Here’s the second preview of tonight’s main card.
Rousimar “Toquinho” Palhares (-265) vs. Alan “The Talent” Belcher (+205)
This one is an interesting to one to bet on, because like many UFC fights, the outcome can be completely predicted on the basis of whether or not the fight remains standing or is taken to the mat. Alan Belcher will prefer it standing, but Palhares knows his best chance is on the ground.
Belcher is a big middleweight, but has problems keeping fights standing, so it doesn’t look good for him. His kicks are suspect and lead to a lot of take downs, and if he throws one it could be his ultimate downfall, because Palhares will find a way to turn it into a submission. Even if he can’t do that, his superior fight skills will win this one by decision.
Jim Miller (-230) vs. Nate Diaz (+180)
This is the main event and Diaz can get a shot at the title if he is able to win this, but he isn’t favored to do so. Miller is 21-3 and an outstanding 10-2 in the UFC and his only three losses have come to Benson Henderso, Gray Maynard, and Frankie Edgar, three of the best lightweight fighters. He’s just a very well rounded fighter, and Diaz is going to have his hands full, whether the fight remains standing or not.
Diaz is 15-7 and 10-5 in the UFC, but in his last ten fights he is a mere 5-5. He’s a good boxer and has some nice moves when it gets to the ground, but his wrestling is suspect. When he tried to move up to the 170 pound weight class, he was destroyed on the mat by Dong Hyun Kim and Rory MacDonald. And he hasn’t done well at lightweight either, as Joe Stevenson and Clay Guida had no problems getting him to the ground.
Miller is going to have to exploit Diaz’ weaknesses more than anything, in this fight, and that means getting it to the ground, because Diaz is a very poor wrestler. Miller’s strength is on the ground, too, so that is a good thing. Miller should be able to exploit this advantage and win the fight, if not pretty easily, but it wouldn’t be inaccurate to say the fight means more to Diaz, as this is going to be probably his only legit chance to make a run at a title.