Boxing Betting: Joshua & Breazeale Will Go 'Under' 3.5 Rounds

Jake Walker

Thursday, June 23, 2016 6:31 PM GMT

Thursday, Jun. 23, 2016 6:31 PM GMT

IBF Heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua (16-0, 16 KOs) will make his first title defense against fellow undefeated boxer Dominic Breazeale (17-0, 15 KOs) on June 25 at the O2 Arena in London.

Joshua proved that he is a promising up-and-comer after his a second-round KO against unbeaten Charles Martin. The 26-year old Joshua won a gold medal in the 2012 Olympics and he has ended all his fights with knockouts. His boxing odds (-2954 at Pinnacle) reflect that online sportsbooks think he will win handily, even if Breazeale is 17-0.

Still, a fight in which the two boxers have a combined record of 33-0 with 31 knockouts promises a lot of fireworks. Joshua's advantage is that his punches are more powerful and that his fundamentals are outstanding.

The 30-year old Breazeale is a former American Olympian and a former college quarterback, so no one can question his talent, but he started boxing a bit late and his technique reflects that at times, evidencing that he hasn't been a boxer his whole life. That being said, his record tells us that he's an extremely ambitious person, even if some of his wins have come against relatively weak opponents. In his last fight, he overcame Amir Mansour (a hard hitter) in 5 rounds, so it would be a mistake to take him lightly, even if it looks like Joshua is unstoppable.

At 6'7", Breazeale has good size and he is serious about making it as a pro boxer. He is a committed athlete with decent size and power but Joshua is at the top of his game and his punches are dangerous. Since he has 16 KOs in as many fights (going past the third round just once) we haven't seen his other weapons, so it's up to Breazeale to extend the fight and take Joshua to unfamiliar territory. His size and power can help him and Joshua's shin is still unproven.

Betting Analysis
When looking at both fighters, it's clear that there's a gap. Joshua's offense is crisp while Breazeale has to polish his technique. Joshua is better defensively, as Breazeale is a bit reckless. Breazeale did show guts against Mansour, who seemed to be picking him apart at times, but he managed to survive and turn the fight around. 

It's hard to see how Breazeale can win though. He has many assets but there's little value on Joshua for our boxing picks so instead the best play is the total. I like under 3.5 rounds at -342 in a fight between two heavy hitters.

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Boxing Pick: Under 3.5 Rounds (-342) 
Best Line Offered: at Pinnacle

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