Tim Tszyu Needs To Prove Himself As WBO Champion Against Brian Mendoza On Saturday Night
By Sean Jones: WBO junior middleweight champion Tim Tszyu needs to show the fans that he’s not an email champion on Saturday night when he faces the upset-minded Brian Mendoza on Showtime.
Tim needs a knockout or a decisive win over Mendoza (22-2, 16 KOs) to validate him as the true WBO junior middleweight champion, not some guy who was given the belt due to boxing politics.
With Tszyu being elevated to WBO 154-lb champion outside of the ring, fans on social media don’t recognize I’m as being champion. They still view him as one of the many contenders in the 154-lb division who has yet to prove his worth.
Unfortunately for Tszyu, he didn’t get a chance to fight Jermell for the WBO because he was given a chance to fight Canelo. That opportunity fell in Jermell’s lap, and he wasn’t going to turn it down because the money was too good.
They still feel that Jermell Charlo is the guy in the division and shouldn’t have been stripped of his title when he briefly moved up to 168, chasing greatness against Canelo Alvarez last month.
Tszyu vs. Mendoza will be shown on Showtime. The event begins at 10:30 p.m. ET on Saturday night from the Gold Coast Convention and Exhibition Centre in Broadbeach, Queensland, Australia.
Mendoza not a one-punch KO artist
“He’s truly living like a Cinderella type of story right now. I think that what I’ve seen from Brian [Mendoza]. He has this tentative style where it’s like it’s almost like he’s indecisive, but it could just be his rhythm because it’s like he’s indecisive, but then he’s effective with it,” said Shawn Porter on his channel, talking about the herky-jerky style that Brian Mendoza uses going into Saturday night’s fight against WBO junior middleweight champion Tim Tszyu.
Mendoza is too economical with his offense and holds too much. The problems he had in his losses to Jesus Ramos and Larry Gomez were due to him not letting his hands go fighting too tentatively.
In Mendoza’s last fight against Sebastian Fundora last April, he showed the same problems he’d had against Ramos & Gomez. Mendoza wasn’t throwing enough, and when he finally did open up with his offense in the seventh, he caught Fundora off guard and knocked him out. If Mendoza had started earlier, he could have saved himself a lot of punishment.
Shawn Porter sees it as a fight with offsets, as Tszyu (23-0, 17 KOs) brings things to the table that can negate what Mendoza (22-2, 16 KOs) is good at, canceling them out.
“Not a crazy high punch output. He’s just good at some things. He can move, he can get away, he can lure you in, but he ain’t sharp. ‘I’m here, I turned you.’ He’s just a solid good boxer,” Porter said about Mendoza.
“We saw the KO against [Sebastian] Fundora, and while hellacious punch thrown right there, you got to also figure in the momentum that Fundora brought into that punch,” said Porter.
The Fundora fight was a nightmare for Mendoza until the seventh because he was getting battered black & blue by him. It looked like Mendoza was surprised when he hurt Fundora, but he wasn’t going to pass up the opportunity to finish him when he saw his reaction from a right hand he’d nailed him with.
Mendoza not a one-punch KO artist
“I’m not discrediting his [Mendoza] power, but I don’t think he has what you would consider true [Jermell] Charlo one-punch. Can you say Charlo anymore? He doesn’t have that kind of power,” said Porter.
“So, it’s kind of like gas tank against gas tank with this one, which is going to be a fun fight to watch,” continued Shawn on the Tszyu vs. Mendoza fight. “Y’all should know by now. I’m a big fan of Tim Tszyu. I’ve seen him grow up in some ways.
“I think Tim is the better boxer. I think Brian is more athletic. I think Brian is smarter, but Tim’s style, and he’s confident in his style, I think that offsets the intellect that Brian brings,” said Porter.
Tszyu is equally smart, but he hasn’t fought the kind of cutting-edge opposition that he needed for him to show off his ring IQ. Most of the guys Tszyu has fought have been fodder-level ham & eggers, and he was able to easily torpedo the hapless bunch.
“I think that that’s one of Brian’s biggest keys to him is his timing, and I got my rhythm,” said Porter. “Tim is just like, ‘I’m catching, and I’m coming. Yeah, I don’t care about your timing, and it’s like your timing, and you’re intellect and ability to read me.
“Are you going to be able to read everything that I’m bringing?’ So I think it offsets,” said Porter about the Tszyu vs. Mendoza fight on Saturday night.