Getting Started in MMA Betting

MMA betting is an exciting and potentially profitable way to wager on fights. But if you’re used to placing wagers on team sports, the sport’s more individual-oriented format may seem confusing at first. Fortunately, there are a few key concepts to understand that will help you get started in this fast-growing form of sports betting.

Choosing the right fighter: When you’re betting on an MMA fight, it’s important to be selective and do your research. Many sportsbooks offer a list of upcoming fights and the promotions that are scheduled to appear on them. Choose the ones that have the best overall value and you feel confident in, rather than simply choosing a big-name fighter or one of the top two seeds in the main event.

Understanding the odds: Unlike football, baseball, basketball, and hockey, MMA is newer to the betting scene. As a result, its odds aren’t finely tuned the same way as those of more established sports. This can lead to a higher variance in the odds for a given fight. Knowing how to read these odds will give you a huge edge over the casual bettor.

The most common type of MMA bet is the moneyline, in which you select which fighter will win the match. The odds for a particular fighter are presented in a standard format, with the favorite indicated by a minus sign (-) and the underdog by a plus sign (+). The odds represent the payout you’ll receive if you make your bet.

Over/Under rounds: Similarly to the over/under in football and basketball, this is a bet on how many total rounds the fight will last. If the over/under is set at 2.5 rounds, for instance, and the fight lasts exactly that number of rounds, you’ll win your bet.

Method of victory: MMA offers a variety of interesting wagers on how a particular fighter will win, including inside the distance (ITD), submission, and knockout. You can also place bets on a specific round, or on whether the fight will end in a draw.

In-play betting: Some MMA sportsbooks allow bettors to place live bets on a fight as it’s happening. This type of MMA betting is exciting and lucrative, as the odds are constantly changing based on what’s happening in the cage. But it’s important to remember that the oddsmakers are only focusing on what’s currently taking place and won’t always consider underlying factors that only experienced MMA bettors would be able to pick up on.

Another thing to consider is that the public often puts more money on a certain side of a bet than they should, especially when betting on a popular favorite or a feel-good story. This can skew the odds and force sportsbooks to adjust them in an attempt to balance the action. Taking the time to study the odds and public perception will help you avoid this trap.