HUMBERTO SOTO vs GAMALIEL DIAZ

Location: 
TORREON, Mexico, Oct. 11
Graham's Odds: 
Soto -1500; Diaz +800
Over 8.5 +120; under 8.5 -140

After the incredible disappointment of having beaten his opponent into submission only to get disqualified with the fight to all intents and purposes over, Humberto Soto gets another world title opportunity when he fights for the vacant WBC 130-pound championship on Saturday.

Soto meets fellow-Mexican Gamaliel Diaz, who fought for a title at 126 pounds but moved up to junior lightweight after weight-making problems.

I would think that Soto will be in a mood to take care of business as expeditiously as possible, leaving nothing to chance. His DQ against Francisco Lorenzo was one of the craziest things I have ever seen in boxing. He hit his downed opponent with a parting-shot cuff on the head and it cost him the title.

Diaz was stopped in the eighth round by unbeaten Jorge Linares in his previous title bid, but he holds wins over Robert Guerrero and Elio Diaz — both undefeated when he boxed them — although Guerrero sank him with a brutal body bombardment in the sixth round of their rematch.

There is an awkward effectiveness about Diaz, and I think the move up to 130 was probably overdue for the big-framed fighter, but he seems to be overmatched in this fight.

With two Mexicans in the ring there will be the matter of pride to consider and I am expecting Diaz to give everything he has, but I don’t think it will be enough. Soto simply has the look of the better fighter and better puncher, and I think he should be able to grind Diaz down in about eight rounds.

Last Updated: 
October 8, 2008 - 10:47am