props: 3-1

In an easy a fight to score, Leo Santos earns a 29-28 decision win across the board over Efrain Escudero. Santos won the opening frame with a dominant grappling based attacked. He was stunned with a big right hand from Efrain in round 2 which brought the cards level. In the final frame a well timed takedown and roughly 3 minutes of ground control sealed the deal. Predictions: 6-3 Props: 3-1

In the co-main event  long time UFC veteran Gleison Tibau picked up a split decision win over tough as nails Piotr Hallmann. Tibau landed some decent shots and appeared to hurt Hallmann on a couple of different occasions. Hallmann was able to open up a cut on Tibau’s face with a hard knee in the clinch that prompted a quick doctor visit in the third round. The takedowns of Tibau were crucial as well, but he was unable to hold much top position. Both fighters were clearly exhausted by the end of the bout. Predictions: 7-3 Props: 3-1

**On a side note- does anyone else think that in the side profile pick of Gunnar Nelson for his UFN event he looks a lot like Fabio Maldonado? Just a thought. Moving on.

The Brazilian crowd was rocking all night long, but the former UFC Heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski sent them home quiet when he picked up a huge win with a first round knockout over Antonio ‘Bigfoot’ Silva. Arlovski had a clear speed advantage and was landing at will, with Bigfoot attempting to catch him coming forward. The volume that the Brazilian showed in their first meeting was nowhere to be found.  Just a little more halfway through the round Andrei moved forward, dropped Silva with a quick right hand and finished the bout with a series of undefended hammer fists.

Arlovski looked much better and will get a major boost in the rankings with the win. For Silva, any number of things could have impacted his performance, but he certainly looked a step behind from start to finish. Like many rematches that follow a first installment that went the distance, this bout ends very early (see my breakdown below of this fight).  Predictions: 7-4 Props: 4-2

Overall it was a decent night of action and the prediction card was respectable at 7-4. The bet pack had a some decent returns and is posted below for you to check out. Make sure you also follow up with the Panel and see how they did.

UFC Fight Night 51

Gold Plays

Parlay #1
Selection 1: JESSICA ANDRADE $2.00
Price: $2.00 x Bet: $100
Payout: $200
Parlay #2
Selection 1: GLEISON TIBAU $1.46
Selection 2: SEAN SPENCER $1.57
Selection 3: YURI ALCANTARA $1.34
Price: $3.08 x Bet: $100
Payout: $308
Parlay #3
Selection 1: ANTONIO SILVA to Win by TKO/KO/DQ $1.84
Price: $1.84 x Bet: $100
Payout: $184
Silver Plays
Parlay #1
Selection 1: RANI YAHYA $2.31
Price: $2.31 x Bet: $100
Payout: $231
Parlay #2
Selection 1: LEANDRO SILVA $2.60
Selection 2: WENDELL OLIVEIRA $1.84
Price: $4.79 x Bet: $100
Payout: $479
Parlay #3
Selection 1: IGOR ARAUJO $1.60
Selection 2: LEONARDO SANTOS $1.50
Selection 3: GODOFREDO PEPEY $1.69
Price: $4.06 x Bet: $100
Payout: $406
Bronze Plays
Parlay #1
Selection 1: JESSICA ANDRADE $2.00
Selection 2: IGOR ARAUJO $1.60
Selection 3: SEAN SPENCER $1.57
Selection 4: YURI ALCANTARA/ RUSSELL DOANE Total Rounds Under 2.5 $1.95
Price: $9.80 x Bet: $100
Payout: $980
Parlay #2
Selection 1: DASHON JOHNSON/ GODOFREDO PEPEY Total Rounds Under 1.5 $2.25
Selection 2: JOHNNY BEDFORD/ RANI YAHYA Total Rounds Under 2.5 $1.71
Selection 3: LEANDRO SILVA $2.60
Selection 4: WENDELL OLIVEIRA $1.84
Price: $18.41 x Bet: $100
Payout: $1841
Parlay #1
Selection 1: JESSICA ANDRADE $2.00
Selection 2: IGOR ARAUJO $1.60
Selection 3: LEANDRO SILVA $2.60
Selection 4: ANTONIO SILVA to Win by TKO/KO/DQ $1.84
Selection 5: JOHNNY BEDFORD/ RANI YAHYA Total Rounds Under 2.5 $1.71
Price: $26.18 x Bet: $100
Payout: $2618

Individual Fight Betting Breakdowns


The first fight didn’t last very long so there isn’t much to take from it. Yahya’s gas tank does concern me. If he slows down like he did against Hirota in the final round Bedford could very easily put enough damage on him to end the fight. On the flip side we have to play the percentages. Johnny struggles tremendously against good submission fighters. Losing 2-3 times by one method is concerning, but when you start closing in on double digits that is hard to look past. Johnny could very well land some big shots and legitimately hurt Rani, but I expect to see Yahya shoot and drag Bedford to the floor ASAP. Rani might make the cut as a Gold single bet, but as of right now I am leaning towards the Silver section.


If Thiago is going to win this he has to slap on a submission early, which is certainly something he can do. Unfortunately, he is simply past his prime. Spencer has showed pretty solid TDD and his win over Villefort in Brazil looms huge here as a great experience to draw upon. Thiago will probably put up a good tussle trying to drag him to the mat early, but as Spencer defends he will slow and the attempts will come less frequently. On the feet, Spencer’s higher volume and more technical approach will give him a significant advantage. At $1.57 Spencer doesn’t blow me away, but he can serve as a nice contributor to a Gold parlay.


Trinaldo is the favourite here because no one knows who Silva is. He had a single bout in the UFC, fought at WW, lost, and was cut. He has since returned to the regional circuit and torn through 5 opponents with a pretty respectable combined record. Trinaldo’s gas tank is a huge concern. He slows down too quickly and if he can’t get 2 rounds in the books he is going to struggle to win a decision. I wasn’t impressed with his fight IQ vs Ronson. Ronson had just lost to another fighter with a similar skillset based on grappling and takedowns and FT elected to keep the fight vertical for the most part. This allowed Ronson to use his strongest skillset and the fight was a much closer split decision then it needed to be. I think Silva will be faster, mix up his striking better, and I expect to see him attempting a number of single leg TDs early. Even if they don’t land it will force Silva to work hard and focus on more then just striking defense. I can see scenarios where Trinaldo wins this fight, which will prevent Silva fro being a Gold single bet, but just like with Rani he fits the bill for the Silver pack.


Sullivan’s upset win in his debut is less impressive now that Rhodes has dropped a second UFC fight. Honestly, Sullivan didn’t do that much. He landed a little more consistently on the feet and scored with a takedown or 2. I wasn’t impressed with his defensive grappling against Rhodes, but he was able to get away with it. Whenever they would clinch up he turned his back to try and create separation. If he does that against Araujo, Igor is going to jump all over him. Drag the fight to the ground and start chaining subs together. Even when Sullivan does get to strike he is pretty darn stiff and Igor’s aggressive and a little wild approach will tax his cardio. I am always under the impression that the UFC puts fights together to help grow their brand in that specific location. Locals want to see their favourites win and that is why I am on 10 of 11 Brazilians here. I simply see Igor’s skills on the ground having the most influence on this fight. He has some decent value here and should work on a parlay, probably a Gold play.


I took a long hard look at DJ, because I am not a big fan of Pepey. Unfortunately when you look at Johnson’s record is littered with fighters with laughable records; 0-12, 1-13, 0-2 and so on. As I mentioned in my breakdown, the only guy with a close to okay record (12-12) pushed Johnson to a split decision. Then he came to the UFC and got destroyed by a still developing 19 year old from Australia. I can’t see Johnson doing well in the hostile Brazilian environment and unless he can catch Pepey with an earth shattering shot (it could happen but not likely), he is gong to succumb to his Godofredo’s uber aggressive style. Pepey’s grappling should give him fits on the mat as well. I expect to see Pepey pull guard, Johnson to willingly take top position and kept swept almost right away. Pepey at $1.69 has some value based solely on a comparison of competition. I wish he was a little more refined in his attack, so he will probably slip to a silver parlay.


I really like the odds here. I recognize that Pacheco is dangerous, but she simply isn’t refined enough to beat Andrade in most scenarios. She could catch her coming forward or possible with a submission, but I expect to see Andrade landing at will and potentially scoring some solid top control time/damage. The odds are a little scattered but anything within a quarter of the price listed above for Andrade is more then worth it. Pacheco has faced relatively inexperienced competition at a much lower level and Andrade appears to have really found her stride. She is the front runner or my #1 Value play and a Gold play single bet.


I like Doane as a fighter, but I think that he just overmatched here. Alcantara is a monster at BW and had he not faced Faber when he did he would be climbing the rankings quicker then he already is. Yes, Reis gave him some trouble, but Alcantara is a bad matchup for the vast majority of the division. I wouldn’t be shocked to see Doane hang in there with him for the full 15 minutes, but hanging around and winning aren’t the same thing. I will use Alcantara in the Gold section on a parlay bet.


Ponz. did not look good in his debut and a lot of the hype that surrounded him on TUF was stripped away pretty fast. He looked sloppy when he was fresh and looked even sloppier when he tired. Oliveira is debuting and in the footage he looked more technically refined. I liked what I saw, but there is still room for improvement. We also don’t know how he will perform under the big lights. Keep in mind this is Argentina vs Brazil so the crowd will be hot for Wendell for sure. One thing I have seen before is that when you have a debuting fighter that is being favoured over a guy that has fought in the UFC before there is usually a reason for it. I will roll with that and probably play Oliveira as a Silver single bet based on the elements of unknown that exist in this bout.


The line is climbing a bit for Santos which is nice. He is very much a specialist which is a bit concerning as Escudero is far from this heavy an underdog if this fight never hits the mat. Efrain’s difficulties have always come against good grapplers. He is no slouch on the mat himself, but he is outmatched here. Santos hasn’t shown a great takedown game, but still see him getting Efrain to the mat in some fashion. His striking looked a little better in his fight and using his length will be key. Jabs and kicks, force Efrain to close the distance and change levels for a TDA. If this fight is close, in Brazil Santos gets the nod on the cards. At $1.50 he can be a solid contributor to a parlay, most likely a Gold play.


Pat Healy, Jamie Varner, and to a lesser extent Francisco Trinaldo were all fighters I backed to beat Tibau and lost. I was anticipating that through one method or another they would be able to keep it close early, he would slow down, and they could take a decision. Against Healy and Varner he slowed, but after getting 2 rounds in the books- that is what I am counting on here. Hallmann is a tough dude and is known for hanging around, but I just can’t see him stealing an early round to couple with the third frame. Tibau’s wrestling keeps looking better and with his size and top game its hard to deal with him from top position. Look for him to land some big thunderous takedowns and keep Hallmann there for prolong periods of time. I would be shocked to see a ref stand a bout up if the local fighter is on top. Tibau will be getting the Gold treatment as part of a parlay.


The line isn’t that exciting here as I think Silva wins this fight fairly easily. Silva has taken a step up in competition since they first fought (Cain x2, Cormier, Fedor, Browne, Overeem) and Arlovski took a step back (Coles, Hayes, Fulton, Lopez, Kraniotakes). Andrei did beat Schaub but it was far from impressive. Yes it was his debut, but we have seen that tentative style from him before. If he doesn’t stick and move and outwork Bigfoot he is in for a tough night. He should have been the faster man in their first meeting, but he wasn’t. He was continually getting beat to the punch and was giving up the more impactful shots. It was the only fight that Andrei didn’t get knocked out in during his 4 fight losing streak. Keep in mind that Silva is fighting without TRT for the first time which could be interesting. While I most likely won’t be using Silva straight up, I am looking at a couple of prop bets. Rematches that went the distance or at least deep in their first installment tend to end quicker the second time around- Henderson vs Pettis, Shogun vs Henderson, Machida vs Shogun, Silva vs Sonnen and there are several other examples. With Andrei’s chin issues this fight has a great chance to end early.

Whole Event Confidence Bets Ranking (1- Most Confident to Win outright)

6. IGOR ARAUJO $1.60
9. RANI YAHYA $2.31


Top Value Bets (1- Greatest Value based on Betting odds & Ability to Win)

# Price Explanation
1. JESSICA ANDRADE $2.00 She has already faced top level competition in the UFC and has made some significant strides in her most recent fights. Her opponent is young and a little on the raw side.
2. RANI YAHYA $2.31 Too many submission losses on Bedford’s resume to trust him against such a talented grappler.
3. LEANDRO SILVA $2.60 He is a better fighter then we saw in his debut and is far more suited for LW. Trinaldo’s gas tank and fight IQ will cost him here.
4. WENDELL OLIVEIRA $1.84 His opponent looked pretty rough in his debut and appears to have some big technical gaps in his striking game along with a below average gas tank.
5. SEAN SPENCER $1.57 Not a big price tag here, but it could climb slightly on fight day. Thiago looks shot out and Spencer is a nightmare if Thiago can’t ground him start to finish.

The Value Bet list is a list of fighters ranked based on a combination of their ability to win their fight and the potential financial return you would receive if they win.

  • Even on a good night I don’t anticipate winning every fight on this list, realistically 2-3 correct picks would be considered a successful event.
  • I do not recommend backing every fighter listed, these are just suggestions where the greatest betting value on the card lies, it is up to you to make the decision where to invest your money.

Top Value Bets for non-Predicted Winners (1- Greatest Value based on Betting odds & Ability to Win)

# Price Explanation
1. N/A

The Value Bet list for non-predicted winners is a list of fighters ranked based on a combination of their ability to win their fight and the potential financial return you would receive if they win. These 5 fighters are the best betting options available of all of the fighters that I predicted to lose and although I fully endorse my own predicted winner I feel that giving this type of information is only fair to my followers as it gives them further insight into my opinion on each match-up. Some people might question the use of one fighter in a parlay and the other (an underdog) in a straight up bet, but here is my logic. Scenario: the Fav is in a 3 fighter parlay and it pays $5 x your bet of $30 and the dog pays $3.50 x your bet of $10. The underdog single bet offers a nice safety net. If he wins then you bet a total of $40 and won $35, your losses are minimal. If your parlay wins then you bet $40 and won $150, so it is still a decent profit line. There is the possibility that you might not win either bet, but having an “insurance” style bet can keep you from going broke a lot of nights.

Prop Bets-

JOHNNY BEDFORD/ RANI YAHYA Total Rounds Under 2.5 $1.71- Both guys have the ability to end this fight early. I don’t expect to see as quick a finish as last time. Bedford will be hot to prove the first ‘knockout’ wasn’t a fluke. That could lead to a knockout win or a mistake and eventually submission loss. Play the under.

PAULO THIAGO/ SEAN SPENCER Total Rounds Over 2.5 $1.53- I don’t see Spencer stopping him unless he can really pile up the damage. The most likely early end could come via submission for Thiago, but I don’t see that happening. 18 of 36 combined fights have gone to the scorecards. I’ll take this one to go to the scorecards.

DASHON JOHNSON/ GODOFREDO PEPEY Total Rounds Under 1.5 $2.25- Normally, I would be on the Over in the final fight prior to the main card starting. Instead, I think the UFC is looking to get the crowd hot. This fight should be action packed and do just that. Pepey can finish with his submission game or on the feet and Johnson could crack the questionable chin of Pepey. I will take the under here.

YURI ALCANTARA/ RUSSELL DOANE Total Rounds Under 2.5 $1.95- Doan is a tough kid, but I think he is overmatched here. Alcantara lands something big, hurts him, and ends this fight inside the distance.

ANDREI ARLOVSKI/ ANTONIO SILVA Total Rounds Under 1.5 $2.35- I was hoping to get a bit more time for the under, but I will still take a shot. I already mentioned how rematches tend to finish up quicker then their predecessor. Silva lands something big early, but Andrei could surprise us as well.

ANTONIO SILVA to Win by TKO/KO/DQ $1.84- Even if the fight doesn’t end early I expect over 5 rounds the damage will pile up and Andrei’s chin will eventually give out.