Thurman-Collazo Preview

By Clarence George on July 7, 2015
Thurman-Collazo Preview
WBA World welterweight champion Keith Thurman defends his title against Luis Collazo.

The idea of Thurman stepping into the ring with monstrous Marcos Maidana doesn’t just run through my blood…it gallops…

This Saturday, July 11, WBA World welterweight champion Keith Thurman defends his title against Luis Collazo over a scheduled 12 rounds at the USF Sun Dome in Tampa, Florida. ESPN will televise the bout live at 9 p.m. (ET).

The 26-year-old champ (25-0, 21 KOs) is an eight-year pro who fights out of Clearwater, Florida. He most recently fought in March, successfully defending his title against cement-chinned Robert Guerrero, winning by unanimous decision. “One Time” became the interim WBA welterweight titleholder in July 2013 by knocking out Diego Chaves in the 10th. The WBA elevated him to full championship status this January (though Floyd Mayweather Jr. remains the sanctioning body’s Super World champ). Thurman’s record isn’t quite flawless. His April 2009 bout with Francisco Garcia resulted in a no decision due to an accidental clash of heads in the first. No rematch took place, Garcia retiring from the ring following his loss by first-round TKO to Tony Hirsch in July 2009.

Thirty-four-year-old Collazo (36-6, 19 KOs) was born in Brooklyn but now fights out of Queens. A 15-year pro, the southpaw’s only been stopped once, by Edwin Cassiani via third-round TKO in April 2002. Collazo most recently fought in April, stopping Christopher Degollado by second-round TKO. He’s only lost one of his last six, decisioned by Amir Khan in May 2014.

The tough New Yorker is himself a former WBA titlist. In April 2005, he beat Jose Antonio Rivera by razor-thin split decision, winning the WBA World welterweight title, which he lost by unanimous decision to Ricky Hatton in a hotly contested scrap in May 2006. In September 2013, Collazo beat Alan Sanchez by unanimous decision, winning the vacant WBA International welterweight title, which he lost to Khan by unanimous decision last year.

Assuming Thurman doesn’t underestimate Collazo, he should win this one by either late-round stoppage or clear unanimous decision. Either way, it won’t prove very much. Collazo is a warhorse worthy of respect, but well past his prime. Thurman needs to step up the level of his competition sooner rather than later, like in his next fight. I can think of several worthy competitors, including Shawn Porter and Tim Bradley. Maybe a rematch with tough “La Joya” Chaves, who made things warm for the Floridian a couple of years ago. But the idea of Thurman stepping into the ring with monstrous Marcos Maidana (who else would have a gun tattoo pointed straight at Senor Chorizo?) doesn’t just run through my blood…it gallops.

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PBC on ESPN - Thurman vs Collazo - July 11 - Teaser

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Ricky Hatton vs Luis Collazo

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  1. Clarence George 07:15am, 07/08/2015

    Thanks, Irish.  Yeah, I don’t think much of this match-up either.  While it’s certainly not outrageous like Garcia vs. Salka, it’s at best no more than middling.  What will it prove?  That Collazo’s pretty much a spent force?  We know that already.  That Thurman’s the real McCoy?  Maybe he is, but this fight won’t prove it.

  2. Irish Frankie Crawford Beat Saijo aka Gimpel 06:10am, 07/08/2015

    Clarence George-I like this report but I don’t like this match up. I know Collazo needs to make a living and that he will give it his all….I get that part. I just don’t like matches where the only suspense lies in whether or not Luis can go the distance and how that will affect Thurman’s future prospects…how it will affect.Luis’ health and welfare…..not so much…..but that’s the sport of boxing….I guess.

  3. Clarence George 04:28am, 07/08/2015

    Thanks very much, Pete.  And you and I are in tandem here.  Not only does Thurman have to beat Collazo, but he “has to look good doing it,” which is not what he did in his performance against Guerrero.  If he can’t knock out his opponent, he seems stumped and gets kinda tentative, which tells me that he may be more one-dimensional than a lot of people think.  We’ll know more when he steps up his opposition, which really should be his next step.  And I agree with you on Collazo.  Assuming he loses (a pretty safe bet), he should seriously consider bringing his respectable career to a close.  I suppose he could act as some sort of gatekeeper for a couple of years, but I don’t much see the point of it.

  4. Pete The Sneak 04:11am, 07/08/2015

    Nice write up CG…There certainly are plenty of intriguing matchup possibilities for ‘One Time,’ but yeah, he first has to get past a pretty tough kid in Collazo and has to look good doing it. This could very well be the last ‘meaningful’ fight opportunity for Luis and I believe he will bring it to Keith early and give him al he can handle. However, I see Thurman wearing down Luis by the 8th Round and am looking for a late 9-10 round stoppage/TKO for Keith. I definitely would love to see Thurman against Chino Maidana as well, as that would be some Donnybrook. I would also like to see how ‘One Time’ would fare against the steamrolling, come forward, in your face type style of fighting that is Shawn Porter. Either way you’re right CG, after Collazo, it’s about time for ‘One Time’ to step up to the big time… Peace.

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