Errol Spence Jr. vs. Lamont Peterson next Saturday
By Jim Dower: Errol Spence Jr. (22-0, 19 KOs) will be fighting on Showtime Boxing next Saturday night on January 20th in his first defense of his IBF welterweight title against former 2 division world champion Lamont ‘Havoc’ Peterson (35-3-1, 17 KOs) at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. The televised start time for the Spence-Peterson card on Showtime is at 9:00 p.m. ET.
This is a fight where Spence has to show that he’s got the talent to be the next star in the 147lb. division. There’s a lot of hype surrounding Spence, but he’s not shown that he deserves to positive news from the boxing media.
Spence has some issues briefly against his last opponent Kell Brook before he took over the fight in round 7 after the British fighter suffered an eye injury. Spence must beat Peterson for him to eventually get a unification fight against WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith Thurman.
Spence looked good in his fights before the Brook fight. Spence has wins over Chris Van Heerden, Chris Algieri, Leonard Bundu, Phil Lo Greco, Samuel Vargas and Alejandro Barrera.
Spence has been slow in getting back into the ring since winning the IBF 147 lb. title last year in beating Kell Brook on May 27. Spence wanted to fight earlier than this, but he had to wait until his management found him an opponent for fight. The 33-year-old Peterson isn’t a great option for Spence to be fighting, but he is a former 2 division world champion and he only recently vacated his WBA welterweight title in October.
Peterson has a name and the talent for him to be viewed by the boxing fans as a decent opponent for Spence to be fighting. Spence is heavily favored to win the fight despite Peterson only having been beaten on 3 occasions during his entire 14-year pro career. The fans want to see Spence fighting guys like WBA/WBC welterweight champion Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman, Terence Crawford, Danny Garcia, Jeff Horn and Shawn Porter.
Peterson’s star is fading since his 12 round majority decision loss to Danny Garcia in April 2015. It was kind of a controversial defeat for Peterson, but he didn’t show much ambition in that fight until the last 4 rounds of the fight. Where Peterson’s career really came off the tracks is 5 years ago when he was stopped in the 3rd round by Lucas Matthysse in May 2013.
That’s where Peterson lost a lot of boxing fans, as he came into that fight with recent wins over Amir Khan and Kendall Holt. Matthysse seemed to surprise Peterson with his big power shots on the inside. Peterson had the wrong game plan for the Matthysse fight, and he paid the price in getting knocked down 3 times and stopped in the 3rd round.
On the televised portion of the undercard, IBF World lightweight champion Robert Easter Jr. (20-0, 14 KOs) will be defending his title against former WBA super featherweight champion Javier Fortuna (33-1-1, 23 KOs).
Also on the card is light heavyweight Marcus Browne battling battling Francy Ntetu in a 10 round bout, heavyweight Adam Kownacki fighting Iago Kiladze in a 10 round fight. Middleweight contender Sergey Derevyanchenko fights an opponent still to be determined.