Greatest Hit #13 Johnson vs Arnett


  • This fight came to my attention a few weeks ago when I went to make my picks on ThrowDownFantasy boxing. The guys that run this site know their boxing and could set the lines for Vegas. They had the fight a straight 50/50, the bookies priced Yudel as a huge favorite to begin with (6.0 at Paddys and 4.5 at Bet365). The odds have shortened on Arnett as expected, but I still like anything at 3.0 or over.
  • Yudel Johnson (17-2, 9KO's) at the age of 34 takes on the young 23 year old Daquan Arnett (14-1, 8KO's). The age gap is significant for me, Arnett should be the far hungrier dog in the fight, a win here launches his career. Will Yudel be motivated? What does a win give him? He is expected to win, its not for a title and its at 157 pounds so he wont be getting huge ranking points for a win here with any sanctioning body.
  • The weigh in was interesting. Arnett appears to be making a slow and steady move up to 160 pounds. Arnett weighed in at 157 pounds, Johnson weighed in at 156.5 pounds. The weight certainly favors Arnett in my opinion. He suffered his sole professional loss against another unbeaten fighter, Eddie Gomez. That fight Arnett weighed in at 148.5 pounds (a career low). At this stage in his career Arnett was making a steady move to the 147 pound division. Arnett looked sluggish in this fight and its possible he was trying to take too much weight off and it impacted on his performance. Arnett has fought above 154 pounds in his last in his last 3 fights and he won them all.
  • Johnson usually weighs in at around 153.5 pounds for his big fights. He has weighed in at 156 before, but not often and importantly when he was 156 pounds it was against poor opposition. It could be that Johnson isn't taking Arnett seriously. He didn't look good at the weigh in, his conditioning looks poor and he seems to be flabby around the gills. The extra few pounds don't appear to be muscle but rather a lack of training/lack of motivation.
  • Arnett is taking on a former established Cuban amateur -alarm bells. Well Johnson seems to have lost that hit and not get hit, tricky Cuban style if we look at his last bout against Jorge Cota. Johnson decided to slug it out, loading up on his over hand rights. Johnson got dropped twice (really he was dropped 4 times, ref ruled one a slip and one after the bell) in this fight and took a lot of big shots. It was a lazy performance. Johnson really tanked in the last half of the fight, I expect him to tank again. Johnson looked close to being stopped in this fight. Even in the fight before his Cota fight he labored to a split decision win over a very average fighter in Pablo Muguia.
  • Arnett has also been sparring in the highly competitive Mayweather gym. I watched a video of him sparring J'Leon Love, a decent super middleweight. Arnett definitely put it on him and it was very even. Arnett also has good amateur pedigree, he had over 165 amateur fights.
  • As a pro people may say that Arnett hasn't fought anyone near the quality of Johnson, well maybe that isn't as evident as some people may have you believe. Who has Yudel Johnson beaten as a pro? Seriously! He stopped a 34 year old Humberto Toledo (very average to begin with and quite chinny) and his other notable win was against Norberto Gonzalez (very average again)! When Johnson has stepped up in class, against Willie Nelson and Jorge Cota, he lost easily. So maybe its not as big a step up in class for Arnett as some think. Johnson is 34 and is yet to even fight in a twelve rounder, I think this may show a lack of commitment to his craft. This bout tonight is just 10 rounds.
  • Arnett was taken under the wing of Al Haymon after just seven fights, so its good to know he has the backing of a huge manager/promoter. In this fight who has more marketablity? The guy who is 34 and can't speak English or the 23 year old American? If the fight is close I can see Arnett being given the decision because he is on the up.
  • In my opinion this is a very even fight. In Johnson we have a guy coming off the back of two poor performances, he looks to be on the slide and he was no world beater at his peak. Arnett is young, hungry and improving a win here will be huge for his career.
  • The fight will also take place in Florida, the home state of Daquan Arnett. Arnett has spoken of his pride to be fighting in Florida and it again should give him added motivation. The fact he is fighting at home may also show us that Al Haymon wants to really build his profile in Florida. If he wasn't highly regarded he would be fighting all over America. Haymon is clearly trying to boost his name at home and build a fan base.
  • Odds at 3.4 with PaddyPowers are the market leaders, BetVictor at 3.2 but I definitely endorse the 3.0 draw no bet with Bet 365. I see it as 50/50 so the value is here no matter what bookie you choose.