UFC Fight Night Betting Pick: Louis Smolka vs Jose Quinonez

Welcome back, guys, to another week of UFC betting action. It has been one heck of a year as we all are far too familiar but if there is one positive that came out of 2020, that is the major boost in popularity of the UFC around the world.

I tell you what, Dana White should be Time Magazine’s Man of the Year. I’ve never been the biggest fan of the cue ball that just keeps growing but I have always loved him for what he did for the sport when nobody else would.

That was decades ago and in 2020, he did it again. I’m not sure how many weeks of sleep he lost trying to get the UFC back up and running during our country’s COVID-19 lockdown but dog’on it, he did it!

I know we have had fighters pop positive for COVID and we have even lost a main event to this like we did last week with Curtis Blaydes having to withdraw from his fight with Derrick The Black Beast Lewis.

Honestly, I don’t think we missed much, and be honest-you all know you were going to watch Roy Jones Jr and Mike Tyson over that fight anyway.

Some spectacle that was. Props to both men for stepping in there and especially Mike Tyson, the older man, for bringing the fight. Roy was there for a paycheck and to not get knocked out. He robbed the fans of a lot of excitement but it is what it is.

And another thing. I grew up on the Doggfather, okay, but his commentary was the most nails on a chalkboard for lack of better words-horse malarky that I’ve ever heard. Give me Pauli Malignaggi with his trusty 8-ball any day over the D-O-Double-G.

I switched over to the Russian stream after about 90 seconds of “Ohhh, ooohh, hit eeeem Roy, get up outta der! These two look like my uncles fighting at a cookout!” No, Snoop. These are two of the greatest combat athletes of all-time putting on a show for us post-50 years old. And you sound like somebody’s drunk uncle.

Since Snoop will obviously read this, send me a personal apology, and correct his behavior, I suppose I have said enough.

We have 3 more UFC fight cards before a 3-week Christmas and New Year’s break. It has been a grind. Despite being shut down completely for 2 months, the UFC will be putting on their 39th event of the year this week.

That’s after getting started on January 18th when Conor McGregor smoked Cowboy Cerrone like Snoop Doog smoked, well, everything.

That’s 41 events in about 41 weeks! They put on 42 in 2019 and that was, of course, back in the olden days.

Please Note:

The fight between Louis Smolka and Jose Quinonez has already been cancelled once but both fighters knew they would be getting back in there soon so I imagine they stayed in shape. The two UFC Featherweights were supposed to scrap 3 weeks ago but here we are and the betting odds are roughly the same.

Louis is a slight betting favorite here at (-130) according to BetOnline. Let’s get to our breakdown of this fight along with the betting odds and find our most valuable play possible.

Louis Smolka (-130) vs Jose Quinonez (+100)

I think they are trying to tempt us here with the even money on Jose Quinonez but I don’t think I am taking the bait.

Both men have lost 2 out of their last 3 fights albeit to superior competition. Louis was choked by Matt Schnell and most recently by Casey Kenney. Jose was choked by Nathaniel Wood and knocked out early in his most recent fight by ole chicken foot, Sean O’Malley.

I really liked what I saw from Louis Smolka in his last fight against Casey Kenney even though he was finished. Kenney is on an absolute tear and is a complete fighter who can win anywhere.

The Last Samurai, Smolka came out absolutely ripping shots to the body of Kenney and I really think they were going to pay dividends if Louis could have taken the fight to the later rounds.

How is this week’s fight going to play out?

I believe Louis will have a striking advantage and the two men match up pretty well on the mat. Will it get there considering neither fighter has a high level wrestling base?

We could very well see Louis outbox Jose on his way to a unanimous decision victory. He will probably have to do just that, though, because Jose is as tough as they come.

I would price Louis closer to (-200) in this fight so I think the (-130) we are getting right now is pretty good.

Let’s make a play on that. I don’t want to mess around and get greedy with a method of victory prop because this one could play out several different ways.

My Pick
Louis Smolka

In Conclusion

These two men are going to scrap! I really do not see this being a boring fight at all! Even if the two men are fighting on the mat, they both have excellent submission skills and they go for it!

Each guy is a kill or be killed type of fighter and while these types of guys may not be the best for betting, I think with their similar styles, you have a strong play on the more skillful mixed martial artist.

I expect a good fight but I think Louis takes this around 6 out of 10 times and they betting odds are telling us he is about 56%.

Important:

Normally, I like at least a 5% edge on the sportsbooks but since the two fighters are so similarly styled, to me it’s a stronger play. Louis Smolka will invest in the body early and often and that is a great strategy against a very durable Mexican fighter.

Smolka probably isn’t going to try to kick his head off like Salty Sean did so the punches to the dome will probably score but not hurt Jose.

I like his bodywork and Smolka is a bit underrated if you ask me. He has been in there with Tim Elliott, Ray Borg, and Brandon Moreno. Those were 3 consecutive fights he lost in his first run with the company back in ’16-’17.

He is always fighting tough guys who are above his level and he never looks great but fighting against someone on or slightly below his level, should give Louis the confidence and edge he needs to get back in the win column.

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.