The three-fight televised undercard for the April 3 PPV rematch between Bernard Hopkins and Roy Jones Jr. is finally officially set. Here's the lineup, and now you can all decide for sure whether or not you'll be spending your hard-earned cash on a rematch that's coming about, oh, ten years too late.
Featherweights: Rocky Juarez v. Jason Litzau
This one was suggested early in the talks and seemed to make all the sense in the world for both guys, who could badly use a win like this. Juarez (28-5-1, 20 KO) is becoming famous as a just-short contender, a guy who's gone 0-4-1 challenging for major titles at 126 and 130, and 0-5-1 if you count his loss to Humberto Soto for the interim WBC featherweight belt in 2005. He's got talent, but his mental lapses doomed him in the first fight against Chris John (where he got a gift draw), and he was barely shy of beating Marco Antonio Barrera in their first encounter, too. But in the rematches with both and his fight with Juan Manuel Marquez, he was just beaten by better fighters, and clearly so.
But Litzau is not Marquez, Barrera or John. The Minnesotan (26-2, 21 KO) put on a terrible show at Camp Lejuene against Johnnie Edwards in November, seeming tentative and unable to let his hands go. When he was coming up the ranks and getting a lot of TV hype, Litzau was known as an exciting, cocky fighter with some real power. Then he got an HBO fight with Jose Andres Hernandez in 2006 and was knocked out in eight. A year and change later, Robert Guerrero beat him from pillar to post, another KO-8.
This could be a really good fight if both guys throw punches. They both have some power. Juarez has shown a far better chin. I don't really see a way that Litzau beats Juarez, to be honest, but I do see a way this fight could really stink. Both guys badly need the win, as I said -- that could also mean both guys fight afraid to lose again.
Junior Middleweights: Sergio Mora v. Calvin Green
Mora (21-1-1, 5 KO) has not fought in almost two years, since losing his rematch with Vernon Forrest on the Casamayor-Marquez card. Green (21-4-1, 13 KO) is a 32-year-old club fighter from Baytown, Texas. This is a pure mismatch and has no business being paid for. The Golden Boy press release tries to hype Green for winning three of his last four fights, but doesn't note that those wins came over guys with incoming records of 10-9, 8-21-4, and 4-6-1. His loss came to Darnell Boone, a TKO-7 where he was well behind on the cards. He's never beaten a good fighter.
Light Heavyweights: Ismayl Sillakh v. Daniel Judah
Should be a Sillakh rout, but this is a prospect worth watching, as we've discussed before. Judah is now a pure gatekeeper, but there are worse gatekeepers out there.