No, not all a once.
Mooch is one of my favorite fighters of all time and I might not be the most IMPARTIAL judge of where he belongs and how he fares against fellow Welterweight champions of the past.
Looking beyond his over confidence (arrogance?) and his habit of clowning too much and not being busy enough is something I KNOW I am guilty of. And it IS these traits of his that I know why he doesn’t get as much historical respect as he probably should have gotten.
I think the trio I have him pared up against here should provide a nice gauge as to where he fits in the history of the Welterweight division and I also think the matchups should prove to be entertaining and intriguing.
To ME, there are no knee jerk obvious calls here.
I think the most difficult matchup for Stomp is Curtis Cokes, but it is one that I also see as a fight I would take Starling in via 15 round close Unanimous or Split decision. My biggest fear with Marlon in this fight, is his gas in the championship rounds. He faded pretty decisively against Curry in making a close bout through 12 a pretty clean win over 15.
Conversely, Cokes proved in stopping Rodriguez in 15, what he had late in a championship bout. And certainly, that win on Cokes’ record, trumps anything Mooch had on his.
I do think Marlon’s defense will cause Cokes fits and this is a bout that if Marlon remains consistently active, he can build enough of a lead to allow himself to coast down the stretch and pull out a tough tactical win.
Paret was probably as inconsistent as Starling was. Had he carried a bigger punch with him, I think he could command more of Marlon’s respect and kept Mooch’s offense in the closet. As it was, I’d take Starling to take it to Paret in the later rounds and possibly stop him around the 11th or 12th. Should Paret, make it through that, I see Marlon holding on to a rather clear 15 round decision win.
Starling Quartey is a nice matchup of headcases. Quartey is busy with his jab, but if Starling shuts it down with his defense and I think he does, I think Marlon can end up dominating this bout, reducing Quartey to a one dimensional fighter.
My biggest concern with Starling in this fight is his focus and interest. Ike has some pretty good pop and if he catches Marlon clowning or zoneing out, he can make him pay.
Ultimately, I see this as the easiest of the three fights for Marlon who I again, take to win a decision that isn’t particularly debatable.
Now, everyone can call me biased and point out the fallacies of my arguments.