When likely voters were asked “just for fun,” which candidate would win in a fistfight, 58 percent said Obama to 22 percent for Romney. Twenty percent had no opinion.

Esquire magazine and Yahoo! News commissioned the survey through Langer Research Associates. It has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percentage points. Slightly more Democrats were polled, according to the crosstabs.

It showed a close race among likely voters, in keeping with other polling, with Obama taking 50 percent to Romney’s 46, within the margin of error.

But asked which candidate they would bet on, in a hypothetical gamble, Obama was the odds-on favorite with 57 to Romney’s 21 percent among likely voters.

Esquire and Yahoo! News have promised to share further results, with the potential for more fist fighting action, over the following weeks.