PBC on CBS Preview: Keith Thurman vs. Danny Garcia, Erickson Lubin vs. Jorge Cota
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night one of the best fights that could be made in the welterweight division will happen at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York as Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia will meet to unify the WBA and WBC welterweight titles.
This is a fight that many fans have been salivating over.
The co-main event of the night will be between Erickson Lubin and Jorge Cota in a WBC Junior Middleweight eliminator. The undercard that will not be shown on CBS will feature high level boxers such as Andrzej Fonfara, Chad Dawson, Mario Barrios, and Heather Hardy.
The following is a preview of the televised CBS card.
Erickson Lubin (17-0) vs. Jorge Cota (25-1); Junior Middleweights
At first glance this fight appears to be a competitive fight.
Both boxers are still relatively young and have good records. Lubin is twenty one years old and eight years younger than Cota, but Cota is still below the age of thirty. Both boxers have very good records with only one loss between them.
However, a closer look reveals that Lubin is the better prospect of the two.
On paper, Cota appears to be the stronger puncher of the two. He has twenty two knockouts for a stoppage ratio of 85%. Lubin has twelve knockouts with a stoppage ratio of 71%. However, Cota has fought nearly his entire career in Mexico against less than stellar opposition.
Cota’s only big win came against Yudel Johnson in 2015, which was his only bout in 2015. Cota had zero bouts in 2016. Cota was defeated by Marco Antonio Rubio.
Lubin has defeated the likes of Juan Ubaldo Cabrera, Ivan Montero, and Daniel Sandoval. Lubin has never tasted defeated and was the 2012 US National Police Athletic League Gold Medalist as well as a former Golden Gloves gold medalist.
Lubin has also been considerably more active than Cota. Cota has only fought once since 2015, while Lubin fought five times in 2015 and four times in 2016.
This is a showcase fight for Lubin to get a win against an opponent with a good record but an empty record.
Keith Thurman (27-0) vs. Danny Garcia (33-0); WBC/WBA Welterweight Titles
Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia will fight to determine who is the best welterweight boxer in the world, outside of Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr.
And maybe outside of Kell Brook and Errol Spence Junior. And maybe outside of Timothy Bradley Jr. and Terence Crawford if he ever decides to make the jump up to 147.
But regardless, this is an excellent fight between two undefeated boxers that are twenty eight years old. They are both known for having some power, as Thurman has stopped twenty two of his opponents and Garcia has stopped eighteen of his opponents.
The winner will have two belts in the division and will also put themselves in a good position to face Floyd Mayweather Jr., if he were to ever end his retirement and not fight a UFC fighter.
Thurman will be giving up about one inch in height to Garcia but will have a slight half an inch reach advantage. Garcia has been slightly more active than Thurman and fought twice in 2016 and in 2015. Thurman fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015.
Both boxers had good national amateur careers. Thurman was a runner up in the US Olympic trials and Garcia was a US National Amateur champion.
Both boxers have an impressive list of defeated opponents. Thurman has defeated the likes of Shawn Porter, Luis Collazo, Robert Guerrero, Leonard Bundu, Jesus Soto Karass, Diego Chavez, Jan Zaveck, and Carlos Quintana. However, Thurman has not had a KO or TKO victory in his past five fights.
Garcia has won three of his past five fights by stoppage and has defeated the likes of Samuel Vargas, Robert Guerrero, Paulie Malignaggi, Lamont Peterson (questionable), Mauricio Herrera (questionable), Lucas Matthysse, Zab Judah, Erik Morales, Amir Khan, and Kendall Holt.
This is a tough fight to pick and both boxers have been able to come up on the winning end of some close decisions. Thurman however is more comfortable fighting in the welterweight division and doesn’t have the gift decisions that Garcia has.
It will be a close fight and could go either way, but Thurman has a slight edge going into Saturday night.
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