Mosley vs. Vargas Rematch – 7/15/06

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This Saturday Night in Las Vegas, The MGM Grand plays host to the rematch between Fernando Vargas and Sugar Shane Mosley. In their first fight, back in February, Mosley won by TKO in the 10th round as Vargas’ left eye was swollen shut. If you listen to the Mosley camp, it was swollen shut as a result of an overhand right in the first round. If you listen to Vargas, it was the result of a head butt.

Whatever the case, the fact remains that the injury occurred in the first round, and continued to get worse as the fight went on. Even though Vargas could not see clearly for most of the fight, when the fight was finally stopped due to the injury, two of the judges had Mosley ahead by one point while the 3rd judge had Vargas by one! Point being, even with the injury, this fight was up for grabs with just two rounds to go and Vargas coming on strong, in spite of the goose egg.

As we have mentioned many times before, when betting on boxing, and attempting to profit in the long run, it’s essential to find some live underdogs to take a shot with. We’re not talking about an underdog that has virtually no chance, but rather, a dog where perhaps the odds on the fight aren’t indicative of the actually ability of the two fighters.

Both Vargas and Mosley have been around the block and back. Both have been in the ring against a few of the biggest names in boxing. Delahoya, Winky Wright and Trinidad for example. Both Vargas and Mosley are in the twighlight of their careers.

Mosley beat Delahoya twice while Delahoya stopped Vargas in the later rounds of their fight. Yet, Vargas beat Winky Wright while Winky beat Mosley. Of course, styles make fights, but it’s certainly obvious, when looking at common opponents and then looking at their first fight, that Vargas and Mosley are evenly matched. The “experts” were split on their predictions with the first fight and figure to be split on their predictions this time around as well.

Based on all of that, you might expect the odds on this fight to be even. Yet, Mosley is actually a decent sized favorite. Here are the odds from a few different sportsbooks.

Pinnacle :

Mosley -172

Vargas +162


Mosley -185

Vargas +155

Mosley -175

Vargas +145

When handicapping a fight, ask yourself a simple question. If these two fighters fought 100 times, how many times would each fighter win? If for example, you felt Mosley would win 65 out of 100 tries, then you would essentially be saying that the odds on the fight are correct, thus you would have to pass the fight. If however, you felt like we do, that these two could fight 100 times with each probably winning around 50, then you’d have a nice play on Vargas. At the +162 that Pinnacle is offering, Vargas would only have to win about 38% of the time for us to break even. If we’re correct, and Vargas is likely to win 50% of the time, then we will make a profit over the long haul.

That is how you need to size up a fight, or quite frankly, any sports betting proposition.

We see Vargas being the busier, stronger fighter Saturday night in Vegas, and taking home a close decision.

Incidentally, you can also wager on the over/under rounds. Pinnacle has over 11.5 -163 and under 11.5 +153.

***A note to the wise. SHOP around on fight night. There is ALWAYS a flood of late money on big fights that causes substantial line movement. There are always scalps and even middles (on the rounds prop) available. Even if you have no intention of betting the fight, it pays to look for a scalp. What with the pay per view cost of the fight, why not try and pick up a small scalp to pay for the fight. This way you watch the fight for free.


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