Mixed martial arts (MMA) is a full contact sport, which sees two combatants compete against each other using a combination of martial arts disciplines. Regarded as the fastest growing sport in the world, MMA fuses boxing, Greco-Roman wrestling, freestyle wrestling, judo, taekwondo (all Olympic sports) together with other traditional martial arts including kickboxing, karate, jiu-jitsu, and Thai boxing.
While the roots of MMA can be traced back to the days of Vale Tudo and shoot wrestling, the term mixed martial arts was first documented in 1993, when UFC 1 took place in Denver, Colorado. Since, then we have witnessed the sport – newly legitimized and with a unified set of rules - grow to become one of the most exhilarating forms of entertainment in the world.
The global leader in MMA is the Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC). UFC has been instrumental in restructuring MMA into a professional, highly controlled combat sport. In 2016 the brand was acquired by global sports and entertainment giant Endeavor (formerly WME | IMG). The deal was reportedly the single largest purchase in professional sports history.
Today, if you’re looking for the very best fighters in the world, the most entertaining fights, and the highest stakes, then there is no better place than the UFC. The organisation now produces more than 40 live events annually and sells out some of the most prestigious arenas from around the world. UFC programming, meanwhile, is broadcast in more than 163 countries, to more than 1.1 billion TV households. In fact, it is estimated that there are more than 274 million UFC fans around the world.
More than 500 fighters feature on the UFC roster, competing in a total of 12 different weight divisions (eight men’s and four women’s) – from the smallest at 115lbs (women’s strawweight) to the largest at up to 265lbs (heavyweight).
MMA contests last for three, five minute rounds (five rounds for UFC title fights) unless a fighter wins inside the distance by scoring a stoppage or a submission. If the bout lasts the distance, a winner is found via judges’ scorecards, who use the same 10-point system utilised in boxing, where the winner of the round receives 10 points and the loser receives 9 points or less. Each judge’s scorecard is tallied up at the end of the final round and whoever the majority of the judges have determined to have won the most rounds, is declared the winner.
MMA fighters train in all forms of grappling and striking, and must prepare for every possible eventuality in the lead up to a fight. While many fighters in the earlier days of the sport made the transition from MMA from other professional martial arts – including former women’s bantamweight world champion and Olympic judoka, Ronda Rousey – many of today’s rising stars are well rounded martial arts practitioners who have never before specialised in one individual discipline.
No two fighters on the UFC roster are the same, and each poses a significant threat to potential opponents in at least one area of their game. From explosive striking and dynamic footwork through to high level groundwork and wrestling prowess – every fighter brings a different skillset when they step into the UFC Octagon. This makes UFC betting hugely exciting. It also makes calculating MMA odds for betting a complicated business.
But while establishing the relevant betting lines is no easy task, here at Genting we offer all the insight you might need ahead of each and every fight. If you’re looking to bet on the fastest growing sport in the world, Genting has the UFC odds you need.