Carl Frampton made a successful American debut at the weekend with a points victory over Alejandro González Jr. in El Paso, Texas. While his second defence of his IBF super bantamweight title wasn’t as punch-perfect as we have come to expect, ‘The Jackal’ still impressed a massive U.S. television audience in his stateside introduction.
Speaking after the bout to the Belfast Newsletter, Irish boxing superstar Paddy Barnes gave his views on his best friend’s American bow.
The double Olympic bronze medalist saw lots of positives in what was an imperfect performance, admitting that “Carl was at about 60 percent on Saturday night and he still won the fight against a very good fighter and he is still world champion and undefeated.”
“He does not need me to tell him he was not at his best – but he showed he had a champion’s heart after being dropped twice in the first round.”
“But he showed how good and talented he is by regrouping and basically controlling the rest of the fight.”
The fiery light flyweight also noted the benefit of fighting on American terrestrial television, explaining that “he has not done himself any harm with the television viewers in the USA.”
“They will love the fact that be was dropped twice in the first and fought his way back to win. He will have more fans in the US after Saturday night.”
The Irish team captain also put forward possible explanations why ‘The Jackal’ was below his usual best, reasoning that “no-one had heard of González Jr. and those are the kind of fights that you can sometimes find it difficult to lift yourself for.”
“If you are fighting the likes of Leo Santa Cruz or Scott Quigg, you are well up for it – but sometimes it can be hard to lift yourself.”
“He was also out of his comfort zone as he was in America, it’s a different time zone, different food, different climate etc. “
“Everything is different but even with all that, he won the fight.”
Barnes backed his friend to learn from the tough fight, saying that “Carl is not stupid and he will look at everything and he will learn from the whole experience.”
When asked about the possibility of Frampton moving up to featherweight, Barnes trusts that “Carl will think about it and decide what is best for him.”
“He has the power to move up to featherweight – but I am sure he will think it all through before deciding what he wants to do.”
Barnes, who goes for an amazing third Olympic medal next year in Rio, also feels that a super-fight with England’s Scott Quigg is a distinct possibility in the near future – and has backed his man to win. The Holy Family boxer believes that “a fight against Quigg at super-bantamweight is still on the cards. If you know boxing, Carl wins that fight and it’s also a good money earner. For me that fight is a win-win.”