What is a Moneyline bet in boxing? How to read odds?

The most popular bet in boxing is the moneyline bet. Moneyline odds are made based on the linesmakers opinion of a fighter’s likelihood of winning or losing a given match. Similar to baseball the moneyline bet runs on a point system. For instance, if a boxing match is being listed as an even money bet where both fighters have a 50/50 chance of winning the odds on Fighter A will be -110 moneyline and Fighter B will be -110 moneyline. Both fighters are -110 because the sportsbook takes an automatic 10% vigorish or “juice.”

For instance, if Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao were to have a rematch it would most likely be listed as an even money fight with Floyd Mayweather -110 and Manny Pacquiao -110 moneyline. This means that a $110 bet on either fighter pays out $100 profit on your $100 wager. Most fights have heavy moneyline favorites where you will see the favorite listed at something like -800. This means that you would have to wager $800 to profit $100. The reason for this is that the -800 fighters are given an 88.9% chance on winning based on probability. The way to figure out a fighter's odds of probability for winning a match one has to do simple math. For instance, when Floyd Mayweather fought Robert Guerrero he was a – 800 favorite.

To figure out Mayweather’s odds of winning the match you must add 100 to 800 and divide. For example -800 moneyline means that you would divide 800 into 900 which equals 88.9%, Mayweather’s odds of beating Guerrero. It is common to see a favorite with a price tag of -1000 with the underdog at +700. What is the reason for the lopsided numbers? The underdog is the underdog for a reason but upsets happen in boxing frequently because one punch can end a fight. If you have a fighter at +700 moneyline this means that a $100 wager would pay out a $700 profit. For instance, when Muhammad Ali defeated George Foreman he was a +700 moneyline underdog. Nobody expected Ali to win due to Foreman destroying Ali’s nemesis Joe Frazier with relative ease. On a -1000 moneyline +700 is about a normal price to see on the underdog.

The price on the underdog varies based on two factors: punching power and resiliency. A talented fighter that can’t take a punch like an Amir Khan could be listed as a -1000 favorite but the underdog might only be listed at +400. The reason for this is that even though Khan is expected to win his vulnerability makes an upset more likely to happen, therefore a lower price tag on the underdog is given. Fighters known as heavy-handed fighters will also be given lower moneylines as underdogs even against resilient opponents due to their ability to end the fight with one punch.


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