Fantasy MMA and UFC

How to Play Fantasy MMA and UFC

Fantasy Mixed Martial Arts

Fantasy UFC - Fantasy MMA LeaguesFantasy mixed martial arts (MMA) is one of the newest fantasy sports contests available to fans. Players pick their fighters from either UFC or Pride FC events (or both) and earn points based on how the fighters they choose perform in the event. Fantasy MMA has many possible variations, and like all fantasy sports, there is not a “right” way to play. I have listed many of these variations below, but feel free to alter or add to any of them if you are organizing your own league. The important thing is to design a system that is fair to everyone involved and fun for the whole group.

How to Play Fantasy MMA

It's easy to learn how to play fantasy MMA.

Fantasy MMA leagues fall into one of 3 categories:

  • Scoring leagues
  • Betting leagues
  • Individual leagues.

In scoring and betting leagues, players may choose fighters from the pool of participants in the next event, and players can choose the same fighters as anyone else. In other words, fighters are not exclusive to one owner like many fantasy sports. In an individual league, players draft or win the rights to individual fighters in an auction.

Fantasy MMA Points Leagues

Players choose fighters from an upcoming event and receive points for their performance. Most leagues allow you to choose 5 or 7 fighters per event, and most leagues have 4, 6 or 8 teams. Here is a common scoring system, but you may use whatever system you would like.

1st round knockout or submission5 points Later round knockout or submission3 points Victory by decision1 point Loss by decision-1 point Loss in later round knockout or sub-3 points Loss by 1st round knockout or sub-5 points

The team with the most points wins the event. This is a popular format because leagues can be set up as late as a few minutes before an event starts and don’t require any complicated statistical tracking or extra time.

Fantasy MMA Betting Leagues

Betting fantasy MMA leagues are run over a set period of time, forming a season. Players start with a predetermined fantasy bankroll, like $1,000, and place fantasy wagers on fighters in upcoming events. The player with the most fantasy money when the season is completed is the winner. Fantasy betting leagues are more labor-intensive than points leagues because you have to use odds and calculate returns on bets based on them. There are online leagues running where this is an automated process.

Fantasy MMA Individual Leagues

Fantasy MMA can also be run in a similar fashion to MMA and UFC or NASCAR fantasy games. Team owners draft or win rights to fighters in an auction and assign “starting” fighters for each event. If you decide to use this type of system, each team should have ample room on their roster for extra fighters. This type of league should also have a new supplemental draft or auction at set periods during the season, to replace injured fighters or adjust team rosters.

Fantasy MMA Scoring Variations

The most common scoring variation that I have seen is when players make their picks for upcoming fights, they also pick the round the fight will end and how it will end. For example, round 2 by knockout. Scoring for this type of system is below.

Picking the correct round3 points Picking the correct way the fight ends2 points Picking the winner of the fight1 points

Future articles will cover some of the nuances and strategies of how to play in a fantasy MMA of UFC league.

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