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Ric's Picks: UFC Fight Night 38

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Thanks to Sean Knowles for the design.
Thanks to Sean Knowles for the design.

It's officially the halfway mark for this iteration of Ric's Picks, with five events behind us and five to go. If you're just checking in for the first time, head over to our debut post and get caught up.

UFC 171 was a great night for Ric's Picks. Here's the recap:

Bet: Tyron Woodley (+165)

Wager: 30 units

Result: WON 49.5 units

I was all over this fight when it was first announced. I wasn't sure that Tyron Woodley would dominate Carlos Condit, but I was sure that he could and would be able to win the first two rounds if he played to his strengths. For one-and-a-half rounds, Woodley executed his gameplan just as I had hoped.

Bet: Parlay of Hector Lombard (-200) and Myles Jury (-175)

Wager: 25 units

Result: WON 33.93 units

Hector Lombard and Myles Jury were both able to neutralize their respective opponents and cruise to relatively easily decisions. I felt very confident with these picks going in and the results matched expectations.

Bet: Myles Jury wins by decision (+140)

Wager: 10 units

Result: WON 14 units

Myles Jury's gameplan against Diego Sanchez had to be controlled and calculated. At the highest level, he hasn't shown to be a finisher, but rather a smothering mixed martial artist with a good fight IQ. Winning a decision (after already picking Jury to win outright) was the most likely outcome.

Bet: Tyron Woodley wins by TKO/KO (+900)

Wager: 5 units

Result: WON 45 units

I was not expecting this bet to cash. As mentioned earlier, I predicted Woodley to win two or three rounds and take a decision. That said, I was intrigued by the possibility of Woodley landing a huge shot (which he did multiple times, but Condit's chin is made of adamantium) or pounding Condit out while in top control.

Neither of these happened, but Condit's leg was injured during a takedown leading to the stoppage. Betting-wise, it was very fortunate and allowed me to profit on a longshot.

UFC 171 Result: +142.43 units

Total After Five Events: 234.55 units

After not really being able to gain much traction before UFC 171, my bets for this event came through in a huge way, going perfect for the night and setting myself up nicely for the second half of the competition. I badly needed an event like this, where I had strong feelings on established fighters, and the payoff was better than I could've hoped.

I'm not as thrilled with the lines for UFC Fight Night 38, but there are some spots where I feel value can be extracted. Let's dive in.

Bet: Parlay of Diego Brandao (-285) and Norman Parke (-245)

Wager: 15 units

Potential Winnings: 13.53 units

Diego Brandao should be able to replicate what Max Holloway did in his fight against Will Chope, getting inside the long reach and landing big shots to put this big man down. Brandao isn't as technically sound as Holloway or as patient, but what he lacks in accuracy and precision, he makes up for in sheer aggression and power. He's a finisher and if the fight hits the ground, he can end it there too.

Norman Parke isn't going to devastate his opponents, but he's typically better than them in every facet of the game (at least with the guys he's been matched up against so far) and has been able to mix those elements together with relative ease. In Leonardo Santos, Parke is facing a highly talented jiu-jitsu player, but that's where the accolades end. Parke will be able to dictate where the fight goes, keeping it standing if he's comfortable, but also staying tight inside Santos' guard if he takes it to the mat. Santos will need a hail mary submission to win this one against the much younger Parke.

UPDATE: Due to Diego Brandao's fight being cancelled, this bet goes from a two leg parlay to a straight bet of 15 units on Norman Parke at -245.

Bet: Parlay of Gian Villante (-110) and Norman Parke wins by decision (+100)

Wager: 10 units

Potential Winnings: 28.18 units

If Gian Villante can keep a consistent pace for three rounds, he beats Fabio Maldonado without much trouble. Easier said than done, as Villante has typically emptied the tank early, I think he will look much better than he did against Cody Donovan. He knocked Donovan out, but not before making it a much closer affair than it should have been.

Maldonado is overrated as a boxer. His striking defense is dreadful, but a granite chin and uncanny ability to absorb damage keeps him in every fight. If Villante can keep from tiring out (from landing a continuous stream of punches to Maldonado's face) and mix in takedowns, it's his fight to lose.

As mentioned above, Parke is most likely going to win and that win is most likely going to be a decision.

Bet: CB Dollaway (+188)

Wager: 5 units

Potential Winnings: 9.4 units

Cezar Ferreira is considered a rising fighter (on the older side of "prospect") in the middleweight division, while CB Dollaway is already a known commodity. I think that's partially why Dollaway is being overlooked in the fight, as he definitely has the offensive tools to defeat Ferreira (and a lot of other middleweights for that matter). He's a competent striker with decent, but unremarkable power and a good wrestler who aggressively chases submissions. All that said, he's shown a propensity to lapse defensively, leading to the wrong end of a few finishes. Ferreira will almost assuredly want to keep this fight upright, so Dollaway needs to avoid any big shots and take it to the mat to keep Ferreira off balance. I think Dollaway can come away with a decision here.

I initially had a 5 unit bet here on Ronny Markes winning inside the distance. He hasn't been much of a finisher in the UFC, using his suffocating top game to control opponents, but I thought this was his best opportunity yet to break the streak of decisions. Thiago Santos was submitted in under a minute by Cezar Ferreira, so I thought Markes would take it to the ground early and throw heavy hands or lock up a limb.

After missing weight by 5 pounds, I pulled that one back. He'll likely still be able to win at least a decision, but I'm staying far away.

UPDATE: Hat tip to SuperSartre in the comments below, who rightfully corrected me in regard to removing the bet on Markes. In the past, I've held off on bets in the chance that certain fighters would miss weight and then simply not place them if it that fear was confirmed. In this case, I had no concerns about Markes and had already locked in the bet. Removing it was a brainfart on my part due to muscle memory. The following bet stands:

Bet: Ronny Markes wins inside the distance (+110)

Wager: 5 units

Potential Winnings: 5.5 units

The below total is now updated to reflect the re-addition of that bet.

At Risk: 35 units

Potential Profit: 56.61 units

DISCLAIMER: I do not recommend betting units that resemble the amounts wagered in this competition. Due to its nature, I am attempting to profit at an advanced rate and risking significantly more than is advisable for proper bankroll management. Please evaluate the breakdowns provided and adjust accordingly.