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Boxing Odds and Ends: Weekend Betting Preview and Obits

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  • Boxing Odds and Ends: Weekend Betting Preview and Obits

    Click image for larger version  Name:	amanda.PNG Views:	0 Size:	527.0 KB ID:	19537

    By Arne K. Lang

    Several of my acquaintances have a bank of TVs in a room of their home. They are sports bettors and this allows them to keep tabs on several games simultaneously without getting off the couch. With boxing enjoying a post-pandemic boom, having multiple TVs at one’s disposal would be very useful, obviating the need to choose between two or more compelling shows.

    Akin to last week, this coming Saturday there are two overlapping attractions. The Top Rank show in Las Vegas has a big advantage over the Showtime show in Atlanta as the former is on ESPN+ and the latter is pay-per-view (suggested list price $74.95). But one suspects that the Showtime show will produce more fireworks.

    The last time we saw Gervonta “Tank” Davis in action, he scored a spectacular one-punch knockout over Leo Santa Cruz. It was Davis’s twenty-third knockout in 24 starts and left no doubt that he belongs on everyone’s list of the top pound-for-pound fighters. On Saturday he jumps up two weight classes to take on fellow unbeaten Mario Barrios (26-0, 17 KOs). It’s a tall order for Tank, no pun intended although Barrios, from San Antonio, is bigger and taller (by about five inches) and has longer arms.

    Gervonta Davis is the best fighter to bubble out of Baltimore since the magnificent Joe Gans who reached his peak circa 1905. But Davis recently purchased a home in Atlanta and will have something of a home court advantage. But if the geographical factor factored into the odds, it likely contributed only a smidgeon. Tank is a consensus 9/2 favorite in man-to-man betting primarily because he packs a harder punch and is a southpaw.

    The co-feature is a 12-round super welterweight contest between Erickson Lubin (23-1, 16 KOs) and former IBF/WBA title-holder Jeison Rosario. At last glance, Lubin was a consensus 13/5 favorite.

    ---

    As promoter Bob Arum noted at Thursday’s press conference, a big-name fighter coming off a loss normally chooses a soft opponent for his first fight back. Vasyl Lomachenko is a huge favorite over Masayoshi Nakatani, in the 15/1 range, but Nakatani is no pushover and can make things warm for the 33-year-old Ukrainian southpaw whose setback to Teofimo Lopez may have been a sign that all those amateur fights have finally caught up with him.

    Nakatani (19-1, 13 KOs) extended Teofimo the full 12 rounds in 2019 and then after missing almost 17 months because of Covid-related travel restrictions, came back and upset Felix Verdejo, overcoming a big deficit to stop the Puerto Rican in the ninth round.

    The co-feature is an interesting 10-round middleweight clash between Rob Brant (26-2, 18 KOs) and Zhanibek Alimkhanuly (9-0, 5 KOs).

    Brant, originally from St. Paul, Minnesota, briefly held the WBA middleweight title, giving it back to the man that he won it from, Ryota Murata. Prior to that crushing defeat in Tokyo, Brant’s lone setback had come in Germany at the hands of tricky German southpaw Juergen Braehmer (currently 52-3). He has been training in Omaha under Brian McIntyre, the head trainer of Terence Crawford.

    Alimkhanuly, a stablemate of Lomachenko, had a decorated amateur career while representing his native Kazakhstan. He is taking a step up in class against Brant, but the oddsmakers yet installed him the favorite and he currently sits in the 16/5 range. The fact that the Kazakh is a southpaw weighed heavily in establishing the price.

    Obits

    Bernardo Mercado

    Bernardo Mercado, who was once rated #1 at heavyweight by the WBC, passed away on June 11 at age 69 in Cartagena in his native Columbia. Although Mercado was one of the biggest punchers of his era, his death from an apparent heart attack fell under the radar in the English-speaking world.

    Mercado, who was active from 1975 to 1989, customarily carried about 218 pounds on his six-foot-four frame. One of his biggest wins came against Trevor Berbick on Berbick’s turf in Halifax, Nova Scotia. Mercado stopped him in the opening round. Berbick was 12-0 heading in and wouldn’t lose again until he was out-pointed by Larry Holmes in a 15-round title fight in Las Vegas.

    Mercado moved into the #1 slot after TKOing Earnie Shavers at the Great Gorge Playboy Club in New Jersey. This was a doozy of a fight in which Mercado got off the deck to stop Shavers in the seventh round.

    There was an unscheduled intermission after the third round when a rip was discovered on Shavers’ right glove and a new glove had to be found. Shavers was a murderous puncher and it would be written that the glove exploded from the force of a punch landed on Mercado’s face, but one suspects that the real culprit was a manufacturer’s defect.

    The upset of Shavers put Mercado in line for a title fight with Holmes but the opportunity evaporated when he was out-pointed by Leon Spinks in his next fight.

    Mercado made his pro debut at the Olympic Auditorium in Los Angeles. Coming up the ladder, he was a busy bee. He fought at the Silver Slipper in Las Vegas in September of 1976 and six days later appeared on the undercard of the third Ali-Norton fight at Yankee Stadium. He finished his career with a record of 33-5. He scored 28 knockouts and was stopped four times.

    Brian London

    Brian London, a two-time world heavyweight title challenger, was an anomaly. He took a lot of punishment during his boxing career – a reporter wrote that his face looked like it had been visited by a jackhammer – but London, who passed away on Wednesday, June 23, lived to be 87 and was purportedly seen out jogging (okay, a brisk walk) just a few weeks ago.

    The temptation is to say that London, whose birth name was Brian Sydney Harper, was blessed with good genes, but his father passed away at the age of 50.

    London the elder, Jack London, fought the likes of Tommy Loughran, Larry Gains, Freddie Mills, Buddy Baer and Bruce Woodcock, and was Britain’s first post-War Commonwealth heavyweight champion.

    Brian London emulated his old man, winning the same title when he stopped Welshman Joe Erskine in the eighth round in 1958 at an iconic greyhound stadium in London. But he didn’t keep the belt very long. Henry Cooper, his nemesis, wrested it from him seven months later, winning a 15-round decision.

    London was coming off that defeat when he challenged Floyd Patterson for the world heavyweight title in Indianapolis. Patterson stopped him in the 11th round, after which London remarked that Patterson was the fastest man on two feet.

    Seven years later, he fought Muhammad Ali inside a half-full Earls Court. Ali was faster.

    London failed to land a meaningful punch on Ali who stopped him in the third round. London arrived at this fight in a limousine, compliments of promoter Jack Solomons, and reportedly took the subway home as Solomons, who lost money on the fight, shooed the limousine driver away as London was collecting his belongings in the dressing room.

    Brian London had two nicknames: the Blackpool Rock and the British Bulldog. Active from 1955 to 1970, he finished 37-20-1. He scored 26 knockouts and was stopped 11 times. No fool with his money, London acquired several successful nightclubs in Blackpool and lived comfortably in retirement.

    Photo credit: Amanda Westcott / SHOWTIME

    Check out more boxing news on video at the Boxing Channel

  • #2
    Davis I dont know about this guy just don't know. He could of been a lot more already but EH he gets side tracked outside the ring and I think sometimes it effects him in the ring. Does Pettway get a mention along with Baltimore Fighters (?) Anyhow Barrios was fighting a guy named Akhmadov went the distance and he Barrios kept getting hit often and Akh was shorter then Barrios that fight makes me wonder about how this fight this weekend might turn out. I will skip the fight as PPV is not something everyone can participate in. But everything is a PPV now if you could sell what they have been selling as PPV worthy lately you can sell anyone as a PPV STAR at this moment in boxing. Now Nakatani vs Lomo that is worth the price of admission to me and it will turn out nice, Nak will get knocked down at some point but he will get up even if he has to do it more then once in the fight. All I am saying is a fight will break out in that one, and that is all I am looking for in the ring that and the two guys in the the ring are actual fighters not pretenders or want to be or used to be. Enjoy the fights there should be something to talk about when they are over.

    Comment


    • Kid Blast
      Kid Blast commented
      Editing a comment
      good stuff Blues

  • #3
    And then one day in mid 2021, an old guy from Vegas named Arne Lang became the most informative and entertaining boxing beat writer in the world. ✍️👍 It happened! It happened!

    Comment


    • Kid Blast
      Kid Blast commented
      Editing a comment
      It's very possible. At least he is willing to talk odds. And when he does, I listen. Not exactly the guy in "Casino" but something pretty close.

  • #4
    Wouldn't call myself a beat writer and I'm only old when I look in the mirror. As for Lefty Rosenthal, the character portrayed by Robert DeNiro in "Casino," I was the anti-Lefty when I worked at the Stardust.

    Comment


    • #5
      I’m anti-lefty as well. 😉

      Comment


      • Kid Blast
        Kid Blast commented
        Editing a comment
        I am very pro Sharon Stone

    • #6
      I am a true fan of all kinds of fighting, and mostly I love boxing and MMA, but still, I avoid betting on such events. I mean, betting is risky and brings nothing but negative emotions.
      If you want to try gambling, I'd recommend playing casino games. The best casino game is poker. If you'd like to read more about it, check out this site: Slotsformoney.com/casinos/poker/.
      I hope you enjoy it, but keep in mind that gambling is just a game, and you shouldn't try turning it into a source of income.
      Stay safe, and have a wonderful day!
      Last edited by MichaMur; 07-23-2021, 01:22 AM.

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