Hozumi Hasegawa will return to action, moving up two weight classes against Juan Carlos Burgos. (Photo by Koichi Kamoshida/Getty Images)
Thursday, November 25
Fox Sports 1 (Australia), 3:30 a.m. Eastern, Joel Brunker vs. Ramon Armando Torres. Brunker is a 16-0 featherweight prospect whose wife yells really, really loud.
Friday, November 26
NTV (Japan), Polsat Sport (Poland), 5:00 a.m. Eastern, Hozumi Hasegawa vs. Juan Carlos Burgos, Vitali Tajbert vs. Takahiro Aoh. Hasegawa was at the top of the bantamweight division and possibly a top 10 pound for pound fighter when he had his jaw broken by Fernando Montiel in his last fight, getting knocked out in the fourth round. Major props to Hozumi, who after letting the jaw recover, has immediately jumped into a title fight against a good opponent two weight classes higher. Burgos is 25-0, but hasn't been tested against anyone even close to Hozumi's level. The winner of this fight throws himself into the featherweight picture with a bullet. I don't think it's even up for debate - featherweight is the best division in boxing right now, even if it's turned the surrounding weight classes into a black hole of suck. Speaking of super featherweights, Tajbert, a German-based Kazakhstani, will attempt the second defense of his title against former titlist Aoh. The Polish broadcast looks like it's on slight delay, starting at 1 p.m. Poland time (7 a.m. Eastern). Bad Left Hook will have live round by round coverage of this fight.
Sport1 (Germany), 3:00 p.m. Eastern, replay of Vitali Tajbert vs. Takahiro Aoh. Unfortunately, they've only cordoned off a one hour time slot, which I guess means no Hasegawa fight.
Sky Sports 1 (UK), 5:00 p.m. Eastern, Matthew Hatton vs. Roberto Belge, Scott Quigg vs. Daniel Kodjo Sassou. Hatton defends his European title against nobody special in particular. The time slot for this one is only an hour and a half instead of the usual two hours, so it's possible that only the Hatton fight will be aired. On the undercard, Martin Murray and Joe Murray are both slated to fight as well. Bad Left Hook will have live round by round coverage of this fight.
Saturday, November 27
ABS-CBN (Philippines), approx. 10:15 a.m. Eastern, Milan Melindo vs. Carlos Tamara, Rocky Fuentes vs. Inthanon Sithchamuang, Randy Suico vs. Arnel Tinampay. 22-0 flyweight prospect Melindo will try to take another step up in class as he takes recent titlist Carlos Tamara. Tamara is already well known in the Philippines for his fight of the year candidate victory over Brian Viloria earlier in the year. Florante Condes and Dodie Boy Penalosa Jr. are also slated to fight on the undercard.
ARD (Germany), Primetime (UK), Sport 1 (Hungary), Polsat Sport (Poland), 5:15 p.m. Eastern, Arthur Abraham vs. Carl Froch. Please note that we WILL be covering this one live, not on Showtime's tape delayed broadcast, so there may be spoilers on the site for those who want to catch it on Showtime. We'll try to keep results behind a link, but no guarantees. Anyway, this one looks like a great matchup on paper, and determines who gets the right to face Andre Ward and who gets the right to face Glen Johnson. Not that it matters, but the two are fighting for the title vacated by Mikkel Kessler. The Polsat broadcast, which includes the full undercard, starts at 2:00 p.m. Eastern, including Robert Helenius against Atilla Kovacs. Bad Left Hook will have live round by round coverage of this fight.
Showtime, 9:00 p.m. Eastern, Andre Ward vs. Sakio Bika, Arthur Abraham vs. Carl Froch. Showtime will be showing Ward-Bika live and Abraham-Froch on tape delay. While the Ward fight isn't officially part of the Super Six, Bika is a better fighter than, say, Allan Green. Ward has quickly built up a reputation as a fighter who uses a lot of dirty tricks, and Bika has long been known as a dirty fighter (only bolstered by his first round DQ against Jean Paul Mendy his last time out, where he knocked out Mendy cold while he was down on a knee). Expect to see lots of flying elbows, unintentional intentional headbutts, holding and hitting and other tricks a little outside the rulebook in this one. Strangely, it has the potential to be both a solid action fight or a straight up stinker.
HBO, Main Event (Australia), Polsat Sport (Poland), 9:45 p.m. Eastern, Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Michael Katsidis, Andre Berto vs. Freddy Hernandez, Celestino Caballero vs. Jason Litzau. While we'll have more coverage of this card later in the week, I want to backtrack a bit on previous statements. While I do believe HBO is overpaying for the Berto fight, I want to applaud HBO for putting together this card, which is better than most PPV cards it's put out in the last few years. You get a fight of the year candidate on paper featuring a top 5 pound for pound fighter, a showcase fight featuring a budding star, and a potentially decent fight involving another guy who could be pound for pound top 10. Compare that the the undercards of the last five pay per views you've watched. Bad Left Hook will have live round by round coverage of this card.
Fox Sports Net, Fox Sports Espanol, TV Azteca (Mexico), 10:00 p.m. Eastern, Giovani Segura vs. Manuel "Chango" Vargas, Miguel Vazquez vs. Carlos Dominguez. Segura puts his true light flyweight championship on the line for the first time against Vargas, who's been a bridesmaid a lot lately but never the bride. This promises to be a war between forward moving volume punchers for as long as it lasts, although Segura is a couple classes above Vargas, mostly because he punches so much harder. It should be a war for four or five rounds until the inevitable stoppage. Vazquez will be making the first defense of his lightweight title against fringe contender Dominguez, who won Campeon Azteca a couple years back, but otherwise has lost to Brandon Rios (in a close one), Humberto Soto (in a blowout) and Zahir Raheem.
Elsewhere in the world of boxing....
- On Turkey Day at the WBA convention in Nicaragua, Brad Solomon takes on the almighty TBA, while former titlist Miguel Acosta takes on Armando Cordoba and recent title challenger Juan Palacios tries his luck against Luis Carlos Leon. Welterweight prospect Solomon was originally supposed to face Vitali Demyanenko in an unofficial title eliminator (because each of the guys ranked ahead of him - Mike Jones, Said Ouali and Saul Alvarez - appear to have no interest in fighting on foreign soil for short money against current titlist Vyacheslav Senchenko), but the Ukrainian pulled out with a bulging disc, and there hasn't been news about Solomon's handlers finding a suitable replacement. Acosta is the current WBA "regular" titlist at lightweight, but his belt won't be on the line for this one.
- Namibia has one of its bigger cards going on that it's seen in a while, as Don King is putting on a show there. Only in Namibia! The top three active Namibians (according to Boxrec) are all on the card. Recent titlist Paulus Moses faces Sergio Omar Priotti. 22-0 welterweight contender Bethuel Ushona will take on James Kimori, who gave Chop Chop Corley a tough fight not too long ago. 13-0 bantamweight prospect Paulus Ambunda will face Tawanda Chigwida. Minor WBO trinkets are on the line for all three fights in this one.
- On the Marquez-Katsidis undercard, Nate Campbell will be back in action against perennial journeyman Walter Estrada. After a somewhat disasterous foray at light welterweight, where he lost a wide decision to Victor Ortiz and sort of got knocked out against Timothy Bradley, it looks like he may be heading back to 135, where he almost certainly would be more competitive with the top guys. Also scheduled to fight are Erislandy Lara, Bastie Samir and Keith Thurman, although the Lara fight might get cancelled and they haven't been able to find an opponent.
Also fighting this weekend: Wale Omotoso, Robert Helenius, Jorge Daniel Miranda, Adrien Broner, Will Tomlinson, Javier Molina, Luis Garcia, Carl Dilks, Brett Fluornoy, Silvio Branco and Gianluca Branco.