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Over/under on Fabricio Werdum odds versus Cain Velasquez: 5-to-1 underdog?

By Zach Arnold | April 19, 2014

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The good news: Fabricio Werdum has a ton of experience, has the stamina, and has a ground game worthy of respect.

He was able to take Travis Browne down multiple times but I’m surprised he wasn’t able to get a finish.

The bad news: Cain Velasquez is a wrestler supreme, has a tremendous gas tank, and can badly hurt you standing up.

And I’m not sure many people knew about Saturday’s fight card on Fox.

Werdum is a tough opponent for anyone and the fight should be easier to sell after Saturday night’s Orlando performance. But I’m thinking the line will be at least +500 on Werdum, perhaps higher than that. Make the case to me and give me a path to victory that Werdum can exploit for victory here. We know Cain can get flattened but he got flattened by a guy with real hands (Junior dos Santos).

As for the other fights on the Orlando card, no real surprises. Donald Cerrone is absolutely money on network television. He and Mighty Mouse Johnson are clutch on the big stage.

Topics: MMA, Media, UFC, Zach Arnold | 24 Comments » | Permalink | Trackback |

24 Responses to “Over/under on Fabricio Werdum odds versus Cain Velasquez: 5-to-1 underdog?”

  1. david m says:

    If Edson Barboza had a chin, he would be unstoppable. I feel bad for him; he was clearly a far better fighter than Cerrone but just has a glass jaw.

    Werdum shouldn’t be that big of an underdog; he has quite good standup and is a better grappler than Cain. I can’t think of anyone Cain has fought who had the ability to submit him. I guess Nog, but he was already washed up at that juncture. Werdum looked quick, strong, not tired at all, and relentless.

    Travis Browne needs to go to a boxing gym to learn how to throw a punch; that was embarrassing.

    Nurmagomedov is a beast and I think he is 1 win away from a title shot. He is already 6-0 in the UFC.

  2. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    Kh@bib!! check out him wrestling a bear on you-tube. I’m surprised Joe never brought that fact up. But Joe was right about Khabib tonight, its no hype.

    Like usual dana is woefully pathetic in his on the spot evaluations. Werdum,who was in awesome shape, was pretty obviously proving a point that he can go 5 full rounds.

    He really could have finished him easily in the second round. But it looked like he was working a bit of a different game, with some new ground positions in preparation for Cain.

    So how does he beat Cain? Well hopefully he still gets the shot after Dana badmouthing his performance.
    But if he does, he will have the reach advantage and the technical striking advantage. Werd kicks unlike cain, and won’t be concerned about being taken down should a kick be caught. See when Hapa caught a kick and just stood there for several minutes debating whether or not to try and take Werd down?
    Werds size is an advantage in the grappling exchanges, and the guy is a stud basically for whipping crazy dudes like Erickson nog and Fedor.
    Also a small X factor in Werds favor… Cain is again coming off surgery for the shoulder. Factoring in that bit of ring rust I think Werd finishes him with a choke or Ko.

  3. 45 Huddle says:

    1.99 Million viewers. Might go up since the show went well over. That is really bad.

    They continue to stretch things thin and everything is tanking.

  4. Nepal says:

    As much as I enjoy good HW fights, I can’t stand bad ones. Watching a big lug like Browne for 5 rounds was horrible. First round great, 2nd round impressive. Rd’s 3 to 5. Reading the pbp would have been a less waste of time.

    No wonder Nate and Gil ducked Khabib. Nate would be smashed in the 1st round and I don’t see Gil fairing any better than anyone else.

    WMMA. I simply couldn’t care less. Couldn’t watch the fight. Just couldn’t do it.

  5. Nepal says:

    One more thing. What were Joe and that idiot Goldberg talking about? Werdum’s striking? Like they’re surprised??? Werdum’s striking has been excellent for years. I would think any MMA fan would have picked Werdum’s striking over Brownes any day. Werdum has shown great striking for years, this was a surprise to those guys?

    I’ve always enjoyed Rogan, he just comes across as a real person but his shilling of late is really annoying.

  6. rst says:

    People keep saying that Verdum’s striking has improved, but his Striking has been good since back in the Pride days.
    I haven’t noticed his striking being all that much better then its always been,
    when that Verdum shows up.

    If that Verdum showed up, He could hang with Cain striking and might have a better chance then Dos in the Ground and standup clinch from being a JJ guy.
    He could eck out an close or arguable win the same way Gus “beat” Jones.

    But if I were a betting man (I’d make a better cooler then betting man), I’d bet this is about the time were Verdum once again proves why he’s as good as the best but never gets a belt and evens out a great win with an absolute egg to bring himself back to a neutral zero were he seems to be most comfortable.

  7. Diaz's cashed bowl says:

    Travis Browne: 90 days suspension, broken nose, cut over right eye.

    Gee where are the broken ribs and hand?
    Didn’t Dana(damage promoter, fester) White say, during the damage control portion of the promotion, that’s why Hapa LOOSED.

    From experience I say Hapa gassed out in the first because he was scared s#!tless being on the ground with Werd. Adrenaline dump.

    Hapa doesn’t have grappler muscles. Unless you train for that type of activity(a lot) it wears you out in about 3 minutes and it takes 5-10 minutes to recover. Werd “cooked” hapa with just a few minutes on the ground, and broke his oxygen intake port to boot.

    Broken hand…pfff. Hunt broke his hand twice on bigfoot and did he get all gassed and turn into a shot fighter all of a sudden?

    • rst says:

      Well one things fer sure,
      Browne was pretty much a gassed out sitting duck for 21 minutes for some reason,
      (almost exactly after that rather loud and hard kick to the ribs Verdum landed),
      but all Verdums improved striking never put him away.

      He never flopped to his butt and scootched around for half the fight or got left in a bloody heap like barnett.
      I’d watch a rematch versus a non-terrified Browne with a better gas tank.
      No reason it shouldn’t happen eventually if he can overcome his crippling fear.

  8. Dick Tracy says:

    Good card overall but not enough names to draw ratings. Wmma fight was horrible and felt even worse because the broadcasters hyped it as fight of the night. Stop selling shit people ain’t buying. T Browne choked.

  9. Dick Tracy says:

    On a side note I wonder what Fox thinks of these ratings? Do they put up with it cuz of the deal or or ..? What’s Foxs average numbers on that day/time slot?

    • 45 Huddle says:

      I can’t imagine they are happy.

      The UFC took a good number of fighters that should be competing on FOX and put them on their own Fight Pass Network.

      Nogueira/Nelson should have been on a FOX channel to help bump up ratings. So should have Gustafsson/Manuwa.

      If I am FOX, I feel pissed off with the way the UFC is treating the deal. Imagine ESPN signing an exclusive contract with MLB, and then they increase the number of games per season and put those games online only. That is essentially what the UFC did.

      And at the same time they increased the number of shows dramatically and watered down each individual show. Now FOX has watered down cards which I am sure they didn’t think they were signing on for.

      The UFC is a complete mess. Ratings are in the toilet. PPV Buys are in the toilet. The fans are fed up. And Fertitta and White are clueless because they just see international money coming in and think is means success.

      • 45 Huddle says:

        This is what Meltzer wrote about the ratings in a brief comment on his daily update:

        “–That UFC number last night is concerning. The reality is they only have a limited number of stars. It was a card insiders were lauding because of the hard to predict matchups, and generally strong quality. But the average sports fan is losing interest except for the few big shows a year. There are a lot of issues involved. The business model is about providing as much content as possible. But the appeal in the U.S. is not going in a positive direction.”

        • Alan Conceicao says:

          That’s not all. That gate in Quebec City was pitiful. They’ve gone the complete wrong direction on making stars. Meanwhile, boxing went off PPV for the last couple years, and it looks like it’ll be a bumper year for them. Not saying that I’m happy that they chose that path this year, but you’re probably looking at 3 PPVs with Canelo and each doing at least 300K for buys. Floyd has two fights: pencil in at least 1.5 million combined, but realistically more than that. Supposedly Manny/Bradley II did 800K – Manny’s gonna rematch Marquez and do another similar or bigger number. And Cotto/Martinez II. Maybe Chavez Jr/Golovkin (if JCC Jr. doesn’t sign with Haymon). You’re looking at 4 million buys for Showtime and HBO this year.

          Meanwhile, the UFC can’t seem to break 350K for buys. They might be able to if they paid GSP what he’s worth (like $15 million), but they’ll never do that. They have all the outlets in the world to increase interest, but they keep shooting themselves in the foot by taking obvious PPV headliners like Gustafsson and burying them on shows no one will or can watch.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          Check out this list of numbers. It is the list of UFC events by year over the last 9 years (including 2014).

          18, 19, 20, 20, 24, 27, 31, 33, & 50.

          The most number of events they increased by ever was 4 during this time. And now they are increasing the number of events by ~17.

          They are so darn thin in every card that fans can’t keep track and just aren’t watching it anymore.

          50 Cards…. 10 Weight Classes…. 100 Fighters at Welterweight Alone…. 5 places to watch the fights…. Random times and days to watch the fights….

          No wonder nobody can follow it. I only watched Werdum/Browne without fast forwarding the fight this weekend. I think the brings the number of fights I have watched from beginning to end to under 10 still for the year.

        • 45 Huddle says:

          There was only two logical options when it came to increasing the number of cards.

          1) Do it slowly like they had been.

          2) Rip the band-aid off and do a weekly show on Wednesday nights and build an audience that way.

          They did neither and are suffering major consequences for it.

          At this point…. just let the company burn to the ground. The way they are treating grapplers is garbage. They are basically forcing fighters to stand and fight.

          And fights like Jones/Sonnen and GSP/Diaz were bad enough. Now talking about how Gina deserves to fight Rousey day 1. And yet, Gina:

          1) Has not had a fight since August 2009.
          2) Has not had a win since October 2008.
          3) Was never even a champion in MMA.

          Like I said. Just let the UFC burn to the ground at this point. It is such a clusterf#ck that it doesn’t resemble a sport anymore.

      • Dick Tracy says:

        Yes, you’d think FOX/UFC could generate more interest in a special sporting event 4 times a year.

        Overnight tbythenumbers
        8 pm Viewers(M)
        ABC The Ten Commandments (8-11PM) 5.87
        NBC Dateline Saturday Mystery (8-10PM) 4.49
        FOX UFC: Werdum vs. Browne (8-10PM) 1.99
        CBS Mike & Molly – R 2.20

      • rst says:

        I thought this was a better card then more then a few of the recent ones.

        With Nurmy/Dos Anjos, 2 great HW’s (regardless of wether the fight panned out to its potential), Cerrone, Miesha Tate is pretty.

        I’m not sure what the popular audience is looking for.
        Maybe they’d get better ratings if they can get George Clooney in there or something.

  10. Tomer says:

    Werdum’s kip-up was the highlight of the night for me.

  11. Nepal says:

    Part of the reason they are having a hard time building stars is that a lot of MMA fighters are dumb. Dumb doesn’t usually build stars well, the Diaz Bro’s are the exception. You have some smart guys like Sonnen and various others but mostly, just listen to them talk to Rogan after their wins.

    They usually can’t even formulate a grammatically correct sentence and they talk about god a lot. I realize they’re tired but that’s not a good excuse for “I don’t got no money” sentences.

    Masvidal is a really talented fighter but he sounds dumb as a shovel. Can you imagine somebody that speaks like a retard being pushed by the UFC? And this god thing, it must be close to 50% of the fighters thank god. It’s very easy to say “you must be stupid to believe in god” but the reality is, indoctrination is very very powerful. Most of these fighters come from the lower end of the socioeconomic spectrum and that’s where religion thrives.

    I don’t think MMA is going to start getting smarter fighters any time soon and that doesn’t bode well for broadening its mass appeal.

    • klown says:

      Nepal, but in what sport are the athletes geniuses? A selling-point of MMA (that used to be touted a few years back) is that MMA athletes are slightly smarter and better educated than most. I’ve no idea how true that is, considering I don’t watch any other spots.

      • Chuck says:

        Not too many of them man. A few weeks ago Real Sports with Bryant Gumbel covered student athletes and how many of them are getting shitty jobs after “graduating” college because they are taking shitty blow-over classes in college and are only going because of the scholarships to play whatever sport they are doing (always down to football and basketball). Most of them still only read and write about about an eight grade level. The colleges and universities are failing them (not grade wise, I mean at a philosophical level) and are not giving them a good education.

        They would be better off to just pay them to play and not give them an education than to encourage them to take some useless major (usually general education or something like that) and having them pass with C minuses.

      • Nepal says:

        Actually I really don’t know if they are dumber or smarter than any other sport’s athletes. It just seems like they are dumber, some guys are well spoken but they seem to be the exception. Maybe it’s because it’s such an individual sport that it seems they are dumber to me. If you follow baseball or hockey, like I used to avidly, those guys seemed not as bottom of the barrel as many of the MMA fighters appear to be. You just didn’t see guys like Silva (with the tattoos on his neck, his name escapes me now).

    • rst says:

      “Part of the reason they are having a hard time building stars is that a lot of MMA fighters are dumb.”

      Ehh… MMA fighters in general seem to be some of the smarter athletes that I’m aware of. They’re think tanks compared to most boxers.

      I dont really follow other mainstream sports like Basketball or Football, but I’ve seen some mumbling idiots among their numbers. And those are presumably the more popular examples that I’ve been exposed to casually.

      Sonnen is smart at and being a weasel and clown. It doesn’t make him a better fighter.

      I’m still convinced that its the general public who are dumb, and it may be an example of MMA fighters being too smart.

      Dumb people dont like smart things,
      it puts them back on a rational scale.


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