eddie-gordon-tuf-19-finale1One of the prelims at UFC on FOX 15 is a three-round middleweight bout between Eddie Gordon and Chris Dempsey. According to the current betting lines available at 5Dimes Sportsbook, Gordon is a -400 favorite (bet $400 to win $100) while Dempsey is a +325 underdog (bet $100 to win $325). MMA oddsmaker Nick Kalikas opened up Gordon at -380 and Dempsey at +260, and action has come in on Gordon, driving his price to 4-to-1. Gordon (7-2) is the TUF 19 middleweight tournament winner. The 31-year-old Jamaican-American is 1-1 in the UFC with a first-round TKO win over Dhiego Lima and a second-round KO loss to Josh Samman. Gordon is nicknamed “Truck” because he packs a ton of power in his punches as we saw in his fight against Lima. He also has very good wrestling as we saw him control Samman for nearly two minutes on the mat before getting knocked out. The way the Samman fight played out is concerning because Gordon was looking good early on before fading late and getting finished, but going up against a guy like Dempsey, those flaws aren’t likely to be exposed. Still, the flaws are there, and it makes you wonder how high Gordon’s ceiling truly is. He’s still a pretty good middle-of-the-pack middleweight, though, and should beat most mid-tier fighters in the division, and not surprisingly he enters this fight over Dempsey as a big favorite as bettors look to fade his overmatched opponent. Dempsey (10-2) is 0-1 in the UFC with a first-round TKO loss to Ilir Latifi in his UFC debut, which he took on short notice at 205lbs. The 27-year-old American is now dropping back down to 185lbs, and I expect him to look better at this weight class, although I still do not believe he has a high ceiling in the sport. A veteran of the Pennsylvania regional circuit, Dempsey was riding an eight-fight win streak into his UFC debut before losing to Latifi. Now, he will look to rebound against Gordon, but it’s not an easy fight. Dempsey is a wrestler by trade, and he does has a decent ground game with his submissions and ground and pound, but Gordon is the better wrestler in this matchup and if Dempsey is forced to stay standing, we’ve seen he does not have a good chin and his striking defence is overall terrible. Dempsey hasn’t been given easy matchups in the UFC and he’s probably a bit better than I’m giving him credit for, but overall I just don’t think highly of him and neither do most bettors, which is why he’s a big dog this weekend. I like Gordon to win this fight and understand why the bettors are fading Dempsey. Here’s why. It’s hard to fully trust Gordon after seeing what happened to him in his last fight — his chin and cardio are question marks now, for sure — but I don’t see Dempsey beating him. I just feel like Gordon is better in pretty much every area of the game and I think he’ll bounce back after the KO loss to Samman and either knock Dempsey out or win a decision on the judges’ scorecards. The line is pretty high for a fighter coming off of a knockout loss, so it’s hard to recommend playing Gordon, but I do believe the TUF 19 winner will get his hand raised here and continue to move up the middleweight ranks by getting his hand raised over Dempsey.