Betting Basics

How To Bet On UFC Fights

August 22, 2023

From the ancient Colosseum of Rome, where gladiator events marked the dawn of professional combat sports and sports gambling, to the bright lights of the Octagon, society’s love of professional fighters rages on just as strongly two millennia later.

The UFC and its modern-day gladiators have become a big-ticket event in the world of sports betting, with major fights like Jon Jones’ recent UFC 285 drawing in hundreds of millions worth of wagers. And, with scheduled “Fight Nights” occurring on a nearly weekly basis, the UFC is a seemingly endless source of betting entertainment.


Reading UFC Odds

Before we dive into the specifics of UFC betting, we must first briefly discuss what the numbers on a slip— i.e., the odds—mean.

With American odds, also known as Moneyline odds, the odds are presented using a positive (+) or negative (-) sign to indicate the favorite and the underdog, respectively. These odds are expressed in relation to bets of $100 denominations.

Positive odds are assigned to the underdog and represent the amount of profit you can make for every $100 bet. For instance, if the odds are +300, it means that if you bet $100 on an underdog fighter, you would receive a profit of $300.

Negative numbers are assigned to the favorite and represent the amount you would need to bet to win $100. For instance, if the odds are -150, it means that you would need to bet $150 to win a profit of $100 on the favorite.

Ready to try your hand at UFC betting? Let’s go!

Types of UFC Bets

Now that you know how to read the odds, let’s take a look at what a typical UFC gambling slip might look like:

As you can see, bettors have several bet types available for this made-up fight, including:


In the UFC there are several ways to win, including knockout, TKO, DQ, submission, or decision. The moneyline is a straightforward bet on which fighter will emerge victorious, regardless of how they win. In this case, a $230 bet on the favorite Cuidado would win $100. But, if Heran pulled off an upset, a $100 wager would win $180. That said, there are some rare instances where both wagers could end up as a loss, such as a match ending in a draw.

Total Rounds (over/under)

A typical UFC bout has only three 5-minute rounds, whereas championship fights can go as many as 5. In the UFC, the over/under bet predicts how long the fight will last in total. Using the slip above this might look as follows:

  • Over 0.5: -2500 (You bet $2500 to win $100)
  • Under 0.5: +1000 (You bet $100 to win $1000)
  • Over 1.5: -375 (You bet $375 to win $100)
  • Under 1.5: +260 (You bet $100 to win $260)
  • Over 2.5: -200 (You bet $200 to win $100)
  • Under 2.5: +150 (You bet $100 to win $150)

Method of victory

One bet that’s unique to UFC is the method of victory. As mentioned, there are several potential paths to victory within MMA. Each fighter has their own style; some are strikers, whereas others are grapplers—the style can impact the likelihood of a certain type of win occurring. However, with this type of bet, you don’t need to predict the winner, just how the eventual winner will win.


Props are fun additional bets regarding specific outcomes in a fight, such as the yes/no bets on the “will the fight complete 1 round, 2, rounds, go the distance, etc.” Or, you may be able to bet on the method of victory for a specific fighter. Here, the available prop bets depend entirely on what the sportsbook decides to offer.

Remember, as you prepare your UFC bets, be sure to weigh factors like style matchups, weight and reach, fighting record, and health history.

Choose Tipico For UFC

With the UFC exploding in popularity, there are countless betting opportunities for fight fans, ranging from weekly  “fight night” action to scheduled championship bouts. The excitement of the Octagon awaits. And now, equipped with this information on UFC betting options and odds, you’ll be prepared to bet on UFC like a pro.

If you’re looking to expand your knowledge on UFC, you may be interested in learning about how the UFC is scored. This information can provide valuable insights for bettors seeking to make informed decisions. Understanding the scoring system in the UFC is key to analyzing fights and predicting outcomes accurately.

Where’s the best place to place UFC wagers?

At Tipico, we’re a licensed, legal US sportsbook that specializes in sports betting. With a host of available bets for each UFC bout, our book is open to any and all Fight Night fans.

Get in on the fight by downloading the sportsbook app today.


Tipico staff contributions