A highly-desired 140-pound fight between Timothy Bradley and Devon Alexander is predictably not going to happen in July or August, when both have dates scheduled.
Instead, Bradley has gone back to welterweight Luis Carlos Abregu for his July 17 date, according to Fightnews. Those two were going to fight, as both are promoted by Gary Shaw, in Bradley's HBO debut, but then Marcos Maidana came into the picture, and Bradley-Maidana fell through on two dates. So now, unsurprisingly, we're back at Bradley-Abregu, a fight that's kind of intriguing because Abregu can bang and it'll be fought at welterweight, which is his weight class, but carries far less status than Bradley-Maidana did, or Bradley-Alexander would have.
Devon Alexander, meanwhile, is set to fight on August 7 in St. Louis. The targets right now are former WBA titlist Andriy Kotelnik (31-3-1, 13 KO) and Breidis Prescott (22-2, 19 KO). Alexander-Kotelnik is an OK fight, as Kotelnik is still a top 10ish guy at 140 and a solid fighter. Prescott is a dud matchup, as we all know how it turns out. All Prescott has ever done is knock out a pre-Roach Amir Khan.
Since leaving Colombia, Prescott has struggled with Richard Abril, shocked Khan (Chaka Khaaaan!), been bitten by Humberto Toledo in a fight that should not have gone as deep as it did, lost to Miguel Vazquez, lost badly to Kevin Mitchell, and then he took care of club fighter ordinaire Jason Davis.
In short, Prescott has no business fighting for Alexander's title, and the fight is a mismatch. Unless they plan to extensively market Alexander-Prescott in the UK, where Prescott's reputation still is propped up like the notion that Aerosmith are America's Rolling Stones, I see no point. Nobody in the States who knows who Prescott is thinks he's a legitimate challenge for Alexander, other than he can punch pretty hard. If Kevin Mitchell could avoid any trouble whatsoever for 12 entire rounds, Alexander won't have a problem doing the same.
It's hard to get excited for Bradley-Abregu or Alexander-Kotelnik (let alone the Prescott idea, which is just terrible, in case I haven't driven home my feelings on that). Neither fight is likely to produce anything more than a predictable win for the favorites, even if Bradley-Abregu could have some short-term fireworks (though I expect it will be more Bradley completely schooling the powerful but slow and limited Abregu).
And this goes back to the silly idea that this fight needs to be BUILT MORE! I've said it before, I'll say it again. Bradley-Alexander can't be built any more with what's available in the junior welterweight division or its surrounding B- or C+ areas. The only way to make Bradley or Alexander a bigger star is to put them against one another. Bradley-Abregu isn't going to lure in the folks who don't already know Tim Bradley. Alexander-Kotelnik is going to get a spot on HBO where Max Kellerman tells us that Kotelnik is a "VERY good fighter," but really he's just a pretty good fighter, and is so predictable I don't expect Alexander would have any trouble with him whatsoever.
None of the fights mentioned here will actually make Bradley-Alexander some big fight. It can only be what it already is, unless one of them fights and beats someone totally unexpected. Even if they fought and beat Marcos Maidana, which would be a really good win, or Amir Khan, which would be a really good win, when you're talking about well-known guys who are going to notably increase the drawing potential of Bradley and/or Alexander, neither of them fit the bill either, and they're the absolute best options.
Yes, it's a strong division with a great future, but its future is now. Bradley and Alexander are already, in my opinion, the two best fighters in the division, and neither of them are legitimate stars, and fights against the likes of Abregu and Kotelnik -- while OK fights -- aren't going to make them legitimate stars.