TV Fights & Boxing Predictions: August 18 & 21, 2010
By Brian Gorman, Doghouse Boxing (Aug 18, 2010) Doghouse Boxing  
Erislandy Lara (12-0, 7 KOs) vs. Willie Lee (17-6, 11 KOs), junior middleweights (154 lb.)

Prediction: Lara by TKO.

Former Cuban amateur standout Lara has been moved along appropriately, now in his "gatekeeper" phase, having defeated Jose Varela, Grady Brewer and Danny Perez. It's hard to complain about someone moving along at this pace after only 12 bouts, but at this mode he'll probably have to advance more quickly than most. Lee has faced several notables in his modest 23 ring appearances over 10 years, including Chad Dawson, Vanes Martirosyarn, Sechew Powell and Yusaf Mack, and he beat Alex Bunema last year. Lee's been stopped in five of his six losses, and though smooth southpaw Lara lacks a killer instinct, he may get Lee out of there before the end of ten with an accumulation of fast , precise combinations.

Yordanis Despaigne (6-0, 4 KOs) vs. Frank Paines (11-0, 10 KOs), light heavyweights (175 lb.)

Prediction: Despaigne by decision.

Big-hitting Colombian alert: Paines is competing in his first bout in the U.S., and time and again we've learned to beware of Colombians knocking out undefeated prospects. However, a look behind the numbers: None of Paines' first eight opponents had ever won a professional bout, and his last two had lost four and three in a row. Still, he took care of business in all of those contests, so Despaigne should maintain a professional, deliberate pace. If he does, the 2004 Olympian (who lost to bronze medalist Andre Dirrell in Athens) should get another notch on his resume.

Saturday, August 21 at the Prudential Center, Newark, NJ (Integrated Sports PPV):

Tomasz Adamek (41-1, 27 KOs) vs. Michael Grant (46-3, 34 KOs), heavyweights (201+ lb.)

Prediction: Adamek by TKO.

They called this the "Big Challenge," a nod to Michael Grant's nickname. They could have called it "Big Practice for the Klitschkos." In case you're wondering why the smaller Adamek is bothering with a Michael Grant fight - other than to get another win before his beloved Newark faithful - Grant goes about 6'7" and 260 pounds, very close to the Klitschkos' dimensions. Everybody wins here: Adamek gets a showcase at home while prepping for the big boys, Grant gets a payday and a chance to get back in the mix if he can pull off the upset, and the local Polish crowd gets another likely celebration.

Joel Julio (35-4, 31 KOs) vs. Jamaal Davis (12-6, 6 KOs), junior middleweights (154 lb.)

Prediction: Julio by KO.

Julio has fallen short of expectations, beginning with a 2006 clear decision loss to Carlos Quintana, and now he's lost three of four, albeit to top-notch opposition. He appears to be gearing down to make another run, saying he'll move back down to welterweight in upcoming fights. He should still have enough left in the tank to be a tough out for most top 10 boxers from 147 to 154, and he can still whack.

Sadam Ali (8-0, 4 KOs) vs. Lenin Arroyo (20-12-1, 4 KOs), welterweights (147 lb.)

Prediction: Ali by decision.

Ali, a 2008 American Olympian, is a skilled and fast boxer. Arroyo's lost five in a row but has only been stopped once in his twelve losses, earlier this year by big puncher Mike Alvarado, and he's gone the distance with bangers like Mike Jones and Randall Bailey. Unless Ali makes Arroyo absorb too many clean blows that force a stoppage, he will probably have to settle for a wide decision.

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