While it will not be the biggest combat sports event of this summer, UFC 214 is certainly the biggest MMA event of the entire year. In addition to this Jon Jones-Daniel Cormier rematch, the card features two additional name charms, contenders and enjoyable battles throughout.
Brad Taschuk of all MMAOddsBreaker.com, takes a look at where the gambling odds have proceeded for all 12 fights since opening lines (indicated in brackets) were released and he gives his thoughts on each matchup. All traces are courtesy of 5Dimes Sportsbook.
Jon Jones (-280) vs. Daniel Cormier (+220)
Jones was a -170 favored the first time these two fought and some naively anticipated the lineup could be similar this time around. But, it seems that Jones’ legal issues, run-in with USADA and layoff has not had the impact anticipated online. It is difficult to attribute bettors either, Cormier is currently 38-years-old, has been through some hard battles since their very first meeting, and Jones won every component of that first fight. Expect something similar – if not dominant – that time around.
Irrespective of how seriously he takes his groundwork, Jones is the type of fighter that rises to the occasion like others. He, this is the greatest occasion. Cormier is his main rival and he’s the opportunity to regain the belt he never lost against him. That combination will lead to a huge performance from Jones. Expect him to dispatch Cormier and re-assert his dominance at the branch.
Tyron Woodley (-210) vs. Demian Maia (+160)
Much like the main event, this line hasn’t seen much movement. Given that the contrasting styles, that is not hard to trust. There’s a contingent of individuals who think that Woodley is going to starch Maia using the first punch he yells. They might well be correct. The other side of this coin is made up of those who believe that Maia can close the space, latch onto Woodley such as he has so many others and just dominate with his grappling. They could be right too. Woodley’s inclination to back himself against the cage and play counter-puncher is going to be his demise here. Maia is becoming so good at entering the clinch if not under stress he ought to have the ability to make Woodley miss after. Even against a high-level wrestler the likes of Woodley, once Maia gets his hands on you, that is a world of trouble.
The Brazilian’s capacity to commence Jiu-Jitsu imports without hitting conventional takedowns is second to none (he’s perfected the single leg to back take) and Woodley being the kind of guy who likes to burst out of positions will only hurt him after that occurs. It’s sort of astonishing that Maia by Sub pays an excess dollar (+275 as of Thursday morning), since Woodley will not be able to endure 25 moments of Maia engaging in the type of fight he wishes to. The other option is probably a quick Woodley KO (+350 for your champ at Round 1, by the way).
Cristiane “Cyborg” Justino (-1200) vs. Tonya Evinger (+600)
This fight being bettable depends on which kind of bettor you’re. If you have no issue throwing a massive lineup in a parlay, the Cyborg moneyline (at nearly -1400), or Cyborg ITD (almost -700) are almost sure things. If that is not really your style, neither will probably be laying nearly 2-to-1 on a prop like Cyborg Round 1.
The only case I could make for a play is based on Evinger’s resilience. She has taken damage in many of her struggles and persevered and she likely won’t come back to conquer Cyborg in this one after a tough start, there is an external shot she is able to endure five minutes. However, even the prices for”Fight Begins Round 2″ and Cyborg Round 2 have dropped substantially (down to +150 and +450, respectively), making them less appealing even to someone who is constantly on the hunt for some round robin legs.
Robbie Lawler (-175) vs. Donald Cerrone (+135)
It’s a shame this struggle is taking place after both guys have apparently passed their peak concerning durability, because a war with Lawler and Cerrone at their best are a thing to behold. This fight will come down to space management and in-fight choices. Lawler wants to be inside, Cerrone wants to be outdoors. The problem for Cerrone is that Lawler’s consistent pressure will gradually see him get indoors and at that point, anticipate Cerrone to be much too ready to oblige him the warfare he’s looking for. While that will give us the kind of struggle we want to view, don’t expect it to end well for Cerrone.
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