Monday, October 02, 2023  |


Abel Sanchez: ‘Billy Joe Saunders vs. David Lemieux is a 50/50 fight’

Photo credit: Stacey Verbeek
Fighters Network

Fair to say it seems like fans are sizing up the Saturday clash, in Canada, between bomber David Lemieux and crafty tradesman Billy Joe Saunders as pretty much a coin-flip fight.

I sense that respect for Saunders has grown over the last year, not so much for the reigning WBO middleweight titlist’s behavior, but for the fact that, put simply, he wins. He isn’t engaging in thrillers but he stays focused and defensively adept, when at his best, and many see his pugilism brand being a notch better caliber than Lemieux. Then there are people who think Lemieux is due for a rebound after a middling showing in his most recent tango. Before that win, a 10-round unanimous decision against respectable but not super-starry Marcos Reyes, he blew buzz from coast to coast with a one-hitter quitter against Curtis Stevens. He could be due for a rebound special in a tango that platforms on HBO.

I put it to an expert in middleweights, someone who has seen Lemieux up close for a lengthy spell, in October of 2015, Abel Sanchez. His top client unified middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin stopped the Golden Boy Promotions boxer in round eight.

So Abel, how might a bout between brain pan rattler Lemieux vs. Saunders, a cocky Brit traveler, play out?

“I think it’s a 50/50 fight, saying that, I believe Saunders needs to fight the perfect fight to win, a perfect 12-round fight,” the California-based tutor told me. “Lemieux has the type of power and body strength that is a game-changer but can be out-boxed. I can see either guy winning, Saunders by decision and Lemieux KO, but we could get a couple knockdowns that earns (Lemieux) a decision.”

And what is your take, reader?




Follow Michael Woods on Twitter @Woodsy1069.




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