What to Know About New Point Spreads in MMA Betting

MMA Point Spread Betting

Yes, point spreads! Things are really starting to get interesting with mixed martial arts betting. Right now, the sportsbooks are only offering point spreads for UFC fights and not every single fight.

I’ve been waiting all week to write this because BetOnline.AG just released them earlier this morning, and I wanted to get this out to you guys ASAP!

This is great because now we have more options and with more options come more opportunities.

This is a phrase that can work for us or against us. If you stick to moneylines in the NFL and NBA, you’re going to do alright, at least from a winning percentage perspective.

We get in trouble when we see this shiny new toy, and I want to preface this with a word of caution because it can be a trap if we let it.

Ever since the popularity spike of UFC betting when they were the first sport to return after lockdown, there is simply more money involved, and that goes for pro bettors, and those just are just out to add some excitement to the game. This has led to some fashionable favorites being bet up to astronomical amounts. We have all been guilty of riding that hype train just one stop too many, but as the popularity grew, the game changed. Affordable favorites whose betting odds used to be (-160) in fight week are now (-250) and virtually unplayable. Those who saw this coming and got out ahead of it really deserve their harvest.

Now, though, we are left with more dog or pass situations and then when we want to play a line because we put in the work. We read/researched/watched/listened etc – and naturally would like some return on our money.

That’s just human nature. Here’s the thing with gambling and human nature…I will spare you, but I’m sure you get the jist of it.

One of my biggest mistakes that keeps happening is chasing the dogs.

I got away from it in December and went the method of victory route in order to stay on my A-side or the side I thought was going to win. They have got us in trouble, of course, as well, and that’s why I recommend always put something on the moneyline to cover yourself. There is more opportunity for failure with these bets as well as more opportunity to succeed.

Moneylines are awesome, but the books are getting better at making them every day.

Big money whether it be dumb or smart, we can’t always tell at the time, is affecting these betting lines to the point where they are unplayable.

We got back to chasing dogs in 2021, and I would like to be more precise now and not let the betting line manipulate who I am betting on. I have always done a good job of finding the a-side, but the value has become more scarce.

Along with the method of victory betting odds, we now have point spreads in UFC betting. BetOnline.AG has the ones we will be using today. Let’s break down the rules for UFC point spread betting as well as give a few examples and then, of course, some PICKS against the spread!

UFC Point Spread Bets Explained
  • The point spreads are typically (-3.5) or (+3.5) for a 3 round fight and (-5.5) and (+5.5) for a 5 round scrap
  • If your fighter wins by finish, you automatically win the bet
  • These points are for all three judges scorecards
  • For example, if you’re on the (+3.5) and your guy or gal lost the fight but it was 29-28 on all three judges’ scorecards, then you won your bet
  • After the judges, you were down by three but your plus money left you up .5 and paid
  • If one of those judges gave the winner a 30-27, though, you lost.
  • Let’s go ahead and look at the point spread UFC betting odds for this weekend’s Fight Night from Las Vegas
Ronnie Lawrence -3.5:
Vince Cachero +3.5:

This kid Ronnie Lawrence has incredible wrestling, and I think it will be 30-27 if he doesn’t put him away. The cage is small, and I think Lawrence is a level above his opponent here. Otherwise, I would say just take the moneyline at (-165).

You’re almost doubling your payout for him by giving up the 3.5 points. I am on the moneyline, and the point spread as well. Listening to the kid talk, you can tell he is very confident in who he is, not only as a fighter but as a person.

Pick: Lawrence -3.5
Magomed Ankalaev -3.5:
Nikita Krylov +3.5:

Now, this is something I haven’t seen very much. Usually, the fighter giving up the points will be the underdog, but this just goes to show you how much the sportsbooks believe in Magomed Ankalaev.

Nikita Krylov is not a pushover at all, and he is as game as they come, so he isn’t afraid to take chances. That’s a good thing for him because he is outclassed here just by a tick.

That’s my opinion, anyway. I was looking at some Bellator fighters today breaking down their Light Heavyweight Grand Prix and I couldn’t help but notice a trend. Really good 205 pound Russian fighters still lose to Magomed Ankalaev.

The man is not unbeatable, but he is a special talent that is the rightful favorite. Do we want the -3.5 for the (-200) pricetag? Well, here’s the thing. Krylov is a wild man, and this fight will be in the small Octagon. So, I think Ankalaev will get the finish.

He is (-120) for a finish right now at BetOnline.AG. I say jump on that one instead. 6 of Krylov’s 7 losses have come inside the distance.

Pick: Ankalaev inside the distance
Dustin Jacoby -3.5:
Maxim Grishin +3.5:

I’m not sure where the value is yet, but the lines are dead even much like you would see in an NFL game.

I picked Dustin Jacoby already at (-160). I think he is one of the best strikers in the division, and he has the history in GLORY Kickboxing to prove it. Well, I shouldn’t say that. MMA striking is a whole different animal.

Thankfully for Dustin Jacoby he is another animal as well as he had some growing pains and losses transitioning over, but that appears to be behind him now. He is a superb athlete, and when guys like that do something for long enough, eventually they are good at that too.

I am not going to waste your time any longer.

I have to pass on this one.

I feel like it is the perfect example of a pass on a point spread. And if you didn’t know, much like in the dating world, it’s just as important to know when to pass as it is to shoot your shot.

In Conclusion

Those are all of the point spreads that I like this week. If I said I liked them all, would you trust me?

I think those were good. The others seemed to be lined very accurately, and that makes sense because fight week is much more telling, and feeling stronger on a Friday is normal.

Please Note:
Point spreads will soon be huge in MMA, but we have to remember that mixed martial arts judges are generally buffoons. One thing to note about the Las Vegas judges. They are scoring the fight more for damage and less for control. 10,5, and even 3 years ago, they were scoring control so highly even though the rules clearly state that a fight is scored for striking, grappling, aggression, and Octagon control IN THAT ORDER. That is the important part. That is just something to keep in mind, especially if and when you’re live betting.

These point spreads are going to get more and more popular, and we will be able to get some better lines. I think the books did a good job on most of them, but we found a good one!

Lawrence -3.5 is your UFC point spread play of the week!


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Mike Pruitt / Author

Mike has been covering sports professionally since 2017 but on the amateur scene for 25 years since when he was 12. Before the internet changed the world, he would keep detailed statistical box scores of NFL and NBA contests, write recaps, and voluntarily commentate games and fights alone in his room. Mike's military experience, Bachelors Degree, and employment thereafter were always rooted in engineering, science, and teaching. Now he enjoys being able to express himself through writing about football, golf, and car racing among other sports but most of all fighting as his life has been rooted in mixed martial arts including competing and teaching for the past 15 years.