December 6th, 2013 By John Signorella
HBO BATTLES SHOWTIME THIS SATURDAY NIGHT
New York, NY- A multitude of scraps are on the horizon this Saturday evening when rival networks HBO & Showtime go toe to toe offering stacked shows of intrigue. In other words fight fans: Let’s get readdddyyy to set your DVVVRRRRRRRSSSSSS! Due to enormity of “misunderstandings” about to transpire, below is my “Reader’s Digest” type (quick look) at what’s about to go down.
AS OFTEN THE CASE, SHOWTIME APPEARS TO HAVE THE BETTER CARD
The “suits” at Showtime have lined up a nice looking night at the fights with a solid quadruple header. The main event will showcase a turf war between welterweight (147) Brooklynites and former champions Paulie Malignaggi (32-5, 7 KOs) and Zab Judah (42-8, 29 KOs) in a scheduled 12 round crossroads showdown for a last shot at the big dance. In the co feature, welterweight IBF belt holder Devon Alexander (25-1, 14 KOs) will attempt to defend his trophy against talented, but untested pug Shawn Porter (22-0-1, 14 KOs) in a proposed 12 rounds of pound. The broadcast will also pit former light middleweight (154) champ Austin Trout (26-1, 14 KOs) opposite of one time title challenger Erislandy Lara (18-1-2, 12 KOs) in a 12 or less round contest for the vacant WBA strap. In the curtain raiser, we’ll see recently crowned WBC super middleweight (168) strap carrier Sakio Bika (32-5-2, 21 KOs) throwing hands with hard hitting first time title challenger Anthony Dirrell (26-0, 22 KOs) in a slated 12 rounds of combat. The Party starts from Barclay Center, in Brooklyn, New York at 9:45 PM ET on Showtime.
Malignaggi v Judah: Both have faced the best of the best in the biz at their respective weights. I feel Paulie is the fresher of the two… and man!!! If only this guy (Paulie) had a punch, if he did; I feel he’d be one of the best in the world. For those that don’t know; Malignaggi is as tough as they come and is a solid craftsman at his game. All due respect to Zab for his excellent ability: a fierce passion of savagery which was on full display when he spanked Floyd Mayweather for a solid six rounds better then anyone had (or still has) to this point before ultimately tiring and losing down the stretch (L UD 12). Having said all that, I got Paulie on points in a nice looking battle between two awesome pros.
Alexander v Porter: I was starting to lose so faith in Devon before his last fight but much like what Timothy Bradley has done of late, Alexander has shown me a different look and has become more ascetically pleasing to watch instead of being a listless bore. Porter is a descent “poor mans” version of a young Shane Mosley and for whatever reason, he oddly has taken his time to get into a “big time” type fight. In consideration of all this, I’m calling for a poised boxing exhibition in a closely contested affair with a slight lean toward Devon over 12 rounds.
Trout v Lara: I like this fight, a lot. Both guys can punch and both guys have world class attributes. Trout’s coming off a lackluster performance against Saul Alvarez (L UD 12) and will definitely be gunning to gut the once beaten Lara. However, Erislandy has been one tough customer since that setback and has shown some newly discovered power in his already cemented repertoire. I like Lara by stoppage in this one, after 9.
Bika v Dirrell: I’m feeling Bika is really just holding the belt on loan and has seen better days. I expect Dirrell to quite frankly beat the hell out of him and win via KO under 6 frames.
HBO’s FINAL CARD TELECAST OF THE YEAR GOES THRICE BILLING
Considered by most to be a top ten “pound for pound” guy, WBO and WBA super bantamweight (122) kingpin Guillermo Rigondeaux (12-0, 8 KOs) typifies HBO’s offering of fistic warfare against former bantamweight (118) champ Joseph Agbeko (29-4, 22 KOs) in a scheduled 12 rounder. The co feature will have entertaining light middleweights (154) Glen Tapia (20-0, 12 KOs) and James Kirkland (31-1, 27 KOs) grinding it out in a possible 10 rounds of action. Kicking off the action, rugged middleweights (160) Matthew Macklin (29-5, 20 KOs) and Lamar Russ (14-0, 7 KOs) will engage in a scheduled 10 round tiff. Coverage begins from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey at 9:45 PM ET on HBO.
Rigendaux v Agbeko: Should be an easy one for Rig’s. Don’t get me wrong, Agbeko is a season veteran of the game but is moving up in weight and has shown signs of being shop worn so this might be more about a pay day for him then actual career advancement as a boxer. I got Rigondeaux besting Joseph under 9 via TKO.
Tapia v Kirkland: Should be a good one. Looking to see what the streaky Kirkland has to offer and how Tapia deals with the step up in class. Most importantly, this fight could be very indicative to finding out if Kirkland is just another W.O.T. (waste of talent) on the block. Honestly, I think he is and I got Glen finishing him brutally early.
Macklin v Russ: Could be a fun encounter between two tough guy type middleweights. I’m thinking Macklin’s better experience leads him to a very fun to watch win…that is if the previous beating he just took from GGG didn’t ruin him permanently. Either way, don’t blink; this one has knockout written all over it.