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MMA Straight Betting

MMA Betting: How Straight Bets Work

By Loot, Boxing Handicapper, Lootmeister.com

With the great majority of MMA fights taking place over the 3-round distance, straight betting is by far the most popular form of wagering in this sport. Exotic bets, like prop bets, over/unders, and the like are not in play like they are in boxing wagering. In MMA, it basically comes down to who you think is going to win. When there is a super-fight, the betting options can increase. But for the most part, your job as a bettor is to simply pick a winner. And in that case, you will be dealing with “money lines.”

Explaining the Money Line

You will see the two fighters listed, each with a corresponding number that explains to you what the odds are. At first, it’s a bit tricky for the rookie bettor to break down these figures. But don’t be dissuaded. Once you grasp the money line, you’ll wonder why you ever struggled with it in the first place.

Let’s work with an example:

Cain Velasquez -140
Junior dos Santos +110

Here’s a hard and fast rule: The minus sign always means that fighter is a favorite. The plus sign always means that fighter is an underdog. Velasquez was favored, while dos Santos was an underdog. So what do the numbers mean?

Cain Velasquez -140: With a minus sign (-), that means you must bet that amount in order to win $100. So to win $100 on Velasquez, you must bet $140. If you were out to win $50, you would bet $70. Just remember that when you see that (-) sign, that is the amount you must bet to win $100.

Junior dos Santos +110: With a plus (+) sign, that means you stand to win that amount if you bet $100. So if you bet $100 and dos Santos wins, you earn a profit of $110. Let’s use a more extreme example.

Jon Jones -500
Rashad Evans +300

The minus sign shows that Jones is a favorite, with the plus sign designating Evans as the underdog. Jones, a high-flying fighter at the moment, is a strong favorite. At -500, you must wager $500 in order to win $100. For every five you put down, you stand to win only one. But if you bet $100 on Evans and he wins, you win $300. And of course, as is the case with all winning wagers, you receive back the amount you wagered.

Review:

Minus sign means a favorite. The number is how much you must bet in order to win $100.

Plus sign means an underdog. That’s number is how much you win if you wager $100.

Other Considerations:

Draws are far more common in boxing, but not unheard of in MMA. In the event of a draw, everybody receives their bet back. But if the book offered a draw wager, both sides lose. It’s unusual to see a draw option in MMA betting. But with the growing popularity of the sport, look for the betting options to increase. And when that happens, keep your eye out for the draw bet.

Remember that when the ring announcer declares the winner, that is binding. Certain things can happen that throw that result into a different light, like scoring errors or positive drug tests. But if you’re on the losing side of the bet, don’t expect those factors to render your losing bet into a winning wager. The book already paid the winning bets and there’s nothing that can come up later that will make them pay both sides of the bet.

There is no safeguard against scandalous decisions. The entire arena can think one guy won and if the judges pick the wrong fighter--there is no recourse. The next day, a tape can surface where the judges are receiving cash payouts and you’re still bound to the result uttered by the ring announcer the prior night. You can be mad about it, but there is nothing you can do. So if a judge makes a mistake or if the fighter you bet against tests positive--you’re out of luck. The best place to bet on UFC sites is Bovada Sportsbook. They have the most wagering options and offer one of the best signup bonuses on the web! (Free Money!)

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