By Rudy Mondragón
This is an interesting match up that has the potential to be a very entertaining fight worth watching. You have Josesito Lopez (30-5, 18 KOs) who can box and at the same time brawl with his opponent. He is better suited to fight at the light welterweight division, but fighting tomorrow at the 147 lbs limit won’t be a bad thing for him. As long as he stays away from the middleweights in the future… Marcos Maidana’s (33-3, 30 KOs) knock out record speaks for itself. The cat can knock people out! He is a wild puncher who packs every punch with bad intentions. He destroyed Victor Ortiz and made him say “no mas” and almost finished off Amir Khan before Maidana punched himself out. Since he started training with Robert Garcia, I want to say that Maidana has improved his technical boxing skills and is working more on his defense. This may or may not be a factor tomorrow night.
Although many will not watch this fight and maybe only check ESPN late Saturday evening to see who won, I would nonetheless recommend tuning in. Josesito will need to box early and counter effectively on wild, missed Maidana punches. This will frustrate Maidana and force him to open up more and head hunt. If Josesito can stay composed and stick to a technical boxing game plan, then I can see Josesito winning a majority decision with his team biting off their finger nails the entire time. For Maidana to win, he will need to not punch himself out, not head hunt, be more mindful of his punches, and use his jab to set up heat shots and mix it up with body blows. He has a great corner, if he listens to Robert and keeps the fight close in the early rounds, I can see Maidana winning via TKO.
My prediction for this fight is an entertaining first 5 rounds. Josesito will try to box and keep some distance away from Maidana, but Maidana will pressure and connect with hard shots upstairs and down. This will force Josesito to engage in a brawl with Maidana in the middle of each round. This will gas Josesito and Maidana will enter rounds 6-8 ready to put his rival away. One thing these two have in common is that they both made Victor Ortiz quit. The only difference was that Maidana hurt Victor to the point that he wanted no more punishment. Josesito broke Victor’s jaw, forcing him to quit because he could not continue for health reasons (debatable as other fighters have continued with broken jaws). I say that because it says a lot about Maidana. He may go the distance, but most of the time he will lose because he tries so hard to finish off his opponents before the final bell. Had Ortiz and Josesito continued fighting, I think Victor would have pulled off the win. For this fight, I see Maidana fighting until he takes his man out. Marcos Rene Maidana will be victorias in 9 rounds via TKO because he will break his man down and pressure him the entire night.