UFC on ESPN 11 Betting Picks: Bobby Green vs Clay Guida

Clay Guida. What can I say? He’s a very special fighter.

Once upon a time, I really hated Clay’s style of: take his opponent down and proceed to swing his giant hair every time he touched his opponent to the body.

This was, of course, before I started handicapping fights or betting them because the betting Mike would have absolutely adored the Chicago native.

The Carpenter’s first fight in the UFC was way back in October of 2006. He tapped out Justin James with a rear-naked choke in the second round.

Since then, it has been a heck of a ride for Clay, who has always remained 100% professional for the entirety of his UFC career.

Guida is now 15-13 in his UFC career. He was never quite world champion material but he fought 7 UFC title holders over the years. He’s my age, though. 38.

Not a good number for a fighter. The bigger guys don’t have to react as fast to punches and quickness offensively is less important than it is at 145 or 155. He’s going to need that reaction time and speed against a guy like Bobby Green.

The San Bernardino native wrestled some in high school placing in state tournaments but had a son early and naturally chose the workforce over college and a sport that would simply take up too much of a father’s time.

It wasn’t long, though, before Bobby Ray started training in mixed martial arts. Before he knew it, he was off to a 15-2 fight record and a shot to fight for the Strikeforce banner.

I miss those fights. The matchmaking was tremendous. Strikeforce was a solid organization. I always liked their shows more than Bellator or even the WEC.

Green lost his first fight with the company, a split decision to an OG of the game, Gesias Cavalcante. He then won his next 5 fights including his first 3 with the UFC.

Naturally, the competition got stiffer and Green lost to Barboza and Poirier then dropped a split decision to Rashid Magomedov and had a draw with Lando Vannata.

Next, he beat Erik Koch and had two controversial losses to powerhouses Drakkar Klose and Francisco Trinaldo. Yes, it appears Bobby is on the decline as well but the tape might speak otherwise.

BetOnline.AG has the betting odds for this fight. Let’s take a look at those and make our UFC betting predictions for the fight between Bobby Green and Clay Guida.

Bobby Green (-225) vs Clay Guida (+190)

Round Total

OVER 2.5

With nearly 40 combined fights inside the Octagon, these two strangely have the exact same average fight time of 12:26. Coincidence?

I think so, but that number is 4 seconds off of exactly 2.5 rounds. So, should we take the over or the under? What does the omen say?

The omen says Clay has a great chin and will probably hold up to the punches of Green and Guida has only been stopped twice by strikes in his lengthy UFC career.

I’m not focused on the round total here. I think it’s going over but (-175) is a premium I don’t want to pay. Did the betting lines for the matchup open this wide or has money been coming in on Green?

The way the betting lines have been getting beat to death lately by sharp bettors who would normally be betting baseball right now makes me think that Green was a smaller favorite a couple of weeks ago.

That isn’t true. The money is actually coming in on Clay. They see Bobby’s recent losses but MMA math makes about as much sense as some common core complications.

Green is a better striker and has above average takedown defense. At Guida’s best, he had above average takedowns.

The explosivity he once carried with him into the Octagon has declined while Bobby Green, who is just 33, has held onto his speed up to this point. This is pretty cut and dry.

Green is the better striker with a 3-inch height advantage. He lands 5 significant strikes per minute which is pretty solid, especially when it doubles the 2.4 Clay is hitting on.

Guida has always had solid defense, though, only allowing fighters to hit him with solid shots less than 3 times per minute over nearly 30 fights.

  • Guida’s takedown offense: 38%
  • Green’s takedown defense: 74%

That’s a big difference.

I see Green establishing his jab early and often while Clay bounces around the edge of the cage. That’s another thing. I believe Green will take the center of the Octagon. If he does that, it’s going to be VERY hard for Clay to pull off the victory.

Bobby’s betting odds tell me he has an implied probability of nearly 70%. To make at least a 1 unit or 1% of your bankroll bet, we need to give Green at least a 75% chance to win.

These two fight 4 times and he wins 3? I believe so. I would go as far as to say that Bobby Green wins 4 out of 5 times. Let’s throw 2 units on Bobby Ray to get the W.

My Pick

In Conclusion

This fight is one of my more confident picks. It did kinda bug me that money came in on Clay Guida but it wasn’t a lot.

I think people just saw him as nearly a 2.5 to 1 underdog against someone who has 1 win in 6 years. When you put it that way… It’s a cool stat but a draw with Lando Vannata in a striking battle is a feather in the cap.

He is 1-5-1 in his last seven fights. That’s bad, yes, but 4 of those losses were very close decisions. Give him two of those and he’s a .500 fighter over the past half a decade.

I can see the case for Clay Guida on paper but the way these two match up in the cage tells me that Bobby is going to box and maybe even wrestle his way to a comfortable victory.

He is a potential parlay piece as well if you want to pair him with Curtis Blaydes.

Get your bets in now, guys, and enjoy the fights on Saturday. The prelims get going early at 5:00 PM Eastern time so don’t miss them!

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.