Fight night tips: Best bets for Errol Spence v Lamont Peterson
We make our pick for the IBF welterweight title fight at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, where the undefeated champion faces a long-time contender who once beat Amir Khan.
In May, Errol Spence came to the UK for the first time to fight IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook.
Spence dismantled the Yorkshireman, stopping him in 11 rounds to take the belt.
The 27-year-old was already considered one of boxing’s brightest prospects, but after taking out Brook – who was then undefeated at welterweight – he is now considered one of the best fighters on the planet.
Spence, a southpaw, was incredibly slick in the win at Bramall Lane, popping in and out with combinations and rarely getting hit.
He also showed off a surprising amount of power, breaking Brook’s eye socket with a right hand in the seventh round.
There are very few welterweights as balanced as Spence, and Peterson – a good, but never elite fighter – isn’t one of them.
The 33-year-old is a tough, hard-worker with wins over big names like Amir Khan and Felix Diaz in the past, and his three defeats have come against former world champions Tim Bradley, Lucas Matthysse and Danny Garcia.
He won the WBA (regular) title in his welterweight debut against David Avanesyan last February, which he vacated in order to pursue this fight with Spence.
Peterson is, however, a one-dimensional fighter. He’ll come forward against Spence and try to fight on the inside, but lacks the nous to trouble the champion without taking plenty of punishment himself.
Spence isn’t a one-punch KO specialist, but his precision allows him to do sustained damage. He’s stopped 19 of his 22 opponents to date, including each of his last nine.
The champion is the clear favourite on Saturday night and should justify his price with yet another dominant victory.
Peterson’s durability means he should make it into the second half of the fight, but his inactivity over the past year - along with the fact that he’s only fought once at this weight before - will go against him on this occasion.