Mixed martial arts or MMA is a sport in which fighters engage in full-contact combat using boxing, kickboxing, karate, Muay Thai, jiu-jitsu, wrestling, and other martial arts techniques. MMA fights are spectacular sports events, therefore, despite the fact that this sport is quite young, it has already gained considerable popularity.
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How to Bet on MMA: Types of Markets & Bets
Before you even start to look for MMA betting tips, you need to figure out the different types of bets in MMA. From the main markets, we can single out the most traditional and common ones:
1. Winner – Choose which fighter will win the match.od
2. Total rounds – Determine the approximate duration of the fight.
3. Victory method – Bet on how the fight will end: knockout, submission, or decision.
In addition to the main markets, some bookmakers, closer to the tournament, lay out a detailed list for each match. Additional markets include the option to guess more complex outcomes of different fights – in which round it will end, in which round a certain fighter will win, how and in which round a certain fighter will win, etc.
How to bet on MMA fights: How to pick the winning fighters?
To choose a bet on MMA, you need to conduct a detailed analysis of the fight, in which you need to take into account not only the styles and results of the previous fights of the fighters (record) but also less obvious factors.
No less attention should be paid to the opposition of the fighters. It reflects the level of skill and experience of the athlete relative to the top athletes in the organization. You can set a perfect record on weaker opponents that have more losses than wins but lose devastatingly when faced with a more experienced opponent.
Also, studying the opposition can give a superficial idea of the current form of a fighter. It is obvious that an athlete going on a series of defeats from rivals of equal level experiences a decline. And the fighter who took the risk of improving the quality of the opposition and stayed on a winning streak is on the rise.
When analyzing a fight and choosing bets on MMA, you need to take into account the strengths and weaknesses of its participants. An athlete can give out perfect control on the ground and instantly go for submissions, but he has a poor striking technique and ineffective takedowns. In a duel against a basic kickboxer with good takedown defense, such a fighter will at least experience problems. In addition, it is worth paying attention to how the athlete most often loses or wins.
Statistical services can help in comparing fighters, which indicate the athlete's work rate and the effectiveness of certain actions, for example, Tapology, Sherdog, and the official UFC website (see the difference between MMA and UFC).
The physical form of a fighter directly affects his performance in the octagon. To evaluate it, you need to consider 3 main factors:
1. Preparation. It is necessary to take into account the format of the athlete's camp. If a fighter leaves on short notice, then he will not have time to fully prepare for the fight. The fighter will not have time to study the opponent and draw up a detailed game plan, as he will be focused on cutting weight.
2. Weight. It is necessary to follow the official weigh-in ceremonies in order not only to assess the physical condition of the fighter but also to know the athletes who regularly experience problems with cutting. A conniving attitude towards weight loss results in a cardio drawdown in a duel or an early knockout.
3. Acclimatization. The UFC holds events around the world, including Latin America, the United Arab Emirates, Asia, and Oceania. When flying to such exotic places, fighters can experience problems with acclimatization, which will result in poor physical shape in the octagon. Therefore, it is important to take the time to analyze information about the athlete's stay in one of these regions. If he arrives early in order to adapt to the climate, then it is more likely that he will come out in good shape.
4. Downtime. Downtime is an equally important factor in assessing the physical form of fighters. Fans call such athletes “rusted”. During downtime, the athlete loses competitive tone, and the body weaned from extreme situations in the octagon. Because of this, rusted fighters often lose early. They do not have time to quickly adapt to the octagon and respond in time to the dangerous movements of their opponents.
How to Bet on MMA: Strategies and Searching for Value Odds
The most optimal strategy for betting on UFC or MMA is to look for value odds. Each quote displays the bookmaker's vision of the probability of an event occurring. With a detailed study of the battle, you can find inflated coefficients. This happens when the bettor comes to the conclusion that, for example, the victory of one of the fighters is more likely than the bookmaker's analysts estimated.
Knowing how odds for MMA are formed in bookmakers and correctly assessing the chances of a particular outcome, you can bet on MMA and make a profit over the course. As a rule, you can find overpriced quotes in the region of 1.75 – 2.50.
Another strategy is to look for potential fights on the tournament card that won't make it to a decision. Usually, these are fights involving pronounced finishers, significantly rusted fighters, or athletes who looked terrible on the scales.SIGN UP WITH DRAFTKINGS >>
Where to bet on MMA: Best MMA Betting Sites
Now that we covered the main details on how to bet on MMA, which are the Best MMA Betting Sites ?
Most bookmakers nowadays have an MMA section and you will find that most websites offer markets on the biggest events you can bet on in the UFC. Unfortunately, betting on the lower-tier organizations is limited to fewer platforms but there are still places where you can find them.
For example, Betway and Spin Sports offer good markets for Bellator, which is mostly considered as the second-best organization after the UFC.
As for the Ultimate Fighting Championship, it is available on most platforms but different bookies offer different markets. Most commonly, you will see markets for the winner and the total rounds. If this is enough for you, we recommend DraftKings, which has some of the best odds in the industry and their UFC section is the easiest to operate.
If you are looking for additional markets like the ones we described at the start, consider using BetMGM. No other bookmaker offers such an abundance of options at this point.
Feel free to look also our dedicated article on the best MMA and UFC betting app.
How to Bet on MMA: Overview
With a bit of additional knowledge, you can have a successful long-term venture with MMA betting. We discussed all the subtleties that you may have missed – best markets, how to pick a fighter based on the training, skills, and other factors. We also briefly mentioned the best MMA betting sites – BetMGM, FanDuel and DraftKings.
Overall, with the growth of the sport, it is understandable why anyone would want to bet on MMA fights. And honestly, it might seem like an easier sport than football, for example. Our recommendation, however, is to conduct a detailed analysis of each duel and look for MMA picks or predictions before making a selection.