This Saturday during the afternoon and at night in the States, boxing fans have two interesting main events to sink their teeth into. Efe Ajagba continues his climb to a title shot facing Joseph Goodall live on ESPN+. On the other side of the pond, Joe Cordina defends his 130-pound strap versus Edward Vasquez live on DAZN. Beyond the headliners, we should get some solid fights on both undercards.
A little over two years ago, Efe Ajagba took his first loss as a professional to Frank Sanchez. A couple of decent victories lands Efe in with a bit of a surprise opponent in Joseph Goodall. Goodall was defeated in 2022 by a 5-0 fighter by the name of Justis Huni but was able to bounce back by beating Stephen Shaw by 6th round TKO. If Efe decides to bang it out with Goodall, he could be in for a long night, so let’s break down some of the items to look for in this ESPN+ main event.
Goodall isn’t the most fast-handed, but he is a good combination puncher with plenty of pop. Efe will need to use his quality jab to keep Goodall at bay. If Efe can take advantage of the reach and Joseph’s aggression, it will help set traps. If Efe wants to bang it out, it decreases his chance of getting his hand raised. Don’t get me wrong, Efe is capable of landing a bomb during an exchange, but there is also a price to pay going to war in the trenches.
Really, this comes down to who can score points with the jab, which will be Efe, and who can avoid the right hand. Both men are very susceptible to right hands, and that makes Goodall’s best path to victory landing his. If you really do like Goodall, it’s definitely worth taking out a flyer, given he’s anywhere ranging from +400 all the way up to +500 as an underdog.
My Official Prediction is Efe Ajagba by Unanimous Decision.
Joe Cordina busted on the world scene when he made quick work of the IBF 130-pound champion Kenichi Ogawa via right hand. Unfortunately, that would be his only fight in 2022 due to injury. The IBF stripped him of the belt which Shavkatdzhon Rakhimov and Zelfa Barrett fought for the vacated version. Earlier this year, Cordina got his belt back by winning a split decision over Rakhimov. In walks heavy underdog Edward Vasquez to see if he can upset the apple cart by pulling off an upset over Joe.
Back in early 2022, Vasquez lost a disputed split decision to Raymond Ford. In that fight, he showed he belonged in the contender range; it should be noted that was at featherweight. Vasquez throws fairly quick punches in combination. The lead right may be his favorite punch, but he attacks the head and body with hooks using both hands. On his way to the inside, Edward has a fairly good defense as he moves his head and upper body. The one item besides having just 3 knockouts in 17 bouts is a bad habit of leaning forward, leaving wide-open holes in his defense when he punches.
Look for Joe Cordina to use his jab and movement to take the opening rounds. Pivoting and clinching in spots will help contain what Vasquez will be trying to accomplish. If Joe remains patient, he will be able to pick off Vasquez once he times Edward’s upper body movements. Edward will have success as he did against Ford, no doubt, but it won’t be enough for a decision victory. The lack of punching power will likely be the difference but could also give Cordina too much confidence in the early goings, giving away rounds he shouldn’t be. This boxing podcasters expects a competitive within-in-the-rounds type bout, resulting in a clean win for Cordina.
My Official Prediction is Joe Cordina by Unanimous Decision.
Weights: Efe Ajagba 237.6 vs. Joe Goodall 233.5
Raymond Muratalla 134 vs. Diego Torres Nunez 134.8
Raymond Muratalla Vs Diego Torres Pose
Joe Cordina 129.9 vs. Edward Vazquez 128.8
Sivenathi Nontshinga 107.7 vs. Adrian Curiel Dominguez 107.9
Souleymane Cissokho 146.6 vs. Isaias Lucero 147
Side Note: On the undercard for ESPN+, keep an eye out for a 50-50 on paper bout between William Foster III and Henry Lebron. Also, Raymond Muratalla is always fun to watch as he takes on Diego Torres Nunez. On DAZN, a rematch in Julissa Alejandra Guzman vs. Ramla Ali should be nip and tuck. Also check out Yokasta Valle vs. Anabel Ortiz.
Written by Chris Carlson, Host/Producer of The Rope A Dope Radio Podcast Available at www.blogtalkradio.com/ropeadoperadio Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio