Liam Smith will be looking to move one step closer to another light middleweight title shot when he takes on Jessie Vargas on the Katie Taylor versus Amanda Serrano undercard in New York.
Recommended bet2:00 am Sunday May 01
Jessie Vargas v Liam Smith Boxing Betting Tips & Predictions
Former WBO light middleweight champion Liam Smith will be looking to put on a performance at Madison Square Garden and prove to the rest of the division that he is not a spent force.
The Liverpudlian won the WBO title back in 2015 when he knocked out John Thompson at the Manchester Arena.
He had two successful title defences against Jimmy Kelly and Predrag Radosevic, but this title reign came to an end as he suffered a ninth-round knockout at the hands of Canelo Alvarez in Texas in September 2016.
Just short of two years later, Smith had the chance to win back that title when he fought Jaime Munguia. It ended in heartbreak as he lost in a unanimous decision.
That was the last time Smith fought for the world title, but he did win the WBO International light middleweight title in his last fight against Anthony Fowler in his hometown of Liverpool last October.
Smith needs to put in a performance to get back in the mix. He is currently ranked fourth in the world by the WBO and WBC, fifth by the WBA and 10th by The Ring magazine.
Jessie Vargas has had 34 fights as a professional and has won 29 of them. Out of those 29 wins, 11 have come by way of knockout with 18 on points.
Vargas has drawn two and lost one of his last four fights. He comes into this contest on the back of a unanimous points decision defeat against Mikey Garcia in Texas last February.
Vargas is a tough fighter, he drew against Adrian Boner and took Manny Pacquiao the distance. He has never been knocked out.
That is a good statistic to have on your record, but I am backing Beefy to stop Vargas late in this fight. Smith will be relentless and will keep the pressure on at all times. He has 17 wins by stoppage and I am backing him to claim number 18 with a 10-round stoppage.
Recommended bet2:00 am Sunday May 01
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