On Saturday, October 17th, Top Rank boxing in conjunction with ESPN will present a must see boxing event live from the MGM Grand Conference Center in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The main event of the night is a lightweight unification bout as the WBO, WBA and WBC champ Vasiliy Lomachenko (14-1, 14 KOS) takes on the IBF champ Teofimo Lopez Jr. (15-0, 12 KOs).
The co-main event is a junior welterweight contest between the Top 10 ranked Arnold Barboza Jr. (24-0, 10 KOs) taking on the former title contender Alex Saucedo (30-1, 19 KOs).
This boxing event will have a three fight main card that’s set to begin 10PM ET on ESPN+. The preliminary card has a start time of 7:30PM ET and can also be seen on ESPN.
Online betting sites have released some odds and props for this Top Rank boxing event. Let’s step into the betting ring, set up these picks with a stiff jab, and score a late round TKO with our predictions.
Fourteen fights. Fourteen knockouts within the first three minutes of action.@EdgarBerlangaJr has had quite the start to his pro career. (via @StevESPNKim) https://t.co/anSzWlMMGw
As of this writing, there are no betting odds for this fight. You can expect odds to be available sometime this week as fight night draws near. With that said, we can still get an idea of what the odds could be by looking back at each fighter’s recent bouts.
I have no doubt that Edgar Berlanga will come in as a heavy betting favorite. In his last fight against Eric Moon, Berlanga was a favorite in the range of -2653 to -10000. I expect that to be the case for this fight as well.
There’s very little betting data for Lanell Bellows and that’s mostly due to his status as a journeyman fighter without many notable bouts. You can expect Bellows’ odds to be significantly high for his underdog role in this matchup.
Berlanga vs Bellows Preview
Lanell Bellows enters this weekend’s bout as an underdog with pundits and fans as well as boxing betting sites. He’s typically called in to test rising prospects and often failing as of late.
Bellows last competed in February and upset Malcolm Jones via 4th round KO. He’s won two fights in a row, which snapped a four fight winless streak. Bellows has fought five times since the beginning of 2019 and has gone 2-2-1. He will be giving up at least three inches in height and a few inches in reach.
Edgar Berlanga is just 23 years old, but well on his way up the rankings. He last competed in July and defeated Eric Moon via 1st round KO in 62 seconds. All 14 of Berlanga’s wins have come via TKO/KO and he’s certainly poised for another one this weekend.
Berlanga has a lot of potential and his matchups are well thought out as his team is bringing him along nicely. 2021 could be a big year for Berlanga as he takes on ranked fighters and continues his ascension up the rankings.
Can Berlanga Get a KO Win vs Bellows?
The question heading into the opener of the main card is whether or not Berlanga can TKO/KO Bellows in this fight. Bellows has never lost via knockout and it’s something Edgar is definitely aiming for:
“Bellows has never been stopped, but I intend to be the first man to stop him. He’s a strong fighter, and I hope to get some rounds in. I want to show that I’m a versatile boxer and not just a puncher. One thing I will guarantee is another explosive performance.”
It’s hard to imagine any other outcome. Bellows might have escaped previous losses without a knockout, but that’s not the case here. I expect Berlanga to remain perfect with the 15th KO of his promising career.
Berlanga’s moneyline won’t offer any value, but the prop bet of Edgar winning via TKO/KO could be the best option for this fight.
Can Berlanga Get a KO Win vs Bellows? Berlanga (NA)
Arnold Barboza Jr. vs Alex Saucedo
Arnold Barboza Jr. (NA)
Alex Saucedo (NA)
As with the fight above, this bout also has no available odds as of this writing. However, we have more betting data to examine that should provide us with some clarity on the possible lines for this co-main event.
In his last contest, Barboza Jr. was a massive -5000 betting favorite over Tony Luis. You’d have to go back seven fights to see odds where Arnold wasn’t a huge favorite. In his 2018 fight vs Mike Reed, Barboza was a -155 favorite. For this weekend’s clash, I see his odds being closer to the -200 range than -5000.
Time to make your final predictions for next week’s 🔥 co-feature …
I’m predicting that this will be the first time Alex Saucedo is an underdog in quite some time. The last bout where the odds were close for Saucedo was in 2018 against Maurice Hooker where Saucedo was just a -200 favorite. Since then, his odds have been -1000 to -3000 in his last two fights.
Barboza vs Saucedo Preview
Arnold Barboza Jr.
Alex Saucedo’s lone loss came in 2018 against Maurice Hooker which was a fight for the vacant WBO title. He lost that contest via 7th round TKO. Since then, he changed trainers and has won two in a row. His last fight came in June and he won via unanimous decision over Sonny Fredrickson.
Despite his loss two years ago, Saucedo is still ranked 6th with the WBO. The 26 year old believes his lone defeat is a learning lesson and is determined to get back into the title hunt. A win this weekend could definitely speed up those plans.
Saucedo made the following comments about his opponent this weekend:
“Arnold is a very versatile fighter, so we are preparing for everything. I know it will be hard to steal the show from Lomachenko-Lopez, but I’m coming in to put on a memorable fight for the fans. I feel like people still doubt me from the Maurice Hooker fight, and I can’t wait to show everyone all of my tools.”
Arnold Barboza Jr. is rated 7th with the WBC and the WBO in the junior welterweight division. He’s just one spot below Saucedo in the WBO.
Barboza last fought six weeks ago and defeated Tony Luis via unanimous decision. This weekend’s bout will be his 5th fight in the last 18 months. Barboza is hoping to get the biggest win of his career to date, bounce up into the Top 5 and put the rest of the division on notice:
“It’s time to put the 140-pound division on notice. I respect Saucedo, but he’s in my way as I strive to earn a world title opportunity.”
Which Boxer Cracks the Top 5 With a Win on Saturday?
This fight has a lot of potential to entertain fans by providing plenty of in-ring action and excitement. Saucedo is an action fighter and Barboza will certainly oblige in this aspect.
I see Barboza’s versatility, which Saucedo alluded to in his comments above, as the difference maker in this fight. I don’t believe we will see a stoppage in this 10 round junior welterweight contest.
Instead, I expect the bout to go the full distance where Barboza will pick up the unanimous decision win. 14 of Barboza’s 24 pro bouts have gone the distance. His last bout was a decision win and I see Saucedo being able to last the full 10 rounds in this contest.
Keep an eye out for the prop bet of this fight going the distance. It could offer better value than Barboza’s moneyline.
Which Boxer Cracks the Top 5 With a Win? Barboza Jr. (NA)
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Teofimo Lopez
Vasiliy Lomachenko (-355)
Teofimo Lopez (+285)
Vasiliy Lomachenko enters this contest as the betting favorite with odds ranging from -355 to -500. If you believe he will win then hop on the lower end of his range.
Here’s where the #LomaLopez odds currently stand as Fight Week begins …
Teofimo Lopez enters as the underdog, which is the first time in four years since he’s not been the betting favorite. Lopez is listed at a range of +258 to +350. Go with the higher end of this range if you believe Lopez will win.
Lomachenko vs Lopez Preview
This main event fight is the best boxing bout for the remainder of 2020. It pits two of the top lightweights and boxing’s P4P top fighter in Lomachenko who’s looking to fend off the hungry, young lion in Lopez.
This fight will not only determine who the undisputed lightweight champ will be, but it has a lot of bad blood as the two boxers have exchanged words in the media over the last few months. Even Lopez’s father had a run-in with Lomachenko in public.
Lopez doesn’t only want to win, he wants to destroy Lomachenko. Lopez believes this contest will be a war and is looking to come out as the victor:
“Time to get him out, and when we go in there that night, these [Teofimo’s two fists], I’m going to let you feel me. The only way out of the ring is through that [beep] in front of me. It’s literally killed or be killed, and I’m going to look at him, ‘We’re going to war.”
Lopez last fought in December and defeated Richard Commey via 2nd round TKO to capture the IBF title. It was a surprising outcome, but one that showed Lopez’s power. Six of his last seven fights have ended with Lopez knocking out his opponent.
Vasiliy Lomachenko is the consensus pound for pound best boxer in the sport. The former two time Olympic gold medalist hasn’t lost since March 2014 and has won 13 straight contests. He’s a three division champ who has devoured the competition at each weight class.
Keep in mind, he’s accomplished all of this in just 15 pro fights. It’s a feat that’s unheard of and certainly a historic accomplishment. But, we shouldn’t be too surprised considering Loma went 396-1 as an amateur.
Lomachenko last fought 14 months ago and defeated Luke Campbell via unanimous decision and added the vacant WBC lightweight title to his collection.
Although not the trash talker like Lopez, Lomachenko still fired off a few comments towards his younger opponent this weekend:
“He has done nothing but say my name for the past two years. I am a fighter, and my goal is to win another world title. Good for Teofimo. When we fight in Las Vegas, he will eat my punches and his words. I will be the better man, and four world titles will come home with me to Ukraine.”
How Long Will This Fight Last?
Over 10.5 rounds (-180)
Under 10.5 rounds (+158)
I see this fight going Over 10.5 rounds. I believe the first five or six rounds will be Lopez trying to crack the Loma code. But, it will be difficult. Lomachenko is a very smart fighter who can adapt on the fly and is a great defensive puncher.
Lomachenko will be patient and either catch Lopez making a mistake late in the fight or take this one the full distance.
How Long Will This Fight Last? Over 10.5 rounds (-180)
Will the Fight Go to a Decision?
As mentioned, I see this fight going the distance. As the competition has gotten better (Pedraza, Campbell) Lomachenko had to go the full 12 rounds against them. That’s two of his last three bouts going the distance.
Lopez has gone the distance in three of his 15 pro fights with the last one coming 15 months ago against Masayoshi Nakatani.
I think there’s value with the yes option for this prop bet.
Will the Fight Go to a Decision? Yes (-140)
Who Becomes the Undisputed Lightweight Champ?
Lopez is a very talented fighter at just 23 years old. He has knockout power, size and strength advantages versus Loma. Lomachenko has the advantage in defense, versatility, counter punching, footwork, IQ, and adaptability.
When you compare the strengths and weaknesses between both fighters, things line up in favor of Lomachenko. He’s a veteran fighter who is hard to hit. Lopez is going to have a difficult time landing his power punches cleanly.
Furthermore, Loma’s footwork and versatility will frustrate Lopez throughout the fight. The only question is if Loma can frustrate Lopez enough to force the young fighter into making a big mistake in the latter rounds and scoring a TKO/KO win (+225).
I believe the smart play is on Lomachenko to win via decision (+110). He’s just too smart and talented of a fighter to fall into Lopez’s power punching trap. Loma will pull away on the scorecards and capture the IBF lightweight title via unanimous decision (+170).
After this win, Lomachenko’s place in history is going to be etched in stone. I wouldn’t be surprised to see him try and move up to a 4th weight class.
Undisputed Lightweight Champ? Lomachenko (-355)
Lomachenko wins via decision (+110)
Lomachenko wins via unanimous decision (+170)
Any Other Lomachenko vs Lopez Prop Bets to Consider?
I believe the smart and safe play is on Lomachenko to win via decision, however, I do see a small chance of Loma winning this fight inside the distance (+205).
As mentioned, Loma could force Lopez into making a mistake where he can capitalize on the young fighter’s over aggressiveness and land a TKO/KO (+225) in rounds 10-12 (+745).
Another prop bet to consider is the fight ending in rounds 10-12 (+537) with either boxer capturing the win. I don’t see any chance of this unification bout ending before we hit double digit rounds.
Lomachenko vs Lopez Full Card
Vasiliy Lomachenko vs Teofimo Lopez in a 12 round lightweight unification fight
Arnold Barboza Jr. vs Alex Saucedo in a 10 rounds junior welterweight contest
Edgar Berlanga vs Lanell Bellows in an 8 round super middleweight bout
Josue Vargas vs Kendo Castaneda in a 10 round junior welterweight contest
Clay Collard vs Quincy LaVallais in an 8 round middleweight bout
Jose Enrique Vivas vs John Vincent Moralde in an 8 round featherweight fight
Jan Carlos Rivera vs Quinton Randall in a 6 round welterweight bout
Charles Garner vs Jahi Tucker in a 4 round welterweight contest
As a longtime freelance writer, avid sports fan, former athlete, and experienced sports bettor, Rick Rockwell has risen up the ranks at GamblingSites.org to become the self-professed “King of the Blog” in his first year with the site. …