Boxing fans have three more things to do in one night this Saturday. Hopefully the powers that be will be able to release the big events especially the traditional boxing cards that are streaming live on ESPN+ and DAZN. Vasily Lomachenko returns to the ring to face lightweight contender Jamaine Ortiz. Also in the heavyweight division is Joseph Diaz Jr. in what amounts to a do-or-die match against William Zepeda. In addition, Jake Paul took his toughest test on paper in a very short bout against his boxer Anderson Silva on Showtime PPV.
Let’s start with the circus live from Glendale, Arizona as Jake Paul gets a chance to prove himself against the famous martial arts star in Anderson Silva. Over a decade ago many UFC fans were rooting for Silva to fight Roy Jones Jr. Part of him is Jones still fighting and the other part of him is Silva at the peak of his power and his fans want to prove that MMA is better than boxing. What’s amazing about this promo is that Silva’s style on his feet is the poor man’s version of RJJ with his hands down and flashes quick reaction times, taking opponents out and making them look silly at times.
After being 47 years old this boxing match Anderson believes is a legitimate test for Jake considering the short time that Paul has been active in the sport. Jake has the benefit of training as a boxer only in recent years developing with boxers. That said Silva has a long history of creating boxers as videos of Anderson at Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Gym are numerous. Silva obviously has legitimate footwork and upper body movement to go along with the jab. He has the absolute ability to put his opponent to sleep or catch them coming in with a counter and then using the exit.
Paul has to use his jab and be careful about setting Silva’s trap. This game will tell a lot about Jake Paul’s ability to cut the ring and the length of his career. Physical work (shooting on the hip) will be necessary in an effort to make less and Fade Anderson Silva. Ask Silva to start pumping quickly and using the entire ring using a two inch reach. The question is how long can it be on the move without gas and/or slowing down too much? The answer is Jake’s constant pressure up front and constant pressure. Let’s not forget that we saw Jake tired in both fights with Tyrone Woodley.
Of course there is a possibility that Jake will look around like he did against Woodley and turn Silva into an aggressor. Some keys beyond the combat sports experience on Anderson’s side are the scorecard of the judge favoring the “A” side in this event anyway. The second has to do with father time, adding to this is the rumor of some tough times raising the yellow flag. The last thing is Silva’s output as an MMA fighter and the number of times he has been hit. It would still be wise to take a flight against Silva who sits as the underdog on the betting line.
My official guess is Jake Paul’s Share-Advice.
Vasily Lomachenko has returned from military service in his home country of Ukraine. According to his promoter Bob Arum, if Loma wins this Saturday night Top Rank Inc. will seek a fight between Vasily and undisputed 135-pound champion Devin Haney. Standing in his way is a quality boxer named Jamaine Ortiz who has an exciting new UD win over Jamel Herring. Ortiz has a very quick jab and likes to follow it up with a straight left hand power shot. On the Ortiz side of the floor our hands are very low and when he strikes in combination he shows up with big shots.
By Ortiz loading if he misses it will make Jamaine tired while at the same time leaving him open for Loma to face. Generally Jamaine will need to cut the distance and try to land a short punch. At times he has shown he can throw sneaky uppercuts in the clinch. Inside Ortiz can rely on Loma a little bit but he can still use angles to hit and move in the pocket, which as we know is Lomachenko’s specialty. Vasily is brilliant when using his flawlessly placed footwork but is in range for quick and effective kicks. Loma would rinse and repeat with his corner attack which was enough to disorient Ortiz and thus score points adding up to a big lead on the cards.
My official prediction is Vasily Lomachenko by unanimous decision.
Joseph Diaz Jr. he is in a difficult situation I use the word crossroads from his point of view he really needs to win to ensure his continued work as a legitimate candidate and not a gatekeeper. Diaz has been up and down in his past few outings but managed to put together a good effort in a points-defining loss to Devin Haney. Jo Jo lands some powerful left hooks to the body and Haney’s head looks like he’s hit Devin a time or two. Diaz’s opponent is tough 26-0 with 23 stops William Zepeda.
Before going 10-full rounds with Rene Alvarado in May, William stopped every opponent since 2018. Zepeda fell there and knocked out the undefeated Hector Tanajara last summer. Alvarado didn’t look like a puppet as Rene was able to catch him coming in with clean punches. Once Rene showed he could handle Zepeda’s power shot, he seemed to disintegrate William as he proceeded to catch him in the middle. Zepeda was the bigger man at 135 even though Diaz came in heavy in a 130 pound match with Shavkatdzhon Rakhimov that ended in a draw.
Outside of the ring training may be the reason why Diaz is heavy and apparently he doesn’t have the same pop that he has at the bottom or at featherweight. Joseph is fully capable of putting pressure on Zepeda while being responsible for the defense which is his path to success. Jo Jo will likely use head movement behind the jab on the inside while occasionally resetting side moves to keep William guessing. My gut told me this recently at an allegation ring involving a lawsuit involving legal issues that have been allegedly focusing on Diaz for some time regardless of the outcome. Diaz admitted that he texted the underage girl using excessive alcohol consumption as an excuse for his behavior.
Diaz is the better fighter with more tools but will he be mentally and physically ready to fight in the spot but also move in the ring when needed? This boxing fan thinks the DAZN matchup will steal the night from the entertainment scene. The inconsistency from Diaz in and out of the squared circle made me second guess and question his reasoning so it was enough not to pick him. That said, it’s fair to say that Joseph is a living dog, but this guy will have to wait and see how Diaz’s body looks on the scale.
My official guess is William Zepeda’s Most Decisive.
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Chris Carlson Host/Producer of Rope A Dope Radio Podcast Available at www.blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio