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UFC 222 Predictions & Picks: Everyone Pyle On!

Trevor Dueck

by Trevor Dueck in Mixed Martial Arts News

Mar 1, 2018 · 3:21 PM PST

Mike Pyle at weigh-ins
Mike Pyle at weigh ins. Photo by MMAJunkie (YouTube)
  • There is a lot of betting value on UFC 222 (Sat., March 3, 10:00 p.m. ET).
  • Will the extended layoff for both Zingano and Caraway hurt their chances at winning?
  • Can Mike Pyle (+250) finish his career off with a win for bettors?

Due to injury UFC 222 is missing featherweight champ Max Holloway and that’s a damn shame. However, in the co-main event, perennial title contender Frankie Edgar will lock horns with surging Brian Ortega to decide who truly deserves the next shot at Holloway’s gold.

Over on the ladies side of the division, UFC Women’s Featherweight Champion Cris Cyborg returns to action to face UFC newcomer Yana Kunitskaya. Many are asking why is this the main event? I guess the powers that be felt fans could be sold on the joys of watching a lion maul a lamb.

On paper, this looks like a lackluster card but these are the ones that sneak up on you, and if you enjoy betting on mixed martial arts, this card is stacked with potential profit.

Last week we played it safe and went 1-1 but we still came ahead and that’s what we are looking to do this week with our best bets for UFC 222.

"Sugar" Sean O'Malley at TUF 26 Finale.
“Sugar” Sean O’Malley at TUF 26 Finale. Photo by BT Sport MMA (YouTube)

The pay-per-view will cost us around $60, so we’ll need a way to make that money back. Below are three straight bets that are worth taking and we could have easily taken more. Although the odds are juicy on Brian Ortega (+160) and Cat Zingano (+132), we go in a different direction.

BRYAN CARAWAY (+140) vs. CODY STAMANN (-160)

This is a moneyline you quickly want to jump on because there is no way Bryan Caraway (21-7) should be an underdog in this fight.

“Kid Lightning” has been on the sidelines the last couple of years due to injury but let’s not forget about the man’s overall skill set and previous Octagon success. Don’t get me wrong, Cody Stamann (16-1) is no slouch either, he recently upset a top prospect in Tom Duquesnoy at UFC 216, but Caraway will be his toughest opponent to date.

Not only can Caraway push the pace and keep up with Stamann in the grappling department, he also has a 68″ reach advantage in the striking that should allow him to work his range like he did against Eddie Wineland.

The layoff doesn’t concern me. Caraway is just better no matter where this bout goes and he fights at such a grueling pace that Stamann will be stopped.

 

SUGGESTED BET POTENTIAL PAYOUT
$50 on Bryan Caraway (+140) $70 profit

MIKE PYLE (+250) vs. ZAK OTTOW (-300)

It sometimes takes a round or two for Mike Pyle (27-7) to get the gears going, but when he does, look out.

“Quicksand,” as they like to call him, has been apart of some fantastic come from behind victories throughout his career, but recently father time has bashed him on the chin far too often that its clear retirement is the right move.

Don’t underestimate a man [Mike Pyle] who will want to leave it all in the cage for the final fight of his career.

Luckily for him, Zak Ottow (15-5) doesn’t possess a ton of power in his strikes that Pyle should be able to weather the storm and have a vintage performance in his final UFC bout.  Pyle at +240  is something you want to scoop up. Don’t underestimate a man who will want to leave it all in the cage for the final fight of his career.

SUGGESTED BET POTENTIAL PAYOUT
$25 on Mike Pyle  (+250) $62.50 profit

SEAN O’MALLEY (+120) vs. ANDRE SOUKHAMTHATH (-140)

I spoke about this fight on our Combat-A-Thon podcast with Jeremy Brand of MMASucka.com and we both agreed that as reckless as Sean O’Malley (9-0) can look on the feet, he does like to blend in some great takedowns.

This is a matchup where we get to see if the 23-year-old has developed enough fighting IQ at his age to be the highly touted prospect the UFC would really like to build upon.

Andre Soukhamthath (12-5) has that professional boxing background that could spell bad news for O’Malley if he decides to throw caution to the wind. Now is not the time to throw sloppy punches.

O’Malley is the more versatile fighter in this matchup and could easily force Soukhamthath to fight a style he doesn’t want to fight. He’s also the longer and more athletic fighter, which should help with his striking and setting up takedowns.

I like O’Malley to remain undefeated so +120 looks like a solid way to make a bit of a profit with a minimum bet.

SUGGESTED BET POTENTIAL PAYOUT
$25 on Sean O’Malley  (+120) $30 profit

BEST PARLAY PLAY

Lately, we have been conservative with our picks, but throwing a parlay together is still good fun as they can be highly profitable.

As we mentioned above, Cat Zingano (9-2), who is coming off a two-year layoff, would be a bet worth considering. Like Bryan Carraway, have we already forgotten how talented this woman is? So if we are going to put a parlay together, she seems like a good addition.

On the other side of the parlay is John Dodson.

As good as Pedro Munhoz has been on the ground, he is going to have a tough time taking someone like Dodson down (83% takedown defense). Dodson should be able to use his speed and technical striking to pick Munhoz apart on the feet for the win.

SUGGESTED BET ON PARLAY POTENTIAL PAYOUT
$25 on Dodson + Zingano (+268) $67

Have a listen to Combat-A-Thon Radio where we discuss the UFC 222 Main Card.

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