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September 17, 2014

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Boxing:

Breaking down big bout’s bets

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STEVE MARCUS / LAS VEGAS SUN

Boxer Manny Pacquiao speaks at a news conference Wednesday in Las Vegas in front of a banner bearing the image of his opponent this weekend, Ricky Hatton.

Pacquiao vs. Hatton Press Conference

Boxers Manny Pacquiao and Ricky Hatton exchanged pleasantries and predictions Wednesday at the last press conference before their Saturday fight at the MGM Grand.

East and West Meet in Vegas

With the megafight scheduled for Saturday, Manny Pacquiao and Ricky Hatton made their official arrivals to Las Vegas Tuesday. Pacquiao was instantly mobbed when reaching his superstitious stay at Mandalay Bay, while Hatton was able to address the crowd at fight-site MGM Grand.

Pacquiao, Hatton Make Arrivals

Manny Pacquiao's mother, Dionisia Pacquiao, traveled to the United States for the first time Monday to be with here son for his megafight against Ricky Hatton Saturday night at the MGM Grand. Launch slideshow »

Fight facts

  • Who: Manny Pacquiao (48-3-2, 36 KOs) vs. Ricky Hatton (45-1, 32 KOs)
  • Where: MGM Grand Garden Arena
  • Weigh-in: 2:30 p.m. Friday
  • Fight day schedule: Saturday 2:30 p.m.: Doors open; 2:45 p.m.: First bout; 6 p.m.: Pay-per-view telecast begins; 8 p.m. (approximately): Main event
  • Tickets: Sold out
  • Closed-circuit viewing: $50; Mandalay Bay, Mirage, TI, Monte Carlo, Circus Circus, Luxor, New York-New York
  • TV: HBO Pay-Per-View, $49.95

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When betting the “exact result propositions” on some major boxing matches, it’s easy to dismiss one or two of the options on the board and focus on the remaining props.

Typically, this situation arises when the fight involves at least one boxer known for a slippery, defense-oriented style, or a fighter with little knockout power.

For instance, when light-hitting Paulie Malignaggi fought Ricky Hatton last year, it would have been a sound move to begin your analysis by crossing off “Malignaggi by knockout” — even if you liked Malignaggi to win as an underdog. Then, you could have bet Malignaggi straight up or Malignaggi to win by decision, depending on a number of factors including what odds were available and the estimated probability of a draw.

Likewise, when Winky Wright fights, it’s often advisable to ignore the props that have either Wright or his opponent winning by knockout, as his past 10 fights have gone the

12-round distance.

Saturday’s junior welterweight clash between Manny Pacquiao and Ricky Hatton at the MGM Grand, however, does not fall into that category.

Pacquiao is favored to win the fight at odds ranging in Las Vegas casinos from minus 240 (risk $2.40 to net $1) to minus 270, but each proposition regarding the outcome should be considered “live” — at least more so than in a bout involving the likes of Malignaggi or Wright.

Both Pacquiao and Hatton have knockout power, reflected in the round proposition on the fight, which stands in Las Vegas at over/under 9 1/2 or 10 1/2 rounds, depending on where you shop. But each fighter has also shown an ability to win a 12-rounder by decision.

Based on a review of the worldwide betting market on Saturday’s fight, before taking into account the “vigorish,” or house’s cut of the action, Pacquiao has about a 70 percent chance of winning (minus 233) with Hatton at 30 percent. (This part of the analysis assumes wagers on either fighter to win straight up are refunded in the event of a draw.)

In the props department — where betting on a draw is an option — the market has Pacquiao winning by knockout at about 42 percent (plus 138); Pacquiao by decision at 26 percent (plus 285); Hatton by knockout at 18 percent (plus 456); Hatton by decision at 11 percent (plus 809); and a draw at 3 percent (plus 3200).

Whether you believe your analysis of the fight is superior to the betting marketplace or you’re just seeking value, it’s imperative to shop around for the best number before betting on an “event” fight such as Pacquiao-Hatton.

The price on Pacquiao to win straight up was as low as minus 240 Wednesday (at the South Point/El Cortez) with the price on Hatton as high as plus 220 at several books including the Cal Neva and Leroy’s joints.

Odds figure to fluctuate through fight night, but for the best price on either boxer check Cal Neva, which is dealing one of the most advantageous lines (for the bettor) on the fight. Cal Neva had it Pacquiao minus 250/Hatton plus 220 Wednesday, for a theoretical hold percentage of just 2.6 percent. Other properties had it Pacquiao minus 270/Hatton plus 210, a theoretical hold exceeding 4.9 percent — much worse for bettors.

A typical price in Las Vegas on Pacquiao winning by knockout was 6-5, or plus 120. Lucky’s sports books offer yes/no wagering on all exact-result props, with Pacquiao by knockout plus 135 on the “yes” side and minus 165 on the “no.”

Also at Lucky’s, Pacquiao by decision was plus 210 on the “yes” and minus 250 on the “no.” Hatton by knockout (knockouts for betting purposes include technical knockouts and victories by disqualification) was plus 300 on the “yes” and minus 400 on the “no.” Hatton by decision was plus 550 on the “yes” and minus 750 on the “no.”

The price on a draw was as high as 20-1 at several properties, including Lucky’s joints and the Las Vegas Hilton. Bettors can also play “no draw” at minus 3000 at Lucky’s.

On the round prop, bettors will lay a heavier premium for going over 9 1/2 rounds or under 10 1/2 rounds, depending on where they play. For example, at the Hilton it’s over 9 1/2, minus 135; under 9 1/2, plus 115. At the Palms, it’s over 10 1/2, plus 105; under 10 1/2, minus 125.

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