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Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Prediction: Big Bang by KO

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Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker Prediction: Big Bang by KO

Despite most of the boxing talk being about the Knockout Chaos card's main event between Anthony Joshua and Francis Ngannou this weekend, this Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker prediction will make it clear that all viewers also need to watch this iconic fight card's co-main. 

Considering that this bout is for the interim WBO world heavyweight title, the stakes for Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker might be even higher than that of the fight taking place right after it.

What's for certain is that, when these two fighters enter the ring, somebody is almost certainly going to get knocked out — and our Zhang vs Parker prediction should inform you which of these world-class heavyweight is more likely to hit the canvas first. 

Joshua vs Ngannou: Zhang vs Parker Prediction

Zhilei Zhang Preview

Despite Zhilei “Big Bang” Zhang — a Chinese boxer with a 26-1-1 record, which includes 21 KO victories —  being nearly 41 years old and having fought professionally since 2014, it wasn't until his two defeats over Joe Joyce in 2023 that he asserted himself as a true world heavyweight champion contender. 

Especially after the second fight in September; where Zhang dominated Joyce, defeated him by third round KO, and earned himself an impressive payday in the process. 

Standing at six-foot-six inches tall and weighing nearly 300 pounds, there's no doubt that Zhang has the power to knock anybody in the world out.

Yet, don't get it twisted: Zhang is not a brawler, and doesn't need to rely on his raw punching power to procure success inside the ring.

While Zhang doesn't have the best defense, he is more than content to trade punches with his opponents, because he believes that he will always hold the power advantage over whoever he is fighting. And considering his success — and impressive knockout ratio — this far, we don't blame him.

Also of note is that Zhilei Zhang is a southpaw fighter. He is always eager to unleash his straight left, and all it will take is for one of those to hand clean against Parker for the fight to end. 

Our Zhang vs Parker prediction is that Zhang being a southpaw will make this is an extremely difficult fight for Parker.

Joseph Parker Preview

Joseph Parker — a fighter from New Zealand with a 34-3 record, which includes 23 KO victories —  became a household name in December, when he dominated Deontay Wilder en route to a decision victory

Parker was a massive underdog in that fight, and virtually nobody expected him to get the win. Yet, he managed to avoid Wilder's devastating power the entire fight, and cruised to an impressive victory — which has set him up for this fight against Zhang. 

Considering that Zhang will almost certainly possess the power advantage in this fight — although Parker can probably put him to sleep as well — the Kiwi heavyweight would be wise to employ a similar game plan against Zhang that he did against Wilder: circle away from his dominant hand, don't swing recklessly, and work punches to the body. 

It might also behoove Parker to land some punches to Zhang's left arm early on, in order to deplete some of that “Big Bang” power.

While this strategy makes a lot of sense for Parker on the surface, a Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker prediction that nobody can deny is that Zhang is a much, much bigger fighter than Parker.

In fact, Zhang weighed in at 44 pounds heavier than Parker — which is a gigantic difference. Parker had the weight advantage against Wilder back in December, so it's difficult to say that this fight is going to play out in the same way as that last one.

Zhilei Zhang vs Joseph Parker: Big Bang Zhang Puts Parker's Lights Out

Our official Zhang vs Parker prediction is that Zhilei Zhang will defeat Joseph Parker by KO.

While we have a lot of respect for Parker's skills, Zhang is a massive heavyweight who has proven that he can take clean punches and still keep walking forward. For that reason, Parker will have to fight a nearly perfect fight to secure a victory. 

Although that's possible, we believe that Zhang by KO — currently available at -115 — is a great bet to make for Friday.

Another bet that we're interested in is for this fight to not go the distance, which you can currently get for -165. While we don't expect that Parker will produce a knockout, he may realize after feeling Zhang's power inside the ring that he has no choice but to secure a KO if he intends to win. And in that case, both of these guys will start swinging until one of them falls. 

We can't wait for this Knockout Chaos: Joshua vs Ngannou card in Saudi Arabia— and we have a hunch that the fight card is going to live up to its name.  

Grant Young is a sports writer from San Francisco. He has had two professional Muay Thai fights: he got knocked out in one, and got a knockout in the other. When it comes to his favorite fighters, it's Israel Adesanya, and then it's everyone else.