A matchup up of rising star against seasoned vet is slated for tonight's Wednesday night fights on ESPN2. Mike Oliver vs. Cruz Carvajal matches the undeated rising Jr. Bantamweight prospect Oliver in schedueled 12 round bout in Boston,MA. Sportsbook.com lists .
Oliver, 19-0, 7 KO's, is a fast, flashy southpaw with a wealth of talent and experience having had over 300 amateur fights. Carvajal, 28-13-2, 24 KO's, is a rugged slugger who likes to work the body and deliver a volume of punches while pressing his attack.
The physical advantages in this fight favor Oliver who is 5 years younger, has a 3" reach advantage, stands 1" taller and has twice the speed of Carvajal. Carvajal, 33, has advantages in this fight on the mental side having proven in his career that he is exteremly durable and determined no matter who stands across from him in the ring. Oliver has trouble with fighters who apply suffocating pressure like Carvajal does, so he should be tested.
Carvajal can take a punch and Oliver is slick but isn't a huge banger so I expect this fight to go the full 12 rounds. Oliver, 27, has an excellent trainer in John Scully who has Mike fully prepared for all of the veteran Carvajal's tricks and tendencies. This is a great matchup and I think that the fight is closer than the odds tilted towards Oliver indicates. When the going gets tough in the championshp rounds alot of questions about Mike's heart will be challenged by Carvajal's pressure.
Oliver has super skills and is boxing on home turf in Boston and should be able to outland Carvajal to score a close decision victory.
Mike Oliver -200
Cruz Carvajal: +160
Boxing Prediction: Mike Oliver 2 units