Expert Sports Picks: Saturday night on HBO Boxing the big boys will rumble when heavyweight Luis Ortiz and Bryant Jennings clash for the interim W.B.A. title. Bryant Jennings vs Luis Ortiz Odds have Ortiz as a -180 favorite with 80% of boxing predictions on Jennings +150. The Philadelphia pug “By-By” Jennings, 19-1, 10 KO’s, has been inactive for eight months after losing a decision to former heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko. The hulking Cuban “King Kong” Ortiz, 23-0, 20 KO’s, destroyed 6’9″ Argentine Matias Ariel Vidondo on the Gennady Golovkin vs David Lemieux undercard. Can Bryant Jennings upset the Boxing Odds as so many experts are predicting? ESPN2 News panel gives their boxing predictions for the W.B.A. title eliminator from Verona, New York. Bryant Jennings vs Luis Ortiz Odds have Ortiz -180 moneyline (Bet $180 to win $100) at BOVADA.LV
Bryant Jennings – Boxer: The physically shredded 6’2″ Jennings is extremely long-limbed with an 84″ reach at 225 Lbs. “By-By” is an athletic Boxer/Puncher that is well versed fighting on the inside or outside. Jennings had less than 20 amateur fights but has displayed a crisp jab, good agility, above-average handspeed and a solid chin. Jennings is still a work in progress that doesn’t always display natural boxing instinct. Jennings does little counterpunching defensively and has ordinary accuracy offensively. Jennings has a sneaky left-hook but only modest punching power Jennings is a bit of a headhunter that neglects the body. Jennings was only able to win 3-4 rounds in his title fight with aging former champion Wladimir Klitschko. Bryant Jennings vs Luis Ortiz Odds have Jennings +150 (Bet $100 to win $150 at BOVADA SPORTSBOOK
Luis Ortiz – Boxer: The 6’4″ Cuban is a menacing figure at 235-240 Lbs. with an aircraft carrier sized back and massive 84″ reach. “King Kong” is a southpaw bomber with bonecrushing power in both hands and a deep amateur background with 350+ fights. Ortiz is a ring general that knows how to use the ring and blend his offense with defense. Despite his immense size Ortiz is light on his feet with dexterity. Ortiz has a slippery defense, displaying excellent anticipation and ring vision. Ortiz is relatively untested and has never faced an opponent of Jennings caliber in the professional ranks. At 36-year old Ortiz is past his prime and has been known to train lackadaisically. Ortiz’s chin is a question mark until he gets tagged by a big puncher. Ortiz’s stamina is a question mark having never been past 8 rounds.
ESPN2 News Bottom Line: Jennings is a game contender but Ortiz is a huge puncher with deceptive speed. “By-By” has shown good punch resistance but the Cuban southpaw’s power will be a telling factor. Expect a “King Kong” bomb around the 7th round to discombobulate the tough Philly fighter.
Expert Boxing Picks: Ortiz KO 7
Luis Ortiz vs Bryant Jennings Tale-Of-The-Tape
Height/Reach: Ortiz +2
Strength/Size: Ortiz +1
Hand Speed/Accuracy: 8/7
Boxing Ability: 7/6
Confidence/Focus: Ortiz +1
Judges Scoring: Jennings +1
ESPN2 News Boxing Odds: Ortiz -500