UFC 198 MMA DFS Picks
UFC 198 heads to Arena de Baixada in Curitiba, Parana, Brazil and the main event is a heavyweight title bout between Fabricio Werdum and Stipe Miocic. That certainly isn’t the only match fight fans will be anticipating, however. The middleweight bout between Vitor Belfort and Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza will be one to watch, as will be the tussle between Matt Brown and Demian Maya.
For me, personally, I am looking forward to the welterweight fight between Warlley Alves and Bryan Barberena, even though Vegas expects this to be a blowout it should be a lot closer than expected initially before Alves pulls away in front of his countrymen. We’ll also get a look at Cris ‘Cyborg’ Justino and Leslie Smith, and Cyborg is expected to make quick work of her opponent in that match.
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Warlley Alves ($10,800 vs. Bryan Barberena): Alves will have his hands full against Barberena, and you can expect the first round to be an all-out war. However, look for Alves to have an advantage in strength, stamina and he will also be able to feed off the home crowd. He smoked Colby Covington last time out in 86 seconds, and his signature move is the guillotine choke. If Alves can get Barberena onto the ground early, it will be lights out. For Barberena to have any chance, he needs to remain upright against Alves, who is superior on the mat.
Ronaldo ‘Jacare’ Souza ($10,600 vs. Vitor Belfort): ‘Jacare’ (-330) will look to take Belfort down to the mat early and often. He ranks fifth in the middleweight class with 1.68 submission attempts per 15 minutes, and he ranks ninth in the class in takedown accuracy. He will want to avoid a toe-to-toe bout, as Belfort is an above average boxer who is tied for third in the class in knockdowns landed. If Souza can avoid absorbing the big hit and wear down Belfort, it will be a slam-dunk win for Jacare. He is way more fit than his counterpart, and that will play a role in this bout, too, if it goes into the second round and beyond.
Patrick Cummins ($9,800 vs. Antonio Rogerio Nogueira): Nogueira’s plan of attack is to remain upright and try to turn this into a brawl. He knows Cummins is one of the best on the mat. In fact, Cummins ranks fourth among light heavyweights in takedown attempts, and second in takedown accuracy. Cummins comes in hungry after a KO/TKO loss in Round 2 last time out against Glover Teixeira. That’s what Nogueira wants, too – to keep Cummins upright and wear him down. It won’t happen, though.
Rob Font ($9,700 vs. John Lineker): Font is looking to spoil the homecoming of Lineker
(-175), who is finally healthy after a lengthy layoff. ‘Hands of Stone’ Lineker will look to work over Font, but you can expect the underdog to win the day. The last time Font tasted defeat was back in 2012 before making his UFC debut. Font has also had some difficult staying healthy, and he had his own lengthy layoff before returning at UFC Fight Night Jan. 17 with a win over Joey Gomez. As long as Font can avoid the big hit from Lineker, who has tremendous and powerful punching ability, he is the better technical fighter. As a slight underdog, Font will come through as a No. 4 or 5 DFS option.
Renato ‘Carneiro’ Moicano ($9,000 vs. Zubaira Tukhugov): Carneiro puts his unblemished professional record on the line in front of his countrymen. He had a successful UFC debut at Fight Night 58, taking care of Tom Niinimaki via rear-naked choke. That’s Carneiro’s go-to move, and Tukhugov would be well served to avoid going down to the mat. Tukhugov is unbeaten in three matches since being promoted to the UFC, but two of those three wins were rather uninspiring and went to the judges. He can’t afford that, especially against Carneiro in front of his home fans. Give the edge to Carneiro, who will win this one by unanimous decision. As a low-priced No. 5 roster option, that will be good enough.