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Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe II: How to Bet and Where to Watch!

British pride will electrify the 25,000-seater Selhurst Park soccer stadium in London, England, this weekend when Chris Billam-Smith goes toe-to-toe with Richard Riakporhe. This is not just a fight, it’s a rematch five years in the making, with the key difference being the WBO World Cruiserweight championship.

With a British boxing civil war about to go down, I’ve left no stone unturned in my analysis. I’ve reviewed the storylines and sportsbook odds, and dissected this contest to provide you with a comprehensive Billam-Smith and Riakporhe fight preview!

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe II: How to Bet and Where to Watch!
Richard Riakporhe backs Chris Billam-Smith - Dave Thompson

 

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe II Event Information

  • Date & Time: Saturday, June. 15, 2024 – 02:00 p.m. ET  
  • Location: Selhurst Park Soccer Stadium, London, England
  • Promotion: Boxxer
  • Scheduled Bouts: 6
  • How to Watch: NBC Sports
  • Livestream: Box Live
  • Main Event Bout: Chris Billam-Smith vs. Richard Riakporhe
  • Co-Main Event Bout: Ben Whittaker vs. Eworitise Ezra Arenyeka

 

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe Odds

 

Chris Billam-Smith: “The Gentlemen” Who’s Far from Gentle

The WBO’s 200-pound titleholder, Chris Billam-Smith, silenced the doubters when he stepped into the ring versus Lawrence Okolie to fight for the championship he now owns. Attached with a +275 underdog betting line, he took gold on a world level with three knockdowns, displaying a counter left hook with sneaky power before taking a nod on the scorecards.

With revenge in mind, Smith now makes his second title defense versus the only man ever to defeat him. Once known as a fundamentalist, he’s since undergone a significant transformation, fueling an aggressive side of his game. In fact, 50% of the ten bouts since his only career loss have ended in KO/TKO victory – A clear testament to the fact that he’s certainly no “Gentlemen” anymore.

 

Can Richard Riakporhe Replicate 2019?

As the only professional to have ever defeated the 200lb WBO champ, it was a no-brainer that Richard Riakporhe would eventually get his championship opportunity if he could build up a string of impressive wins. Unfortunately, he went AWOL for two years following the Billam-Smith clash in 2019, so this cream didn’t rise through the crop as quickly as we expected.

However, returning in 2021, Riakporhe has been rebuilt by his promotion, Boxxer. He has remained undefeated and has delivered some brutal displays, with six consecutive knockouts achieved in eight rounds or less.

An all-British title fight is massive, and the fact that it’s taking place in a soccer stadium adds even more grandeur to the event. But can Riakporhe replicate his 2019 success in the rematch?

 

Billam-Smith Revenge Tour

Looking to avenge the only loss of his professional career, Chris Billam-Smith discussed the added motivation he has with the BBC:

There’s added motivation for sure. I want to avenge the loss, get this mandatory out the way, and then we can look at unifications in America.”

 

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe II: The Tale of the Tape

Billam-Smith
Riakporhe
UK
Country
UK
33
Age
34
19-1-0
Pro Record
17-0-0
13
KOs
13
6’3”
Height
6’5”
75.0”
Reach
77.0”
W/W/W/W/W
Win/Loss (Last 5)
W/W/W/W/W
WBO
Championship Titles
-
Orthodox
Stance
Orthodox
188 days
Inactivity
210 days
6 years
Pro
7 years

 

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe Skillset Comparison

It’s been five long years since fellow countrymen Billam-Smith and Riakporhe fought; at the time, they were both relatively unknown domestic-level fighters. It was a messy, scrappy encounter with two unbeaten UK prospects, and it didn’t quite live up to the hype. As the inside fighter, the scrap favored Riakporhe, who was better in the clinch and had more power shots against Smith, who was notably smaller back then and was trying to out-box his opponents through twelve rounds. The power shots made the difference, and Billam-Smiths hesitancy to fight instead of box cost him the win.

With all of that said, Billam-Smith isn’t the same fighter. He was the mover; he was the boxer back then. Now, he’s much leaner, has bulked up, and is now a man relying on outside attributes that don’t solely present a technical fighter. He’s been putting on a frantic pace and showing his inside boxing skills that’ve developed under Shane McGuigan.

In contrast, Riakporhe, who used to be the dictator of aggression, is now willing to fight on the back foot as well. His technical abilities have leveled up ten-fold, and those fundamentals that barely used to surface can be seen on display since he’s reached a world level.

Take A Look At These Other 2 Boxing Special Articles

  • Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe 1 went the distance. 
  • Billam-Smith has gone the distance in 5 of his previous 8 pro bouts. 
  • Riakporhe’s previous 3 fights to go the distance were in London. 

 

Billam-Smith vs. Riakporhe at BetUS Sportsbook

Billam-Smith’s inside boxing and aggression have notably been an evolution since that first defeat, and the fact that Riakporhe has managed to polish his technical skills makes this upcoming rematch incredibly difficult to predict. So much so that if I were to create the boxing odds, I’d struggle to look beyond making this bout 50/50 on an equal footing.

From a betting perspective, however, the total being slightly juiced to the over is fair. The -190 pricing isn’t bad either, especially when there could be a level of hesitancy as the entire country is watching two UK fighters go to war in their own backyard.

This fight won’t replicate the first fight; as mentioned, Billam-Smith won’t be consistently on the back foot, and Riakporhe now has the confidence to prove he can technically match the opposition and be the aggressor when he chooses. But I do believe the result will be the same, as one of these men will be awarded victory through the judge’s scorecards.

My Best Boxing Bet:

 

 

Odds and information are accurate at the time of writing. Please check with official sources for the latest updates before placing any bets.

 

Questions Of The Day

Who’s the betting favorite between Billam-Smith and Riakporhe?


Despite being the WBO cruiserweight title challenger, Richard Riakporhe is the betting favorite at -250, with the comeback on Chris Billam-Smith at +200.

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