The upcoming UFC Fight Night 68 card has been strengthened by the addition of a middleweight bout between Brazilians Daniel Sarafian and Ricardo Abreu. Sarafian, a TUF Brazil 1 alum, is 2-3 overall in the UFC with a TKO win over Antonio dos Santos and a submission win over Eddie Mendez, with decision losses to Cezar Mutante and CB Dollaway and a submission loss to Kiichi Kunimoto. Sarafian, who is now 32 years old, entered the TUF Brazil 1 house three years ago with a ton of fanfare, but he never quite lived up to the hype because he kept getting injured. Although he is a pretty solid mixed martial artist, he has had a problem finding the right weight class for himself, and it’s caused him to bounce around between middleweight and welterweight in the UFC, generally without any success. After earning the first knockout win of his career in his return to welterweight in his last outing against dos Santos (a TKO stoppage via injury, mind you), Sarafian is going to stick around middleweight for the time being, but the UFC sure isn’t doing him any favors by matching him up against Abreu, who is a talented prospect. Abreu, a TUF Brazil 3 contestant, is still technically undefeated in his pro career at 5-0, but he did lose by split decision to Marcio “Lyoto” Alexandre Jr. in the house, which is obviously something to keep in mind, However, he bounced back from his loss on the reality show with a third-round submission win over Wagner Silva at the TUF Brazil 3 Finale, showing that is he is a pretty solid prospect in the process. At 30 years of age, Abreu is no spring chicken to be sure, but he is a pretty solid fighter who has finished all of his pro fights and with his solid ground game, he can definitely take out fighters like Sarafian who have questionable submission defence, which is why I think people will favor Abreu in this spot despite him not having as big of a name. As far as the line goes, even though Sarafian has got a ton of his respect throughout his career from bettors, I don’t think he’ll get too much respect here. I expect a close line, but in my mind anyways, Abreu deserves to be the favorite here, and if he for whatever reason opens at plus money for this fight in June I’ll have to bet on him based on principal alone as I just don’t think Sarafian should be favored over many fighters at this point of time. UFC Fight Night 68 takes place June 6 at Smoothie King Arena in New Orleans, Louisiana, and is headlined by a five-round light heavyweight matchup between Ryan Bader and Daniel Cormier. The co-main event of the evening is expected to feature a heavyweight bout between Matt Mitrione and Ben Rothwell. As well, a middleweight bout between Tim Boetsch and the legend Dan Henderson also takes place at this event.
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