There was some buzz that the betting lines for last night’s Ultimate Fight Night: Teixeira vs. Bader were a little uncharitable.
Particularly, the story went, for the night’s co-main and main event.
In the co-main, Yushin Okami was a pick-em fight for many fans, but the middleweight mainstay was a +265 underdog. Many fans thought he could impose his slow power game on Ronaldo “Jacaré” Souza, pushing the jiu-jitsu world champion around in the clinch and scoring with his ground-and-pound. His supporters pointed to the fact that Okami had never lost via submission.
The main event saw even longer odds for Ryan Bader. Despite being picked by some fans to score the win against Glover Teixeira, including a memorable monologue from Chael Sonnen in the pre-fight show, the former All-American was listed at +350. Sonnen would point to how drained Teixeira looked at Tuesday’s weigh-in, and how the bouts five round duration could favor Bader.
It looked like a good day to beat the odds makers.
Well, it wasn’t. The odds makers were right. Big time. In less than a round, “Jacaré” knocked Okami senseless with a right hand and beat him down from knee-on-belly position until referee stepped in.
Teixeira had a few uncomfortable moments, but — similarly — landed a big right hand-left hook counter to send Bader to the canvas where he followed up with punches for the win.
Here are the odds for each bout, with a quick analysis of that happened:
Marcos Vinicius (+240)
Ali Bagautinov (-280)
Bagautinov was dominant standing here. Vinicius acquitted himself well in groundwork but was out-gunned and eventually stopped in round three.
Rafael Natal (-260)
Tor Troeng (+220)
Natal and Troeng combined for some memorable ground exchanges, with Natal coming out on top. He also scored two knockdowns off right hands. The unanimous decision went Natal’s way.
Francisco Trinaldo (-320)
Piotr Hallmann (+260)
Here was the night’s only upset. Trinaldo got off to a good start, dropping Hallman with a kick to the body, but tired out by the middle of the second. Hallman’s striking began to get through and he’d snare Trinaldo’s arm in a Kimura for the submission win at 3:50 of round two. I’m not familiar with either; while Hallman may have been underrated going into this bout, it would seem Trinaldo’s lack of conditioning came into play.
Joseph Benavidez (-525)
Jussier Formiga (+415)
Benavidez dominates from start to finish with his always-improving striking, eventually dropping Formiga with a knee to the body. Punches followed and earned the Team Alpha Male rep a round one T/KO.
Yushin Okami (+225)
Ronaldo “Jacare” Souza (-265)
A totally dominant performance by “Jacaré” who looks every bit the title contender he has been hyped as. Okami beats all but the best — “Jacaré” is clearly among the best. I’d wager he’s a fight away from a title shot.
Glover Teixeira (-440)
Ryan Bader (+350)
Teixeira concerns me with how much he gets hit, and Bader had him reeling early. But a quick combination changed everything. With the victory, Teixeira has been announced as the next opponent for the winner of the light heavyweight championship bout between Jon Jones and Alexander Gustafsson. When Teixeira implied some disappointment in his performance in his post-fight interview, I think it’s because he knows he’ll need a different performance to take home the gold.