Various Members of Boxing Press Weigh In on Karmazin-Spinks!


Various Members of Boxing Press Weigh In on Karmazin-Spinks!

IBF 154-pound champion Roman Karmazin defends against former undisputed welterweight champion Cory Spinks in yet another terrific main event Saturday on  SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast). So who is going to triumph? The experts expect it to be very close. Of the 29 boxing media sorts who participated in a SHOWTIME Prediction Poll, 15 picked Karmazin, 13 liked Spinks, and one predicted a draw.


 Here’s how they see the evenly matched Karmazin-Spinks world title fight:


 Darin Darst, CBS SportsLine, (Karmazin): “The biggest thing going against Cory Spinks is moving up in weight class and not fighting in more than a year – a fight he lost to Zab Judah. Karmazin is coming off a huge victory over Kassim Ouma, a fighter many believed was one of the best up-and-coming boxers. Spinks has beaten more “name” fighters on his resume, but the layoff is going to hurt him. Karmazin wins by unanimous decision.’’


 Tim Smith, NY Daily News, (Spinks): “I like Spinks primarily because of his speed and movement. I think he could give Karmazin trouble in that area. Karmazin is a tough guy and a hard hitter, but Spinks takes a good shot (see Mayorga). I look for Spinks to box better than Karmazin and I don't think he'll be hurt by being in his hometown. Spinks by decision.’’


 Steve Kim,, (Karmazin): “I like Spinks -- his ring intros are much more entertaining. No, but seriously, despite the hometown advantage, I like Karmazin. Not only is he bigger, but he's shown good skills and past success with left-handers. And Spinks has shown to be far from unbeatable in St Louis.’’


Franklin McNeil, The Star-Ledger (Newark, N.J.), (Karmazin): Karmazin hasn't fought since winning the title in July 2005. That would be a problem if he was fighting anyone other than Spinks, who's coming off a 16-month-old loss and moving up in weight. Due to the long layoff, it'll take Karmazin about four rounds to get going and when he does Spinks will be in trouble. Karmazin stops Spinks in 10.


Bernard Fernandez, Philadelphia Daily News, (Spinks): Karmazin apparently had no trouble handling one southpaw, Kassim Ouma, in winning the title. Can he handle another, Spinks, as handily? I don't think that will be the case. Spinks is slick, and he should have a supportive hometown crowd behind him. Leon's little boy on points.’’


Ant Evans,, (Draw): “If Spinks had fought in a year and wasn't coming off such a troubled lay-off, I'd tip a hometown win. But it is hard to go against a pro's pro like Karmazin when the other guy is rusty. I'll be very close, perhaps a draw.’’


Greg Leon,, (Spinks): “Cory will surprise a lot of people in this and win a unanimous decision. I expect the southpaw boxer to rebound effectively against perhaps the best junior middleweight champion in the world in his 154 pound debut. Although he’ll never be mistaken for a puncher, Cory will be stronger at 154. Spinks’ superior speed and defense will prove to be the difference, as his performance outdoes his ring walk in this installment of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING.’’


Bud Barth, Worcester (Mass.) Telegram & Gazette, (Karmazin): “Karmazin is too strong for Spinks, who was exposed in the loss to Zab Judah. Spinks is out of his element at 154 pounds, and the home crowd won't help unless they climb into the ring with him. Karmazin by TKO in Round 9.’’


Kenneth Miller, Los Angeles Sentinel, (Spinks): “I don't know much about Karmazin and Spinks has been away for more than a year. However if Spinks can recapture any of his ring savvy, and add the power he suggest that he has, then I like Spinks by decision.’’


Marc Lichtenfeld, Through the Ropes radio show, (Spinks): “Karmazin is a very solid fighter but Spinks will frustrate him all night, staying out of harm's way.  Spinks will dance his way to a decision and Karmazin's title.’’


Bob Mladinich,, (Karmazin): “The defending champion is a tough egg and Spinks, who is moving up in weight, can't break an egg. Karmazin by 12-round decision.’’


Clive Bernath,, (Karmazin): “Roman Karmazin is the natural junior-middleweight and a better boxer than Spinks. Karmazin is also in the best form of his career. Karmazin by unanimous decision.”


Scoop Malinowski,, (Karmazin): “Spinks is one of the most beautifully talented boxers in the sport today. He's artistry in motion. Karmazin is big and strong, a very dangerous sharp puncher. Fantastic matchup. Very hard to call this one, but gut feeling is that the power of Karmazin eventually breaks down Spinks.’’


Paul Upham,, (Spinks): “Cory Spinks will be much better suited physically at 154. He was not at his best against Zab Judah and his skills are far superior to Karmazin. Spinks will win a decision.’’


Curtis McCormick,, (Spinks): “Neither one of these guys has fought for ages but Spinks certainly has the southpaw style and quickness to give Karmazin fits. If Spinks runs out of gas as he did in the second Judah fight, he won't have the pop to keep the champion off and that could prove disastrous. But, Spinks has a good bit of experience against the European stand-up style of Karmazin and will take enough of the rounds to win a unanimous decision.’’


Mike Sloan,, (Spinks): “It'll be a close fight for sure, but I see Spinks out-pointing him and winning a close, possibly disputed decision. Spinks is a master boxer and Karmazin hasn't really fought anybody as elusive as Spinks.’’


Dennis Bernstein, SCORE/Media Ventures, (Karmazin): “If you haven't been paying close attention, the Russians are taking over boxing. Karmazin came out of nowhere to beat Kassim Ouma in a dominating performance last July. Spinks, on the other hand, disappeared after losing at home to  Judah. Roman's height and reach prove too much for the home standing Spinks. Karmazin TKO 11.


Ben Cohen,, (Spinks): “This should be an intriguing fight with two contrasting styles. Karmazin is a powerful, orthodox fighter, while Spinks is a slick southpaw counter-puncher. Spinks is coming off a bad loss, while Karmazin is coming off a great win. It is anyone’s guess as to how much this will affect Spinks, but given his usual mental toughness, I think he should be okay. I also see Karmazin having big problems contending with Spinks’ movement. The Russian has a stiff, upright stance and can be made to miss. We will see whether Spinks has the pop at 154 to hurt him, but he should be able to take a close decision by moving and countering.’’


Anthony Cocks,, (Karmazin): “Rugged Russian Roman Karmazin proved his class last year with his ambush of highly regarded Ugandan Kassim Ouma to annex the IBF junior middleweight title. Look for Karmazin to continue his run of good form against Spinks, outmuscling and outhustling the naturally smaller St Louis southpaw, who will need to draw on all of his slickster skills to avoid being knocked out.’’


Wayne McCullough, RING magazine, (Spinks): “This is a good match up.  Roman Karmazin is the bigger guy and has fought at the higher weight but I think Cory Spinks is too slick and hard to hit. Spinks will box his way to a 12 round decision.”


John Gregg,, (Spinks): “This is a classic confrontation between a puncher and a grinder versus a boxer and a mover.  I look for the champion Karmazin to apply pressure and
attempt to cut off the ring; however, he will struggle against the southpaw challenger Spinks' right jab and ability to slip shots.  Spinks by a narrow split decision based on speed, movement and the hometown crowd.’’


Zachary Levin,, (Karmazin): “Roman Karmazin will stop Spinks by the 10th round. Roman's a big light middle who throws a lot of hard, accurate punches in combinations. Spinks couldn't break an egg at 147! Expect a rough outing for the Jinx. Karmazin-Ouma II begs to happen next.’’


Geno McGahee,, (Spinks): “After seeing Roman Karmazin in action against Keith Holmes and Kassim Ouma, I am picking Cory Spinks. Although impressive in victory, I see Karmazin as a step too slow to keep up with the quick and accurate Spinks.  It won't be a shut out, but it will be clear when that final bell rings that the "Next Generation" has done enough to win.”


George Elsasser,, (Karmazin): “Choosing between a sight unseen Eastern Bloc 33-year-old Karmazin versus an inactive and totally confused entity like Spinks who when last seen getting starched by a Zabba-Dabba Judah is a fight version of the impossible dream. Wild shot in the dark is Karmazin -- if the one that outworked Kassim Ouma shows. A natural light-middle gets the nod over a soft punching Spinks who is moving up in weight on his initial return to action. Karmazin by decision.’’


Jack Obermayer, Boxing Digest, (Karmazin): “Karmazin by close decision. Spinks and his southpaw boxing will make it difficult for the champ, but I believe that Roman will slowly break him down, going strongly to the body. Officials will see the effective aggression of Karmazin in a positive light.’’


Justin Stone, (Spinks): Spinks is one of the most talented boxers in his division.  His skill, alongside his great hunger, will net him a 12-round decision win.’’


William Trillo,, (Karmazin): “Karmazin will walk into Cory Spinks’ home and then steal the show. The last time Roman won by KO was 2003 and you have to go all the way back to 2001 to find a KO by Cory. Pour a tall one and get ready for a good, hard-fought 12-round battle for the IBF light middle belt.’'


Jim Monteverde,, (Karmazin): “Tall natural junior middleweight beats a fast welterweight. Karmazin wins a split decision.’’


Howie Reed, THE SQUARE RING (Pattaya Mail), (Karmazin): “Karmazin wins easily because of his power. Spinks hasn't been the fighter that won the title since he and trainer Kenny Adams parted company. Spinks has no power and he's been out of the ring since his loss to Zab Judah in February of last year.’’