Welcome fight Enthusiasts to the inaugural card on the new ESPN+ platform. If early weigh-ins are any indication of things to come, the clarity, professionalism and depth of coverage for we consumers will be improved substantially.
As is customary, I’ll provide my main event breakdown published in VSiN’s ‘Point Spread Weekly’ publication 1-16-19 first then update those thoughts with any other releases I feel offer gaming value.
(All GambLou.com releases are understood to be a standard/hypothetical $100.00 per position unless otherwise stated. We employ $100.00 to easily track results as every GambLou.com release is recorded and accounted for each Monday AM in the “Money Morning’ report. On line, up to date reporting for all sporting events we work is available by accessing the ‘Profitability’ tab on the Gamblou.com webpage. The Profitability tab displays win percentage, gross profit and bottom line profitability up to date in real time. It’s business).
--Insight the Octagon (originally published 1-16-19)--
Insight the Octagon wants to welcome all those savvy enough to have invested in VSiN’s Point Spread Weekly in 2019! Bang for the buck there is no better Profitable Sports Gaming weekly newsletter in my humble opinion.
Jon Jones dominating performance put an exclamation point on a profitable 2018 for fight Enthusiasts following my PSW releases. Jones finish of Gustafsson earned a total of 1.95 units as I had released Jones as the second leg of a parlay with Usman (earning +.95) and the ‘fight does not go the distance -110’ prop (later converted to Under 4.5 rds. -110) which earned another unit. So the final tally for 2018: 17-15 +3.90 units.
UFC Favorites in 2018 were 284-133-16 (65.5%) just 0.4% lower than in 2017’s 65.9% which is important to understand for all seeking value in underdogs. Understanding that only two or three ‘dogs per card win (on average) mandates that appropriate due diligence AND selection must be conducted in order to uncover dog value on any UFC card.
Value may also take the form of a favorite but I’ll admit that my approach is focused towards uncovering two (or more) live underdogs and wagering on them in pairs if possible allowing me to pocket profit in case of a split result. This is cornerstone to my approach to wagering on all sports utilizing a moneyline…why allow the counter to pick up all the pennies?
Here’s my breakdown of the inaugural ESPN+ fight card
Flyweight Championship (125lbs.) TJ Dillashaw -200 vs. Henry Cejudo +170 (Westgate LV)
Bantamweight (135lbs.) Champion TJ Dillashaw drops down a division in order to try to capture Henri Cejudo’s Flyweight title this Saturday night in Brooklyn, NY. Dillashaw is best known for two dominant performances in attaining then defending his 135lbs. title against Cody Garbrandt.
Dillashaw who is the taller fighter owns reach advantages over his opponent. He fights utilizing a combination of his collegiate wrestling base supplemented with BJJ (grappling) and Muay Thai (striking). Dillashaw is athletic, powerful, fast, and quite honestly as complete a fighter as is on the roster but that is based on his performances at 135lbs.
I saw Dillashaw in a recent interview where he claimed to be already down to 135 and he looked quite lean. My concerns in this fight when assessing Dillashaw’s chances to win center around how this weight cut will affect his power and stamina.
Flyweight Champion Henry Cejudo is a ‘world class’ wrester who will be fighting at a weight he is most accustomed too, he’ll have a wrestling advantage over Dillashaw (although that may be negated to an extent because Dillashaw will be much the larger/bigger man by the time they ring the opening bell).
I anticipate the extremely athletic Cejudo to try to utilize his speed and quickness to frustrate a Dillashaw that looked lighting quick against Garbrandt and other 135’ers but may look a bit pedestrian against the quicker more agile Flyweight. Cejudo’s evasiveness and ability to get Dillashaw to the floor are the keys to him winning Saturday and while Cejudo lacks real punching power what he does not lack is cardio, heart and championship mettle.
In this fight I expect Dillashaw to come straight at Cejudo, try to walk him down and turn out his lights early via a striking barrage for what quickness Dillashaw displays will be early in this fight. Dillashaw feels that Cejudo will not be able to hurt him and may underestimate the smaller Olympic gold medalist. Cejudo for his part understands exactly what’s coming and he’ll counter TJ’s determination with evasive movement, flashy footwork and strategic take down attempts. The plan is to frustrate as Dillashaw tries to navigate Cejudo’s movement.
So the question in this main event becomes this, Can Dillashaw contend with Cejudo’s quickness/evasiveness and eventually catch Henry with a haymaker? Will he be able to batter the smaller man with kicks/strikes to slow him initially then take him out? Or…
Will Cejudo be able to draw upon his athletic ability and evasiveness to make Dillashaw look slow and premeditated at this lower weight? Will he be able to frustrate him while forcing Dillashaw to expend energy while taking this fight into the Championship rounds?
Cejudo’s best chance to win in my judgement is by taking Dillashaw very deep into this fight and hoping the weight cut was too much for him at 125 lbs. I believe that this may be a little too much to ask for based on the years of wrestling and weigh cuts each man has endured.
In this fight I made Dillashaw a -220 favorite so I can find no real value based on current pricing. I also view the total in the fight (4.5 Over -135) as spot on so in this first ever Fight Night via ESPN+ we’ll lean to TJ Dillashaw but not make any official release on this main event.
Te Edwards -130 vs. Dennis Bermudez +110
While I have no release in the main event I do like a position that is the main event of the early prelims. Dennis Bermudez who was a touch undersized in the Featherweight (145lbs.) Division moves up to the lightweight Division (155lbs.) to face Te Edwards.
Bermudez will be giving away size, height and reach to Edwards who is the younger man by three years. Bermudez who will hold a vast experience advantage may think that this is an easy fight since Edwards was KO’d in his last but I believe quite the opposite. Edwards is the more accomplished wrestler, he’s younger and he has abundant power in his right hand…abundant. Couple that ‘pop’ with Bermudez’s jaw which is as fragile as porcelain and we can determine value with Edwards. I’ll advise those that can get the prop ‘Edwards inside the Distance’ +160 to consider that angle for added value but for many of our PSW readers that do not have access to this prop I’ll offer this side position available to all.
--Updated 1-19-19 11:30am EST—
I must say that I am impressed at how both main event combatants made weight and appear prior to this fight. My biggest question revolves around Dillashaw’s weight cut, as it is one thing to make weight but another to then be force to expend the amount of energy required to overtake another Championship fighter in a five round affair.
The over 4.5 rounds is lined at -122 which means the oddsmakers agree with me in my gut feeling that this fight goes to decision. We know Henry fights to decision 85.7% of the time so that with the general feeling that this is a long fight forces me to believe that Henry is hot tonight.
(Pantheon full unit)
The other PSW release does have me nervous as Te Edwards was the last one on the scale in Brooklyn yesterday. I do concern myself with the weather in N.Y. specifically for the Arizona fighters who will unquestionably be distracted by the cold each and every second they are there.
Stewart -160 vs. Recountre +150
Stewart is an ex-Marine which sways me to him from the start. He’s talented, willing and will fight relentlessly. His transition to the MMALab is of key importance here for he was defeated in a recent LFA 46 bout by current badass and resident MMALab fighter James Nakashima. Stewart then joined the gym in Phoenix that Nakashima trains at (MMALAB) because he is dedicated to improve and he recognized that this is a gym with a deep diversity and depth of quality MMA fighters especially wrestlers.
Recountre is a wrestling, grinding based fighter so the question I pose is how quickly can one gain wrestling savvy and ability? I will pass on this fight but go on record as saying that Recountre may be live here.
Neal -175 vs. Muhammad +165
Neal is explosive, athletic and powerful yet his depth of competition faced has me feeling that the less flashy, more experienced unrelenting wrestling based grinder that is Muhammad is in a fine spot tonight.
Sandhagen-480 vs. Bautista +430
Sandhagen has been looking at a revolving door of opponents for this fight and finally he gets what many feel is a cakewalk but I would caution people to feel that way. Sure Sandhagen has the UFC experience as well his game especially his striking looks phenomenal but Bautista is not piece of meat. He is another fighter in from Phoenix from the MMALab and having watched him train personally I can assure you he is no +430 dog to anyone in this division despite his youth and inexperience. Bautista will compete.
Sandhagen/Bautista over 1.5 -125
Benavidez -225 vs. Ortiz +205
This is a rematch of a 2014 fight where Joe B won a tight yet fair decision. Benavidez (who closed -560 in that fight) was at the absolute top of his game and Ortiz still developing his at that time. Ortiz enters the Octagon the taller, larger fighter as well he’s five years the younger fighter who is now more in his prime while it’s my belief that Joe may be just past his. I like the hunger/revenge factor here
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