UFC Betting

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UFC 252: Miocic vs. Cormier 3

After a successful tour of Fight Island, the world’s top MMA athletes are back home in Las Vegas, where they’ll spend the month of August duking it out. This month’s featured attraction is UFC 252— a highly-anticipated rubber match between Heavyweight champion Stipe Miocic and challenger Daniel Cormier in the main event. It all goes down at the UFC APEX studio on Saturday, August 15, with the main card on PPV at 10 PM ET, and judging by the MMA betting odds at Bovada Sportsbook, it’s either man’s fight to win.


UFC 252 Odds: Stipe Miocic vs. Daniel Cormier

It’s only fitting that Miocic (19-3 lifetime, 13-3 UFC) and Cormier (22-2, 1 NC lifetime; 11-2, 1 NC UFC) are dead even at –115 on the MMA odds board as we go to press. These are two of the greatest big men in the history of the sport, each with a victory over the other; Cormier drew first blood two years ago at UFC 226 when he knocked Miocic out in the very first round, then Miocic returned the favor last August at UFC 241, taking back the Heavyweight belt via fourth-round TKO.

Cormier may have a hidden advantage for Part Three. The UFC uses a smaller 25-foot Octagon for events at the APEX facility; Miocic tried to get the standard 30-foot Octagon for this fight, but his request was turned down. Those missing five feet should help Cormier press his wrestling advantage in this bout – and keep Miocic pressed up against the cage.


UFC 252 Odds: Junior dos Santos vs. Jairzinho Rozenstruik

There was a time when dos Santos (21-7 lifetime, 15-6 UFC) was the baddest big man on the planet, but that time ended eight years ago when Cain Velasquez took the Heavyweight strap at UFC 155. Dos Santos went on to get two more title shots, against Velasquez and Miocic, and lost them both. “Cigano” has also dropped each of his last two fights via TKO, against Francis Ngannou and Curtis Blaydes.

That’s part of the reason why dos Santos is the +130 underdog on Bovada’s UFC odds board; the other part is his opponent. Rozenstruik (10-1 lifetime, 4-1 UFC) also got knocked out by Ngannou in his most recent fight, but that’s the only time the Suriname native has lost inside the Octagon or anywhere else. KO wins over Alistair Overeem and Andrei Arlovski proved that Rozenstruik can deal with former champions who are past their prime. De Santos definitely falls into that bucket at age 36.


UFC 252 Odds: Sean O’Malley vs. Marlon Vera

And now for something completely different. This Bantamweight bout features two exciting 20-somethings who have earned themselves some serious respect – not to mention all those tasty performance bonuses. O’Malley (12-0 lifetime, 4-0 UFC) is the heavy UFC betting favorite at –315, coming off a big first-round knockout of former WEC champion Eddie Wineland at UFC 250. Vera (15-6-1 lifetime, 9-5 UFC) lost his most recent fight in May to Song Yadong, but there were extenuating circumstances: Vera was supposed to face Wineland in March, then that matchup got postponed, and he and Song ended up fighting at 145 pounds instead of 135. It was still the Fight of the Night.

This one could be as well. Both men are Brazilian jiu-jitsu practitioners who are capable of switching stances and laying in some heavy strikes. O’Malley is three inches taller with a 1.5-inch reach advantage, and hits with more volume than Vera. That could be enough of an advantage to keep “Sugar Sean” undefeated, but otherwise, there won’t be many edges to exploit in this contest.


Other UFC 252 Odds

The main card for UFC 252 is rounded out by a Light Heavyweight rematch between Magomed Ankalaev and Ion Cutelaba. Ankalaev only needed 38 seconds to win their first bout by TKO back in February, and he’s the –305 favorite to get his arm raised again in Las Vegas. But before that, we have John Dodson and Merab Dvalishvili (–200) touching gloves in the Bantamweight division, as Dodson tries to get his career back on track by breaking Dvalishvili’s four-fight win streak.

The rest of the UFC 252 card is still being fleshed out at press time, but ESPN will show the early preliminary fights at 6:15 PM ET, followed by the main prelims at 8 PM. Keep checking back with Bovada Sportsbook for the latest UFC fight odds as they become available, and enjoy the show.


*Odds as of August 9th, 2020


Bet on the UFC



How to Bet on the UFC: UFC Betting Explained

There was a time when boxing was the biggest combat sport in the world. These days, more people are betting on mixed martial arts – especially when it’s the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) putting on the show. This promotion has skyrocketed since its first pay-per-view card in 1993, back when it was no holds barred; new rules and regulations have turned the UFC into a sweet science all its own, allowing the company to spread across the globe. This UFC Betting 101 introduction will show you how to bet on MMA at Bovada Sportsbook, from basic wagers to simple strategies you can use to knock out your competition.

Betting on the UFC

The UFC holds dozens of events every year, with somewhere around a dozen fights on every card. The major events are pay-per-views, and smaller shows are aired on cable television and UFC Fight Pass; each card will feature a main event, often a title fight for one of the promotion’s 12 weight divisions, as well as a co-main event. Here are the different ways you can get in on the UFC betting action:

UFC Moneyline Betting

This has been the standard way to bet on combat sports for well over a century. UFC moneyline odds are a form of fixed-odds betting, where you choose one of the two fighters to win straight-up, no point spread attached. In North America, these odds are typically expressed using the American odds format. To better understand exactly what are UFC moneyline odds, let’s look at the famous August 2016 Welterweight rematch between Conor McGregor and Nate Diaz at UFC 202:

Diaz              +120
McGregor       –150

Unless it’s a pick’em, every fight has a favorite and an underdog. The favorite will always have a negative sign next to their MMA odds; in this matchup, McGregor was the –150 favorite, paying out $100 for every $150 wagered (smaller and larger bets are allowed). The underdog usually has a positive sign next to their odds, although that’s not always the case with two closely matched opponents. In this fight, Diaz was the +120 underdog, paying out $120 for every $100 wagered.


UFC Parlay Betting

A parlay bet is a combination bet that lets you group together a number of individual moneyline wagers. If you get all your picks right, your payout increases exponentially, but if you get a single pick wrong, the parlay loses. You can put anywhere between two and 12 moneyline bets in your UFC parlays. The more lines you add, the higher the potential payout. So how do UFC parlay bets work? Let’s say you wanted to combine the McGregor-Diaz fight at UFC 202 with the co-main event, a Light Heavyweight bout between Anthony “Rumble” Johnson and Glover Teixeira:

Teixeira           +175
Johnson           –225

Here, Johnson was the –225 favorite, while Teixeira was the +175 underdog. If you parlayed Johnson together with McGregor, congratulations: Both favorites won their fights. Betting $50 on each of them separately would have earned you $44.44 in profit, but since you parlayed them instead, you earned $140.74. You can calculate your potential payouts by multiplying the odds for each fight in your parlay, either by hand or with an online parlay calculator. Even better, Bovada Sportsbook will do the math for you when you’re filling out your bet slip.

UFC Futures Betting

If you’ve been stumped trying to figure out just what is a UFC futures bet, we’ve got you covered. In general, the UFC odds for each card will be made available well in advance, but every once in a while, speculative odds will be published for a fight that may or may not take place in the future. This can happen when two really big-name fighters appear to be on a collision course. If there’s enough interest in their potential fight, UFC futures odds will go up on the board. You’ll find them under “UFC Futures” when you open the UFC menu at Bovada Sportsbook.

Betting on UFC futures looks exactly the same as betting on the moneyline. There will be a favorite and an underdog, and the odds for each fighter will adjust depending on how much action they draw. Once their prospective fight is made official, those odds will be taken off the UFC futures board and put on the regular market.

UFC Prop Betting

Aside from the moneyline, UFC prop bets (short for proposition bets) are the most popular way to bet on MMA’s most popular promotion. Rather than picking a straight-up winner, UFC props ask you to wager on things like method of victory (KO/TKO/DQ, submission or decision), and whether the fight will go OVER or UNDER a certain number of rounds.

Much like the Super Bowl, betting on UFC props can be both fun and profitable. The more popular the fight, the more props you’ll have at your disposal; you might be able to bet on whether a fighter will win during a specific round, or whether they’ll win by unanimous decision. Don’t forget to look for these props anytime you’re considering a bet on the UFC.

UFC Betting Tips

Think you know your way around the Octagon better than most people? If you’ve been following the sport for some time, you’ve probably developed a solid base of knowledge that can help you beat the UFC odds. But even if you’re betting on MMA for the first time, you can gain an advantage by remembering two simple rules of thumb:


1. Styles make fights. Every UFC fighter comes from a certain MMA background. Brazilian jiu-jitsu is common, but a well-rounded practitioner will bring other martial arts to the table, be it wrestling, boxing, karate, Muay Thai, sambo, judo, or other forms. Ideally, your chosen fighter will be strong in the two basic elements of MMA: striking, and grappling. They’ll also be strong on both offense and defense. If you see a fighter who’s gifted at ground-and-pound going up against someone who isn’t skilled at defending from underneath, that’s a mismatch that you can take advantage of.

2. The bigger they are, the harder they fall. There are 12 different weight classes in the UFC: eight male, and four female. The lightest division is Women’s Strawweight (up to 115 pounds), and the heaviest is Heavyweight (male, 206-265 pounds). As a rule, the lighter divisions have more of their fights end in decision, while the heavier classes will see more knockouts. You can use this knowledge, combined with the styles and past records of each fighter, to take advantage of the UFC props. For example, a Women’s Strawweight bout will end in a decision roughly 70% of the time; put two defensive strikers in the Octagon together, and a decision becomes even more likely.

Because the UFC has become so popular, detailed biographies of most fighters are available on the internet, showing their MMA backgrounds, which belts they’ve been awarded, and the results for all their previous fights – both in MMA and other combat sports. A little research will go a long way in helping you make sharper UFC picks. In the meantime, you now have everything you need to get started betting on the UFC. For more information, check out the FAQ and Help guide at Bovada Sportsbook, and feel free to contact Customer Service if you need further assistance.


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