(I owe you a beer, Efrain.)
This Yahoo! MMA Experts post about how favorite-playing bettors got killed at the TUF 8 finale inspired me to share my own experience from the event. On Friday, I opened a BetUS account to do my first-ever fight wagering with real money. (I’d already bet my esophagus on UFC 85, and took heavy losses.) I went easy for my first go-round, spreading $100 over five fights, and wound up losing $25 of it — not awesome for someone who claims to be an expert on this shit. Some highlights:
Biggest Win: Efrain Escudero ($20 bet for $55 profit)
Had we known that Phillipe Nover had no answer for Efrain’s takedowns, he obviously wouldn’t have been such a heavy favorite coming into the fight. Even with what we knew beforehand, I always thought that Nover/Escudero was a toss-up, with both guys carrying equal amounts of talent. I think the betting line fell prey to the "next Anderson Silva, next GSP" hype that was pumping up Nover, and EE’s +275 was too juicy not to take.
Worst “My Fault” Loss: $10 on Jules Bruchez
This kind of dumbassery is how sportsbooks make their money. My thought process was, “Eliot Marshall shouldn’t be -600 against anybody.” But that’s no reason to put cash on the other guy. Bruchez looked hopeless in his quarterfinal loss to Vinny on the show, and I should have known that he’d get owned by another BJJ ace. Still, the idea of turning my ten-spot into $40 was too seductive. What can I say, I’m a rube.
Worst “Your Fault” Loss: $30 on Vinny Magalhaes
Leading up to the TUF 8 finale, Magalhaes was saying that he wanted to beat Bader standing so he could show people he was more than a one-dimensional fighter. That’s pride, fuckin’ with you. And it cost me 30 bones. If Vinny only stuck to his killer jiu-jitsu and took the fight to the mat at his first opportunity, we could be celebrating a different light-heavyweight TUF winner today, and I wouldn’t have finished the night in the hole.
Of course, I also lost money on Dave Kaplan (I really thought Junie’s head and lungs would sink him, but I have to admit he looked great on Saturday) and Jason MacDonald (MY GOD THIS GOUVEIA), but hey, you live you learn. I’ve already got my eye on a fairly promising parlay bet for UFC 92. (Basically, if you’re one of those people who think Nogueira and W. Silva are going to win, you’ll just need to stack the winner of Griffin/Evans on top of it and you’ll more than triple your money.) Anyway, I’ll let you know how it goes.