Smith plans on outworking Beterbiev on Saturday

By Boxing News - 06/16/2022 - Comments

By Sean Jones: WBO 175-lb champion Joe Smith Jr. let slip his game plan for Saturday night by revealing that he’s going to outwork, outpunch and tire out IBF/WBC champion Artur Beterbiev to force him into the later rounds. The fight will live in ESPN.

Smith (28-3, 22 KOs) notes that he has more experience than the unbeaten knockout artist Beterbiev (17-0, 17 KOs) in fights that have gone into the later rounds, and he’s going to use that to his advantage.

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It makes sense for Smith, 32, to try and take the fight into the second half, given that most of Beterbiev’s contests during his career have gone six rounds or less.

Of Beterbiev’s 17 wins, 12 have been fights that ended within six rounds. When you’re knocking out your opponents as fast as Beterbiev has during his nine-year professional career, you lose out on the opportunity to build your stamina and pick up experience.

It’s not going to be easy for Smith to take Beterbiev into the later rounds of the fight because he will be coming forward full tilt, looking to take him out as quickly as possible on Saturday night.

Unlike Beterbiev’s last opponent Marcus Browne, Smith doesn’t have a good set of wheels, and he will not be able to elude him.

Browne made it to the ninth round because of his excellent mobility, but it’s not going to be as easy for Smith to duplicate that feat without a dog fight.

“I have more experience going into the later rounds than he does, so we’ll see what happens,” said Joe Smith Jr to Fighthype about his advantage in late round experience over Artur Beterbiev.

“I’m here in this division, and I want to face all the champions in this division and become unified,” said Smith when asked why he chose Beterbiev rather than trying to get a fight against Canelo Alvarez.

It’s too bad that Smith only had the WBO 175-lb title to offer because he might have been able to lure Canelo to fight him if he held two world titles.

On the positive side, it’s not too late for Smith to possibly get a fight against Canelo, but he’s going to need to beat Beterbiev and likely WBA champion Dmitry Bivol for that to happen.

I believe my work rate and my punch count can play a big role in this fight where I can stay more busy than him, work around him, and tire him out,” said Smith in revealing part of his game plan for defeating Beterbiev.

“This is a huge opportunity,” said Smith. “Beterbiev is a huge name in boxing. Everyone knows who he is at this point. He has two world titles, and I want those belts.

“I believe this fight is going to be great. You’ve got two big punchers, and I’m just excited to be in there with him. He’s a great name,” said Joe.

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