Jan. 2 will bring us UFC 108 and for the three fights I am choosing, I am picking three underdogs.
The main event pits Rashad Evans against Thiago Silva. Evans is the favorite at -220 and Silva is the underdog at +175.
I still feel Evans is a straight forward wrestler who swings for the fences. Machida exposed this last summer and picked him apart. Silva is a tactical fighter with quite the arsenal in his game. Look for him to take this one to the ground early and get the submission. My pick is Silva.
Next we have Junior Dos Santos versus Gilbert Yvel. Dos Santos is the favorite at -300. Yvel is the underdog at +220.
Dos Santos is on a pretty good win streak but has yet to fight anyone with top tier talent. He will get his taste this weekend when he faces the Holland native, Yvel. Out of 36 wins for Yvel, 31 have been by knock out. Yvel is an excellent striker with great kicks and knees. He also has a ground game. If he wins his UFC debut, you will hear his name repeatedly. My pick is Yvel.
Finally we look at Joe Lauzon versus Sam Stout. Lauzon is the favorite at -300 and Stout is the underdog at +220.
Lauzon is great at submissions and very tough to beat on the ground, but can't hang with Stout on his feet. I spoke to Stout's coach, Shawn Tompkins, and he told me that Stout has really evolved in his ground game. I watched him train last week and his striking precision, speed and power are impressive. His fitness is definitely up to par. In between rounds he never looked tired. This should be a fast paced fight and extremely explosive. My pick is Stout.
Until next week, I hope you cash some tickets.
Question? Comment? E-mail me at: Erick Kapp