Cormier vs. Johnson UFC 187 Betting Preview


UFC 187

This Saturday features one of the year’s biggest title fight events at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, the light heavyweight championship title fight between Cormier and Johnson. Jon “Bones” Jones was supposed to be the title defender, but after his hit-and-run scandal on April 26, the officials decided to strip him off the title and suspend him indefinitely.

On January 3 this year, Cormier lost to Jones when he contended for his title at UFC 182. The decision by the judges was unanimous and now Cormier has a second chance against a slightly weaker opponent, although a very fierce one. Nevertheless, Daniel Cormier has been installed as the betting favorite (-140) for the UFC 187. The contender is Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and according to the Vegas odds he is a somewhat small underdog at +110.

Before falling to Jones following a drop down to heavyweight, Cormier had gone 2-0 at 205 pounds in the UFC. Prior to that loss the former Strikeforce Grand Prix winners was 15-0 overall in his MMA career. Johnson on the other hand earned his title shot with his unbeaten stints (3-0) in the Titan Fighting Championships and World Series of Fighting which returned him to the UFC. En route to six wins he managed to knockout four opponents.

This will probably be the toughest fight to predict. Cormier will certainly try to get Johnson down to the ground by getting inside on him, but Johnson has some wrestling skills that are very much underrated. He is perhaps the strongest light heavyweight guy in the division. Everybody expects for Cormier to use the same strategy as when he was fighting Jones, which means he will try to get inside and attempt to deliver elbows, knees and many short punches. This strategy was effective against Jones, but Cormier struggled to do that in continuity.

Since Johnson doesn’t possess Jones’ length, Cormier’s strategy will surely be more successful against him. But, Johnson has a very powerful, albeit ridiculous one-punch knockout. It’s like his hand is propelled by a rocket. However, he has had an issue with fatigue. He was known to have problems with his condition, but since he returned to the UFC he seems to be a new man.

If Cormier and Johnson manage to endure going into a fifth round, Cormier will have the bigger chances. However, if Johnson’s domination is successful, Cormier will have troubles lasting full five rounds. Johnson has a real chance to win by KO because of his momentum he has behind him right now and because he is so powerful, but it will be really difficult for him. So, the Vegas odds are as follows: Johnson (+110), Cormier (-140). Who will you choose?

About Matt Lo Cascio

Matt Lo Cascio is the co-founder and editor of Chicago's MMA. He is the former play-by-play announcer for the XFO and other organizations, and he has been published by ESPN.com, DraftKings, The Comeback, FanSided, and more.

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