The October 1 super bantamweight title fight between WBC titleholder Toshiaki Nishioka and Rafael Marquez at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas will not be on Showtime, as some suspected, but the good news is, it won't be on a Top Rank independent pay-per-view either.
Instead, the fight is going to be aired on Fox Sports Net's Top Rank Live series, which makes it without question the biggest and most significant fight in the short history of the program.
Nishioka (38-4-3, 24 KO) is universally regarded as the world's top fighter at 122 pounds, while Marquez (40-6, 36 KO) is coming back down from a short and fairly unmemorable run at featherweight. He is a former legit super bantamweight champion, and a long-reigning and dominant top bantamweight titlist. At age 36, he's definitely slowed down a lot and isn't the fighter he was at his peak, but Nishioka, 35, is also a ring-worn veteran, though he's still closer to the top of his game. The fight could very much be about Nishioka's technique against Marquez's power.
The one downside is that the fight takes place the same night as HBO's middleweight double-header (Sergio Martinez vs Darren Barker, Andy Lee vs Brian Vera II), and even though it's a fine HBO card with solid fights, boxing fans are going to have to choose with this one. Nishioka vs Marquez is a very good fight, and a rare opportunity to see Nishioka on American shores against an opponent who is this highly-regarded.
As for tickets, they're available from Ticketmaster, and priced at $50, $100 and $200.