by Cliff Rold
For those with an interest in seeing rising Heavyweights, Christmas is coming early. Two of the best of the rising hopefuls will be on display in fights they should win, but, hey, someone call Seth Mitchell.
The element that always makes the big boys stand out is the anything can happen element. When men who weigh over 200 lbs. start slinging leather, it’s bound to hurt and with the right leverage anyone can be hero for a day.
Lower on the scale, one of the biggest draws in the U.S. market takes on a tough and yet relatively unknown battler for a title at 154 lbs. Madison Square Garden should be rocking. New York fans of Miguel Cotto hope to find a little early Christmas too.
These are the picks of the week.
Pick It: #2 Miguel Cotto vs. #8 Austin Trout (Saturday, Showtime, 9 PM EST/PST)
Cotto (37-3, 30 KO), hot off a competitive loss to Floyd Mayweather, could have gotten away with someone easier. There are rare occasions where he has been matched to do just that. It’s not his style in the whole and he gets credit for taking on Trout (25-0, 14 KO). Trout may have the WBA belt but it is he who is being given the big chance here and there are many leaning in his favor. Why not? He’s younger, fresher, and has shown boxing chops. However, after a dull win over Delvin Rodriguez over the summer, the onus is on Trout to show he really belongs with the big boys. It’s a fascinating, hard to pick fight on paper and one wonders where Cotton’s motivation will be without another superstar name on the marquee. It better be high. Trout, a pro since 2005, is likely to bring the best he’s got.
Pick Wealth Twice: David Price and Tyson Fury (But Not Against Each Other)
As both work towards eventual serious title contention, British Heavyweights David Price and Tyson Fury are growing interest among Heavyweight followers. Price (14-0, 12 KO) is the smaller man by an inch at 6’8 and is making his progression through British staples. Last time out it was former Gold Medalist Audley Harrison. Now it’s journeyman Matt Skelton (28-6, 23 KO) on Wealth TV Friday at 2 PM EST/11 AM PST. The next day, Tyson Fury (19-0, 14 KO) locks horns with former title challenger Kevin Johnson (28-2-1, 13 KO) is a fight which is pure comparison shopping, a chance to see if Fury can topple a man Vitali Klitschko did not (even if Vitali did win just about every second of that awful encounter). Fury goes Saturday on Wealth at 4 PM EST/1 PM PST.
Pick Telemundo: Pablo Munguia vs. Antonio Pitalua (Friday, Telemundo, 11:35 PM EST)
Far off the radar, this is a blood and guts special. Pitalua (53-6-1, 47 KO) is long in the tooth at 42. Munguia (15-3, 11 KO) doesn’t have much to show for his career so far. They’ve both been stopped more than once. Chances are high someone is getting stopped here. It’s not much, but it’s better than Leno.
Back in seven.
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Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene and a member of the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, the Yahoo Pound for Pound voting panel, and the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at [email protected]