Championship status will be on the line in the new year when Jermell Charlo (35-1-1) makes the first defense of his undisputed WBA (Super), WBC, IBF, WBO and the Ring light middleweight titles against WBO No. 1 contender Tim Tszyu (21-0-0).
The 12-round bout to determine the middleweight boxing champion takes place January 23 at the Michelob Ultra Arena in Paradise, Nevada.
The early Charlo vs Tszyu odds courtesy of Sportsbook have the champion as a decisive -325 favorite.
Jermell Charlo vs Tim Tszyu Odds
Odds as of December 10 at Sportsbook
The Charlo vs Tszyu odds have been released, with “Iron Man” as the -325 favorite and “The Soul Taker” as the +250 underdog. Using our odds calculator, that means a $10 bet on Charlo would win you $13.08 (your original $10 bet and a profit of $3.08). Betting on the underdog pays much better, with a $10 bet returning a profit of $35.
Charlo vs Tszyu Odds Analysis
Charlo has faced some tight lines in the past, but he’s always closed as the favorite. The 32-year-old’s shortest odds came in the first leg of his two-fight series vs Brian Carlos Castano. Charlo closed as a -120 favorite in the first fight, which ended in a draw, then cashed as a -210 favorite in the second fight, which he won by 10th-round knockout. Charlo’s only career loss came against Tony Harrison in 2018 when the Texas native closed as -1100 chalk.
Tszyu has been more heavily chalked than Charlo throughout his career. The Aussie will face his first underdog status vs Charlo on January 23. The only time his line was relatively close to EVEN was against Jeff Horn in 2020. Tszyu closed as a -145 favorite and won that fight when Horn retired after the eighth round.
Charlo Isn’t An Invincible Champion
Unlike many other boxing champions, Charlo hasn’t wasted everyone’s time fighting absolute bums to defend his undefeated record. Iron Man has stepped into the ring with legit guys and taken some punishment in doing so. Since he’s taken damage and even lost a fight, there’s a precedent for beating him.
Charlo’s fight in May vs Castano was a thrilling bout. The two fighters stood toe to toe and chucked gloves, with both guys connecting on serious combos. Charlo ate a couple of hefty uppercuts but won out with blistering shots to Castano’s body. Tszyu is a younger, more vigorous physical specimen than Castano, so in a war of attrition, the Aussie stands a better chance than the odds suggest.
Tszyu’s Chance To Realize A Dream
Boxing has always been Tim’s destiny, as his father, Kostya Tszyu, was a light welterweight world champion in his heyday. Since Tim turned pro, he’s been a shining prospect of Australian boxing, and now he gets a shot at the undisputed middleweight championship vs Charlo.
But does Tszyu stand a chance? Is this test too early? I expect there to be some fight IQ gaps between Charlo and Tszyu. The Soul Taker has indeed taken the souls of many of his previous opponents, but now he’ll be rocketed to the top tier.
Jermell Charlo vs Tim Tszyu Pick
Tszyu isn’t ready yet. Charlo is smarter and has tangled with deadlier opponents. The 32-year-old has also rebounded from the adversity of losing a belt, which, intangibly, gives him a mental advantage. I’m not suggesting Tszyu gets flatlined – in fact, I think this bout goes the distance – but I think Charlo has the Sportsbook to slip and counter his way to a hard-fought victory.