It has been quite a while since a boxing match has completely captured the imagination of both the sports world and those who like to bet on sports, but this Saturday night's welterweight battle between Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. certainly fits the bill.
In what could be one of the biggest betting events in boxing history, Bovada has taken the lead by releasing a number of prop bet odds surrounding the outcome of this bout, which will take place at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The following are a few of my picks for the prop bets I believe offer the best value in their odds.
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The Over/Under on Total Rounds
Bovada has posted betting odds for the length of this 12-round bout for every round from 1.5 to 11.5. The betting odds the fight lasts less than 1.5 rounds are -10000 for "over" and +1600 for "under". The odds change dramatically to -310 for over 11.5 rounds and +240 for under, which are far more realistic considering that most every boxing expert is predicting that this fight will go the distance.
I decided to go out on a limb with a play on the +285 betting odds that this fight stays under 10.5 rounds. Both of these fighters are far from being in their prime, and the wear and tear of such a hyped fight could take its toll on Pacquiao as the fight drags on past the middle rounds.
Pacquiao's last three fights have gone the distance, but he was knocked out by Juan Manuel Marquez in the sixth round of a fight back in 2012. Mayweather is not known for knocking out fighters, and his last five fights have gone the distance. Looking a bit further down his sterling 47-0 record, he did record a KO and a TKO in two of his previous four bouts before these last five fights.
There is some definite risk going with the assumption that Mayweather wins this fight by a KO or TKO somewhere before the midway point of the 10 th round, but that may be the only way to try and squeeze some value out of the numbers.
What Round Floyd Mayweather Jr. Wins in
There are betting odds posted for which round Mayweather wins this fight starting at 33/1 he wins in Round 1 and going to 20/27 he wins by a decision at the end of 12 rounds. It would be far too hard to pick an actual round, so I am going to hold tight to my bold assumption that he wins this fight before the end of the mid-way point of the 10th round with a play on the 16/1 betting odds that Mayweather ends this fight somewhere in rounds seven through nine.
It's going to take some pounding to wear down a veteran fighter such as Pacquiao, so that is why I ruled out the early rounds. By the seventh round, the pace of the fight will be set and Mayweather should have his best opportunity to end things during the next three rounds. Once we get past the ninth round, the likelihood that this fight ends as a decision really starts to set in.
Floyd Mayweather Jr. Wins by a TKO
Sticking with my game plan to extract as much value as possible out of these prop bet odds by going against the grain that this fight ends as a decision, I am going with one final play that Mayweather wins this fight by a TKO at 10/1 betting odds. I already have this fight ending before start of the 10th round with my first two picks, so this final assumption would tie all three of these prop bets together.
As I have already mentioned, Pacquiao is a veteran fighter, and it will be hard for Mayweather to knock him out of this bout. That being said, I can see Mayweather continually landing enough hard punches to gradually take their toll on his opponent. Once that opening presents itself in the later rounds, I can also see Mayweather stepping things up to end this fight in the ring and not at the judge's table.
I obviously need everything to go according to plan to hit any of these three prop bet picks, but I believe that Mayweather is highly motivated to make a statement in this fight with so many people betting against him to win. There is no bigger statement then beating your opponent into submission with a TKO.
Read more articles by Dave Schwab
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