The different ways to bet on MMA

Although most people realize that you can bet on MMA by picking the winner of a fight, what many don’t realize is that there are actually a whole host of other options. Sometimes it’s tough to predict who’ll win but you have a good idea as to whether it will be a short or long fight, or whether the fight will end in a knockout or submission.

With that in mind, here are five different ways that you can bet on MMA fights, starting with the most common one, which is simply predicting the winner.

To Win The Fight

The most popular way to bet on MMA fights is to predict the winner. Sports betting sites will post a betting line and you’re left to determine who you think will win. You might see a line that looks like this:

Khabib Nurmagomendov -150

Conor McGregor +130

The key here is to note the plus and minus sign. The plus sign tells you how much you’ll win if you bet $100, so in this case, a $100 bet on McGregor would pay $130 if he won. On the other hand, the minus sign tells you how much you have to bet to win $100. In this case, a $150 bet on Nurmagomedov would pay $100 if he won. Of course, you don’t have to bet those exact amounts; you can wager whatever you like, but this just gives you an idea of the payouts.


If you don’t know who is going to win the fight, one of the best alternate options is betting on the over-under. This type of bet is also sometimes known as a total. What you’re examining here is how long the fight will go. The odds makers will set a line that will look something like 1.5 or 2.5. Then you have to decide if the fight will last longer or shorter than the set number.

If the total is at 1.5, that means that the official stoppage time has to come before the 2:30 mark of the second round for you to win an under bet and it has to go longer than that to hit the over.

What you’re really looking at here is what the of the fight will look like. In other words, if you think it’s going to be a long drawn out battle that will be decided by the judge’s scorecards, you would bet the over. If you think the fight features two heavy-handed fighters who are going to be going forward, leading to a quick knockout, you’d bet the under.

Will The Fight Go The Distance?

An alternative to betting on the over-under is a prop on whether the fight will go the distance. For all intents and purposes, this is also an over-under but it gives you a bigger window to win if you plan to bet on the under. In other words, betting Under 1.5 gives you until the 2:30 mark of the second round to win your bet. However, if you bet ‘No’ on the ‘Will the fight go the distance?’, you’re essentially buying yourself more time. Of course, the odds will change accordingly.

Typically, this is a good option to bet ‘Yes’ on if you think that the judges’ scorecards will be needed. You’ll get a much higher payout if you’re right than betting the over on the fight.

Which Round Will The Fight End?

Another popular prop bet is choosing which round the fight will end. Of course, you have a smaller window of winning but you also will collect a nice payday if you happen to be right. It’s sometimes tough to predict that the fight will end in the second/third/fourth round but where this is useful is for the first round. If you’re watching a battle of heavyweights and you don’t think the fight lasts long, you could bet on the fight to end in the first round to try and score that payday.

How The Fight Ends

Those who are MMA experts can typically have a good read as to how a fight might end. For example, if Conor McGregor is fighting, you know there’s a good chance he ends up winning via knockout. Or if Khabib Nurmagomedov is fighting, you know it’s likely that the fight ends in a submission. With this type of bet, you’re specifically choosing how the fight will end.

There are typically a number of options on the board including knockout, submission, judges’ decision or disqualification. Sometimes you can just bet the method and if either fighter wins by that method, you win. Other times, you specifically choose the fighter and the method. In other words, you would bet ‘Jon Jones via knockout’. You can even get more specific and predict the round too but that obviously decreases your window of opportunity.

This is a good bet to use when you know what the fight will look like. If it’s two grapplers or two brawlers, you start to get a good idea of how the fight will play out. That’s where this type of bet can come in handy.