If you missed Saturday’s fights and it wasn’t due to work or your wife going into labor then shame on you Cerci. Don’t listen to me or any self-proclaimed experts. The Blessed Era hasn’t gone anywhere!
Max Holloway must have read my article trashing him for not evolving his mixed martial arts game any farther than boxing with takedown defense. Don’t get me wrong. He was already one of the best to ever do that and still is but I felt he needed to throw more kicks, knees, and elbows in his striking game.
Well, we lost our pick on Kattar and it appeared that we would have lost that bet at least 9 times out of 10. Either way, it is just one loss and it was on a (+155) fighter who I thought was the better boxer out of him and Max.
Significant strikes landed for @BlessedMMA – 445
Previous record – 290
— UFC (@ufc) January 16, 2021
Boy or boy was I wrong. Max Holloway boxed Calvin Kattar up with any and every shot he wanted to. The former world champion’s pace is always a hot one that makes mice of the manliest men but he turned that up even farther.
Then he did it again. Then the knob broke off of the stereo and Holloway just starting talking to DC and the other announcers when he wasn’t talking or motioning to Calvin simply “letting him know” he was getting his butt kicked.
Okay, all joking aside for a second. This fight did get uncomfortable. It could have been stopped in the third round, in my opinion, but Kattar would land an absolute bomb every now and again. I suppose when you see 50 of your opponents strikes for every 5 of your’s, you do have the ability to set up a big one.
I just don’t understand why Calvin Kattar and better yet, how he didn’t go down and out at any point in the final 15 minutes. He was getting tagged the whole but it just seemed like enough was enough by the midway point of the fight.
Max Holloway put us all in check. Even his rival, the man who took his belt, Alexander Volkanovski tweeted out mid-fight “Daaaaaaa**n.
Everyone who has ever fought an MMA fight or cornered a guy or gal should know that the level is higher now. In one night, the evolution of mixed martial arts has accelerated up several levels. Oh wait, is that just Max?
Did he just level up on the entire rest of MMA like that? That’s what it feels like. I have to be honest. I am admittedly a huge Conor McGregor fan and I think he is going to beat Dustin Poirier fairly handily this Saturday night from Fight Island in Abu Dhabi.
Mystic Mac has given his prediction 🔮
— UFC (@ufc) January 17, 2021
I will say this, though. Before I went to bed on Saturday night, I laid there and thought about what I had just seen, and then I said something to myself that was blasphemous as it was surprising.
I said: Max would have beaten Conor today. I don’t care what McGregor shows up. Calvin Kattar is not that bad. In fact, he is a top five UFC Featherweight so you can’t just write off what Max Holloway was trying to do.
I don’t know if Holloway has always had these 8 limbed tricks in his bag and was just waiting for the perfect time to bust them out or what but he clammed up much of the media who said his style needed to evolve or even that he had taken too much damage.
More numbers from @BlessedMMA's historic night:
Distance strikes landed – 439
Significant head strikes landed – 274
Significant body strikes landed – 117
Significant strikes landed in a round – 141
— UFC (@ufc) January 16, 2021
I don’t care how much Max has taken in his career. I know it’s a high number but I would be willing to bet that he did more damage to Calvin Kattar in one night than has been done to him competing inside the Octagon for his entire career.
We have a massive week ahead of us and all over us right now it feels like because we have a Fight Night show on Wednesday headlined by two grapple-heavy UFC Welterweights, Michael Chiesa and Neil Magny.
Then, on Saturday night from Fight Island in Abu Dhabi, four of the UFC’s top Lightweight contenders face in the co-main and main events of the pay per view event.
Five more sleeps.
— UFC (@ufc) January 18, 2021
Any betting odds we use today are brought to you by the good folks over at BetOnline.AG. Let’s recap our betting performance from this past Saturday and look ahead to what is next and how we can make some money this Wednesday and Saturday nights.
- I haven’t been looking forward to this but it is what it is
- We did win all three of our plus money golf bets this weekend which puts us up at around 119% return on our investment since The Masters
- Our first betting play of the night was on Austin Lingo. I heard from some sources that the kid he was fighting, Jacob Kilburn, was not ready for the UFC
- He fought hard, though, but Lingo won a 30-27 unanimous decision
- Next up, we had Ramzan Emeev to win by decision and he did just that
- Some weirdo judge gave the fight to David Zawada but luckily there was only one bad apple in that decision
- Time for me to feel stupid
- I was all over Dusko Todorovic for weeks. I picked him in two different previews I think and then again on a straight play
- To make matters worse, I had him and Puna to go over 1.5
- That didn’t happen. Dusko looked incredible for most of the fight
- You could tell that his overconfident defense could potentially catch up with him at any given moment
- His head movement and chin floating worked like a charm until it didn’t. Lights for the Serbian. I will back him in his next fight, though
- I think the UFC will give him a step down because he is a very good fighter and ultra exciting. Someone’s 0 had to go
- And here comes my crowning achievement for the weekend. I did not hear about one other capper, Youtuber, or any of my friends who thought Alessio Di Chirico was going to defeat Joaquin Buckley
- I knew that Alessio was a terrible stylistic matchup for him but the Italian has been known to be passive at times and not take advantage of opportunities
- Well, he shored that one up! Buckley, already the significantly shorter athlete, lowered his level and dipped to his left
- That’s when the experience and more importantly, the newfound trigger pull led to the head kick victory in a flash
- I was proud of that one but soon started to cry once more
- Our parlay anchor, a fighter coming off of a 2-year layoff with a dangerous opponent, got knocked early
- A lot of people had Ponz as their anchor or at least in a parlay or two and in one clip of the mandible and it was all over
- In the co-main, Carlos Condit and Matt Brown grappled their way to a very close decision because hey, everyone saw that coming
- We took Condit and he won, barely. Well the judges were unanimous 30-27 but I admit some of them were or a hot mess this past weekend
- Finally, the main event we already spoke about. I’m glad I didn’t try to add any prop bets. We bet on Kattar at (+155) which I thought was a good number but we soon learned that maybe (+1555) was a little bit more accurate.
- We didn’t make profit because of the Ponz loss that screwed up our parlay but here is our record of just calling the fight
- We were 4-3 with one (+230) win and the others were (-240) (-220) and (-180). Our losses were (+155) (-160) and (-300)
- We did not have a great night but guys, it wasn’t due to a lack of effort. I have been putting in a lot of hours but sometimes you’re just wrong. I was dead wrong about the main event
- If you followed our golf picks, though, and bet those guys, then this still would have been a profitable weekend
- You like that excuse? Pitiful, isn’t it?
- I just want you guys to know they’re there because we are hot at the moment
- Now, let’s take a look at some of this week’s best betting lines from BetOnline.AG and tip a winner or two
Michael Chiesa (+120)
His fight with Neil Magny could play out several different ways but history tells us that Neil is susceptible to the takedown attempt still and Mike will likely get it.
Chiesa has sneaky strength for 170 and Magny struggles with fighters who are able to control him. I love Neil but the longer you are, the thinner you probably are. He is going to run into some powerhouses that he just can’t match.
Wednesday! Our triple header week is just getting started 🍿
— UFC (@ufc) January 17, 2021
I don’t think Mike is that guy but I do feel that Chiesa is the guy that can beat him. Maverick has over a 50% takedown percentage while Neil has been taken down multiple times in recent fights.
I know Neil has never been better but we can safely say the same for Mike Maverick Chiesa. I like him at (+120). There is no need for any method of victory looks here. We have our plus money and we are good there.
Mounir Lazzez + Conor McGregor + Shane Burgos + Amanda Ribas + Khalil Rountree Jr + Movsar Evloev
— UFC (@ufc) January 17, 2021
Feel free to mix and match these fighters as you like. Most confident, though, in this order: Evloev, Ribas, McGregor, Burgos, Rountree Jr, Lazzez.
Movsar Evloev is one of the best fighters in the UFC’s Featherweight Division and they are bringing the guy along slowly. He is still undefeated and I don’t expect that to change at all when he fights The Carnie Nik Lentz.
You gotta love Nik’s game. He is so tough and ALWAYS comes to fight but I just think he is outmatched here and so do the online sportsbooks. They are giving him 5 to 1 odds so I will have him as my parlay anchor instead.
Amanda Ribas was a national team member of Judo Brazil at one time and she is also a mat brat. What is a mat brat? Well, as you might assume, it is someone who grew up on the mats. Their parents were likely martial arts instructors.
Amanda’s father owned a BJJ and Judo academy and you can see how much it has helped Amanda who will likely be fighting for a world title sometime this year!
Put on a happy face! @AmandaRibasUFC has returned 😆
— UFC (@ufc) January 18, 2021
Conor McGregor was tipped out by us where it opened at (-160). Now we have virtually doubled up and are staring up at a possible (-350) by fight time. I feel good about being ahead of the movement.
It is always nice to beat that line and it will be better than a fresh Guinness when The Notorious Conor McGregor does his thing and gets his hand raised on Saturday night.
Shane Burgos has a bit of a test against Hakeem Dawodo but nothing like he has seen against Calvin Kattar and Josh Emmett. I don’t rate Hakeem up there with those guys. Dawodo is coming off of a win but it was over Zubaira Tukhugov.
Sounds like a nice win, right? His name does end in “Ov” but don’t let that fool you. Zub is a very weak-minded fighter who will pretty much pack it in and not throw anything is he doesn’t feel like it.
So, Hakeem is coming off of a win against a tough counting opponent but we know the truth. He is being overvalued. I was surprised to see Burgos less than a (-200) favorite. I thought he would be up at (-250) so we have some value there.
Khalil Rountree Jr hasn’t fought in about a year so he may be a little rusty but he should have nothing to worry about against Marcin Prachnio who has been finished in all three of his fights inside the Octagon.
Rountree Jr is a knockout artist who has been training nonstop in Thailand for more than two years now. As long as his opponents aren’t way bigger or have a nasty takedown game, they’re in for a war.
Finally, Mounir Lazezz fighting out of Tunisia is a problem. He completely dominated Al Hassan back in July in Abu Dhabi. This was his first fight in the UFC and he was the first fighter born and raised in an Arb country to make it to the UFC. That is pretty special but with it comes pressure. Mounir appears to thrive under said pressure, though, and I like him to put a hurting on Brazil’s Warlley Alves who is on our 5 fighters to fade in 2021.
I don’t know much about Tunisia but I do know that Mounir is a big fighter with confidence to match his size and skills. He believes he is ready right now to challenge for a UFC title and we will see.
He has a tough Brazilian standing in front of him this week. Warlley has never been the same post-USADA, though, so I like Lazezz to more or less have his way with his opponent.
There is a lottery ticket for you. I gave you guys my most confident plays out of the 6-leg (+534) parlay. That isn’t a giant payout at all but it isn’t that bad either. You will have the option to buy out when the main event of UFC 257 comes around but don’t do it!
Conor McGregor has got this!
The season resumes! What version of @TheNotoriousMMA are you expecting on Saturday? 🇮🇪
— UFC (@ufc) January 18, 2021
Check back everyday for more MMA betting content for the UFC.
Should I have written “In Concussion” instead of In Conclusion because I wouldn’t be lying.
All you had to do is just watch for a few minutes and it can become too much for you and if that level of violence doesn’t phase you then you have to do your research, man. MMA fighters have died from a competition.
Now, we are seeing Spencer Fisher coming out with his story. He has been through it all in the UFC and if you remember, he was a Team Miletich guy. I love Pat but he has some blood on his hands, man.
Spencer’s first day, Pat and Jens Pulver had a bet to see who could knock him out first. I know that cage fighters are made into better fighters the more hard sparring rounds that they have. I get that but there is always too much of a good thing.
When you’re going “90%” every sparring round, we all know what that means. It’s a fight and after a while, these guys get a lot better at fighting. It works for sure but at what cost. It is different for everyone.
Remember when Max Holloway was on ESPN slurring his words and everybody got worried? Well, I think something was really up because now he is very vocal and open about not sparring at all for his fight camps.c
"I love just piecing someone up and punching them in the face…but I think I found a new love tonight, I think I found a love of elbowing someone in the head."
-Max Holloway (@BlessedMMA) showed a full arsenal at #UFCFightIsland7#InAbuDhabi | @VisitAbuDhabi pic.twitter.com/0NyBnjFDm9
— UFC News (@UFCNews) January 16, 2021
That is hard to believe but you can simulate quite a bit with focus mitts and Thai pads. If you have ever worked out with a hard Thai trainer, you would wish you were sparring. Then, you could at least hit them back.
When they are holding for you, they can beat you up with kicks and smack you around with the pads. You have to keep going no matter what. Heart is everything in Thailand and that is all they’re looking for.
Max and his team out there in Waianae, Hawaii seem to have it figured out. They know their athlete better than anyone and they had him dare I say perfectly prepared for his main event with Calvin Kattar.
This week, we have so many fights. I am doing my best to stay away from the traps that have been set and just focus on the simplicity of each fight.
Get your bets in now and enjoy the fights on Wednesday and again on Saturday.
PLACE YOUR BETS NOW!