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UFC 150 breakdown, betting odds and picks

Bettors siding with Ben Henderson over Frankie Edgar

Image

Johnny Hanson / AP

Frankie “The Answer” Edgar, right, walks away after knocking out Gray “The Bully” Maynard in the fourth round during the UFC 136 lightweight title bout, Saturday, Oct. 8, 2011, in Houston.

Public opinion has increasingly shifted away from former UFC lightweight champion Frankie Edgar as UFC 150 nears.

Several sports books opened Edgar as a +130 (risking $1 to win $1.30) underdog in his rematch with Ben Henderson, a -150 favorite, only to see money on the champion drive the number higher.

At William Hill sports books, Henderson is up to -180 chalk with Edgar coming back at +160. The Las Vegas Sun picks panel agrees with the movement.

Four of five prognosticators like Henderson to defend his championship belt for the first time at UFC 150, scheduled for 7 p.m. Saturday at the Pepsi Center in Denver on pay-per-view.

Check below for a breakdown, betting odds and picks on every fight by Las Vegas Sun’s Case Keefer (62-48 year to date), ESPN Radio’s Steve Cofield (69-41), ESPN.com’s Brett Okamoto (66-44), KSNV’s Kevin West (65-45) and Las Vegas Sun’s Ray Brewer (53-57). Main card odds are courtesy of William Hill sports books, while the undercard lines come from the offshore consensus.

Frankie Edgar

  • Age: 30
  • Height: 5’6''
  • Weight: 154.5
  • UFC record 9-2-1
  • MMA record 14-2-1
  • Out of: Toms River, N.J.
  • Betting line: +160

Ben Henderson

  • Age: 28
  • Height: 5’9''
  • Weight: 156
  • UFC record 4-0
  • MMA record 15-2
  • Out of: Glendale, Ariz.
  • Betting line: -180

Lightweight Championship Bout

Main Event

Last fight: Lost to Ben Henderson by unanimous decision at UFC 144.

Punch list: No matter what happens in the rematch with Henderson, this looks like it could be a defining moment in Edgar’s career. “The Answer’s” legend will grow tenfold if he bounces back and regains the belt from “Bendo”. If not, it’s more likely than ever before that Edgar will find himself cutting to the 145-pound weight class.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Henderson

Cofield: Henderson

Last fight: Beat Frankie Edgar by unanimous decision at UFC 144.

Punch list: Henderson says his ultimate goal is to surpass middleweight champion Anderson Silva’s record for title defenses. Since Silva is currently at 10 and still chugging along, that’s a tall task — especially in a division as stacked as lightweight. But there would be no better way to start it than by defeating a former champion who’s universally respected for the heart he’s shown repeatedly in the octagon.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Edgar

Brewer: Henderson

Okamoto: Henderson

Melvin Guillard

  • Age: 29
  • Height: 5’9”
  • Weight: 155
  • UFC record 11-6
  • MMA record 30-10-2
  • Out of: Boca Raton, Fla.
  • Betting line: +240

Donald Cerrone

  • Age: 34
  • Height: 5’9''
  • Weight: 156
  • UFC record 5-1
  • MMA record 18-4
  • Out of: Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Betting line: -280

Lightweight Bout

Co-Main Event

Last fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Fabricio Camoes at UFC 148.

Punch list: Silencing the “haters” is part of Guillard’s motivation for this fight. Many have panned his decision to leave Greg Jackson’s team for the Blackzilians in South Florida. Guillard has gone only 1-2 since the change of scenery and hasn’t shown as much power. But he says he’s better than ever, and beating a standout former teammate would prove it.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Guillard

Cofield: Guillard

Last fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Jeremy Stephens at UFC on FUEL TV 3.

Punch list: Out of respect to Guillard, Cerrone hasn’t trained under longtime coach Greg Jackson leading up to this fight. But Jackson, who trained both Guillard and Cerrone as recently as last year, will serve in “Cowboy’s” corner the night of the bout. Cerrone wanted to fight in his home state badly and expressed extreme gratitude to Guillard for accepting the matchup on short notice.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Cerrone

Brewer: Guillard

Okamoto: Cerrone

Ed Herman

  • Age: 31
  • Height: 6’2’’
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 7-5
  • MMA record 20-7
  • Out of: Fort Collins, Colo.
  • Betting line: +160

Jake Shields

  • Age: 33
  • Height: 6’0’’
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 2-2
  • MMA record 27-6-1
  • Out of: San Francisco
  • Betting line: -180

Middleweight Bout

Featured Contest

Last fight: Second-round submission victory over Clifford Starks at UFC 143.

Punch list: “Short Fuse” is one win away from reaching the upper echelon of the 185-pound division. Sounds stunning considering where “The Ultimate Fighter” 3 veteran was a year-and-a-half ago. He hadn’t fought in two years and was coming off of 1-3 stretch. But Herman managed to live up to fighter speak of “feeling stronger than ever” with three straight wins.

Staff picks:KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Shields

Cofield: Herman

Last fight: Defeated Yoshihiro Akiyama by unanimous decision at UFC 144.

Punch list: He’s undersized in the 185-pound division, but far from overmatched. Shields returns to middleweight after a 2-2 start to his UFC career in the welterweight class. He famously held the middleweight title in Strikeforce two years ago, capturing it by beating Jason “Mayhem” Miller and defending it in a stunning upset over Dan Henderson.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Shields

Brewer: Shields

Okamoto: Shields

Buddy Roberts

  • Age: 29
  • Height: 6’2''
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 1-0
  • MMA record 12-2
  • Out of: Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Betting line: +400

Yushin Okami

  • Age: 31
  • Height: 6’2''
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 10-4
  • MMA record 27-7
  • Out of: Kangawa, Japan
  • Betting line: -600

Middleweight Bout

Pay-Per-View Bout

Last fight: Unanimous-decision victory over Caio Magalhaes.

Punch list: This is the kind of opportunity a UFC newcomer dreams about. Roberts was supposed to face Chris Camozzi, but jumped at the chance to move up and meet one of the sport’s most decorated middleweights. Okami is by far the most notable opponent Roberts has ever encountered. It’s going to take a flawless performance to improve his win streak to seven.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Okami

Cofield: Okami

Last fight: Third-round TKO loss to Tim Boetsch at UFC 144.

Punch list: After losing only once in four years, Okami has now dropped two straight. Another loss here would be particularly devastating. Okami had a scheduled bout with Rousimar Palhares for this card, but injury forced “Toquinho” out. In Roberts, Okami receives a less experienced opponent. But that means a loss would affect him all the more negatively.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Okami

Brewer: Okami

Okamoto: Okami

Max Holloway

  • Age: 20
  • Height: 5’11’’
  • Weight: 145
  • UFC record 1-1
  • MMA record 5-1
  • Out of: Waianae, Hawaii
  • Betting line: -105

Justin Lawrence

  • Age: 22
  • Height: 5’8’’
  • Weight: 156
  • UFC record 1-0
  • MMA record 4-0
  • Out of: Los Angeles
  • Betting line: -115

Featherweight Bout

Pay-Per-View Opener

Last fight: Defeated by Pat Schilling by unanimous decision at “The Ultimate Fighter Live” finale.

Punch list: Quick feet, fast hands and crisp overall striking reads the scouting report on the Hawaiian who’s not even old enough to buy alcohol. He’s still coming along in the wrestling and grappling departments, but more than makes up for it with his striking. Just ask Schilling, who Holloway beat to a pulp when they met at the Palms.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Lawrence

Cofield: Lawrence

Last fight: Knocked out John Cofer in the third round at “The Ultimate Fighter Live” finale.

Punch list: “The Ultimate Fighter Live” alum trains alongside Anderson Silva at Team Blackhouse. He showed flashes of the same creativity as “The Spider” with the head-kick knockout of Cofer and a demolition of Cristiano Marcello while on the show. He’ll have a definite power advantage, but might have trouble tracking the speedy Holloway down.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Lawrence

Brewer: Holloway

Okamoto: Lawrence

Tommy Hayden

  • Age: 26
  • Height: 5’9’’
  • Weight: 155
  • UFC record 0-1
  • MMA record 8-1
  • Out of: Cincinnati
  • Betting line: +250

Dennis Bermudez

  • Age: 25
  • Height: 5’6’’
  • Weight: 145
  • UFC record 1-1
  • MMA record 8-3
  • Out of: Lindenhurst, N.Y.
  • Betting line: -350

Featherweight Bout

FX Prelim

Last fight: Submitted by Fabricio Camoes in the first round at UFC on FX 1.

Punch list: When thinking of MMA in Cincinnati, the first names that come to mind are former UFC champion Rich Franklin and jiu-jitsu coach Jorge Gurgel. Hayden has spent time training with both of the standouts. Whether he can duplicated their success in the octagon remains to be seen, as Hayden likely needs to win this fight to keep his job.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Bermudez

Cofield: Bermudez

Last fight: Unanimous-decision win over Pablo Garza at UFC on FOX 3.

Punch list: Consistency is the only thing holding Bermudez back from becoming a possible dark horse contender in the 145-pound division. He came into MMA with a strong wrestling base and has supplemented it with the necessary striking and grappling. He showed off the full package in the fight with Garza, but had lost three official bouts — not counting his time on “The Ultimate Fighter” Live — before that.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Bermudez

Brewer: Bermudez

Okamoto: Bermudez

Michael Kuiper

  • Age: 23
  • Height: 6’1’’
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 0-1
  • MMA record 11-1
  • Out of: Helmond, The Netherlands
  • Betting line: -115

Jared Hamman

  • Age: 30
  • Height: 6’3’’
  • Weight: 185
  • UFC record 2-3
  • MMA record 13-4
  • Out of: El Segundo, Calif.
  • Betting line: -115

Middleweight Bout

FX Prelim

Last fight: Unanimous-decision loss to Rafael Natal at UFC 143.

Punch list: It’s time to find out how the judoka reacts to the first loss of his career, always a tricky proposition for fighters. Kuiper’s resume shows plenty of promise. He’s spent time training in Las Vegas, holds a black belt in judo and has won at least one notable grappling tournament.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Kuiper

Cofield: Hamman

Last fight: First-round knockout loss to Constantinos Philippou at UFC 140.

Punch list: Hamman’s chin betrayed him in his last fight — a recurring problem for the UFC veteran. He can dish out some punishment with his strikes, but has more trouble taking it. “The Messenger” has alternated wins and losses since securing a UFC contract in late 2009. Only two fights in his entire professional career have gone to the scorecards.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Hamman

Brewer: Kuiper

Okamoto: Hamman

Erik Perez

  • Age: 22
  • Height: 5’8’’
  • Weight: 134
  • UFC record 1-0
  • MMA record 11-4
  • Out of: Albuquerque, N.M.
  • Betting line: -105

Ken Stone

  • Age: 29
  • Height: 5’8’’
  • Weight: 135
  • UFC record 2-1
  • MMA record 11-3
  • Out of: Coconut Creek, Fla.
  • Betting line: -125

Bantamweight Bout

FX Prelim

Last fight: First-round submission victory over John Albert at “The Ultimate Fighter Live” finale.

Punch list: Young and exciting, “Goyito” could become a staple in the bantamweight division for years to come. He’s known for his dedication after first fighting to “stay out of trouble.” Perez worked several odd jobs in Mexico before turning professional, including stints as a carpenter and tortilla-company employee.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Perez

Cofield: Stone

Last fight: Beat Dustin Pague by split decision at UFC on FX 4.

Punch list: Since joining American Top Team, Stone has made significant strides to his overall game. He was always a strong grappler, but now has a striking game that’s developing to the point where it’s not a weakness. He’ll feel comfortable fighting Perez anywhere, but probably has the biggest advantage on the ground.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Stone

Brewer: Perez

Okamoto: Stone

Chico Camus

  • Age: 27
  • Height: 5’6”
  • Weight: 135
  • UFC record 0-0
  • MMA record 11-3
  • Out of: Milwaukee
  • Betting line: +150

Dustin Pague

  • Age: 24
  • Height: 5’9’’
  • Weight: 135
  • UFC record 1-2
  • MMA record 11-6
  • Out of: Centreville, Va.
  • Betting line: -180

Bantamweight Bout

FX Prelim

Last fight: Won a unanimous decision over Alptekin Ozkilic at Legends of Fighting Championship 52.

Punch list: The UFC newcomer started fighting because of his good friend Anthony Pettis, a lightweight contender. With instruction from Pettis and renowned coach Duke Roufus, “King” quickly caught on to the striking parts of MMA. The rest of his game is also up to par, which lead him to his debut in the world’s top promotion.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Camus

Cofield: Pague

Last fight: Split-decision loss to Ken Stone at UFC on FX 4.

Punch list: Pague is the UFC’s busiest fighter of the summer. “The Ultimate Fighter” 14 veteran competes for the third time in two months at UFC 150. He’s known for his technical striking, but his first win in the UFC and last on “TUF” came by submission.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Camus

Brewer: Camus

Okamoto: Pague

Eiji Mitsuoka

  • Age: 36
  • Height: 5’7’’
  • Weight: 154
  • UFC record 0-1
  • MMA record 18-8-2
  • Out of: Tokyo
  • Betting line: +240

Nik Lentz

  • Age: 27
  • Height: 5’8’’
  • Weight: 156
  • UFC record 5-2-1
  • MMA record 21-5-2
  • Out of: Eden Prarie, Minn.
  • Betting line: -300

Featherweight Bout

Facebook Prelim

Last fight: Second-round TKO loss to Takanori Gomi at UFC 144.

Punch list: Challenging your home country’s most prolific fighter is no easy task in a UFC debut. But Mitsuoka actually held his own against former PRIDE champion Gomi for more than a round when everything went awry. The Sengoku veteran drops to featherweight for his sophomore affair in the octagon, looking to stick in the premier MMA organization after a successful 11-year career elsewhere.

Staff picks: KSNV and ESPN Radio

West: Lentz

Cofield: Lentz

Last fight: Second-round TKO loss to Evan Dunham at UFC on FOX 2.

Punch list: “The Carny” has stayed extremely active during his three-year stint in the UFC. It’s been only seven months since his last fight, but that’s the longest layoff of his career so far. Lentz needed the time to prepare for his drop to a smaller weight class and to heal from the numerous cuts and bruises lingering after the Dunham meeting.

Staff picks: Las Vegas Sun and ESPN.com

Keefer: Lentz

Brewer: Lentz

Okamoto: Lentz

Case Keefer can be reached at 948-2790 or [email protected]. Follow Case on Twitter at twitter.com/casekeefer.

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