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Beterbiev 174 1/2 vs. Yarde 174 1/4 – Official weigh-in results

Image: Beterbiev 174 1/2 vs. Yarde 174 1/4 - Official weigh-in results

By Barry Holbrook: Devasting knockout artist Artur Beterbiev weighed in successfully at 174 1/2 pounds today for his defense of his IBF, WBC & WBO light heavyweight titles live on ESPN+ this Saturday night, January 28th, against WBO mandatory Anthony Yarde.

#1 ranked Yarde (23-2, 22 KOs) weighed in at 174 1/4 lbs and looked bigger than the slightly taller 6’0″ Beterbiev (18-0, 18 KOs).

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Yarde will need to put in the fight of his life to win because he lacks the credentials to pull off a victory against the more experienced Beterbiev, who looks like an unstoppable steamroller at this stage of his professional career.

For Yarde to win, like many say, he must come flying out of the gate from the moment the fight starts and hope to land something big enough to stun Beterbiev.

What’s important is that if Yarde hurts Beterbiev, he will need to go for the finish rather than backing off, hoping to get to him later in the contest.

We saw that with Callum Johnson, who, after badly hurting Beterbiev, putting him on the deck in the second round of their fight in 2018, backed off and wound up getting knocked out in the fourth.

Yarde lacks self-confidence

“I think with Beterbiev; he hasn’t needed to trash-talk anyone in the past. He’s from a particular background. Those guys from Eastern Europe are very, very tough. They don’t indulge in that kind of talk generally,” said Gareth A Davies to talkSPORT Boxing about Artur Beterbiev not getting involved with the back-and-forth bickering that we normally see from fighters.

“The great stars of the world don’t do that from that part of the world. You’ve got two guys that are very heavy-handed. I still see Beterbiev as the favorite,”  Gareth continued. “He acts like the champion. We saw the body language of the champion, and he commanded the press conference.

“I got the sense from Anthony that he was happy to be here. Yes, a happy fighter. I’m not sure that he can have the level of confidence that Beterbiev can have.”

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“100%, he can’t have the same level,” said Spence Oliver about Yarde. “What I’m saying is that some fighters are happy to be here because they’re getting the opportunity, and they’ve not got the self-belief. With Anthony Yarde, he’s got that self-belief.

“He believes he’s going to win, and that’s why I say a happy fighter is a dangerous fighter. Yarde going into this one, he’s happy to be the underdog. There’s no pressure on his shoulders. I’ve seen him in training.

“He’s been in training for some time. This fight was talked about since October of last year, but it never materialized; but he’s always has Beterbiev in his mind, and he fancies the job. Stylistically, Yarde is a great counterpuncher. He’s very heavy-handed,”  said Oliver.

Beterbiev will take fight to Yarde

“He’s got to punch with Beterbiev but also be elusive at times,” said Gareth about Yarde.

“I talked about Yarde about this. If you look at Beterbiev’s last fight, when he boxed Joe Smith Jr in New York. Joe Smith is heavy-handed himself.”

“But more reckless,” said Gareth about Smith Jr.

“Yarde won’t make those mistakes,” said Oliver.

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“Educated pressure,” Gareth said. “You know, that’s what he’s got to do, educated pressure, and he’s stepping up a level, in my view, against a guy who could become a modern great. If you’re a boxing insider, it’s hard to pick Anthony Yarde in this fight unless you’re putting yourself out there. I can see Yarde winning, but I’m not picking him to win.”

“You can’t pick him to win because of the resume of both guys,” said Oliver about the 31-year-old Yarde.

“What I do think is they’ll get in the trenches by round three, and if Yarde finds success, he’ll pull the pressure on Beterbiev,” said Gareth. “I don’t think it’ll be a long fight. “Anthony Yarde needs to try and stop Beterbiev. I don’t think he outboxes him.”

“I think Yarde knows this is a six round fight, that’s how he’s going to approach it, and I believe he goes off from the opening round,” said Oliver. “I think Beterbiev takes fight to Yarde. Yarde tries to box, but if he doesn’t, he stands with Beterbiev, let’s his shots go, rolls the dice, and then he’s going to get eaten up.

“I think at some point, and it could be as early as the second round, Yarde has got to stand there, roll the dice and have a gunfight, and that’s the way I see the fight. I don’t see it being a cagey start,” said Oliver.

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