Smith vs. Zepeda Today: Dalton Looks to Boost Resume in Sheffield Showdown

By Chris Carlson - 03/23/2024 - Comments

This Saturday afternoon (American Time), streaming live on DAZN from the Sheffield Arena, Dalton Smith faces Jose Zepeda in a step-up opportunity. Sandy Ryan vs. Terri Harper is the co-feature in what should be a good matchup as well. This card is promoted by Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing. Jose Zepeda is a solid veteran boxer who will be a legit litmus test for the unproven Dalton Smith.

Dating all the way back to 2015, Jose Zepeda suffered a dislocated shoulder in the 2nd round versus Terry Flanagan. Jose built his way back to a title shot, winning 7 in a row. His fight against Jose Ramirez was a highly competitive affair. Zepeda boxed well in the first part of the fight. Jose’s jab and footwork caused issues for a come-forward Ramirez. Eventually, Jose Ramirez was able to cut the ring off, attack Zepeda’s body, and land the heavier punches.

Later in the fall of that same year Zepeda earned his best win at the time over Jose Pedraza. Two fights later Zepeda would engage in a hellish war with Ivan Baranchyk. In what was a truly brutal scarp featuring a combined 8 knockdowns. In 2022 and 2023 Jose Zepeda would lose to Regis Prograis and Richardson Hitchins. Wear and tear has clearly caught up to Zepeda and rightfully so, delivering us boxing fans a few grueling performance.

Does Jose Zepeda have enough in the tank to give young Dalton Smith a run for his money? The 14-0 rising prospect, who was born in Sheffield, Yorkshire, will be looking to give his hometown a show. In his last time out, Dalton Smith handled Sam Maxwell with ease, stopping him in the 7th round. Dalton is an efficient puncher who doesn’t throw wild combinations. One could say Smith gets a little wild with his lead, leaping left hooks, though.

Beyond the leaping left hooks, Dalton likes to use his jab either to score points or paw with it to distract his opponent and gauge distance. He has good timing, is quick-handed, and generally looks to operate in the middle of the ring. Dalton will need to be patient and smart from the beginning when dealing with a crafty guy like Zepeda. Smith has a potent right hand. He likes to aim at the body or head. He will also throw that right hand straight behind a jab or looping it to the upstairs target.

Both men have sustained damage in their careers. Whether we’re talking punishment and injury for Zepeda or getting cut as Dalton has in his last two fights, it will take a little while for Dalton Smith to adjust to Jose Zepeda, so look for a tit-for-tat type of vibe in the first couple of frames. Youth and energy from the home crowd will likely prevail by night’s end. If you believe Dalton Smith doesn’t have the goods, Jose Zepeda is great value, sitting around a +225 to +250 on the boxing betting sites.

My Official Prediction is Dalton Smith by Majority-Decision.

Dalton Smith 139.6 vs. Jose Zepeda 139.6
Sandy Ryan 146.2 vs. Terri Harper 145.9
Campbell Hatton 139.7 vs. James Flint 139
Ishmael Davis 153.8 vs. Troy Williamson 158.2
Nico Leivars 121.3 vs. Piotr Mirga 121.1
Liam Cameron 174.8 vs. Hussein Itaba 173.3
Emmanuel Buttigieg 157.2 vs. Bartlomiej Stryczek 156
Connan Murray 158 vs. Edgar Kemsky 156.6


Side Note: Also, keep an eye out for Sandy Ryan vs. Teri Harper, along with Ishmael Davis vs. live dog Troy Williamson on the DAZN undercard.

Written by Chris Carlson, Host/Producer of The Rope A Dope Radio Podcast Available at Follow on Twitter @RopeADopeRadio