UFC 195: Lawler vs. Condit Beat Down

Welcome back to a New Year’s edition of the UFC Beat Down! This is quite an intense card to begin 2016 and it should be a great event for DFS.

There are seven fights on this card with an over/under of 1.5 rounds, which means Vegas expects a ton of finishes. If you’re entering large field tournaments, I think it’s a great strategy this week to leave money on the table, especially when you consider some of the fighters we’ll talk about in Part 2.

Below is the latest episode of The Daily Fantasy MMA Podcast:

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I also wanted to give a quick shout out to those who sent DK an email regarding interest in an MMA Live Final. I’m hopeful that DraftKings takes it into consideration and puts one out later this year. If you are interested but haven’t contacted DraftKings, feel free to send them a quick email to support and let them know your opinion!

Onto the fights!


Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit

Fight Odds: Lawler -110, Condit -110
Odds to finish: -115
Salaries: Lawler 9.8k, Condit 9.6k
Weight Class: 170

Let’s consider ourselves lucky that we get such a great fight so early into the new year. Robbie Lawler vs. Carlos Condit is being promoted as a violent masterpiece of sorts because that’s what it is.

Both fighters are tough, experienced, intelligent and talented, and the matchup between them is stylistic bliss. Lawler is an extremely well-rounded boxer with takedown defense and aggression, and his striking has become technically strong. He’ll choose to keep the fight on the feet and stand and bang with his opponents.

Condit usually employs a similar gameplan in order to keep the fight standing, and while his takedown defense isn’t elite, he’s a very aggressive submission grappler from his back, and he’s tough as nails to finish.

I believe Lawler’s takedown defense is strong enough that Condit wouldn’t be able to take him down, even if he wanted too. Condit’s defense is much more weak, but I don’t see Lawler choosing to get the fight on the mat either, which means were likely to see as many rounds on the feet on these two can handle.

From a DFS perspective, although this fight is tough to call, both fighters are near must plays this weekend. Both are priced below 10k, and with the amount of significant strikes that should be landed, both have extremely high floors. The winner is likely to get close to or exceed 100 points even in a decision, and because of that, I highly reccomend targeting one in all formats.

I’m certainly not confident in this pick but I like Condit to edge out a decision. He’s shown to be stronger at sticking to and executing a gameplan, and I think his speed and footwork might give him the slight defensive advantage. Even though Lawler may have the pure power edge, I think Condit is a bit more versatile with his striking game. It should be a close fight and it wouldn’t shock me to see both win rounds, but I like Condit to edge out a decision and take the title.

Fight Prediction: Condit by Decision

Stipe Miocic vs. Andrei Arlovski

Fight Odds: Miocic -230, Arlovski +190
Odds to finish: -165
Salaries: Miocic 10.5k, Arlovski 8.9k
Weight Class: HW

Everybody was all-aboard the Andrei Arlovski hype train after his consecutive knock outs of Bigfoot Silva and Travis Browne, but his fight against Frank Mir derailed that train in what was one of the worst fights of the year.

Now he gets a bout against Stipe Miocic where I expect him to be even more exposed, assuming Miocic comes in with a wrestling-approached gameplan.

Miocic is one of the top contenders in the division and his well-rounded wrestling game is one of the main reasons why. I expect Miocic to try and grind Arlovski down and get the fight on the mat where he’ll be at a clear advantage. But when the fight is on the feet, Miocic strikes at a higher volume than Arlovski, and I think he can win the fight there too. Of course, we’ve seen Arlovski’s power and while the fight is on the feet, Miocic will be in some danger, but I trust him enough to avoid the power shots of Arlovski and earn the win.

From a DFS perspective, I think the best option is Miocic in tournaments. I expect Arlovski to be semi-popular because of his knockout potential, but it’s just not an outcome I’m confident in and I think there are better value plays at the bottom. I also think there are more likely favorites than Miocic to earn a finish, but he’s still a fine option nonetheless.

Fight Prediction: Miocic by Decision

Lorenz Larkin vs. Albert Tumenov

Fight Odds: Tumenov -240, Larkin +200
Odds to finish: -195
Salaries: Tumenov 10.1k, Larkin 9.3k
Weight Class: 170

Both Lorenz Larkin and Albert Tumenov are coming off impressive knockout victories in their most recent fights, and another KO here would push them closer to a contending status. Larkin looked dominant in his 2nd round TKO against the aggressive kickboxer in Santiago Ponzinibbio, while Tumenov put the tough and heavy hitter Alan Jouban to sleep in the first round.

Larkin and Tumenov have very similar records and I think this great matchmaking from the UFC. Each carry 16 professional wins to their name, with Larkin scoring 10 wins by TKO to Tumenov’s 11. Neither have a submission victory.

As good of a matchup as this is on paper, it’s also a great one to target in DFS, as it should be a stand-up war with finishing potential. Tumenov has never been knocked out in his career, and Larkin has only suffered one TKO defeat to Costas Phillippou, but with how hard these fighters throw, it’s likely that we see this fight end in a knockout.

At the very least, the winner of this fight will win the stand-up battle and that alone should score a high number of points. My money is on Tumenov. He’s shown incredibly technical and diverse striking inside the Octagon, and he’s done it against a wide variety of opponents. More importantly, his defense has proven to be a bit stronger, and when it comes down to throwing hands, I’m taking the guy who should get hit less.

I also like the fact that Tumenov has very strong kicks, especially high kicks, and it provides an extra layer of attack that Larkin will have to worry about. Both fighters should get hit in this fight, but I see Tumenov holding the slight edge, and I expect him to by decision or TKO.

For his price of only 10.1k, I think Tumenov is very viable in cash games and a great play in GPPs. I think Larkin is also viable in tournaments, but because he’s dropped significantly down to +200, I’d avoid him in cash games.

Fight Prediction: Tumenov by TKO, RD 2

Diego Brandao vs. Brian Ortega

Fight Odds: Ortega -230, Brandao +190
Odds to finish: -165
Salaries: Ortega 10.3k, Brandao 9.1k
Weight Class: 145

Diego Brandao always brings excitement to the Octagon but this fight against Brian Ortega is a very difficult one to analyze. Ortega comes in as a very moderate favorite, and I must admit, I’m a bit surprised.

I don’t think Brandao is a top 5 contender in the division and I do respect Ortega’s skills, but -230 seems a bit high to me and I wouldn’t be shocked if it creeped closer to -200. Brandao is mostly known as a one-round fighter and I think fight hinges on that aspect, because if Brandao has a full gas tank for three rounds, I think he’ll make life difficult for Ortega.

Ortega’s best assets come on the ground, specifically when he’s on his back. He’s a very talented submission grappler and his Triangle is one of the best in MMA, but his overall jiu-jitsu high-level and I think he’s capable of slicing through a tired Brandao. He’s coming off a very tough fight with Thiago Tavares where he won by TKO in the third round, and it was clear from that bout that HIS gas tank is there.

His wrestling, however, is sub-par, and I think it’s a good place for Brandao to take advantage of, even if he is putting himself in the line of fire. I think the stand-up will be relatively equal, with Brando having the edge in the first round based on aggression, and Ortega gaining the edge as the rounds progress.

From a DFS perspective, I think it’s a fight worth targeting in tournaments, but it won’t be one of my highest exposure fights. Brandao doesn’t have a very high finish prop at only +402, but we’ve seen he’s capable of quick finishes, and I still think he’s worth a look. If he can’t get a quick KO, he’s still capable of winning if he can get the fight to the ground and avoid Ortega’s submission threats.

Ortega has a solid inside distance prop at +115 and I think he’s worth targeting in tournaments, but if he finishes, I expect it to be late. I don’t see him overpowering Brandao in the first round, but if Brandao gets tired, I can see Ortega coming on strong late and earning a submission finish.

Fight Prediction: Ortega by RNC, RD 3

Abel Trujillo vs. Tony Sims

Fight Odds: Sims -125, Trujillo +105
Odds to finish: -215
Salaries: Trujillo 10k, Sims 9.4k
Weight Class: 155

This fight between Abel Trujillo and Tony Sims is one of many candidates for Fight of the Night and it’s certainly one to target for DFS purposes.

Trujillo is one of the heaviest hitters at 155, and although he’s struggled in his past two fights, the matchup with Sims is one he’s capable of succeeding in. Sims is a high-level technical boxer and unlike Trujillo’s previous opponents, Sims will want to keep this matchup on the feet.

Trujillo opened as a -135 favorite but the fight has since dropped to an even bet, and I think that’s a more realistic line. We’ve seen Trujillo earn some devastating KO’s in the UFC, but he doesn’t bring much besides his power striking, and he’s facing an opponent who should be able to outclass him defensively.

Only priced at 9.4k, Sims is a value this weekend and he’s a strong play in all formats. Vegas tagged this fight with a line of -260 to end in a finish, and because of that, I think Trujillo is a strong play in tournaments as well. And although the line is even, Vegas still thinks Trujillo is the more likely of the two to win by finish, which adds to his tournament value.

With other big names on the card, this is a fight that could potentially be under-owned, but I’ll have heavy exposure to it in GPPs.

Fight Prediction: Sims by TKO, RD 2

About the Author

  • Brett Appley (bbbomb)

  • One of the top MMA minds in the DFS industry, Brett Appley a.k.a bbbomb has been writing his weekly “Beat Down” article for RotoGrinders since the sport launched on DraftKings in 2015. Brett has earned multiple Top 10 rankings in MMA since that time and has taken down a handful of tournaments as well.


  • saulgoodman

    • 226

      RG Overall Ranking

    Would you play both Condit and Lawler in a cash lineup?

  • bbbomb

    • Blogger of the Month

    @saulgoodman said...

    Would you play both Condit and Lawler in a cash lineup?


  • EricF

    When is part 2 coming out for this card?

  • bbbomb

    • Blogger of the Month

    Here is part 2: https://rotogrinders.com/articles/ufc-195-lawler-vs-condit-beat-down-part-2-1077601

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