By: Sean Crose
The biggest fight that all but the most serious of American boxing fans haven’t even heard of is going down Saturday at the Plazamedia Broadcasting Center in Munich, Germany. For there, Yuniel Dorticos and Mairis Briedis will battle to decide who is the winner of the Cruiserweight World Boxing Super Series, which has been running now for around two years. Covid-19 has, unsurprisingly, pushed back this fight repeatedly. The match will be aired live on ESPN+ here in America starting at 2:30 PM eastern time. The winner will receive the Muhammad Ali trophy and will walk out of the ring in possession of the IBF cruiserweight title belt.
The 24-1 Dorticos likes to employ an overhand right but has the ability to effectively put his punches together. He can also be particularly damaging with an uppercut. Having won all but two of his 24 victories by knockout, it’s clear the man can turn out the lights. In his single loss, Murat Gassiev was able to take advantage of Dortico’s willingness to stand right in front of an opponent, thus making himself an easy target. The fact that Gassiev was able to finish his man during the last minute of the fight showed that Dorticos’ defense left some things to be desired. Dorticos has won two in a row since that time, however, and was able to outright knock out Andrew Tabiti in his last fight.
Briedis has a good overhand right of his own, one which has allowed him to score highlight reel knockouts. Against Manuel Charr, he also showed that he could lay out someone who was moving him back (A lesson for Charr – if someone wants to shake hands, shake hands.). Yet Oleksandr Usyk showed what a nuanced defense could do against Briedis, as he made himself responsible for Briedis’ only loss to date.
Frankly, this has the makings of a very entertaining fight. In fact, it has the makings to be the most entertaining bout in a very boxing-heavy weekend. When one considers the level of matchup Dorticos-Briedes is, that’s really saying something. Ultimately, I think this is all going to come down to the little things. This is the sort of scenario where one small mistake can lead to either man being counted out by the referee. Each fighter really has to bring his A- game and not get lazy in there. Consistency in the ring will be the key to victory for both men.