Sammy Gutierrez faces Luis Carrillo in one of two title cards this weekend.
Friday, October 22
gofightlive.tv, 7:30 p.m. Eastern ($9.99), Jorge Luis Teron vs. James Hope.
Telemundo, 11:30 p.m. Eastern, Antonio Pitalua vs. Jesus Pabon. Power punching Pitalua has notched four consecutive knockout wins since getting blitzed by Edwin Valero on the Lightweight Lightning card. It will be interesting to see how well Pabon can play keep-away - the 15-1 Puerto Rican is the draw here, but his one loss was a second round knockout. A few third-tier Cuban defectors, like Sullivan Barrera and Yoelvis Gamboa will be fighting on the undercard as well.
Telefutura, 11:30 p.m. Eastern, Mercito Gesta vs. Ivan Valle. Gesta is another young Pinoy southpaw who's been on a fast track. Valle would be known as the completely random and undeserving guy who was in Don King's Prizefighter game, sort of a Mexican Billy Dib, except that nobody actually bought it. Valle is 5-6-2 against mostly decent but not spectacular competition since 2004 and was a finalist in last year's Campeon Azteca.
Saturday, October 23
Sky Sports 1 (UK), 4 p.m. Eastern, Liam Walsh vs. Maxwell Awuku. 9-0 Walsh and 20-1-1 Ghanaian Awuku will battle it out for the vacant Commonwealth super featherweight title. This was originally supposed to be headlined by a Paul Smith fight that's been postponed about 3 times now, so the current main event is a bit underwhelming.
Sport 1 (Germany), 4:00 p.m. Eastern, Timo Hoffmann vs. Alexander Petkovic. Yes, Timo Hoffmann is still around. No, I don't know why.
TyC Sports (Argentina), 10:00 p.m. Eastern, Jesus Marcelo Andres Cuellar vs. Jose Saez, Gonzalo Omar Basile vs. Marcelo Luis Nascimento. Cuellar is an undefeated featherweight prospect. Last time I looked, Basile was still somehow ranked in the top 15 at heavyweight by one of the sanctioning bodies.
Televisa (Mexico), 10:00 p.m. Eastern, Sammy Gutierrez vs. Luis Carrillo, Eduardo Escobedo vs. Cesar Soto. Gutierrez and Carrillo are fighting for an interim minimumweight title, likely to become a full one since Roman Gonzalez appears to be moving up to light flyweight. Gutierrez doesn't have any great wins, but he was 0-2-1 against Raul Garcia in three close fights, and also lost a close one to Omar Nino (while getting blasted out by Nkosinathi Joyi in between). Carrillo is a 10-1 Colombian whose best win was over someone who retired because he dislocated his shoulder, but that's what passes for a legitimate contender in a weight class that probably shouldn't even exist. Since losing an ugly decision to Daniel Ponce de Leon where Escobedo's strategy seemed to be to stink it up as much as possible in the hopes that he could steal rounds, Escobedo has rattled off eight wins in a row, including pretty good ones over Joksan Hernandez and Mickey Roman.
HBO, 10:30 p.m. Eastern, Pacquiao-Margarito 24/7. The first installment of the hype show airs this weekend. Expect to hear a lot of overdramatics from Liev Schreiber, and a lot of talk about the controversy surrpounding Margarito's fight with Shane Mosley.
Sunday, October 24
Sky Sports 2 (UK), WOWOW (Japan), 5:00 a.m. Eastern, Toshiaki Nishioka vs. Rendall Munroe, Jorge Linares vs. Jesus Chavez, Roman Gonzalez vs. Francisco Rosas. Top to bottom, this is probably the best Japanese card we've seen in a few years. Nishioka is the legitimate #1 guy at super bantamweight, and Munroe, having made seven defenses of his European title, is a very legitimate challenger. The native Guyanese will be a big underdog here, but that's been his story since the beginning. Still a garbageman by day, Munroe got a full training camp for the first time ever, training in the mountains in Portugal for the fight. Either way, the main event could be a great style matchup between a solid technician with a huge left hand against a hard working volume puncher who has had a tendency to wear out his opponents late.
Linares is co-promoted by Teiken and Golden Boy, so he takes this one in Japan against Chavez, who's pretty much toast at this point. It appears he's moving up to lightweight long-term, where the money should be better than it was at super featherweight, although we'll see if his chin is any better up a weight class. Longtime minimumweight titlist Gonzalez is moving up in weight, as there's nobody else left to fight where the money makes sense. It's unfortunate, as there were three undefeated titlists in the weight class, and Gonzalez against Nkosinathi Joyi would probably be the best fight out there that nobody cares about, but there just isn't enough money in the minimumweight division to have a Nicaraguan based in Japan fighting in South Africa or Thailand. Rosas, who lost a majority decision to Gonzalez once before, will face Gonzalez for an interim light flyweight title, with the winner obligated to face Juan Carlos Reveco.
Also on the undercard, Japanese light welterweight champion Yoshihiro Kamegai will take a bit of a step up against Jose Alfaro, while Japanese bantamweight champion Shinsuke Yamanaka will take on Jose Silveira.
The U.K. timeslot is only two hours long, so chances are that one of the big fights won't really be televised. The Japanese broadcast is three hours long and should at least cover the three main fights, although because it's a pay channel it won't be available via Keyhole TV. Bad Left Hook will have live round-by-round coverage of this card.
Also in smaller fights this weekend: Ryo Miyazaki, Samuel Vargas, Jorge Paez Jr., Wilmer Vazquez, Luis Ortiz and Ricardo Castillo.