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Online Boxing Betting Guide

Introduction to Boxing Betting - Boxing has a worldwide following and has been around in one form or another for many a year. There are records of organized fist fighting going back as far as Ancient Egyptian times and boxing was officially accepted as an Olympic sport in the 7th century BCE. Since then the sport of boxing has evolved into the more modern format we are familiar with nowadays.

Ever since those early rounds of fighting, betting on boxing has been a part of the sport. To this day it remains one of the most popular sports to bet on at all levels. Even low level amateur matches will tend to attract a great number of bets.

Virtually all online betting sites will cover most professional matches by offering betting markets on them. Generally speaking, it is the higher profile boxing matches that attract more television coverage and as such generate more interest. Therefore the range of wagers available at boxing betting sites on the bigger fights and boxing matches will tend to be much larger.

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Not all betting sites offer great coverage of boxing fights and matches, in this section we list the best boxing betting sites rated according to our strict requirements which include reputation, trust, history, ease of banking, quality of service and support, and the diversity of boxing wagers on offer.

Boxing Events And Fighting Formats

Boxing comes in many forms, the most obvious distinction being that between amateur and professional boxing. Amateur boxing may not receive the same exposure in the media as its professional counterpart but is still incredibly popular. The amateur level of boxing covers collegiate level and, of course, Olympic boxing – which is where many professionals make their name.

Boxing is also fought at different weight classes. Each weight class has a different standardized weight range, which the boxer must fall into to fight at that level. Anyone who has watched any boxing on the television will no doubt be familiar with the weigh-in, which takes place before the fight. At this point the boxers must prove they are at the correct weight to take part in the scheduled fight. The top weight class in professional boxing is referred to as heavyweight, and is generally considered to most glamorous level of boxing.

Boxing has also a number of sanctioning bodies, which recognize ranking fights and award championship belts to the top fighters. It is possible to have a number of different world champions at any weight class, although the ultimate aim is to be the undisputed champion of the world – holding all the belts from the different sanctioning bodies.

Worldwide boxing includes five major boxing organizations and 17 different weight class titles including heavyweight, middleweight and featherweight. Boxing match ups occur mostly from January through September, with title matches for each class occurring throughout the season.

Types of Boxing Bets and Wagers

As with most sports, there are many different bets available on boxing matches. For lower profile matches, the range of wagers offered could be relatively small. However for the big fights, such as championship bouts, the big online betting sites will offer a variety of different bets. We’ve listed some of the more common wagers here.

  • Match Betting (Fixed Odds) - Match betting is the undoubtedly the most common bet in boxing. A simple wager, it just involves picking the fighter you believe will win the fight. Fixed odds betting at online boxing betting sites means that you are offered a price when placing your bet and, if you win, you are paid out at that price. Fixed odds will generally be presented in one of two formats, either as a fraction or as a decimal. 2/1 is an example of fractional odds – and this would pay out twice your bet in winnings plus your original stake. An example of decimal odds is 2.5, which would pay out two and half times your wager including your stake. A draw is possible in boxing, although that outcome is rarely backed.
  • Moneyline Bet - This is basically a match bet, just presented differently by boxing betting sites. For a moneyline bet, an online betting site will set the moneyline based on the likelihood of the result. As an example Fighter 1 might be at -700 and Fighter 2 at +500. In this case, Fighter 1 is a clear favourite. To win $1.00 on Fighter 1, you would need to have wagered $7.00. Alternatively, a $1.00 bet on Fighter 2 could return $5.00.
  • Round Betting - This is another straightforward bet. Every boxing match is divided into rounds, and each round is scored by the judges. Round betting involves betting on a fighter to win a particular round.
  • Knockout Bets - Predict whether a boxer will win the fight by knockout.
  • Draw - wager the outcome of a fight to end in a draw.
  • Specials/Prop Bets - Given the nature of boxing, there are not as many of these types of bets as in some other sports. However, most online betting sites will offer a few specials, or prop bets, on the big fights. A prop bet is boxing might be the method of victory, how many rounds the fight lasts, or which round a fighter wins in.

Common Boxing Betting Lines

There are three main outright money line bets on boxing. These money lines are each considered single wager, straight bets. bettor can bet on:

  • The favorite to win outright
  • The underdog to win outright
  • A draw between the two fighters

The most common props bet for boxing is a Total Rounds bet wagering over/under on the total number of rounds the fight will last.

Reading Boxing Betting Odds

A recent boxing betting line listed odds on a 12-round welterweight match between Floyd Mayweather, Jr. and Shane Mosley as follows:

  • Floyd Mayweather, Jr. -450
  • Shane Mosley  +275
  • Over 11.5 Rounds  -350
  • Under 11.5 Rounds +250

With each of these options, the betting lines list the payout odds for each bet. The favorite Mayweather is listed with a minus sign by his odds to win. A $450 bet on Mayweather wins $100 for a total payout of $550 if he wins the fight.

Mosley is the underdog, listed with a plus sign by his odds. Mosley bettors can bet $100 and win $275 for a total $375 payout if he wins. If a draw betting line is available, it will usually be listed with a plus sign and the amount a bettor wins if wagering $100. As in this case, draws may not be offered on every boxing match or by every sportsbook.

Total rounds are frequently shown as a number plus half, such as 4.5, to make a clear distinction in how to count the rounds. If the above bout winner is declared in 11 rounds or less, the under bettors win $250 on a $100 wager. As a scheduled 12-round fight, taking the Over 11.5 rounds odds means a bettor pays $350 to win $100 more if the fight lasts through at least half of round 12. In standard boxing matches the midpoint of the round is at 90 seconds. Over 11.5 rounds then means that the match has to play longer than 90 seconds in round 12 for the over bettors to win.

Additional Props Bets On Boxing

Winner By KO - In addition to the above bets, other common props bets for boxing matches focus on how the winning boxer will end the fight. The most common boxing props bet is that the winner will win by a knock out. Boxing bettors wagering that the fighter will win by knock out have three ways to win the bet:

  • The fighter wins with a knock out (KO)
  • The fighter wins with a technical knock out (TKO) or referee stoppage
  • The fighter's opponent is disqualified (DQ)

Fight Outcome: Five-Way - Five-way fight outcome boxing betting allows for five different decisions that can determine the outcome of the fight. Only certain matches will have a five-way bet available. This happens most often when players are more evenly matched. This bet breaks down the ways that each player can win, giving specific odds on distinct types of wins for each contender. Following a boxer's statistics is key to placing a strategic five-way bet.

A fight outcome boxing bet includes:

  • Boxer A to win by knock out (KO), technical knockout (TKO) or disqualification (DQ) +350
  • Boxer A to win by Decision or Technical Decision +750
  • Boxer B to win by knock out (KO), technical knockout (TKO) or disqualification (DQ) -150
  • Boxer B to win by Decision or Technical Decision +325
  • Draw or Technical Draw +2000

In this case, for a player to win by decision requires both boxers to last through the scheduled last round of the fight. A technical decision is necessary when a medical stoppage ends the fight through a referee or doctor's decision. In both decision outcomes, the winning boxer earns his title by collecting points for hits and technical skill throughout the match. Whichever contender has the higher point score at the decision point of the match will be the fight winner.

As with the straight money line bets, if the favorite boxer B wins before the scheduled end of the fight by a knock out or its equivalent, bettors win $100 on a $150 bet. If the underdog boxer wins by KO, bettors earn $350 for their $100 wager. With the odds listed this way, bookmakers indicate that the most favored outcome is for Boxer B to win by knock out. Knock out wins before the time runs out on the match are also called Inside the Distance wins.

A draw option is included in this boxing betting line. The odds show that a draw is unlikely with this match up, but if a bettor takes those odds and the uncommon outcome ends the fight, a $100 wager will win $2000.

Online Boxing Betting Tips and Strategy

The most important strategy for selecting winning boxing bets is to do your homework on contenders before a match up. Boxing statistics will list a player's previous fight record by round, showing how the boxer tends to perform at each stage of the match. A defensive fighter may be more effective at lasting until the scheduled end to win by decision rather than by knock out. Boxers' average rounds will help determine whether an over/under bet is a good one for this match up.

Bettors new to betting on boxing can read up on recent articles at most major betting sites to get a better sense of the contenders' personalities and fighting styles. Statistics, recent trends and expert picks can also start new bettors with lower risk boxing bets until the sport becomes more familiar. Betting boxing is focused on who will win and how. Get familiar with the nuances of the contenders in order to choose a winning wager in boxing betting.

For rules references see World Boxing Association.