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Josh Taylor predicts KO of Ivan Baranchyk

Image: Josh Taylor predicts KO of Ivan Baranchyk

By Tim Royner: WBC Silver light welterweight champion Josh ‘The Tartan Tornado’ Taylor (14-0, 12 KOs) says he’ll knockout IBF 140 lb champion Ivan Baranchyk (19-0, 12 KOs) if he comes to fight in their semifinal fight in the World Boxing Super Series tournament on May 18 at The SSE Hydro, in Glasgow, Scotland.

Taylor, 28, notes that this is going to be a lot tougher fight physically in terms of punishment than his previous fight in the WBSS quarterfinal against American Ryan Martin on November 3. Martin threw almost no punches, and was very robotic and timid. Taylor had his way of being the only one that was letting his hands go in the fight.

This fight figures to be the toughest match of 2012 Olympian Taylor’s four-year pro career. Last June, Taylor struggled to beat former WBC light welterweight champion Viktor Postol by a 12 round unanimous decision. Although Taylor ended up getting the victory by the wide scores of 117-110, 118-110 and 119-108, the fight was much closer than that. Boxing News 24 had Taylor winning by 2 points. It was that close. The fight took place in Taylor’s backyard at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, so that would obviously account for the wide scores in his favor. The fight showed that Taylor has a lot of flaws in his game, and that’s not as good as some boxing fans think he is. Taylor looked barely better than Postol, who isn’t the same guy that he once was at 35. It’s fair to say that a younger version of Postol would have beaten Taylor soundly. When you look at that fight, it’s easy to imagine Taylor losing to Baranchyk, as well as Regis Prograis and possibly even Kiryl Relikh.

“He’s a great fighter, very tough, very strong. He comes forward. He puts the pressure on,” said Josh Taylor to Boxing Social in talking about his opponent Ivan Baranchyk, who he’ll be fighting on May 18 in Glasgow, Scotland. “It’s a fight. If he wants to get dirty, I’ll get dirty as well. I think it’s going to be a lot more physical fight than it was with Ryan [Martin]. That one was more technical with skill. I think he’s going to put the pressure on, and hit me low on the inside and use his dirty tactics inside. But it’s up to me not to let him do that. I think I would fair well at close quarters. I think I can out-fight him as well. It will be a more physical fight. It will be a tougher fight. He’s going to walk forward and put the pressure on, and I love that, because it opens him up for me to hit him with some beauties, and I will,” Taylor said.

Baranchyk impressed a lot of boxing fans with his recent seventh round cut stoppage win over Anthony Yigit (21-1-1, 7 KOs) last October in their quarterfinal fight. Although Baranchyk showed good punching power, aggressiveness and a high work rate, he was getting hit a lot by Yigit in that fight. It turned out to be a lot tougher fight than many boxing fans had thought it would be. They felt going in that the 26-year-old Baranchyk would have too much power for Yigit to deal with. It was supposed to be a cut and dried victory for Baranchyk, but that failed to happen. Baranchyk had to work hard in that fight for him to eventually score a stoppage. A lot of fighters wouldn’t have been willing to absorb the amount of punishment that the previously unbeaten Yigit was willing to take. If Taylor is forced to dig deep to try and win under the circumstances in absorbing a beating from Baranchyk in order to win, he’ll be in bad shape in having to face an even bigger offensive threat in Prograis. That would be the wrong type of fighter for the 5’10” Taylor to be fighting after a grueling 12 round war against Baranchyk.

“If he tries to box me, there’s no way he can beat me,” Taylor said about Baranchyk. “There’s no way he’s going to beat me that way as well. There’s no way he’s going to beat me by boxing. So he kind of has to put that fight on me. He has to put the pressure on. If he does that, I love that, because I’ll hit him with the kitchen sink, and I’ll knock him out. If he puts the pressure on, I’ll knock him out,” Taylor said.

Baranchyk won’t try and box Taylor, that’s for sure. He’s going to be on the attack against the slightly over 28-year-old Taylor from start to finish. Baranchyk has no choice but to come forward to try and knock Taylor out. Having seen the way some of Taylor’s other fights have been scored when he’s fighting in Glasgow, it’s not a wise move for anyone to come into that venue thinking they can beat Josh by a 12 round decision. Baranchyk will be shooting for a knockout from round one, because if it goes the full 12, he could find himself in the same position Viktor Postol was in with him losing by a wide margin to Taylor.

“I expect [Regis] Prograis to come through that one [against Kiryl Relikh], and I expect to see him in the final,” Taylor said.

Regis Prograis (23-0, 19 KOs) will be meeting up with WBA World light welterweight champion Kiryl Relikh in the semifinal of the WBSS 140 lb tournament. The tournament organizers have yet to announce a date for the Prograis vs. Relikh fight, but suffice it to say, it’ll likely be around the same time as the Taylor vs. Baranchyk fight. Prograis has been out of the ring since his 12 round unanimous decision win over Flanagan last October in the WBSS quarterfinal. Since it’s already been four months since Prograis last fought, it’s not likely that the WBSS tournament organizers would have him wait beyond May before scheduling his fight with Relikh. They can’t have Prograis sitting inactive for an entire 12 months waiting for them to setup his semifinal fight against Relikh. Prograis will be a really hard fight for Taylor due to his punching power, boxing skills, and his overall toughness. If Taylor wants to get in a shootout with Prograis, he would be sorry for having done so later.

“I would love to fight him, why not? After this tournament, if he wants to come over I’ll give him a wee spanking as well,” Taylor said about Adrien Broner.

A fight between Taylor and Broner isn’t likely to happen anytime soon. If Taylor wins the World Boxing Super Series tournament, then he’ll have a chance to potentially get a fight against Broner, but it would only happen if Adrien has exhausted all the big money fights with Premier Boxing Champions. Right now, Broner has a lot of options in front of him with possible fights with Keith ‘One Time’ Thurman, Errol Spence Jr., Danny Garcia, Amir Khan, Kell Brook, Shawn Porter and a rematch with Jessie Vargas. Broner doesn’t need to fight someone like Josh Taylor. That fight wouldn’t sell in the U.S, being that Taylor isn’t a household name with the casual boxing fans over there. Broner would be a tough fight for Taylor if he came forward and let his hands go. That’s a big IF though, because Broner conserves his energy, and doesn’t let his hands go to allow him to beat some of his better opponents.

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