Lee Selby (-110) vs Carl Frampton (-110), Draw (+1800)
The bout between Carl Frampton (23-1, 14 KOs) and Andres Gutierrez was scrapped a day before the scheduled event after Gutierrez slipped and cracked his head in a freak bathtub accident. The fight never garnered much excitement, and now Frampton has the chance to face a more desirable opponent — IBF featherweight champ Lee Selby (25-1, 9 KOs).
Selby was the fighter Frampton wanted all along, but Selby was required to face Jonathan Victor Barros in a mandatory IBF title defense. Now, with Barros dispatched and Gutierrez injured, there’s nothing standing in the way of a clash between the British rivals, and both fighters have stated their willingness to meet later this year.
Nothing except the paperwork, that is.
There’s some doubt over whether the fight will actually get made. Selby is not willing to wait and has clearly stated that the next good contract he sees will get his signature, whomever it comes from. On the other side, Frampton has been burnt by Selby before and had already dismissed him as a “time-waster.”
Despite not being signed and scheduled yet, the potential matchup can be wagered on at many of the best online sportsbooks. So it’s clearly not too early to start analyzing the bout.
Frampton is the former WBA featherweight champ and, up until his loss to Léo Santa Cruz earlier this year, was regarded as one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the sport. Since the loss, he’s faded into the background somewhat and has even talked about a retirement plan, despite being just 30 years of age.
Selby, also 30, is showing no signs of slowing down. After making his third successful title defense against Barros, whom he defeated easily, the Welshman wasted no time seeking his next opponent.
Both boast an impressive fight record, but it’s Frampton who has faced the tougher opponents. He defeated a talented Scott Quigg back in February 2016 and won his first matchup with Santa Cruz later that year; he’s shown that he’s a worthy two-weight world champion. Selby has done well to retain the IBF title, but he’s mostly fought mediocre opponents.
Selby does have a huge height and reach advantage over Frampton, standing at 5’8.5″ to Frampton’s 5’5″. Frampton’s experience fighting taller opponents (which is ample) only counts for so much; the disparity is a huge disadvantage for him. Selby seems to be the hungrier fighter at the moment. In a fight this close between pugilists this talented, that could make all the difference.
Pick: Lee Selby (-110)