UFC Vegas 84: Three Bets Moneyline Bets
Marcus McGhee (8-1) vs Gaston Bolanos (7-3)
UFC VEGAS 84: THREE BEST MONEYLINE BETS – Bursting onto the UFC scene back in April, McGhee has delivered two finishes and looks to continue his finishing ways this weekend.
He is a power puncher with solid explosivity and ability to crash the pocket quickly. The flaw that led to his lone defeat was his defensive grappling, although it looks like he has addressed that to a certain extent. I expect his team, The MMA Lab, to continue sharpening his skills and making him improve to be competitive at the UFC level.
Bolanos was known for being a tremendous striker from his kickboxing and muay thai days. He has had an above average time in the MMA world, which rang true when he defeated a BJJ black belt in his UFC debut.
Bolanos survived some sticky situations on the mat but was able to work back to his feet and get to his handy work to get the win on the scorecards. He is a technical striker with deceiving power in his hands. Mix in the fact that he has taken more steps in his preparation like spending time at Team Alpha Male and AKA, I expect to see better versions of his every time he steps in the cage.
McGhee has a ton of hype behind him because of the raw power he brings to the cage, but he is up against a more seasoned striker who can make him pay for some of the mistakes he makes.
Of course, McGhee makes up for those mistakes with his power, but I expect Bolanos to counter him effectively and land more damaging blows. I could see this fight going the distance and if Bolanos can avoid the huge power of McGhee, he should be the one landing more damage over the course of the fight to pull off the upset.
Also, interesting to note that I got this line at +245 earlier this week, so there is clear love for Bolanos coming in still.
The Pick: Gaston Bolanos +185
Matthew Semelsberger (11-6) vs Preston Parsons (10-4)
Coming into his tenth fight with the promotion holding one of the most insane stats you’ll ever see, Semelsberger has landed 10 knockdowns in 9 UFC appearances. It’s clear his physicality from his college football days is translating to MMA, but it’s been a treat to see him hone in on the technical aspects of MMA to become a better fighter.
He is looking to avoid a three-fight losing streak after losing close fights in his last two.
It was a steep step up in competition for Parsons last time as he took on veteran, Trevin Giles. He made a very good account of himself even though he lost by split decision that night.
He still managed to showcase how smothering and dominant he could be with his grappling. ‘Pressure’ is the perfect nickname for Parsons as you never normally see him take a back step. He takes command of the cage immediately and before you know it, he’s on the hips of his opponents and dragging them to the mat.
Classic striker vs grappler matchup here, but I feel the grappler should be able to do what he does best.
As long as Parsons can avoid the big power of Semelsberger early, I expect Parsons to drag this fight to the mat and have success from the jump.
We’ve seen Semelsberger get grinded out in the past and it’s not out of the realm of possibility that it could happen again, especially considering the style Parsons brings to the table. Add in the fact that he’s a dog? Count me in.
The Pick: Preston Parsons +100
Ricky Simon (20-4) vs Mario Bautista (13-2)
Having his five-fight winning streak snapped last time around by Song Yadong, Simon looks to get back to his winning ways and continue his climb to the top of the division.
Simon was unable to get his game off as Yadong did a great job of stopping his takedowns and forcing Simon to strike. Simon has big power in his looping overhand rights but will be unable to trump someone who is a better technical striker than him if he can’t land takedowns. When he does get his takedowns going, he is one of the best grinders, especially considering the gas tank he has.
This weekend Bautista looks to secure his sixth-straight win as well as the biggest win of his career. Bautista has finished three of his last five wins and showed an improved confidence each time out. He is nasty in the striking realm with his elbows and knees, and he is known for his aggressiveness.
Unfortunately, his flaw comes when opponents can grind him out with wrestling and grappling. We saw Bautista nearly lose his last fight after giving up four takedowns from Blackshear. Many believe Blackshear deserved the victory that night too.
I think this is a very bad stylistic matchup for Bautista. Simon should be able to avoid getting knocked out here, all the while landing takedowns and putting Bautista into uncomfortable positions.
Look for Simon to wear on Bautista and smother him with his wrestling, on route to a decision victory.