Laying Chalk And Taking Dogs: A Gambler's Look At UFC 113: Machida vs. Shogun II

This is by no means an encouragement for you to go out and start blowing your hard earned paycheck by gambling on fights (we would never do that!  It's illegal!), it is simply a fun look at one of the more interesting aspects of being a fight fan.

Lyoto Machida vs. Mauricio "Shogun" Rua

This has been a relatively stable line since it was introduced.  You can get on the champ (Machida) at around -185 to -200 on most of the major sites while Rua is in the +150 to +160 range.  Historically Machida's fight odds have been very off come fight night but it seems like the books and the public have figured out his value.  Some of the classic "off" lines were Machida actually being an underdog on some sites against Sokoudjou, Coming in at -170 against Tito Ortiz and coming in at -180 against Rashad Evans. Shogun comes in as the underdog for the third straight fight as he was +160 coming in to the Chuck Liddell fight and +405 in the first Machida bout.

The biggest question coming in is if Machida made any adjustments to his style and if Rua will be able to fight the tight, disciplined style that he used in the first fight.  I scored the first fight for Machida 3 rounds to 2 but it was clear that in the 4th and 5th round he was using Machida's stance to pick apart his legs and was able to not chase and play into Lyoto's hands.

Given that we do have a first fight to base our pick off of I feel fairly safe thinking this fight is close to a coin flip unless Rua either changes his style or Machida made major adjustments.  Given that it's about 50/50 I'd advise a small play on Shogun if you can get him at +160.

Paul Daley vs. Josh Koscheck

Daley enters the fight as a +180 to +205 underdog on most major sites.  Koscheck is at -230 to -255.

This fight seems very easy to forecast.  Daley has always had trouble with guys who take the fight to the ground with any degree of skill.  Jake Shields had his way with him, Nick Thompson controlled him..etc.  If Koscheck loses his mind and decides to stand up with Daley, it's clear that Paul could get a stoppage win.  But I really believed Josh when he had the interview where he said that he was going to take him down and choke him out in the first round.

The "stupid gameplanning" by Koscheck has always been overblown and I really doubt he plays into the one kind of fight that can give Daley a win.

I like a good sized bet on Koscheck up to -290.

Kimbo Slice vs. Matt Mitrione

Most sites are running both men at -115 so really you just need to find the guy you think has a better than 54% chance of winning and that's your bet.

Kimbo Slice has the advantage of the better training camp and his time at ATT may have even turned him into a better all-around fighter than a Mitrione.  However, every time Slice has been hit squarely, even going back to his streetfighting days, his knees have buckled.  Mitrione has very good power and Slice's power appears to be overstated.

The combination of Mitrione's power, Kimbo's questionable chin, and the fact that he isn't going to be able to toss Mitrione around in the clinch like he did to Alexander makes me want to say that Matt Mitrione is a good bet.  But I just feel like there is something off here, my main advice is to stay away from putting money on this fight.  But, if you feel like you really want to have something on the line, go with Mitrione.

Sam Stout vs. Jeremy Stephens

Stout has beautiful technical striking while Stephens is a "load up and fire one bomb at a time" kind of guy.  I don't see the fight going any way other than a long, slow picking apart by Stout while Stephens chases trying to land a bomb.  Currently Stout is a -210 to -185 favorite.  I like a pretty big play on him up to -220.

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