WBA Super/WBC World Junior Bantamweight Championships: Juan Francisco Estrada (c) (41-3) vs. Roman Gonzalez (c) (50-2)
Luke Irwin: After suffering two losses, including a crushing knockout at the hands of Srisaket Sor Rungvisai in 2017, Chocolatito has crawled his way back, become a world champion, and is now rematching Estrada nine years later in an attempt to keep unifying the division. What a story. Both men are legendary fighters, but when you look at how Carlos Cuadras was able to batter Estrada, it provided a blueprint that Gonzalez could reasonably follow. He’s still the more talented boxer, and is better in close, with Estrada really unable to punish him on counters. It should be a hell of a fight, but I still think Chocolatito has enough gas in the tank to have Estrada accrue more damage over twelve rounds. Gonzalez via UD.
WBA Super World Junior Flyweight Championship: Hiroto Kyoguchi (c) (14-0) vs. Axel Aragon Vega (14-3-1)
Luke: Vega got stopped by Wilfredo Mendez challenging for the Minimumweight championship two fights ago, now he comes up to 108 to try his luck again. He’s only 20, so a world title might be in his future, but it doesn’t look like it’ll be this time out. Kyoguchi via R6 TKO.
WBA/WBC/WBO/IBF/IBO World Female Welterweight Championships: Jessica McCaskill (c) (9-2) vs. Cecilia Braekhus (36-1)
Luke: The biggest upset in women’s boxing history gets run back, as Braekhus tries to reclaim her spot on the throne. Was McCaskill’s win a fluke? Did Braekhus have an off night? Or is McCaskill truly Cecilia’s equal? Or, Matt Hughes had Dennis Hallman, Ali had Ken Norton, most fighters have that one fighter that gives them fits, is this McCaskill? Women’s boxing, in particular, is where technical skill rises to the top because the sport has so little power in it. Braekhus is an absolutely brilliant boxer and I can’t see that level of skill falling twice. Braekhus via UD.
2021 Picks Record: 26-19 (57.8%)