UFC Fight Night 42: Main Card Betting Odds and Predictions

Nathan McCarter@McCarterNFeatured ColumnistJune 5, 2014

UFC Fight Night 42: Main Card Betting Odds and Predictions

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    UFC Fight Night 42 hits Albuquerque, New Mexico, on Saturday evening with several matchups featuring Top Five-ranked fighters.

    The main event will be between No. 2-ranked lightweight contender Benson Henderson and No. 11-ranked Rustam Khabilov.

    Five other bouts will appear on the Fox Sports 1 main card including a top-five flyweight matchup between No. 1-ranked John Dodson and No. 5-ranked John Moraga. The winner may be in line for the next flyweight title shot later this year.

    The betting odds and predictions are simply for educational purposes to assist you in making a more informed decision prior to bell time. Also featured in the final slide will be a full fight-card parlay opportunity that is solely just for fun.

    Shall we begin?

Erik Perez (-120) vs. Bryan Caraway (-110)

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    This is a pick 'em fight.

    There is no value in an underdog because the odds are virtually even. It comes down to who you feel more comfortable with in this fight.

    Both Caraway and Perez are 1-1 in their last two bouts, and each suffered a split-decision loss to Takeya Mizugaki. However, No. 14-ranked contender Caraway has not been inside the Octagon in more than a year.

    Will he have any cage rust? Perhaps.

    Even with the potential for cage rust, I lean toward Caraway. He looked good against Mizugaki and followed that up with a nice submission win over hard-hitting Johnny Bedford. His wrestling background makes me feel more comfortable as he can fall back on grinding out a decision.

    Prediction: Caraway

    The Play: A small play on whomever you feel more comfortable with is perfectly fine.

Yves Edwards (+155) vs. Piotr Hallmann (-190)

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    Since 2011 Edwards is 3-4 with one no-contest. Has time simply passed him by? It is tough to say. Two of his most recent losses were competitive split decisions to talented fighters Daron Cruickshank and Isaac Vallie-Flagg.

    Hallman, on the other hand, is an up-and-coming talent who has only dropped one fight since 2011.

    This comes down to value.

    Hallman is an unproven commodity going against a crafty veteran with tricky striking, and you can get the veteran for a decent value. I think that's the smartest play you have here. Edwards has taken ample time off since his last fight and should be sharp in his return.

    Prediction: Edwards

    The Play: Take a chance on Edwards' value.

Rafael Dos Anjos (-305) vs. Jason High (+235)

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    Jason High drops to lightweight for this matchup, and he will get a chance to jump into the rankings with a win.

    Rafael dos Anjos sits at No. 5 in the official UFC rankings, and after being ragdolled by Khabib Nurmagomedov, he is in the cage with another strong grappler.

    Dos Anjos has never been stellar in any one area. He is a tough, well-rounded fighter who has found continual success at being just that. That is why nine of his 14 UFC fights have gone to a decision. However, he has struggled against strong grapplers. That is why High is the play.

    Stylistically, High is a great value. As a good wrestler and quality submission fighter, he will have a strength advantage over Dos Anjos. I think this is tailor-made for a decision upset that could help you take advantage of a more than 2-1 underdog.

    Prediction: High

    The Play: A solid play on High makes sense.

John Dodson (-500) vs. John Moraga (+350)

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    The only Top Five matchup on the card has the biggest discrepancy in betting odds.

    No. 1-ranked contender John Dodson sits at minus-500 heading into the fight, and there is simply no value to be had here.

    As much as I'd like to disagree on the odds after what TJ Dillashaw showed against Renan Barao, I can't. They're accurate. Dodson should roll in this fight.

    Moraga is a game fighter with a solid wrestling background and good power, but Dodson is simply better. He's faster and more powerful and can blend his MMA much better at this stage. This is his time to earn another crack at the gold.

    Prediction: Dodson

    The Play: Avoid the fight; there's no value.

Diego Sanchez (+150) vs. Ross Pearson (-185)

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    This is the most interesting fight on the main card.

    There is little doubt that Sanchez is past his prime, but he is still a quality fighter. He has looked bad since coming back to lightweight. He missed weight against Takanori Gomi and was then gifted a decision in that fight. He stood toe-to-toe with Myles Jury and Gilbert Melendez in his last two bouts but was outclassed. His style is just not effective against the top tier.

    Ross Pearson, on the other hand, has looked great since coming back to 155 pounds.

    Pearson's technical boxing could give Sanchez a lot of trouble, but I can't fight the feeling that we are in for another classic Sanchez brawl. And in front of his home crowd, I think he can pull off the upset. And at plus-150, it's worth the risk.

    Prediction: Sanchez

    The Play: Make a small play on the underdog.

Benson Henderson (-240) vs. Rustam Khabilov (+190)

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    Unbeaten in his last six fights, No. 11-ranked lightweight contender Rustam Khabilov has a chance to elevate his stock with a win over No. 2-ranked Benson Henderson.

    Khabilov has been impressive, but does he have what it takes to beat one of the most consistent fighters in the UFC? I don't think so. At least not yet.

    The biggest factor in this fight is that it is 25 minutes. Khabilov has not gone five rounds before and has slowed down in previous 15-minute fights. We know that will not happen with Henderson. He goes a hard 25.

    And at only minus-240, Henderson is a steal.

    Prediction: Henderson

    The Play: Take the former champ.

    Just-for-Fun Full Fight Card Parlay: Patrick Cummins, Jon Tuck, Scott Jorgensen, Bobby Voelker, Sergio Pettis, Bryan Caraway, Yves Edwards, Jason High, John Dodson, Diego Sanchez and Benson Henderson.


    All odds provided by OddsShark.com.