The Neutral Corner, Ep. 249 Recap (Best of 2020, Previews of Ioka-Tanaka, Garcia-Campbell)
On episode 249 of The Neutral Corner boxing podcast, host Michael Montero gave his choices for the best and worst of boxing in 2020. This year brought unprecedented challenges and frustrations for fight fans, but plenty of memorable moments as well. Montero’s favorites are noted below.
Upset: Jeison Rosario TKO5 Julian Williams (January 18, Philadelphia, USA, PBC, Fox)
Robbery: Rolando Romero UD12 Jackson Marinez (August 15, Connecticut, USA, PBC, Showtime)
Knockout: Alexander Povetkin TKO5 Dillian Whyte (August 22, Brentwood, UK, Matchroom, DAZN)
Trainer: Robert Garcia (Robert Garcia Boxing Academy)
Promoter: Top Rank
Network: ESPN / ESPN+
Prospect: Charles Conwell (14-0, 11 KOs, 3-0 in 2020, last two opponents had combined record of 26-0)
Sorest Loser: Deontay Wilder
Milk Carton: Dmitry Bivol
Fight: Jose Zepeda KO5 Ivan Baranchyk (October 3, Las Vegas, USA, Top Rank, ESPN+)
Fighter: Teofimo Lopez (16-0, 12 KOs, undisputed lightweight champion)
After returning from a one week hiatus, Montero briefly reviewed fight cards from two weeks ago. Tim Tszyu, Charles Conwell, Gilberto Ramirez, Gennady Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez all scored dominant wins. In one of the worst robberies of the year, Reymart Gaballo received an early Christmas present with a split decision over Emmanuel Rodriguez. Judges John McKaie and Don Trella absolutely robbed the Puerto Rican, scoring the bout for Gaballo, the house fighter.
Last Saturday, December 26, PBC had a card on FS1. Cuban super middleweight prospect David Morrell scored a KO3 win to improve to 4-0 with 3 knockouts. While featherweight prospect Angel Barrientes (3-1, 2 KOs) suffered his first defeat as a pro, losing by knockout in the fourth round against Travon Lawson (4-0, 3 KOs) of Alabama.
Thursday, December 31:
Ota-City General Gymnasium, Tokyo, Japan
Kazuto Ioka vs. Kosei Tanaka, 115lb title fight
Saturday, January 2:
American Airlines Center, Dallas, Texas (DAZN)
Ryan Garcia vs. Luke Campbell, vacant interim 135 title
Rene Alvarado vs. Roger Gutierrez, 130b title fight
Felix Alvarado vs. DeeJay Kriel, 108lb title fight
@5:00 News and Notes
@16:30 Christmas present for TNC fans!
@20:00 Best of Boxing in 2020
@53:30 Fight Review
@1:03:40 Fight Preview (Ioka vs Tanaka, Garcia vs Campbell)
Michael Montero can be found on social media via @MonteroOnBoxing. His podcast “The Neutral Corner” can be seen every Monday on TheRingDigital YouTube channel, and heard on audio podcast platforms around the world.