Jevgenijs Aleksejevs: Next Fight Preparation
Forget Santa Claus; boxing is coming to town in a big way this festive period, with phenomenal match-ups throughout the month.
Our man, MightyTips ambassador and undefeated boxer Jevgenijs' The Hurricane' Aleksejevs has his say on the upcoming fights in December, including a thrilling-looking face-off between Ryan Garcia and Oscar Duarte.
In November, we saw Joe Cordina come out on top against Edward Vazquez in a slim majority decision - a result our man The Hurricane predicted, though it was a different method. The fight was a little closer than many had expected, and Vazquez was not happy at all in the aftermath, raising his middle finger after hearing the result. He looked at home at this level, and we haven't heard the last of the USA fighter.
It was also a grinding points win for former Olympic silver medalist Shakur Stevenson over Edwin De Los Santos, who was no less furious than Vazquez upon hearing the decision. According to many observers, the 9/1 underdog had done enough to cause a monumental upset. Still, the judges are the only viewers who matter, and they awarded a 115-113, 116-112, and 116-112 unanimous decision win to Stevenson, making him a three-division champion. It sets up a fight with Vasiliy Lomachenko-conqueror Devin Haney, the undisputed division champion. It was also another correct result prediction for the MightyTips team!
With November behind us, we examine the biggest boxing bouts in December. Check out our top three below, including invaluable insight from The Hurricane.
Please note the odds provided below are the best supplied by online boxing sportsbooks at the time, and they may change.
Venue: Toyota Center, Houston
Garcia record: 23-1-0 (19 KOs)
Duarte record: 26-1-1 (21 KOs)
Odds: Garcia (1.25 fav) Duarte (4.0)
If ever there was a powder keg of a fight, it would be this match-up between two of the best knockout artists in the sport.
Ryan Garcia has 19 KOs in 23 wins and is hunting for revenge after suffering the first defeat of his career to Gervonta Davis last time out. Oscar Duarte, meanwhile, has 21 KOs in 26 wins and is coming off six stoppage wins on the bounce.
The welterweight clash will be an exciting meeting of styles, with Garcia returning to a 140-pound fighting weight and Duarte, who usually fights at 135 pounds, meeting him at the same point on the scales.
The Hurricane believes the new training regime for Garcia could be just the medicine to recover from damaged ego and pride.
The Hurricane's Verdict
What is interesting about this fight is that after his defeat against Davis, Garcia returns to the ring not against a journeyman but against a very aggressive and unpredictable fighter. He looks to be very comfortable with his new coach, Derrick James, and his confidence in beating as strong an opponent as Duarte stems from great early work in his new training regime.
Many, including Oscar De La Hoya, wanted to see Ryan in an easier fight. But I am excited to see what he has learned [from that defeat] and what he took from the new coach because I've noticed he looks very different with every coach he has.
I liked his work with Canelo's coach, Eddy Reynoso, but I understand how difficult it was for him to be the coach's favourite, which eventually led to him changing his coaching team. He worked with the famous Joe Goossen after Reynoso, but I do not believe Goossen could give Garcia what he wanted.
Venue: Desert Diamond Arena, Arizona
Rodriguez record: 18-0-0 (11 KOs)
Edwards record: 20-0-0 (4 KOs)
Odds: Rodriguez (1.57 fav), Edwards (2.95)
The bookmakers are split on what should be a juicy WBO and IBF flyweight unification fight between two unbeaten talents at the top of their game.
The American boxer, nicknamed "Bam", is one of the best fighters in the world pound-for-pound and can count impressive wins in 2022 against Carlos Cuadras, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai and Israel Gonzalez on his resume. He will be seven inches better off in the reach and will hope it pays off.
Meanwhile, Edwards has been holding onto his title since 2019 and will be making his debut in the USA.
It is almost too close to call between two evenly-matched fighters, but home advantage could swing it for Rodriguez. There could be plenty of twists and turns in the bout, with both fighters feeding off momentum, meaning there will be plenty of live betting options.
Prediction: Rodriguez by decision.
Venue: Ariake Arena,Tokyo
Inoue record: 25-0-0 (22 KOs)
Tapales record: 37-3-0 (19 KOs)
Odds: Inoue (1.10 fav) Tapales (8.0)
Is there a better boxer in the world right now than Naoye Inoue? He is undefeated with an insane 88% knockout record across his 25 victories and is ranked number one in the world by RING at super bantamweight.
Nicknamed "The Monster", he was last seen in a dominant and devastating victory over American Stephen Fulton, showcasing insane hand speed, incredible power, and lightning movement. Come the end of the fight in the eighth round, he had landed 30% of the 379 punches he threw and 39% of his power shots. Fulton, by comparison, hit just 21% of the 233 punches he threw. At 1.10, they aren't the best odds you will get on a favourite, but he's shown no evidence to suggest he's capable of losing this fight so far in his career.
Marlon Tapales is entering the lion's den in Tokyo, and it's difficult to see how he can engineer anything other than defeat. Still, he has unified the WBA and IBF super-bantamweight titles since April of this year. He is undergoing the longest training camp of his career - a four-month boxing odyssey with trainer Ernel Fontanilla in Las Vegas - and will fancy his chances of causing the biggest upset of the year.
Fancy Tapales to oblige? Place your boxing bet via mobile apps recommended by MightyTips!