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UFC 181 Picks: Hendricks vs. Lawler II

The UFC is back on pay-per-view tomorrow night in Las Vegas and the card is absolutely stacked. The main event and co-main event will feature two title fights. The prelims are strong as well and will be headlined by Urijah Faber in the final fight on Fox Sports 1.

Hendricks will fight Lawler in the main event while Pettis will fight Melendez in the co-main event. This is a stacked card and a great way to end 2014. The next PPV event won’t be until early January, so have a great Christmas and good luck with your bets.

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UFC 181 Welterweight Championship Picks

  • Johny Hendricks (16-2) –200 vs. Robbie Lawler (24-10-0-1) +180

Robbie Lawler has been a busy fighter lately. He lost to Johny Hendricks in March, but has since bounced back with two wins against Ellenberger and Brown. Hendricks outworked Lawler in the first fight, as he out struck his opponent and landed two big takedowns.

With 19 TKO/KO wins, there is always hope that Lawler ends the fight early, but Hendricks has never been stopped in the cage. The difference in this one is Hendricks wrestling and Lawler’s average TD defense. Bet on O4.5 rounds (-105) and Hendricks ML.

UFC 181 Lightweight Championship Picks

  • Anthony Pettis (17-2) –260 vs. Gilbert Melendez (22-3) +240

This is the toughest fight on the card in my opinion and I still could make a case for both fighters. Anthony Pettis has had some issues with injuries, but he’s in the cage he has been unstoppable. He has won four in a row and his last three wins have been in R1.

Pettis last lost in 2011 against Guida and Gilbert Melendez may cause Pettis some problems with his wrestling. Both fighters defend well and this fight will likely go the distance. I like Pettis to win, but not at these odds, so I’ll be on O4.5 rounds (-155).

UFC 181 Main Card Predictions

  • Travis Browne (16-2-1) –330 vs. Brendan Schaub (10-4) +300

In this fight I see it going one of two ways. I believe Travis Browne utilizes his power in the octagon to knockout Brendan Schaub. You can bet on Browne TKO/KO at –171 odds. Schaub has been knocked out three times and is still known to have a weak chin.

The other way that I could see this fight play out is Schaub will be able to smoother Browne and take hold him on the mat. Schaub is an ugly winner, but he can get the job done, as was evident by his 2-0 record in 2013. Browne keeps this standing and wins by TKO.

  • Todd Duffee (8-2) –330 vs. Anthony Hamilton (13-3) +300

Todd Duffee has won all of his fights by knockout, but he hasn’t been in the cage since December 2012. That’s a long time ago and no one knows how he’ll perform. We know he has been training hard for months for this fight, but can he handle the pressure?

His opponent, Anthony Hamilton, is 1-1 in the UFC. He beat Potts, but lost to Oleinik. Duffee has to keep this fight standing up, but if he can do that he’ll have no problem winning. Hamilton has only been KO’ed once, but I’ll be on Duffee by TKO/KO (-160).

  • Tony Ferguson (16-3) –260 vs. Abel Trujillo (12-5-0-1) +220

I like Trujillo and think he’s a good fighter, but I can’t bet on him this weekend. Trujillo has won two in a row by knockout, but he has to fight Ferguson who is just the better fighter. Ferguson has power, but he also has a strong ground and submission game as well.

Trujillo likes to attempt a lot of TD’s, but he’s not accurate and Ferguson has great TD defense. I expect Ferguson to utilize his TD defense to keep this fight standing where he’ll use his 6’’ reach advantage to pick apart Trujillo on way to a decision win.