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The Sports Daily > Undercard Superstar
The Ecstasy of Gold: 5 Best Title Fights of the Weekend

 

The championship fight. The pinnacle of achievement across combat sports for centuries. A premiere attraction that draws millions every year. But not all title bouts are created equally.

 

So which title bouts every week are the ones to watch? We’ll look over every title fight from across the combat sports landscape and give you the five best based on five criteria:

 

  • Competitiveness: Is this an even matchup? Or just a warm body to throw at a champion? It’s a title fight, so we want the best possible at that division in that promotion.
  • Excitement: How exciting will this fight be? A clash of two elite talents throwing everything they have at each other in an attempt to win the gold? Or a half-dead plod-fest devoid of action or risk?
  • Juice: A sort of catch-all term for all the factors behind the matchup. Is there a story leading up to the match? A true rivalry? Anticipated rematch? Do the fighters dislike each other? Were the circumstances leading to the fight extraordinary, or was it just a promoter putting two names against each other? Is there a lot of excitement or hype going into it?
  • Prestige: Applies to the belt itself, but also to the fighter wearing it. Is this a long-tenured champion defending? Is this an interim title or one that was vacated? Has the champion increased the prestige of the title or is this a fight that will increase the prestige of it?
  • Viewing Ease: We all don’t mind suffering for our art (or hobbies), but sometimes paying twenty dollars for a choppy stream, or searching your cable plan for a channel you’re pretty sure was just invented three days ago in the 6000s isn’t the best of times. How easy, affordable, and stress-free is this bout to watch?

 

 

So here are your five best gold options for the weekend.

 

t1. WBA Super/WBC/IBF/IBO World Middleweight Championships: Gennady Golovkin (c) (36-0) vs. Daniel Jacobs (32-1)

When/Where: Saturday, 9:00pm, Pay-Per-View

Competitiveness: 3
Excitement: 5: It’s freaking GGG, it’s always must-see.
Juice: 2
Prestige: 5: It’s three out of four world titles and the highest secondary title, it’s hard to rate this any higher.
Viewing Ease: 4

Total: 19

 

t1. WSOF Featherweight Championship: Lance Palmer (c) (11-2) vs. Andre Harrison (15-0)

When/Where: Saturday, 11:00pm, NBC Sports

Competitiveness: 5: This is my favorite matchup of the weekend. WSOF made a savvy-ass signing by poaching Harrison away from Titan FC, and Party Palmer is a fun Alpha Male product who is a staple of the WSOF title scene. This is going to be great.
Excitement: 4
Juice: 3: Not once of animosity or story, but just of pure matchmaking. This is an outstanding matchup featuring two of the best featherweights outside of the UFC.
Prestige: 3
Viewing Ease: 4

Total: 19

 

3. WSOF Heavyweight Championship: Blagoi Ivanov (c) (14-1) vs. Shawn Jordan (19-7)

When/Where: Saturday, 11:00pm, NBC Sports

Competitiveness: 4
Excitement: 5: The rare heavyweight bout that I have faith will deliver. Both have good gas tanks for heavyweights, and both are extremely athletic, which could make for some awesome Sambo vs. Boxing fighting.
Juice: 2
Prestige: 3
Viewing Ease: 4: Fucking WSOF and their start times. Christ’s sakes.

Total: 18

 

4. WBC World Junior Bantamweight Championship: Roman Gonzalez (c) (46-0) vs. Wisaksil Wangek (41-4-1)

When/Where: Saturday, 9:00pm, Pay-Per-View

Competitiveness: 2: Wangek is a quality boxer, but fighting a string of six-rounders isn’t the best preparation for taking on the best pound-for-pound boxer in the world.
Excitement: 4
Juice: 1
Prestige: 5
Viewing Ease: 4: Yeah, the $65 price tag is a little jarring, but, hell, after paying $60 for UFC 209, it can’t be any worse.

Total: 16

 

5. Enfusion World Female 64kg Championship: Anke Van Gestel (c) (33-11-3) vs. Niahm Kinehan

When/Where: Saturday, 3:00pm, Enfusionlive.com

Competitiveness: 4: Intriguing matchup, as Van Gestel is one of the best young female muay thai talents in the world, and Kinehan is relatively unknown, but was an extremely accomplished amateur fighter.
Excitement: 2
Juice: 1
Prestige: 3
Viewing Ease: 4: High marks because of the low price tag and Enfusion usually offers a quality streaming service.

Total: 14