The UFC today announced that a light heavyweight bout between Mauricio “Shogun” Rua and Chael Sonnen will headline the upcoming UFC on FOX Sports 1 1 card, which takes place August 17 in Boston, MA. The fight was supposed to take place at next weekend’s UFC 161 event, but visa issues prevented Sonnen from getting into Canada on short notice. This is a good fight between two solid 205ers but it’s utterly ridiculous that Rua was pulled off of the UFC 161 card completely. Fans in Winnipeg, Manitoba bought tickets to see Rua perform live in person and for the second year in a row he was pulled off a card in Canada entirely after his opponent was injured. But the fans in Boston get the fight and it should be a good one. Rua is one of the most devastating strikers at 205 while Sonnen is one of the best wrestlers, and now with both men getting a full training camp it should be a very interesting fight. I see the fight opening up as a Pick ’em of around -115 each way but the public may very well go in hard on Sonnen, as he can definitely wrestle Rua to a decision, especially now that he’ll be in good shape on a full camp. As well, the UFC added a bantamweight bout between Michael McDonald and Brad Pickett and a bantamweight bout between Urijah Faber and Yuri Alcantara to this card. Both of these fights should be very exciting and both are very hard to pick. Although I expect Faber to open up as a favorite over Alcantara due to his name, the fight between McDonald and Pickett screams ‘Pick ’em.’ And finally, a light heavyweight bout between Cody Donovan and Ovince St-Preux was added to the card. Expect St-Preux to enter as a -200 favorite or perhaps even higher. More Bouts Added To UFC on FOX Sports 1 2 The UFC added a few fights to the UFC on FOX Sports 1 2 card. They are: Kelvin Gastelum vs. Paulo Thiago Sara McMann vs. Sarah Kaufman Bubba McDaniel vs. Brad Tavares James Head vs. Bobby Voelker These are all interesting fights but the one that stands out the most is McMann vs. Kaufman. This is an excellent fight between two of the best female fighters in the world and I expect the winner to be right in line for a title shot. This is a close fight so don’t be surprised if it opens around a Pick ’em. UFC 163 Card Grows The UFC also added new fights to UFC 163. They are: Robert Drysdale vs. Ednaldo Oliveira Amanda Nunes vs. Sheila Gaff Rani Yahya vs. Josh Clopton The most interesting fight of the bunch is definitely Drysdale vs. Oliveira. Although Drysdale will be making his UFC debut in Brazil, he carries a huge grappling advantage into this fight and if Oliveira got subbed by Gabriel Gonzaga then I see Drysdale doing the same thing. I expect Drysdale to open up at -300 and the public may bet him up to -500 in this fight. Bendo vs. Grant To Headline UFC 164 The UFC also confirmed that the lightweight title fight between Benson Henderson and TJ Grant will headline the UFC 164 card. This is an absolutely exceptional fight but because of Henderson’s dominance as a champion you can expect he opens up as a healthy -200 favorite and possibly even higher over Grant, who is certain to be the underdog. Saffiedine Out, Bahadurzada vs. Lawler Now On Tap For UFC on FOX 8 An injury to Tarec Saffiedine has forced him out of a planned matchup against Robbie Lawler at UFC on FOX 8 and now it will be Lawler vs. Siyar Bahadurzada. This should be a very exciting stand-up fight but expect Lawler to open at -200 or even higher after how poorly Bahadurzada looked in his last outing against Dong Hyun Kim.
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