This Saturday, January 3rd, the UFC will be putting on one of the biggest title fight they can offer. Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier have not even attempted to hide their feelings toward one another. As this bad blooded rivalry approaches, another great way to get involved and invested in these fights is to set up a fantasy MMA lineup with a chance to walk away a little wealthier. I’m here to give some advice as to how to approach a lineup and break down some fighters.
This week, there are two exciting contests over at Draft Kings. Head on over and check them out!
Jon Jones UFC 183 VIP Experience
-$7,500 in total prizes, $27 to enter
-1st place winner will be flown to Las Vegas the weekend of January 31 for UFC 183 – 3 night hotel stay will be paid for along with $1,500 for flights and spending money. The winner will have floor seats for the fights, and the opportunity to meet light heavyweight champ and pound-for-pound great, Jon Jones.
MMA $50,000 Takedown
-$50,0000 in prizes, 1st place wins $10K
-$27 to enter, top 420 places paid out
-Pick 5 fighters while staying under the $50K salary cap to win a share of $50,000!
Fighters to avoid: Jones, Cormier, Gaudinot, Burkman, Jordan, Cannonier.
The first fighters that everyone is going to look at to put in their lineup are the fighters set to face off in the main event: Jon Jones and Daniel Cormier. However, in my opinion, it would be best to stay away from putting either one of these guys in your lineup. This is a very close contested fight and each fighter is going to be pushed like they never have before. Regardless of who wins, I see this fight going the distance. And since this is fantasy MMA, and finishes pay off, this puts the prices of these guys simply too high to put in your lineup. I advise anyone to stay away from this particular fight, no matter how enticing it may appear.
The reason why you want to avoid choosing Guadinot and Burkman for your lineup is because I simply believe they are outclassed in their respected matchups. Both of their opponents are ultra aggressive strikers that can turn off the lights on their opponents at any given moment. Unless you like to live dangerously or you’re feeling extremely lucky, I would avoid these fighters in your lineup.
When heavyweights fight, particularly lower level fights, typically the first heavyweight to land cleanly is the victor. Not much is know about Cannonier, and Jordan is somewhat a veteran, however, he has a deteriorating chin. Jordan has knockout power, but his chin is simply too much of a liability.
Fighter with great values: Cerrone, Felder, Tavares, Garbrandt.
Cerrone is priced at $11,000, which isn’t bad considering his finishing ability and his high percentage chance of winning his bout. Cerrone thrives on pressure and possesses very high caliber Muay Thai skills. To beat Cerrone, one must back him up with long jabs and straights and not give Cerrone any space to utilize his long ranged striking. Jury is tall and has relatively good range, however, he has never really displayed excellent pressure in fights. Given this bit of information, I believe Cerrone will be able to pick up the victory sooner or later.
Felder, Tavares, and Garbrandt are absolutely live underdogs. Felder has the advantage in striking in his matchup, and he also has the activity advantage. What I mean by that is when Felder’s opponent (Castillo) takes his opponents down, he more or less just holds them there not doing anything. No advancing. No ground-and-pound. Felder is constantly throwing strikes and actively scrambling to get back to his feet when he is on the ground. Felder is definitely the underdog in this fight, however, I believe he’ll get the judges nod (or hopefully a TKO) in this fight.
Tavares is fighting a faded Marquardt. I’m not going to sugarcoat it. Marquardt’s skills have declined significantly and his style is just a bad matchup against a guy like Tavares. Simple as that.
Garbrandt is coming into this fight as an unknown guy to most fans, but don’t be fooled. This guy can scrap. He’s an excellent striker fighting a generic TUF fighter with really no skills that standout. Garbrandt is an excellent steal in this league that will also grant you extra cap space to choose better fighters.
With all that said, my MMA fantasy lineup is as follows:
Horiguchi — $12,000
Cerrone — $11,000
Tavares — $9,300
Felder — $9,000
Garbrandt — $8,700
Be sure to tune-in this Saturday and I hope this advice column helped. Enjoy the fights.
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