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Abraham vs. Oral on Saturday – Boxing Preview

By Erik Schmidt: Unbeaten IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham (29-0, 23 KO’s) will be fighting in a stay busy fight against German Mahir Oral (25-1, 10 KO’s) on Saturday night at the Max Schmeling Halle, in Berlin, Germany. Abraham, 29, has made it a habit of taking on soft opposition since capturing the International Boxing Federation middleweight title four years ago in a 5th round stoppage of Kingsley Ikele in December 2005.

Since then, it’s been rare that Abraham has fought anyone with a pulse. Indeed, in the entire round years that Abraham has held the IBF title, he’s only fought one opponent, Edison Miranda, that I felt was credible and worthwhile for boxing fans to see the fight. All the rest have been pretty much just stay busy fights against soft opposition.

Abraham fought poorly in his last fight against Lajuan Simon, winning by a lopsided decision on the German judges’ scorecards, but barely nicking the fight on many of the other scorecards of many the boxing experts that saw the fight.

I personally saw the fight as a draw. Abraham only fought hard the last 20 seconds of every round and coasted during the first two and half minutes of each round. There were rumors later on that Abraham had struggled to make the 160 pound weight and had been forced to strip off a massive amount of weight in the last two weeks before the fight.

That’s all well and good, but he still looked incredibly poor and didn’t look good enough to get the win against Simon. This Saturday night, Abraham again finds himself in with another over-matched opponent in the 29-year-old Oral, who up until now has fought largely no one other than journeyman and C class opponents.

Oral’s ranking, number #11 in the IBF, seems rather curious since he’s fought no one close to being good enough to get such a high ranking. I’ve seen Oral fight on a couple of occasions and haven’t been impressed with him. He has little power and mostly jabs and throws weak combinations.

Unless Abraham looks completely exhausted from having to make weight, this should be an easy knockout or lopsided decision victory for Abraham. It’s unfortunate that Abraham has chosen to fight Oral rather than someone more deserving like Giovanni Lorenzo, his number #1 challenger in the IBF, or Roman Karmazin, ranked number #3.

Even Fulgencio Zuniga, ranked #15, Billy Lyell, ranked #12 or the number #9 ranked Peter Quillen would all be much better choices than Oral. But then again each of them would have an excellent chance of beating Abraham, which is why they probably weren’t selected for a fight in the first place.

The way that Abraham in his past three fights, he’s vulnerable to being beaten by a lot of the top 15 contenders. I think his day is done at middleweight and he needs to move out of the weight class to super middleweight as soon as possible or else risk losing.

It won’t be easy to beat him because the fights would take place in Germany, but sooner or later Abraham will lose because he no longer can fight hard for three minutes of round and is just looking to steal rounds by fighting hard in the last seconds of the rounds.

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