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    09/07/2011 10:47 PM
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UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir Fight Predictions, Odds and Start Time

UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir
takes place tonight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada. The pay-per-view event, which is scheduled for a 10:00pm ET start time, features a battle for the UFC Heavyweight Championship between current strap holder Junior “Cigano” dos Santos and former champ Frank Mir. Also on this evening’s MMA docket is a heavyweight scrap between former title holder Cain Velazquez and UFC newcomer Antonio “Bigfoot” Silva. UFC Odds have dos Santos listed as a heavy -500 favorite in tonight’s main event. UFC fight predictions are favoring Velazquez (-400), Roy Nelson (-225), Stipe Miocic (-170), and Stefan Struve (-135) in tonight’s all-heavyweight main card.

Junior dos Santos, a 28 year old heavyweight out of Salvador, Bahia, Brazil, has proven himself one of the most dangerous men on the planet in short order. The Team Nogueira product owns a 14-1 professional record and he is undefeated since joining the UFC in October of 2008.

The man they call “Cigano” has carved out an 8-0 record inside the Octagon, beating top name opponents like Cain Velasquez, Shane Carwin, Roy Nelson, and Stefan Struve. In earning the championship belt last November, dos Santos handed Velasquez the first loss of his career while garnering his fifth UFC knockout.

Frank Mir, a veteran of 15 UFC fights (the most for heavyweight) and two-time UFC Heavyweight Champion, comes into tonight’s meeting with dos Santos riding a three fight win streak. Mir last entered the cage in December when he broke the arm of dos Santos’ mentor, Minotauro Nogueira, in the first round. 

Prior to defeating Big Nog, Mir, a Brazilian jiu-jitsu black belt, scored a unanimous decision victory of Roy Nelson (May 2011) and a third round TKO of the legendary but well past his prime Mirko Cro Cop (September 2010).

Mir, while well deserving of another shot at the heavyweight belt, is taking the place of Alistair Overeem in tonight’s main event. The hulking Overeem, a former Strikeforce heavyweight champion, was slated to face dos Santos after destroying Brock Lesnar via a first round TKO last December. However, the 32 year old Dutchman tested positive for elevated testosterone levels in April and was subsequently suspended (nine months) by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.

UFC Fight Predictions: Dos Santos is the better striker of these two, but Mir has also proven himself capable with his hands. Both fighters are BJJ black belts, but most in the business would tell you Mir, who has earned nine of his 16 career wins by submission, is more dangerous on the ground. Based upon dos Santos record and his unflappable cage presence, though; he is the choice in tonight’s fight. Mir has been broken before by heavy pressure (i.e. Shane Carwin, second Lesnar fight) and dos Santos will apply plenty of it this evening. That said, at +350 odds, I like Mir better from a wagering standpoint. The fight game is unpredictable and Mir has more than enough tools to surprise dos Santos and earn an upset win (few want to risk $500 to win $100). Given that, if you are keen on dos Santos, you might want to parlay him with Velasquez and Nelson, both of which I see winning tonight.

My potential upset winners on tonight’s card: Mir (+350), Lavar Johnson (+105), C.B. Dollaway (+120), Duane Ludwig (+100), and Daniel Pineda (+100).

UFC Odds:
Junior dos Santos -500 vs. Frank Mir +350
Cain Velasquez -400 vs. Antonio Silva +300
Roy Nelson -225 vs. Dave Herman +175
Stipe Miocic -170 vs. Shane del Rosario +140
Stefan Struve -135 vs. Lavar Johnson +105
Edson Barboza -550 vs. Jamie Varner +375
Diego Brandao -280 vs. Darren Elkins +220
Jason Miller -150 vs. C.B. Dollaway +120
Dan Hardy -130 vs. Duane Ludwig +100
Jacob Volkmann -200 vs. Paul Sass +160
Glover Teixeira -230 vs. Kyle Kingsbury +180
Mike Brown -130 vs. Daniel Pineda +100

Movie UFC 146: Dos Santos vs. Mir Pre Fight Presser Highlights: Headliners Junior dos Santos and Frank Mir discuss knockouts vs. submissions, using the UFC® heavyweight championship belt as a pillow, language barriers and more at the UFC® 146 pre-fight press conference.