MadLab’s UFC Fight Night Breakdown and Predictions!!!
Here is what Twitter is saying.
UFC FIGHT NIGHT CARD
Derek Brunson $7100 vs. Edmen Shahbazyan $9100 (3 ROUNDS)
At first glance, this is a good matchup between a guy who has been a mainstay in the UFC despite his questionable stance on where he actually is in his career against a rising prospect that hasn’t fought a ton of talent to really gauge exactly where he is. At the end of the day, this is a very good measuring stick for both men in different ways. Brunson holds a 20-7 record, and quite honestly, that record is a really accurate statement about where and what kind of career he has had. The heavy hitter has 11 wins by KO, and in his 7 losses, he has been KOd 5 times. So he needs to be very careful if he wants to play in the pocket with the young buck Shahbazyan, who does a lot of his handy work by KO as well with 9 of his 11 wins by KO. The undefeated 22-year-old is extremely talented yet raw. When a fighter is 11-0 at his age, it seems almost written on the wall that the loss is coming soon to tarnish it up a bit. Brunson although a fighter who likes to slang and bang isn’t just a one-trick pony. Holding a brown belt in BJJ under Renzo Gracie and has a pedigree in NCAA division 2 wrestling. So he does have other places to take it where he can test the youngster. However, Shahbazyan will have no issues going for the takedown, but Brunson possesses a merely perfect takedown defense and it would be extremely impressive if Shahbazyan can get it there. If it goes to the ground, I feel it will be on Brunson’s behalf. With that said, this fight is not a walk in the park and it is a major step up in competition for Shahbazyan. I do feel he gets the win, but it’s not going to be as easy as people think. I would be lying if I said this fight didn’t scare me a bit. Also, you really need to keep in mind that this is remaining a 3 round fight. So you are not getting extra value with the 2 rounds. I would really try to keep that in mind. ALSO KEEP IT TO YOURSELF. There are plenty of people out there that will still think that this is a 5 round fight when it is not. So they may jump on the main event thinking they will be getting the extra value when they are not. So keep it in your mind, but keep it there and not expose it to others. People obviously know, but there are plenty I am sure that doesn’t.
The Pick: Shahbazyan
Joanne Calderwood $8700 vs. Jennifer Maia $7500
I’m not sure this fight should be priced this far apart but I do agree with the verdict. Maia is a good athlete and a good grappler once things hit the mat. However, she isn’t much of a finisher and in 17 fights she has only 4 by way of Sub. Don’t let her 4 KO’s make you think that she is just as good on the feet because that just is not true. Her striking is pedestrian but what makes it serviceable is that she is a pretty athletic fighter. For someone that I see as being better on the Mat then she is anywhere else, she really doesn’t secure many takedowns, averaging only .25 per affair. She takes on Calderwood who is a very odd fighter to gauge but the one bead that you can put on her is that she is tough as nails and comes to fight every outing. She herself is much more of a decision rider as well, but she brings a very good well-rounded game with her, and her striking, in my eyes, is much better and technical then Maia. Even though I feel Maia has the grappling advantage on the ground, it is Calderwood that is averaging almost 2 takedowns per affair. Calderwood is going to need that technical ability to slow the fight down to her speed because Maia is the better athlete and if she lets Maia start leading the dance then she can get lost in translation somewhere. However, I don’t see that as the case. I see Calderwood start picking Maia apart on the feet in the later rounds after she really lays a bead on her. Calderwood isn’t someone who is going to come out firing right out of the gate. She will slowly start to roll as the fight unfolds itself to her. That can be a blessing and a curse in spots, but for this fight, I think she walks away with a decision victory here against Maia. I don’t see a finish on the horizon here.
The Pick: Calderwood
Vicente Luque $8800 vs. Randy Brown $7400
Really, really interesting fight here. Both of these men, in my eyes, are under-appreciated. Luque comes in with a very misleading 18-7 record and has been must-watch TV in his last few fights. With 10 wins by KO and 6 by way of Submission, Luque is extremely well rounded wherever the fight goes. However, Luque is known to really bait and be baited into some serious wars that don’t exactly reverse the aging process. You often wonder the shelf life of a fighter when they are dragged through muddy waters like he was in fights like Bam Bam, where it was literally just a fireworks display of bombs trading bombs. Even though he has a very good ground game, Luque trusts his power and his chin to sit in the pocket and trade for the majority of the time. It seems as if gets into these wars with people, gets stung, wakes up, fires back, and ends up holding the edge when all is said and done. However, how long is that really going to last? Eventually, you meet someone that will either understand range and distance, understand that pocket game or be willing to go ground with you. Randy Brown can be that fighter from a striking perspective. He is long, rangy, and has enough stick in his shot to put a burn at the end of his punches. With a 12-3 record, he has 6 by way of KO with some good names under his belt. He also has some losses that are concerning but it’s all a growing process and he seems to make adjustments every fight which is really important. After his very odd loss to Price, he has strung together two nice wins and is looking to keep the train rolling. I see a situation where Brown can really keep Luque on the outside, stay sharp, and outpoint him for 3. I can see Luque looking for desperation shots trying to really close the space and brown just keeping it moving. However, what I can see and what I see happening are two different things. I think Luque has too much faith in his chin that he is willing to just walk through fire to get into firing range and I think that is what he does. After a while, he will throw caution to the wind and just march forward on Brown. Depending on how clean and how much he has success touching brown up will be the driving force if this goes to the cards or not, but I do see a situation where Luque can get it done ITD, but even if he doesn’t I think he lands the more significant strikes in this one to sway the judges if it does go to the cards.
The Pick: Luque
Lando Vannata $8200 vs. Bobby Green $8000
When you think of Vannata, you think of a guy that has much more talent than his success. The guy is dynamic, talented and can get it done where he chooses, but his cage IQ and timing of implementing his game plans have been very very questionable in spots. Lando seems to fight up or down to his opposition which is very frustrating because for the most part he will lose a close decision or he will end up with a draw like he has 2 times in his UFC run. Lando is looking to get one of these draws back in this rematch against green in which he should have won but was deducted a point due to an illegal knee. Green is another fighter that is better than his record indicates. It seems as if he just can’t get that consistent footing he needs to tie a good run together. With a 25-10 record, Green has a very well rounded end rate with 9 by KO, 8 by sub and 8 by decision. Both of these guys metrics wise are very very close. Green is a Jekyll and Hyde type fighter himself. There are times he really comes in with this swag about him in which you can just see the confidence as he moves forward in his approach, and then there are other times in which he just looks lost. Both men to me are very matchup dependent and compliment each other well in that category. I am expecting Green to be the more polished fighter with more predictability in his approach. Tying his movements together with fluid yet fundamentals behind him, where Lando is going to fight very unchained with a lot less predictability. Depending on how disciplined Green is will be how he fares in the 2nd go around. If he is patient and understands how Vannata fights after their first outing then he will understand that fighting unchained does leave windows for entries and mistakes. This is where Green would need to really be patient and look to jump through. If he is not patient and decides to go into the storm with Vannata then it’s going to be Vannata coming out on the right side of this one. I feel as if both men have a vibe on each other now but I don’t see Green sitting on his hands being patient enough to really have those opportunities. Vannata is going to be active and Green will feel the need to match that as well to keep up with the scorecards, but it’s a style that fits Vannata more than it fits green. I am going Vannata here in what should be an entertaining fight between 2 fighters that are much better then their records indicate.
The Pick: Vannata
Kevin Holland $8900 vs. Trevin Giles $7300
Giles came into the UFC with a lot of steam behind him. With an undefeated record going into the UFC, with a notable win under his belt against Ryan Spann in LFA, Giles seemed primed to be a very good rising prospect. Now, under the UFC umbrella, he is starting to flatten the curve a bit dropping 2 of his last 3. You have to wonder if it’s the level of competition, that he isn’t really progressing or a little of both. It is one thing to be a promising prospect but it’s another thing to be able to add onto that foundation and make you a complete fighter. Giles has seemed to hit a little roadblock. It seems as if he is what he is at this point in time and he will need more if he wants to really make some waves. In his last fight he won a split decision over James Krause in which many people thought Krause won, but a good win against a talented and tough customer in Krause. In his 12 wins, he has 5 KOs and 5 Subs, and in his 2 losses, he has been subbed both times. Giles also has shown some cardio issues in the past that will need to be sealed up against a guy like Holland who really likes to use his length and range to keep things where he has a clear on the feet where he will have a big 7-inch reach advantage against Giles here. If you look at their resumes and runs in the UFC, it is clear that Holland just had a tougher strength of schedule and he seems to be meshing in a little better under the UFC umbrella. He has beaten guys that he should beat and also some guys that could have much more experience under their wings. Giles is still trying to find his footing before they really push him into the water without swimmies yet and this fight is probably the one test he is going to need to see where he stands. A perfect measuring stick that will actually force him to put his foot on the gas and get off that question mark line. He isn’t going to want to stand with Holland here and even though Holland is coming in on short notice, Giles doesn’t have the chops to really go toe to toe with Holland there. So he will need to get underneath and get inside where he can drag this to the ground or just make it a dirty and grimy fight. The issue with that is Holland has a good slippery and tricky ground game and whether he gets back to his feet or works from his guard, he isn’t going to be easy to secure top control on. Giles will give it a good go but Holland edges this one out using his attributes to keep the fight where he needs it to be.
The Pick: Holland
Jonathan Martinez $8600 vs. Frankie Saenz $7600
Martinez is a good fighter that has impressed me a bit more than I expected him to do so. He fights long and has a very sharp stand up that he tends to find his mark going forward and going backward. He really understands range management and has a confidence when it comes to standing tall and trading. However, He is facing a guy that has not been active but really likes to go to his wrestling to get things done on the ground. The thing that concerns me with Saenz is not his ability. He has the tools to win this fight but the lay off and the cardio is a bit of concern. More of the cardio. However, this is a very big test for Martinez. The way he handles the wrestling pedigree of Saenz early is going to tell a major tale. I think Saenz has success early on and I think the fight can even look promising for him in spots, but Martinez should be able to make the proper adjustments later to start wheeling back those rounds in a pretty close fight.
The Pick: Martinez
Gerald Meerschaert $8300 vs. Ed Herman $7900
I feel like Herman is one of those guys who has been around this banner forever and never really panned out to be a great fighter, but a solid journeyman. The funny thing with Herman is, that in some of his fights, he looks cringeworthy. After 3 straight to some very questionable talent, Herman storms back winning 2 straight, letting us all know that the 40-year-old is not done just yet. The Black Belt in BJJ under Fabiano Scherner holds a 25-14 record and to be honest that is about where it should be. That really tells his story. A good fighter but was always cusping but never cresting as a top tier fighter. In his 25 wins, he has 13 subs and 7 KOS. In his 14 losses, he has been subbed 6 times and knocked out 3 times. Herman is one of those guys that still loves to fight. You can tell when he loses how personal he takes it. He and The Pitbull are the 2 vets that really still have a thirst to do this. However, he is facing another vet that can match him in many departments with more experience and almost a decade younger (7). With a record of 31 – 13, Meerschaert has also had his ups and downs but on any given night can beat some pretty damn game fighters. He is 5-5 in his last 10 fights and dropped his last one by TKO against the always tough Ian Heinisch. The Black Belt under Roufusport Kickboxing and also a Black Belt in BJJ can really carry the fight wherever he chooses. In his 31 wins, he has 23 by way of submission and 6 by KO. In his 13 losses, he has been submitted 8 times. Funny that two guys with high pedigree grappling have been finished the most at their own game, so they are both susceptible to losing in their strengths. I feel as if Meerschaert is going to be a little sharper everywhere here. The striking and the grappling. Herman will bring that tough grit with him, and he is going to push forward until he is stopped or outworked, but I think Meerschart will be able to succeed one way or the other in this spot.
The Pick: Meerschaert
Ray Borg $9000 vs. Nate Maness $7200 (Canceled… See Below)
I mean, I am not going to spend too much time on this one. Manes comes to us with an 11-1 record, and he carries the torch of the same story we always see. The “Who has he fought” story to justify the record? He really hasn’t fought anyone really notable at all, but the kid does have a decent stand up. In his 11 wins, he has 4 KOs and one thing that he does noticeably well is time his right hand which has a lot of pop in it. In his 1 loss, he was KO’d. I get that Borg separated himself in June from a fight but this seems like a give me fight for him. The matchup is just not a good one for Maness. Borg, holds a 13-5 record and 1 KO and 6 Submissions. Borg is a tricky fighter to gauge at times. The guy is loaded with talent and is so good when he is dialed in and has a camp that is not interrupted by outside distractions. Mind you, not all of these distractions are his fault. He does have a very sick child that he is fighting tooth and nail to help, but he also has to hold some responsibility in some instances where he just couldn’t make weight. When Borg has good hands but his claim to fame is the pressure and the relentless attack on your hips to get you to the mat and once you are there, not many people can scramble with the slick grappling ace. Borg is like an escape artist on the ground if you get him into any sort of ground control. If you want to beat Borg on the cards you need to be ready to set a very high bar with pace. The pace game is where he wins and loses. So you can either try to keep up or nullify what he does well which isn’t easy. Finishing Borg is something that isn’t something that is on the menu often. He was only stopped one time in his career by one of the best to ever do it, DJ, and it took him 5 rounds to do it. Borg has fought far better challenges than the one that is in front of him on Saturday night. If he loses this fight, it would be a major step back in his career. I think he gets through.
The Pick: Borg
Johnny Munoz will now fill in for Ray Borg. Munoz is 10-0 and brings a very good pressure game with good solid wrestling and good top control. I think he will present the same type of problems that Borg does, and in the grand scheme of it all, the outcomes will be the same. One day’s notice is tough, but I think it will really allow him to lean on his wrestling even more to keep Maness at bay. Both fighters are split at $7200. So the value is there.
The Pick: Johnny Munoz
Markus Perez $8500 vs. Eric Spicely $7700 (Canceled)
Ever since LFA, there was something about Perez that I liked. He reminded me of Babalu. He has a fighting style that is choppy but effective. He moves forward with an extreme Muay Thai approach to his striking but when he is on the ground, his brown belt in BJJ starts to really rear its head. With a 12-3 record, the former LFA champion has 6 wins by way of Submission and 3 wins by KO. In his 3 losses, he has never been finished. Since entering the UFC he has been on an up and down roller coaster of wins and losses. The alarming thing is that he is better than the people he is losing to, but something just isn’t dialing in in some of his fights. Coming off a loss to Wellington Thurman, he will look to start a clean run against a very slick grappler in Eric Spicely. Spicely is another guy that has shown some nice things in the past but then will do something extremely boneheaded in another fight. With a record of 12-5, the black belt in BJJ has half of his wins via submission. However, in his 5 losses, he has some really questionable losses. You shouldn’t be getting subbed by Sam Alvey. I’m sorry you shouldn’t. Especially if you are a black belt in BJJ. Alvery has 3 submissions in almost 50 fights. Then 3 of his last 4 losses have all been by way of finish. He is another fighter that when things are floating in his direction, he looks very crisp. However, even when things are flowing for him, I have seen him make dire mistakes that would literally cost him the fight. I really believe that both men are talented but are victims of short cage IQ. Mistakes are made in most fights but when they become dire or numerous to cost you a fight then that is where the problem lies. In a fight like this where Spicely has been in and out of the UFC and Perez is still trying to grasp onto his initial traction, I think this is really his fight to win or lose. He is the more durable fighter and I find it hard to believe that Spicely is going to go 15 minutes without making some mistakes that Perez cant capitalize on. Hopefully, Perez can turn a little corner here because I do think he is good for the division and is a fun fight to watch in most cases.
The Pick: Perez
Timur Valiev $8400 vs. Jamall Emmers $7800 (Canceled)
Watching tape on Valiev there isn’t really a ton to dislike about the kid. He throws with heat, has very good leg kicks, moves very well in and out of range and can really do everything quite well. The Brown Belt under Almeida has a 14-2 record but if you really notice he isn’t the stark finisher with 8 wins by way of decision. There is a lot of hype around him and I can understand why to a point. However, Jamal Emmers is being overlooked here a bit. This is a kid who is big for the division, extremely athletic and looks to ground you if the opportunity presents itself. His striking can be sloppy at times, but his angles and his athletic ability keeps him a little more safe than someone overextending punches right over the centerline. I think Valiev is going to really wake emmers up in the 1st round with some pretty nasty sounding leg kicks, but as the time goes on I think emmers can slowly start to chip away and lead the dance. I’m going to take the dog here. I think Emmers can squeak this one out.
The Pick: Emmers
Vince Cachero will now face Emmers, and Emmers will move into a favorite position. Cachero is a very calculated fighter that pushes forward but with caution. In his fight against Casey Kenny, I noticed that he was doing a good job with being mindful of both levels and really just picking and choosing his spots wisely. However, Casey was able to find his mark several times while being on his bike and Emmers being a much better athlete with quicker angle creations and very good traps that he sets, I feel he will be able to really have success against Cachero here.
The Pick is Still Emmers
Price Change is Emmers $7800 vs. Cachero $6900
Chris Gutierrez $9200 vs. Cody Durden $7000
Not much to really say here. Gutierez was getting ready to fight Luke Sanders who is a tricky fighter with good wrestling but some terrible cage IQ. However, his style is very wrestling heavy in spots, So Guti’ was training for a specific style. He now takes on debuting fighter Durden, who really doesn’t have all that much to brag about outside of some decent wrestling and a pang of hunger to impress at his moment. I just find this as a really hard sell to me. There are certain guys that are ready. They may have sat on the regional circuit long enough and have all the skills in the world to hop right in and start their runs. However, I don’t see Durden as one of those guys. I am not saying that Guti’s any sort of Killer, but the kid is extremely solid and I would even dare to say underrated. Durden is really going to have to do everything in his power to get this fight to the ground and keep it there but I don’t see it happening.
The Pick: Gutierrez
UFC FIGHT NIGHT DFS
Derek Brunson $7100
There is value here because it is 3 rounds and not 5. In a 5 round fight, I would be really concerned that Shahbazyan will literally start to run away with this fight. However, 3 rounds and he is the much more seasoned fighter with a price like his, it’s hard to ignore it on a card that doesn’t have a ton of value.
Edmen Shahbazyan $9100
Not crazy about the price here. I know how good he seems to be and I respect that, but this is not a 5 round fight and he is fighting one of his if not his hardest test to date at only 22 years of age. I am picking him to win, but I will be underweight here.
Joanne Calderwood $8700
Not super high on her price here. A bit expensive for Calderwood, but she will put on a pace if Maia lets her. I think there is better value out there, but she won’t be a highly owned combatant. Especially in large field GPP.
Jennifer Maia $7500
She won’t need to have a huge night if she wins to cover her value. I have Calderwood here but Maia manages to get this into her wheelhouse and we can see the tables shift on the mat a bit. Not a fight that I am overly high on in its entirety tho.
Vicente Luque $8800
I will have some of this, both ways. Luque is always in line for a war and a highlight-reel finish. Randy Brown is a game fighter that is willing to give him that if it gets to that point. Not many carry their power late as well as Luque. If he connects its end game. I’m interested.
Randy Brown $7400
I am picking him to lose here, but the ability to stay long and rangy is working in his favor here. If he can stay out of a pocket fight with Luque and keep it moving then he has a very good chance to make this a very frustrating scrap for Luque. I’ll invest lightly on a card that really doesn’t have many promising dogs.
Lando Vannata $8200 / Bobby Green $8000
A fight that can be very active. This is a rematch and both guys are looking to right the ship on this one. I will have a heavier lean on Vannata here. His ability to be a little more dynamic and the momentum coming in knowing if that point was never deducted he would have won.
Kevin Holland $8900
Such a wildcard and he is always a risky play but the full camp, short camp or no camp he always is inline for a good night. I think his size and his ability to stay long will give Giles fits. I also think that if Giles takes him down, Holland is going to be able to be slippery, strong and long enough to get back to his feet where he will hold the clear edge.
Trevin Giles $7300
His window is to wrestle his way to victory here. I just don’t see him controlling Holland for 15 minutes.
Jonathan Martinez $8600
The kid has talent on the feet, and he is a young impressive prospect, but anytime you get a savvy vet wrestler that can bring that element to you, it can either hinder your ability to win or the ability to score. I am not high on this spot at this price.
Frankie Saenz $7600
He is a vet that really is predicated on if he can get going. Sometimes he does and sometimes he just can’t get going. He is going to be at an athletic and speed disadvantage here, but I think if he can get inside and underneath, he may be able to find the hips of Martinez. His cardio is a concern for me but like I said before, this card is really looking for some dog love and he is in line.
Gerald Meerschaert $8300 / Ed Herman $7900
Anytime I look at this fight, I don’t see Herman winning. However, he seems to just stroll on this steady state of solid but aging. Nothing surprises me with Herman, to be honest. One thing you know is that he is going to fight hard. Even if it’s an off night, Herman won’t lay down and die. He will really try to fight through it. That alone makes him dangerous. Although I do think Meerschaert wins this fight, depending on how much exposure you have the other way, it would be wise to pivot a bit with Herman for protection. However, exposure to Meerschaert is where the heavier shares will go.
Ray Borg $9000
In the higher $9k guys. I think Borg is always in line to cover his tag. I know this kid Maness seems promising to some, but the matchup does not suit him. I’ll have some Borg.
Nate Maness $7200
He was a fade for me, but now, he just can’t be. I will have more of Munoz here, but you need to play this both ways now.
Johnny Munoz $7200
This is a fight that you need both sides, and I would play this fight the way it’s priced. However, I am leaning on the late replacement a bit more here. I think his wrestling and his pressure will pose a problem in this matchup. Don’t sleep on him like you would a normal late replacement on one day’s notice.
Markus Perez $8500
Everyone that knows me, knows that I like Perez as a fighter in general. He needs to really tighten things up but I like his approach and mindset. He is a crowd pleaser and really looks to go for anything to spice the fight. However, mistakes are made that way. I’m willing to take my chances. I will have my exposure here.
Eric Spicely $7700
Spicely is a sneaky grappler with a good skill set but he more times than not shoots himself in the foot. It’s just what he does. If he wins, then great for him, but I am off him here.
Timur Valiev $8400
His leg kicks are a mainstay in his gameplan however, he isn’t a KO artist and Emmers should be able to keep up a pace with him. I will have more Emmers.
Jamall Emmers $7800
I like this kid. I just don’t think he opened up yet. He has a lot of really good tools to work with, but it seems the safety is still on the gun with him. If he takes the safety off, I am interested. More now against this new opposition.
Vince Cachero $6900
I know people love the dark horses, and although the kid isn’t a bad fighter, I think this is Emmers’ fight to win. Fade
Chris Gutierrez $9200
I think his price is inflated a bit here, but I am expecting him to win and he makes a very good cash game play for certain. However, He will most likely be higher owned in most formats. I would play him in spots but you are going to save all the money you can on this card. So sitting in the mid-tier may be your best bet. However, I will in fact have him in spots.
Cody Durden $7000
UFC FIGHT NIGHT VEGAS
Im either going to take a bath on this or hit for a good score. Fuck it… Hopefully I am on the right side of these. Not the greatest betting card and I will not hold it against you if you sit out or taper your units down. All my lock bets were canceled.
1 to win 1.15
1.5 to win 1
1.95 to win 1
1.5 to win 1
Holland/Gutierrez Parlay +105
2 units to win 2.10
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