Sergio Mora-Bryan Vera - Who Wins “The Battle Of The Contenders?”

By James Slater - Former participants in the reality TV show “The Contender,” Sergio Mora and Bryan Vera will clash in a scheduled ten-rounder at super-middleweight on February 4th. The fight will go out live on ESPN2 and the winner of the Forth Worth rumble will be hoping a victory sets up bigger fights down the road.

Mora, who went on from winning “The Contender” in 2005 to capture the WBC 154-pound title with an upset points win over the late Vernon Forrest three years later, will be looked at as the favourite next year.. Having also drawn with “Sugar” Shane Mosley (one fight after losing the return to Forrest, via 12-round UD), the 30-year-old who is 22-1-2(6) has undeniably been in with the better opposition. Vera, who was stopped in the 2nd-round by Jaidon Codrington is his own “Contender” experience in 2007, has faced some good names himself, but he has lost to most of them.

The upset stoppage win over Andy Lee in 2008 proved the 28-year-old can be a very dangerous fighter, as did the 3rd-round TKO of Sebastian Demers Vera scored in his last-but-one fight. But Mora has a proven chin (never stopped) and he also has such an awkward style to look good against. Vera, 17-5(11) is a come-forward warrior who will look to take the battle to Mora - but will he be able to do so successfully?

The weight the fight is set to be fought at could prove to be a big factor. Mora has never fought above middleweight before, while Vera has fought and won at 168-pounds. “The Latin Snake’s” best showings have been down at 154, and stepping up to 168 may be a big task for the slightly older man. Vera destroyed Demers at super-middleweight, proving he has power at the higher weight.

Make no mistake, though Mora has the better pedigree, Vera is the puncher in this one. If, however, Mora can fight effectively up at 168, he should be able to get himself a points win. Vera has been stopped just twice (by Codrington and by the hard-hitting and always-aggressive James Kirkland), so it’s unlikely he will be overly troubled by Mora’s punches.

Vera, who saw a huge fight with former middleweight king Kelly Pavlik fall through back in November, will be up for this fight in a major way. But will Mora be as motivated? Having been in with the likes of Forrest and Mosley, Mora might look at the fight with Vera as a slight step backwards. If he does underestimate the Texan, the man from East LA could fond himself in trouble.

I go for Mora on points, but a Vera win would be no shocker

Article posted on 27.12.2010

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