The current WBO Super Featherweight champion Mikey Garcia isn't currently on the sideline for an injury. Nor is he unavailable to fight for some really legitimate and serious reason. Instead Garcia is on the sideline due to a dispute with his promoter. In our eyes that isn't a reason for an organisation to allow an interim title fight, instead they should force the mandatory on the champion, in this case Garcia, and if the promoter and fighter cannot agree terms then send the bout to purse bids and allow other promoters to make the fight.
Despite our dislike out pointless interim title fights we do end up with some really interesting bouts for interim title belts and the next one of those that concerns us will see the WBO crown a Super Featherweight interim champion as Terdsak Kokietgym (53-4-1, 33) battles Orlando Salido (41-12-2-1, 28) whilst current champion Mikey Garcia attempts to sort out his promotional issues.
Terdsak, an experienced Thai, will be fighting his second interim world title fight having previously been bested by Juan Manuel Marquez in a bout for the WBO interim Featherweight title. That bout saw Terdsak suffer his only stoppage loss so far though showed he was below world class. Despite that loss however Terdsak has remained on the fringes and only lost to world class fighters, including Joan Guzman, Steve Luevano and most recently Takahiro Ao. Those bouts showed that whilst not the best in the world, Terdsak isn't a bad fighter. He's tough, experienced and fundamentally solid though has, like many Thai's, fought a lot of weaker fighters.
It's those bouts with weaker fighters that have had 2 effects on Terdsak's career. Firstly they have clearly padded his record helping him to over 50 wins. Secondly they have made him look less talented than he is and watching him it often seems like he is going through the motions happy to just do what's needed to get the win rather than look impressive doing it. In many ways that's an issue with the Thai system of having talented guys fight no hopers on a regular basis though on the other hand it does keep fighters busy and getting paid, something that can help a fighter in terms of their out of the ring life.
Whilst Terdsak is talented some will question whether or not he is truly world class or not. We'd suggest not, and in all honesty we're not sure he'd make the top 10 Super Featherweights in the Orient. That's despite his long and very interesting career.
Whilst Terdsak is experienced in terms of fights it's fair to say that Salido is the truly experienced fighter here. The Mexican, who will be fighting at home, has had marginally few bouts though has fought at a higher level more consistently, in fact Salido's opponent list reads like an international who's who of boxing. That includes Juan Manuel Marquez, Robert Guerrero, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Juan Manuel Lopez, Mikey Garica and Vasyl Lomachenko. What makes it even more impressive is that a lot of Salido's secondary wins have come against guys who would be amongst the better opponents on Terdsak's record, guys like Japan's Kenichi Yamaguchi or the limited but fun to watch Rogers Mtagwa.
Salido has made a long and successful career out of being a warrior. He's not the most skilled, he's not the biggest punchers, he's not the fastest and he's not going to impressive in terms of visually exciting qualities. What he does really well however is fight. He's a fighter fighters, he's a man who will get in the ring and happily take a shot to land his own, he will bore into an opponent in order to have a fight and unless a fighter is smart enough or quick enough to avoid him Salido will usually beat them up though sheer determination and will to win. That is what makes him such a fantastic fighter to watch and one of the most entertaining men in boxing.
Sadly for Terdsak we can only see one outcome here. A win for Salido. Due to the styles of the two men we don't just imagine a win for Salido but also a stoppage as the Mexican grinds down Terdsak in the middle and later rounds to force the referee to wave off the bout. The styles and level of competition simply favour Salido so much more over Terdsak and although Salido has taken damage in the course of his career he is still a very good fighter as he'll look to prove again here.
(Image courtesy of notifight.com)