Premier Boxing Champions and Showtime returns to Minneapolis for a tripleheader at the Armory tonight, but this time it won’t involve a blizzard or below zero temps. Carlos Adames looks to stay in prime position by taking on former unified 154-pound champ Julian Williams in the main event in what should be a good “TV fight” night. On the Showtime undercard, Erickson Lubin climbs back on the saddle facing Luis Aries along with a battle of unbeatens in Fernando Daniel Martinez vs. Jade Bornea as the co-feature.
Luckily for everyone involved who’s traveling to the upper Midwest, the Minnesota weather is much nicer now than it was back in February, which featured a snowstorm followed by freezing temperatures. The action inside the armory ring will be as hot as the weather, with three bouts that should produce plenty of entertainment even with lopsided on-paper boxing odds. Let’s start with the headlining bout between the ever-improving Carlos Adames vs. Julian ‘J-Rock’ Williams.
Since taking his first loss as a professional in 2019, the Dominican native Carlos Adames has steadied the ship and continues to impress, especially in his last two outings. Dispatching of a normally game Juan Macias Montiel in 3 rounds in October 2022, and now his points win over Sergiy Derevyanchenko aged nicely after the performance Sergiy put on versus Jamie Munguia a short while ago. Boxing politics have got in the way for Carlos, as the WBC should’ve either made Jermall Charlo champion in recess or stripped him of his 160-pound strap. As the saying goes, it is what it is, and now Carlos has to focus on looking great this Saturday.
His opponent ‘J-Rock’ Williams, is past his prime, but at least he was able to get a full training camp in rather than a short-notice fight. If Williams does have some gas left in the tank, he will be in this fight in the opening few rounds based on skill and experience. That said, look for Adames to land flush resulting in a reverse fortune for Williams. After a two-way start for around 3 to 5 frames, Adames will outwork and outland J-Rock bringing the armory crowd to their feet. If successful, here’s hoping the WBC will give Carlos Adames his just due with some much-needed clarity.
My Official Prediction is Carlos Adames by mid to late-round TKO.
15-0 fighter and super flyweight titlist Fernando Daniel Martinez defends the belt he won from Jerwin Ancajas against the unbeaten prospect Jade Bornea, who’s looking to make his own statement. Bornea’s resume may be thin but don’t be surprised if Jade makes this a competitive dual. After all, Martinez hadn’t faced the best competition heading into his decisive wins over Jerwin Ancajas. Bornea has a good pedigree from the amateurs and won his title eliminator over Mohammed Obbadi in grand fashion via a body shot in the 3rd round. This boxing podcaster fully expects a good action scrap that won’t take long to pop off.
In the opener, Erickson Lubin vs. Luis Arias in a scheduled 10-round bout that should tell us where Lubin is post-knockout loss in a fight-of-the-year candidate for 2022. Lubin touched the canvas in the second round only to return the favor in round 7, dropping Sebastian Fundora. Coming off the second stoppage of his career, Lubin is in a do-or-die position in a deep junior middleweight division. As previously mentioned, a full camp should also give Luis Arias his best chance at pulling an upset. Arias’ inconsistency from fight to fight is an issue, shocking Jarrett Hurd a little over two years ago, only to underperform in a split-decision loss to Vaughn Alexander. Once again, the styles should match up to deliver for the live audience and the fans watching at home or on the SHO app.
My Official Predictions: Martinez via SD and Lubin via UD.
Side Note: The best matchup of the weekend on paper is the rematch between Joshua Franco and Kazuto Ioka. The pair fought to a draw on New Year’s Eve, and both men threw a crazy amount punches in the process. Franco was the aggressor outworking Ioka throwing 1412 punches to 797. The pause for that stat is Ioka landed 214 to 202 overall, having lots of success to the body. Age has to factor in, and Ioka, recently turning 34 compared to Franco, age 27, will play a role in the outcome. Add to that fact Joshua Franco has a track record of delivering a better product in the rematches. One can assume it will be a razor-close matchup, but this boxing head favors Franco. Obviously, Joshua will need to be more accurate the second time around. Unfortunately, as of Thursday night, the fight doesn’t have a broadcast home in America.
My Official Prediction is Joshua Franco by Majority Decision.
Written by Chris Carlson, Host/Producer of The Rope A Dope Radio Podcast Available at www.blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio