This is an excellent crossroads fight between Barrett who is on the rise and Martinez who is coming to the end of his career though is looking for one final title shot.
Zelfa Barrett is a decent technical boxer though was getting badly out boxed and beat to the punch in his last fight versus Eric Donovan until he pulled a few big punches out the bag and Ko’d him badly. He can box competently both on the back and front foot though i’ve noticed it isn’t to hard to back him up and i’m not sure that’s a good thing for his style. He obviously has power though normally doesn’t rely on it and rather boxes his way to a victory while breaking down his opponents with body shots. While Donovan did out box him it was to be expected to an extent due to his massive amateur pedigree and also him not having as much pressure on him to perform.
Kiko Martinez is a veteran of the sport which is shown by him having 52 fights and a pro career spanning from 2004 to 2020. He’s a come forward brawler with underrated skills and power though isn’t as sharp as he used to be. He’s also moving up a weight class for this fight and while Hearn is saying he looks rejuvenated I personally think that’s just to sell the fight. I think the Martinez of old would likely win this fight and this current Martinez could but I think age and the amount of fights hes had is catching up to him.
I think Zelfa Barrett will win a decision after twelve rounds due to being closer to his prime and also being the bigger stronger fighter. Martinez will land punches and get on the inside occasionally but I think Barrett will control the fight at range for the most part while slowing down Martinez with body shots. Once Martinez gets into the second half the fight he’ll tire a bit and will either just make it to the finish line or get stopped.