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The Ultimate Fighting Championship’s return to Brazil on Saturday went better than anyone could have expected, as nearly all 13 bouts at UFC Fight Night 144 were supremely entertaining. The card featured eight stoppages, many coming from underdogs, and anytime that happens, you know there were some big props to cash. Here are some of the most profitable:
Marlon Moraes Wins via Submission (+1700)
The main event of UFC Fight Night 144 saw Moraes pick up his third straight first-round stoppage win, as he submitted Raphael Assuncao with a guillotine choke. Considering the first fight between these two ended in a split decision that went Assuncao’s way, you can see why bettors were not favoring Moraes to get another stoppage. The prop on Moraes winning by any method in the first round cashed at +600, but the crown jewel of all the Moraes props was his winning by submission, with that prop cashing out at ridiculous +1700 odds.
Jose Aldo Wins in Round 2 (+850)
It seems like back-to-back losses to Max Holloway woke up Aldo, because for the second consecutive appearance, he turned back the clock and looked amazing. After starching Jeremy Stephens in his last outing, he brutalized Renato Carneiro in the co-main event and finished him in the second round with a ridiculous flurry of strikes. The prop on Aldo winning by knockout hit at nice +472 odds, and the prop on his winning in the second round hit at an awesome +850 number.
Markus Perez Wins in Round 2 (+700)
One of the slickest submissions at the event came courtesy of Perez, who tapped UFC newcomer Anthony Hernandez with one of two anaconda chokes on the card; the other was achieved by Charles Oliveira. Perez was the underdog in this fight, and not many expected to see him get his hand raised, especially by finish in the second round. The prop on Perez winning in the second stanza cashed at +700.
Jairzinho Rozenstruik Wins in Round 2 (+800)
The lone heavyweight bout not surprisingly ended with a finish, as Rozenstruik knocked out Junior Albini in the second round with a head kick and follow-up punches. It looked like Albini had a significant advantage on the ground in this fight early on, but Rozenstruik proved tough to submit and then showed off his killer instinct with a brutal knockout in the middle frame. The prop on Rozenstruik winning in the second round cashed at +800 odds.
Said Nurmagomedov Wins via TKO (+1775)
The fight with the craziest props to cash was buried deep on the undercard, as the bantamweight bout between Nurmagomedov and Ricardo Ramos proved quite surprising in the way it played out. Though he was the underdog at the sportsbooks, Nurmagomedov made the fight look easy, blasting Ramos with a spinning back kick and follow-up punches to win by first-round technical knockout. With most of his career wins coming by decision, few saw Nurmagomedov winning by stoppage, and the props on his doing so were available at insane odds. The prop on Nurmagomedov winning in the first round cashed at +1425, but even grander was the prop for his winning by knockout, which hit at incredible +1775 odds.
Adam Martin is a mixed martial arts journalist who has been covering the sport since 2011. He is currently the lead odds analyst for Sherdog.com, as well as the lead staff writer for MMAOddsbreaker.com. Adam is also the co-host of “The Parting Shot Podcast” on iTunes. His favorite fight of all-time is Dan Henderson-Mauricio Rua, and he wishes Pride Fighting Championships never died. Adam is based out of Toronto, and he is a graduate of the University of Toronto and Centennial College. Get in touch with him on Twitter at @MMAdamMartin.