UFC 152: September 22, 2012 Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Ontario UFC Light Heavyweight Contender Matt Hamill (-375) Profile: Deaf from a young age, Matt Hamill (10-4) has overcome his fair share of hurdles. Being singled out for his inability to hear pushed him to excel in wrestling, a sport his family had deep roots in and saw him eventually become a top Division III prospect without letting his impairment affect him. In 2005, Hamill joined the sport of MMA and showed prowess in his stand-up abilities as well as being able to dictate where the match goes with his wrestling base. The 35-year-old New Yorker would enter the UFC at 1-0 and go on to enjoy a 9-4 mark, including a controversial disqualifcation win over UFC light heavyweight champ Jon Jones due to illegal elbows, before briefly retiring after suffering consecutive losses for the first time in his career during the summer of 2011. UFC Light Heavyweight Contender Roger Hollett (+285) Profile: Roger “The Hulk” Hollett (13-3) is a born fighter. Raised by his boxing and kickboxing champion father Ralph Hollett, who showed him the ways of fighting, he is well-acquainted with this lifestyle. Like many Canadian-raised fighters, Hollett spent a solid amount of time on the Canadian MMA circuit, beginning in 2006 when he started his pro career, including stints in the Maximum Fighting Championship and other minor organizations. In November of 2011, he got a call from a major organization and earned himself a qualifying win that would have entered him into the Season Seven Bellator Light Heavyweight Tournament, but he bypassed that opportunity for a contract with the UFC instead. The 33-year-old Nova Scotia native was originally scheduled to fight Matt Hamill at UFC 152 until a contract dispute with Bellator initially took him off the card, and he was replaced by Vladimir Matyushenko. But in a strange turn of events, Matyushenko got hurt and the contract situation was rectified, putting Hollett back on the 152 card for his UFC debut against Hamill. Opening UFC 152 Odds Analysis: MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas has made Hamill a big -375 favorite (bet $375 to win $100) against Hollett, who opened as a +285 underdog (bet $100 to win $285) according to the MMA odds. Hamill has a huge edge in experience here, and the only real question mark is whether or not he will be motivated enough to take on a lesser opponent in his first bout out of retirement. He has fought the likes of Jones, Tim Boetsch, Michael Bisping, Rich Franklin, Mark Munoz, Keith Jardine, Quinton Jackson and Tito Ortiz , going 5-3 against them with three of the wins coming as a result of stoppages (including the DQ against Jones). Hollett has obviously not fought anywhere near the same level of competition, going a full three rounds in two of his last three bouts after not seeing any of his first nine fights go into the second. He did go a full five rounds in losing the MFC light heavyweight title to Emanuel Newton via unanimous decision while five of Hamill’s 14 bouts have gone the distance. Hollett simply looks to be overmatched in this spot, especially if Hamill is in top form and looking to make a statement after his brief layoff of a little more than a year.
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