How Many People Would it Take to Beat Up a UFC Fighter?

The question has haunted the minds of men for decades – until now.

By tweaking our advanced fight predicting simulator matrix we were able to run a series of trials predicting the hypothetical outcome of a “battle” between a UFC fighter and an average Joe. The following post summarizes our shocking (and disturbing) findings.

DISCLAIMER: The following blog post is intended for comedic purposes only. Our apologies in advance if you are at all offended.

To begin our trials we chose none other than the current light heavyweight champion Jon “Bones” Jones to represent the fighters of the UFC.  It goes without saying that Bones would make bones of at least 4 grown men for sport, which begs the question:  Just how many men WOULD it take to beat up the champ?

Jon "Bones" Jones

Jon “Bones” Jones

With the tweaks to our model in place we began our first trial.  Jones vs. a single man.  Pointless although necessary for estimating the power of an individual in later trials.

The Result: After double checking for human error, the model produced a probability suggesting that the chances of one man beating up Jon Jones is negative 75%.  Further analysis by repeating the trial 10,000 times reveals that Jones is more likely to be hit by a live whale falling from a monsoon than losing a fight against a single man.

Knowing this our next trial used 5 men.

The Result: Immediately apparent in the model output is the exponential power of 5 men fighting together as a team.  After executing a statistically significant number of trials however, the results speak for themselves.

In the worst instance of all trials, one man was able to hit Jones square in the jaw with a full powered haymaker punch.  The man’s hand shattered up to his elbow.  Jones was unaffected.

In fact, our threat detection variant monitoring Jones’ hypothetical heart beat indicates that even under attack from 5 men, Jones has yet to feel threatened.

So we double the damage. 10 men. To spice it up (and to be fair), we also add 2 women. Were all for equal rights, and maybe they’ll have an outlying effect in the model.

The Results: At this point Jones appears to feel threatened. Through observing 20,000 trials we are able to conclude that the additional pressure of fighting 12 people causes Jones to turn into an even more efficient killing machine. The 10 men are dead within an average of 2 minutes, a kill rate of which even North Korea would approve. The only plausible explanation for this slaughter is that Jon Jones is in fact the first black Super Saiyan.

A Super Saiyan

A Super Saiyan

As for the women? Initially programmed to kill him, Jones saves them for last. He proceeds to initiate a Spartacus-style threesome orgy impregnating them both IN EVERY TRIAL. The mans seed appears to resemble a genetic combination of Michael Phelps and Kanye West.

Exhibit B

Exhibit B

Trial 3. No more ****ing around.

Included in this trial are 6 stormtroopers, 30 men, Agent Smith, Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson and Miley Cyrus. After running only one trial we decide to end the experiment. It turns out some questions are better left unanswered..

Goodbye, Mr. Anderson.

Goodbye, Mr. Anderson.

Jones definitely feels danger here. Before going Super Saiyan he places a cell phone call to Joe Rogan. Joe appears moments later with two kettle bells shaped liked monkey skulls which he uses to violently dispatch of the Stormtroopers. He appears to enjoy doing this very much.

Well done Joe, well done.

Well done Joe, well done.

While Jones engages in speedy-blurred-combat with Agent Smith, The Rock kills 15 of the 30 men accidentally by performing a spinerama-attack with a squat rack. The other 15 men synchronously lose control of their bowels and flee. Seeing this – and now done with the Stormtroopers – Joe Rogan chases them down screeching like an ape proclaiming he is the alpha male and yelling about hunting his own food.

In an honorable (read: strategic) move, The Rock decides to let Jones and Agent Smith continue battle. He places the squat rack on his back and begins to perform step ups on a pile of bodies while shouting out his reps in an ancient tribal language.

Then, in a truly unexplainable turn of events, the women from the previous trial appear out of nowhere to aid Jones. They simultaneously give birth to two boys who mature faster than Shia Labeouf into formidable young warriors. They instantly engage Agent Smith in combat next to the champ.

Seriously, what happened to Even Steven?

Seriously, what happened to Even Steven?

Upon seeing his boys grown into healthy young warriors Jones proceeds to end the battle against Agent Smith the one and only way possible: They must both die. He lowers his guard and Agent Smith punches him straight in the heart. Jones feels the cold envelope him as the agent proceeds to consume him in grey virtual ooze. As the transformation completes both men burst into a sonic explosion of light and sound.

Although physically gone, we can sense that Jones has become more powerful than ever before. Joe Rogan has returned and can be heard muttering something about a waste of meat.

Seeing no point in fighting, The Rock and the Jones Jr’s shake hands. The Jones Jr’s claim to be big fans and demand a picture with their hero. He obliges ever so kindly and immediately posts the picture to his Instagram page applying bad-ass custom filters. He also hashtags. #ImTheRock #ImTHESHIT #theseniggasCRAZY #WTFjusthappen?

Wrapping up, The Jones Jr’s politely decline an invitation from Joe Rogan to appear on his podcast citing an unexplainable sense of destiny to seek out a place they only know to be called the Dagobah System.

After all is said and done the only one remaining on the battle field is Dwayne “The Rock” Johnson. Lowering himself to the ground he begins performing a ritual for the dead ensuring their safe passage into the afterlife. Halfway through the ritual he is interrupted by the sound of a goat. He looks over to see Miley Cyrus twerking. Apparently she went unnoticed during the battle and was now looking for attention. The last thing we are able to interpret from the simulator matrix is Dwayne Johnson silencing the goat woman with a menacing People’s Elbow. Getting up he exclaims, “It’s about time that b**** stopped twerking!”

Take that Miley!

Take that Miley.

As for the real answer to our question? We think Jones could take out you and everyone you know and still make it home for dinner.

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Fight Predictor Model Update, May, 2013

In terms of model accuracy, April was a decent month for The Fight Predictor. Over the 22 fights predicted, our prediction record was 13-9 and we made a profit at 3/4 events. Unfortunately, UFC on Fuel TV: Mousasi vs Latifi went terribly as we were wrong on all 4 fights and all 4 bets. We spent the rest of the month trying to scrape back the money we had lost, but came out just negative on the month. 13 out of 22 fights won puts us at an accuracy of around 60%. Our tests on historical data show we should be hitting close to 80% accuracy. Therefore, since we have added significant amounts of data since our last model update (Prior to UFC 157 in February) we decided it’s time for another update.

One thing that we felt was important to consider is the differences between weight classes. For example, we have seen that takedown accuracy is an extremely important variable in determining who is going to win a fight. By splitting it up into weight classes and holding all other variables constant, our results show that in heavier weight classes (above lightweight), each 1% increase in takedown accuracy increases a fighters chance of winning by 0.1%. In the lighter weight classes, each 1% increase in takedown accuracy increases a fighters chance of winning by 0.4%. Our analysis shows other differences between the lighter and heavier weight classes as well as specific relationships in certain weight classes. For example, both heavyweight and middleweight have unique height explanatory variables.

Another couple variables that have become significant in this model, but weren’t before are “is the fighter a southpaw?” and “is the fighter fighting in their home country?” What we see from these variables is that a left handed fighter fighting a right handed fighter is 5% more likely to win. Fighting in your home country, on the other hand, actually makes a fighter 8% less likely to win. This is likely due to the complacency that comes with being around friends and family. Frank Mir spoke before his fight vs Daniel Cormier about how leaving home really allowed to train to what he felt was his maximum potential.

We tested our model by going back in time and removing observations. Then we recalculate the model to see whether its predictions are accurate to what actually happened in the fight. Over 10,000 observations, here is our output:

Total Correctness: 78.71%

Heavyweight: 85%
Light-Heavyweight: 94%
Middleweight: 83%
Welterweight: 76%
Lightweight: 60%
Featherweight: 84%
Bantamweight: 76%
Flyweight: 100%

This can be compared to our calculations in our article on parlays back in February. It is worth noting however, that even though our accuracy dropped slightly overall, the additional fights in our data should help with our future accuracy.

It is also interesting to note that in our Georges St Pierre vs Anderson Silva super fight article the model had Georges St Pierre as the heavy favourite to defeat “The Spider.” With our new model however, the output is 50.07% for St Pierre. That means this fight is basically as close as it could possibly get and adds more intrigue to the potential match-up.

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Next event is UFC on FX: Belfort vs Rockhold coming up in 3 weeks on May 18. We will have our early picks for that event as well as our prediction of the main event of UFC 160: Silva vs Velasquez, coming in the next week or so.

UFC on Fox 7: Henderson vs Melendez Full Predictions

UFC on Fox 7 Poster: Melendez vs Henderson

We already posted our early betting picks for this event and with weigh ins just complete making the fights official, we are ready to do our full event predictions. The facebook prelims for this event get underway at 4pm ET, the FX prelims begin at 5pm ET and the main card begins live on Fox (and Sportsnet in Canada) at 8pm ET. All the action comes to us live from the HP Pavilion in San Jose, California.

For this event, to avoid getting burned and to follow our post on the use of parlays we will be placing one large parlay on a variety of favourites at this event as well as 4 straight bets. We will begin here with the 2 other straight bets not mentioned in our early picks article posted earlier in the week.

First off, our statistical model has Strikeforce crossover and undefeated fighter, Lorenz Larkin defeating 4 fight UFC vet Francis Carmont. Realistically, this is a very difficult fight to call. Both fighters have had a lot of success lately, Carmont winning 9 straight over the last few years with an impressive 7 of those by way of submission or TKO. While Larkin is technically 13-0 and undefeated, he does have one KO defeat that was later overturned because his opponent, Mohammed Lawal tested positive for performance enhancing drugs. Lawal though, is probably of a higher caliber than anyone Carmont has fought so it makes the job of predicting this fight extremely difficult. When we look deeper into the numbers, Carmont has a significant height and reach advantage to Larkin (6’3″ vs 5’11” and 78″ vs 71.5″). What Larkin lacks in reach though, he makes up for in fighting ability with 3.4 strikes landed per minute and 67% takedown accuracy vs Carmont’s 2.7 strikes landed per minute and 45% takedown accuracy. A 1.5 unit bet on Larkin at 2.24 to 1 is where we decided to put our money for this fight.

Secondly, our model has Anthony Njokuani defeating Roger Bowling in the second fight of the Facebook prelims. Njokuani is 2-3 in the UFC since joining following UFC’s absorbtion of WEC and is coming off a loss to Rafael Dos Anjos at UFC on Fuel TV: Munoz vs Weidman in July of last year. Bowling, on the other hand, has had very limited success in his mma career so far. He seems to be able to defeat low level competition, but loses when facing opponents with any name value whatsoever. Bowling is another of the Strikeforce crossovers and realistically, he shouldn’t win this fight. Looking into the stats, Bowling is shorter, has a smaller reach, lands less strikes, absorbs more strikes and is less accurate with his takedowns. Realistically, there is little reason to believe Bowling can defeat Njokuani. Therefore, we placed a 1 unit bet on Njokuani at 1.64 to 1.

Other than that, our picks for the rest of the night are dominated by heavy favourites. As stated previously, we have Daniel Cormier defeating Frank Mir and at 1.25 to 1, we don’t see a lot of value in placing a straight bet. We have Jordan Mein defeating Matt Brown on 1 months rest and to kick off the main card. Mein sits at 1.33 to 1, so we have placed him in our parlay. Next we have Chad Mendes (who has gone relatively untested since losing to Aldo at UFC 142) defeating Darren Elkins at a paltry 1.16 to 1. Finally, we have Joseph Benavidez defeating Darren Uyenoyama at 1.2 to 1.

Because our model showed strong confidence in all of these outcomes (above 80%), the expected value of parlaying all the outcomes is much higher than simply placing single bets. Therefore, we placed a 1.5 unit bet on Cormier over Mir, Mein over Brown, Mendes over Elkins and Benavidez over Uyenoyama at 2.31 to 1.


Henderson over Melendez. 2 unit at 1.41 to 1
Thomson over Diaz. 1 unit at 2.66 to 1
Larkin over Carmont. 1.5 unit at 2.24 to 1
Njokuani over Bowling. 1 unit at 1.64 to 1
Cormier, Mein, Mendes, Benavidez over Mir, Brown, Elkins, Uyenoyama. 1.5 units at 2.31 to 1

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UFC on Fuel TV 8: Silva vs Stann (AKA UFC Japan) Results

It was a great night for our model as the fighters took to the cage in Saitama, Japan. Some of the fights dragged on a little bit, but there was also an action packed main event and a slug fest co-main event. Overall though, we walked away with a 4.99 unit profit and a 5-1 record. A great showing and brings our record to 10-3 in the last 2 events.

In the main event, we had Wanderlei Silva defeating Brian Stann. We were in the minority with this pick for sure, but it paid off as the fight turned in to just the sort of brawl Wanderlei likes. The first round was absolute madness with both fighters landing and dropping each other at various points. Stann left the round looking worse for wear, but also finished the round on top possibly securing the points win. In the second round it was a little slower, but more of the same until Wanderlei clipped Stann with a punch and took home the victory. This fight won us 2.4 units.

In the co-main event, we had Stefan Struve to defeat Mark Hunt. At times the fight looked like it could go either way, but Hunt proved that even when he is tired he still packs a mean punch when he was able to break Struve’s jaw with a left in the third round. This fight lost us 1 unit.

In a very debatable decision, but great for us and the model, Diego Sanchez defeated Takanori Gomi. The decision won us 0.38 units, but Takanori Gomi seems like he could be a model breaker as we lost on him when he faught Mac Danzig on November 10, 2012.

In our last bet of the main card, Yushin Okami was able to use his wrestling and grappling to mitigate Hector Lombard. It wasn’t dominance, but it was enough to earn him the split decision victory (tons of those on this card!) and brought us home a nice 1.85 units.


Silva defeats Stann. +2.4 units
Hunt defeats Struve. -1.0 units
Sanchez defeats Gomi. +0.38 units
Okami defeats Lombard. +1.85 units
Tavares defeats Fukuda. +0.87 units
Mizugaki defeats Caraway. +0.49 units

Event Result: +4.99 units, an 83% return on the 6 units bet

We will be back with our UFC 158 picks later this week or early the following week. Our model is on a 10-3 run in the last 2 events, laying some credence to its accuracy.