Advertisement
Advertisement

Rigondeaux-Agbeko: BoxingScene's Staff Predictions

By Jake Donovan

Guillermo Rigondeaux delivered one of the most impressive boxing performances of 2013, taking Nonito Donaire to school to the point of making the reigning Fighter of the Year look foolish in scoring an upset win this past April.

However, the term ‘upset’ took on a different meaning in the aftermath. Rigondeaux upset the power structure with the manner in which he fought, with promoter Bob Arum alleging that the brass at HBO “threw up whenever I mentioned his name.”

The claim goes a long way in explaining why the unbeaten Cuban has spent the past eight months on the sidelines, waiting for someone, anyone to step to the plate and fight him.

Enter a former bantamweight titlist in Joseph Agbeko, who moves up in weight to challenge one of boxing’s best, tonight in Atlantic City. Their bout, which comes with Rigondeaux’ lineal super bantamweight championship on the line, headlines a televised tripleheader on HBO.

Agbeko made a surprise ring return earlier this year, posting a wide points win over Luis Melendez to end a 15-month ring hiatus. The Ghanaian was assumed to be done with the sport, after having lost three of his last four and going silent for all of 2012.

Instead, the runner-up in Showtime’s bantamweight tournament insists he has plenty of fight left in him.

The 33-year old makes a bold move in challenging one of boxing’s best pure boxers, especially given his penchant for coming up short in close fights. Two of his four losses – majority decisions to Vladimir Sidirenko and Abner Mares – were both hotly contested, though more decisive defeats came against Yonnhy Perez in their first fight and Mares in their rematch.

In the wake of the recent passing of anti-Apartheid revolutionist and world renowned icon Nelson Mandela, there’s no question Agbeko will carry an additional source of inspiration heading into tonight. Will that, coupled with his surprisingly massive size advantage (despite being the one moving up in weight) and overall skillset, be enough to score the upset.

Or will Rigondeaux once again shine, regardless of what anything thinks of the entertainment value produced (or lacking)?

Read on to see how the Boxingscene.com staff believes the HBO-televised main event plays out.

PREDICTIONS – GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX vs. JOSEPH AGBEKO

“The #Rigolution continues.”

- Damien Acevedo (Rigondeaux UD)

“I like Guillermo Rigondeaux to win by a wide decision, just too much skill there.”

- Mitch Abramson (Rigondeaux UD)

“I think Agbeko is going to bring the fight to Rigondeaux and probably stun him a time or two but Rigondeaux's superior boxing skills and overall athleticism will lead him to victory.”

- Ryan Burton (Rigondeaux UD)

“For no other reason than a gut feeling, I envision HBO’s 2013 boxing season to end with an absolute shocker. On paper, Rigondeaux should box circles around Agbeko. Call me a sucker for sentiment, but I see Agbeko drawing emotional inspiration from the legacy left behind by Nelson Mandela, shaking up the industry in the same manner in which Simpiwe Vetyeka threw Chris John – and the featherweight division – for a loop less than two days prior.”

- Jake Donovan (Agbeko SD)

“Agbeko is a decorated former champion who’s hungry to return to the belted class. But he’s meeting a pound-for-pounder at his peak efficiency.”

- Lyle Fitzsimmons (Rigondeaux by decision)

“A prime Agbeko would still have issues with the speed power and skill of Rigondeaux. With age and inactivity playing a factor, I do not see how Agbeko stays competitive with Rigondeaux. Agbeko's only shot is if Rigondeaux does not consider him a threat at all and loses focus much like he did against Roberto Marroquin. I do not see that happening and we see a stellar performance from Rigondeaux.”

- Ernest Gabion (Rigondeaux TKO6)

“Agbeko's first fight back from a 15-month layoff was this past March, and now he's stepping up from bantamweight to 122 pounds to challenge one of the best fighters in the world. This is Rigondeaux's to win and Rigondeaux's to lose, and I believe Rigo will be motivated to put on a very good show en route to a wide unanimous decision.”

- David Greisman (Rigondeaux UD)

“Joseph Agbeko is going to have a hard time finding Guillermo Rigondeaux, and I feel the Cuban will be too fast, too slick and too accurate for "King Kong" in a 12-round exhibition of boxing skills.”

- Ryan Maquinana (Rigondeaux by decision)

“Rigondeaux put on a masterful boxing display, winning a wide decision.”

- Richard Najdowski (Rigondeaux UD)

“This matches two of the best little men of recent years. Agbeko has been largely inactive since a memorable run of fights before and during the Showtime Bantamweight tournament. In his lone 2013 outing, he looked like he can still go. That might not matter against a Rigondeaux who was superlative in outboxing Nonito Donaire. Agbeko may have moments and has the experience but Rigondeaux's precise output, and Agbeko's willingness, could mean a late stoppage for the Cuban.”

- Cliff Rold (Rigondeaux by KO)

“Three losses in the past five fights at 118 pounds for Agbeko and two wins by UD plus 1 fight in 20 months indicate that Rigondeaux will defeat Joseph by KO before 8th round.”

- Reynaldo Sanchez (Rigondeaux TKO8)

“The Cuban master is simply too polished, too good for a slow (albeit awkward) stalker like Agbeko. A stoppage is far less possible as both fighters can take the punch.”

- Alexey Sukachev (Rigondeaux UD)

Totals:

Guillermo Rigondeaux 11

Joseph Agbeko 1

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor of Boxingscene.com, as well as a member of Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, Yahoo Boxing Ratings Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox

Tags:
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by royjonesjrKTFO on 12-08-2013

[QUOTE=frosty-g;14005729]what exactly does agbeko have to do with mandela? bizarre comment in there...[/QUOTE] Maybe because they're both African?

Comment by frosty-g on 12-07-2013

what exactly does agbeko have to do with mandela? bizarre comment in there...

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (2)
Top Headlines Dillian Whyte, Dereck Chisora Could Collide in December Smith Backs Froch: Kovalev is Best Pound For Pound Fighter! Amir Khan Says Land For Boxing Academy is Now in Dispute Team USA: Olympic Postmortem De La Hoya on Canelo-GGG: We Can't Afford To Wait Beyond 2017 Chocolatito: Cuadras Talks A lot, But I'll Prove it in The Ring! Golovkin: No Big Fights at 168, I Make 160 Easy - I'm Not Big 160 Juanma: Business Opportunity Made Me Return, Not Vazquez Morrison, Golub, Baranchyk, Peterkin Head To 9/23 ShoBox Robert Guerrero: I'm Ready For a World Title Shot Right Now! Photos: Gennady Golovkin, Roman Gonzalez Big Bear Media Day Saunders Still a Possibility for Canelo, Golden Boy Focused on Smith Jon Fernandez, Jose Roman Ink Pacts With Lou DiBella De La Hoya: Canelo a 154-Pounder, Will Fight Golovkin When Ready! Jarrell Miller's Promoter: He's Ready For Any World Champion Canelo: Margarito Fight Will NEVER Happen, He Should Retire Ramiro Carrillo, Achour Esho Return on October 1, UIC Pavilion Joshuanthony Ortiz, Edgardo Laboy Ink Pacts With Miguel Cotto Canelo Admits Move To 160 is Likely Next For His Career Mason Menard Puts a Target on The Back of Terry Flanagan Anthony Joshua-David Price Ruled Out For The Fall By Hearn James Kirkland Arrested Over Child Support Beef Photos: Anthony Crolla, Jorge Linares Go Face To Face Photos: Glowacki, Usyk - Go Face To Face at Open Workouts Jessie Vargas: "On November 5th I Will Shut The Critics Up!" Daniel Jacobs: Brook Just Too Small To Survive Against Golovkin Golovkin Laughs at Froch, Eubank: Those Clowns Won't Fight Me! J'Leon Love Will Face Dashon Johnson on September 16 Marlon Tapales vs. Paul Butler in The Works For The Fall De La Hoya: Canelo-Smith Will Have Up To 60,000 Fans at Venue! Frampton: The UK Has 14 World Champions - Not All Are Legit! Gerard Carroll To Fight Twice In Eight Days De La Hoya: Canelo-Golovkin Won't Take 6 Years, But Not Now Daniel Geale vs. Renold Quinlan, Vacant IBO 168 Belt on 10/14 Tom Brown Reflects on The Lost Art of Building a Fighter Amir Khan Plans To Fight in January, May and December Caleb Plant Dominates De Angel in PBC on FS1 Main Event Jhonny Gonzalez vs. Hirotsugu Yamamoto Card Coming Together Canelo-Smith on Pace To Outdo Pacquiao, Says Golden Boy VP Video: Abel Sanchez on Brook, Andre Ward, 160 Landscape
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement