After a two week hiatus, the UFC is back this week from Dallas, Texas for UFC 211. Many times we see the UFC hype a fight card and say “one of the greatest fight card” they have put together but this is legitimately an amazing card. My hat goes out to UFC match makers Sean Shelby and Mick Maynard for putting this thing together. It could definitely go down as one of the best cards ever made and seen inside the Octagon!
This week, we could pick literally 10 fights that we like but we are going to limit ourselves with 3 plays. Since we like so many plays this week, we are going to give out our best play in the Spooky Express Newsletter. So, with that being said, if you are not already receiving the Spooky Express Newsletter, head on over and sign up NOW!
Without any more hesitation, let’s jump right in and find some winners for UFC 211!
Eddie Alvarez vs. Dustin Poirier
Eddie Alvarez is coming into this fight off the biggest fight of his career. In his last fight, he faced Conor McGregor and lost by 2nd round TKO. In that fight, he was rocked early in the first round and never seemed to recover. Alvarez is known for having a granite chin but Conor tagged him on the chin and Alvarez simply never turned it around. He is now 28-5 overall and 3-2 in the UFC. The former Bellator Lightweight Champ will be looking to return to his previous form and get back to his winning ways.
Dustin Poirier is 5-2 in his last 7 fights, with his two losses coming by way of KO to Michael Johnson and Conor McGregor, both in the 1st round. Poirier is coming into this fight off a 3 round majority decision win over veteran Jim Miller.
Eddie Alvarez is much better than what he showed in his last fight vs Conor McGregor. He openly admitted that he didn’t stick to the gameplan and it cost him massively. He is a very good striker that gets inside on his opponents and works the dirty boxing. Poirier has shown he can be “chinny” and has a tendency to drop his hands after throwing strikes. If he drops his hands in this fight, he will be laying down early looking up at the lights. I think Eddie drops him early in the 2nd round.
Pick: Eddie Alvarez +105 for 3 Units
Frankie Edgar vs. Yair Rodriguez
Frankie Edgar comes into this fight off a 3 round decision victory against Jeremy Stephens after Stephens called Edgar out in a post fight conference at UFC Fight Night 88. Now, Edgar will take on Yair Rodriguez, who also called Frankie out and specifically asked for this fight. Many people are looking past Frankie Edgar and looking at him as a stepping stone but that is a HUGE mistake. Edgar is 21-5-1 overall and has never been stopped inside the cage. His 5 losses come by decision and only to 3 people, Jose Aldo, Benson Henderson and Gray Maynard. Frankie is a tough durable fighter that is the product of striking coach Mark Henry. Edgar is an in and out striker that has great foot movement. He is an outstanding wrestler and can cause major issues for Yair Rodriguez.
Yair Rodriguez is 10-1 overall and has never lost inside the octagon, with a UFC record of 6-0. Rodriguez was the winner of TUF Latin America Season 1 and now trains out of Jackson-Winkeljohn Gym. Rodriguez is a talented up and coming featherweight but the question remains if he is in over his head in this one. His last fight, he KO’d BJ Penn, who realistically shouldn’t have been in his last 3 fights. The fight before BJ, Rodriguez took on Alex Caceres, who many felt won the fight.
This fight is simple to me. Look at Frankie Edgar’s quality of opponent compared to Yair Rodriguez quality of opponent and the choice should be easy to pick. Frankie Edgar has NEVER been finished in a fight and to outpoint Frankie Edgar, you are going to have to catch up to him. Many greats haven’t been able to do that and I don’t think that Rodriguez will defeat the odds here. Frankie Edgar will win this fight by a decision.
Pick: Frankie Edgar -135 for 3 Units
Jared Gordon vs. Michel Quinones
Jared Gordon will be making his UFC debut and this play is special to me. As many of you may or may not be aware, Gordon is a close personal friend of mine from my previous employment as a General Manager on the regional MMA circuit and a very special person, in and outside of the cage. Google his name and you will see stories on how this kid has defeated the odds and overcome most things in life that most could not even think of. In my eyes, he is already a champion in life….now he is on his pursuit to become a champion inside the octagon. Gordon was signed by Dana White from his show “Looking for a Fight” back on February 18, 2017 against Bill Algeo for the regional promotion Cage Fury Fighting Championships. Gordon is a very talented striker that is just as dangerous on the ground. Gordon is 10-1 overall and has the potential to go very far in the UFC.
Michel Quinones is 8-1 and will also be making his UFC debut. Quinones was originally scheduled to make his UFC debut at UFC Fight Night 104 on February 19 against Alexander Volkanovski but he was injured and forced to pull out. He is coming into this fight on a 5 fight win streak, 4 of which were finishes. His only loss comes against Bellator vet Brandon Girtz at Bellator 80.
Let me first start by saying this is not a fan based or fanboy selection. I have many friends in the UFC and you don’t see me giving them out as handicap selections because betting with your heart will leave you heartbroken and poor! This pick is different. Jared Gordon is a special talent that you just don’t see every day. He has something that most fighters in the UFC can only dream of and that is a heart the size of the state he will be fighting in, Texas! The kid won’t give up, he will keep fighting and he will get the win here at UFC 211.
Pick: Jared Gordon -155 for 5 Uni