Bettors, including Holly Holm's manager, win big as sports books take massive hit

  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
In this article:
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.
  • Oops!
    Something went wrong.
    Please try again later.

Holly Holm hit the jackpot when she knocked out Ronda Rousey on Saturday in Melbourne, Australia to claim the women's bantamweight title in the main event of UFC 193 in one of the biggest upsets in the sport's history.

Holly Holm punches Ronda Rousey. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Holly Holm punches Ronda Rousey. (Photo by Josh Hedges/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)

She wasn't the only one, though.

Holm's manager, Lenny Fresquez said he won six figures by betting on Holm, while bettors around the world who took a flier on the longshot challenge won big. Jay Kornegay, the sports book director at the Westgate in Las Vegas, told the Las Vegas Review-Journal he took four large wagers on Rousey just before the fight began, which helped him to break even on the fight.

Others, though, didn't do so well. Tony Miller, the sports book director at the Golden Nugget, told the newspaper his book had a good day on college football but not on the fight.

Everything we won on college football we gave back on that fight. We got killed on it. It was so lopsided with all underdog money.

Rousey opened as high as minus-2000 at some books, meaning bettors would have had to bet $2,000 in order to win $100 on Rousey. That wasn't worth the risk, but because Holm was a former boxing champion, many bettors took a flier on her. She was at plus-1000 or higher, meaning a $100 bet would have meant a $1,000 return.

The accumulation of those small bets on Holm added up in a big-time way.

Few, though, probably did as well as Fresquez, who told MMA Fighting's Ariel Helwani that he had a big score when Holm finished the champion. He declined to say exactly how much he'd won, but didn't hide the secret that it was more than a lot of people's annual salary.

Of course I did [bet on Holly]. Of course I did. We made a lot of money. Thank you, Vegas, for putting the odds up like that. We got into some really good money. We got into six figures. I'll put it that way.

UFC president Dana White said a rematch makes sense, and Holm said she felt Rousey deserved it and would have no problem giving her one.

If a rematch happens, Kornegay told the Review-Journal that Rousey would go off as slightly better than a 2-to-1 favorite.