Tim Elliott’s chances to upset “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 14 winner John Dodson fall somewhere between slim and none, according to players in the Sherdog.com MMA Pick’Em fantasy game.
A staggering 95 percent of them expect Dodson to defeat the surging newcomer in their preliminary flyweight bout at UFC on Fox 3 “Diaz vs. Miller” on Saturday at the Izod Center in East Rutherford, N.J. No other fighter on the 12-bout lineup has greater support from the masses.
Dodson (12-5, 1-0 UFC) will carry a three-fight winning streak into the cage. The 27-year-old Jackson’s Mixed Martial Arts representative last appeared at “The Ultimate Fighter 14” Finale in December, when he stopped Team Alpha Male’s T.J. Dillashaw on first-round punches at the Palms Casino Resort in Las Vegas. One of the sport’s most gifted offensive fighters, Dodson has secured seven of his 12 professional victories by knockout, technical knockout or submission.
A late replacement for Darren Uyenoyama, Elliott (8-2-1, 0-0 UFC) has rattled off eight wins in a row. The 25-year-old Oklahoman last competed under the Resurrection Fighting Alliance banner in March, when he needed just 28 seconds to render Josh Rave unconscious with a brabo choke. Elliott has finished his last four opponents, three of them inside one round.
Other Sherdog Pick’Em trends for the UFC on Fox 3 prelims:
• Nearly nine out of 10 users (89 percent) have picked “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 13 winner Tony Ferguson to take care of business against “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 12 runner-up Michael Johnson at 155 pounds. Ferguson has won six in a row and remains unbeaten inside the Octagon;
• Englishman John Hathaway has strong support in his welterweight showdown with the undefeated Pascal Krauss, having secured 88 percent of the vote from fantasy players;
• Eight out of 10 participants believe Team Alpha Male’s Danny Castillo will slow the rise of once-beaten Renzo Gracie protégé John Cholish. The 28-year-old Cholish will enter the Octagon on a streak of eight consecutive victories;
• Despite his failure to make weight for his promotional debut, former Jungle Fight champion John Lineker has been tapped as a strong favorite (69 percent) in his flyweight tilt with the world-ranked Louis Gaudinot. Lineker, who weighed in at 127 pounds and was fined as a result, has won his past 13 fights, seven of them finishes;
• Pablo Garza will enter his featherweight bout with “The Ultimate Fighter” Season 14 finalist Dennis Bermudez as the man to beat, according to 67 percent of players;
• Six out of 10 participants foresee another Nick Denis victory in his bantamweight battle with Roland Delorme. Denis dazzled in his promotional debut at UFC on FX 1 in January, as he wiped out Joseph Sandoval with a series of savage standing elbows in just 22 seconds;
• New Jersey native Mike Massenzio will walk into his 185-pound duel with Karlos Vemola as a slight favorite, with the backing of 53 percent of users.