Intriguing Matchups, Rising Stars, Debuts and Returns, All On Tap This Weekend

I am intrigued………

Mikey Garcia v. Adrien Broner

This will be Garcia’s (36-0 30 KO) first fight at 140 but I’m more intrigued by the matchup than his debut. Broner is a four-time world champion in four different weight classes, Garcia a three-time world champion in three weight classes.

Garcia and Broner (33-2 24 KO) should be boxing at its best. Two highly skilled warriors in a chess match, one looking for the other to make a mistake. I favor Broner’s speed and boxing here; however, he can be countered and that is the one area that Garcia will look to exploit.

In their last fights, Garcia dispatched the highly regarded Dejan Zlaticanin in three rounds, while an injured Broner (Hand injury in Round 1) won a split decision over the tough as nails Adrian Granados.

Broner had issues at 147 and has never lost at 140. Both men have good chins and can box or punch. If Broner comes in “About Boxing” and not “About Billions”, he can do the things that he does to control the fight. If not, Garcia will exploit his weaknesses to capture the win.

Prediction  I’ve liked what I have seen from Broner in his training and the build up, thus a very slight edge to Broner in this one.


Jarrell Miller v. Gerald Washington


Jarrell Miller- Photo Credit-Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

An interesting one here in the bigs. Miller (18-0-1 16 KO) is a tank but will give up the height and reach to the gargantuan Washington (18-1-1 12 KO). I favor Miller’s skill set and believe he can chop down the tree but he can be hit as evident in his matchup with the undersized Donovan Dennis.

The question is, can Washington, who was stopped by Deontay Wilder in February, exploit his advantages? Against Wilder, Washington won a few rounds and did some good work before being stopped but couldn’t sustain his effort. If he can stay committed to popping his jab in Miller’s face to set up some power, he can be successful. If he continues to make Miller reset his attack, he can decrease the chances of being caught by the charging Miller.

We know what we will get from the pugilist with the oxymoronic nickname (Big Baby). Miller will look to move forward at all times and knock Washington’s block off. He’ll need to navigate Washington’s length to be successful.

Prediction As the adage goes, a good big man beats a good little man; however, in this instance, Miller isn’t exactly little. I’ve not seen enough from Washington in his fights to be convinced here. Miller by stoppage.

Rising Stars- 

Katie Taylor  v. Jasmine Clarkson 


Katie Taylor- Photo Credit- Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

Taylor (5-0 3 KO) has plenty of intrigue surrounding her, will be fighting for the first time as a professional across the pond thus making her US debut, but we like her best as a rising star.

Taylor will face Clarkson (4-8) as she continues her rise in the sport. Taylor’s skill set is exceptional. She is a relentless come forward fighter who throws tight combinations, works the body, and has power in both hands.

We’re excited for women’s boxing and Taylor is a big reason why.

Prediction- Taylor by UD



Jermall Charlo v. Jorge Sebastian Heiland 


Jermall Charlo- Photo Credit-Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

Charlo (25-0 19 KO) moves up and makes his debut at 160 against Heiland (29-4-2 16 KO). Heiland does have a KO over Matthew Macklin on his resume and has stopped seven of eight opponents since 2013 but Charlo is unlike any opponent he has faced.

The Texas native is a relentless fighter with bad intentions. A junk yard dog that will hurt you if you make a mistake. If you chose to stay away from his assault, he will out box you while still looking for the fight ending blow.

Prediction- Charlo by stoppage.


Carl Frampton v. Andres Gutierrez

The Jackal is back and this time he is facing a Jaguar. After splitting fights with Leo Santa Cruz, Frampton (23-1 14 KO) is back to face Gutierrez (35-1-1 25 KO).

Gutierrez is no gimme, this kid can box and he can punch. Frampton excels when working on the inside which will be key here if Frampton looks to offset Gutierrez’s 5″ reach.

It will be interesting to see how Frampton will respond entering the ring his first time coming off of a loss. He will surely be energized by fighting again in his beloved Ireland, his first time fighting there since 2015.

Prediction- Gutierrez is going to give Frampton hell and may even drop him but the battle tested warrior will win a hard-fought decision. Frampton by MD.

Victor Ortiz v. Saul Corral 


Victor Ortiz- Photo Credit Andre Turner II/Ringstar Sports

We’ve been here before with Oritz. He says all the right things, he’s learned, he’s back, he’s committed this time, etc… Again for this fight he has done the same. We’ll find out on Sunday.

Corral (25-9 16 KO) has been very active in 2017 as he was in 2016. This will be Corral’s tenth fight since the begining of 2016. He is 6-3 in those fights, losing to very good competition in Josesito Lopez, Sadam Ali, and Mike Alvarado.

On the other end of the spectrum is Ortiz. Issues outside of the ring and a desire to continue in the sport have seen Ortiz only fight seven times in six years. His was stopped in his last fight by Andre Berto in April of 2016.

Prediction-  There is a lot to be said about activity and inactivity in the ring. All the signs point to Ortiz here but we’ll go with the upset . Although Corral has lost when he steps up in competition, time looks to be different.


Frampton Over Quigg By SD


For the first half of his split decision victory over Scott Quigg (31-1-2 23 KO), Carl Frampton (23-0 14 KO), while not overly dominate, controlled the fight.

Using an active jab, slick defense, and timely body shots, Frampton arguably  won at least five out of the first six rounds.

Over the next six, Frampton looked to be wearing down. Quigg started throwing multiple punches, unlike the first half when he looked to be only focused on landing one big shot.

You can credit Quigg’s excellent body work for changing the tone of the fight and making it close down the stretch. Quigg attacked Frampton ‘ s core with work that would have made JCC, Fitzsimmions, Langford, & Armstrong proud.  The right hook to the rib cage was especially impressive and looked to be weakening Frampton.

The tenth was probably the best round of the fight as both men did great work in some toe to toe moments.

Quigg landed his best punch of the fight in the eleventh,  a blistering right hand that stunned Frampton. The Jackal was able to get through the round and came out in the twelfth taking it to Quigg in what was ultimately a close round.

In the end though, it was a case of Quigg starting too late.  Although Quigg  came on,  Frampton was able to make a few of the last six rounds close on his way to a split decision victory

The scores were 116-112 X2 for Frampton and a head scratching 115-113 for Quigg.

With the win, Frampton added Quigg’s WBA bantamweight title to his IBF bantamweight title.

Rigon(deaux) In The New Year


Guillermo Rigondeaux (15-0 10 KO ) overcame his opponent’s height and reach advantage and a seventh round knockdown to stop Japan’s Hisashi Amagasa (28-5-1 19 KO) by  eleventh round TKO in route to retaining his WBO and WBA super bantamweight titles at the Bodymaker Colluseum in Osaka, Japan on the eve of the new year.

Amagasa jumped on Rigondeaux at the opening bell and threw a flurry of punches that were mostly blocked by Rigondeaux gloves. The round proceeded into a feeling out process as Rigondeaux tried to solve his opponent’s six and a half inch height and three inch reach advantage.  

In round two, Rigondeaux, a southpaw, started to find a home for the overhand left which was being set up nicely by his jab. Amagasa’s face was visibly starting to show the effects of The Jackal’s power as he started to swell around both eyes.  In the third round,  Rigondeaux started crouching and fighting low causing Amagasa to negate his own height advantage as he lowered himself to try and land his arsenal on Rigo. Due to Rigondeaux’s superior athleticism,  he parried most of Amagasa’s assault while countering him repeatedly. 

As he did in the first three rounds,  Rigondeaux strategically allowed Amagasa to be the aggressor and move forward as he countered the challenger with a stiff jab and power hooks. Rigondeaux picked up his speed and movement in round four and landed quick shots at his onrushing foe but Amagasa was able to land a few punches of his own and may have had his best round through four. 

To start the fifth,  Rigondeaux landed a stiff straight left that seemed to buckle Amagasa. Sensing he may have hurt his opponent,  Rigondeaux moved forward and went left hand crazy landing several overhand lefts as Amagasa reeled into the ropes.  Amagasa recovered and the action resumed as it had the previous four rounds, Amagasa moving forward and Rigondeaux picking him off with quick jabs and left crosses. 

Rigondeaux controlled the entire sixth round with his movement as he utilized some of the finest footwork you will ever see.

In the seventh, it all seemed to be going well for Rigondeaux until he spun around Amagasa and was caught by a quick right which dropped him with thirty seconds left in the round.  Rigondeaux was up quickly but Amagasa charged the champion and swung wildly landing a solid right that seemed to momentarily stun the champion. As Rigo tried his best to tie up Amagasa he was pushed down to the canvas and it was (incorrectly) ruled a knockdown by referee Mike Ortega. Rigondeaux was up quickly as the round ended. 

Said Rigondeaux, “The first punch which caused the knockdown was not a powerful blow. I was caught off balance and suffered a flash knockdown. I was not hurt, but I had to be on guard as my opponent gained confidence and threw everything at me in that round,”

Energized by his heroics in the seventh, Amagasa went on the attack in the eighth but Rigondeaux calmly countered him repeatedly with straight left crosses and was beginning to sit down on his punches. Again using beautiful lateral movement and parrying punches in the ninth, Rigondeaux controlled all aspects of the round. All of the damage done by his left hand was evident as Amagasa’s right eye was a protruding mass to close the round.

In the tenth, Rigondeaux moved forward as the aggressor and Amagasa was forced to fight going backwards which clearly took him out of his comfort zone.  Rigondeaux dropped Amagasa with a beautifully timed straight left half way through the round.  Amagasa got up but was a little wobbly on his feet. Rigondeaux took his time and walked down Amagasa landing multiple combinations to the bell.

Looking like a beaten fighter entering the eleventh with both eyes closing and the left side of his face swollen , Amagasa did very little as Rigondeaux continued to land just about anything that he threw.  At the close of the round, Amagasa went to his stool where the fight was stopped by his corner.

At the time of the stoppage, Rigondeaux was leading on all cards with scores of, 107-99 X2 and 105-101. This was Rigondeaux’s seventh defense of his WBA and fourth defense of his WBO 122 pound titles. 

Rigondeaux boxed beautifully throughout the fight and was intent on being more active. “The boxing public has been asking for more action, so I delivered” said Rigondeaux.

“I have a lot of skills. On Wednesday night, I showed I can mix it up and, more importantly, that I can close the show in devastating fashion.”

Manager Gary Hyde agreed, “The fans have hinted that they want blood and guts, and Rigo certainly showed he can massacre fighters if needs be.”

On what is next for Rigondeaux,  Hyde stated, “Rigo is looking at forcing the WBA to order the (Scott) Quigg fight. He would like the (Leo) Santa Cruz fight, also, but the guy wants no part of him”

“Santa Cruz is a joke. I will not attend the show,” said Rigondeaux referring to Santa Cruz’s Janury 17 date against Jesus Ruiz  “I have no interest in watching him fighting another soft opponent”

There is so much high level talent here and around this division with Rigondeaux, Carl Frampton, Leo Santa Cruz, Scott Quigg, Vasyl Lomachenko, Nicholas Walters, Abner Mares, that it would make sense to hold a tournament. That would be epic.