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UFC 146 Betting Picks – Dos Santos Retains Title, Adds Mir To KO List

Posted by Jack “The Hammer” Howard on 4/25/2012 4:46:34 PM

Sports betting sharps were preparing for an epic striking matchup between champion Junior Dos Santos and Alistair Overeem, headlining UFC 146’s main card featuring all-heavyweight matchups. However, Overeem ran into some legal problems and it was to the benefit of Frank Mir, who is looking to hold the UFC title for a third time. But unless he can get Dos Santos to the ground, which barely no one has been able to do, it’s not going to end well for the challenger.

What: UFC Betting
When: Saturday, May 26th, 9:00 PM ET (confirm start time of PPV event)
Where: MGM Grand, Las Vegas, NV
Pick: Junior Dos Santos

Why Bet On Junior Dos Santos (14-1)

Dos Santos is defending his title for the first time since he snatched it from Cain Velasquez in 64 seconds in November on the UFC’s first FOX card, and he has ended 11 of his 14 wins within the first round. Then Dos Santos went on the shelf with a torn meniscus, so he has to be a little worried about ring rust, which ironically was a problem with Velasquez. However, it has only been just over seven months between fights for Dos Santos, one of the best boxers in the UFC and possibly the best in the heavyweight division. His power has netted him three “Knockout of the Night” honors, but “Cigano” also has some of the best takedown defense out there as he has stuffed 85% of attempted takedowns. It would have been interesting to see what he could do against Velasquez, a wrestling specialist who never had a chance to attempt a takedown before he was stopped.

Dos Santos was, of course, training for Overeem, who is a specialist in striking, both Muay Thai and kickboxing, and his new opponent presents a different set of problems for the champion, who is a brown belt in jiu-jitsu, but he hasn’t won via a submission maneuver since December 2006 in his second fight and while his win over Mirko “Cro Cop” Filipovic was classified a submission, Filipovic submitted due to punches. We haven’t seen much of Dos Santos’ mat work because of his excellent takedown defense, and that’s going to be tested in Las Vegas.

Why Bet On Frank Mir (16-5)

Mir was due to fight Velasquez on this card, but he was bumped up to the main event after Overeem’s troubles and now he has a chance to win the heavyweight title for the third time. He defeated Tim Sylvia back in June 2004, and then had to vacate the title because of a motorcycle that almost took his life. Mir then beat Antonio Rodrigo Nogueira for the interim title December 2008 before losing a unification match against Brock Lesnar in July 2009 after submitted Lesnar in his debut 16 months earlier. Mir could be the best submission artist in the heavyweight division as nine of his victories have come that way, and no one will forget his gruesome arm-breaking kimura against Nogueira in their rematch December. It was also the second time in his career that Mir has been given the “Submission of the Year” award. Mir also has the most heavyweight wins in the history of the UFC with 14, so he knows what it takes to come out on top in the octagon.

But like Dos Santos, Mir was training for a different opponent in Velasquez, who isn’t nearly the striker that Dos Santos is (which we saw in November). Mir has only stopped 50% of takedowns, but his jiu-jitsu is so good that he doesn’t mind getting taken down. However, all five of his losses have come by knockout and that isn’t a good sign against the top knockout artist in the division. While Mir has improved his striking by leaps and bounds, it still isn’t close to Dos Santos and he’ll have to figure out a way to penetrate Dos Santos’ takedown defense to force this fight to the ground; it’s the only way Mir has a chance to win.

How It Will Play Out

Currently, you can find Dos Santos as a UFC betting favorite in this fight at anywhere from -500 to -550, while Mir’s lines range from +300 to +422. This may seem like a lot, but Dos Santos has rolled through the heavyweight division and no one has had anything for his combination of power and takedown defense.

Unless Mir can get Dos Santos to the mat, this fight is going to be over quickly as Mir doesn’t have the best chin in the world, while Dos Santos is a knockout king. Ring rust could be a small issue with Dos Santos, but not enough to give Mir an edge. Stick with the champ, Junior Dos Santos, to grab a win with your online betting picks.

UFC 146 Betting Pick: Junior Dos Santos



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