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Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Ring walk times, Tale of the Tape, Undercard & Odds

Commonwealth super-bantamweight champion Dennis McCann takes on the tough Ionut Baluta in August for the vacant WBO Intercontinental title as the Menace bids to add another strap to his growing collection.

The Kent puncher has already collected the WBO youth and the WBC international silver belts and an eight-round knockout of Joe Ham saw him take the Commonwealth title last time out. 

McCann is an extremely promising fighter and if the Menace is successful at York Hall on 18th August, it won't be long before the 22-year-old is in prime position for a world title shot. 

Baluta has mixed it with the likes of Michael Conlan, Brad Foster and Liam Davies in recent times, and win or lose, the Romanian always comes to fight. 

Here's everything you need to know ahead of another big fight night in London:

Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Fight Preview
Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: All You Need To Know
Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Fighter Profiles
Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Tale of the Tape
Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Undercard

Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Fight Preview

WhatDennis McCann v Ionut Baluta
WhereYork Hall, London
WhenSaturday 18th August, 2023
How to watchTNT Sports (formally BT Sport)

Dennis McCann faces the toughest test of his fledgling career as takes on Ionut Baluta, at York Hall.

McCann has impressed in his 14 fights to date, but he has yet to fight anyone as good as ‘Il Capo’.

Baluta has spent the last four years taking on, and often beating, British and Irish opposition. In seven fights during that period, the Romanian has won five and lost two.

Those defeats came against, 2012 London Olympic bronze medallist, Michael Conlan (by the finest of margins) and the fast-rising Liam Davies.

Baluta has twice previously pulled off the upset at York Hall and will hope it is, once again, a happy hunting ground.

‘The Menace’ will look to get in the mix with Queensberry Promotions stablemates: Liam Davies, Jason Cunningham and Andrew Cain, with victory over Baluta.

But the big question remains, will he be victorious?

By John MacDonald

Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: All You Need To Know


When is Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta?

The vacant WBO Intercontinental title contest between McCann and Baluta is due to take place on Saturday 18th August, 2023.

What time is Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta?

The televised card will begin at 19:00 UK time, with the ring walks for the main event expected to get underway at 22:30. 

Exact timings will depend on the duration of the undercard contests. 

Where is Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta taking place?

The bout will take place at London's famous York Hall. The historic venue opened in 1929 and has been hosting boxing events since the 1950s.

Several classic British title fights have been held at the East End setting and the compact nature of the building generates a special atmosphere. 

World heavyweight champions Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua fought at the Bethnal Green arena and many of Britain's other top fighters have seen action at York Hall. 

Can I watch Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta?

The fight will be shown live on TNT Sport. Televised action gets underway at 19:00 on the channel formerly known as BT Sport. 

Are there any belts on the line for Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta?

The vacant WBO Intercontinental title is on the line. That belt doesn't hold a great deal of prestige on its own, but it's a useful tool to climb the rankings and move into mandatory positions. 

McCann holds the Commonwealth super-bantamweight title, but that strap is not up for grabs in London.

What is Dennis McCann's record?

McCann has an unblemished 14-fight record, but even those numbers don't do the Kent fighter justice. 

The 22-year-old is a ferocious puncher and eight of his victories have come by stoppage. 

McCann stands out as a prospect due to his aggressive style and the Menace offers opponents few moments of peace. 

He claimed the Commonwealth title when stopping Joe Ham at the O2 Arena in London last year and is a rapidly rising fighter. 

What is Ionut Baluta's record?

Baluta is a tough, rough and ready fighter and there is plenty of substance to the Romanian's record. 

Il Capo has lost four of his 20 professional contests, and only three of his 14 victories have come by stoppage, but that isn't a true reflection of his ability. 

The 29-year-old has been in with excellent fighters such as Andrew Cain, Conlan, Foster and Davies.

He got the better of Foster and Cain and there are also excellent wins over David Oliver Joyce and TJ Doheny on his card. 

Baluta is a former European champion and his opponents are guaranteed a tough time. 

Dennis McCann Profile:


As a southpaw who carries a bit of power, it was inevitable that TNT Sport and Frank Warren would brand McCann ‘the next Naseem Hamed,’ in a bid to generate some hype.

Such comparisons are inaccurate and unhelpful. The 22-year-old may not be the second-coming of Nas, but he is an exciting prospect who deserves recognition on his own merits. 

After some early eye-catching performances, it had been difficult to match the prodigy with suitable opponents, but last year McCann faced, and stopped, two credible fighters.

In July 2022, he went up to featherweight to take on former British title challenger James Beech Jr. ‘The Menace’ had the dream start, scoring a knockdown in the opening round. Beech Jr. was on the canvas again in the eighth, before his corner threw in the towel.

Four months later, McCann was back down at 122lbs where he claimed the Commonwealth strap against Joe Ham, halting the Scotsman in the eighth.

McCann will certainly land the more eye-catching shots against Baluta, but there is a concern he may be out-worked by his opponent.

The Romanian is relentless and will force the pace for all 36 minutes of the fight. McCann has never been beyond the eighth round, and it remains to be seen if he has the stamina to match ‘Il Capo.’

If McCann is victorious, it will be a major statement.

Hand speedCan over-reach
Superb timingLeaves chin exposed too often
Good lateral movementA tad erratic when trying to close a fight
Very accurate with shotsMoves back in straight lines

By John MacDonald

Ionut Baluta Profile:


As a rule, the away corner fighter is not supposed to win, but Baluta doesn't half enjoy tearing up the script!

History proves the Romanian is not the just there to make up the numbers.

‘Il Capo’ has amassed an impressive list of upsets. First, he dropped and outpointed Kyle Williams; he followed that up with a shock victory over former world champion TJ Doheny and made it three-in-a-row by stopping David Oliver Joyce.

A narrow defeat against Conlan followed, before he got back to winning ways against Brad Foster. Illness hampered his performance against Liam Davies, who was too good on the night.

In March, it appeared Baluta was on the verge of suffering consecutive losses when he was floored twice in the opening round, against Andrew Cain. Somehow, Baluta survived, scored a knockdown of his own in the ninth frame and prevailed by split decision.

Baluta does not take a backwards step, what he lacks in technique, he makes up for in work rate. 

Against Cain, he demonstrated a good chin and powers of recuperation to survive the early onslaught. 

‘Il Capo’ may need to call upon those attributes again if he is to be successful against McCann. ‘The Menace’ is a spiteful counter-puncher and Baluta leaves himself open at times while throwing wide hooks.

Applies pressure wellOpen to straight shots
Work rateWork rate is questionable
Good chinSuspect chin
A superb body puncherProne to body shots

By John MacDonald

Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Tale of the Tape


John Macdonald analyses the credentials of both fighters ahead of their upcoming bout in London...

 Dennis McCannIonut Baluta
Height:5ft 7ins5ft 10.5ins
Trainer:Alan SmithJosh Burman
Record:14-0 (8 KOs)16-4 (3 KOs)
Titles:Commonwealth super-bantamweight titleN/A
Last Fight:W (TKO8) v Joe Ham (Nov 2022)W (SD) v Andrew Cain (Mar 2023)

Dennis McCann v Ionut Baluta: Undercard


Nathaniel Collins and Raza Hamza get it on for the British featherweight title, with more undercard fights to be announced.

Dennis McCann v Ionut BalutaWBO Inter-Continental super-bantamweight title
Nathaniel Collins v Raza HamzaBritish featherweight title
Ryan Garner v Juan Jesus AntunezWBC International super-featherweight title
Raven Chapman v Lila dos Santos FurtadoWomen's WBC International featherweight title
Masood Abdullah v Sabelo NgebinyanaFeatherweight bout

View all upcoming boxing odds 

Odds displayed within this article were correct at the time of writing and are subject to fluctuation.

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