I don’t think anyone would have blamed the fighting pride of Ireland, Katie Taylor, if she had taken the rest of the year off after her thrilling, but punishing, split decision victory over Amanda Serrano back in April at Madison Square Garden.
While the Taylor/Serrano tilt still gets my vote for fight of the year, the outcome of the fight left Taylor bloodied and somewhat bowed. Serrano had Taylor badly hurt early in the fight, and it’s hard not to believe that if the ladies fought three-minute rounds (like you know they oughta should), Serrano might have taken Taylor out well before the final bell rang.
Not only that, but at Taylor’s next public appearance (the Canelo/Bivol fight), Taylor was notably difficult to understand during a ringside interview. Perhaps she was just nervous, but I found it hard not to be concerned for her present and future while watching her speak. The Serrano bout asked more from Taylor than any fight in her career, and only a fool would dismiss the possibility that something may have been taken from her by Serrano, even if Taylor kept her belts.
This Saturday, Taylor will reenter the ring against undefeated challenger Karen Carabajal. While Carabajal’s record is gaudy at 19-0, a closer look reveals that she has stacked up her wins against largely inferior opponents. In fact, the career record of all of Carabajal’s foes at the time that she fought them is a miserable 83 wins against 100 losses, with 28 draws. Not only that, but Carabajal also only has two KO wins against this collection of non-world-beaters she’s taken on. To put it mildly, Katie Taylor is a huge step up for Carabajal.
Obviously, Carabajal is a very carefully chosen opponent for Taylor. Her record may make her look formidable (and hey, maybe she will prove to be), but under subterfuge, it’s easy to see what Carabajal is for Taylor: a get-well fight. Of course, if Taylor doesn’t handle Carabajal with ease, the questions about her fighting condition and her future will become paramount.
Without question, Taylor, a contender for GOAT status (sorry Claressa, you ain’t alone), should easily outclass Carabajal. In fact, her opponent looks tailor-made for her. Carabajal lacks the obvious power to hurt Taylor, and she’s never been on such a big stage before. Because of the two-minute round nonsense, Taylor may not be able to knock Carabajal out, but she should certainly dominate this fight if her mind and body are right.
But as someone once said, you don’t fight the bout on paper; you battle it out in the ring. And in the ring, anything can happen. One way or another though, we are going to have some sense of what Katie Taylor has left to offer the sport. If she looks great, maybe we get Taylor/Serrano 2. If not, maybe Taylor walks away from the sport, knowing that she has given more to it than perhaps any woman in the history of boxing.
KATIE TAYLOR VS. KAREN CARABAJAL BETTING ODDS
Per BetMGM, Katie Taylor is the favorite at -2500, and Karen Carabajal is the underdog at +1000. Draw: +2500
TAYLOR VS. CARABAJAL FIGHT DATE, START TIME
- Date: Saturday, October 29
- Time: 1:00 p.m. ET/10:00 a.m. PT
- Main event ringwalks (approx): 5:00 p.m. ET/2:00 p.m. PT
With live fight nights, main event ring walk times are subject to change.
WHAT CHANNEL/STREAM IS KATIE TAYLOR VS. KAREN CARABAJAL?
The card will stream live on DAZN in over 200 countries across the globe (except Australia and New Zealand).However if you are in Argentina, Chile and Colombia you must download the DAZN app from the Apple App Store or Android Google Play store and then sign up from there, rather than via web browser. Watch the fight on DAZN >>
Everything you need to know ahead of #TaylorCarabajal ⤵️
— DAZN Boxing (@DAZNBoxing) October 24, 2022
TAYLOR VS. CARABAJAL FIGHT CARD
- Katie Taylor vs. Karen Elizabeth Carabajal; For Taylor’s WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF lightweight title
- Jordan Gill vs. Kiko Martinez; For Gill’s European featherweight championship and an IBF eliminator
- Gary Cully vs. Jaouad Belmehdi; lightweight
- Mary Romero vs. Ellie Scotney; For Romero's EBU European super bantamweight championship
- Johnny Fisher vs. Alfonso Damiani; heavyweight
- John Hedges vs. TBC; light heavyweight
- Thomas Whittaker-Hart vs. Mickey Ellison; light heavyweight
- Jordan Reynolds vs. TBC; super welterweight