UFC 127 Odds With Predictions and Betting Picks
by Trevor Whenham - 2/25/2011
The UFC was a huge hit the last time it went to Sydney, Australia - for UFC 110 last year - so they are heading back for UFC 127. It makes my head hurt trying to figure out when it is actually happening in Australia, but the important thing is that it will be available on pay-per-view in the U.S. and Canada starting at 10 pm ET on Saturday, February 26. The five fights on the main card are solid, including an intriguing main event, and a couple of Aussies. Here’s how the event breaks down - or at least the four fights that have posted odds. Carlos Condit was injured late, and was replaced in his fight against Chris Lytle by journeyman Brian Ebersole. That fight isn’t likely to be particularly compelling - Ebersole has fought 62 times, but this is a huge step up in class for him (odds are from SportsInteraction.com):
Jon Fitch (-200) vs. B.J. Penn (+140) - It’s amazing how far Penn has fallen in a short time - he’s gone from a champion and highly regarded fighter to a guy who has lost two of three, doesn’t have a clear future laid out ahead of him, and is a main event underdog in less than a year. He can no longer be called a great fighter - at least for now - but he’s coming off of a massacre of Matt Hughes last time out that at least captured the imagination again. Penn’s problem all the way along has been a lack of consistency - he can come out flat and unfocused even when the stakes are very high, but he can also look like the best fighter on the planet. That’s a concerning situation here because the one thing we can be certain of with Fitch is that he’ll come out ready for war. Penn is by far the more athletic fighter, but Fitch is all heart, and he never quits. The fight should set up as a power struggle. Fitch is strong and determined, and he’s going to try to be aggressive and make Penn take a step back and hesitate. If Penn stands up to the attack and is aggressive himself - and if he asserts his superiority in technique - then the fight is going to be interesting. If Penn doesn’t come into this one ready for a war, though, then Fitch can use his size and weight advantage to wear him down and come out on top. I would love to back a fighter the caliber of Penn at an underdog price like this, but I just don’t think that the price represents value - Penn is too hard to trust right now. I have to go with the favorite.
Pick: Jon Fitch
Michael Bisping (-455) vs. Jorge Rivera (+280) - Bisping must be a tough fighter for the UFC to manage. He’s wildly popular in his native U.K., and the UFC likes being popular in Britain, so it is in their interest to keep him around and winning. Whenever they move him up against top level competition, though, he can’t quite do enough to win. Luckily for him, though, Rivera is a long way from top level competition. He’s solid, but no match for Bisping here.
Pick: Michael Bisping
George Sotiropoulos (-400) vs. Dennis Siver (+250) - Siver is an impressive fighter, and if he were to win here he would definitely be on his way to a lightweight title shot at some point. He has landed in a tough spot here. Sotiropoulos is undefeated in seven UFC fights, and is clearly and rapidly improving. He’s tough to beat. Beyond that, he’s an Australian, and the UFC likes to put fighters in good spots in front of home crowds. Siver will be a strong opponent, but Sotiropoulos has been put in a position to shine here. I hate taking heavy favorites like this, but there isn’t a clear way around it in this fight.
Pick: George Sotiropoulos
Kyle Noke (-208) vs. Chris Camozzi (+145) - These two have a lot in common - they were both on season 11 of The Ultimate Fighter, they both have a 2-0 record in the UFC, and they are both making their debut on the main card here. They are also evenly matched. The only way to explain the lopsided odds is that Noke is an Australian so the crowd will be behind him. That’s an advantage, but I don’t think it is as much of one as the odds suggest. That makes the underdog attractive.
Pick: Chris Camozzi
UFC 126 was a great day for our mythical $500 bankroll. We picked the card perfectly and won both bets to more than wipe out a lousy day on UFC 125, and to put us back into the black since we starting recommending bets three cards ago. This card isn’t nearly as attractive as last one from a betting perspective, so all of my $500 bankroll this time around will be on an underwhelming parlay:
$500 parlay on Sotiropoulos and Bisping - to win $262.36
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