Dan Rafael of ESPN.com reports today that Juan Manuel Lopez's scheduled April 16 fight is finally set with an opponent, as Lopez will put his undefeated record and 126-pound alphabet soup strap on the line against former titlist Orlando Salido.
This delays, again, the 126-pound clash between Top Rank's Lopez and Yuriorkis Gamboa, which has been on the minds of boxing fans for over a year now. Gamboa (19-0, 15 KO) will be on HBO on March 26, facing Jorge Solis (40-2-2, 29 KO), who will be stepping back down from 130 pounds to take on the talented Cuban.
Lopez (30-0, 27 KO) and Salido (34-11-2, 22 KO) will meet in Bayamon, Puerto Rico, with Showtime televising the bout. Salido's last fight was a September loss to Gamboa on HBO in a fight that disappointed many in terms of action, but saw Salido prove his sturdiness and determination. He's definitely a fighter better than his record looks on paper, but do you see this as Top Rank giving Lopez a softer touch than you'd prefer? Is the fight a good one to you because Salido is a credible challenger, even if not a first choice?
In other words, buy or sell this one? And bonus question! Which is the better fight: Lopez-Salido or Gamboa-Solis?