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UFC 130 Betting Preview

Bet the UFC at Bodog


5/28/11


Some mixed martial arts fans are no doubt still a bit disappointed that the main event for Saturday’s UFC 130 in Las Vegas between lightweight champion Frankie Edgar and unbeaten challenger Gray Maynard was called off earlier this month due to both fighters dealing with injuries. Edgar was dealing with back and rib injuries while Maynard had a knee problem.

Of course Edgar and Maynard have fought twice previously, with Maynard getting a win at UFC Fight Night 13 and then both fighters being disappointed with a draw decision at UFC 125. The book was seeing good early action on this bout so we are disappointed as well, although the two should meet now in the fall assuming all rehab goes well.

So, the Memorial Day weekend card – always a big one in UFC -- lost a bit of luster, but we are still expecting solid action overall on UFC 130 card with it being a holiday weekend in the United States.  UFC scheduled this wisely, it appears, because there are no big boxing bouts to deflect any attention as there would have been last weekend with Jean Pascal-Bernard Hopkins. Depending on the NBA and NHL playoffs, UFC could be the only big thing going this weekend on the sporting scene other than the Indianapolis 500 and NASCAR’s Coca-Cola 600. So we could see a boost in action because of that.

The headline bout Saturday is now former light heavyweight champion Quinton “Rampage” Jackson against Matt Hamill. And the heavyweight fight between former titleholder Frank Mir against “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 10 winner Roy Nelson will now serve as the co-main event. Additionally, a welterweight fight between Thiago Alves and Rick Story has been promoted to the main card.

Hamill may have made the mistake of motivating Rampage when Hamill said recently that he believed he could break Jackson’s will once they step into the Octagon. Originally Jackson said he wasn’t all that excited to face Hamill (Rampage was originally schedule to fight Thiago Silva at UFC 130). That no longer seems to be the case.

“I think Matt made a mistake when he actually said he's going to break my will, and that I'm going to overlook him," Jackson said. “That kind of lit a fire under my ass and actually made me train harder to make sure I don't overlook him and to make sure I outclass him."

“The Hammer” Hamill (10-2-0) is no slouch as he has a five-fight winning streak that includes awards for Knockout of the Night and Fight of the Night. His last two bouts, against Tito Ortiz and Keith Jardine, went to a decision. A win here could vault Hamill up the ladder in terms of prestige as he’s ranked only around 15th in his light-heavyweight division right now. Jackson (31-8-0), who is the No. 4 lightweight, enters off a split decision win over Lyoto Machida at UFC 123.

Early action at Bodog is definitely favoring Rampage. He opened as the -250 favorite but has taken more than 67 percent of the action and has moved his line to -275. Hamill opened at +195 but now is up to +215. Jackson is 1-2 as a betting favorite at Bodog, while Hamill is 1-2 as an underdog, but that win came thanks to a DQ by Jon Jones in “The Ultimate Fighter 10.”

Meanwhile, Mir (14-5-0), the two-time UFC heavyweight champion, enters off a third-round knockout of Mirko Filipovic at UFC 119, but that fight was mostly a dud and drew the ire of UFC boss Dana White. He faces “Big Country” Nelson (15-5-0), who knocked out Brendan Schaub in the “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 10 finale and is a former champion of the International Fight League. Nelson comes off a loss to No. 1 contender Junior dos Santos at UFC 117 in August and has dropped three of his past five fights overall.

Bodog opened the Mir-Nelson bout as a pick’em at -115 each. But about 60 percent of the action thus far has been on Mir, moving him to -145 and Nelson to +110. Mir is 3-1 in his career as a betting favorite at Bodog while Nelson is 0-2.

So far the most lopsided action we are seeing among the main events is on Brian Stann against Jorge Santiago. Stann opened at -120 but is taking a whopping 87 percent of the action to move his line to -145. Santiago, in his UFC debut, has moved from -110 to +115.

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