Tonight at 10 pm EST on HBO, Golden Boy Promotions presents a doubleheader from Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, with Adrien Broner challenging Antonio DeMarco for the WBC lightweight title, and top heavyweight prospect Seth "Mayhem" Mitchell battling veteran Johnathon Banks in the co-feature bout.
The fight will also air on BoxNation in the UK (and BoxNation subscribers can stream at Livesport.TV), Space in Mexico, and Main Event PPV in Australia.
Broner (24-0, 20 KO) is the favorite against DeMarco (28-2-1, 21 KO), but there is a lot of disagreement about just how much a favorite he deserves to be. As Tom Craze noted in the betting preview this week, odds for Broner have been between -700 and -1200, with DeMarco at +650. This would indicate a lopsided fight, or a fight expected to be lopsided, as far as the bookmakers go.
But as we saw about a year ago, sometimes the bookies just don't have the beat -- Amir Khan was over a -1000 favorite against Lamont Peterson, and several people warned that Peterson would be no easy out for Khan. Many feel the same about DeMarco tonight against Broner, though the BLH staff did pick 5-0 for Broner, with varying degrees of competitiveness expected from the fight.
Bottom line, though, is it's a great matchup, as good as Broner could have targeted moving up to 135. DeMarco is considered at worst the third-best lightweight in boxing, and at best, the top dog in the division, ahead of Ricky Burns and Miguel Vazquez. And of that lot, he's also the most exciting.
Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 KO) faces a decent test for where he's at in Banks (28-1-1, 19 KO), the man who recently took over Wladimir Klitschko's training. A Kronk veteran, Banks is a smart fighter who generally knows better than to get involved in slugfests against sluggers, and has some skills. Considering Mitchell is still very much a work in progress, this is a good opponent. Banks is no world-beater, and won't prepare Mitchell for a fight with the Klitschkos or anything like that, but he might be clever enough to take Mitchell into the later rounds and test his gas tank, and that's valuable.
Our live coverage will begin at 10 pm EST, and don't forget that Viloria vs Marquez live coverage is also going on tonight on BLH, starting at 9 pm EST.