UFC 166 Picks: Velasquez vs. Dos Santos III

The UFC will be back on pay-per-view this Saturday and the UFC 166 fight card has plenty to be excited about. The main event will be for the UFC Heavyweight Championship plus there are numerous other great fights on the card including on the FX prelims.

Cain Velasquez will put his title on the line against Junior Dos Santos in the ME and the action has been fairly evenly split. Roy Nelson and Daniel Cormier fight in the co-main event and that fight should have some fireworks as well with two big strikers.

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UFC 166 Main Event Predictions

  • Cain Velasquez (12-1) –190 vs. Junior Dos Santos (16-2) +175

This will be the third between these two heavyweights. JDS won the first fight by KO just 1:04 into the fight. He caught Velasquez off guard in that fight, but in the second fight Velasquez was much more prepared and he dominated every round to win by decision.

Both guys have great power and you can expect both fighters to be cautious in the opening round. Velasquez will be weary of being knocked out, but once he settles in I expect him to dominate the fight with his wrestling (6.49 Takedown Attempts / 15 Minutes).

Velasquez also has great tempo in the cage and in five round fights that’s difficult to deal with and I don’t think JDS will hold up to the fast pace. Cain will score enough on the judges’ scorecards to win by decision, as I don’t think he’ll be able to TKO/KO JDS.

UFC 166 Main Card Predictions

  • Daniel Cormier (12-0) –480 vs. Roy Nelson (19-8) +420

Daniel Cormier still hasn’t lost in his career, but fighting Big Country is always a test because of his power. Nelson isn’t one to ever give up. He has been knocked out once back in 2008 before his UFC days. In the UFC he is 6-4 and his losses have been by decision.

Cormier knows what to expect in this fight and for that reason I think the best bet is on Cormier by decision at –140 odds. He isn’t likely to win by stoppage against Nelson, but Cormier is more accurate/active plus he also absorbs 1.39 striker per minute.

  • Gilbert Melendez (21-3) –600 vs. Diego Sanchez (24-5) +500

Gilbert Melendez hasn’t been in the cage since losing to Benson Henderson in April. Diego Sanchez was last in the cage in March and he beat Takanori Gomi. There is no denying that Melendez is the better fighter, but is he worth risking so much on to win?

I personally don’t think so and I’ll be avoiding this fight on the main card. Sanchez is a tough fighter that in my opinion could pull off the upset if he has a great fight and game plan. If you want to bet on this fight I’d bet that the fight goes the distance (-210 Odds).

  • Shawn Jordan (15-4) –190 vs. Gabriel Gonzaga (15-7) +165

Gabriel Gonzaga opened up at –105 for this fight against Shawn Jordan, but he is now up to +165 due to heavy action on Jordan. I’m not sold on Jordan. He is 3-1 since joining the UFC with a loss to Kongo, but his wins haven’t been against that tough of competition.

Gonzaga has been knocked out six times in his career and that’s why most bettors will be betting against him, but Jordan has been knocked out twice as well and Gonzaga has power in his strikes. Gonzaga also has the ability to land takedowns. I’m on the dog.

  • John Dodson (14-6) –340 vs. Darrell Montague (13-2) +310

John Dodson lost a tough 5-round decision against Demetrious Johnson in his last fight, but he should have no problem getting back into the win column against Darrell Montague who is making his UFC debut after moving up through the amateur circuit.

I have to admit I don’t know too much about Montague, but I’ve seen a few videos of his fights. The 25-year old is going to have his hands full in his debut against Dodson who is in his prime and looking to get another title shot in the near future. I like Dodson SU.