Fight writers like to juice up the drama by pronouncing fights “must wins” and “crossroads” fights.
Funny, I saw a clip which said that Micky Ward NEEDED to win a 1996 fight, or else his career was in the tank, over, dead wood. Ward lost four fights before meeting Arturo Gatti for the first time, and conjuring dark magic with that rival for the ages.
Sometimes, a good effort in a loss can be as useful or more so in elongating a fighters’ career and earning prospects, just so you know.
But Sean Monaghan (29-1), the Long Island-based light heavyweight is himself calling his August 18 fight against Sullivan Barrera a must-win. He is, after all, 36 years old, and got stopped out by Marcus Browne when they collided in July 2017. Monaghan rebounded with a decision win over Evert Bravo in November, and is now facing another step-up caliber foe in the 21-2 Barrera.
The Cuban-born Florida resident Barrera is also 36, so time maybe isn’t on his side. A loss for either man could push them toward the exit door right quick, maybe, depending on how they perform.
I checked in with the affable Monaghan, who is managed by PJ Connolly and trained by Joe Higgins.
How, I asked him, did this fight with Barrera, promoted by Main Events, come together?
“I’ve been talking back and forth with Barrera for awhile now on Twitter,” the New Yorker told me.
“Finally, we’re gonna settle it! Jolene Mizzone, the matchmaker from Main Events called PJ and we made the deal. These are the challenges I want. I need names like this on my résumé. Two guys in a similar position in our careers, winner gets another big fight and it’s pretty much over for the loser.”
So, what are the stakes here, in a fight which will stream on Facebook?
“Do or die!” Monaghan stated.
And what does Mizzone think of this light heavy clash?
“I made it, of course I like it,” said the ace matchmaker. “It’s the type of fight for both guys that is interesting. Barrera after the Bivol loss (in March), did it take anything out of him? With Seanie he had his shot against an awkward southpaw (in Browne), he is now in another high-profile fight. Second chances, will he capitalize? Two guys who are rated in the top 10 that are fighting each other and they don’t have to!”
The 175 showdown streams on Facebook, and is the 10 rounds or less main event on a card to unfold in Bethlehem, PA.
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