UFC 250 Betting Pick: Herbert Burns vs Evan Dunham

UFC 250 is this Saturday night from the home of the UFC, Las Vegas, Nevada.

I know we were kinda spoiled with UFC 249 but don’t sleep on this event!

The main event of Amanda Nunes vs Felicia Spencer is not getting much hype, primarily due to the fact that the Brazilian champion is now a 6 to 1 favorite.

I have already put Amanda in a couple of parlays. I think we got her at (-400) which I thought was bad at the time but things are a’ changin’ pretty quickly in the world nowadays. I am actually thinking that Felicia Spencer could be a live dog in this situation.

We aren’t picking that one right now so I won’t go too deep on it but Spencer is a natural 145er with an iron chin, heart, great top control, and submission skills, good takedowns, and solid conditioning.

Amanda did not look good in her last fight against Germain de Randamie. She was fighting a world class striker, though, so I didn’t expect her to look amazing in the kickboxing realm.

Nunes looked bad in the clinch and very tired by the third round. If she didn’t have such a massive advantage in the takedown and ground game, she could have been in trouble in that fight. Champions can get bored too.

Remember Anderson Silva when he fought Chris Weidman? After winning your first 16 UFC fights and finishing 14 of those opponents, I suppose complacency isn’t a matter of if but when.

I think Amanda will keep Felicia on the end of her punches and eventually hurt her, drop her, and finish with punches. She may not, though. Anyways, we will get back to that one.

Right now, let’s talk Gil-I mean Herbert Burns.

The MMA world is still talking about Herbert’s performance of a lifetime against Tyron Woodley this past weekend.

Herbert is no Antonina Shevchenko, though. He is a complete mixed martial arts fighter. Sorry, Nina is on my bad list after she got taken down and controlled for 15 minutes on Saturday.

Katlyn was my pick originally. Then I thought, Shev will have the advantage in the clinch. Chookagian has never attempted a takedown before and then boom! Rough night betting for us, I know.

I absolutely love some of this week’s betting lines, though, and I know we can make our money back and then some, betting on UFC 250 this Saturday.

Herbert Burns is looking to continue his rise with the company while Evan Dunham is coming out of retirement to take this fight which is short notice for both combatants.

BetOnline.AG has the betting odds for us. Let’s get into those and make our UFC betting predictions for this one.

Herbert Burns (-200) vs Evan Dunham (+170)

Fight Goes to a Decision

YES
+130
NO
-170

Why is Evan Dunham back fighting in the UFC? He is my age, 38, ugh. It’s been nearly two years since Evan has fought.

He had an amazing career. Dunham is a very-well rounded fighter almost to a fault and has also been the consummate professional throughout his time with the UFC.

Evan began wrestling in middle school and while he didn’t continue the sport when he attended the University of Oregon, he did begin to dabble with Brazilian Jiu Jitsu.

Dunham made his professional mixed martial arts debut in April of 2007. After winning his first 7 fights for 7 different promotions, he got his shot in the UFC. UFC 95 to be exact.

He defeated Per Eklund by knockout in the first round. He went on to win his next three fights with the organization including a split decision win over Tyson Griffin.

Eventually, he would lose three fights in a row when the competition was raised to a certain level. Cowboy Cerrone, Rafael Dos Anjos, and Edson Barboza all beat him in succession.

The UFC has love for Evan, though, and instead of throwing him to more wolves, they gave him some fighters he could beat. He rattled off four straight victories followed by a draw to top ten mainstay in the lightweight division, Beneil Dariush.

In 2018, though, he lost two straight fights to Francisco Trinaldo and Olivier Aubin Mercier both from knees to the body. Neither of those two guys are known to be finishers.

In fact, that was the one and only TKO win in the career of the Canadian, Mercier.

It’s not a good look for Evan. Usually, when fighters start to age, their chins can do the same. Usually, you stay fairly strong to the body unless there is an underlying issue.

Here’s What I Know

Evan trained alongside us at Syndicate MMA some and he did a lot of work with our head striking coach Chaz Mulkey. He worked with him while he was on his last win streak in 2015. He landed 152 significant strikes against Rodrigo Damm.

Dunham is very solid technically everywhere the fight goes. No one skill is very threatening, though.

He’s not great at anything and sometimes that helps but at the highest level, you will always run into someone who does one or more of those skills better than you.

A great wrestler doesn’t need a great chin, threatening submissions, or power/speed in their strikes. Great wrestling will get the fight to the floor and from there he just needs control and submission defense.

You can check 4 out of 5 boxes for your fighter but one box CAN trump the rest.

Why is Evan Dunham back, though? Well, I have a lot of close friends who train at his Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu academy in Las Vegas.

What do we know about martial arts schools right now? Unfortunately, many are going out of business with the country shut down. One of the SoCal 10th Planet Jiu-Jitsu schools was destroyed by vandals a couple of days ago.

It appears that Evan could be in need of some cash and what better way to earn some quick money than get in a fight?

How does he match up with Herbert Burns, though? Not great.

Burns is still in his prime at 32 years old. He is a natural 145-pound fighter while Evan has fought at lightweight or 155 for his entire career.

Dunham isn’t a huge guy, though. He will be one or two inches taller but it is Herbert burns who owns a 3-inch reach advantage. He is very long and opponents should think twice before trying to take him down as his attacks off his back will come early and often.

Evan is a solid Jiu-Jitsu player himself but I think his best chance to win is to stand and strike with Burns.

The younger man will just be too powerful and explosive in this fight. Herbert is 32 but he doesn’t have the mileage on his body that we see from a lot of other fighters his age.

He has stopped fighters with one knee before and that’s how we have seen Evan be put away for two fights in a row. Burns’s 1-2 is straight down the pipe. I think he will hurt the Oregonian with one of those and quickly follow up for the win.

The only fighters who have been able to give Herbert trouble were a couple of Russians who were both very explosive, great wrestlers, and had the submission defense and strength to avoid having to tap out after taking the Brazilian down.

This is a catchweight fight at 150. That will help Burns even more. If Evan was the type to use his size to win, then maybe I would give him an advantage there but he’s not.

Herbert will have his speed advantage possibly turn into a power advantage also as he isn’t going to have to cut those final 5 pounds that would normally zap him.

I don’t know when or how but the (-200) we are getting on him to win still has solid value. Maybe we can throw him in a parlay later in the week.

I’m definitely going with Herbert Burns here to likely get the stoppage.

My Pick
HERBERT BURNS

In Conclusion

Can Herbert make it 2 wins in 2 weeks for the Burns family? Gilbert shocked many of us with his wire-to-wire win over former welterweight world champion, Tyron Woodley. There weren’t many sharp bettors on Burns for that fight.

I don’t consider myself a sharp bettor but I did like Burns at first. After listening to expert after expert, though, saying why this is such a good bet on paper for Woodley, I began to play into that narrative.

All of the casual fans I talked to said BURNS BURNS BURNS!

It appeared that the Burns bet would be a sucker bet but by fight time, in my head, I was convinced Gilbert was going to pull it off.

Sometimes, I think that 5 minds are better than one when breaking down a fight but that isn’t always the case. I have let too many people talk me out of a pick.

If I know the fighters already, then I will go with my first instinct more often than not. My first instinct here was Herbert all the way. I think Even beats him 3 out of 10 times and that’s just not enough to warrant a bet for the underdog.

A 75% chance to win for the favorite, though, is plenty when he is sitting at (-200) which denotes a 66% implied probability to win.

Get your bets in now, guys, as I expect this line to continue to move in the direction of Herbert Burns.

Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.