Picture of Boxeoguide


Investing With Boxing Picks, Week 87: Let’s Pick Some Underdogs

When you're betting more underdogs than favorites, you're probably doing it wrong. We're doing it anyway.

Our chief bettor was out of commission for an extended period, but we’re back now with a vengeance since our mutual funds return has gone south and wrecked our impending retirement.  Here’s how our portfolio looks now:


Boxing Betting Annualized Rate of Return (since 9/17/20):  13.97%

Mutual Funds Annualized Rate of Return (since 9/17/20):    3.57%

Boxing Betting Return On Investment (ROI):   6.33%


This week we’re betting the main event of DAZN’s Friday card from Spain, Kerman Lejarraga vs James Metcalf.  This is a big fight for both guys and both have been in some tough battles in recent years.  Metcalf lost two close battles in 2021, a brutal war against Ted Cheeseman and a tight loss to Kieron Conway.  He’s been effective at range and in close at different times and he’s able to try some different tactics.  We suspect he may feel like he has an advantage at distance with footwork against Lejarraga but he may be drawn into a war.  Lejarraga has been tagged and hurt several times in his career but he really only knows one way.  He’s coming to put pressure on you.  If Jez Smith had enough pop to get him in trouble, then Metcalf can easily do the same.  And maybe Metcalf will come straight at him and try to get him out of there.  If it goes the distance we like Lejarraga’s chances on the cards as the home fighter.  We think this might be a hell of a brawl and it’s a tough one to call.  But we’re going with Lejarraga.


$39 on Kerman Lejarraga at -192


We’re also betting the main event on Queensberry‘s Friday show, Brad Foster vs Ionut Baluta.  We’re a little surprised at the line on this fight.  Baluta opened as the favorite and has been bet into a slight underdog.  Foster lost a close one his last time out to Jason Cunningham, a solid fighter.  We think he’s a fairly basic fighter who may have trouble tracking down a good mover.  Baluta may not be a classic back foot fighter but he’s crafty enough to give most guys some problems.  We’ve also seen him let his hands go and do some damage, particularly in his stoppage of David Oliver Joyce.  Baluta’s the taller and longer fighter here and we think he’s trouble for Foster.  He might not get the benefit of the scorecards but we’re expecting him to make it clear and difficult not to give him the nod.  Since the line moved so much and we think Baluta is the better fighter anyway, we’re going with a 3 unit bet on this fight.


$39 on Ionut Baluta at +107


We’re also betting the main event of Friday’s initial installment of ProBox TV’s new series, Jean Pascal vs Fanlong Meng.  We’re once again breaking one of our rules and betting a fight when we have never seen one of the participants.  We don’t know a thing about Meng.  But we know Pascal.  And we know he’s now 39 years old.  Still, he has fought and beaten top level guys as recently as 2019 and has only ever been beaten by champion level fighters.  We don’t think Meng is in that category.  But a near 3 year layoff at age 39 could produce serious ring rust or even career ending decay.  I guess we’re going to find out.  But we’re getting underdog odds here and it feels like we have to take a shot with Pascal.


$26 on Jean Pascal at +194


Finally, we’ll take a look at Saturday’s co-main event on Top Rank‘s card, Jamel Herring vs Jamaine Ortiz.  This is interesting matchmaking and it has proven to be interesting bookmaking as well.  Herring opened as a -278 favorite and has been bet to a +179 underdog.  Herring is the name here, an experienced veteran who has been in big fights.  He’s a solid technician whose height and southpaw style can be tricky, but he’s not a guy who will dominate you with athleticism.  Ortiz may have a slight hand speed advantage here and he’s a good athlete.  He faced several top amateur fighters but Herring will be the best he’s fought as a pro.  This may end up being a bit of a chess match and if it does we think that favors Herring because the superior athleticism of Ortiz may be neutralized.  Ortiz has beaten southpaws before but not with the reach and discipline that Herring brings to the table.  Had the odds remained with Herring as the favorite our bet would be different here.  But we’ll place a small bet on Herring.


$13 on Jamel Herring at +179



Share this post