Ahead of the Deontay Wilder vs Gerald Washington WBC heavyweight title fight this weekend lets take a look at the fight and full card in-depth.
2016 was a funny old year for Heavyweight boxing, but it was no laughing matter for Deontay Wilder, who’s mandatory challenger Alexander Povetkin tested positive for a banned substance ahead of their fascinating match-up.
A legal battle with Povetkin’s team ensued, but after failing another drugs test later in the year, Povetkin didn’t really have a leg to stand on.
Still the first 7 months saw the WBC Heavyweight champion in action twice, before his latter contest with Chris Arreola saw him injured and out of action for the rest of the year.
4 straight knockouts as the Heavyweight champion have come in very differing fashion for Wilder in comparison to the mass of early knockouts he scored before winning his world crown.
Wilder 37-0(36KO’s) has been forced to reserve his power for later on in contests, which has proven to the critics that he has the stamina to always give him an opportunity to pull out a late knockout.
Now Wilder is faced with a late and dangerous replacement in Gerald Washington 18-0-1(12KO’s). An opponent standing just an inch shorter than Wilder in height and reach.
Californian, Washington was forced to dig deep back in the fall of 2015 when he was fortunate to escape with a draw against the teak-tough Amir Mansour.
Following a good start in that contest, boxing well from range, Washington gradually tired and the pressure subsequently mounted from Mansour.
Wilder is a different fighter entirely than Mansour, but the fact that Wilder has looked so fresh late in contests, while Washington has the tendency to fade, points to another stoppage in the second half of the contest for Wilder.
Washington is still green around the edges, and may be caught cold early because of this.
But the feeling in Deontay Wilder vs Gerald Washington is that he will take his blows early, while dishing out smart work of his own.
But as Wilder grows into the contest, Washington will fade out of it, ultimately coming undone around the 7th round.
More Heavyweights clash on the undercard as unknown Polish born Izuagbe Ugonoh – whose parents are Nigerian – looks to make his name known in the division when he faces recent world title challenger Dominic Breazeale 17-1(15KO’s).
It will be interesting to see how the American has recovered from the 7 rounds of punishment he took at the hands of Anthony Joshua last June, and any frailties will certainly be exposed by the big hitting Ugonoh 17-0(14KO’s).
Ugonoh has been extended to 8 rounds, but his recent contests in New Zealand – where he has increased his ratings with the WBO and IBF – have been finished in quick fashion.
Both are good boxers from range, and both are hard hitters, but while we have seen Breazeale taking punishment and come through it – to an extent – we have not witnessed Ugonoh in those deep waters.
Both boxers will take a fair amount of punishment in an entertaining contest, but add the Amir Mansour war to the Joshua beating and you’re looking at a fighter that finds it hard to stay away from danger in the ring.
And despite his inexperience at this level, Ugonoh is dangerous, and can cause a slight shock here with a narrow points win.
In the fight of the night – on paper at least – Jarrett Hurd can make a significant step towards world glory when he takes on Tony Harrison in a Super Welterweight match-up.
The two will contest the IBF Super Welterweight title vacated by Jermall Charlo in a bout that features two bright prospects in the sport.
(Hurd’s performance last time out via PBC YouTube):
But Harrison 24-1(20KO’s) came unstuck when well ahead against Willie Nelson over a year ago.
In the 9th round Nelson grabbed the victory from the jaws of defeat, proving that a contest is never over until it’s over.
For Harrison, at worst it exposed a brittle chin, but at best it just proved a slight lack of concentration from a young – and at the time inexperienced fighter.
Three wins later and now it is Harrison with the experience, against an opponent yet to taste a real test.
Hurd 19-0(13KO’s) is a talented boxer, who does very little wrong in the ring.
He possesses a good dig, but can’t be considered a knockout artist, although he did impress in stopping Oscar Molina in the final round of their contest last June.
This is a 50/50 fight if ever there was one, a contest that is likely to bring out the best in both fighters.
Hurd can get off to the better start, keeping himself busy with a constant jab.
With little to split them it is likely to come down to who can produce down the stretch.
The extremely tentative pick is for Harrison, behind on the scorecards to rally late, but Hurd will respond in kind.
With both shaken in the championship rounds, Hurd’s early work should just about be enough to secure a split decision win.