It’s the fight of the century. It’s good versus evil. It’s sublime speed vs. an impenetrable defense. It’s the two best fighters of this generation going toe-to-toe. It doesn’t matter how you describe it or how much hyperbole is attached to the pre-fight build up, when Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao step in to the ring this Saturday May 2 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas Nevada it will be special, not only for boxing fans but all of the sportsbooks booking action on the fight.
The current fight odds at Bodog have Floyd Mayweather as the -220 favorite, bettors would need to risk $220 for every $100 they want to win and a bet on Manny Pacquiao would profit bettors $175 for every $100 they risk on the Filipino congressman.
Online sportsbooks rarely give out total handle on individual sporting events but we’ve been told by a couple of online sportsbooks that this fight between Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao is by far the biggest booked fight in the history of online betting. One Las Vegas bookmaker told me that the total action is already rivaling Super Bowl and could become the biggest single betting event this year. More prefight hyperbole perhaps?
We were able to glean a bit of extra information from our friends at Bodog. Currently the money line is split down the middle. Since the line opened at -350/+250, they’ve seen a steady stream of money coming in on Pacquiao to drive the odds down.
The larger wagers coming in are backing Mayweather but the majority of the bets are backing Pacquiao. The sharp bettors are almost unanimously backing Mayweather while the mainstream bettors are almost unanimously on Pacman. Unlike most sports, the casual fight fan loves to bet on the underdog and with this being one of the few times the beloved Pacquiao has been a dog it’s accelerated the public. When you’re betting with your heart it’s hard to back Mayweather with his brash personality.
Another interesting tidbit I’ve been told, the round betting has been extremely popular due to the big odds being offered. The money on Mayweather is spread throughout the fight but the money on Pacquiao is coming in heavy on the later rounds with most bettors expecting him to be down on points late and needing a knockout for the victory.
Here are a couple other prop bets that have seen some decent action.
Will both fighters be knocked down in the Fight – 16/1
The total number of PPVs sold
Over 3.15 Million -250
Under 3.15 Million +170
The line on the PPV prop bet is set at 550,000 PPV buys more than the best selling PPV ever, the May 5, 2007 fight between Floyd Mayweather and Oscar De La Hoya which did 2.4m.
Over the past decade, it’s safe to say boxing has fallen out of favor with the public. There are many reasons: the rise of the mixed martials arts which by all accounts is more exciting; the lack of American fighters contending for titles; the failure of the USA Men’s Olympic team to medal in a games where they sent fighters; and a heavyweight division that is dominated by two Ukrainian brothers who refuse to fight each other and would rather earn their money in Germany than a the United States. Along with it went Sportsbook’s revenue from boxing so this not only has a chance to reignite the world’s love of boxing but it could also give sportsbooks another valuable revenue stream.