Last time he was in action, New York Local 66 Laborers Union member, Joe Smith Jr, 23-1, 19 KO, spectacularly knocked Bernard Hopkins completely out of the ring and out of boxing. Now, mysteriously, he’s assigned the formidable task of prevailing against Sullivan Barrera, 19-1, 14 KO, this Saturday, July 15th in a return to the scene of his last spectacle, the Forum, Inglewood, California.
>>>>>Going>>>>> Going >>>>>
While I expect this to be a good fight between quality contenders, it’s very interesting in how Smith is being shunted aside after two of the hottest knockouts of 2016 as the away limited “away” fighter against the touted hometown heroes. Andre “Maternity” Ward was busy delivering the Kiss of Death to Boxing in his two matches with Sergey Kovalev, as Adonis Stevenson was busy fighting fringe contenders to pad out his bank account, and that title record that is looking smarter and smarter every day given how Kovalev and his promoter Main Events were treated by the Vega suits. They were near run out of town by horrific officiating in those two Ward bouts in spite of Kovalev’s fan friendly knockout fights that spiked interest in the moribund Lightheavy division.
“Just Another” Joe Smith leap frogged over his opposition to net a #4 Boxrec rating to Barrera’s #12 rating, so on paper this promises to be be a competitive bout, all dependant however by Barrera’s using his traditional come forward boxing style. The WBC International light heavyweight title bauble is the minor trifle being fought for.
I’m picking Joe, but Barrera could prove to be a banana peel and the officiating? These days you’d be better counting on a roll of the dice in a craps game than count on boxing officials. Sad indictment of a noble sport empowered with fair and equitable rules they seldom enforce except in favor of their orchestrated result…only in boxing!