Boxing

Jameel McCline-Mike Mollo - Will "Big Time" Get Back On The Winning Track?

10.10.08 - by James Slater - Set to box on Don King's big November 7th card in China, are heavyweights Jameel McCline and Mike Mollo. Both men are capable of fighting in an exciting way and the bout that is up on BoxRec as a WBC heavyweight title eliminator may well be one of the fun fights of the year..

Both men can punch, neither guy is overly adept at avoiding a blow and McCline and Mollo should both be coming to fight hard. At age 38, "Big Time" is surely running out of time, while the ten years younger Mollo, 19-2(12) is always a guy who comes to fight as best he can. Put them both together, as King has, and you just might get a cracking fight. With this match-up it looks as though a KO is a strong possibility, one way or the other.

These two are not slick, hit-and-move stylists in any way shape or form, so the fight will not be one for the purists. The rumble will likely appeal, however, to the crowd that appreciates a scrap between two limited but hardworking big men. Mollo especially is a balls to the wall type of warrior who ignores his lack of dazzling skills and goes to work. While McCline, the far greater experienced and more polished boxer who has a decent left jab when he wants to use it, is a man who can be very dangerous at any given time. So who will win?

Apart from age, McCline, 38-9-3(23) has every conceivable advantage - apart, perhaps, from hunger and wanting it more. "Big Time" has been there before, losing in challenges for all four recognised versions of the heavyweight title. He's come close to grabbing a belt in the past, most noticeably in his last-but-one ring appearance, against WBC boss Sam Peter, but McCline again went home empty handed. Perhaps somewhat used to losing and perhaps subconsciously resigned to the fact that he will never win the big one, Jameel's desire might not be what it once was. Mollo, on the other hand, is as hungry as can be for his first title shot.

But hunger can only get a fighter so far. McCline must be made the favourite in this fight. Bigger, taller (6'6" to Mollo's 6'1"), holding a reach advantage and having learnt a thing or two after having been in with the very best men in the division over the years, the 38-year-old may have too much for the raw slugger from Illinois.

Should he avoid getting caught cold as he's jumped on by a Mollo who comes out of the blocks with a hundred mile an hour onslaught, McCline should be able to use his physical advantages and slowly knock the fight out of the younger man. The gutsy brawler who went 12 hard rounds with Andrew Golota back in January (Golota, by the way, also appears on November's show, reportedly against Ray Austin) will give it his best and may give McCline a few scares early on, but ultimately the veteran will win.

It promises to be lively in the initial four or five rounds, before "Big Time" gets his first win since July of 2006. Look for McCline to stop a busted up Mollo in around 8 or 9 rounds.

Article posted on 10.10.2008



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