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Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier UFC 226 Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 7/7/18

Cormier vs. Miocic

UFC: Saturday, July 7, 2018 (T-Mobile Arena)

The Line: Miocic -235 / Cormier +195 -- Over/Under: 3.5 See the Latest Odds

TV: PPV

Stipe Miocic and Daniel Cormier fight Saturday during UFC 226 at the T-Mobile Arena.

Stipe Miocic enters this fight with a 18-2 record and has won 72 percent of his fights by knockout. Miocic has won each of his last six fights and is coming off a January win over Francis Ngannou. Miocic is averaging 4.75 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 51.9 percent. Miocic is averaging 2.35 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 37.1 percent. Miocic looks for another monster victory in 2018, as he started off the new year defending his UFC Heavyweight Championship for the third time, setting a record. In the victory as a slight underdog, Miocic landed 200 total strikes and produced six takedowns. It was a victory that really solidified himself as one of the top fighters in the sport pound for pound. Miocic has proven he’s a striking machine who lands volume punches with great accuracy and overwhelming power. Miocic has produced knockouts in six of his last seven wins and four of his last five fights have ended in the first round. Miocic is also a polished wrestler who has produced seven takedowns in his last three fights. Miocic wastes little time throwing haymakers and looks to end things rather quickly, and his confidence should be on cloud nine right now. This will be Miocic’s third career fight in Las Vegas.

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Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier UFC 226 Pick, Preview, Odds, Prediction - 7/7/18

Bob DeChiara-USA TODAY Sports

Daniel Cormier enters this fight with a 20-1 record and has won 45 percent of his fights by knockout. Cormier has won five of his last six fights and is coming off a January win over Volkan Oezdemir. Cormier is averaging 3.84 significant strikes per minute with an accuracy percentage of 49.1 percent. Cormier is averaging 1.89 takedowns with an accuracy percentage of 42 percent. Cormier bounced back nicely from his loss to Jon Jones, as he landed 84 strikes, produced two takedowns and won in a second round knockout. Cormier remains unbeaten when fighting anybody but Bones and has finished five of his last seven victories. Cormier has established himself as one of the toughest fighters in the sport, as few can wrestle with him on the canvas, and three of his last six victories have come by the rear-naked choke. Cormier always feels like he has the advantage if he can execute a takedown due to his deep wrestling background, and he seems to get better the longer the fight drags out. However, like he showed in his last bout, Cormier still has some pop behind those strikes despite being 39 years old. Cormier is a balanced champion who knows how to win, but it’s his wrestling ability and conditioning that puts him in a class of his own within this division. This will be Cormier’s sixth career fight in Las Vegas.  

It’s not often you see Cormier as an underdog, especially at this price. Cormier was a big underdog twice against Bones and lost twice, but he beat Anthony Johnson twice as a small underdog, so he’s 2-1-1 in his last four fights as a dog. It’s tough to ignore the value here. However, Miocic has proven he’s the real deal, as his striking, wrestling, speed and cardio are all up to par to make him the favorite against anybody in this division. He’s earned it. Cormier is getting up there in age and will have his hands full if this fight drags out into the second or third round. 

I give Miocic the edge, but I can’t blame you if you take a value bet on Cormier.

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