No Belts Needed: Peterson-Matthysse Preview

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This Saturday in Atlantic City, in Boardwalk Hall, boxing fans will get the pleasure of seeing 2 of the top 5, and some may say the 2 best, junior welterweights in the world when Lamont Peterson will square off against the hard hitting Argentinean, Lucas Matthysse. This bout will be fought at a 141 weight limit and neither Peterson’s IBF belt nor Matthysse’s interim WBC belt will be on the line, but to be honest, in a fight like this, it doesn’t matter.

The belt that everyone really seems to want is Danny Garcia’s green belt, the actual WBC junior welterweight championship belt. No matter if it’s Adrien Broner, Lucas Matthysee, or Lamont Peterson, everyone wants Garcia’s belt. The talk makes for a lot of headlines and the winner of this fight will definitely ask for that fight next, but depending on who wins this, we may or may not ever see it, but we’ll get in to that later.

Lamont Peterson comes into this fight with a 31-1-1 record with 16 KOs. The DC native’s career has been filled with highs inside the ring, yet a roller coaster of accusations outside the ring. Inside the ring, he was arguably the 1st person not named Prescott to put a crack in Amir Khan’s golden (boy) shield. Whether you thought he won or lost, he made Khan work and he frustrated Khan to no end. Some of Peterson’s other high profile fights include a loss to Timothy Bradley, in a fight that wasn’t that competitive, a draw to Victor Ortiz in a fight he would’ve won if he wasn’t stunned and knocked down early, twice in the 3rd round, and an impressive stoppage over Kendall Holt in his last fight.

Outside the ring, he has been accused of things such PEDs as he tested positive for unusual testosterone levels after the Khan fight. Since that time, they have provided reports that prove his innocence, but it’s something that will be brought up by people that want to discredit Peterson’s accomplishments. That will be something he just has to live with and continue to proclaim his innocence with passing any future tests.

Lucas “The Machine” Matthysse will enter the ring with an impressive 33-2 record with 31 KOs. The powerful man, or machine, from Argentina is the Gennady Golovkin of the 140 division, a man that has power, good boxing skills, and seems to have somewhat of a mysterious aura around him. The debate can be made that he has not lost in some fan’s heads as a few people, including me, had him beating Zab Judah by 1 point and Devon Alexander by 1 point. However, even if you do give him the 2 losses from those fights, he has definitely been an improved boxer since then.

Matthysse knocked down Humberto Soto for the 1st time in his career before he could not continue. He beat an undefeated fighter in Ajose Olusegun for the interim WBC junior welterweight belt that he currently holds, and he destroyed Mike Dallas, who was filling in for Hank Lundy just a couple weeks before the fight. I don’t think any can question Matthysse’s power, but the question is how good can he box? He has gotten better in the last the last 2 years, but has he reached that elite level to be the best in the division.

If Peterson wins this fight, I do think he will move on to fight Danny Garcia on September 14th, unless Floyd Mayweather decides to have his next fight on that date. However, if Lucas Matthysee wins, I wouldn’t be so fast to book those September plane tickets. Danny Garcia is advised by Al Haymon, and recently Lucas Matthysee also just signed with the powerful advisor. Haymon rarely has his fighters square off against each other. So not only do we have fights not happening because of the Golden Boy vs. Top Rank promotional war, and not only we have fights not happening because boxers are friends, but now we have fights not happening because they have the same advisors.

As for my prediction on this fight, I have gone back and forth for months about it. I had Lucas for about 2 months and then switched to Lamont about 2-3 weeks ago and as of last night, I have decided to switch back to Lucas. So my pick is Lucas Matthysee by late stoppage in the 10th round. Because of my indecisiveness, you can tell that either man can win this fight. No matter who wins, it should be a great fight to win and the winner can definitely at least make the statement that they are the best 140 lb fighter in the world, as for proving it, that may have to wait till September, enjoy the fight.