The UFC is back this weekend with Fight Night 77 in Sao Paulo, Brazil. The card is headlined by a rubber match between Dan Henderson and Vitor Belfort. Their first two encounters were split one apiece with Henderson getting the better of Vitor via UD back at Pride 32 in 2006 and Vitor murdering Hendo in the first round back when they headlined FN 32 in November of 2013. The rest of the card is filled with fun fights with Thomas Almeida taking on Anthony Birchak and Glover Teixera facing Pat Cummins on the main card. To get you ready for the fights on Saturday, we’ve got your regular Kountermove breakdown including two picks I like and a fight I’m staying away from. Before we get down to business, here’s a reminder from the founders of the site on how KM works and how fights are scored for anyone who’s new to the game:
“About Kountermove. Kountermove, Inc. is currently the world’s leading Fantasy MMA community. Kountermove is like fantasy football or baseball, but for MMA. Our founders, Aaron Ard and Brian Knapp, are Jiu-jitsu black belts and IBJJF competitors.
Pick your team of 5 fighters. You are given a “salary cap” of $25,000 in fantasy money to spend on drafting your team of fighters you expect to perform well/win.
Each fighter is assigned a price that is reflective of his or her respective odds. For example, in UFC 167: GSP cost $6,000, while Johny Hendricks cost $5,000. Since Hendricks is the underdog, he cost less than GSP.
Score Points and Win. Once the fight card begins, you accumulate points based on how well your picks performed.
Winners are determined by the most points earned – points are awarded: strikes landed, submission attempts, knockdowns, dominant positions, rounds won, and knockout or submission bonuses.
Fight statistics are provided by FightMetric LLC, the UFC’s official stats provider.”
Here are a few extra links to get you accustomed to how the site works and how performances are scored.
Remember this is fantasy sports, so you’re not only trying to pick a winner but someone you think will finish the fight or rack up a ton of points on their way to a decision. Don’t have a Kountermove account? All it takes is about 30 seconds and an email address so don’t panic, you’ve still got time before the fights start.
Here are three quick tips for the event that will hopefully help you make some cash on Saturday:
1. Without a doubt my top pick for the event this weekend is going to be prospect Thomas Almeida ($5,400). Birchak is a tough opponent and is coming in high off of his first round blitzing of Joe Soto but I think Almeida completely rolls here. This should be a great fight for as long as it lasts and I think Birchak will force some competitive moments early on with ‘Thominhas’ eventually finding his range and timing and ending the fight with something violent either late first round or in the second. He’s one of the pricier options on the card but he’s worth it. The aggressive striking output and finish alone will net you a nice amount of points and fitting him in to your team shouldn’t be hard with a number of good cheap options elsewhere on the card.
2. A cheap pick that stands out to be as a really great pick is Pedro Munhoz ($4,800). Munhoz is the more well-rounded fighter while Rivera is predominately a striker, so I see the fight being competitive early on while the fighters are standing. Once the fight hits the mat though it should be all Munhoz, and I’m expecting a submission finish at some point in the second round. For $4,800 he doesn’t give you loads of extra room on your team but he’s still a great pick coming in under the average price tag who should rack up an impressive KM score with the early striking exchanges, his grappling, and a potential finish.
3. An entire fight I’m staying away from on KM for this weekend’s fights in Brazil is the welterweight bout between Gasan Umalatov ($4,500) and Viscardi Andrade ($5,100). There are some really fun fights both on the main card and on the prelims this weekend and this is really not one of them, at least based on recent outings and the way their styles match up. These guys are both extremely durable with lower output so this fight should go to the judges’ scorecards the majority of the time. If this fight plays out how I think it will, you could take both fighters’ scores and it would still be less than some of the other winners on this card.
Good luck this weekend!
Questions? Suggestions? Give me a shout on twitter @BlackEyeBowtie
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