Eurosport 2 (UK, France), 2 p.m. Eastern (7 p.m. local), Lee Haskins vs. Mohamed Bouleghcha, Souleymane M'Baye vs. Ismael El Massoudi. M'Baye makes the first defense of his interim "title" against El Massoudi, a fellow Frenchman who has tended to lose when he steps up. M'Baye is a decent fighter and still seems to have something left, but God forbid the WBA actually enforce a mandatory though. Regular "titlist" Vyacheslav Senchenko has been defending once a year against abysmal competiition for a while now. Former two-weight class Commonwealth titlist Haskins attempts a move up to bantamweight after being very inactive for the last couple years. His opponent's best fight was a close loss to Stefane Jamoye.
Friday, July 15
Fox Sports 1 (Australia), 6 a.m. Eastern (8 p.m. local), Nader Hamdan vs. Daniel Pawsey, Billel Dib vs. Luke Norton. Dib is a 2-0 prospect who is the younger brother of Billal "Billy" Dub.
Eurosport (Germany), 3 p.m. Eastern (9 p.m. local), Firat Arslan vs. Lubos Suda, Nikola Sjekloka vs. Khoren Gevor. Former titlist Arslan says he's targeting Marco Huck, but he's lost two of his last three (including to Steve Herelius) and is now 40 years old, so the clock is ticking against him. Sjekloca is an undefeated super middleweight prospect whose paper record looks decent, but this is his first time fighting outside of the former Yugoslavia. Gevor used to be one of my favorite fighters, but after attacking the referee at the end of his last fight (against Robert Steiglitz), I'm shocked he can even get licensed and a little sickened that they're letting him step in the ring.
GoFightLive.tv, 7:30 p.m. Eastern ($9.99), Gabriel Rosado vs. Allan Conyers. This could be a decent scrap between two Philly-based gatekeepers who like to bring heat.
ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, 9:00 p.m. Eastern, Pawel Wolak vs. Delvin Rodriguez, Raymond Serrano vs. Daniel Sostre. Wolak has crept up into BLH's top 10 at 154 on the strength of beating Yuri Foreman and always being in solid fights. Rogriguez is pretty similar to Foreman, only with less of a chin and maybe a bit more power. He's moving up from 147, where he was one of the most consistently robbed fighters out there. He's not spectacular, but he's fun to watch, and his real-life record should probably be 29-2 instead of 25-5-2. Serrano is an undefeated prospect with some decent skills.
Direct TV (Argentina), 9 p.m. Eastern (10 p.m. local), Fernando David Saucedo vs. Carlos Ricardo Rodriguez, Marcelino Nicolas Lopez vs. Gustavo Davis Bermudez. Saucedo's claim to fame was being a title challenger against Chris John, despite scoring 3 knockouts in 41 wins. Lopez is undefeated, albeit exclusively against domestic competition.
Showtime, 11:05 p.m. Eastern, Diego Magdaleno vs. Alejandro Perez, Casey Ramos vs. Georgi Kevlishvili. Top Rank has high hopes for Magdaleno, who they consider to be one of their top prospects. Perez was once a decent prospect himself, and last time out flattened Antonio Escalante Jr. in one. I haven't heard much of Ramos before, but he's undefeated as well. As an aside, I can't remember the last time Top Rank hosted a ShoBox fight. Perhaps this is one of their efforts to deepen the relationship. Between a weekly show on Fox Sports, a few ESPN appearances, PPVs, HBO and now Showtime, they have to be averaging promoting over a card a week at this point. It takes incredible depth of the stable to be able to pull something like that off. This week, they're hoping you bounce straight from ESPN to Showtime to catch four hours of Top Rank boxing in a row.
TeleFutura, 11:35 p.m. Eastern, Jayson Velez vs. Carlos Valcarcel, Eddie Gomez vs. Johnuel Tapia. This week, we get showcases for a couple of undefeated prospects. Gomez is a Puerto Rican from the Bronx who has been mostly fighting on the island. Abner Cotto will also fight on the card. Cotto seems a lot more like cousin Jose than cousin Miguel, but he had a solid amateur career at lightweight.
A bunch more fights on Saturday, after the jump.
Saturday, July 16
Solar Sports (Philippines), 9 a.m. Eastern (9 p.m. local), Julio Cesar Miranda vs. Brian Viloria, Michael Farenas vs. Fernando Beltran Jr.. "Pingo" has been on a good run since losing to Moruti Mthlane and Pongsaklak Wonjongkam, winning a flyweight title and defending it a couple times. Viloria has been wildly inconsistent in the ring throughout his career, sometimes looking awesome, and other times looking completely lost. He'll be trying to win a title in his second weight class. Farenas-Beltran could be a decent action scrap between two fringe contenders. If anyone's in Hawaii, it may be worth checking this one out, as it's very rare for fights this big to end up out there.
Sky Sports 1 (UK), 4:00 p.m. Eastern (9 p.m. local), John Murray vs. Kevin Mitchell, Ricky Burns vs. Nicky Cook, Frankie Gavie vs. Curtis Woodhouse, Tony Bellew vs. Orvil McKenzie II. After winning British and European lightweight titles, Murray takes a bit of a step up against once-touted prospect Mitchell. Mitchell has been embroiled in a legal battle over very serious drug charges, but this fight should help see where Murray really is. He's a forward-moving boxer puncher along the lines of Juan Diaz, and considering how Michael Katsidis flattened Mitchell in three, this should provide a good gauge on him. Burns is currently a titilist at 130, while Cook is a former titlist there, but this is basically a very high level domestic scrap - the weight class is currently that weak. Gavin is one of my personal favorite prospects, but Woodhouse, despite a 15-2 record, is a very light touch. Bellew attempts his third defense of the Commonwealth light heavyweight title against McKenzie, who he knocked out his last fight but was also knocked down twice by in the process. Brick's Picks: Murray just seems a bit better and more powerful than Mitchell overall, and while I don't think he'll dominate the way Katsidis did, I do think he'll be able to bulldoze forward en route to a late stoppage. I honestly don't see much to distinguish Burns and Cook, other than that Cook has much better power and a much worse chin. Unfortunately, Burns is pretty featherfisted (rocking Roman Martinez a few times aside), and I just don't see him being able to take advantage of Cook's greatest weakness. I see this being a fairly tight one, and while I do favor Cook, the fact that Burns is the titlist means he'll probably be favored on the cards. Murray TKO-9, Cook UD-12. Bad Left Hook will have live round by round coverage of this card.
ARD (Germany), ARD.de, 4:30 p.m. Eastern (10:30 p.m. local), Marco Huck vs. Hugo Hernan Garay. Huck has an argument to be the top cruiserweight in the world, and he's taking on a better challenge than he needs to be in Garay. Garay is a former light heavyweight titlist who likes to fight quite similarly to Huck. Expect this one to be a chippy inside fight with a fair amount of fouling. A somewhat amusing story just came out saying that Huck is still a virgin, which might explain some of his pent up frustrations in the ring. Not sure who will be shown in the undercard (which ARD tends to show on delay after the main event), but recognizable names Eddy Gutknecht, Kubrat Pulev and Dominik Britsch will all be facing lesser opponents. Brick's Pick: I thought Garay deserved the nod over Zsolt Erdei twice over, but I think this fight is all wrong for him. For the first time in his career, he won't be the bigger guy in the ring, and I see almost no way he'll be able to impose his physicality on Huck. Quite the opposite I believe. Plus, Garay looked pretty faded against Gabriel Campillo a while back. Huck TKO-10.
Primetime (UK), 5:00 p.m. Eastern (10 p.m. local), Lee Purdy vs. Craig Watson, Darren Stubbs vs. Bob Ajisafe. Purdy flattened Watson his last time out to win the British welterweight title, so of course Watson gets a rematch. Stubbs and Ajisafe fight for the English light heavyweight title. Both fought in a Prizefighter tournament a while back, with neither winning it all, but they didn't face each other. As an oddity, Stubbs' last loss outside the tournament was to Amer Khan, who apparently retired once Amir Khan rose to prominence. Commonwealth welterweight titlist Denton Vassel also is taking a stay-busy fight on the undercard.
TopRank.tv (U.S./Canada/Puerto Rico Free Stream), TV Azteca (Mexico), 9:00 p.m. Eastern, Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Likar Ramos, Roman Gonzalez vs. Omar Salado, Rafael Marquez vs. Eusebio Osejo. So Top Rank is promoting four cards this weekend, but couldn't manage to get the biggest one onto US TV, or even a legal webcast? Marquez takes a warm-up fight at 140 against Ramos, a southpaw who "won" an interim "title" at super featherweight a while back. He's a southpaw and he's quick, but that's about the only true preparation Marquez gets for a Pacquiao rematch. Gonzalez is one of the best little fighters in the world. Salado is a legitimate challenger - he's drawn Ulises Solis and beaten Gilberto Keb Baas - but all three losses came by KO, and Gonzalez is, in my mind, easily the biggest puncher in that vicinity. Yes, bigger than Giovanni Segura. The younger Marquez also takes a tuneup on the undercard, his first time back since losing to Juan Manuel Lopez. While Rafael has more left in the tank than Izzy Vazquez, he might want to think about calling an end to his hall-of-fame career pretty soon. Brick's Picks: With a high eight-figure payday looming for JMM, I can't imagine he'll fool around with Ramos, who was knocked out cold by Jorge Solis. Salado likely faces a similar fate. Marquez KO-3, Gonzalez TKO-2.
Cadena Tres (Mexico), approx 12:00 a.m. Eastern, Oscar Blanquet vs. Francisco Reyes. I'm all for Blanquet staying busy, but he will have fought five guys with losing records in a row (including one making his pro debut) as a minor trinket holder at flyweight.
Also fighting this weekend - Carlos Baldomir, Al Sabaupan, Paul Delgado, Lanardo Tyner vs. Vivian Harris, Rob Calloway (now 41 years old and fighting for the first time in almost a year), Rich Power, Andy Ruiz Jr., Michael Oliveira, Joseph Kwadjo, Domenico Spada, Maurice Harris vs. Derric Rossy, Wilbert Uicab, George Tahdooahnippah, and the guy who might have the best fighter name since Jukebox Timebomb, Bimbo Nacionales.