Interested in betting on the fights but don’t know where to start? Mixed martial arts (MMA) and boxing are really two different sports – they’re both fighting sports, but that’s almost where the similarity ends.
The combat rules are the main difference. In boxing, you can only use punches, and you can only hit above the belt. In MMA, almost anything is fair play. If you’re protecting yourself with your hands up, you’re vulnerable to being wrestled to the ground when an opponent grabs your legs. MMA isn’t just a single form of fighting. The fighters train in various martial arts but hone their skills for the type of fighting that works best in cage matches.
Boxing’s three-knockdown rule doesn’t apply. In MMA, hitting the ground doesn’t stop the fight… you’re fighting until the referee calls the outcome.
The different style of fighting means that MMA fights are more unpredictable and sometimes more vicious. This also means they can be shorter. A typical MMA fight is a maximum of three, five minute rounds. In championship fights, there are five rounds instead of three. In boxing, there’s a maximum of 12, three minute rounds.
You’ll hear lots of people ask which is “better” or more dangerous, but it’s not a fair comparison. While some MMA fighters have excellent boxing skills, the moment the fight moves to the ground, those skills aren’t useful. If I was in a street fight, I’d want an MMA fighter at my back. But it’s impossible not to appreciate the artistry and sheer strength required to be a boxing champion.
After all, who else can “float like a butterfly, sting like a bee” (Muhammad Ali).
Ready to bet on the fights?
MMA fights are typically listed as UFC (Ultimate Fighting Championship) – that’s the organizing league. You’ll see options to bet:
That’s an outright bet on who will win any given fight.
Although fights end in a draw less than 2% of the time, we’ll often have 3-way moneyline markets with the draw as an option. Try your luck!
Over / under rounds
That’s how many rounds you think the fight will last. Remember that in the UFC, typical fights have a max of three rounds, while championships are typically five.
This is a wager on what round you think your fighter will win the round in.
It’s always fun to bet on things like how the fight will end, if the fight will last all five rounds, and other details!
When betting on props, it’s always good to know a lot about the fighters you’re backing. Because MMA has fighters with lots of different styles, you’ll see challengers have consistent strategies. For example, a wrestler or “grappler” is going to get the fight down to the mat – they’re not going to want to be upright competing against someone more comfortable with Ju-Jitsu. If they’re fighting and you think they’re going to win, it might be smart to look for a prop bet that has the fight ending by submission.
The types of boxing bets you’ll see will look very similar to the MMA lines. The difference for you as a bettor will be what you look for in the fighters before you make your bet. Unlike MMA, boxers are all using the same general style of fighting. They might have different offensive and defensive strategies, but you’re comparing apples to apples. Before you place your bet, you might want to look at the fighters’ records, especially around punches thrown / landed.
Both sports have a judged component. And if your fighter hasn’t won outright, the judges will decide the outcome!
Ready to get in the ring? Check out the boxing and MMA lines at Maverick Games.