A Basic Guide To Online MMA Betting

Mixed Martial Arts used to be relatively unknown to mainstream audiences back in the early nineties, but the success of the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) allowed this exciting combat sport to gain a widespread following over the past decade. This, of course, spawned a lot of online sports betting opportunities headlined by UFC betting.

Most high-profile online sports betting sites started offering UFC betting lines in the late nineties and have since then expanded their event coverage by including other organizations and even some regional fight night events. Nowadays, online betting on UFC fight nights is as simple as betting on NBA basketball or any other popular sport.

Much like in the case of boxing, UFC online betting options range from simple options such as picking the winner of the fight, the method of victory, and which round the fight will be decided in.

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online mma betting

Online MMA Betting Guide

There are four main types of wager you can come across in the world of MMA betting.

Moneyline: Who will win the fight?

A moneyline bet is an option you will see at every sportsbook. You are simply betting on which fighter will win. For example, Conor McGregor was favored at -325 to beat Donald Cerrone, who comes in a +250 underdog. In this UFC online betting scenario for McGregor, you would win $30.77 on a $100 bet if he wins. For Cerrone, you would win $250 on a bet of $100 if he were to win.

The symbols will tell you who the favorite and underdog is. A positive symbol means that fighter is the underdog and a negative symbol if for the favorite.

Over/Under: How many rounds will the fight go?

An over/under wager in MMA betting means you are betting on the number of rounds a fight will go. A fight might have an over/under of 2.5 for a three-round fight. You would bet on whether you think the fight will end before halfway through the final round, or if it will go beyond that. Remember, there are also five-round fights, so keep that in mind.

Online MMA Betting Types
  • Moneylines
  • Over/Under
  • Parlay
  • Props

Parlay: Making multiple bets

Parlays mean you are betting multiple wagers on one ticket. You might bet the moneyline on two fights, but take the over/under in another fight. However, you would have to hit on all three wagers to collect on the whole ticket. If one of those wagers does not hit, then the ticket is toast. Parlays offer a higher payout than individual bets because the risk in much higher.

Online MMA Betting Props: For Entertainment Purposes

There can be any number of betting props available to MMA bettors. For example, you might want to bet on the way a fight ends, such as KO/TKO, submission, or a decision. You could even bet for a draw to happen, but the odds are very long for that result as it doesn’t happen often.

Online MMA Betting: Organizations

Of course, when you talk about MMA, you have to start with The Ultimate Fighting Championship, better known as the UFC. Most MMA fans learn how to bet on UFC fights. Based out of Las Vegas, Nevada, the UFC is the biggest MMA organization in the world, in terms of fighters and the amount of attention they bring to the sport. It began in 1993 and as of spring 2020, they will have 250 pay-per-views.

However, there are more organizations than just the UFC. Bellator MMA is based out of Newport Beach in California, and they can also claim to have some big names on their roster, most of whom also fought in the UFC. Then there is also ONE Championship, based in Singapore, and Rizin, which comes to you from Japan. Invicta FC is an all-female MMA organization that is based in North Carolina, while Cage Warriors is headquartered in England.

There are tons of smaller local organizations, but these are the names that you will likely see at the sportsbook when you are going to bet on MMA.

Online MMA Betting: Fighting Styles

There’s a saying in combat sports that “styles make fights”. This means you have to take into account what styles are being used when two fighters get together for a matchup. MMA is so much more than two people punching each other in the face – many fighters have a style they start with, but the best MMA fighters learn and take from other styles as well. Here are the styles you’re likely to see when getting into MMA betting.

MMA Fighting Style Description
Boxing Boxing is the striking foundation for many fighters over various weight classes. Not only are its varied punches a good offense, but it teaches head movement in terms of avoiding strikes. An example of a strong boxer in MMA is Junior Dos Santos, a former UFC heavyweight champion.
Kickboxing/Muay Thai These disciplines are also a good foundation for striking, but also incorporates the use of legs, knees, and elbows. Anderson Silva is a good example of a fighter that uses Muay Thai.
Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu Royce Gracie used Brazilian jiu-jitsu to win UFC 1, 2 and 4 against larger opponents. BJJ uses leverage to grapple your opponent to the mat, and then use submissions. Demian Maia is known as one of the best BJJ artist competing in UFC.
Wrestling Wrestling is another ground-based style in which fighters can take opponents down with single or double-leg takedowns, and then control them on the mat. This is when ground-and-pound comes into play. Georges St. Pierre was an excellent example of wrestling in the UFC.
Judo Judo’s biggest weapon is the throw, which fighters can use as a takedown. From there, they can use ground-and-pound or submissions to control the match. Ronda Rousey, who was also an Olympic medalist, used judo for her foundation.
Karate Karate is a striking style, but grappling and throws can also be used. But it is primarily about striking, and former UFC light-heavyweight champion Lyoto Machida is a great example for karate.
Taekwondo Taekwondo artists are usually good with kicks, and many of them are flashy compared to kickboxing. Think of former UFC lightweight champion, Anthony Pettis as a taekwondo example.
Sambo Sambo is a combination of judo and wrestling, in which throws, grappling and striking are all used. Fedor Emilianenko is the most famous sambo fighter.

MMA Betting Glossary

MMA Betting Term Definition
Slip / Ticket another word for bet slip in which your wager is printed on
Method of victory a MMA bet where you pick how you think the fight will end, be it knockout, technical knockout, etc
Unanimous decision all judges on their scorecards believed the same fighter won the fight
Technical draw when a ref stops the fight before the start of the final round that isn’t KO, TKO or disqualification
Technical decision when judges based on their scorecards pick one fighter the winner of the event
Technical Knockout / TKO when a fighter is knocked down 3x or a ref believes the fighter can longer continue and/or protect themselves
Split decision when two of three judges’ scorecards declare one fighter the winner, while the third believes the other won the fight
Juice / Vig is another term for cost of placing a bet and is easier to show an example than define. When you look at a moneyline bet on an oddsboard, it’ll look something like: Bills -125 Jets +120
Prop / Proposition Bet – these typically have to do with a certain player or team achieving a certain goal threshold within an event. An example of a prop bet would be Todd Gurley OVER/UNDER 65 rushing yards against the Seahawks.
Majority Decision when a fighter scores MORE points than his opponent on two cards, while both fighters score evenly on the third judge’s scorecard
Moneyline just like in team sports, moneyline is a straight up bet on who you believe will win with the favorite noted by a minus symbol and underdog a plus symbol (i.e. Jon Jones -415 vs Dominick Reyes +350)
Chalk the fighter who was a heavy favorite won their fight
Draw when a fight ends in a tie, the wager is a PUSH
Edge what every MMA bettor is looking for, an advantage over the sportsbook that others may not see when placing a bet – this could be an injury or private news event that occured
Tilting when you start betting with uncontrollable emotion

Online MMA Betting FAQs