Recapping the Sportsbook Letdown that was 209
Posted by: Anthony Yaylor
This past weekend, online UFC betting fans were treated to one of the dullest MMA events of the decade. After building the hype around Thompson vs. Wonderboy 2, sportsbook players were expecting a bloody beat down. After all, reigning welterweight champion Tyron Woodley promised a definitive result at the end of their second matchup. But instead, fans were treated to something that much more closely resembled a chess match, with both fighters holding back, unwilling to commit to a specific move due to being afraid of lowering their defenses. Amidst a jeer of boos the fighters went back and forth for twenty-five minutes, and once the action had settled, the judges’ results were not without controversy.
It’s often stressed in the UFC that you should never let it go to the judges’ scorecard, because, as sportsbook players know, oftentimes the judges see something that doesn’t resonate with how the fighters thought they performed. We saw a similar turnout at 209 where most people – including UFC president Dana White – felt like Thompson came out on top 3 rounds to 2.
Most online UFC betting fans will agree that the first round was excruciatingly dull with both fighters taking the time to measure each other out, but in the end Thompson landed more strikes, ergo that round rightfully went to Wonderboy. The second round was a bit of a throw up; one judge gave it to Thompson, the other to Woodley, and one even called it a 10-10 draw. The third round was clearly Woodley’s as Thompson was pinned most of the round and received plenty amount of damage. The fourth once again went to Wonderboy as his karate-influenced fighting was able to keep Woodley at bay, all the while landing a good dose of blows. But once the fifth round came around, and Woodley knew that this was his final sportsbook opportunity to retain the belt, the ‘Chosen One’ exploded and came close to ending the fight in the final seconds of the round via technical knockout. Big John McCarthy – the referee the UFC had scheduled for the title fight – rightfully refrained from ending the fight and the result had to be determined by the judges.
One judge ruled in favor of Woodley, the other called it an online UFC betting draw, and the last gave it to Woodley, giving the reigning champ a 10-8 score for the final round. For those unfamiliar with MMA scoring, 10-10 for a round is a draw, 10-9 means one fighter performed better than the other, and 10-8 means that one fighter dominated the other. Needless to say, Thompson didn’t feel like he was dominated in that final round. But it doesn’t matter, as aforementioned, if he didn’t want to deal with the opinions of others, he should have delivered a finish.
Overall, those who bet on MMA will agree that 209 was a huge disappointment. The UFC had been gaining publicity lately, but their lack to consistently create superstars is severely crippling the company. That, and the fact that a quasi-chess-match-fight only appeals to die hard online UFC betting fans and not your average Joe.