How Not to Bet on a MMA Fight

If you've been paying attention to my pre-fight picks you'll notice that I'm pretty careful about what fights I bet on. I always go…

By: Nate Wilcox | 16 years ago
How Not to Bet on a MMA Fight
Bloody Elbow 2.0 | Anton Tabuena

If you’ve been paying attention to my pre-fight picks you’ll notice that I’m pretty careful about what fights I bet on. I always go with the big odds, I always go with the fighters I’m totally confident in and I always hedge my bets.

Just look at my picks for UFC 77 — aptly titled “The Smart Money Bets for UFC 77” — it’s sheer genius. Every pick won and every pick made sweet money off the oddsmakers — Tim Sylvia over Brandon Vera at +135, Alvin Robinson over Jorge Gurgel at +135, and sweetest of all Matt Grice over Jason Black at +300. In everyone of those bets I saw something the maddening crowd was missing.

See most chumps make the mistake of betting on the fighter they are more familiar with (hence Gurgel over Robinson), or the fighter they like better (Vera over Sylvia), or the fighter with the better stats on Sherdog (Black over Grice). But not Kid Nate, I takes a cool, dispassionate look at the odds and the matchups and I does my research. So I win money on most every UFC.

My other secret is I don’t bet on many fights and I especially don’t take bets based on any kind of macho posturing.

Until now. As you may know, Fightlinker has bullied and badgered me into a ridiculous bet that I don’t even really think I’ll win: Roger Huerta over Clay Guida. And I’m not betting $20, I’m wagering the lovely eyebrows seen in this pic (for the record, I’m not shaving them, I’m removing them but not with a razor). On top of that if I win — I don’t get anything cool — unless Fightlinker is willing to take the suggestion of BloodyElbow reader MorethantheUFC and recreate the infamous 2 girls one cup video with chocolate icecream. Otherwise he’ll be recreating the naked grape shot of UFC ring girl Edith Larente.

So let’s review my mistakes:

  1. I talked shit about a fight without really meaning it. Trying to make a point about fighter smacktalk and winning attitudes I overstated my case and said the fatal words “I’m picking Huerta, the guy with the killer instinct.”  Fightlinker, being the opportunistic asshole that he is, immediately jumped my shit. I did have the sense to refuse the bet (a point my attorneys will stress when this goes to trial).
  2. I let my emotions take over. Once Fightlinker launched his low-down Thanksgiving attack on my good name and masculinity, I stupidly took the bet. The real man always walks away — better to look like a wuss now than to lose your eyebrows later. Not being a real man, I accepted — although not without some changing of the terms.

I hope you can all benefit from this learning opportunity at my expense. Not that all is lost, I give Huerta about 15% chance to win — either by flash KO or by lame judges decision but Guida is likely to do the lay and pray for the decision, ala Frankie Edgar/Spencer Fisher — a very similar fight.

In case you missed it you can hear me and Fightlinker going at it on Luke’s “Any Given Saturday” show from last night. There’s some audible pants wetting I think.

Share this story

About the author
Nate Wilcox
Nate Wilcox

Nate Wilcox is the founding editor of As such he has hired every editor and writer to work for the site. Wilcox’s writing for BE is known for its emphasis on MMA history, the evolution of fighting techniques and strong opinions. Wilcox developed the SBN MMA consensus rankings which were featured in USA Today from 2009 to 2011. Before founding BE, Wilcox was a political operative working for such figures as Senators John Kerry and Mark Warner and an early political blogger. He is the co-author of Netroots Rising, a history of the political blogosphere from 2003 to 2007. Wilcox also hosts the Let It Roll podcast on music history for the Pantheon Podcast Network.

More from the author

Related Stories