The Bellew vs Makabu card mostly comprises of showcase fights – with perhaps a surprise or two lurking – but the main event at Liverpool’s Goodison Park is well worth a look in. Tony Bellew and Ilunga Makabu will be meeting to decide the rightful owner of the vacant WBC Crusierweight title, and it’s an intriguing encounter. Not only is this is a boxer vs pure puncher clash, it looks to be a real pick ‘em fight to boot.
Bellew (26-2-1, 16 KO) is slightly longer in the tooth at 33, but has settled well into the Cruiserweight ranks, shaking off some of his detractors with a solid win over Mateusz Masternak last December. Bellew won’t be the bigger puncher against Makabu, but his effective counter-punching and elusiveness could make him a tricky foe for Makabu to figure out. Much of Bellew’s best wins and experience has come a division below at Light Heavyweight, which includes a win and draw against Isaac Chilemba, a close decision defeat to Nathan Cleverly (Bellew got his revenge at Cruiser in 2014), and a TKO defeat at the hands of Adonis Stevenson.
Makabu (19-1, 18 KO), who is the fresher man at 30, hasn’t mixed with the bigger names, but wins over Dmytro Kucher, Eric Fields and Ruben Angel Mino are notable scalps. Eighteen of Makabu’s nineteen wins have come by knockout, which, however you slice and dice it, shows this guy is very dangerous. But while his TNT is most potent, it doesn’t mean he can’t be outboxed and challenged; Makabu won a razor’s edge Majority Decision against Kucher, and was in another close contest with Thabiso Mchunu before finding a fight-ender in the 11th round.
Bellew vs Makabu is not an easy fight to call, but should deliver some thrills given the ingredients involved. Bigger fights and spoils will await the winner, sure, but the Cruiserweight Top 10 is anything but a walk in the park right now, with the formidable Grigory Drozd, Denis Lebedev and Krzysztof Glowacki claiming the top spots.
Bellew vs Makabu: Fight Night Lowdown
Fight Time & TV Channel
Bellew vs Makabu will broadcast Live on Sky Sports 1 (UK) from 6:00pm GMT / 1:00pm ET on Sunday, May 29th. Given a fair lump of British talent is on the card, we can expect to see plenty of the support action playing out beforehand.
Bellew vs Makabu: Undercard
Smith vs Brizuela – 12 rounds, Junior Lightweight
Three members of the Smith boxing clan will be on show, and Stephen is one of them. This matchup may not have competitiveness written all over it, but has a relatively good chance of delivering excitement. Smith (23-2, 13 KO) is the greater talent here – and really this is a tune-up of sorts following his recent defeat to Jose Pedraza – but Daniel Brizuela is a gritty operator who isn’t being welcomed back onto another Matchroom Boxing card without good reason. Brizuela (28-5-2, 8 KO) may have been overwhelmed by Olympian Luke Campbell in his return trip to the UK in October 2014, but had engaged in a knockdown-filled-slugfest with Tommy Coyle eight months earlier.
The A-side’s more refined skill set should sooner or later create a sizeable distance, but we shouldn’t be overlooking ol’ Brizuela just yet given he generally comes out throwing with bad intentions.
Sean Dodd vs Pascuale Di Silvio – 12 rounds, Lightweight
It’s hard to get too excited about this encounter, but it’s also hard to not get swept up in Dodd’s underdog story, even if he is likely destined to remain a domestic-level talent. Dodd (10-2-1, 2 KO) was leading on the scorecards against unbeaten Scott Cardle going into the 12th round last November, but was stopped with a minute remaining. Dodd failed to defy the odds and leave with the British title that night, and once again following a controversial Draw against Cardle in April, but his iron will is certainly inspirational. Dodd, 31, will be five-years-younger than Italy’s Pascquale Di Silvio (20-7-1, 6 KO) on Saturday, but a Dodd victory isn’t necessarily a formality. This will, after all, only be Dodd’s fourteenth pro outing.
Bellew vs Makabu Undercard: Best of the Rest
- Tom Farrell vs Kofi Yates – 10 rounds, British Junior Welterweight Title Eliminator
- David Price vs Jakov Gospic – 8 rounds, Heavyweight
- Callum Smith vs Cesar Hernan Reynoso – 8 rounds, Super Middleweight
- JJ Metcalf vs Tom Knight – 6 rounds, Junior Middleweight
- Paul Smith vs Zsolt Dudas – 6 rounds, Super Middleweight
Bellew vs Makubu: Extended Tale of the Tape, Facts & Stats
Note: Advantageous stats are indicated in red (some may be subjective), and championship stats refer to ‘fully fledged world titles’ only.
Tony Bellew vs Ilunga Makabu
Liverpool, UK … Kananga, Congo
33 … 30
6’ 3” … Unobtainable
74″ … Unobtainable
Orthodox … Southpaw
2007 … 2008
29 … 20
Wins / Defeats / Draws / KOs
26-2-1, 16 KO … 19-1, 18 KO
55% (16) … 90% (18)
Last 5 Fights
5, 3 KO … 5, 5 KO
Last 10 Fights
8-1-1, 5 KO … 10, 9 KO
1st Round Knockouts
3 … 4
2nd Round Knockouts
2 … 4
3rd Round Knockouts
3 … 3
4th – 6th Round Knockouts
4 … 4
Defeats by Knockout
1 … 1
3 … 0
194 … 85
9 … 1
Current Winning Streak
6 … 19
Undefeated Fighters Defeated
1 … 4
Mateusz Masternak (UD 12) … Thabiso Mchunu (KO 11)
World Title Bout Experience
Wins / Defeats / Draws / KOs
0-1-0, 0 KO … NA
NA … NA
Longest Championship Reign
NA … NA
Major Titles Won
NA … NA
Major Titles Currently Held
NA … NA
Boxing Base Top 10 World Ranking
NA … No.6
BELLEW: Mateusz Masternak (UD 12), Nathan Cleverly (SD 12, LOSS: MD 12), Julio Cesar Dos Santos (TKO 5), Valery Brudov (KO 12), Adonis Stevenson (TKO 6), Isaac Chilemba (UD 12, Draw 12), Roberto Feliciano Bolonti (UD 12), Edison Miranda (TKO 9), Ovill McKenzie (TKO 8, UD 12)
MAKABU: Thabiso Mchunu (KO 11), Glen Johnson (TKO 9), Ruben Angel Mino (KO 2), Eric Fields (KO 5), Dmytro Kucher (MD 12), Tamas Lodi (TKO 3), Gogita Gorgiladze (TKO 4), Pedro Otas (TKO 11)
What’s your take on BB’s Bellew vs Makabu Tale of the Tape, Facts & Stats? And how do you see the action playing out at the weekend? We’ll have Live Results Coverage right here on Boxing Base, plus Live Round by Round Coverage via @BoxingBase.