Barboza Jr vs Mccomb Predictions: Barboza faces a brave foe

 | 19th April | 

3 mins read

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Arnold Barboza Jr takes on Sean McComb this Saturday, April 20, in a battle of world-ranked super lightweights. The bout takes place at the Barclays Center in New York, serving as the co-main event for Devin Haney vs Ryan Garcia. With two of their divisional rivals contesting the WBC super lightweight title in the DAZN headliner, Barboza and McComb will be out to impress. Here are my Barboza vs McComb predictions ahead of an intriguing chief support.

Barboza vs McComb Tips

  • Barboza on points @ 15/8
  • Fight to go the distance - Yes @ 6/4

Barboza has been there or thereabouts for a while. He boasts a 29-0 and a cabinet full of various sanctioning body ranking titles. He is the current WBO mandatory challenger. The WBC place Barboza fifth in their ratings while the IBF have him at number eight. The Ring magazine rank him as the seventh-best super lightweight in the world.

But there are question marks surrounding the Californian. Barboza is 32 years of age and is yet to trouble the title scene. The standout victory on his CV is a decision over Jose Pedraza, which was the third fight in a four-bout winless run for the Puerto Rican. Other luminaries Barboza has beaten include Mike Alvarado, who had peaked at world level a good six years before, and former title challengers Alex Saucedo and Danielito Zorrilla. 

Barboza has a solid record and you never truly know the ceiling of a fighter that remains unbeaten. But he lacks a true world class victim who he has vanquished close to their peak. McComb won’t give him that, but he is a solid opponent whose vanquishing would benefit Barboza immensely.

McComb is ranked eighth by the WBO by virtue of a fine run of form and the fact he holds the sanctioning body’s version of the European title. Since losing to Gavin Gwynne three years ago, McComb has gone 7-0 since. The Belfast boy has beaten solid Britain-based opposition like Kaisee Benjamin and Sam Maxwell during that run. Now he takes on the toughest challenge of his career so far, knowing a victory would set him on the world title hunt.

800x200The Northern Irishman rarely boxes outside of his homeland, having fought once in the United States alongside the occasional foray into England. Now he travels to the boxing hotbed of New York City in search of riches and underdog success.

This is a good piece of matchmaking. Both men come into the bout enjoying a fine run of form. Each also has something to prove, having excelled at their current level. Now they seek entry into the elite, with the path towards it running through the other. Barboza is 32 while McComb is 31. These boxers will be acutely aware that if they lose here, a future world title chance becomes increasingly remote. 

Stylistically, this has the look of a fight that’s going long. Barboza has stopped 11 of his 29 opponents while McComb has ended five of his 19 fights early. The latter is a slick southpaw who is accustomed to outboxing his foes using technique. Barboza has shown the adaptability to mix it up or go to the cards if he needs to. While this one isn’t as simple as boxer vs puncher, you feel that McComb would be slightly happier to go the distance.

With a shot at WBO champion Teofimo Lopez ostensibly in the offing for the victor, this is a huge undertaking for the fighters. While they are quite well-matched, I am leaning towards the measured orthodoxy of Barboza. He has quietly toiled for this spotlight, collecting the sort of wins that do little for your profile but plenty for your ranking. For all McComb’s trickery, I feel he will come up just a little short against the American. My pick is a Barboza victory on points at 15/8 before he finally moves on to the big fight he has long been searching for.

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