Deotay Wilder (40-0-1) faces Luis Ortiz (31-1) in a rematch from 2018 that no-one really wants see. After this, weve been promised Wilder v Fury II has been agreed for February so I can put up with this, assuming the Fury fight is next. That 2018 fight was a good fight, Ortiz was giving Wilder big trouble in the early rounds and had him hurt. But once he tired, it was only a matter of time before Wilder landed, and landed he did in round 10 which ended the fight. Wilder is, bar none, the best pure puncher in boxing, and one of the best of all time for me. If he lost 11 rounds and needed a knockout in the 12th, there’s a good chance he would get it. He is massively flawed as a boxer, everyone has said it for years, but it means nothing with his punching power when he keeps knocking people out. That power saved him in the first Fury fight, as without that 12th round knockdown (I still don’t know how Fury got up), he would of lost instead of getting a draw. Since the first fight between these two, Wilder has that draw with Fury and a complete massacre of Dominic Breazeale, while Ortiz has fought Razvan Cojanu, Travis Kauffman and Christian Hammer. How that equates to a world title shot it beyond me. Ortiz is also 2 years older, now 40, which makes this more dangerous for the Cuban. With Wilder Fury II on tap, this tune up for Wilder is a hell of a lot better than Fury’s recent opponents. Give me Ortiz over Tom Schwarz and Otto Wallin any day. But at the end of the day, Wilder is going to destroy Ortiz. He starts 1/6 with Ortiz 9/2. I expected Wilder to be wider than, but I feel the bookies are looking too much into that first fight. This should be a far more convincing win for Wilder, and the KO win at 1/3 is great odds for a near certainty. Ortiz’s best, probably only, hope here is catching Wilder cold. Wilder doesn’t seem to have the best chin, he’s been wobbled a few times, but never went down, so maybe that’s a myth? An Ortiz KO is 6/1, and an Ortiz points win is 12/1. Wilder on points is 5/1 but I’ll be surprised if this goes 6 rounds never mind 12. After Fury struggled with Wallin, Wilder will want a spectacular win to put him firm favourite for the re-match. Also with Ruiz Joshua round the corner, everyone wants to one-up each other to argue they are No.1 in the heavyweight division.
BNC Tip – Wilder to win by KO 1/3, Under 6.5 rounds @ 4/5
Other Notable Fight
Another fight no-one really wants to see, but isn’t the worst fight. I can’t be the only one disappointed in Callum Smith (26-0) since beating Groves for his signature win last year? I thought that was his coming out party (see might be), but Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam and John Ryder are not what I expected since that brilliant win. Smith is a brilliant boxer, and is in danger of wasting his career here. At 29 years old, he has to be demanding better than John Ryder, even tho Ryder (28-4) is Interim champion, that was just to make this fight sellable for Eddie Hearn. Is it just me, or do you sometimes forget Smith even exists? You hear nothing about him until a fight is made, he has the fight, then nothing again. Maybe he’s just too nice a bloke? This has Rocky Fielding written all it for Smith. It will surely last longer than a round, but Smith should blow Ryder away here. The gulf in class is massive, altho Smith has sometimes laboured to wins, he can’t afford this here. He starts a massive 1/16 with Ryder 8/1 to score a stunning upset. This can’t be 12 rounds of the uninterested version of Callum Smith. He needs to dominant and ruthless, and remind everyone he is very much is a serious player in the division. Hes 2/5 for a KO, with Ryder 12/1. If it goes 12 rounds, Smith is 13/5 and Ryder 18/1, but Smith will lose a lot of fans for me unless it’s a competitive, close fight, which it should never be. Smith needs to get Ryder out the way quick, then demand a massive fight from Matchroom if hes serious about big unification fights.
BNC Tip – Smith by KO @ 2/5, Under 7.5 rounds @ 10/11
MTK Golden Contract Light Welterweights (Sky Sports, Friday) – The second edition of the MTK Golden Contract starts on Friday with the Light Welterweights. Outright tournament odds for the 8 boxers are – 7/4 Ohara Davies, 5/2 Mohamed Mimoune, 4/1 Tyrone McKenna, 13/2 Lewis Benson, 8/1 Darren Surtess, 16/1 Logan Yoon, 50/1 Kieran Gething and 50/1 Mikey Sakyi. The draw took place on Tuesday and gave this these opening round fights, the standout Mimoune v Surtees –
Kieran Gething v Jeff Ofori (originally Lewis Benson) – Gething (9-2-1) and Ofori (10-1) meet here after the board pulled Benson on Thursday. Can’t see this as a fight most will be excited to see. With 5 KO’s between them, ill be surprised if this doesn’t go a relatively unexciting 10 rounds. I had Benson as a near cert to win on points before the change, and this is basically a toss up, both men are 5/6 to win. Im going to go Gething basically as hes prepared for this tournament longer. Maybe avoid this fight altogether unless you know something I don’t. Gething to win @ 5/6
Mohamed Mimoune v Darren Surtees – Best fight of the quarter finals. Mimoune (21-3), best known to UK fans for his win over Sam Eggington, takes on Surtees (12-0). Mimoune is by far, the best fighter Surtees has faced, and although I can see Surtees giving it a good go, I think he falls short. Mimoune is a skilled southpaw who will be far too much for a game Surtees. Mimoune on points @ 1/3
Mikey Sakyi v Tyrone McKenna – McKenna (19-1-1) gets an easy passage to the semi-final with a fight against Sakyi (8-2). Neither are known for power, ao this is likely in for the full 10 rounds, where McKenna will be far too experienced and good. McKenna on points @ 8/13
Logan Yoon v Ohara Davies – Yoon (16-0) shouldn’t pose too much of a problem for a fully focused Davies (19-2). However, if the Davies who was so lucky to the nod against Miguel Vasquez turns up, he could be in for a rude awakening here. Davies should beat Yoon easily, but is he even serious about boxing anymore? The knockout of the night is there for Davies if he wants it, but im not sure he’ll be bothered. Hes always had talent, and hes favourite for this tournament for a reason. Davies on points @ 5/6