UFC 128 Betting Preview: Jones vs. Shogun. By Richard Gardner :
Most mixed martial arts fighters think they are unbeatable and talk brashly heading into a big match. But you won’t find that for Saturday’s main bout at UFC 128 at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.
Jon “Bones” Jones and Mauricio “Shogun” Rua face off for the light heavyweight championship and Jones is currently the -205 betting favorite at Bodog. Yet both fighters say the opponent should be the favorite, not themselves.
The fact that I'm the favorite, I think that's baloney Jones said on a media call. I think the reason that I'm the favorite is oddsmakers are very smart and they probably think I'm going to lose.”
Rua, the titleholder, said much the same thing.
I actually understand that people think he's the favorite for the fight because he has been winning all his fights easily Rua said. I certainly think he is rightfully the favorite for the fight. I understand why people think that and how they view that, and I truly consider myself the underdog
Jones (12-1) is the favorite despite the fact he will be fighting for the second time in just six weeks. Back on Feb. 5 at UFC 126, Jones scored a submission victory over Ryan Bader. Against Rua, Jones replaces No. 1 contender Rashad Evans, his teammate, who suffered a knee injury. Jones, who has a strong wrestling background and unorthodox striking style, was dominant in beating Bader for his third consecutive win inside the Octagon. His lone defeat was a controversial one, as Jones was disqualified against Matt Hamill at “The Ultimate Fighter 10” finale for using illegal elbow strikes.
Rua (19-4) hasn’t fought since a very impressive victory over Lyoto The Dragon Machida at UFC 113 last May. Rua avenged a controversial decision loss to Machida at UFC 104, knocking the previously undefeated Machida unconscious with a flurry of punches while both were on the ground. Rua is one of the more aggressive fighters in the UFC, as noted by his 16 career knockouts. He has had such a long layoff because he is recovering from knee surgery.
The majority of the early betting action on this fight was on the favored Jones, which moved his line from an open of -155 to where it is now. The highest line in the bout was Jones at -215, but then the book saw big action on Rua at +175 to +165, where he is now. Jones has been the betting favorite in his last four bouts. At age 23, he is the fourth-youngest competitor in UFC history to get a title shot. And the youngsters don’t have a great track record. John Alessio, BJ Penn and Georges St-Pierre were a combined 0-3 in title fights also at age 23. At current, the book is exposed on Jones, who has more than 54 percent of the total lean thus far.
Rua has been the betting underdog in his last three bouts, including at +175 against Machida at UFC 113. But champions in main card events entering a UFC bout as an underdog have won the past two occurrences.<
This card lost its second-biggest bout when Yoshihiro Akiyama pulled out due to the earthquake and tsunami devastation in his native Japan. Dan Miller, a New Jersey native, now will fight Nate Marquardt in Akiyama’s place. Miller's brother Jim is also on the card against Kamal Shalorus. The two previously fought on the same night at UFC 124; this is the first time two siblings will both appear on the main card. Bet On UFC 128 Now. USA Bettors Welcome.