Adamek vs. Arreola is the Former Light Heavyweight and Cruiserweight Champion’s First True Test at Heavyweight
When the casual sports fan thinks of boxing, they usually think Heavyweight. Dominant fighters such as Rocky Marciano, Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, and Mike Tyson and their sheer dominance and ubiquity throughout the boxing world always come to mind. These days, the heavyweight division is rather dull and is dominated by fighters whose styles in the ring and demeanors outside of the ring may not be interesting to sports fans, at least in this country. The talk of boxing is instead focused on the other premier divisions such as Welterweight division, featuring exciting, talented and entertaining fighters such as Floyd Mayweather, Manny Pacquiao and Miguel Cotto.
However, the Heavyweight division is experiencing resurgence and a newfound marketability in fighters who are making the jump up from Cruiserweight to Heavyweight, such as Britain’s David Haye, who is a very talented and marketable fighter who recently defeated the gargantuan Russian Nikolay Valuev to win the WBA title and has a great Heavyweight future ahead of him, as well as Tomasz Adamek, a gutsy and very impressive Polish fighter who made the jump more recently and is looking to make an immediate impact upon the division.
Adamek has already tested the waters in the Heavyweight division but against overmatched opponents. His supposed biggest Heavyweight test thus far has been a washed up Andrew Golota, also from Poland, who at 41 years old was at the end of his career while Adamek is in his prime. Adamek was able to win this battle of Poland’s most well known fighters by dismantling Golota via 5th round TKO. Adamek has also defeated Jason Estrada this past February and is scheduled to take on his biggest Heavyweight test yet in Chris Arreola this coming April.
After building a formidable career as a Cruiserweight and Light Heavyweight (winning the IBF Cruiserweight and WBC Light Heavyweight title), Adamek is ready to not necessarily leave the Cruiserweight division for good, but instead to challenge himself and face the best the Heavyweight division has to offer. According to ESPN, Adamek stated “Can you be the best Cruiserweight in the world and try to be the best Heavyweight? Why not?” Adamek feels as if the best fight proposals being made to him are coming from the Heavyweight division, not the Cruiserweight division.
Whether or not Adamek does well in the Heavyweight division depends on a few things. First and foremost are the potential fight proposals that will be made to him. He has made it very clear that he is not switching weight classes for good. He is only switching because the best opportunities for him lie in the Heavyweight division. If, for example, Bernard Hopkins agrees to fight Adamek, I’m sure he would lose a few pounds to take on the Executioner.
Another issue is how Adamek will handle the size and power differences amongst fighters in the Heavyweight division. Chris Arreola will be no walk in the park for Adamek. Arreola is a big guy, he is very aggressive and he hits harder than anyone Adamek has ever faced. This will be a true test for Adamek and a good barometer as to how he will do in the division. His first two heavyweight fights against Golota and Estrada were not exactly against the cream of the Heavyweight crop. If he were to fight guys like the Klitschko brothers and David Haye, he would have an extremely tough time. The Klitschko’s superb defense will leave Adamek and his aggressive, attacking style baffled, and David Haye’s speed could pose a serious problem for Adamek, similar to what he ran into in his encounter with Chad Dawson.
However, if Adamek can learn from his first few Heavyweight tests and alter his style to become more of a boxer who picks his times to be offensive as opposed to an aggressive, fearless attacking fighter, he may be able to rise up the Heavyweight ranks.
If Adamek wants to become a force to be reckoned with in the Heavyweight division, he will have to endure a few more learning experiences and perhaps maybe even a wakeup call against someone more powerful and aggressive than himself. He does have the talent and heart to succeed at this division, and as stated earlier, it’s all about where the best fights for Adamek are. Kudos to Tomasz for not being afraid to take the challenging fights and further advance his career as one of the premier Cruiserweights, and possibly one of the premier Heavyweights of the future.