Ishe Smith Vs Carlos Molina – 14th September 2014

MGM Grand, Las Vegas, USA 

IBF Light Middleweight Title 
Earlier this year Ishe Smith became the first Las Vegas native to win a world title with a majority decision win over dangerous puncher Cornelius Bundrage, it was an emotional moment for Smith who had been on a long journey. He had a solid amateur background and was a highly regarded prospect, however finally lost his first professional bout in 2004 during the NBC’s contender series, dropping a split decision to eventual winner Sergio Mora.

Smith while he has had a bumpy road at times in his career, dropping fights that perhaps should have been winnable for him, when his mind is on the job he is a very decent boxer, he is very sturdy with a decent chin and can counter opponents well and also has a fair bit of pop in the right hook.

Molina has a habit of getting on the wrong end of debatable decisions, nearly all his losses have been debatable in some form or another and most could have been wins. It could be that Molina never reads the script and has been somewhat underrated for a large portion of his career he held Julio Chavez Jr to a controversial draw back in 2005 that should have been a win, then again in the rematch despite losing a Majority decision officially he beat Julio Chavez Jr.

He then had a very narrow loss to Mike Alvarado dropping a majority decision, however we now know Mike Alvarado can fight like hell, and box for that matter. He then came in at short notice as a 9/1 underdog to fight Erislandy Lara in 2011 and held Lara to a draw in what was nearly the upset of the year.

Then there was the James Kirkland fight, Kirkland was a huge prospect that had just outed the incredibly tough and dangerous Alfredo Angulo inside 6 rounds in his previous bout, people were talking about Kirkland. Molina came in and handed a boxing lesson to Kirkland for the best part of 10 rounds and was dropped in the 10th, a member of his corner mis judged the bell entered the ring and Molina got disqualified, justice and boxing don’t always meet very often do they.

Anyway my point is that Molina has already proved he can mix it up there with the very best, he is a very smart fighter who reads his opponent well, he has a loose style and good technical boxing ability, perhaps his only sub side is he does not carry enough power, if he did he would probably already hold a world title.

This is a tough one to bet because i like Molina in this fight, but there are factors to consider that i do not like so much, the fact Molina can only be had at 4/11 outright or 4/7 for a decision, the fact that Smith will be the home town fighter the first Las Vegas native world champion, fighting in Las Vegas, then there also the factor that Smith is fighting under Mayweather’s promotional team, it just seems like history could repeat itself for Molina again and if the fight is close you can see Smith getting the nod.

And while i feel Smith is up against it here against a better guy i don’t think he will be completely dominated either and in front of a home crowd he is bound to give it 100%. Smith is 3/1 and when you weigh up all the factors as i have discussed i think there may be some value to be had in that price, also i wouldn’t dismiss a something like a fishy draw occurring either so make sure you cover it. However i will certainly be keeping stakes smallish on this one.

ATR’s Bet – £20 on Smith 3/1 Betfred, £2 on the draw 28/1 Betfred

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