Like rust, the UFC never sleeps.
The MMA juggernaut rolls into Newark, New Jersey this weekend for UFC Fight Night: Covington vs Lawler (aka, UFC Newark). The good news for fans – the event starts early on Saturday (noon eastern, so no having to stay up past our bedtime) and the whole card is airing on ESPN.
The bad news: it’s a really weak card by UFC on ESPN (or UFC on FOX before that) standards.
At least the main event should be a good one (or, at the very least, meaningful). Former interim UFC Welterweight Champion, master troll, and MAGA fan, Colby Covington (-225) takes on former UFC Welterweight Champion Robbie Lawler (+185).
Covington has been promised a title shot if he gets by Lawler, which apparently the bookies expect to happen. If Ruthless Robbie isn’t able to land a killshot on Chaos, Covington should be able to wrestle his way to a W.
After that the card pretty much falls off, at least in terms of top-ranked talent. Regardless, there’s still some lines worth betting on: we’ve got two underdogs and two favorites we’re going with this week.
Clay Guida (+150) vs Jim Miller
Yes, the year is 2019 and Jim Miller and Clay Guida are fighting each other in the UFC. Two of the UFC’s longest-tenured fighters (Guida 2006, Miller 2008) have surprisingly never swapped leather until they step into the cage in New Jersey this Saturday.
On paper this fight seems like it should be a pick ’em, so Guida at +150 brings some value. He should have the toughness and wrestling chops to fend off Miller’s attacks (not to mention Miller is 2-5 over his last seven fights).
Trevin Giles (-155) vs Gerald Meerschaert
The 26-year-old Giles was on a tear before dropping his first pro fight last time out. Up until that fight, he was steamrolling the competition, finishing 10 of his 11 victims, with only one opponent lasting until the final horn. More impressive is his incredible well-rounded game, as he has five (T)KOs as well as five submission victories. His opponent, meanwhile, has dropped his last two fights and absorbs more strikes than he dishes out. While Meerschaert is a talented grappler, Giles should have the upper hand no matter where this fight takes place.
Mickey Gall (+105) vs Salim Touahri
Another surprise here as Mickey Gall is a slight underdog against Salim Touahri. This despite the fact that Touahri has never won in the octagon (0-2). While the youngster Gall has lost two out of his last three fights, he is still vastly talented and has the grappling pedigree to tap out Touahri (or at least grind out a decision victory).
Antonina Shevchenko (-160) vs Lucie Pudilova
Like Trevin Giles, Antonina Shevchenko also dropped her first pro fight last time out. This might explain the favorable betting number here (although it was at -175 recently, so jump on it while you can). The big sister of flyweight champion Valentina, Antonina is also a skilled kickboxer herself. And there’s a good chance Lucie Pudilova will be fine with making this fight a kickboxing bout, in which case Shevchenko should have a decided advantage.
Overall Results for This Column
Earnings (based on $100 bet per): ($126.01)
Return on Investment: N/A