A day after UFC 281 and we still have goosebumps after we witnessed it. The event saw a total of 11 finishes, seven in the first round, which is both tied for UFC records. In fact, this is the first UFC Pay-Per-View since UFC 224 in 2018 that saw this many finishes. Those who bet on the ‘under’ on the UFC betting lines would have raked in big winnings.
All five fights on the main card were finished including the two championship fights, which saw both belts change hands. Alex “Poatan” Pereira stunned Israel Adesanya in the fifth round to capture the UFC Middleweight Championship while Zhang Weili recaptured her strawweight title by submitting Carla Esparza.
My favorite recap yet🔥🔥pic.twitter.com/2XW9LkKb5O
— MMA Fire 2.0 (@FireMMAVids) November 13, 2022
UFC 281 Totals: Fast and Furious Finishes
Totals Went Under …
In 10 of the 14 fights. Every fight that was finished, with the exception of Poirier versus Chandler, cashed on the under. Bettors who staked $100 on each fight to go under would have walked away with $748 in total winnings.
Six of these totals were lined at underdog money to go under. The biggest single bet payout for these under took place in the prelims when Michael Trizano knocked out Seung-woo Choi in the first round. The bet paid $165 and was set at 2½ rounds.
On the flip side, Dan Hooker versus Claudio Puelles’s total was heavily expected to go under its 2½-round totals at -155. Hooker finished Puelles with a body kick, four minutes into the second round.
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One Round Richness
Every time a UFC event features more first-round finishes than decisions, it is a cause to celebrate as a fan and a bettor. Plenty of the sportsbook’s props cashed huge here including Trizano-Choi. Not only was this one of the few upsets, but whoever bet Trizano to win in Round 1 (+1100) or Trizano to win in Round 1 by KO/TKO/DQ (+2000) would have secured the best UFC bet for the evening.
On the other end, Erin Blanchfield may have been the biggest favorite (-380) of the evening. But a first-round submission prop for her would have paid $650 for every $100 bet. Likewise, Chris Gutierrez, a -260 favorite, cashed a first-round KO prop at +600 against Frankie Edgar.
UFC 281 Moneyline: Favorites Clean Up
A Good Night For ’Chalk’ Bettors Despite Main Event
UFC 281 will be remembered as the night Adesanya dropped his 185-pound belt. The seemingly invincible champion took his first loss in the division in a fight he was likely winning on the scorecards. Pereira upset Adesanya as a +180 underdog. But this upset was just one of four for the evening.
The event’s three largest favorites all won. A parlay with Blanchfield, Zhang (-340), and Gutierrez would have paid $126 for a $100 wager. On the other end, the smallest favorites to win were Carlos Ulberg (-125) and Renato Moicano (-130). They also got it done with first-round finishes.
Sharp Money was on the Dog
While Pereira cashed as the event’s biggest underdog, the sharps bet online on Ryan Spann (+175). “Superman” knocked out Dominick Reyes in the first round. Just before the fight, however, Spann was still as high as a +180 underdog. Money came in on the 205-pounder and it turned out to be one of the better moneyline bets for the evening.
The Next UFC PPV: Prochazka vs Teixeira 2
Pereira may be returning in the next UFC PPV but as a cornerman to Glover Teixeira. The newly minted champ will support his friend and training partner as he looks to recapture his UFC Light Heavyweight Champion from Jiri Prochazka. The UFC fight night odds favor Prochazka a bit more widely than their first bout.