The world only has to wait until Saturday to finally see Floyd Mayweather take on Conor McGregor following months of hype and build-up, not to mention some of the most surreal and zany press conferences in sports history. The lads at Paddy Power are so confident in the outcome of the bout, they don’t see any reason to wait.
According to Paddy Power, because there is "only one... boxer" in the fight, the Irish bookmaker chose to pay out over a quarter million pounds early to punters that wagered on Money Mayweather! In a blog post published Wednesday to announce the early payouts, Paddy Power himself justified the decision thusly:
"Patriotism aside, we are paying out early on a Mayweather victory – because we checked, and only one of them is a boxer. We always bet on black."
The post from Paddy Power also features a wealth of additional information that helps to explain the sheer size and scope of the action surrounding this weekend’s mega fight. The most eye-popping number is the £200 million in bets the bookmaker expects to take on the bout, making it the largest boxing market in the company’s history.
That £200 million number represents a figure over three times the size of Paddy Power’s previous record-holder in the boxing market, Mayweather’s 2015 tussle with Manny Pacquiao. The top oddsmaker expects the majority of that massive sum to be wagered within 36 hours of the opening bell.
But it is worth noting that the action on the fight has been hot and heavy since the market opened, with over 80% of Paddy Power punters backing Ireland’s Notorious native son. That outsize wagering on one competitor has meant the odds at the window have taken a massive shift over time despite the fact that experts are near unanimous in their opinions that Mayweather will win, and win handily.
When the market for this fight first opened Floyd was available at a prohibitive 1/20 with Paddy Power, but the tidal wave of support for McGregor at the window has pushed that to an incredibly tempting 1/4 for the undefeated American. On the flip side, despite competing in his first professional boxing match, those looking to bet on the Irish underdog will find his odds sitting at no better than 10/3.
Given how mismatched this fight appears to be on paper, it is hard to see any kind of value in that number, a number that has been driven by early bets placed by McGregor’s zealous fans when the odds were much longer and much more appealing. While the opinions of experts give Conor McGregor nary a chance to emerge victorious-something we tend to agree with – there is precedent for Paddy Power to wind up with egg on their face following an early payout, something that could give hope to McGregor backers.
In October of last year the company declared Hillary Clinton a lock to win the United States Presidential Election, paying out those who bet on the former First Lady two weeks before election night, and we all know how that turned out. The early payout for that market was considerably larger than the one announced in advance of the fight this week, costing the company millions when all was said and done.
So even if another world-beating upset is in the works, the decision to pay Mayweather wagers early won’t hurt Paddy’s wallet in the same way. While Paddy and just about everyone else in the know don’t give McGregor a chance on Saturday, that doesn’t mean there isn’t value to be found in the must buzzed-about fight in history.
Savvy punters can find real value by betting on things like the manner and round of decision, whether the fight will be over in 60 seconds or less, or whether Mayweather will hit the canvas even once in the bout. Even hyper-specific and extremely unlikely scenarios such as McGregor winning in 50 seconds or less after throwing a single punch (50/1 odds) to the referee being knocked down by a punch (100/1).
You can even bet both men being knocked out simultaneously (200/1) are on offer for those looking to spice up the action. While you may have missed the opportunity for an early payout, there is still plenty of time to get bets in ahead of the biggest boxing match in years. To lay your wagers down before Mayweather and McGregor touch gloves, head to Paddy Power today!