Mikey Garcia a 20:1 favorite to beat Sergey Lipinets
By Eric Thomas: It’s easy to see why Mikey Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs) picked out IBF light welterweight champion Sergey Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs) to try and capture his 4th division world title tonight at the Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio, Texas.
The odds-makers have Mikey as a huge 20:1 favorite to defeat the 28-year-old Lipinets in their fight on Showtime Boxing. The bettors don’t view this as a competitive fight, which isn’t surprising. Lipinets hasn’t faced high level world class level opposition during his 4-year pro career.
Even when Lipinets did capture the vacant IBF 140 lb. last year in November, he did it against a weak opponent in Akihiro Kondo. The fact that a guy with Lipinets’ limited skills was able to capture a world title at 140 says all that needs to be said about the IBF’s ranking system. It’s a crazy upside down ranking with a limited guys getting ranked high while the more talented ones often finding themselves ranked lower. As Andy Warhol once said, in the future everyone will be famous for 15 minutes. I think Lipinets’ 15 minutes of fame is about up. Mikey is going to dethrone him tonight, and we’ll have a new paper champion.
You won’t be able to call Mikey a true champion because Lipinets is not a good enough fighter to earn Mikey the true respect as a legitimate champion. Once Mikey proves himself at 140 by beating the better fighters in the division like Jose Carlos Ramirez and Regis Prograis, then you can say he’s a legitimate champion at 140. Mikey beating Lipinets won’t prove anything other than he can defeat a guy with an inflated resume.
We probably won’t see Mikey fight any of the good light welterweights though. He plans on moving back down to 135 and trying to put together a fight against WBA champion Jorge Linares if possible. Mikey is all over the place in terms of what he wants to do with his career. He also says he wants to move up to 147 and fight IBF champion Errol Spence Jr., which is a crazy idea. Mikey just wants a straight up title shot against Spence without having to prove himself against some of the top dogs like Shawn Porter or Danny Garcia. Those are the gatekeepers that Mikey should fight to earn a fight with Spence, but we know he won’t. Mikey will be given the red carpet treatment in being given a title shot against Spence that he doesn’t rate.
The co-feature bout on tonight’s Garcia-Lipinets card, between Rances Barthelemy and Kiryl Relikh, figures to be a much better fighter. Barthelemy (26-0, 13 KOs) and Relikh (21-2, 19 KOs) are fighting for the vacant WBA light welterweight title. Barthelemy, 31, is favored to beat Relikh by the like -210 to +175. The odds-makers might be off on this fight though. Barthelemy was given a controversial 12 round decision win over Relikh the last time the two fought each other in May of last year. Barthelemy fought well enough to deserve a loss to Relikh by an 8 rounds to 4 score on Boing News 24’s scoring of the fight. It’s anyone’s what the fight the judges were watching, because Relikh did more than enough to deserve the win in that fight.