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UFC Fight Finishes Over Time

It's been a wild year for the UFC. From the global pandemic, to Fight Island, to having two of its greatest all time fighters retire within the same week of each other, the UFC is constantly adapting to change. However despite the chaos that ensues around the UFC, the fight quality remains the same if not better than the year before. This allows the UFC to deliver a consistent quality product regardless of contract disputes, increased competition, and macroeconomic factors.

This can be seen through the lens of fight finishes. For the past decade, knockouts have been trending up while submissions have been trending down. That being said, the total numbers year to year are generally within a few percent of each other. To put this into simple terms, if the difference in knockouts from one year to the next is 1%, that would mean if the UFC put on 500 fights the total difference would be 5 knockouts - which over the course of the year is nothing significant.

Finishes by weight class remain generally the same as well, with the heavier weight classes scoring more knockouts and less submissions.

So what does this mean from a gambling perspective? The obvious answer would be prop bets. For example, if 2 or more Heavyweight fights are on a card, it is extremely likely that one of them will end by knockout. Another aspect to take note of is the theory of regression, or the idea that everything will return to its average. For instance, submissions in the Light Heavyweight division are significantly down in 2020 when compared to the last 4 years. This would lead one to expect an above average 2021 submission count in the Light Heavyweight division.

Data provided by www.ufcstats.com


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