OddsTrader helps MMA fans like you put some money in the Octagon with your favorite fighters. Keep up with live UFC odds, or continue reading below to learn how UFC odds work, and the different types of bets you can place. This guide to UFC odds can help you see how you will help build your bankroll.
Johnny Munoz Jr
Betting sites from across the globe have witnessed a rapid uptrend in the popularity of mixed martial arts. The unprecedented growth of MMA is continuously rising, with active fighters such as Israel Adesanya, Suga Sean O’Malley, Islam Makhachev, Paddy Pimblett, and many more of the world’s favorite fighters continue drawing significant attention to the sport.
It’s expected that the future of combat sports will fall into the hands of professional MMA. With consecutive fights held every week, a massive fan base worldwide, and a style of fighting that excels beyond pro boxing, it’s difficult to argue that MMA is slowly becoming the most popular prize-fighting sport worldwide.
Sports wagering operators and the UFC have long worked closely to provide fans with an avenue to bet on fights, and nobody does it better than the UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship. Whether you’re looking to wager on a title fight or the first preliminary bout of an event, you can rest assured that the most prominent bookmakers will have available betting lines for 10-15 fights every weekend.
UFC President Dana White built his MMA promotion from the ground up. And now, 29 years into the combat sports business, the UFC is the world’s largest and most-watched MMA promotion format.
The company produces events worldwide, 3-4 times per month, with a marquee pay-per-view event occurring every 4-5 weeks. They showcase 12 weight divisions (eight men’s, four women’s) and adhere to the Unified Rules of Mixed Martial Arts.
Under the guidance of Dana White, the UFC has evolved into a multi-billion-dollar enterprise.
Regarding UFC betting at the sportsbooks, reading the available odds and understanding the essential practices of MMA wagering is simple.
Betting sites will release their UFC odds across multiple markets (Moneyline, Prop Bets, Totals) one or two weeks before the scheduled event. However, as the UFC schedule has evolved, you can sometimes find available odds months in advance, depending on the importance of the event and how large the event coverage is.
So long as you’ve created a sportsbook account, you’ll have access to a plethora of UFC betting markets. And if you don’t have an account, creating one is a simple process.
Most UFC handicappers will begin their research by evaluating the favorites and underdogs. This process involves studying the competing fighters, coming to a conclusion based on their career fights, and coming to a conclusion about what their betting price should be. If the oddsmakers have a similar price available to what you believe holds betting value, this is where you should place a bet.
Understanding the implied probability of a fight is essential in knowing if your research matches the expected outcome. You’ll then see whether it’s worth backing the favorite or the underdog. To distinguish the difference between a favorite and an underdog at a sports betting site, you will find a minus sign (-) next to the favorite and a plus sign (+) next to the underdog.
Most UFC fighting odds are presented in the American format, rather than decimal and fractional formats.
Similar to other major sports betting markets such as the NFL, NBA, NHL, or MLB. The moneyline wager in UFC is when the bettor predicts an outright winner.
You’ll be presented with two options, the favorite and the underdog. As previously mentioned, you can distinguish the favorite as he’ll have a (-) symbol next to his name when using the American odds format, and the underdog will have a (+) alongside his name.
If the UFC lightweight champion Islam Makhachev is the UFC betting favorite in a hypothetical matchup versus Alexander Volkanovski, you may see favorable odds of -150. This would require a $150 stake to win $100. On the other hand, Volkanovski would be the underdog with potential odds of +130. The underdog odds are naturally more lucrative as you’re moneyline betting on the fighter expected to lose (according to the oddsmaker’s opinion). A $100 stake on the moneyline odds for Volkanovski would return $130.
Over/Under total rounds betting doesn’t differ much from other sports, but the “.5” you see in UFC betting totals represents half a round (2 minutes 30 seconds) rather than points.
If you wager on over 2.5 rounds, the fight doesn’t need to go three full rounds to win the bet. It would only need to cross the halfway point of the last round, as the 2.5 equals 12 minutes 30 seconds, and an entire three-round bout is 15 minutes per fight.
Total rounds markets will change for a championship or main event fights. These contests contain five rounds in total, thus giving the over/under bettor more time to work with. UFC totals markets can provide over/under 1.5, 2.5, 3.5, and 4.5.
Alternatively, you can wager on the fight going the full three or five rounds or ending via stoppage within the allotted time – known as ‘fight going the distance’ or ‘fight doesn’t go the distance.’
UFC contests have three potential paths to a fight completion: Fighter A wins by decision, by knockout/TKO/DQ, or wins by submission. This is another betting opportunity for UFC fans.
Knockout and submission victories are referred to as Fighter A winning inside the distance and regularly provide lucrative fight odds compared to other prop betting markets.
As the popularity of UFC is at an all-time high, most sportsbooks will offer these types of bets along with obscure prop betting markets like point spreads, predicting the number of strikes thrown or the number of takedowns landed on fight night.
The UFC fan base loves to discuss potential future matchups. Depending on the current trajectory of particular fights, sportsbooks will also release betting odds months in advance when a potential rivalry is lined up. These future bets are strong picks for a bettor’s bankroll, as the variables surrounding the anticipated fight of the future can change during the lead-up to the official fight night.
Suppose the UFC lightweight champion wants to move up a weight class and challenge for the welterweight title after his next title defense. In that case, sportsbooks will catch on and deliver early betting options for this bout – despite the fact it hasn’t officially been announced.
Is betting on UFC odds legal?
Yes, betting on UFC fights is legal in the United States. However, as no one set of laws regulates sports betting in the country, each state presents its own rules and regulations. Depending on your state, different betting markets could be available to you with DraftKings Sportsbook, or FanDuel Sportsbook.
What does underdog mean in UFC?
An underdog is a fighter that is expected to lose their fight based on the probability taken from the moneyline odds.
How often do underdogs win in the UFC?
Underdogs have a favorable fight outcome at a significantly higher rate when compared to team sports. After combing through a comprehensive event archive, with a sample size taken from 27th Apr 2013 and November 2022, it was found that 1462 fighters won when the fight odds weren’t in their favor.
We don’t recommend abandoning all of your other betting strategies, though.
Is it better to bet live or before the fight?
Pre-fight wagers are the best approach when sports fans are confident in a fighter’s ability. However, live betting is the wiser option when two fighters own similar skill sets and overall potential for success and there is no clear favorite pick.
How accurate are UFC odds?
UFC odds priced between -400 and -900 are incredibly accurate, with an 88-93% win rate since 2013. However, fighting odds between +100 and -122 have only landed at 51%.