MMA betting is not an exact science but there are certain tried and tested strategies that can help increase your odds of success. These go beyond the basics of doing your research (something that should be a staple of any successful bettor) and can include things such as paying close attention to fighters’ injuries, watching their training camp videos, studying their fight film and skills, and comparing their fighting styles against each other.
Much like in other combat sports, MMA is split into men’s and women’s divisions spanning several weight classes. The top fighters in each of these classes are listed as champions and their next best competitors are listed as underdogs. Some matches are also held as catchweight, meaning the combatants are allowed to fight at a pre-determined weight above or below the divisional rankings.
In MMA betting, the most common bet is on which fighter will win their bout. This bet is known as a money line and the odds associated with each fighter indicate how likely it is that they will prevail. The odds are based on the fighters’ respective skill levels, current divisional ranking, past performance, fighting style and strategy, and training camp attendance.
As with any other sport, the best way to make a profit in MMA betting is by backing underdogs. This may sound counterintuitive but it is a strategy that many professional gamblers use. It is not uncommon for the underdogs to win more than half of their fights. However, you should always be sure to study the fight odds closely and check for early lines. Many sportsbooks will post their MMA odds well in advance of the fight.
Aside from the moneyline, MMA betting offers other markets such as method of victory (betting on which fighter will win and in what round) and over/under rounds (bet on how many total rounds the bout will last). Some sportsbooks also offer round bets, which are more precise than the moneyline and over/under bets, and often pay out larger payouts.
Another key to a successful MMA betting strategy is to look at the fighters’ styles and stances. For example, southpaw fighters can be at a disadvantage against orthodox fighters as the latter are used to fighting right-handed. In addition, the experience level of each fighter is a major factor in determining a matchup’s outcome. A recent study revealed that fighters who were five or more years apart from their opponent won 61% of the time. This is especially true for veteran fighters who know how to fight smart. Inexperienced newcomers are often prone to making mistakes and can be easily defeated by veteran fighters who know the game inside out.