Carl Frampton is in a great position. If he beats Jeremy Parodi on Saturday in the title eliminator, he'll be set up to challenge Kiko Martinez for the IBF super bantamweight title as the mandatory challenger. Why is that such an enviable position?
Parodi is a tough, young professional fighter, but he has little-to-no power with only nine KOs in 37 fights. Anything can happen in boxing, but this looks to be a fight Frampton should win with his quickness and punching prowess.
That punching ability was on display in his last fight against none other than current IBF super bantamweight champion Martinez. Frampton defeated Martinez on a sizzling right hand in the ninth round of their bout in February.
Not only is Frampton set to take on a fighter who would appear to have little shot at beating him, he's also directly in line to challenge a guy he's already knocked out for his first world championship.
Does it get any better than that? Actually it does. The fight with Parodi takes place in Frampton's hometown of Belfast, Ireland. Ever hear the hip-hop classic "I Got it Made" by Special Ed? That's the song that should be playing when Frampton walks to the ring on Saturday.
Things could change if Martinez loses to Jeffrey Mathebula in December. Mathebula gave Nonito Donaire a solid fight before the Filipino Flash broke his jaw and eeked out a win by decision in July 2012.
Mathebula's height and reach (5'11" and 72") would make him a tough assignment for Frampton. At the very least, Frampton appears to have a good shot at an opportunity to win his first world title.
The 26-year-old currently ranks third in the IBF rankings and Parodi is fourth. However, one look at their list of opponents and in-ring skills, and it is clear there is a marked difference between the two.
Martinez represented the first real test for Frampton, but he passed with flying colors. Parodi has yet to face anyone whose name would ring a bell with anyone besides English boxing savants.
This is boxing and funny things have been known to happen on the way to supposed sure things, but you’d be hard-pressed to find a talented young fighter with better laid plans than Frampton.
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