It is slim pickings this week, with just five fights priced up by bookmakers. However, as always, there is still some value to be had.
Once again, I am looking towards a fight involving a prospect for today’s big price pick. Guido Vianello takes on Rafael Rios over eight rounds, on the undercard of the world title eliminator between Joet Gonzalez and Isaac Dogboe.
Personally, I believe the bookies have priced the main event correctly, and I cannot discourage anyone from including Gonzalez to win by decision at 10/11 in their accumulators. Sadly, that is just too short priced for this column. On the other hand, the Vianello fight offers bettors a few more eye-catching prices.
The Italian has won eight of his nine fights as a professional, with all his victories coming by way of knockout. Seven of those wins have come in the first two rounds and I can see this being another short night for ‘The Gladiator.’
Rios gave a decent account of himself when he fought Carlos Negron. Despite getting halted in the second round, the Mexican came to fight and landed plenty of punches on his opponent.
Rios’ willingness to come forward will likely be to his detriment in this one. Vianello is quicker on his feet, has faster hands and throws straight shots, opposed to the Mexican’s wide hooks.
Vianello has a decent amateur pedigree having represented Italy at the 2016 Rio Olympics. I feel this is clever matchmaking by Top Rank as comparisons will be drawn with Negron’s performance against Rios. Bob Arum’s promotional outfit must be confident that Vianello can get the stoppage early, and look good doing so. Top Rank tend to be better than most at progressing their prospects.
The only concern here is that Vianello has been out of the ring for over a year, after sustaining torn ligaments in his left hand. Hopefully, he is fully recovered.
I think Vianello is good enough to get rid of Rios in the opening round, with is priced at 7/2.
As outlined above, I believe there is a real possibility that Vianello is capable of stopping Rios in the opening three minutes, as a result, you will not be surprised to learn that I also think that the Italian to win in rounds 1-2 at 3/2 also represents good value.
The chief support to Gonzalez against Dogboe sees Gabriel Flores Jr face the unbeaten Giovanni Cabrera in bout the bookmakers see as a pick ‘em. I like Flores in this one, despite lacklustre showings in his last two fights. I feel the move up to lightweight will suit Flores. The selection is Flores by decision at 7/5. However, it is worth noting that Graham Houston has leaned towards Cabrera in his Weekend Betting Angle. Graham has a fantastic track record with these picks, which is worth bearing in mind.
This week’s double is priced at 5/1.
In Philadelphia, a battle of hard-hitting super-featherweights tops the bill as Christian Tapia faces Fernando Romero. Tapia has halted 12 opponents in 14 wins, while Romero as stopped all bar one of his rivals in 11 victories. There is not an awful lot of footage available on the Mexican Romero, but from what I have seen, he is a capable pressure fighter, but one that is open to counters. There is considerably video out there on Tapia who has recorded a career-best win over Mason Menard. Given the rivalry between Puerto Rico and Mexico, it is unlikely that Romero will not give up at the first sign of adversity. The selection here is Tapia to win between rounds 5-8 at 2/1.
If you like all three picks, the treble is available at 17/1.