A fight that took place at UFC Vegas 64 is currently under investigation by a firm that monitors suspicious betting behaviors after lines shifted dramatically in the hours leading up to the matchup between Darrick Minner and Shayilan Nuerdanbieke.
First reported by ESPN U.S. Integrity — a company that identifies “suspicious behavior by analyzing changes in betting data against a benchmark of normal betting activity” — has started looking into the the odds for the fight, which saw Minner balloon from a +170 underdog at opening to a +330 underdog by the time the action started.
The fight was stopped after Minner attempted to throw a kick during the first round. He then began favoring his left leg, despite having suffered an injury. Nuerdanbieke finished him just moments later with the official stoppage coming at 1:07 into the fight.
According to reports, money poured in on Nuerdanbieke to win by knockout with additional money hammering the line for the fight to last under 2. 5 rounds with some sportsbooks actually removing the action from the board.
In the wake of the investigation, UFC released a statement saying that they are also investigating the matter but have no evidence to suggest that fighters or teams were involved. The statement was first issued to Yahoo Sports.
“UFC, like many other professional sports organisations, works with an independent gambling integrity service to monitor betting activity at our events,” UFC officials stated. “Our betting integrity partner, Don Best Sports, a leading global supplier of real-time betting data for North American sporting events, will conduct a thorough review of the facts and report its findings.
“At this time, we have no reason to believe either of the athletes involved in the bout, or anyone associated with their teams, behaved in an unethical or irresponsible manner.”
The unusual betting on the fight reportedly started a few hours earlier with money pouring into the sportsbooks, which led to the alert being sent to U.S. Integrity to monitor the situation. Even with the dramatic shift in odds, money was apparently still being wagered against Minner and the line for the fight ending in under 2. 5 rounds.
U.S. Integrity does not maintain any power to punish potentially illegal behavior but the company can report irregular results to regulators as well as state authorities in Nevada where the fight was held.
At this point, both the UFC and the UFC are still monitoring the situation.
The investigation follows a UFC code of conduct update that prohibits fighters from placing wagers on fights. Dana White, president of UFC, later said that there was no problem with anyone placing bets on fights.
“Gambling has opened up all over the country,” White stated at UFC 280’s post-fight press conference. People who regulate gambling do not believe it is a good idea to allow fighters bet on their own, which I also agree with.
” It shouldn’t be happening. It should never happen. This is not a good look. [It’s] more optics than anything.”