PBC on Spike Preview: Easter vs. Mendez, Broner vs. Theophane
By: William Holmes
On Friday night the D.C. Armory in Washington, DC will be the host site for Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on Spike TV’s broadcast. At least two bouts will be televised as Adrien Broner will defend his WBA Junior Welterweight title against Mayweather Promotions fighter Ashley Theophane and rising prospect Robert Easter Jr. will take on former world champion Argenis Mendez in the opening bout of the night.
Several highly rated prospects and contenders will be competing on the undercard and it wouldn’t be surprising if a few of them made it to the televised portion of the card on Friday night. Boxers such as Gervonta Davis, Anthony Peterson, and J’Leon Love will be fighting on the undercard.
The following is a preview of the main event of co-main event of the night.
Robert Easter Jr. (16-0) vs. Argenis Mendez (23-3-1); Lightweights
The first televised bout of the night will be between rising prospect Robert Easter Jr. and former world champion Argenis Mendez. This bout is a major step up for Easter and Mendez is a former world champion that is still in his athletic prime.
Easter does have an advantage in the physicals as he has a two inch height advantage as well as a five inch reach advantage. Easter is also three years younger than Mendez.
At this point in their careers Easter has the heavier hands of the two boxers. Easter has stopped thirteen of his opponents while Mendez only has twelve knockouts despite having seven more fights. Both boxers have a strong amateur background. Easter was a 2012 US Olympic Team Alternate and Mendez represented the Dominican Republic in the 2004 Summer Olympics.
Easter has been very active in the past two years and fought four times in 2014 and four times in 2015. This is his first fight in 2016. He has defeated the likes of Juan Solis, Miguel Mendoza, and Alejandro Rodriguez; but he has not faced anyone near the level of competition that Mendez presents.
Mendez, who is trained by Virgil Hunter, fought two times in 2015 and two times in 2014. He has gone 2-1 in his past three fights and has defeated the likes of Miguez Vazquez, Daniel Evangelista Jr., and Juan Carlos Salgado. His losses have come to Juan Carlos Salgado in their first meeting, Rances Barthelemy, and Jaime Sandoval by split decision early on in his career.
This will be a good fight and Mendez has never been stopped before. But Easter will be too tall and too long for Mendez and should win this bout by a decision.
Adrien Broner (31-2) vs. Ashley Theophane (39-6-1); WBA Junior Welterweight Title
Adrien Broner has been the subject of a lot of controversy in the past few years, and is currently facing pending robbery charges. However, the commission has allowed the fight on Friday to proceed despite the fact he’s facing serious charges.
Broner’s opponent, Ashley Theophane, is a past his prime journeyman fight with no major victories to his credit. Theophane, however, is promoted by Mayweather Promotions and that alliance may have helped him last this fight.
Broner has twenty three stoppages to his credit and has gone 4-1 in his past five fights. Theophane isn’t known for his power and only has eleven stoppages on his resume, but he is currently riding a six fight win streak and has never been stopped.
Broner is nine years younger than Theophane, but will be giving up about an inch and a half in height. However, Broner does have a two and a half inch reach. Both boxers have been active the past two years as Broner fought three times in 2015 and Theophane fought twice in 2015.
Broner has defeated the likes of Khabib Allakhverdiev, John Molina Jr., Emmanuel Taylor, Carlos Molina, Paulie Malignaggi, Antonio DeMarco, and Daniel Ponce DeLeon. Broner is also a former National Silver Golden Gloves Champion as an amateur.
Broner does have trouble when a boxer turns the fight into a brawl, as is evident in his two losses to Marcos Maidana and Shawn Porter.
Theophane has not defeated the quality of opponents that Broner has. Theophane’s biggest wins have come against Steve Upsher Chambers, Jason Cook, Lenny Daws, Delvin Rodriguez, and DeMarcus Corley. However, Theophane’s six losses are glaring and some of them have come against subpar competition. He has lost to the likes of Pablo Cesar Cano, Darren Hamilton, Danny Garcia, and Ali Oubaali.
This is a bout that Broner should win easily. Broner has handled distractions well before, and Friday will be no different. If Theophane can turn the bout into a brawl he stands a chance, but it seems unlikely that he’ll be able to solve the problem.