UFC Betting In Illinois

UFC Betting In Illinois

Latest UFC Odds, Lines and How to Bet on MMA in IL

The UFC represents the most viewed, most betted on, and most skilled form of MMA fighting.

In the past ten years, the UFC, which started in November 1993, has seen surges in popularity among both fans and bettors. The fights showcase the world’s top mixed martial artists. Additionally, along with all the thrill, there is a significant potential for financial gain.

The growth of the sport is not solely due to the brutal fights by some of the world’s finest. The UFC’s expansion and fame have been paralleled by the legalization of sports betting in various states. Live UFC betting, for instance, enhances the experience of watching the fights.

Continue reading to discover the different legal methods of betting on UFC fights in Illinois.

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How UFC betting works

Betting on UFC fights is a simple process. You have the option to bet on the victor, how the fight will end, and the duration of the fight before its conclusion.

Naturally, there are more complex types of bets, including UFC prop bets and live betting. We’ll discuss the latter in a forthcoming section.

Until that time, here is a summary of the usual UFC and other MMA bets you can typically find at most legal online and retail sportsbooks in Illinois.


In most sports leagues, such as the UFC, moneyline bets entail sportsbooks providing odds for each team or individual in a single confrontation.

The odds reflect the oddsmakers’ predictions on the outcome of the match and who is most likely to win. The team or individual expected to win will have a negative odds number, while a positive odds number signifies the anticipated underdog.

As a sports bettor, your duty is to select the UFC fighter you believe will emerge victorious and then scout for the best odds available across different sportsbooks. Implementing line shopping is a crucial strategy for achieving success in betting.

Consider this hypothetical UFC matchup as an example:

Conor McGregor       -140
Eddie Alvarez            +110

The oddsmakers predict a tight contest in this fight, as reflected in the close numbers. Nevertheless, they anticipate that McGregor will emerge victorious.

Placing a $140 bet on McGregor would yield a $240 return from the sportsbook if he wins, comprising of your $140 bet plus a $100 profit. Conversely, if you bet $100 on Alvarez and he emerges victorious, your payout would be $210, which includes your initial $100 wager and a $110 profit.

In 2016, during UFC 205, McGregor triumphed over his opponent with a technical knockout in the second round. This victory made him the first UFC champion to hold two weight titles (145 pounds and 155 pounds) at the same time.

Total rounds

You’ve likely heard about wagering on totals or the over/under previously.

Oddsmakers determine the anticipated number of rounds a fight will last and set a betting line. You then predict whether the fight will exceed or fall short of these projected rounds. The outcome of the fight isn’t important, only the timing of its conclusion.

For instance, during the time when Ronda Rousey was defeating her opponents in record-breaking time, the bookmakers might have constructed a betting line similar to this:

Under 1.5 rounds     -550
Over 1.5 rounds        +220

Bets can also be placed specifically on when a fight will end, such as in Round 1, Round 2, or Round 3.

At times, sportsbooks may provide a range of rounds within which a fight will end, such as rounds 1-2 or rounds 2-3. Similar to other bets, you select the outcome you predict to happen. If your selection is accurate, you win your bet.

Method of victory

Most sportsbooks in Illinois permit bettors to place bets on the mode of victory in a fight. This type of bet is distinctive to UFC and other mixed martial arts, where a fighter can win through knockout, submission, or decision.

The outcome of the fight, similar to the total rounds bet, is irrelevant. The crucial factor is that you accurately predict the way the fight will conclude. The odds might appear as follows:

  • Knockout: -110
  • Submission: +150
  • Decision: +500

Clearly, a knockout is anticipated, with a submission also being a likely outcome. Nonetheless, the oddsmakers believe the chances of a decision are quite slim.


Parlay wagering allows you to combine two or more basic bets on one betting slip due to the multiple-fight nature of UFC events.

For instance, let’s say you wish to place bets on the Khabib Nurmagomedov–Conor McGregor match and the Tony Ferguson–Anthony Pettis match. You are sure that Nurmagomedov and Pettis will emerge victorious. These two bets can be consolidated into a single parlay wager.

The return on investment for a parlay is considerably greater than for individual bets. Yet, if not all selections on your bet slip are accurate, you will suffer a loss. Despite the increased reward, the risk escalates with each additional wager added to the parlay.

How to bet on UFC fights live

In Illinois, sportsbook apps and sites enable you to engage in live betting during UFC fights. This kind of wager, also referred to as in-fight betting, lets you place bets on fluctuating lines as the fight unfolds in real-time. You can continue to place live bets even after the fight has concluded.

Live bets at your chosen Illinois sportsbook may encompass attempted submissions, takedowns landed, knockdowns, and takedown attempts.

The odds for the UFC match will keep changing as the fight occurs in real-time. You have the opportunity to place a bet at any stage, with the odds at Illinois sportsbooks being updated in real-time.

Although retail sportsbooks may not provide live betting, you can still place wagers during a fight in Illinois using your mobile device via online sportsbooks. Just ensure you are within the Illinois state lines when placing such bets.

Legal UFC betting sites in Illinois

Anyone who is aged 21 or above and is within the borders of Illinois can place UFC bets at licensed physical sportsbooks or through online sports betting apps, as sports betting is legal in the state.

These sportsbooks, which are legal and regulated, operate under the laws of Illinois, providing assurance to sports bettors that they won’t be defrauded or deceived. The Illinois Gaming Board is constantly assessing and scrutinizing these sportsbooks. As their licenses are granted by the state, they must adhere to the regulations or they risk losing their licenses.

Sportsbooks that operate offshore or illegally are not subject to any state’s jurisdiction, resulting in minimal to no safeguards for gamblers and their funds. Dishonest businesses could defraud bettors or deprive them of their legitimate winnings. Regardless, you lack any legal protection.

Sportsbook rules for UFC betting

Remember, each sportsbook has its own specific house rules for UFC betting. Before placing any bets, it’s crucial to thoroughly read the terms and conditions.

Standard rules for UFC fights include:

  • If a fight does not occur within seven days of the scheduled date, it will be classified as “no action.”
  • All bets will be considered as “no action” if any of the fighters is substituted.
  • The fight is deemed official once the bell rings for the first round.
  • Betting results are not deemed official until confirmed by an official at the fighting venue.
  • All bets will be “no action” if a fight is declared a “no contest.”
  • In wagers on winning methods where a knockout is possible, a KO (knockout), TKO (technical knockout), and disqualification are all considered as a knockout.

These rules, however, are not set in stone. Therefore, you should pay attention to any specific rules established by individual sportsbooks before placing your bet.

Tips for betting on UFC

If you’re planning to bet on an upcoming UFC fight, it’s key to conduct thorough research and devise your betting strategy. While this suggestion isn’t the ultimate UFC betting tip, we hope it guides you towards making well-informed and educated UFC bets.

  1. Get to Know the Fighters: Before placing a bet on a fight, always take time to study the fighters involved. Examine their injury reports, determine if they had to gain or lose substantial weight to be eligible for the fight, compare each fighter’s style to that of their opponent, and review their recent fight history to understand how they’ve performed.
  2. Think about the Possible Duration of the Bout: Can the fighters make the fight last till the end? If both fighters are more defense-oriented, you need to factor that in. Alternatively, do they both plunge into intense action, ending the fight in the first couple of rounds? Examine their fighting style and history to decide if you want to bet on the length of the fight.
  3. The Importance of History: Do the fighters usually last the entire match? Are they known for knocking their competitors out? Such information can assist you in placing your bets. Also, remember to examine their performance against mutual competitors.
  4. Combat Techniques: Does one combatant have a reputation for knockout prowess, while their adversary excels in analyzing and adjusting to their enemy? Do they both prefer to take the fight to the ground and aim for submissions? Identifying their fighting techniques can help predict which one typically prevails when such styles clash. Pair this understanding with additional research, and you may just end up backing a champion.

How to watch the UFC online

You can’t simply turn on the TV and expect to find a UFC fight like you can with many other sports. Rather, you need to utilize specific channels or apps to view these events.

You can view early preliminaries of UFC fight cards on UFC Fight Pass, while ESPN broadcasts the preliminaries. To watch the main fights, purchase pay-per-view (PPV) via ESPN+.

You also have the option to subscribe to Fight Pass, enabling you to stream fights on your mobile device. If you hold existing subscriptions to ESPN or ESPN+, you can utilize these credentials to stream online on your computer or mobile device.

Biggest fights ever in UFC history

Over the years, as the UFC has gained increasing popularity, there have been numerous remarkable fights. The following three are particularly notable:

  • On November 14, 2015, during UFC 193, Ronda Rousey faced off against Holly Holm. At this point, Rousey was the face of UFC and had an undefeated record. Fans rushed to watch her Pay-Per-View matches, where she was known to pulverize her opponents. When her match against Holm was announced, over 55,000 fans attended, with Rousey being the crowd favorite with odds at -900. Many believed that Rousey would claim a swift victory in the first round. However, the match took a surprising turn when Holm not only held her ground but ended up winning the match by knocking out Rousey in the second round.
  • In the UFC 229 event on October 6, 2018, Khabib Nurmagomedov defended his lightweight title against Conor McGregor. This fight, which also risked Nurmagomedov’s undefeated record, garnered over 2.4 million PPV buys. Despite McGregor’s fame in mixed martial arts, largely due to high-profile fights including one against Floyd Mayweather Jr., he was still considered the underdog by sportsbooks. The predictions proved correct when Nurmagomedov won by submission in the fourth round. However, the drama continued post-fight as both fighters clashed with each other’s cornermen, leading to UFC suspensions and fines.
  • On August 20, 2016, Nate Diaz and Conor McGregor faced off at UFC 202. At that point, it was the most viewed PPV match in history, drawing nearly 1.7 million viewers. Fans were eagerly anticipating this rematch, following Diaz’s first-round win by submission. The second encounter lived up to the hype, ending in a full-length battle that saw McGregor clinching victory through a judges’ decision. This fight quickly became an instant classic.

History of the UFC

The Ultimate Fighting Championship (UFC) originated as a tournament where fighters, proficient in their distinct fighting styles, congregated to conclusively determine the superior martial art. The inaugural event, held in Denver in November 1993, concluded with Royce Gracie’s victory using his Brazilian jiujitsu.

Over the years, the UFC has evolved and transformed. In 2000, the organization embraced a set of MMA rules. The era of unrestricted fights was over, and UFC was on its way to becoming a legitimate entity.

In 2001, Station Casinos executives, Frank Fertitta III and Lorenzo Fertitta, identified potential in the UFC and bought it for $2 million. Dana White was appointed as president and spearheaded the development of the UFC into a popular spectator sport over the subsequent 15 years. Their efforts bore fruit in July 2016 when the organization was sold for an impressive $4.025 billion.

The rise of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) soon led to a surge in the popularity of UFC. The emergence of superstar fighters and its recognition as the leading destination for mixed martial arts contributed to its growth. Today, it has evolved into a colossal sports and media entity.


UFC, standing for Ultimate Fighting Championship, recalls the sport’s origins when martial arts professionals competed in a tournament-like event to ascertain the winning fighting discipline.

Endeavor, a group that bought the UFC for over $4 billion in 2016, currently owns it. Other stakeholders comprise of investment firms such as Silver Lake Partners, MSD Capital, KKR & Co, along with UFC president Dana White.

Absolutely. DraftKings is a leading sportsbook for bettors in Illinois, with UFC being among the most wagered sports. It offers UFC fans a broad range of betting options, from standard bets such as total rounds, moneyline, and winning methods, to parlays, futures, props, and live betting.

Conor McGregor is a household name in the UFC world and rightly so. He is among the most renowned fighters globally, and his financial status certainly reflects this. He bagged $3 million from his UFC 202 fight. He made the same amount in earnings from his UFC 246 fight, pocketing another $3 million in prize money.

Dana White, the president of UFC, stated on record that he approximated the brand’s value to be around $7 billion.