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Boxing | Thursday, December 7, 2023 10:36 AM

Day of Reckoning Acca Picks: The Heavies Hit Saudi and Joshua Leads the Line

Day of Reckoning Acca Picks: The Heavies Hit Saudi and Joshua Leads the Line
IMAGO / USA TODAY Network Deontay Wilder (red black trunks) and Tyson Fury (black gold trunks) box during their WBC Lineal heavyweight championship boxing match at T-Mobile Arena.

On what is being billed as the “Day of Reckoning”, a who’s who of heavyweight boxing will grace the Kingdom Arena, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia and you can guarantee there will be fireworks.

Anthony Joshua (26-3, 23KO) headlines the night against Otto Wallin (26-1, 14KO) as he continues his endeavour to reach the top of the mountain once more. The stacked heavyweight undercard also includes monster puncher, Deontay Wilder, Dynamite Daniel Dubois, former world champion Joseph Parker and a few more names that if you don’t know already then you will certainly know about soon!

  • Joshua vs Wallin: Joshua by Decision
  • Wilder vs Parker: Wilder rounds 7-12
  • Bivol vs Arthur: Bivol by decision or technical decision

Acca Odds: 11.88

Odds available as of December 7th 2023. Odds may now differ.

In this article:


ANTHONY JOSHUA VS OTTO WALLIN Expert Pick

Sat, December 23rd, TBA (UK Time)

Back-to-back losses against future boxing hall of famer, Oleksandr Usyk, have been followed up with back-to-back wins for Anthony Joshua who continues his pursuit of heavyweight glory once more.

This time out, the man in the opposite corner looking is Otto Wallin, a 6’6 Swede looking to derail the Joshua hype train. Worth noting here is that this will be the third time the pair have met in a boxing ring and Joshua will take a mental edge knowing he has beaten Wallin twice before (in the amateurs).

If you’re not an avid boxing follower then you may be unfamiliar with Wallin but the name is ringing a bell. It’s likely because Wallin was once an opponent of Tyson ‘The Gypsy King’ Fury back in 2019 after Fury drew with Deontay Wilder. In the T-Mobile Arena, Las Vegas, Wallin came oh so close to upset that would have shocked heavyweight boxing. Wallin inflicted a wound over the right eye of Fury that later required 47 stitches. The Swede went on to lose by split decision, but in 27 fights that remains the only blemish on Wallin’s professional record.

Unsurprisingly, Joshua comes into this one as the favourite (approx 1.29) and Wallin as the underdog (approx 4.33), but it’s certainly not a foregone conclusion. It’s difficult to suggest that Joshua, who has earned 23 of his 26 wins by way of knockout, is somehow gun shy, but his last outing against Robert Helenius was a very tentative affair that until the conclusive one-punch finish in the seventh round left many doubting Joshua’s hunger.

When Wilder fought Helenius, he stopped him in the first round, make of that what you will. Regardless, Wallin is a different prospect to Helenius and having not been stopped to this point, I think the sensible money is that he won’t be stopped this time either.

  • Selection: Joshua by decision or technical decision
  • Best Odds: 2.20
  • Bookmaker: bet365
  • Stakes: 1/10

DEONTAY WILDER VS JOSEPH PARKER Expert Pick

Sat, December 23rd, TBA (UK Time)

For me, this may well be the most intriguing fight of the night and I happen to think it will steal the show. Despite not being able to best Tyson Fury, Deontay Wilder (43-2-1, 42KO) remains one of the scariest prospects in the heavyweight division.

Often criticised for lacking fluid movement or general ring craft, the Bronze Bomber possesses an equaliser in his backhand that only a few heavyweights in history have. On the Day of Reckoning, Wilder will meet former world champion, Joseph Parker (33-3, 23KO) who is desperate to snatch a win that will propel him back up the heavyweight rankings.

Wilder, on a few occasions, has famously stated “These guys have to be perfect for 12 rounds, I only need to be perfect for two seconds, and then, in the blink of an eye, it’s bam, baby, goodnight!” and that is exactly what makes Wilder’s fights so exciting.

You daren’t blink in case you miss it! For balance though, since being stopped convincingly by Fury in consecutive fights, Wilder has boxed less than three minutes in a professional ring and in those three minutes landed just three punches (albeit one of them starched Helenius).

Parker though will fancy his chances. In boxing, precision beats power, and timing beats speed and Parker will back himself in both of those departments compared to the monster puncher.
Parker is a skilled boxer and former world champion, and there’s every chance he’s picked up some useful guidance from stablemate, Tyson Fury in preparation for this fight. If Parker can stay away from the right hand, you can expect him to ask some questions of Wilder.

There’s a nagging feeling in the back of my mind that the long layoff, the ring rust, and at 38 years old, Parker may just have caught Wilder at the right time and on the slide. That said, I’m going with Parker being good enough for at least half the fight before Wilder eventually sets him up for another KO on his impressive record.

  • Selection: Deontay Wilder rounds 7-12
  • Best Odds: 3.00
  • Bookmaker: bet365
  • Stakes: 1/10

DMITRII BIVOL VS LYNDON ARTHUR Expert Pick

In a slightly different flavour from many of the matchups on 23rd December, the clash between Dmitrii Bivol (21-0, 11KO) and Lyndon Arthur (23-1, 16KO) looks set to be a battle that will test the speed, skill, and craft of both men. Where some of the heavyweight clashes of the evening will be a case of last man standing as leather is traded, this one will be a much more measured, precise, and almost surgical affair.

Bivol comes into this one with an unblemished record, the WBA belt, and the biggest scalp in boxing on his record – Canelo Alvarez. Last year, as Canelo dared to be great and stepped up to the 175lb division, he found that Bivol was a step too far as the Kyrgyzstan man and his incredible skill set conquered the mighty Mexican. With a KO record of just over 50%, Bivol isn’t renowned for being a devastating puncher but he more than makes up for that with boxing skills that are up there with the best in the world.

Arthur, who hails from Manchester, England will arrive in Riyadh with a record that holds just a single loss coming against countryman, Anthony Yarde. Since that loss, Arthur has picked himself back up with four consecutive wins, three of them by way of knockout. Confidence will be buoyed for Arthur who will be relying on his fast, ramrod jab to help him establish a foothold in the fight. But make no mistake, these waters will be far deeper than any Arthur has set foot in previously.

Without wanting to sound disparaging of Arthur’s record, the harsh reality here is that he hasn’t fought anyone near the calibre of Bivol and this step up will likely be too much for him. Bivol is liable to be caught occasionally, but unfortunately for Arthur, Bivol is solid, durable, and rarely fazed. Expect Arthur to have enough to stick around, but not enough to hang with Bivol who will demonstrate he’s a class above.

  • Selection: Dmitrii Bivol by decision or technical decision
  • Best Odds: 1.80
  • Bookmaker: bet365
  • Stakes: 1/10

SAFER GAMBLING

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