Back after a brief spell of inactivity, Toe The Line attempts to predict the future of the wildly unpredictable, as we take a closer look at the six Bare Knuckle Boxing prospects who are set to make moves in UBBAD BKB.
First up is Paul Hilz, who finds himself on this list after an impressive display against crafty veteran Greg Mayne at BKB 17. An Ex-Professional Boxer, Hilz combines clean crisp boxing with raw unforgiving power in a duo which will cause problems for an array of fighters across the Super Middleweight division. Unorthodox to the core, Hilz’s low defensive stance reinforced by his spinal curvature is a distinctive weapon finely tuned for the sport. One of the many distinctive aspects of Bare Knuckle Boxing is a reduction in the number of areas which can be struck safely due to Bare Knuckle’s lessened hand support. As a result, Hilz’s low stance reduces striking surface area with his chin tucked underneath his body while his forehead is presented forthcoming. This unique weapon breaks his adversary’s momentum as they are forced to pick their shots with even stricter precision in order to avoid a fight-ending hand injury.
Jean Carlos Prada
Next up we have Jimmy Sweeney’s dance partner Jean Carlos Prada, who will be gunning for a monumental upset at BKB 18. The former Olympian and South American Bronze Medalist certainly boasts an impressive resume, but how will he fare when the gloves are off in September? Only time will truly tell, but there are certainly a couple of indicators which suggest a strong transition should Prada continue with the sport. Firstly, Prada, works the body extremely well, a particularly crucial element of Bare Knuckle Boxing considering the crippling effects of bare-fist upon bodily tissue. Prada also brings with him a tremendous amount of gloved experience with 47 professional bouts and an extensive amateur career. All this mileage should, in theory, allow Prada to remain composed throughout his contests, giving him a big advantage over most debutants. Although I am not personally backing Prada to beat Sweeney I do believe he is a worthy challenger and should not be underestimated.
Another Boxer with a stellar resume, former British Cruiserweight Champion Matty Askin has had the BKB fans buzzing since he released a video back in May stating he was joining the company. Two months later and we have a debut pencilled in at BKB 18 against one of America’s finest exports Danny Batchelder. Comfortable in the pocket, Askin should have no trouble in adjusting to the compact BKB ring and looks every bit a strong transfer with punching power to match. Depending on Askin’s future plans I could very well see him going all the way to a world title with plenty of big fights available to him in the Cruiserweight and Heavyweight divisions.
One of the finest performances of BKB 17, Marley Churcher gave us a glimpse of a promising prospect who looks every bit good enough to be a genuine contender at Super Middleweight. An expert of distance management, Churcher’s stick and move style is highly effective in BKB with the jab becoming a killer blow due to the absence of knuckle padding. Complete with flair, accuracy and high boxing IQ, Churcher looks to justify exactly why there is so much hype surrounding the Berkshire Boxer. A man who once defeated former WBA Super Middleweight Champion Rocky Fielding in the amateurs, we surely are looking at a future star in the making.
‘Toe The Line’s’ pick of the Prize Fighter debutants, Mark Rawes is very much the dark horse of the £10,000 tournament. A seasoned amateur complete with a granite chin and iron will, Rawes is a Boxer who sports the type of relentless conditioning that can truly break a man. As fundamentally sound as they come, Rawes’ calculated punch picking approach greatly befits BKB’s style of fighting, with every strike looking to land with bad intentions. One to keep an eye on for sure, we are all certainly excited to see what the future brings for the Bournemouth based Boxer.
And last but by no means least, former WBA International Middleweight Champion Jack Arnfield. After a fantastic career in gloved boxing, Arnfield is set to embark on gloveless endeavours at BKB 18 against Dom McConnell. An outside fighter by trade, Arnfield brings a long rangy style backed by deceptively quick hands and an understanding of distancing few can match. A master tactician and smooth fluid boxer, Arnfield will be the one to watch for the boxing purists in attendance. Another man with gleaming potential, this signing just goes to shows the shifting standard of UBBAD BKB, as it continues to take the combat sports world by storm.