A former hub and a future conqueror headline the final events of the year this Saturday (December 4, 2021) when Jose Aldo looks to continue his bantamweight resurgence against Rob Font in UFC APEX in Las Vegas, Nevada. . UFC Vegas 44 will also see Brad Riddell take on Rafael Fiziev in a two-best hitting clash in the lightweight division, and Leonardo Santos will look to return to the UFC winning column at the expense of Clay Guida.
Christmas shopping is on the horizon, so let’s fatten up those bank accounts …
What went wrong with UFC Vegas 43?
Even with the exit of Terrance McKinney, all Sean Soriano had to do to ensure that a profit was not to voluntarily engage Shayilan Nuerdanbieke in grappling. He did this for about 1.5 rounds, after which he shot Nuerdanbieke down, was swept away and mentally excluded from the fight. Cody Durden and Sean Brady kept losses to a minimum with hairy wins, but it was extremely frustrating to watch.
UFC Vegas 44 Chances for the Undercard:
Dusko Todorovic (-160) vs. Maki Pitolo (+140)
Manel Kape (-250) vs. Zhalgas Zhumagulov (+200)
Jake Matthews (-190) vs. Jeremiah Wells (+160)
Cheyanne Buys (-190) vs. Mallory Martin (+160)
Alonzo Menifield (-170) vs. William Knight (+150)
Chris Gruetzemacher (-115) against Claudio Puelles (-105)
Azamat Murzakanov (N / A) vs. Jared Vanderaa (N / A)
Alex Morono (-220) vs. Mickey Gall (+180)
Louis Smolka (-145) against Vince Morales (+125)
Thoughts: While Chris Gruetzemacher is the best pick of the bunch, he’s far from the only one. Jake Matthews, Cheyanne Buys, Alonzo Menifield and Alex Morono are slightly dumped as favorites, while Vince Morales is worth a bit as an underdog.
With all due respect to Claudio Puelles, none of his three wins in the Octagon has been particularly impressive. He had been beaten by Felipe Silva before landing a bid, failed to stop the terrible Marcos Mariano and lost the first round to Jordan Leavitt before “The Monkey King” seemed to die out. Gruetzemacher’s relentlessness seems to be more than Puelles can handle, especially given the success that âGritzâ has had against a much stronger wrestler in Rafa Garcia.
It’s not the near 50/50 combat that the odds suggest, so make sure you are able to benefit from it.
Jeremiah Wells is just too limited to break into such a stacked division as welterweight. A decent wrestling doesn’t make up for his wild strikes and inability to control himself, making him a go-to choice for a seasoned and well-rounded tech like Matthews. Additionally, Matthews’ historically strong chin makes it highly unlikely that Wells could turn off his lights like he did for Warlley Alves.
I won’t deny that Buys let me down in a huge way against Montserrat Ruiz, but this game is entirely “Warrior Princess”. Mallory Martin barely escaped a much more limited attacker in Hannah Cifers, giving Buys a clear edge on the feet, and Buys is generally a better wrestler than Ruiz’s fight suggested.
It is worth a look.
Before their last two fights, I would have chosen William Knight to beat Alonzo Menifield. Now I am leaning towards “Atomic”. I initially believed that Menifield would prove unable to stay out of the pocket, but his solid fight against Ed Herman convinced me that he can stay out of the shorter ‘Knightmare’ wheelhouse and put implemented his much superior strike. If Menifield doesn’t give Knight the kind of grueling battle Knight wants, he’ll destroy his heavy foe from a distance, and that seems more likely than ever.
There are two arguments for Alex Morono to beat Mickey Gall. One is that Morono’s resilience and airtight submission defense is anathema to Gall, who relies on quick strikeouts and submissions before his fragile cardio can kick in. The second is that Gall has just achieved a victory and has not achieved two consecutive victories since 2016.
Either way, it’s mealtime for “Great White”.
While Louis Smolka tends to make me eat crow, Vince Morales seems to be a real problem for him. Smolka has yet to correct flaws in his striking defense which saw Casey Kenney fight him twice, leaving him vulnerable to Morales’ murderous right hand, and he was set aside by Jose Alberto Quinonez before “El Teco” stupidly tried to initiate the grapple himself. Smolka’s historically poor fight should allow Morales to keep him on his feet, where his boxing and power seem to reign supreme.
UFC Vegas Main Card Odds:
Rob Font (-150) vs. Jose Aldo (+130)
Rafael Fiziev (-125) vs. Brad Riddell (+105)
Leonardo Santos (-190) vs. Clay Guida (+160)
Jimmy Crute (-190) vs. Jamahal Hill (+160)
Brendan Allen (-365) vs. Chris Curtis (+280)
Bryan Barberena (N / A) vs. Darian Weeks (N / A)
Thoughts: Brad Riddell and Jamahal Hill are the prime underdogs on this main card.
I have believed in Rafael Fiziev since before he set foot in the Octagon. Man is and always has been an absolute beast. That said, he had a little more trouble than expected against Bobby Green, whose refusal to wither in the face of Fiziev’s assaults allowed him to take over in stride. That’s bad news against Riddell, who gets much, much stronger as the fights progress. Fiziev will inevitably win the first lap and probably has a slight technical advantage overall, but I trust Riddell’s durability and gas tank to lead him to victory in the second and third.
Hill may have come from a loss in which he suffered a horrific arm injury (see), but he has several key advantages over âThe Bruteâ. He is the fastest and most fluid striker, besides having significantly greater height and reach than the Australian, who struggled with Anthony Smith’s standing position even before he became dead legs. Hill is also a tough man to take and maintain, which means Crute likely won’t be able to save himself with withdrawals.
In short, Hill’s volume and finesse should lead him to a comfortable spread and brawl victory.
Best UFC Vegas 44 bets:
- Parlay – Chris Gruetzemacher and Jake Matthews: bet $ 150 to win $ 277.50
- Parlay – Cheyanne Buys and Vince Morales: bet $ 100 to win $ 243
- Parlay – Alex Morono and Brad Riddell: bet $ 100 to win $ 198
- Parlay – Alonzo Menifield and Jamahal Hill: bet $ 80 to win $ 250.40
Between the kickass main and co-main events and the quality matchmaking throughout, this one is worth more than its $ 0 admission price. See you on Saturday, Maniacs.
Initial investment (boosted) for 2021: $ 600
Current total for 2021: $ 1,973.73
Remember that MMAmania.com will provide LIVE, blow-by-blow coverage of the entire UFC Vegas 44 fight map. here, starting with the ESPN + The ‘preliminary’ matches, which are scheduled to start at 7 p.m. ET, then the remaining main card balance on ESPN at 10 p.m. ET.
For the latest and greatest news and ratings from UFC Vegas 44: âAldo vs. Font â, be sure to check out our full event archive here.