Update: Joseph Parker weighed in at 108.9kg, while Fa tipped the scales at 118.1kg. Coverage begins at 6:30 a.m. UK / 1:30 a.m. ET / 7:30 p.m. NZST. The main event ringwalks are anticipated around 9.30 a.m. UK / 4.30 a.m. ET / 10.30 p.m. NZST – Watch LIVE on DAZN (click here)
The first big heavyweight fight of the new year (and this fight is especially big in New Zealand), Joseph Parker and Junior Fa will finally get the chance to settle their rivalry this Saturday. Having seen the fight postponed, the two rival heavyweights are both looking at getting the win, with both guys eyeing a KO victory.
Former WBO heavyweight champ Parker, the far more experienced fighter of the two, says he wants a statement win, that he will be looking to get to Fa “early.”
This fight could certainly prove explosive – for however long (or short) it lasts. Fa may be lacking in terms of Parker’s world-class experience, but the big guy is physically strong and he really thinks he can win this.
This fight has really captured the attention of all of New Zealand. Parker and Fa have a history, the two men having split 4 amateur fights from way back when, the two going 2-2. Parker, almost certainly correctly, says he is a totally different fighter now compared to back then.
Parker is aiming for bigger fights and he has to do a number on Fa if he’s to get them. There is talk of fresh talks taking place for a Parker-Dereck Chisora fight, this one a good fight that also got postponed; Parker suffering from that spider bite. But Fa aims to ruin Parker’s plans.
Parker is the favorite to win on Saturday and it would be a pretty big upset if Fa tore up the script. But as we all know, anything can happen when two heavyweights get in the ring and start throwing big punches. Added to the chances of an upset, is the fact that these are two more fighters who have been inactive as of late due to the coronavirus. We’ve seen inactivity cause the defeat of a heavy favorite just recently, with Josh Warrington’s shocker of a loss to Mauricio Lara. When two guys collide, and both of them are rusty, pretty much anything can happen. These are strange times for all fighters and no-one has had ideal preparations for a fight.
Parker, 27-2(21) has not fought for a full year, his last bout seeing him score a KO over Shawndell Winters. Fa, 19-0(10) has not fought since November of 2019, when he pounded out a UD over Devin Vargas. Fa is the less experienced fighter but he is actually the older man by a couple of years at age 31.
So who wins on Saturday? If the form book is to be obeyed, if Parker is not affected by his inactivity, if the former WBO champ is not himself caught early, it looks like being his night. Fa may be rusty himself and maybe Parker will indeed get his man “early.”
Fa is easily taking the biggest fight of his entire career here and he should be suitably pumped up and motivated. As for Parker, if he can’t get that early win, maybe he will feel disappointed in his performance. Has Parker put unneeded pressure on himself by talking about a quick KO win?
The action will hopefully prove to be lively, and we could get a fun fight, before Parker’s class and big-fight experience take over. Parker by stoppage in the middle rounds.