Frampton-Molitor, McCloskey-Perez preview
By Scott Gilfoid: Commonwealth and IBF Inter-Continental super bantamweight champion Carl Frampton (14-0, 9 KO’s) will finally be taking a slight step up in competition against #12 WBC Steve Molitor (34-2, 12 KO’s) on September 22nd at the Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom.
This fight should give boxing fans a little glimpse of what Frampton, 25, is made of because the 32-year-old Molitor can actually fight as long as his skin holds together and he doesn’t bleed all over the place causing a stoppage.
I can’t remember the last time I saw Molitor fight where he wasn’t bleeding at some point. Maybe his 4th round TKO loss to Celestino Caballero is the only time I didn’t see Molitor bleeding all over the place, but then again the fight was over so quickly that there wasn’t time enough for Molitor’s blood to flow.
Frampton is a three year pro who really hasn’t faced anyone that you could call remotely a good fighter. I guess his last fight against some guy named Raul Hirales would have to qualify as his best opponent, but that was pretty awful to watch. But what was interesting was how Hirales hit harder than Frampton and had him boxing to try and keep from getting hit. It was a smart move by Frampton because if he had stood and tried to slug with the harder punching Hirales we likely would have seen Frampton taste defeat for the first time. But Hirales show that Frampton doesn’t have a ton of power and that he needs to look for other ways to win when he’s facing a superior puncher.
Molitor is the better boxer by far compared to Frampton, and he’s the much longer reach as well. I see the power as being identical between them. But what could hurt Frampton in this fight is that he won’t be able to fall back on his boxing again if he can’t deal with Molitor’s power, because Molitor will simply out-box him with his longer arms and better skills. As such, Frampton may have to bum rush Molitor to try and get him out of there as fast as possible before Molitor starts punishing him and cutting off all avenues of escape.
In one of the undercard fights will be former Amir Khan victim Paul McCloskey (23-2, 12 KO’s) taking on light welterweight contender Manuel Perez (18-7-1, 4 KO’s) in a fight that the 33-year-old McCloskey can’t afford to lose. He was blasted out in the 10th round by journeyman DeMarcus Corley last May and in his fight before that, McCloskey won a controversial 12 round decision over Breidis Prescott while fighting at home in Belfast.
McCloskey won’t have to worry about getting knocked out by Perez because he can’t really punch. But he does have good boxing skills and he’s definitely good enough to really embarrass McCloskey in this fight which is what I expect him to do. That’s not to say that Perez will be given the decision. I expect McCloskey to win another controversial decision as bad as the Prescott fight.
In other fights on the undercard:
Lee Selby vs. Martin Lindsay
Eamonn O’Kane vs. Craig Windsor Jr
Jamie Conlan vs. TBA
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