As we approach the midpoint of 2023, the boxing world is abuzz with anticipation. Several marquee fights await fans, some involving established stars and others featuring rising talent. The bouts discussed here promise not only thrilling action but also profound implications for the fighters’ careers and the future of the sport. Here are the top five boxing matches you can’t afford to miss this year.
1. Claressa Shields vs Hanna Gabriels 2 – The Middleweight Rematch
The first match on our radar is the upcoming clash between Claressa Shields and Hanna Gabriels. Scheduled for June 3rd, this bout is a highly-anticipated rematch following their memorable encounter back in 2018. Despite an early setback, Shields bounced back to clinch victory via a unanimous decision, confirming her mettle in the middleweight division. This time around, the stakes are higher as Shields’ undisputed middleweight championship title is on the line.
Shields remains undefeated, which is a proof of her tenacity and skills. Will she reinforce her dominance by defeating Gabriels once more? Or could Gabriels pull off a surprise and put on a show that night?
2. Carlos Adames vs Julian Williams – Battle for the WBC Middleweight Championship
June 24th sees Carlos Adames taking on Julian Williams in Minneapolis. This 12-round contest for the WBC middleweight championship is one of the most talked-about fights in the middleweight division. As per the rules, the weight limit stands at 160 pounds, and Adames is currently favored in the betting odds. The outcome of this fight could significantly shape the future of the middleweight division.
3. Liam Smith vs Chris Eubank Jr 2 – The Explosive Rematch
On July 1st, the boxing world will be set ablaze as Liam Smith and Chris Eubank Jr step into the ring for a highly anticipated rematch. Their previous showdown was a display of Smith’s power and precision, culminating in a stunning knockout that left audiences breathless. Originally planned for June, this riveting rematch has been rescheduled to early July due to a reported injury to Smith. This setback has given Smith a chance to recuperate and devise a fresh strategy, while also providing Eubank Jr with extra time to prepare and recalibrate.
4. Jake Paul vs Nate Diaz – A Crossover Clash
August 5th brings a crossover spectacle as Jake Paul squares off against Nate Diaz. This bout will be Diaz’s debut professional boxing match, and the fighter’s MMA background adds a unique dynamic to this encounter.
This match can easily be regarded as one of the favorite ones in the sports betting world, as the match has drawn the attention of sports enthusiasts from all around the world. In this sense, it is worthy of mentioning that the most popular sportsbooks, like Unibet Sportsbook, give the status of a favorite to Jake Paul, due to his bigger boxing experience, as he has quickly built a reputation in the sport.
However, despite Diaz’s underdog status, his experience in high-pressure fights might provide the edge in this match. So, all the factors promise an unforgettable clash.
5. Amanda Serrano vs Heather Hardy 2 – Featherweight Showdown
Finally, the same date will see Amanda Serrano and Heather Hardy locking horns in a rematch for the undisputed featherweight championship. Hardy, a seasoned fighter, will attempt to avenge her previous defeat and reclaim the WBO featherweight title. This is the chief support bout for the Paul vs Diaz fight and could potentially steal the show.
The year 2023 is shaping up to be one of the most exciting in recent boxing history. These five matches, each with its unique narrative, high stakes, and potential for explosive action, encapsulate the sport’s thrilling unpredictability. Be ready for an adrenaline-pumping summer of boxing!