On this weeks podcast me and Riku spoke about all his weeks weeks boxing news including World Boxing Super Series Review, Adam vs Smith confirmed, Wilder’s demolition of Dom Breazeale and discuss PPV vs Subscription.
As i sit here writing this article i am watching Matchroom’s Midweek NextGen show at York Hall which will be headlined by Luke Watkins vs Laurence Okolie , a fantastic fight with two young guys who have a great opportunity to to make a big impression on prime time sky sports . Not only is the main event a good fight but Eddie Hearn has made some fantastic match ups on the undercard in a sold out venue on a Wednesday night it really is fantastic promoting , a breath of fresh air after the week Hearn’s rival Frank Warren has had .
Last week I wrote an article called “Why are boxing fans treated with discontent ” which seemed to go down really well with most that read it but little did i know that the best example of this discontent was going to come a few days AFTER i had published . On Sunday the news broke that Billy Joe Saunders vs Martin Murray was cancelled after Saunders pulled out with injury for a second time ……but hey all you people that bought a ticket’s and booked hotels , travel etc to see Saunders vs Murray don’t expect a refund as the show will still be on , just not the main event you paid for .
Rumour has it that this show had only sold around 3000 tickets but it has to asked what was Frank thinking when this fight was made ? It was a fight that nobody was asking for . Since the turn of the year Warren has had nearly as many show’s or fights postponed or cancelled as he has go ahead , it’s actually at the point now were i would advise people not to buy tickets to his shows , and as a boxing fan that really pains me and i would ask what the BBBofC think about this as again fans are being hit in the pocket , not to mention fighters who have paid for full training camps .
I can’t help think that BT Sport have got to be questioning there own decision to partner with Frank Warren to launch boxing on there top class sports platform . Whilst Hearn seem’s to moving on from strength to strength , putting on NextGen shows that could match some of Warren’s card’s , Warren seems to be staggering along like an old dog waiting to be put put his misery .
The term “this fighter is at a crossroads” is a little over used in boxing but for me this really is the best way to describe the fight for both boxers when Billy Joe Saunders will defend his WBO Middleweight title against David Lemieux this weekend in Canada . For the winner of this bout lies the potential big money fight against either GGG or Canelo , for the loser i can only see them going one way ……..down .
Billy Joe Saunders:
Billy Joe Saunders (or BJS) is a man who looks to have fell in love with boxing all over again after a very troubled couple of years . Years which has seen him struggle with his weight and motivation to fight and this nearly came back to haunt the World Champion when he very luckily got a gift decision Artur Akavov in Paisley , a fight in which we attended . That fight seemed to be the wake up call BJS needed since then he has teamed up with Dominic Ingle , moving himself away from bad influences of before and doing his camps up in Sheffield , which has got him into the best shape of his career . Billy has always been a very talented boxer who uses the full ring to his advantage and with his quick hands and slick movement it sees opponents get frustrated and make mistakes which he exploits . BJS is not is not renowned for his power which could be a factor here as Lemieux will not respect what’s coming back at him so Saunders will need to make sure he’s switched on from start to finish as Lemieux can hit hit like a donkey kicks . One thing that has always raised question about BJS so his gas tank which see’s him easier to pin down in the later round of the fight which is exactly what David Lemieux will be counting on , the result of this fight could come down to how BJS manages his gas tank so keep your eye peeled for that .
David Lemieux :
David Lemieux is a massive name in Canada and has the backing to prove that , with it being rumoured that BJS will be paid $3m for going to Canada . He is a massive name for good reason as Lemieux has fantastic power in his right hand , not to say his left is weak , far from it which makes his style very fan friendly . Lemieux is a come forward fighter but that might be his undoing as he is coming up against a skilled a boxer , a style which we have seen give him problems in the past as Lemieux has a very basic upright style which seems tailor made for BJS . After his KO loss to GGG David Lemieux has worked hard to get back in position for a title shot and with his home crowd behind him and being the more powerful of the two i think that would make him favourite with the bookies in this fight , but rushing in and swinging isn’t going to work for him , i hope Lemieux can mix it up a bit .
Although both these guys are the same age at 28 it seems that Lemieux does have more miles on the clock , pretty much due to BJS being inactive . This fight is really close to call as its a boxer against a puncher and in this case i think you have to pick Saunders but not by much . Lemieux is the bigger puncher and the more aggressive of the two but i do find his style so basic and BJS will be to elusive for him . That’s not to say this fight is a far gone conclusion , if Lemieux can trap BJS on the ropes Saunders could find himself in big trouble as Lemieux has real power . My pick is BJS to take it on the cards but I wouldn’t be surprised if Billy gets screwed on the cards also . Billy is going to have to make sure he wins this fight clearly.