Strikeforce Challengers VIII

You don’t have to wait for UFC 114 next weekend to bet on MMA. Friday night, the latest Strikeforce event hits the airways with Strikeforce Challengers VIII.

The main event on the Friday night Strikeforce card is a middleweight bout between MMA veteran Matt Lindland and up-and-coming fighter Kevin Casey. Lindland, a former Olympic silver medalist in Greco Roman wrestling enters the fight with a 21-7 record with seven wins by knockout and seven by submission.

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Things haven’t gone Lindland’s way in his last two appearances in the steel cage after two straight losses. His last fight at Strikeforce:

Evolution in December was against Ronaldo Souza. He lost by submission in the first round after Souza locked on an arm-triangle choke. Casey is fairly new to the MMA professional ranks and has only four pro MMA fight under his belt.

He lost his first pro bout, but has won three in a row to stand at 3-1 with two wins by submission. He last fought at Strikeforce Challengers VI in November. He took down Chad Vance midway through the first round after applying a rear-naked choke. As usual, the odds makers have gone with the more experienced fighter and have listed Lindland as a heavy favorite.

At sportsbooks such as Bovada , Lindland is a -450 odds favorite in Friday’s fight, while Casey is a +275 odds underdog. Also on the Friday night fight card is a welterweight bout between Tyron Woodley and Nathan Coy. Woodley is heavily favored in the bout at -450 after starting his MMA career a perfect 5-0. Woodley has proven to be quite a submission specialist as all five of his fights have ended by submission and they’ve all ended rather quickly.

He last fought at Strikeforce Challengers VI in November when he defeated Ruby Bears by submission in the opening round with an arm-triangle choke. Coy is on a three-fight winning streak and boasts a lifetime MMA record of 8-2. He last fought in March at a Sportfight event where he easily defeated Travis Bush by submission due to strikes in the first round. Despite Coy’s winning streak he’s still a +275 underdog against the unbeaten Woodley.

Strikeforce Challengers VIII odds courtesy of Bovada:

Middleweight:

Matt Lindland -450 Kevin Casey +275

Welterweight:

Tyron Woodley -450 Nathan Coy +275

Welterweight:

Roger Bowling -450 Bobby Voelker +275

Welterweight:

Brian Travers -135 Pat Healy -105

Lightweight

Tarec Saffiedine -190 Nate Moore +145

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