Jorge Linares vs Nihito Arakawa preview March 8
Former two-time world champion Jorge Linares of Venezuela will be taking on Nihito Arakawa at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday, March 8 on the undercard of the Canelo Alvarez vs Alfredo Angulo bout. This 10-round lightweight bout and three other fights on the card will be shown on pay-per-view by Showtime in the U.S. and can also be caught via pay-per-view in Canada.
Linares will enter the ring with a record of 35-3 with 23 Kos while Arakawa of Tokyo, Japan has a mark of 24-3-1 along with 16 Kos. This bout has been elevated to the pay-per-view card as the Omar Figueroa vs Ricardo Alvarez bout was canceled due to an injury to Figueroa’s left hand. The 32-year-old Arakawa took on Figueroa last year in one of the best bouts of the decade. He battled toe-to-toe with the WBC champion and dropped a unanimous decision, but amazed the fans with his heart and ability to take a punch.
Arakawa just kept fighting back in that bout in San Antonio, Texas last July and hurt Figueroa on several occasions, but just didn’t have enough in the tank to stop him. Anybody who saw that bout will have a great deal of respect for the southpaw Arakawa and that includes Linares. Arakawa said last year’s bout took a lot out of him, but he’s refreshed and has trained hard for his meeting with Linares. He actually wanted to get in the ring again shortly after the brutal bout, but his team told him he had to rest and recharge his batteries.
Arakawa is a boxer who simply won’t quit. He has good power and an excellent chin, but isn’t known as a one-punch knockout artist. He simply overwhelms his opponents with the volume of punches he manages to throw. If he can manage another performance like the one he had against Figueroa then the 28-year-old Linares is going to be in for a long, hard night. Linares is a former featherweight and junior lightweight world champion and prefers to stick and move than going toe-to-toe tho9ugh.
This means Arakawa won’t find his opponent standing right in front of him the way he did last summer. Linares has won four consecutive bouts after losing two in a row by stoppage. He was stopped by Antonio DeMarco in the 11th round in 2011 and Sergio Thompson managed to stop him in two when he was badly cut in 2012. Linares likes to stay on his toes and sets up his power punches from a distance.
Arakawa knows Linares is fast and has good boxing skills, but it’s also apparent to him that he can be stopped if he’s put under relentless pressure. The Japanese boxer needs to shorten the distance and get on the inside to be effective. If he can stand up to Linares best punches then he has a good chance in this encounter. Basically, he needs to make Linares fight by initiating the action and utilizing his non-stop punching style.
Arakawa fought the fight of his life last July, but he said it wasn’t the toughest of his career. He gave it everything he had against Figueroa, but just came up short. It’s hard to tell how much that slugfest took out of him at the age of 32. If he still has a lot left in the tank and can replicate that performance then he should be able to do enough to take this bout by a decision or a late stoppage. Linares will try to box his way to victory as he won’t want to get into a brawl, but Arakawa’s volume punching should swing the tide here.
Sportsbook 5dimes.eu has the latest odds on all of the big fights with an Arakawa win being listed at +500 and a Linares victory at -800. Visit 5Dimes.eu to see up to date odds and to bet on this fight. You should also check out our recent boxing betting predictions to see how we’ve done of late capping the bouts.