Paul McCloskey vs. Manuel Perez on Frampton-Molitor undercard on September 22nd
By William Mackay: Former EBU light welterweight champion Paul McCloskey (23-2, 12 KO’s) will be facing #9 WBA Manuel Perez (18-7-1, 4 KO’s) in a make or break fight on the undercard of the Carl Frampton vs. Steve Molitor fight at the Odyssey Arena, Belfast, Northern Ireland, United Kingdom.
McCloskey, 33, has lost two out of his last three fights and is coming off of a 10th round TKO loss to DeMarcus Corley last May in a fight that McCloskey was hurt in a few times. McCloskey fought well at times but ultimately couldn’t handle Corley’s power and was finally stopped.
You can make a strong argument that McCloskey should have lost his last three fights because his 12 round decision win over Breidis Prescott last September was a highly questionable one. The fight took place in Belfast, and it just looked like McCloskey should have lost the fight.
Perez, 28, has been fighting really well as of late winning his last two fights. He was beaten by Mercito Gesta in September of last year, but Perez well enough to deserve the decision. I had Perez beating Gesta by four rounds, and that’s how good he looked in that fight. Perez hasn’t been soundly beaten since he was stopped by Brandon Rios in October 2009 in a 7th round TKO defeat and then beaten by a lopsided 10 round decision to Diego Magdaleno in April 2010.
If McCloskey can’t get past Perez, then he needs to think about retiring. McCloskey doesn’t have the power to compete against the best in the world at 140, and he’ll be very lucky if he can get past Perez without being given a hometown decision. Hopefully, we won’t see another controversial decision given to McCloskey like the one he got over Prescott.
On the same card will be the following fights:
Carl Frampton vs. Steve Molitor
Lee Selby vs. Martin Lindsay
Eamonn O’Kane vs. TBA
Khalid Yafai vs. TBA
Scott Cardle vs. TBA
Martin J Ward vs. TBA
Dee Walsh vs. TBA
Jamie Conlan vs. TBA
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