UFC 155: Preview, Predictions and Bets

Moped, KC SportsNation’s UFC expert

There are several good fights tonight that start on Facebook and then roll over to FX and eventually PPV. The weigh-in was uneventful as far as fighters missing weight. There were some things to be noted from it and are reflected below.

Cain Velasquez vs. Junior dos Santos – this is a fight that has a lot of intrigue around it. JDS won the first fight on Fox with a 1st round TKO. Immediately after the fight, there was speculation that Velasquez had a knee injury. That is certainly true and it is widely believed that it hampered his ability to take down JDS. However, JDS also had a knee injury (torn meniscus) and had surgery after the fight.

The betting line on this fight has bounced around a lot. It started around -155 for JDS and climbed to -220. It has since settled in at -190. Most experts have JDS winning and very few see it going the distance. The experts picking Velasquez have it going the distance. There is wide agreement that Velasquez has to take him down and ground and pound (he has no submissions yet). If the fight remains standing, then JDS is a prohibitive favorite.

There are several problems I see with Velasquez winning the belt. First, he has not fought the level of competition that JDS has. His best wins are Lesnar (who battled serious health issues and has since retired), a Nogueira brother and Bigfoot Silva. JDS has beat Frank Mir (good wrestling and BJJ), Roy Nelson (another good wrestler with heavy hands), Shane Carwin (heavy hands) and, yes, Velasquez. Secondly, Velasquez admits he will not try to trade with JDS. JDS is three inches taller and hits like a mule kick. However, most fighters have had that plan against JDS. He has a great jab and decent kicks, which prevents wrestlers getting close enough to take him down. Further bad news, JDS is Brazilian and just earned his black belt in BJJ. Taller fighters tend to be able to cover up ground and pounders because they have the legs to control the body of the guy on top. Some people believe he can wear out JDS with his great cardio. When has JDS ever been tired in a fight? I really do not believe that Velasquez can take JDS down, keep him down (long fighters will post their arm and crawl up the cage) or finish him on the ground (JDS presumably has better BJJ). Velasquez will have to take the center of the octagon and force JDS against the cage where his avenues of escape will be few. That is not easy to do with a great striker who has the reach on you. JDS has never been rocked with a strike, while Velasquez has been touched. If you are looking for value, take JDS inside the distance, which is -140. There have been only two fighters in the UFC who have gone the distance with JDS and both had pizza faces after the fight. And, remember, those fights only went three rounds. Taking the punishment for five rounds from JDS is almost unimaginable. Take JDS to win.

Joe Lauzon vs. Jim Miller – this is the co-main event and it will be a good fight. Miller is -215 and has fought elite competition. He is an outstanding wrestler who will gradually look for an opening to submit his opponent. His striking is certainly solid, but he is just a very tough guy who has many of his fights go to the cards. Lauzon is the polar opposite. He goes for broke. In his last eight fights, he has either received the bonus for Fight of the Night or Submission of the Night. Even his losses are dramatic. He has a little bit of a reach advantage and has good striking, but he wants to get Miller on the ground and submit him. He has never won a decision (cardio issues related to his pace) and he has 18 submissions in his 22 fights. Lauzon has been maturing as a fighter and trying to pace himself more, but eventually this is going to the ground and something has to give. This is a fight to stay away from even though Miller is an overwhelming pick by the experts. Lauzon is very dangerous. I would recommend the prop bet of inside the distance, which is -175.

Costa Philippou vs. Tim Boetsch – this is not a fight that moves the needle much. Philippou is known for being a good boxer, but his fights usually go to the judges. Boetsch has seen his stock rise, but he is a pretty boring fighter as well. Boetsch is barely favored which is hard to understand. He has clearly fought the better competition, albeit unimpressively. He is the stronger fighter. Experts are favoring him heavily. He was supposed to fight Chris Weidman – who got injured – so he should be in very good shape because Weidman would have ended his time on Earth. Boetsch is a good value at -120. The other good bet here is -190 for this fight going to the judges. (The best way to judge those props is to look at their most recent history, because it shows the better competition they have faced. Philippou has gone the distance in five of the last six fights and Boetsch has had 4 of the last 6 [no stoppages in the first round].)

Alan Belcher vs. Yushin Okami – this is probably my favorite fight of the night. The line has fluctuated a little bit, but Okami has been a slight favorite for the most part. The experts also generally believe Okami is going to win. I just don’t get it. Belcher has been on a roll lately and finishing fights quickly. He has good hands and is extremely underrated on the ground. When he fought Palhares, it seemed almost intentional that Belcher went to the ground to prove he could escape Palhares’ heel hook. Palhares collects legs in the octagon better than anyone and Belcher repeatedly escaped it. Joe Rogan almost had a miscarriage watching this happen. Belcher remained calm and then pummeled him with strikes. Belcher fought Okami back in 2006 at UFC 62. That is how long ago it was. Belcher was a raw fighter who was fighting in the UFC at the age of 22 and it was his first fight there. He has battled injuries, but he is widely respected. Some believe he should be on the short list for Anderson Silva to fight. When you look at world rankings, he is listed anywhere between 4–8, while Okami is at the bottom of the Top 10 or has low as 16. Experts believe Okami wins a decision. I don’t see this going the distance. Okami has lost his last two to KO (Silva and Boetsch); Belcher has improved more since the last fight; and Belcher looks to be in tremendous condition. I love him to win the fight and look for it to go inside the distance. Belcher is +201 inside the distance. If not, take him to win the fight at -105.

Derek Brunson vs. Chris Leben – this is a tough fight and it is probably wise to stay away. This is your classic newbie versus salty veteran. Leben is a warrior and really brings it. He used to have a great chin and would just weather the storm, so he could take down the fighter to submit him.  While he looked great at the weigh-in, his brain scan would be different. Brunson is new to the UFC coming over from Strikeforce. He has lost his last two fights, but was a D2 All-American wrestler. If you take anything, take inside the distance as Leben is a crowd pleaser and it will end one way or another with someone going night night (-165).

Brad Pickett vs. Eddie Wineland – this is where I get a little sketchy on the fighters. I’ve seen Pickett fight and he brings it. Great power (he comes from England’s bare knuckle history) and very entertaining. Wineland has a similar reputation. Experts really like Wineland, they all agree it will be close. Most see a decision, but I will be going with the inside the distance prop (-115). If you want to pick a fun prop bet, take this for the Fight of the Night at +400.

Erik Perez vs. Byron Bloodworth – no opinion on this one. Experts like Perez a lot in this fight. Perez is -465. Bloodworth has only fought once in the UFC and lost a decision to Mike Easton. Perez is 2–0.

Jamie Varner vs. Melvin Guillard – this fight was supposed to happen three weeks ago, but Varner was vomiting so much the Nevada Fight Commission stopped the fight from happening. These guys cut so much weight that their bodies just shut down sometimes. This will be a very entertaining fight. I liked Guillard last time, but he was too pumped up at the weigh-in. I am not sure whom to pick now, but it ain’t going to the judges (-300).

Myles Jury vs. Michael Johnson – these are two veterans of the Ultimate Fighter (TUF). However, Johnson was on the show in 2010 and Jury was this year’s edition. Those two years of growth are huge. Johnson has looked good lately and should be the superior fighter here. Experts love Johnson, too. Take him at -230.

Phil De Fries vs. Todd Duffee – not a lot on these fighters from watching them, but there is a very enticing prop bet. Combined, these two fighters have fought about 20 times. One has gone to the cards. This is very common for heavyweights. Duffee has only seen the 3rd round once in nine fights with seven being in the first round. Even at -400, you have to love inside the distance.

Leonard Garcia vs. Max Holloway – Garcia is a very entertaining punching bag. He will fight like the drunk in the parking lot. However, he is just not very good. Holloway is a polished fighter with lots of reach. I just don’t see how Garcia can win here. Take Holloway at -400.

John Moraga vs. Chris Cariaso – no personal knowledge of either guy. Cariaso seems go the distance all the time. However, that is -230 so there isn’t a lot there.


  1. I wish to voice my love for your kind-heartedness supporting all those that should have guidance on this one area of interest. Your real commitment to getting the message along was pretty interesting and has continuously allowed many people much like me to get to their objectives. Your entire important report indicates so much to me and much more to my peers. Thank you; from all of us.

  2. I simply wanted to write a comment in order to appreciate you for those awesome steps you are posting on this site. My long internet research has at the end been recognized with extremely good facts and strategies to write about with my two friends. I ‘d say that most of us site visitors are unquestionably fortunate to be in a wonderful place with so many awesome people with very helpful tips and hints. I feel really blessed to have used your entire site and look forward to some more excellent moments reading here. Thank you once again for all the details.

  3. I am just commenting to make you know what a fantastic experience my cousin’s daughter developed using yuor web blog. She even learned such a lot of things, which included how it is like to possess a great teaching mood to get folks with ease fully grasp several very confusing things. You actually did more than readers’ expectations. Many thanks for offering the powerful, trusted, edifying and as well as easy thoughts on the topic to Ethel.

  4. Thank you a lot for giving everyone an extraordinarily nice possiblity to check tips from this website. It can be very brilliant plus full of amusement for me and my office mates to visit your site particularly three times weekly to learn the newest stuff you have. And of course, I’m so at all times amazed with all the effective techniques you give. Certain two areas in this post are undeniably the most suitable I’ve had.

  5. I needed to compose you that little observation just to say thanks yet again for those lovely views you’ve featured in this article. It was so tremendously open-handed of people like you to present unhampered all that most people would’ve offered as an e book to make some dough for themselves, even more so now that you might well have done it in case you considered necessary. Those advice as well served as the fantastic way to recognize that many people have similar fervor similar to mine to learn much more with respect to this issue. I think there are many more pleasurable occasions ahead for those who take a look at your website.

  6. I wish to convey my love for your generosity supporting persons who must have help with your field. Your real commitment to getting the solution all over came to be surprisingly effective and has truly enabled somebody just like me to attain their targets. This valuable facts entails a lot a person like me and further more to my mates. Best wishes; from everyone of us.

  7. I am writing to let you understand of the remarkable encounter our princess obtained studying your web site. She noticed a lot of issues, including what it is like to have an excellent helping nature to have certain people clearly master chosen multifaceted matters. You really exceeded my expected results. Thanks for producing the necessary, healthy, edifying and as well as unique tips on that topic to Sandra.

  8. I just wanted to write a small comment in order to express gratitude to you for these fantastic ideas you are posting at this site. My time consuming internet investigation has now been honored with reasonable concept to share with my friends. I ‘d mention that many of us website visitors actually are unquestionably fortunate to exist in a magnificent website with so many wonderful people with very beneficial guidelines. I feel somewhat grateful to have discovered your web page and look forward to many more fun moments reading here. Thanks a lot once more for a lot of things.

  9. I and my guys have been looking through the good information on the blog and before long got a horrible suspicion I never expressed respect to the web blog owner for those secrets. Those young boys were definitely totally stimulated to study all of them and have in effect without a doubt been taking advantage of them. Thank you for indeed being well kind and also for choosing varieties of really good issues millions of individuals are really desperate to discover. My honest apologies for not saying thanks to sooner.

  10. My spouse and i have been very comfortable Albert managed to complete his studies while using the precious recommendations he obtained using your web site. It is now and again perplexing to just find yourself offering techniques which many people have been selling. And we fully grasp we’ve got the blog owner to appreciate because of that. Those illustrations you’ve made, the straightforward website navigation, the friendships you will help to engender – it is many sensational, and it is letting our son in addition to the family consider that the subject matter is cool, and that is extremely essential. Thank you for all the pieces!

  11. I’m commenting to let you understand what a impressive experience my friend’s princess developed going through your webblog. She mastered many things, which included what it is like to possess an ideal teaching style to get most people without hassle thoroughly grasp specified complex issues. You truly did more than our own expectations. Thank you for imparting those beneficial, dependable, educational and even fun tips on this topic to Sandra.

  12. A lot of thanks for your own hard work on this web site. Betty delights in engaging in investigation and it’s really easy to see why. My partner and i learn all of the compelling manner you provide important things via this web site and foster contribution from the others on that theme while our daughter is in fact discovering a lot of things. Take pleasure in the remaining portion of the new year. You’re doing a stunning job.

  13. I and also my buddies have already been checking the great helpful tips found on your site and then all of a sudden developed an awful feeling I never thanked the blog owner for those techniques. All the people happened to be for that reason stimulated to learn them and now have in actuality been taking advantage of those things. Appreciate your turning out to be quite kind and then for selecting this kind of brilliant ideas most people are really desperate to discover. My very own honest apologies for not expressing appreciation to you sooner.

  14. I just wanted to construct a brief word so as to thank you for these wonderful guides you are sharing on this website. My time intensive internet research has at the end been rewarded with good quality tips to write about with my friends and family. I would declare that we website visitors actually are very blessed to exist in a really good website with very many wonderful individuals with valuable strategies. I feel somewhat privileged to have discovered the website and look forward to many more brilliant moments reading here. Thanks a lot once more for a lot of things.

  15. I enjoy you because of every one of your efforts on this blog. Ellie really loves managing investigations and it is obvious why. We know all relating to the lively form you deliver both interesting and useful guides by means of the web blog and even boost response from other people about this subject plus my girl is now understanding a lot of things. Enjoy the rest of the year. You are performing a brilliant job.

  16. I wanted to jot down a quick message to say thanks to you for all the fantastic steps you are giving on this website. My rather long internet search has at the end been compensated with incredibly good content to talk about with my close friends. I would assume that many of us visitors are unquestionably endowed to exist in a fabulous network with very many perfect professionals with great tips and hints. I feel really grateful to have come across the web pages and look forward to some more entertaining moments reading here. Thank you once more for all the details.

  17. I have to convey my appreciation for your kindness supporting individuals that have the need for help with in this niche. Your real commitment to getting the solution around came to be particularly productive and has constantly permitted associates much like me to realize their targets. Your amazing important facts means a lot to me and a whole lot more to my office workers. Best wishes; from everyone of us.

  18. I must show my appreciation to you just for bailing me out of such a problem. After checking throughout the search engines and obtaining recommendations that were not productive, I was thinking my life was done. Being alive devoid of the solutions to the problems you’ve solved by way of your entire short post is a critical case, as well as the ones that could have in a wrong way damaged my career if I hadn’t discovered your site. Your own personal skills and kindness in dealing with every aspect was precious. I don’t know what I would’ve done if I had not discovered such a stuff like this. It’s possible to at this moment look forward to my future. Thank you very much for your expert and sensible guide. I will not hesitate to suggest the sites to anybody who would need guide about this problem.

  19. I simply desired to appreciate you all over again. I’m not certain what I would have achieved without those recommendations documented by you directly on such a field. It had become a intimidating concern for me, nevertheless looking at the well-written technique you treated it made me to leap with delight. Extremely grateful for your work and even sincerely hope you comprehend what a powerful job you are always undertaking educating the rest through a web site. Most probably you have never got to know any of us.

  20. I want to voice my love for your kindness for all those that really need assistance with this particular topic. Your real commitment to getting the message along ended up being exceptionally significant and has continuously permitted some individuals like me to attain their ambitions. Your amazing informative guidelines can mean this much to me and far more to my office workers. Regards; from each one of us.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *