Glove Size, Type and Weight Class
Glove size and the type of glove manufacturer vary from fight to fight. Most boxing commissions adhere to Las Vegas boxing commission rules which state that any contracted fight under 150 Lbs. will use 8 oz. gloves and any fight over 150 Lbs. requires 10 oz. gloves. While the difference in two ounces of padded
leather might not seem like much the impact of a shot from an 8 oz. glove is far more likely to produce a knockout than a 10 oz. glove therefore making the Under an attractive bet. It should be noted that not all commissions require this rule and some commissions in small boxing markets bend rules like these quite frequently.
Heavier weight classes often produce more Under wins
This factor is a matter of physics with heavier fighters more likely to produce a knockout with a single punch. The average heavyweight weighs about 230 Lbs. and with a 10 oz. gloved fist a hard punching heavyweight can produce punching force that rivals the amount of pressure created by a trash compactor. When legendary 1950's heavyweight Rocky Marciano knocked out Jersey Joe Walcott with a single overhand right the punch was estimated by neurologist to have destroyed 30,000+ of Walcott's brain cells. Marciano weighed only 184 Lbs. against Walcott and was still able to produce this amount of power with a single bomb. The Under bet in heavyweight fights are usually attractive bets.
Boxers motivation and will to win
Boxing is a deadly sport and some pugilist are simply in the ring to pickup a paycheck. For example the invincible Mike Tyson was defeated as a -4200 moneyline favorite by a motivated Buster Douglas after his mother passed away two weeks prior to the bout with Tyson. The Over/Under on Tyson vs Douglas was listed at 2.5 rounds and ended with Douglas winning via 10th round knockout. An emotional factor like this can create out of body performances in almost any sport just like when Hall-Of Fame quarterback Brett Favre turned in arguably the best performance of his life when his father passed days before a Monday Night Football game. Tyson stated in his autobiography that he hadn't trained for the Douglas fight for months and was fighting for easy paychecks. Older fighters are also more likely to quit on their stool when self preservation kicks in after taking brain rattling shots that makes health a priority over pride. Boxers quotes prior to a bout should also be taken into consideration. If a boxer mentions prior to a fight that he is contemplating retirement he is more likely to quit in the early rounds. The Under is an attractive bet in these type of situations.
Boxers cut vulnerability and punch resistance
Some fighters are equipped with leather tough mugs that can be hit with a baseball bat without leaking any blood. Other boxers cut very easily due to excessive scar tissue or thin facial skin. A fighter's ability to take a shot to the head is the most important factor to their level of durability with 90% of punches generally directed at the skull. An inspection of a fighters record can usually reveal how many times the fighter has been knocked down, knocked out or stopped on cuts. While punching to the body is a lost art in modern boxing some boxers can rip visceral bodypunches that can stop a boxer vulnerable to bodyshots. Physical frame and natural weight classes are crucial factors in predicting how well a fighter will absorb a bodypunch. Hall-Of-Famer Oscar De La Hoya was a natural 147 Lb. fighter but when the naturally smaller De La Hoya stepped up to 160 Lbs. to face champion Bernard Hopkins he was stopped with a single bodyshot to the liver. Hopkins was not considered a big puncher but De La Hoya's smallish frame could not handle the punch and he was knocked out for the first time in his career by a bodypunch.
Left-Handed boxers against Right-Handed boxers
Match ups between fighters with opposite stances (Righty vs. Lefty) produce head clashes about 500% more often than fighters with the same fighting stance. The Under in these fights are attractive bets.
Boxers that are rich
The mega fight between Floyd Mayweather vs Manny Pacquiao is a perfect example of what happens when two rich guy fight with a guaranteed Powerball payday provided they show up. Boxers are guaranteed to cash their paychecks win or lose before the bout unless they produce a total non-effort. If a boxer quits inexplicably or doesn't fight back the boxing commission can withhold a fighters paycheck but these occasions are few and far between. Mayweather was guaranteed $220+ million in his bout with Pacquiao who was guaranteed $180+ million to dance with Mayweather a few rounds. The fight itself was a glorified sparring match with both fighters showing little aggression and extreme caution. Most top-level boxers are skilled enough to last the distance if they decide they would rather survive than try to win. Fights of this nature often go the distance and are an attractive Over bet.
Photo by Hermes Rivera