Stephen Fulton takes on Daniel Roman

Stephen Fulton vs Daniel Roman is shaping as much as be one other memorable conflict within the 122lbs weight class, writes Nigel Collins

THE present battle for supremacy within the super-bantamweight division has created a sequence of shut, fiercely contested fights. Whereas one of the best are tightly bunched, Stephen Fulton Jnr is the de facto chief of the pack. That would change on Saturday (June 4) when he fights quantity three-ranked Daniel Roman in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

“Cool Boy Steph” is coming off his most demanding but profitable combat of his profession, defending the WBO belt and annexing the WBC title by majority determination over Brandon Figueroa. It was one in all 2021’s most exhilarating fights, incomes honorable mentions on quite a few combat of the yr lists.

“It was an in depth combat,” Fulton advised Morning Kombat’s podcast hosts Luke Thomas and Brian Campbell. “It was loopy. I didn’t assume it was going to be [a candidate] for combat of the yr.

Figueroa, then again, known as the combat “the most important theft of the yr.”

“I believe he reacted the best way he did as a result of he did higher than he thought he would,” stated Fulton, a budding grasp of the unintentional backhand praise. He’s on the stage of his profession when his unbridled confidence has but to be dented, which makes him unpredictable and harmful.
We glance to the Fulton-Figueroa combat for perception and marvel precisely the place is Roman’s profession arc is headed now he’s misplaced the IBF and WBA belts to depraved punching Uzbekistani Murodjon Akhmadaliev by 12-round cut up determination on January 30, 2021. The 33-year-old Angelino has since stayed sharp, scoring unanimous selections over Mexico’s Ricardo Espinoza Franco and Dominican Juan Carlos Payano. If Roman has yet another nice combat in him, now could be the time.

“I’m greater than excited to wins these belts from Fulton and take them again house,” stated Roman. “After that, I nonetheless have some unfinished enterprise with Akhmadaliev.”

Regardless of his eagerness to avenge the loss, Roman insists he isn’t trying previous Fulton, a well-known chorus each time a boxer mentions a future goal previous to the match at hand. Nonetheless, his analysis of Fulton is nicely thought of. He is aware of what he’s up in opposition to.

“[Fulton] confirmed he may combat contained in the pocket in opposition to Figueroa,” stated Roman. “He’s sensible and may make changes however I can perform a little little bit of the whole lot. I can stand and combat and I can field. I’m extra a technical fighter. I believe it is going to be like a recreation of chess.”

That’s extremely unlikely. That is Philly versus L.A., a traditional East Coast, West Coast showdown, even whether it is being held in Minnesota. Moreover, Roman is a stress fighter who walks ahead behind a excessive guard trying to interact. Like Figueroa his forte is physique punching.

In April 2019, Roman dropped then-unbeaten Irishman TJ Doheny twice, as soon as with a left to the pinnacle within the seconds spherical and once more within the within the eleventh with a left to the physique. It was sufficient to win by majority determination. It was additionally Roman’s guts and physique punches that saved the Akhmadaliev combat moderately shut.

Roman’s 29-3-1 document is misleading. He solely has 10 wins inside the gap however it might be a mistake to underestimate the harm he inflicts as soon as he will get rolling. If he upsets Fulton, Danny’s physique punches would be the distinction.

Fulton, 20-0 (8), is 5 years youthful than Roman, faster, more energizing and has a slight benefit in peak and attain. He punches together, unleashing stinging blows with remarkably accuracy. If he has a foul behavior it’s staying in a defensive shell too lengthy along with his again to the ropes, fending off blows as an alternative of letting his palms go.

When requested about Figueroa’s physique assault that always strayed into foul territory, Fulton smiled and stated, “It was a wise tactic he was utilizing. What’s clear about skilled preventing? No person needs to lose. Persons are going to do what they must do to win. The place I come from, initially, we preventing [rather than boxing]. Going into the fourth spherical, I felt if I saved shifting I wouldn’t have the vitality to go ahead, so I assumed, okay, now we’re preventing.”

You possibly can take a Philly fighter out of Philadelphia however you’ll be able to’t Philly out of a fighter, even when the combat is in Michigan. No matter strategy Roman and Fulton tackle Saturday, it’ll finally come all the way down to flat-out preventing, the aspect that has made so many current super- bantamweight fights so gratifying to look at.

A person of Roman character and expertise shouldn’t be prematurely counted out however Fulton’s youthful model ought to carry him to decisive determination. Within the occasion the burden of Roman’s 33 earlier bouts and the punishment Akhmadaliev inflicted have taken a higher toll than anticipated, I may envision the referee or Danny’s nook stopping it.

On the undercard, No. 3 super-middleweight David Morrell of Cuba, 6-0 (5), takes on the absolutely overmatched Kalvin Henderson, 15-1-1 (11) in a bout for the lightly-regarded WBA secondary bauble.

The Verdict Fulton is the favorite right here for good motive.

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