Carl Frampton v Scott Quigg: Flashes of brilliance could give Frampton the edge, says top analyst
IBF and WBA super-bantamweight titles. Manchester Arena, 27 February, 10,45pm.
Top Showtime analyst Al Bernstein feels the Carl Frampton's "flashes of brilliance" could well give him the edge in a pulsating encounter with Scott Quigg at the Manchester Arena tonight.
Bernstein was at ringside to witness Frampton dismantle Chris Avalos at the Odyssey Arena last year in the first defence of his IBF World title, having previously followed the Belfast man's progress from Stateside.
Not only will Bernstein be commentating on Frampton-Quigg but also the WBC World featherweight title clash between Leo Santa Cruz and Kiko Martinez.
Santa Cruz will be expected to come out on top and that could lead to a possible battle with Frampton should the Jackal conquer Quigg.
Speaking exclusively to the Belfast Telegraph, Bernstein said: "If you're talking about a technician the better man is Frampton.
"He is the multi-dimensional fighter, more so than Quigg and if he does what he is supposed to do then he is going to cause Quigg a lot of problems.
"But and this is why it is such an intriguing fight and why many believe it is a closer fight now than before, Quigg is at his peak in terms of confidence.
"He hasn't shown as many flashes of brilliance as Frampton has shown throughout his career so Frampton is probably the favourite.
"I think most boxing pundits would think that he has the edge but it's not a huge edge. Quigg is real in this fight.
"I think Quigg's best weapon is his uppercut, that's a very good weapon for him, and if Frampton languishes inside and gets nailed then that could do damage.
"Carl isn't a fighter who is safe all the time, he takes risks. They both have very good left left hooks but I would say that Frampton has the edge in that department and if it's a boxing match then Frampton wins it.
"Quigg's people are probably looking at the Gonzalez fight and feeling confident but this fight has a different dynamic to the Gonzalez fight because Frampton started that fight in El Paso chasing the fight but he's not in that position this time.
"Quigg will probably be the more aggressive fighter."
Bernstein has no doubt that victory for Frampton will raise his profile even further Stateside and lay the foundations for some big fights at super-bantam or featherweight.
"I think this is going to make a impact with American boxing fans," he says.
"Over here we are so absurdly jingoistic that if it doesn't involve an American it's hard for it to cross over from boxing fans to the wider public but among boxing fans this is a big deal here and Showtime who are covering it have been plugging it."
"People here know that these two fighters are up there with the best in the world and more so Frampton.
"Quigg is coming a little later to the table... it's a fascinating fight between two champions.
"Frampton was here last summer and so he is the better known fighter, just generally he has made a bigger impact so far.
"To be honest if he wins this fight in really good fashion then I think he will make an even bigger impact in the States than Quigg would do if he wins because fight fans here can see Frampton going on to have some very big fights against guys over here.
"Who wouldn't want to see Frampton against Leo Santa Cruz? That's a great fight."