Boxing is one of the most popular sports in the world, with the biggest fights being must-watch television. Naturally, betting on the outcomes of fights has always been a way for boxing fans to make money while also enjoying their favorite sport. This guide walks you through everything you need to know about how to bet on boxing.
How do you bet on a boxing match
While a lot of sports will have dozens of different markets available for you to bet on with each given event, the options are a lot fewer with boxing matches.
Here are the leading ways for you to place bets on a boxing match:
Moneyline bet: Choosing an outright winner
A moneyline bet is the simplest form of betting on a fight. You bet on the boxer that you think will win. You don’t need to choose how the boxer will win the fight or what round they win the fight. It is all about who is victorious at the end of the bout.
Predicting the number of rounds
For most title fights, there will be 12 rounds if it goes the distance. However, if there is a KO then this fight could be over a lot earlier. Most bookmakers give you the option to bet on the specific round you think the fight will end.
You will also be able to take an over/under option. This over/under is usually 9.5 rounds. Therefore, if you think the fight will end at some stage in the first nine rounds, you bet on the -9.5 round option. If you think the fight will go longer than nine rounds, you choose the +9.5 rounds option.
Finally, you can bet on a fighter winning within a group of rounds. This means predicting the fight ending in rounds 1-3, 4-6, 7-9 or 10-12.
Selecting the winning method
If you want to bet on the way in which a boxer wins as fight, you have two options. You can bet on a fighter to win by decision or you can bet on them winning by KO. If you choose the latter option, this covers TKO and DQs also.
Is it legal to bet on boxing?
Betting on boxing is legal in some jurisdictions and not legal in others. In the United States, the federal ban on sports betting came to an end in May 2018. Since then, sports betting (including betting on boxing) has gradually become legal on a state by state basis.
New Jersey has legal sports betting since June 2018, which means that anyone in the state that is at least 21 years old can now bet on boxing. You can do so at a physical sportsbook or you can download a mobile app and place bets directly through your phone.
The New Jersey Division of Gaming Enforcement issues licenses to sportsbooks. Therefore, make sure that you deal with a reputable licensed sportsbook when betting on boxing.
Where to bet on boxing
If you are in New Jersey, you are able to bet on boxing at any sportsbook that offers boxing markets. All of the major sportsbooks in the space will support boxing, which means that you have a lot of choices.
First and foremost, after making a shortlist of potential options that offer boxing betting, you need to make sure that they have a license in the state. Then you can look at other variables on deciding which platform to use.
You may have a preference for placing bets in person or online. Welcome offers or deposit methods may be key factors for you to compare and contrast different options. Whatever the case may be, you have a myriad of options to select from when betting on boxing.
Useful tips when betting on boxing
When it comes to all types of betting, it is a good idea that you have a plan in place. This gives you direction and a well-thought out strategy to maximize your profits.
The most basic advice is simply knowing as much as you can when you place a bet on boxing. The more you know, the greater your chances will be of spotting value and making smart bets.
If you are looking at a fight that is a very lopsided mismatch, then there will not be a lot of value in backing the favorite. In this case, you may prefer to look at the number of rounds the fight will last or the method of victory.
You will want to look at the favorite’s past fight history and breakdown their performances. This includes looking at how many fights went past nine rounds, which round did they usually win if it was a KO and the most common method of victory.
You should also do the same for the opponent. If they have previous losses, you can see in what rounds they started to falter or see how well they performed against this particular style of fighter.
This will allow you to spot potential betting opportunities at good odds.
How many rounds in boxing
In professional boxing, most fights will be twelve rounds. The amount of rounds really depends on who is promoting the fight. Less significant fights may sometimes have ten, eight, six or four rounds.
For amateur boxing, the standard rule is that women’s fights last four rounds and male bouts last for three rounds.
Amateur boxing focuses more on the number of clean punches a fighter lands. This is opposed to the professional system being more focused on knockouts and power.
How long is a boxing round
Each of the professional fight rounds will last for three minutes. There is a one-minute break in between each of the rounds.
For an amateur fight, a round for men lasts three minutes and a round for women will last two minutes. There is also one minute of rest between rounds in an amateur fight.
How is boxing scored
The scoring system for professional boxing matches is the 10-Point Must system. This sees each of the judges on a panel score each round using a 10-point scale. Usually, a round will end 10-9 with the dominant boxer getting the 10 points.
If one of the fighters gets knocked down during a round, they will lose a point. In the case of both fighters getting knocked down then these points cancel each other out.
If one of the fighters completely dominates a round, they can get a 10-8 score. Sometimes the judges believe a round was even, in which case each fighter gets 10 points. If there is some form of an intentional foul, the referee can take away points. Unintentional fouls will first result in a warning before a points deduction.
There are a few key variables judges look at when assessing the victor of a given round. They look at the effective aggression, meaning that the aggressor is regularly landing punches and not getting hit as much. The boxer who imposes their style and will on the round will be looked at, as well as good defense. Finally, clean and hard punches will also be looked at.
Ways to win a boxing match
If a fight goes the distance to the last round, there are a few potential outcomes.
It is a unanimous decision when each judge has the same fighter as having scored more points. A split decision is when two of the three judges are in agreement. Split decisions are usually close fights. A majority decision is when two judges have the same fighter as scoring more points, with the other judge determining it was a draw.
Finally, the fight can be a draw if two judges believe it was a draw. It can also be a draw if one judge determines one fighter is the winner, another judge believes the opponent is the winner and one judge determines the fight to be a draw.
If a fight does not go the distance, there are a number of ways it can end. A KO is when a boxer gets knocked to the canvas and cannot get back up. The referee will usually give the fighter a count of ten to try and get back to their feet.
A TKO (technical knockout) can occur when one of the fighters is getting beaten up and is not responding to a notable number of punches. Therefore, the referee can end the fight even if the fighter does not get knocked down.
A TKO can also occur if a fighter gets knocked down and gets up within the referee’s ten count but is still wobbly. The referee can determine that this fighter is not fit to continue.
Finally, one of the fighters can get a DQ (disqualification) during a fight. Most of the time a DQ will be for repeated intentional fouls, such as low elbows, biting and head butts. There could also be some form of automatic DQ, such as boxing gloves tampering.
When placing a bet on boxing, check with your sportsbook to see if there are any rules regarding DQs.
Boxing weight classes
Weight classes are very important in boxing as they help to make fights as fair as possible. It levels out the playing field as both fighters will be the same weight come weigh-in. Different weight classes will use different sized boxing gloves.
If a boxer fails to make weight initially, they will be given a short amount of time to try and make it again. If the fighter still fails, the fight will usually go ahead but if the overweight fighter wins, then if a title is on the line it then becomes vacant.
Originally, there were eight weight classes in men’s boxing. However, more weight classes were gradually added. Today, there are 17 weight classes recognized by the professional governing bodies. These are:
- Minimumweight – 105 pounds
- Light flyweight – 108 pounds
- Flyweight – 112 pounds
- Super flyweight – 115 pounds
- Bantamweight – 118 pounds
- Super bantamweight – 122 pounds
- Featherweight – 126 pounds
- Super featherweight – 130 pounds
- Lightweight – 135 pounds
- Super lightweight – 140 pounds
- Welterweight – 147 pounds
- Super welterweight – 154 pounds
- Middleweight – 160 pounds
- Super middleweight – 168 pounds
- Light heavyweight – 175 pounds
- Cruiserweight – 200 pounds
- Heavyweight – Unlimited