Three Angles to Bet on UFC on ESPN 1: Velasquez vs Ngannou

Jason Paglia

Friday, February 15, 2019 7:28 PM UTC

Friday, Feb. 15, 2019 7:28 PM UTC

IT'S FINALLY HERE !!! Former UFC heavyweight champion - Cain Velasquez has come back home to Arizona for his long awaited return to the UFC. Velasquez has been plagued by injuries for the better part of 2.5 years.

<h2>Cain Velasquez (14-2) vs Francis Ngannou (12-3)</h2><p>When healthy, Valesquez is among the greatest heavyweights in UFC history. The problem is he hasn't fought since July of 2016, where he won by TKO over Travis Browne at UFC 200. Now, all that surrounds 'Cardio Cain' are questions. Fortunately for us, <a href="">these questions will be answered in the form of Francis Ngannou</a>. Ngannou is the most freakish physical specimen in the UFC today. He looks like he was molded from clay, and hits as hard as a small 4 door sedan...literally. While he is devastatingly dangerous in the first round of fights, he tends to fatigue rapidly in the rounds that follow. A fully healthy Cain Valesquez would dispatch of Ngannou easily. We wont know if he's healthy until the fight starts, but here is what we do know. 'Ring Rust' is real. It usually takes a fighter an entire round to feel comfortable in the Octagon off a 2.5 year layoff. We also know that Cain's style over the years is to wrestle his opponents to the ground, and wear them down over the course of an entire fight. I expect Francis Ngannou to go for the kill shot in round 1, but there is no guarantee he will land it. If Velasquez avoids the knockout blow early, I am certain we will see the 2nd round.</p><h2 style="text-align:center">THE PROP BET - Fight to start ROUND 2 - 77/100 (1.77) <a href=";a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18">Bet365</a></h2><h2 style="text-align:center"> </h2><h2> </h2><h2>Luke Sanders (12-3) vs Renan Barao (34-7)</h2><p>Unfortunately for a once storied Renan Barao, the wheels have fallen off this car miles ago. It has now been more then 28 months since Barao won a fight in the UFC. At one time considered the class of the division he is just 1-5 his last 6 fights, and it's easy to see why. The last time Barao looked like a complete fighter was 5 years ago with a dominating victory over Urijah Faber. Since then he has looked slow, lost power in his hands, and has lost the heart to fight through adversity. His opponent however has not. Luke Sanders brings it every fight. While he hasn't been ultra consistent in the UFC he has a clear edge in this fight. He has fantastic defensive wrestling to counter Barao's grappling and more importantly the ability to keep Barao at range. This should turn into a striking match and if that's the case, I'll take the more volume fighter. A more powerful and busy <a href="">Sanders should do just enough to grab the decision</a>.</p><h2 style="text-align:center">THE TIP - Luke Sanders 27/50 (1.53) <a href=";a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18">Bet365</a> (possibly by unanimous decision)</h2><p> </p><h2>Paul Felder (15-4) vs James Vick (13-2)</h2><p>This fight could be the best matchup on Sunday's card. James Vick does have a 5 inch height advantage on Paul Felder. Theoretically Vick can keep his distance and try to pick apart Paul Felder from distance and win this fight. The problem is Vick isn't always adept at using it to his advantage. Justin Gaetjie just drew the blueprint on how to beat James Vick in August. While Paul Felder doesn't have the dynamite in his hands that Gaetjie does, his power is sufficient enough to get the job done. Felder is a student of the game. He is better at analyzing his opponents weaknesses then Gaetjie was and Justin still found Vick's chin. Paul Felder should find the sweet spot between Vick's range and his face. Look for him to make Vick uncomfortable with a few takedowns at first, and find the window in the standup to <a href="">drop Vick for the finish</a>.</p><h2 style="text-align:center">THE TIP - Paul Felder 21/20 (2.05) <a href=";a=bf7f64f4-cd67-4904-9b00-6ded1d41fd18">Bet365</a> (possibly by TKO)</h2>
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