MMA & UFC Betting Trends
Betting on MMA -particularly the UFC- has grown in popularity over the past few years. Although many MMA betting enthusiasts just bet on their favorite fighters there are also 'sharp' bettors that employ many of the advanced handicapping concepts that are effective in other sports. A systematic and analytical approach to UFC handicapping is especially effective since the betting lines on the sport to a large degree reflect the popularity of the fighters involved. It's not uncommon to find fights where the underdog is a less popular but more talented competitor.
One very good tool for profitable MMA handicapping can be found free of charge at Sportsbook.AG. Our MMBA betting trends tool provides a breakdown of betting action on each fight on the card at big MMA events. By reading and analyzing this information you can find plenty of good value betting opportunities. For 'big' fights featuring well-known fighters, it's often effective to take a contrarian approach. Look for matchups where one fighter or the other is taking a sizable majority of bets. Not only will the price on the underdog become more attractive as money comes in on the favorite the linesmaker will often 'shade' the public's fighter for even more value going the other way.
For lower profile or undercard fights, it's often effective to do just the opposite as the strategy for big fights. In a matchup between little-known fighters, a strong move in one direction could suggest 'smart money' backing a fighter that is undervalued. This concept becomes even more effective after the weigh in when sharp MMA betting experts make their final decisions and put their money on the line.
MMA handicapping is in its infancy, but there are plenty of concepts that have been successful in other sports that can be applied. The important thing is to not bet blindly but to use trend data as a 'jumping off point' for additional research.