Donald Cerrone is an established star and a surefire UFC Hall of Famer. Since 2011, he’s been making the walk to the octagon and delivering some of the most memorable scraps in the promotion’s history. This Saturday will mark his 28th UFC fight – just one fight shy of the record for most bouts with the promotion.
Unfortunately, “Cowboy” is fading. And that’s always tough to watch. Though he’s not exactly washed up at 35, his current 1-3 slide is the worst stretch of his career. What’s worse is that in two of those losses he was murked – especially when Darren Till thrashed and finished him in one round.
Now, the Jackson-Wink product is in a tough spot. He’s a big name, but vulnerable – exactly the type of fight that young guns want to build their names on. This Saturday, it’s Jamaica’s Leon Edwards whose looking to use Cowboy as a springboard to bigger, better things. Fighting hungry beasts 10 years your junior isn’t the way I’d want to spend my middle age, but Cowboy has always been a different sort of animal.
The pairing headlines UFC Fight Night 132 in Singapore, and yes, this is a Fight Pass card. The quality of clashes isn’t gonna be as great, but there’s still some decent tilts to look forward to. The co-main event features Tyson Pedro, a light heavyweight who like Edwards is looking to build his name off an aging contender – in this case it’s former title challenger Ovince St. Preux.
Also on the card is a flyweight matchup between Jessica-Rose Clark and Jessica Eye, two former bantamweights trying to rise up the ranks of the brand new flyweight division. Kicking off the main card action is a welterweight fight between Li Jingliang and Daichi Abe.
While this card isn’t gonna set our MMA loins aflame, you can always come out by betting on the UFC at BookMaker.eu. Let’s get to your best betting options.
Donald Cerrone -210 vs Leon Edwards +175
Fight goes/doesn’t go to decision: +165 / -205
We know what to expect of Cowboy at this point. He’s an awesome kickboxer and a slick submission specialist who can wrestle a bit. Opponents have taken advantage of the fact that he’s a slow starter, and if he gets off to a rocky start, things can go south quickly. But even now, when he’s in rhythm, the dude is a mauler with some of the most beautiful combinations you’ll ever see.
Edwards is still figuring out his fight identity, but we already know that he’s really, really good. A southpaw boxer, the AKA fighter has quickly picked up an excellent wrestling game training alongside the likes of Daniel Cormier and Cain Velasquez. He’s learning to apply his athleticism to MMA, and the result is a current five-fight winning streak and a 7-2 overall UFC record. Scratch one of those losses (his UFC debut), as he should’ve won after getting bashed by a clearly illegal knee.
Our Pick: Edwards to win at -210
This is a hesitant pick, since Cowboy seems to thrive against lower-ranked fighters. But the American has been in so many wars that it’s getting easier to knock him off his game. Edwards won’t be able to overpower him like Till did, but right now being the younger, fresher fighter with a well-rounded toolbox should be enough to get past Cowboy. If he keeps the pressure on Cowboy, Edwards takes the decision.
Ovince St. Preux +105 vs Tyson Pedro -125
Fight goes/doesn’t go to decision: +160 / -195
St. Preux is a lot like Cerrone, as he’s a former title contender whose struggled with consistency and has been bounced out of the top 5. Luckily for him, he’s operating in a thinner division, giving him more opportunities to stay relevant against lesser competition. Though he got dominated in three straight fights, he rebounded with three straight finishes against midcard talent before getting subbed by Ilir Latifi in his most recent fight.
His size and athleticism has always been his strengths, but OSP is fighting an Aussie whose also 6’3” and blessed with speed and agility – Pedro is also nearly a decade younger. The difference between this fight and the main event is that Pedro does not have a complete skillset – he’s a grappling specialist who hits hard, but without a real feel for the standup. That’s a problem against a punisher like OSP.
Our Pick: OSP to win at +105
Pedro’s best bet is take this to the mat, where he can unleash his hellish GSP and activate an excellent top submission game. The problem is that OSP is extremely difficult to take and hold down. There’s always a chance that the sluggish, tentative version of St. Preux shows up, but controlling the standup exchanges from the start should build his confidence.
Jessica-Rose Clark -130 vs Jessica Eye +105
Fight goes/doesn’t go to decision: -435 / +325
Clark is a swarmer who loves to work from the clinch. Eye is a boxer who loves to counterpunch. Something’s gotta give here. Though Clark lands an eye-popping 5.2 strikes per minute, most of these are flurries that serve as an entry to push opponents into the cage.
How Eye responds is key. If she circles out and tags Clark with stinging counter crosses and follow-up punches, this becomes a downhill fight for “Evil”. But if she gets backed into the cage and has to deal with the relentless attack of Clark, she loses this matchup on points.
Our Pick: Eye to win at +105
Clark’s got good takedown stats, but Eye’s defense is stellar in that category. Physically overwhelming opponents works against grapplers, but Eye is a polished striker who will likely patiently plug away at an aggressive fighter. The other pick here is the fight goes to decision prop, as neither has the power nor the grapping to put each other away. The price makes the prop a parlay anchor.
Li Jingliang -340 vs Daichi Abe +270
Fight goes/doesn’t go to decision: -115 / -115
Fun little scrap here. Li fights like a tough guy, walking opponents down and piecing them up with jabs and low kicks. When needed, the Chinese fighter can wrestle too – though it ain’t pretty. He employed some dirty tactics against Jake Matthews in his last fight, so let’s hope he keeps it clean here.
Abe is a former Japanese kickboxing champion, so you know how he’s gonna want this fight to go. If he can bait Li into a sparring match – a definite possibility since Li has no problems throwing down – Abe’s technical striking gives him a clear advantage. If this gets ugly, with Li grinding for takedowns and pounding away from the top, Abe is in for a long night.
Our Pick: Abe to win at +270
This pick is based on the price. Abe’s ‘dog line is too compelling for us to pass up, especially since Li seems to win by out-toughing his enemies. Abe’s kickboxing pedigree and speed advantage serves as an interesting foil to the lumbering Li.
Check out the latest UFC Fight Night 132 betting odds.