It’s been a couple weeks, but hey, we’ve got predictions again! And they got screwed up anyway!
On that note, obviously the main pick of the week was going to be Eubank vs Benn, which of course has been canceled, so it may seem odd that our only full pick is for Martinez vs Ancajas 2, which is up first of three fights on Showtime tomorrow. But (1) that’s because that’s the best, most interesting matchup of the show, and (2) it was too late to order everyone to add a little on why Fundora will beat Ocampo.
Fernando Martinez vs Jerwin Ancajas 2
Scott Christ (66-31)
Martinez’s win last time out over Ancajas was a major betting upset, but it was one that I really, genuinely liked, not just on gut feeling but genuinely liked, and I cashed in on it with real life actual greenback money, parlaying it with that night’s other big upset, Hector Garcia over Chris Colbert. I mention these things to help soften looking at my predictions record here. Am I smarter than I seem? Am I pretending for the kicks? Does the sun simply shine on a dog’s ass some days, Billy Hoyle? We’ll never know.
I like Martinez to repeat. Ancajas has talked a lot about struggling with the weight last time, to the point it was initially expected and reported he would pass on this to move up to 118. But he backtracked on that, which I don’t love, and if he struggled months ago, why would he have an easy time now? But I didn’t pick Martinez last time because I thought Ancajas would struggle with weight, I picked him because Ancajas had been looking vulnerable to me in recent fights, and let’s be real, he’s avoided the real top matchups in a hot 115 lb division for a reason, probably. Martinez UD-12
Wil Esco (78-19)
Ancajas lost a clear decision the last time he faced Martinez, and unless he’s able to change things around in a big way I’m having difficulty seeing him tipping the scales in his favor in this rematch. It’s possible that Ancajas really does change things up to give himself a much better chance here, but I sort of think he already is what he’s going to be.
Martinez was successful punching in between Ancajas’ combinations the first time around, and I think he adopts the same sort of strategy that I’m unsure Ancajas can nullify. With that being said, Martinez will take the confidence of having already beaten Ancajas before into this second meeting, and I think that will be plenty sufficient to do the job once more. Martinez UD-12
John Hansen (75-22)
Shout out to Martinez’s big upset the first time around, which was the first major piece in Scott’s Sizzler bet coming through on a very fun night of watching boxing. Still waiting for my steak and sides, for the record.
Ancajas got absolutely beaten the hell up that night, and his immediate reaction to the experience was to reject a rematch. He said his body betrayed him, making weight was too great a strain, and he needed to move up to bantamweight. His language after the fight was troubling: “My body betrayed me.” “My brain wouldn’t respond.” Not the sort of thing that inspires a ton of confidence in his chances after reversing course and jumping right back into a 115 pound rematch with Martinez.
But, I’m inclined to trust whatever Ancajas learned about his body over the past 7 months. I doubt this is a check-cashing exercise for him, as a 30 year old with his talent should be able to make much more money at 118 pounds than what he’ll likely get in a support fight on a marginal card at a weight he can’t actually stomach, literally and figuratively. Ancajas taking this fight means he’s either done and knows it, getting whatever he can in his most immediately marketable fight option, or he believes his body won’t let him down again.
I can’t fathom willingly and intentionally signing up for another pounding like what Ancajas got the first time around, so I believe that the man believes in himself. And, if he’s right, all the factors that made him such a favorite last time around are still in play. Ancajas UD-12
Patrick Stumberg (79-18)
Besides the sheer violence they brought to the table the first time around, what makes this a fun matchup to consider is the mystery of whether Jerwin Ancajas’ excuses were legit. He clearly does have the tools to beat Martinez; while Martinez did show off some solid defense to go along with his mauling inside, Ancajas found a lot of early success keeping “Pumita” at the end of his jab. Then “Pretty Boy’s” legs started to give out faster than could be attributed to Martinez’s body work, and he just couldn’t keep up in the pocket.
Ancajas claimed afterwards that a bad weight cut compromised him after a few rounds, and if he’s telling the truth, I like his chances here. His win over Jonathan Rodriguez showed that he can ordinarily keep pace with aggressive opponents and he clearly has the edge at a distance. I just can’t shake the feeling that this is another Alberto Machado vs Andrew Cancio situation where, while the weight issue might be legit, there’s an underlying weakness that Martinez found. Plus, the way Ancajas committed to going to 118 before backtracking has me concerned. I say we get a repeat, Ancajas holding his own early before Martinez finds more and more success getting inside and ripping power shots for the win. Martinez UD-12
Sebastian Fundora vs Carlos Ocampo
- Scott: Fundora TKO-7
- Wil: Fundora TKO-8
- John: Fundora TKO-4
- Patrick: Fundora TKO-5
Carlos Adames vs Juan Macias Montiel
- Scott: Adames TKO-10
- Wil: Adames UD-12
- John: Adames TKO-9
- Patrick: Adames UD-12