Opinion

Adrien Broner vs Omar Figueroa Jr: Who wins at 140lbs?

Last weekend at the Nassau Coliseum in Long Island, NY we got to see Andre Berto (32-5 23KOs) overcome Devon Alexander (27-5-1 14KOs) in a close fight via split decision.

On the undercard, we saw the return of Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin (33-1-1 23KOs), who defeated J’Leon Love (24-2-1 13KOs) in a one-sided fight.

Also in attendance at the Nassau Coliseum were a number of noted boxers, including; Gary Russell Jr (29-1 17KOs), Zab Judah (44-9 30KOs), Andre Ward (32-0 16KOs), Floyd Mayweather(50-0 27KOs), and Gervonta Davis (20-0 19KOs).

However, two other fighters were also in attendance that night, and while there, they took advantage of a photo op. Adrien Broner (33-3-1 24KOs) uploaded the photo of himself and Omar Figueroa Jr. (27-0-1 19KOs) with the caption “I hear this what the people want @Omarfigueroajr #140 #LetsGetIt”.

I hear this what the people want @omarfigueroajr #140 #LetsGetIt

A post shared by Adrien AB Broner (@adrienbroner) on

These two elite fighters had been scheduled to fight in April. However, Jessie Vargas had to step in for Figueroa when he sustained an injury to his shoulder.

Figueroa’s last fight was in 2017 when he moved up to the 147lb division to take on Robert “Ghost” Guerrero, knocking him down three times in the second round before stopping him in the third round.

In victory, Figueroa, a former champion at Lightweight (135lbs), proved he could also bang at welterweight (147lbs), but has stated he feels more comfortable settling in at light-welterweight (140lbs).

In a similar vein, Broner, a former champion in four weight classes, has found his home in the 140lb division, having previously held the WBO junior lightweight title, the WBC lightweight title, WBA welterweight title and the WBA light welterweight title.

A fight between Broner and Figueroa has all the trappings of a mouthwatering contest. But how would such a contest play out?

Broner tends to be a slow starter; his punch volume is almost non-existent in the early rounds.

Broner is a skilful fighter, with fast hands. He’s also a good counter puncher, and somewhat of a showman on a good night. But, I just can’t see him winning this fight.

Broner tends to be a slow starter; his punch volume is almost non-existent in the early rounds. By the time he starts picking up the pace, it’s usually too little, too late.

When Broner fought Shawn Porter, he was getting bullied, making the fight one-sided for most of the rounds. Broner was able to knock Porter down in the 12th, but the knockdown did little to decrease the deficit, and he lost by unanimous decision.

It’s also worth noting that Broner does not like pressure. Shawn Porter (28-2-1 17KOs), Marcos Maidana (35-5 31KOs) and Mikey Garcia (30-0 30KOs) all put pressure on Broner, and they all gave him losses.

Omar Figueroa has a tough, rugged and awkward style. He swarms his opponents with a “stay busy” work ethic, often switching stances, and throwing shots from different angles.

If Broner could increase his punch volume and neutralise Figueroa’s barrage of punches, he might be able to pull off a victory. However, such a scenario seems unlikely.

In my eyes, for Broner, Figueroa is perhaps a step too far. “The Problem” will crumble in the midst of Figueroa’s high punch output, stance-switching brawling style and intense pressure, which won’t let up until Figueroa’s hand is raised in victory.

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