By Jake Donovan
Jessie Vargas is battle tested at the prospect/fringe contender level, most notably barely surviving a 10-round affair against Josesito Lopez in their Sept. ‘11 war.
Wale Omotoso is an intriguing prospect stepping up in class for the first time in his six-year career.
Their common bond – two unbeaten prospects looking to make the transition to contender status in a loaded and lucrative welterweight division.
How does the staff at Boxingscene.com see the action going down tonight at the Home Depot Center in Carson, California? Read on to find out.
PREDICTIONS – VARGAS v. OMOTOSO
“Vargas to win.”
- Damien Acevedo (Vargas)
“Vargas KO 10-Jessie Vargas hasn't displayed a lot of power so for in his career but I believe he proves a lot of his critics wrong on Saturday. Wale "Lucky Boy" Omotoso sports a perfect record but has shown vulnerabilities in his most recent fights including hitting the canvas against journeyman Irving Garcia in a fight ruled a no contest after a clash of heads. Vargas has clearly faced the better competition and I see Vargas' relentless style wearing Omotoso down in the last third of the fight.”
- Ryan Burton (Vargas)
“Vargas will eventually need to offer some sort of separation between fights. The Vegas native boasts all of the talent in the world, but his past several fights post-Josesito look the same round after round. Tonight could prove that spark. Omotoso has a catchy name and is trained by Freddie Roach. Not sure I see much more to him. He’s there to be hit, which should motivate Vargas to step it up a notch and impress in his HBO-televised debut (excluding PPV undercard appearances).”
– Jake Donovan (Vargas)
“Vargas MD. He will survive some bombs early on and come on late as Omotoso will fade down the stretch giving most of the round to Vargas in an entertaining scrap.”
– Ernest Gabion (Vargas)
“The Bradley undercard match-up may end up stealing the show. Two undefeated fighters. Thus two fighters that have found that little extra every time out to secure a victory. On paper, Omotoso has more power, based on his KO percentage. Vargas has faced a higher level of competition for a much longer period of time, and out-boxed the fighters he stepped up against, like Josesito Lopez. I see that experience carrying Vargas to a decision. Probably a UD, but maybe a split or majority decision.”
- Richard Najdowski (Vargas)
“This is Jessie Vargas' biggest stage and I feel he has enough to beat Omotoso via decision.”
- Chris Robinson (Vargas)
“Vargas Dec. Omotoso: This could be a war, but Vargas appears to have the more refined technique of the two. Assuming he can take the big shots Omotoso will be winging, Vargas should be able to outpoint him here.”
– Cliff Rold (Vargas)
“I don't like Vargas here, and it seems the Nigerian from the Down Under is a better fighter, but I'll go with Vargas, because he is lucky to get a decision which he doesn't earn properly.”
- Alexey Sukachev (Vargas)
Total – Jessie Vargas 8, Wale Omotoso 0
Vargas (21-0, 9KO) and Omotoso (23-0, 19KO) put their unbeaten records and prospect status on the line in a 10-round welterweight affair. The bout serves as the televised co-feature to the return of Tim Bradley in a welterweight title defense against Ruslan Provodnikov. The show airs live from the Home Depot Center in Carson, Calif (Sat, HBO 10:15PM ET)
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