There’s a very disturbing trend in MMA- thinking you have the fight won before you actually win. It happens in many sports; baseball, you see a flip of the bat when a batter knows it’s going yard. Basketball, you see a guy turn around and run back before a shot goes in. Football, you will see a guy high-step or even toss the ball to the ref prior to crossing the goal line. They’re all potentially catastrophic, but with MMA, it’s just different. When you start disrespecting your opponent by putting your hands down and dancing around in a sport where it literally takes one punch to end a fight, you’re playing with fire.
The great Anderson Silva tested the limits of his own cockiness many times, until that one time he paid the ultimate price and got put to sleep by Chris Weidman. Last night, in similar fashion, Conor McGregor began to take for granted that Nate Diaz can take an amazing amount of punishment. Midway through the second round, McGregor thought he had the fight wrapped up and started dancing around and putting his hands down. Diaz was battered and bloody, but still very much alive. Then everything changed. WHAM! Nate landed a clean shot to McGregor’s chin and badly hurt the cocky Irishman. From there he made quick work and sunk in a rear-naked choke and the UFC’s cash cow tapped quick.
The moral of the story is you can get away with being cocky for moments in most sports. In MMA, you must always respect the fact that you can get your lights shut off in a half second. That’s why when you are wagering on MMA fights you have to consider a fighter’s potential to get too cocky. The “showmen” Anderson Silva, Conor McGregor, Rashad Evans- types will always carry that risk.
In the co-main, Miesha Tate pulled off an unbelievable come-from-behind victory over Holly Holm. Aside from the second round, Holm had the fight firmly won. In the 5th and final frame, desperation was sinking in for Tate as things were looking bleak. We felt all along that Tate’s best chance at a victory was to wear down Holm on the ground and get a submission or grind out a decision. At +375 (odds dropped to +250 by start time) a tested, motivated veteran was worth the risk and it paid off as Miesha was able to sink in a choke that put Holm out cold. These are the angles we look for when betting MMA. Overall it was a great night of fights and although we went 1-2, our biggest underdog hit which should’ve made for a profitable night.