By Ivan G. Goldman
Oddsmakers continue to show great respect for Floyd Mayweather’s ability to beat his opponent, especially when he’s Andre Berto.
Bovada.com calls it -3000 for Mayweather and +1100 for Berto in their welterweight match Saturday night in Las Vegas. You must bet a prohibitive $3,000 to win $100 on Floyd. $100 on Berto wins $1,100.
The assumed one-sided nature of the contest isn’t helping ticket sales and is likely to damage pay-per-view income. It’s also a spectacularly wide spread for the house. Either way the bettor goes he’s like a racehorse carrying an extra twenty pounds. Keep reading and you’ll find where to get better odds.
All lines quoted herein can be changed at a moment’s notice, but once you get the bet down your payoff won’t change.
Berto by decision was +2800, by knockout +2500. The house is basically telling us that Berto needs a kayo to win. Bovada didn’t have odds posted on Mayweather by knockout or decision. That may have been a technical glitch. But the over/under at 11 ½ rounds was -240 over and +165 under. A draw was -2800.
The last time a Mayweather fight failed to go the distance was four years ago, when he stopped Victor Ortiz in round four. He scored six consecutive decision victories after that. With a record of 48-0, 26 KOs, he’s scored only 2 KOs in his last 13 fights. It’s not a stellar knockout history, but once fighters reach the top, they tend to fight the best, so KOs are harder to come by.
On the other hand, Mayweather, showing his usual satisfaction with a points victory, never tried to stop his last opponent, Manny Pacquiao, who later claimed his right shoulder was almost useless after the fourth round. Conspiracy theorists believe there was no injury, which would mean the surgery that followed was fictitious or something.
The real conspiracy was put together by Team Pacquiao, which clearly was determined to get their fighter in the ring and collect the $100 million-plus even if they had to carry him up the steps.
Berto, 30-3, 23 KOs, has lost to Jesus Soto Karass, Robert Guerrero, and Victor Ortiz. He’s considered over the hill at age 33, but he’s got nothing to lose and is challenging a welterweight and super welterweight title-holder who’s 38 years old. Although anything might happen, it probably won’t, and the odds reflect it.
Over at 5dimes.com the payoffs were more generous in the win-loss category, with Mayweather at -2500 and Berto at +1400. Over 11 ½ rounds was -200 and over +170.
Earlier in the week Bovada was posting an interesting proposition: Will Mayweather fight in 2016? That was no -200 and yes +150. But when I checked again Wednesday the bet was no longer offered on the site. Basically it was a wager on whether Floyd is telling the truth when he says Berto will be his last opponent.
Cooler heads may have prevailed at Bovada, headquartered in Canada, because that’s the kind of proposition that folks with inside information could use to massacre the house.
This is the last of Mayweather’s six-fight contract with Showtime, a record-breaking contract that has already earned him hundreds of millions of dollars. He’s guaranteed somewhere around $32 million a fight, and the figure can rise, depending on sales.
In other contests Saturday Bovada had Vanes Martirosyan favored -500 to Ishe Smith +350. Once again 5 dimes had a narrower line and better payoffs, with Martirosyan -470 and Smith +375.
Roman Martinez was -230 and Orlando Salido +190 at 5dimes. Bovada saw George Groves at -150 and Badou Jack at +120.
Looking forward to November 22, Bovada posted the youthful Canelo Alvarez at -325 and veteran Miguel Cotto at +250. It’s the kind of contest in which odds could lean even more toward Alvarez because there are many more Mexicans than Puerto Ricans. But bear in mind that if you bet on a fighter and he loses, your money gets swiped off the table. It no longer matters what the odds were.
Ivan G. Goldman’s 5th novel The Debtor Class is a ‘gripping …triumphant read,’ says Publishers Weekly. A future cult classic with ‘howlingly funny dialogue,’ says Booklist. Available now from Permanent Press wherever fine books are sold. Goldman is a New York Times best-selling author.