Robert Easter Jr. vs Javier Fortuna Preview Jan. 20th
Uneaten IBF Lightweight Champion Robert Easter Jr. of Toledo, Ohio will be defending his title against Javier Fortuna of the Dominican Republic this Saturday, January 20th.. The 12-round bout from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York can be seen live in the USA on Showtime while fans in the UK and Ireland can catch it on BoxNation. Canadians fans can see it on tape delay the next day at 12:30 ET on TSN2. Easter last fought against Denis Shafikov on June 30 and won by unanimous decision. Easter won the vacant IBF crown in a close and exciting split decision over Richard Commey in September, 2016 and this is his third defence. Fortuna last fought in September when he beat Nicolas Polanco by 10-round unanimous decision.
Easter Jr. vs Fortuna Betting Odds
- Javier Fortuna +375
- Robert Easter Jr. -475
The 26-year-old Easter was an alternate of the 2012 American Olympic Team and will enter the ring with a perfect record of 20-0 along with 14 Kos. He’s a tall lightweight at 5-feet-11-inches tall with a reach of 76 inches. He’s boxed 94 rounds since turning pro back in 2012. Easter has very good power in his fists with a current knockout ratio of 70 per cent. He likes to stay active as this will be his ninth contest since 2015. Easter has good hand speed and doesn’t mind going toe-to-toe when needed.
Along with wins over Shafikov and Commey, Easter’s also beaten the likes of Argenis Mendez, Juan Roman Solis, Miguel Mendoza, Daniel Attah, Roberto Acevedo, Hardy Paredes and Carlos Cardenas. He’s a good combination puncher and a fast starter as all 14 of his Kos have come before the sixth round. He’s also stopped five of his last eight opponents. If Easter has a weakness it’s his defence since he’s not the hardest guy to hit. He’ll need to make sure he doesn’t leave himself open for one of the Fortuna’s powerful counter shots.
The 28-year-old Fortuna is a southpaw and former WBA Super Featherweight Champion and interim WBA Featherweight champ. His lone loss came via an 11th-round stoppage at the hands of Jason Sosa in June of 2016 to lose his super featherweight belt. His draw was a 10-round split-decision affair with Luis Franco back in August of 2013. Fortuna, who now fights out the U.S., will enter the ring with a record of 33-1-1 with 23 Kos. Fortuna turned pro back in 2009 and has boxed 167 rounds since then.
Fortuna captured the WBA interim featherweight title in 2012 via a unanimous decision over Patrick Hyland and won the vacant WBA world title in May of 2015 by beating Bryan Vasquez via unanimous decision. He stands 5-feet-5-inches tall with a wingspan of 68.5 meaning he’s giving up six inches in height and 7.5 inches in reach. He also has pretty good power with a current knockout ratio of 64 per cent. However, his chin’s questionable as he’s been dropped a few times.
The challenger possesses very fast hands and his fine head movement makes him a rather difficult opponent to hit though. If there’s a knock against Fortuna it could be that he isn’t the most mobile of boxers as his footwork isn’t always the best. He’s faced some good opponents over the years and has also beaten the likes of Cristobal Cruz, Miguel Roman and Abner Cotto, so he’s not lacking in experience against strong opposition.
This is a good matchup as they both have experience in tough fights, but Easter has the big edge in height and reach. If he can use it to his advantage and keep Fortuna at bay and on the back foot then he should be more successful. This should be a close, exciting bout, but I think Easter will keep his title and don’t be surprised if there are a couple of knockdowns along the way.
Easter’s size, speed and power should be the difference.
Play: Easter Jr. -475 @ BetOnline.ag
Check out my recent boxing betting picks to see my current form