Isaac Chamberlain faces Lawrence Okolie on February 3, live on Sky Sports
Isaac Chamberlain’s sparring sessions with world-class cruiserweights could give him the edge in his grudge fight with Lawrence Okolie, says Sky Sports expert Johnny Nelson.
Initially I said Okolie and Chamberlain should wait and build up their rivalry, but why not make the fight now? Either Okolie or Chamberlain will establish themselves as the best contender in the country, and then you move on. If you guys are still meant to reach the top, then you will meet again.
Okolie and Chamberlain are putting their unbeaten records on the line
It’s not the end for the loser, but either way I think both fighters will learn a hell of a lot from this fight. What will count is how the losing fighter will react to a loss, because someone is going to lose their unbeaten record. The winner might even receive a warning which makes them think ‘I have to fix some things here’. For the loser, it will either break them or make them.
For the loser, it will either break them or make them.
The most high-profile wins have come from Okolie, but if you look at the background and the pedigree of the fighters they have sparred with, then I would say Chamberlain is the favourite. I know what he’s done, but the general public would expect it to be Okolie, because he’s appeared in that Team GB squad.
Chamberlain has sparred top cruiserweights such as WBO king Oleksandr Usyk
The reason why I say this is because it’s something that I did. I took myself away all over Europe to spar the best, and I know it made me the best. That’s what Isaac Chamberlain has done. I don’t know if that’s what Okolie has done.
I think both fighters are confident, but it could come down to who keeps a cool head. Can this inexperienced duo stay calm and concentrate on getting the job done, instead of making it personal? Chamberlain is going to be nervous, but once the fight starts I think he will be the coolest.
Okolie issued verbal challenge to Chamberlain after a knockout win last week Okolie issued verbal challenge to Chamberlain after a knockout win last week
This fight could finish any time. If it goes the distance, I would say Chamberlain on points, but Okolie has enough power to end it early.
I’m going with the sweet science, I’m going with what I know. I’m going to go with the boxing ability and the background check that Chamberlain’s done, sparring with the best. I understand him, I don’t understand bangers like Okolie. But you have always got to respect the power of Okolie.