MMA Odds and Ends for Friday: Dillashaw vs. Garbrandt 2 Set For UFC 227
Though we have lost quite a few UFC bouts in the coming days, there are also thankfully a few new ones to report on in today's MMA odds and Ends:
Nathaniel Wood vs. Johnny Eduardo, UFC Fight Night 131
A bantamweight matchup between UFC newcomer Nathaniel Wood and UFC veteran Johnny Eduardo has been added to UFC Fight Night 131, which is set to take place Friday, June 1 at Adirondack Bank Center in Utica, New York. The bout was first reported by Chisanga Malata following an initial report of Wood's signing by Jim Edwards of MMANytt.com. Wood (13-3) is the Cage Warriors bantamweight champion and recently defended his title a few weeks ago. The 24-year-old Brit is currently on a five-fight win streak with all of those wins coming by stoppage and is looking like a really good prospect at 135lbs. Eduardo (28-11) is 3-3 overall in the UFC. The Brazilian is 37-years-old now and he barely fights, averaging one bout a year since debuting with the UFC in 2011. He's a dangerous striker with knockout power and has put on great performances at times inside the Octagon, but his wrestling and chin are a problem these days, as he's coming off of a TKO loss to Matthew Lopez. Though Eduardo has more UFC experience, I'm expecting Wood to open as the favorite here given his status as one of the bantamweight division's top prospects.
Ricardo Lamas vs. Mirsad Bektic, UFC 225
A featherweight fight between Ricardo Lamas and Mirsad Bektic will take place at UFC 225, according to a report from Combate. The stacked pay-per-view card takes place Saturday, June 9 at United Center in Chicago, Illinois. Lamas (18-6) is 9-4 overall in the UFC. The long-time featherweight contender was brutally knocked out by Josh Emmett in his last fight and badly needs to bounce back with a win and prove he's still a true title contender. Bektic (12-1) is 5-1 overall in the UFC. After losing in shocking fashion to Darren Elkins, he bounced back with a TKO win over Godofredo Pepey. I'm expecting a close betting line here, with perhaps a slight lean towards the younger, more athletic Bektic to get the victory.
CM Punk vs. Mike Jackson, UFC 225
UFC president Dana White also confirmed the rumored CM Punk vs. Mike Jackson fight is set for UFC 225. Punk (0-1) and Jackson (0-1) both lost to Mickey Gall in their respective UFC debuts. Both men are not full-time MMA fighters, as Punk is a former WWE superstar and Jackson is an MMA jouranlist. However, at least Jackson had some amateur fighting experience from before. The odds are already out for this fight and Jackson is a solid favorite, and I only expect that line to grow as bettors fade Punk, who is 39 and has a history of concussions.
TJ Dillashaw vs. Cody Garbrandt, UFC 227
A bantamweight title rematch between champion TJ Dillashaw and challenger Cody Garbrandt is set to headline UFC 227, which is scheduled to take place Saturday, August 4 at Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. The bout was reported by Brett Okamoto of ESPN.com. Dillashaw (15-3) is 11-3 overall in the UFC and is currently riding a three-fight win streak, with a KO win over Garbrandt at UFC 217 winning him back the belt he lost to Dominick Cruz a few years back. The 32-year-old has won seven of his last eight fights and is the best bantamweight fighter in the world right now. Garbrandt (11-1) is 6-1 overall in the UFC with his only career loss coming against Dillashaw. Prior to that Garbrandt had defeated Cruz to win the belt in a dominant performance back at UFC 207, and was looking like he had few flaws in his game. But Dillashaw exposed him a bit back at UFC 217 when he took the title. I picked Dillashaw to win the first fight as the underdog but this time around he should be favored to defend his title considering how the last bout went.
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Mixed martial arts journalist. Lead writer for MMAOddsbreaker.com and also featured at @MMARatingsNet, @mmanews_com and @fightodds_io.
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