The undercard for the October 15 HBO pay-per-view is set, with three notable fights that may make it hard for diehard fight fans to turn down the event, even positioned between pay-per-views on 9/17 (Mayweather vs Ortiz) and 11/12 (Pacquiao vs Marquez III).
In addition to the light heavyweight world championship main event between Bernard Hopkins (52-5-2, 32 KO) and Chad Dawson (30-1, 17 KO), there will be two title fights and a title eliminator.
Junior Welterweights, 12 Rounds (IBF Eliminator)
Kendall Holt (27-4, 15 KO) vs Danny Garcia (21-0, 14 KO)
As noted previously, this is a potentially exciting fight between the explosive and vulnerable veteran Holt and rising Philadelphia prospect Garcia. Garcia, 23, is a good young fighter taking a step up against what appears to be a refocused and recharged Holt, 30, who has looked strong in two fights this year after a terrible loss in February 2010 to Kaizer Mabuza. It would be easily a career-best win for Garcia, and will be his toughest test to date, while it's also a fight to see how far back Holt really is. It's a good fight, and may well set up the winner against Lamont Peterson next year for what could be the vacant IBF belt, which is currently held by Amir Khan, but perhaps not for long.
Lightweights, 12 Rounds (Vacant WBC Title)
Jorge Linares (31-1, 20 KO) vs Antonio DeMarco (25-2-1, 18 KO)
Linares is a tremendous talent who has some questions about his chin, sort of like a Venezuelan Amir Khan, and as much as I like his upside and potential and ability, I question a bit what he's done since his TKO-1 loss to Juan Carlos Salgado in 2009. Since then, he's beaten Francisco Lorenzo (MD-10) in a final fight at 130 pounds, and then moved up to defeat a pair of shot fighters in Rocky Juarez and Jesus Chavez, followed by an easy win over Mexican non-contender Adrian Verdugo. But DeMarco has his own questions. While he showed a lot of toughness in taking a beating from Edwin Valero in his biggest fight, he didn't look particularly good in his last fight, a decision win over Reyes Sanchez. In terms of talent, I think Linares takes this one big, but DeMarco is tough and has a punch, so he's got a shot here.
Bantamweights, 12 Rounds (WBA Title)
Anselmo Moreno (31-1-1, 11 KO) vs Eric Morel (44-2, 22 KO)
This is a significant fight in the bantamweight division, but let's not lie: This has snoozer written all over it. Moreno is a bit of an ugly fighter, and so is Morel. This will be Moreno's first fight under the Golden Boy banner. The other two fights have some action potential, but this one will be a surprise if it's entertaining.
Does this lineup make you more likely to buy the show?