Brook vs Spence: The Fight City Picks

As 2017 continues to be a stellar year for professional prizefighting, we come to one of the best possible match-ups in the welterweight division: Kell Brook vs Errol Spence Jr. While most see Manny Pacquiao and Keith Thurman as the names at the pinnacle of the 147 pound weight class, Brook and Spence are not far behind and, more to the point, are also a part of any serious conversation about the best fighters in the game today. Bottom line: tomorrow night we’re getting another high-stakes duel between two elite-level pugilists, the winner in a position to command big money showdowns with “One Time,” “The Pacman,” or any other top shelf welterweight. So without further ado, our picks for an excellent match and what could be another great fight in a great year for boxing.

Brook might not be a big puncher, per se, but such is the sharpness, accuracy, and timing of his blows that any questions surrounding the quality of Spence’s chin should finally be answered. Moreover, Brook is more proven than Spence, who passes the eye test with flying colours but is relatively untested at the top level. Brook’s world-class experience and hometown advantage may prove significant. However, going off some of the gym stories I’ve heard, as well as trusting my own judgment, I suspect “The Truth’s” talent and toughness are for real, and I think he will prove it emphatically, away from home, against his most formidable opponent to date. Spence by mid-round TKO.      — Lee Wylie

As the fight approaches I find myself as conflicted as when it was first announced. On the one hand, Brook has definitely proven his mettle. On the other hand, Spence is fresh and virtually undamaged. But then again, maybe Brook has taken on too much, so much so that he will never be the same. Or is Spence taking too big of a step too early? Both are highly-skilled and talented fighters and I just can’t pull the trigger. As a boxing fan, this is a problem I wish I faced every week. The only pick I can make is that this is going to be one hell of a fight.      — Manny Montreal 

Brook vs Spence looks like an A+ match-up: two young, skilled, fast fighters at or near their primes looking for a signature win that elevates their standing and legacy. In addition, enough questions surround it that the outcome is far from predictable, but their answers could sway the outcome conclusively. Is Spence overrated given his thin resumé? Is Brook lingering at welterweight one fight too long? How much did the Golovkin beatdown take out of “Special K”? My estimation is Spence will prove that the hype attached to him is well-founded, while Brook, with his damaged eye and the troubles that come with struggling to make weight for a division he’s no longer suited to fight at, will have a tough night. Spence by late round TKO.     — Rafael Garcia

I like Kell Brook but he took a lot of punishment against Golovkin, and sometimes fights like that take a toll on the body. Spence is not Jeff Lacy and has shown the patience, power and offensive skills to give Brook a hard time. I’m picking the American by late round TKO.      — Chris Connor

I’ve been a believer in Kell Brook for years and when this fight was announced I favoured him to win. I still think he has an excellent chance, though as the match draws near I am beginning to favour the American. Spence has a very quiet, self-assured confidence about him and a fluid, crisp boxing style with some vicious body punching. Brook is a hurtful hitter too and, I believe, an underrated boxer. But the Englishman no doubt had his struggles getting back down to 147 and if he cannot impose himself early in the fight, he could struggle in the later rounds. This is such a good match-up I cannot pick either man with a great deal of confidence and may even change my mind again before fight time, but right now I am leaning to Spence on points.        — Matt O’Brien

Spence dominates Bundu.

Seems most people are counting out Brook and thinking Spence will be too much for “Special K,” but the fact remains the Briton is, by far, the best opponent Spence has yet faced. Brook arguably has more on the line here; a second consecutive defeat would be devastating for his career. And my sense is Brook is in fact the more confident of the two. He’s been in the trenches and taken big shots from guys like Porter and Golovkin; he knows he can handle what Spence brings to the table. Meanwhile, no one knows if Errol can take Brook’s best shots. This is going to be an excellent fight, but it will be Brook who comes on in the late going to take a close points win. Brook by decision.    — Robert Portis 

Outside of Ward-Kovalev II, Brook vs Spence may be the most difficult fight to pick in 2017. Brook’s clear advantages in experience and his raucous crowd support are somewhat mitigated by the surgery to correct his broken orbital bone due to a bludgeoning suffered at the hands of Gennady Golovkin. We also don’t know how Brook will fare in a return to 147 pounds, despite the class he’s exuded in the past. As for Spence, his resumé may be adequate, but it hardly compares to Brook’s, and picking him rolls with the assumption that the mouthwatering skills and power he’s flashed translate to the elite level. The assumption here is that they do, and that as phenomenal as Brook can be, Spence is simply superior. He’ll prove it inside of ten rounds.     — Zachary Alapi

Wow. This is a hard one. A very hard one. Brook is so strong and effective. And Spence? Well, Spence has looked nothing short of magnificent. Brook has more experience, but he’s just recently recovered from a brutal beating at the gloves of Gennady Golovkin. Will that play into this? Who knows? This writer certainly hopes not, as boxing clearly needs more of Brook’s gusto and bravery. However, all things being equal, I still give the edge to Spence; he’s the faster and smoother of the two. A Brook victory certainly wouldn’t surprise me, but I feel Spence will pull through with a decision win.      — Sean Crose

As with several fights this year, you can make a legitimate case for either pugilist. It can’t be overlooked that Brook has the better record and the best win of the two, that being his decision over Shawn Porter. But Spence’s dominating performances have him in a mental place where he feels that now is his time to take over. Several scenarios could play out in this highly anticipated match. But when I analyze this match, the one I see most often is that Spence just being too much for Brook, as he targets the injured eye and scores a late-round stoppage.      — Thad Moore

Spence’s nickname of “The Truth” could not be more fitting. He is a terrific fighter with finely tuned skills, ones advanced beyond his years. Despite his record being void of any true top contenders, I see this as his coming-out party. Brook represents his toughest test and it won’t be easy, but I see Spence getting a late round stoppage. His accuracy, power and calculated aggression will be too much for the Brit to handle.        — Jamie Rebner

Brook defeats Porter.

Although I rate Spence highly (who doesn’t?), I get the feeling Brook wins on Saturday. It’s a huge step up in class for the American, his first real foray out of his comfort zone, and I believe the hostile atmosphere – combined with a huge 147-pounder bearing down on him – will make the difference. Brook surprises everyone he fights with his speed, precision and power, and this bout will be no different. Of course, Spence has a fearsome arsenal as well, so it won’t be one-way traffic. I’m going for the more experienced man, who’s fighting on home soil, to win by majority decision in a highly technical and hard-fought contest.     — Ronnie McCluskey

This fight is about as even on paper as higher-level fights get these days, and really only Brook’s experience stands out. While Spence has been anointed a sure thing on the U.S. boxing scene, he hasn’t quite earned it. He will, however, be the fresher fighter when the bell rings, and that may wind up being the difference. Coupling inactivity with coming off a battle in which part of his face got fractured, it’s difficult to feel confident that Brook can get through a bout with a legitimate welterweight puncher unscathed. Errol Spence, Jr. by decision, but a hard-fought one.      — Patrick Connor 

There’s any number of ways Brook vs Spence could go, and I won’t be shocked if the man from Sheffield lands some big shots and takes the less experienced Spence to a scary place he’s never been before, but it’s difficult to imagine that “Special K” will be at his best coming off that punishing loss to Golovkin. I envision a confident and aggressive Spence consistently beating Brook to the punch and possibly stopping him in the later rounds. As they say, speed kills, and Spence will be quicker and sharper. “The Truth” wins either by TKO or clear-cut decision.        — Michael Carbert  

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One thought on “Brook vs Spence: The Fight City Picks

  • May 26, 2017 at 4:09 pm

    This is a really pick’em fight!! Spence is the the slight favorite and he’s been steamrolling through everything put in front of him but I’m going with Special K’s experience and underrated boxing IQ (although Spence has one as well). Fighting GGG has given Brook a confidence we haven’t seen in him before. With Kell’s size, he makes Spence pay for coming forward and gets his respect early. If he can frustrate Spence by boxing on the back foot in the mid-rounds and stay away from the body assault, we’ll have a good chance to see what kind of mettle Errol is made of in the championship rounds. This fight could end in a KO from both fighters. It’s that type of fight. But I’m going with Kell by narrow split decision or Brook by late KO.


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