Saturday, December 4, 2021

Boxing Challenge

  The boxing challenge is cut in half between Saturday and Sunday this weekend and since Ohio State will not be playing Saturday in an unexpected circumstance, I've decided to make two posts for previews.

DAZN has the biggest fight as WBC lightweight champion Devin Haney takes center stage from Las Vegas as he defends the only title not held by new champion George Kambosos against former IBF junior lightweight champion Joseph Diaz.

Haney defeated his biggest name foe in his last fight against former three-division champion Jorge Linares and despite winning a wide unanimous decision, Linares won the final three rounds and badly hurt a stumbling Haney late in the tenth round to create a few questions at least about Haney's stamina and chin against top competition.

I'm not sure Diaz is the fighter to test the weak chin theory though as Diaz was never a big puncher at 126 or 130 pounds and despite his aggressive style, Diaz will have to outland Haney in order to win this fight.

Diaz appeared to be toxic after dropping his 130-pound title on the scales and then barely escaping with a draw against Shavkat Rakimov but took advantage of an unexpected opportunity against Javier Fortuna (Ryan Garcia dropping out) to win a unanimous decision, a minor title, and the chance to fight Haney for the real WBC title.

Haney should have more than enough to defeat Diaz, who won't quit coming forward and will make Haney work for the win but Haney is the natural fighter at this weight, the bigger puncher, and the more well-rounded fighter.

It should be an interesting fight and if Diaz can keep from falling too far behind on the scorecards in the first half of the fight, the second half could be very intriguing.

Earlier Saturday, a rematch between England's two top veteran light heavyweights between Lyndon Arthur and Anthony Yarde from their fight last December with Arthur winning a split decision.

The winner could be in line for a title fight in 2022 with both fighters being ranked in the top ten of the sanctioning bodies with Arthur ranked first by the WBO and third by the IBF and Yarde 5th in the WBC ratings and 9th by the IBF.

Yarde was the strong favorite entering their first fight but Arthur managed to slow the fight down and boxed from the outside to grab the upset nod.

WBC Lightweight Title. 12 Rds 
Devin Haney vs Joseph Diaz
Both: Haney Unanimous Decision

Light Heavyweights. 12 Rds
Lyndon Arthur vs Anthony Yarde
R.L: Yarde KO 7
TRS: Arthur Split Decision

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