The UFC returns to Halifax, Nova Scotia, Canada this Sunday. Headlining their Fight Night card is a heavyweight barnburner between ranked contenders Travis Browne and Derrick Lewis. The rest of the card features great match ups. Let’s take a look at the odds for the two main bouts for UFC Halifax.
Derrick Lewis (-130) vs Travis Browne (+110)
As the odds stand, Browne is a very slight underdog. Lewis has a knack of drawing attention, and has been more active; I expect Browne to become more of an underdog as the fight gets closer. I expect Lewis to become at least a -150 favorite, and for Browne to be something like +130 at the time of the fight.
Even though Browne has more experience and more credible wins, his recent performances can’t be looked over. Browne is 1-3 in his last 4, and that one win came with a bit of controversy. Of course, most explain his recent lackluster form due to his gym. However, he has since left that gym; we’ll see if he returns to his old self.
Lewis has been on quite the roll, knocking out lower ranked heavyweights for much of his UFC career. However, both Matt Mitrione and Shawn Jordan were able to stop him previously. It’s clear that Lewis is still improving bit by bit, so the real question to ask is whether or not Browne is too big of a step up in competition.
No props are available as of yet, but Lewis by (T)KO is probably going to be the most popular for this UFC Halifax bout.
Pick: Browne via TKO
I’m going to go against this and pick the slight underdog Travis Browne. He has more weapons and has faced elite, well-rounded fighters for the last 3-4 years, racking up some quality wins in the process. Lewis is still growing, and even though he’s very dangerous, his approach is too simple and straight-forward for someone of Browne’s potential.
Hector Lombard (-150) vs Johny Hendricks (+130)
Even though both Lombard and Hendricks are on the downfall of their careers, they are both staples of the welterweight division. However, this fight will be at middleweight since neither man can healthily make 170 lbs anymore. The odds show some faith in Hendricks to bounce back, but it may just be wishful thinking.
Lombard has sustained some serious damage in his last two fights, we must consider how compromised he is. If he doesn’t have the chin to eat Hendricks’s left hand, then he could be hitting the canvas pretty early. However, we also can’t forget about how he might make Hendricks fall just as hard.
Few can withstand Lombard’s aggressive swarms, but if they do, it often leaves Lombard with an empty gas tank. Luckily, he has other options by way of his takedowns and judo game. Coming off of two losses, I have to think Lombard is going to approach this fight tactically, and make sure he conserves his energy.
Hendricks is a very odd case. We saw his scary knockout power early on in his UFC career, which helped him rise up and capture the welterweight title. Since then, he has been surpassed, and doesn’t seem to have evolved. His wrestling is still quite solid, but I have little faith he will be able to use it effectively against the bigger, stronger Lombard.
Pick: Lombard via decision
Lombard should be able to ragdoll Hendricks as long as he doesn’t get overly aggressive and leave his gas tanky empty. There’s always the chance Hendricks can recover his power and plant a left hand on Lombard, but +130 isn’t enough to convince me. Lombard seems like a relatively safe pick.
Thanks for reading! Stay tuned for more UFC news.
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