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Free UFC Picks – UFC 120 Lines

UFC 120 Preview & Picks

If you like brawls, you should tune in to UFC 120 on free TV this Saturday and place some bets. The event, which takes place in England, features some feisty sluggers in its main matchups. Here are some picks for the top fights on the card.

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Event: UFC 120: Bisping vs. Akiyama
Date: October 16, 2010
Time: 10PM ET/7PM PT
Location: O2 Arena, London, England
Broadcast: Spike TV (tape-delay)

Here are my picks for the top two fights on Saturday – both of which are very important.

Michael Bisping (19-3) vs Yoshihiro Akiyama (13-2, 2 NC)

UFC 120 odds: Bisping -210, Akiyama +175

Ever since Dan Henderson took his head off at UFC 100, Michael Bisping has become one of MMA’s most predictable fighters – and that’s good news for bettors.

Bisping is a fairly well-rounded fighter. He’s a decent grappler, good at escaping bad positions, and he’s a good boxer. But the Henderson knockout loss made him extremely gun-shy. The book on Bisping is out: aggressive fighters who walk forward can have their way with him now whereas more tentative types will give him time to get comfortable and score points.

Look at Bisping’s last three fights. His two wins came against Dan Miller, a guy with no standup skills or knockout power, and the underwhelming Denis Kang. His loss came to the extremely aggressive Wanderlei Silva, who pushed the pace and had him running scared the entire bout.

I think Yoshiro Akiyama is a bad matchup for Bisping. The Japanese star has fought twice in the UFC and both bouts were wild. He battled through a broken orbital bone to beat Alan Belcher and he lost in a wild, punch-drunk war with Leben. Akiyama can match Bisping in the standup or on the ground and he’s the more courageous fighter to boot.

Look for Bisping, who already told the media he was nervous, to come out tentative at home. He’ll fight “not to lose” and wind up losing as a result.

Pick: Akiyama +175

Dan Hardy (23-7, 1 NC) vs Carlos Condit (25-5)

UFC 120 odds: Hardy -175, Condit +145

Give Dan Hardy credit for being a great self-promoter. Unless you count a second-tier guy like Marcus Davis, Hardy only has one big notch on his belt: the win last fall against Mike Swick that landed him a title shot against Georges St-Pierre.

Aside from that, most of Hardy’s wins have come against inferior competition. Yet he’s managed to make himself a “name” – and a sportsbook favorite – by being one of the sport’s biggest loudmouths. The Brit, complete with red Mohawk, is an expert at getting under opponents’ skin.

But as much as Hardy has made himself a “name,” as tough as he is, as heavy as his hands are, I don’t like him against Carlos Condit this Saturday. Hardy keeps saying that he’ll drop Carlos Condit with a big punch but Condit has never been knocked out in 30 professional fights. In fact, Condit has one of the best chins in the world. I’d put him in the top three or five. The guy has battled through war after war and eaten some unbelievable shots without losing consciousness. He’s a maniac.

So I don’t think Hardy will have the striking advantage he believes he’ll have. Condit can throw; he has 11 knockout wins. On the ground, it’s no contest. Condit is far superior. Thanks to his solid Jiu-Jitsu, he has 13 career submission wins. With Greg Jackson coaching him now, he’ll play to his strengths and exploit Hardy’s weaknesses.

Look for Condit to hang with Hardy just fine on his feet before taking him down and beating him up. As dangerous as both these guys are, I actually expect this fight to go the distance simply because they’re both too tough to tap or get knocked out.

Pick: Condit +145

Official fight card

Preliminary card

Light Heavyweight bout: James McSweeney vs. Fabio Maldonado
Lightweight bout: Spencer Fisher vs. Kurt Warburton
Lightweight bout: Paul Sass vs. Mark Holst
Light Heavyweight bout: Steve Cantwell vs. Stanislav Nedkov
Heavyweight bout: Rob Broughton vs. Vinicius Queiroz
Light Heavyweight bout: Cyrille Diabaté vs. Alexander Gustafsson

Main card

Welterweight bout: James Wilks vs. Claude Patrick
Heavyweight bout: Cheick Kongo vs. Travis Browne
Welterweight bout: John Hathaway vs. Mike Pyle
Welterweight bout: Dan Hardy vs. Carlos Condit
Middleweight bout: Michael Bisping vs. Yoshihiro Akiyama

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About Shea Matthews

Shea Matthews the Senior Writer at CP. Lives and breathes sports. He made the transition from athlete to sports journalist at a young age, writing in TV & national papers. Shea applies his knowledge to sports betting + handicapping daily, and shares winning picks with the world.