Glowacki vs Usyk – TOO MANY KILOMETERS FROM GDANSK – September’s calendar is a cornucopia of conking consequences, with some of boxing’s very best practitioners gracing the strands in major ports of call.
Entertainment spectacles at locales like Cowboys Stadium or O2 Arena make fools, yet again, of those who belched clichés about boxing as dead, which I heard in the 90s like others heard in the 60s.
But this is not a matter of big drama, cinnamon snacks or Choco treats, be they piquito or grande. From a purely pugilistic perspective, if I could choose any card to attend this month, I’d be headed for Poland, with a big pierogi grin across my face.
Away from far bigger productions like GGG-Brook or Canelo- Smith; along the Baltic shores there awaits a relatively unheralded contest with serious Fight of the Year potential.
Krzystof Glowacki’s WBO cruiserweight title defense against fellow undefeated lefty Oleksander Usyk is the most intriguing matchup of this year. Yeah, yeah, Andre Ward is set to challenge Sergey Kovalev. Based on recent form, there’s a pretty fair likelihood that battle doesn’t reach near it’s full potential and fizzles anti-climactically, something like Crawford – Postol.
In the bigger scheme of things, one-trick pony shows like the latest Golovkin or Alvarez adventure, through nobody’s fault, still would have only been truly huge if there was a titanic, long shot upset.
On the other gloved hand, based on recent form, Glowacki – Usyk is a real pick- ‘em fight. It shapes up like a version of unpredictable epics ranging from Morales – Pacquiao to Foreman – Lyle.
I’ve never seen the 30 year old Glowacki fight live, but if the 26-0 (16 KO) bomber can stop Marco Huck on a night where Huck displayed typical attacks, I figure the champion, from a small town called Walcz, is plenty tough.
Glowacki earned his king of the cruiserweight hill status, belt or no belt, by stopping Huck in August of 2015. His next bout cemented that claim when Glowacki topped formidable Steve Cunningham last April, no simple Spring challenge.
Prior to that, for the most part of an eight year professional campaign, Glowacki faced the unusual suspects of EU encounters, exclusively in Poland. He took a big step up against recognized bruiser Nuri Seferi in January 2015. A widespread unanimous decision set up a visit to Prudential Center in Newark for the appointment with Huck, and perhaps from the looks of things, the dawn of Glowacki’s elite boxer status.
The 29 year old Usyk, 9-0 (9), I have observed in person, briefly.
Usyk’s 3rd round blast out of Ben Nsafoah on the Klitschko – Leapai undercard reminded me of the night GGG blasted out Lajuan Simon in two minutes, almost knocking Simon into my ringside Alt beer. It made an impression.
Joseph Parker also appeared on that Klitschko undercard. Picking solely from that night’s performances, I’d go with Usyk to beat Parker at that point in their careers.
Usyk’s last bout was officially a heavyweight contest, as he scored a 7th round TKO against relatively light punching Pedro Rodriguez, 22-1, 2 KOs going in.
Usyk, listed at 6’3” with a 78-inch reach, has weighed in just a pinch over 200 pounds four times now, including his debut. Glowacki, 6’0”, 75-inch reach, has notched six heavyweight appearances.
Glowacki and Usyk probably understood that in this era of 6’5 heavyweights, their best bet is to stay on a diet. If so, it was a good call, and that leads us to Saturday night in the Baltics.
I doubt there will even be one-tenth the fans in Gdansk as there will be in Texas, but this EU fight is probably in the perfect locale. If you’ve been lucky enough to experience Polish culture, you’ll tip some Bison Grass and know what I mean. Klitschko – Adamak in Wroclaw remains one of the very best fight scenes I’ve witnessed. Attendance numbers aside, there will be as much pumped-up passion in Poland as any fight card on the planet.
My prediction is as much a guess as a forecast.
If they met above the 200 pound weight limit I might pick the other way, but based on Usyk being a better (elongated) body-type fit at the contracted weight, I’m going with the challenger.
This fight seems so close that an inch in established reach probably means a mile. Glowacki often fights from an attacking crouch, behind straight -armed probes, before following up with serious leather. He sets his right leg like a pitcher releasing a fastball.
Advantage wise, Glowacki gets the angles, Usyk gets the leverage. If Glowacki keeps the fight inside, the vodka may flow until daybreak. If Usyk lands his highlight reel rights from shoulder level before Glowacki can complete those crucial, compacting strides, there will be a new champion. Take your pick.
Glowacki – Usyk will not go to a decision. Somebody very lumped- up is going to get rescued by the ref, around the end of the 8th frame. My imaginary, wouldn’t bet on it coin flip says Usyk wins.
Glowacki vs Usyk /