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Betting On UFC 144 – Jackson Redeems Himself In Japan

Posted by Jack “The Hammer” Howard on 2/14/2012 2:59:00 PM
betting on ufc 144

Online betting players who have followed the MMA game for a while now will surely remember Pride, and they’ll remember the many vicious fights that were brought to them by Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, who returns there for UFC 144 to face Ryan Bader. Jackson will be riled up by the crowd, and that should give him the push he needs to send Bader to defeat.

What: UFC 144 Betting
When: Saturday, February 25th, 8:00 PM ET
Where: Saitama Super Arena, Saitama, Japan
Pick: Quinton “Rampage” Jackson

Why Bet On Quinton “Rampage” Jackson (32-9)

Jackson asked to fight in Japan, where he made his name in Pride, and he wanted to avenge a brutal TKO at the hands (actually, it was the feet due to soccer kicks, which were legal in Pride) of Mauricio “Shogun” Rua in April 2005. He is coming off a loss to champion Jon Jones in September in which he was completely overwhelmed by Jones’ reach, and he spent most of the match looking for that one knockout punch. Eventually, Jones wore down Jackson and submitted him with a rear-naked choke 1:14 into the fourth round, and it looks like the days of Jackson being a title contender are over. He appeared to be fatigued by the end of the fight, and he had no Plan B for Jones’ combination of unorthodox Muay Thai striking and wrestling; however, he shouldn’t be ashamed as no one has been able to slow down the champ yet.

At his best, Jackson is a strong boxer who possesses incredible knockout power, and even though he may not be the most technical fighter in the world, his brute strength is a great attribute. He has stuffed 82% of his opponent’s takedown attempts, and even Jones had a tough time taking Jackson to the mat, especially early in the fight. “Rampage” has gone away from his wrestling background in recent fights and has turned into a one-punch stalker, and he needs to be a bit more well-rounded if he is going to make one more run at the 205-pound title, which he won from Chuck Liddell in May 2007, then unified with the Pride belt against Dan Henderson in September, and then lost to Forrest Griffin in the 2008 “Fight of the Year”.

Why Bet On Ryan Bader (13-2)

Bader fell down the ranks among MMA betting players with a pair of losses to Jones and a shocking upset to Tito Ortiz in July, but he looked reinvigorated in a first-round KO win over Jason Brilz in November. Bader needed that win badly to get some momentum back as he was a highly-regarded prospect before he ran into Jones and the two-time All-American wrestler was manhandled by the future champion on the mat. The loss to Ortiz shocked the UFC world as Bader was submitted by the former champion and many wonder if he could bounce back from a loss in which he was such a massive favorite. While Brilz isn’t a top-10 fighter by any means, Bader took care of business and wasted minimal energy in dispatching of his opponent and you can see that the potential is there for “Vader” to rise again in a loaded 205-pound division.

The key to Bader’s entire plan is his wrestling, and while he has improved his striking somewhat, it won’t be enough to get past Jackson. Bader is relentless with his takedown attempts and that will be important as he looks to wear down his opponent. And while he isn’t the most technical striker in the world, Bader does have a heavy set of hands that can end a fight in a hurry (just ask Brilz). He could stand to work on his jiu-jitsu in this match so he could go for submissions if he manages to get Jackson to the mat, but Bader’s main plan will be to wrestle, control and neutralize the strength of “Rampage”.

How It Will Play Out

“Rampage” is a -240 favorite in Japan and he’ll have the crowd on his side from his time there, so it will almost be like a home game for Jackson. Bader has to have extreme focus in this match because he is going to get a motivated “Rampage” and that often spells trouble for the opposition. Can Bader wrestle Jackson to the ground and wear down on the former champion?

It’s going to be tough because Jackson is one of the best takedown defenders in the world and Bader, who comes in at +210, wants no parts of staying on the feet with “Rampage”, who probably has an edge in technique (which tells you how far Bader has to go) and potentially an edge in power, and if he connects, it is lights out. We’re leaning towards the favorite, Quinton “Rampage” Jackson, in our sports betting picks.

UFC 144 Betting Pick: Quinton “Rampage” Jackson

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