UFC on FOX 7: Betting heavy on Henderson vs. Melendez

Ron Chenoy-US PRESSWIRE

UFC on FOX 7 betting odds have been stacked heavily towards the favorites, with Benson Henderson enjoying a large margin of bets over Gilbert Melendez.. Check out the MMA wagering menu and predictions for Saturday's card, courtesy of Odds Shark.

If the quality of recent competition is an indicator of whether Benson Henderson or Gilbert Melendez will win at UFC on FOX 7 on Saturday, it's not surprising that so much betting is on the champion.

More than 80 percent of the UFC betting volume at Bovada was on Henderson, who defends his lightweight strap against Strikeforce champion Melendez. Henderson (18-2) was -300 as of midweek, while Melendez was +230 (meaning a $100 bet would pay out $230 in profit).

"As in football, recent form is a key handicapping consideration and look at Henderson's wins: Frankie Edgar twice, Donald Cerrone twice, Nate Diaz, Jim Miller, Clay Guida," said Jack Randall of OddsShark.com.

"It's a who's who of the stacked UFC lightweight division and he beat them all."

Melendez, 21-2, meanwhile, has enjoyed a long winning streak and plenty of votes on pound-for-pound lists but he has done so against a lesser grade of MMA foe. He won a pair of controversial decisions against Josh Thomson (who faces Diaz on the same Fox card), Jorge Masvidal and Shinya Aoki.

Randall believes Henderson's size - he's a huge lightweight - will be the difference in controlling the fight against Melendez, who is a small lightweight. Henderson has been involved in seven straight decisions, winning six in the UFC.

Despite Melendez's fierce reputation, he has finished just one of his past five opponents.

Fans are backing the favorites in the other two marquee fights of the evening. More than 60 percent of the bets are on undefeated Daniel Cormier to take down former heavyweight champ Frank Mir.

Cormier was -450 at Bovada, while Mir was +325.

And the same percentage of bettors were backing Diaz over Thomson. Diaz was -210 against Thomson at +170.

The rest of the card, with lines from OddsShark.com's UFC odds pages, feature:

Yoel Romero -175
Clifford Starks +135

Anthony Njokuani -185
Roger Bowling +145

TJ Dillashaw -475
Hugo Viana +325

Jorge Masvidal -165
Tim Means +125

Joseph Benavidez -565
Darren Uyenoyama +375

Ramsey Nijem +210
Myles Jury -290

Lorenz Larkin +120
Francis Carmont -160

Chad Mendes -750
Darren Elkins +450

Matt Brown +260
Jordan Mein -380

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