And just like that, 2023 has come to an end with a bang with the Riyadh Seasons Heavyweight ‘Day of Reckoning’, and we are straight back into 2024 with boxing aplenty in January. It’s a quick turnaround. Boxing is notoriously quiet in the month of January (especially in the UK), with fights few and far between. This has very much been the case until last January, where we were treated to a night of Middleweight action in the form of Chris Eubank Jr. Vs Liam Smith in 2023. This is of course threw up a shock victory for Liam Smith, which Chris Eubank Jr. would go on to avenge back in September 2023.
January 2024 really has got off to a flyer, with Artur Beterbiev Vs Callum Smith kicking January off on Saturday 13th, where we saw the levels in class from Artur Beterbiev who dispatched the brave Callum Smith in the 7th Round by TKO in Quebec. This victory for Artur Beterbiev leads nicely into 2024, with an undisputed match-up touted for June 2024 against the WBA Light-Heavyweight World Champion, Dmitry Bivol. Artur Beterbiev Vs Dmitry Bivol is a fight I have been crying out for (but this is another story for another day). And Saturday 20th, we witnessed a fight night from the UK through Boxxer & Sky Sports where Natasha Jonas faced off against Mikaela Mayer (which many thought Mayer won, with the decision going to Natasha Jonas).
And we are being treated to another night of boxing from stateside tonight from Phoenix, Arizona, where undefeated Jaime Munguía will face off against the UK’s strong and durable John Ryder at Super-Middleweight. It’s a fight that draws some great interest for a variety of different reasons, with both men in different stages of their careers. Let’s delve into it.
Jaime has been a bit of an enigma in the boxing world over the past few years. With a current record of 42 Fights/42 Victories (33 By KO), it is quite easy to get wrapped up in the hype of Jamie Munguía. At the age of only 27, he is only 8 victories away from matching the GOATS undefeated record of 50-0 (Floyd Mayweather, if anyone is asking). This is quite the achievement at such a young age, and something which many elite level fighters have never matched. But how has this boxing record of 42/42 been able to been achieved?
On 13th July, 2013, Jamie Munguía made his professional boxing debut in Tijuana, Mexico at the tender age of 17. This is quite incredible at such a young age, and this has been the catalyst of Munguía being able to accumulate a large number of professional fights over the years from such a young age. However, credit where credit is due; he won them.
But we need to really focus on the fighters has faced. What class of standard are these fighters? When you compare the quality of opposition of Floyd Mayweathers record to Jamie Munguías, it really is night and day. Munguías most notable victories have come in the form of Sadam Ali, Liam Smith, Gary O’Sullivan, Gabriel Rosado and the most recent match up against Sergiy Derevyanchenko.
Although Munguías most recent fight against Sergiy Derevyanchenko was arguably the fight of 2023, it really isn’t a record which is something to scream and shout about. I feel that this is why Jamie Munguía has been able to get through his fights unbeaten. Not through the fact of being the greatest, but being managed and promoted incredibly well and fighting the right fights at the right time and getting the right opposotion.
However, you can only beat what is in front of you, and this is exactly what Jamie Munguía has done. And he has also won a World Title along the way at Light-Middleweight (WBO Light-Middleweight Title). I think this might be an edge going into Saturday night. And with the great experience obtained against a tough and durable Sergiy Derevyanchenko in 2023, this will set him up well for John Ryder.
John Ryder really is having an ‘Indian Summer’, as they say, coming towards the tail-end of his career. He has mixed it with the blue chip boxers of his weight classes in recent years, in particular Canelo Álvarez and Callum Smith, where he has more than held his own in the ring and displayed his durability and and ability to take punishment (and to also dish it out).
One thing you are guaranteed when John Ryder fights is a boxer who brings his A Game, work ethic and a will to win. He is as tough as old boots and been around the block, where he has mixed it with world class opposition. Making his debut in September 2010, this year will be his 14th as a professional boxer. Over the years, John Ryder has managed to accumulate an array of titles, including;
- WBO Inter-Continental Middleweight Title
- WBA International Middleweight Title
- IBF International Super-Middleweight Title
- WBA Interim Super-Middleweight Title
- WBO Interim Super-Middleweight Title
I feel like John Ryder is a ‘boxers boxer’. A bit of a man of the people and the industry expert. Been there and done it, knows the game and has been in it long enough to know when to take fights, and which fights to take. I think that this is clear to see with the fights being made against Callum Smith and Canelo Álvarez. I feel that John Ryder is also an over achiever, having never won an English, British or European Title or going down the traditional route, he has grafted to get to the top of his sport, fighting in Unification and Undisputed showdowns in the Super-Middleweight Division (WBA Super, WBC Diamond & The Ring Magazine, Callum Smith & WBA Super, WBC, IBF, WBO & The Ring Magazine, Canelo Álvarez). And I need to make the point clear that many, many boxing fans and analysts had Ryder beating Callum Smith when they fought back in November 2019 at the M&S Bank Arena, Liverpool.
Could the over achieving continue tonight for John Ryder with a victory over Jamie Munguía?
Honestly? It has to be a points victory for Jamie Munguía, doesn’t it? His main method of victory comes via this method, and with the confidence of his last fight, I think you might see levels to the game this evening. However, you never know what can happen, and if John Ryder is still holding in there come the Championship Rounds, could he clip Munguía? My heart says yes, my head says no (sadly).
- Date: Saturday, January 27
- Start time: 8 p.m. ET / 1 a.m. UK (Sunday)
- Main event ringwalks (approx): 11 p.m. ET / 4 a.m. UK (Sunday)
The broadcast will begin at 8 p.m. ET / 1 a.m. UK with the main event ringwalks scheduled for 11 p.m. ET / 4 a.m. UK. These timings could change due to the length of the undercard fights.
Greg Cooke X BBTV – gc___123