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Beterbiev-Barrera purse bid scheduled for Feb.2

Artur Beterbiev Roman Gonzalez

By Allan Fox: The International Boxing Federation has scheduled a purse bid for the #1 IBF light heavyweight position between #2 IBF Artur Beterbiev (11-0, 11 KOs) and #9 IBF Sullivan Barrera (18-1, 13 KOs) at the IBF’s headquarters on February 2. Beterbiev’s promoter Yvon Michel and Main Events, the promoter for Barrera, will be in attendance.

Beterbiev and Barrera will be fighting to decide who will be the mandatory challenger to IBF light heavyweight champion Andre Ward. Beterbiev, 31, has been knocking out everyone he’s faced since turning pro several years ago.

Barrera was beaten by Andre Ward in 2016 in March. Barrera turned things around in his last fight in redeeming himself with a 7th round knockout win over Vyacheslav Shabranskyy. The fight was viewed by boxing fans as a 50-50 affair going into the match last December, but Barrera turned out to be a lot better than the 29-year-old Ukrainian fighter in stopping him in round 7.

After the way Beterbiev looked in his last fight in stopping Isido Ranoni Prieto in round 1 last December, it’s going to be really tough on Barrera. He’s going to need to come up with some kind of strategy to deal with Beterbiev’s punching power, and pinpoint accuracy.

Beterbiev is going to be going after Barrera. It should be a great fight, and the first true test of Beterbiev’s career. Can Beterbiev take a big shot without getting hurt? I think we’re going to find out when the two of them square off. We’re also going to see how well Barrera takes a heavy shot, because he’s only faced one big puncher during his career in Shabranskyy. Beterbiev is a huge upgrade for Barrera both in talent and power.

Beterbiev could be the future for the 175lb division if he gets past Barrera and Andre Ward. Of all the fighters in the light heavyweight division, Beterbiev appears to have the best combination of boxing skills, power and inside fighting ability to unseat Ward if he doesn’t retire first.

Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez starts training camp for Srisaket Sor Rungvisai

WBC super flyweight champion Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (46-0, 38 KOs0 opened up his training camp on Monday to get ready for his March 18 title defense against Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (41-4-1, 38 KOs) on the undercard of the Gennady “GGG” Golovkin vs. Daniel Jacobs card at Madison Square Garden in New York.

The Gonzalez-Rungvisai fight is the co-feature bout on the Golovkin-Jacobs card. It’s a basic fight for good entertainment for the boxing fans, but it’s not a particularly interesting one like the Gonzalez vs. Carlos Cuadras fight. Rungvisai hasn’t gone out of his way to fight a lot of quality fighters during his career despite him having a flashy 41-4 record. The vast majority of Rungvisai’s wins have come against fighters with limited talent and poor records.
The start time for the Golovkin vs. Jacobs card is at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO PPV.

Gonzalez, 29, is rated #1 in Ring Magazine’s pound-for-pound ratings. He’s captured world titles in three divisions, and looked next to unbeatable up until his close 12 round decision win over Cuadras last September.

The Nicaraguan Gonzalez will be training in Costa Rica. It’s important for Gonzalez to beat Rungvisai, because he’s got a rematch against Cuadras that will be taking place later this year. It’s unclear how many times Gonzalez and Cuadras will fight each other. You’ve got to figure that there won’t be any point in Gonzalez fighting Cuadras a third time if he beats him again.

It’s nice that the two of them are fighting each other again, but it seems kind of pointless for them to keep fighting after the second time. It might not be a good thing for Cuadras to be seen losing to Gonzalez three or four times. It would be better for Cuadras to lick his wounds after he gets beaten for a second time by Gonzalez, and then move forward to defeating some of the other champions in the super flyweight division if he can.

“Sor Rungvisai is a very tough fighter who wants my title,” Gonzalez said via espn.com. “His fighting style suits me, however. I have to be careful because of his power. I have all the tools to beat him. He has power but not much else, but I also have to watch for possible head-butts.”

The 30-year-old Rungvisai fought Cuadras in 2013, but lost the fight. Cuadras thinks that Rungvisai could beat Gonzalez. It’s doubtful that he will though. If Rungvisai can’t beat Cuadras, then there’s little chance that he’ll do much against Gonzalez other than lose. The boxing fans can only hope that Rungvisai at least puts up a good fight before losing.

“I have no problem giving Carlos Cuadras a rematch, but right now my focus is on Sor Rungvisai who is my mandatory for the WBC.”

It’s interesting that Gonzalez is talking about Cuadras. That seems to be the fight that the boxing fans want see rather than the Gonzalez-Rungvisai fight. However, Gonzalez has no choice in the matter, as the World Boxing Council ordered the fight due to the fighter from Thailand being his mandatory.

This is a good deal for Gonzalez to be fighting once again on an undercard of Golovkin. Without being able to fight on his undercards, Gonzalez might have had a harder time getting widespread exposure to the U.S boxing fans. He’s become known in a real hurry thanks to his fights being packaged with Golovkin’s. At the same time, Golovkin has been able to get more boxing fans watching his card due to the fans showing a lot of interest in Roman Gonzalez’s fights in the U.S.


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