UFC 157 will mark a historic organizational first, as the main event will feature the first fight in the Women's Bantamweight division when undefeated champion Ronda Rousey takes on challenger Liz Carmouche. Hidden behind the milestone fight will be one of the most underrated fights of the year, as former champion Lyoto Machida takes on perpetual contender and MMA legend Dan Henderson.
Here's a breakdown of the statistics and odds surrounding the fights to see where value lies in betting UFC 157:
Ronda Rousey (minus-1200) vs. Liz Carmouche (plus-775)
The first female fight in UFC history will present a great opportunity for those looking for value in the lines at UFC 157. For one, anytime there is an unknown quantity, there is naturally a theoretical discrepancy in market pricing. In other words, it will take a while before bettors are able to adequately assess the new division.
Which leads us to perhaps one of the better values of the year, as Carmouche has been priced as a giant plus-775 underdog against Rousey. Historically, the principal holds solid that large underdogs are a good value since anything can take place in an MMA fight. The other thing to consider is that the heavy favoring of Rousey is only being based on a very small sample size of six fights. Though Rousey's six fights -- and six submission finishes in the first round -- are impressive, there is a lot of information still missing in a record this small, especially given that she is so heavily favored.
Also, if you consider Carmouche's history, having gained five out of her eight wins by KO/TKO, the chance of her catching Rousey at some point in this fight isn't that unlikely. Though most fans will be expecting another quick submission by Rousey, she'll first have to get past the strong stand-up skills of Carmouche, who's producing 4.35 strikes landed per minute (SLpM) compared to just 1.87 for Rousey. The counterpoint is that Rousey is very efficient at taking opponents down, with a huge 11.69 takedowns per 15 minutes. But Carmouche does possess a respectable 60 percent takedown defense, potentially keeping this fight standing for longer than Rousey would like. With Rousey being a much larger favorite than is warranted -- possibly due to name recognition and mainstream exposure in a lesser-known division -- consider Carmouche a great bet for a potential giant payoff.
Insider's value pick: