Marco Huck will look to close a memorable 2012 campaign with a win over Firat Arslan on November 3. (Photo by Karina Hessland/Bongarts/Getty Images)
Marco Huck to Face Firat Arslan on November 3
Sauerland Event sent out a press release today to announce a November 3 fight in Germany at Gerry Weber Stadium between WBO cruiserweight titlist Marco Huck and veteran Firat Arslan.
Huck (34-2-1, 25 KO) has had a really good year despite not scoring any wins, as he lost a disputed decision to WBA "regular" heavyweight titlist Alexander Povetkin in February, and went to a draw in a great fight with Ola Afolabi in May. The 27-year-old Huck will be making the tenth defense of his WBO belt, and a win would make him the WBO's "super" champion at the weight, which means pretty much nothing to me and you, but apparently means something to Huck, as he has vowed to make that dream come true and all that jive.
Arslan (32-5-2, 21 KO) is 41 years old and was thought to be washed up, and hell, he probably still is, but this isn't that bad a fight -- Firat looked pretty good in a draw with Alexander Alekseev in May, and I thought Arslan was really unfortunate to not get the win.
Shinsuke Yamanaka, Toshiyuki Igarashi to Make Title Defenses
November 3 will also see a pretty good card from Japan, as Shinsuke Yamanaka and Tosiyuki Igarashi will defend their world title belts in Sendai.
Yamanaka (16-0-2, 11 KO) will defend the WBC bantamweight title against longtime contender Tomas Rojas (39-13-1, 26 KO) of Mexico. Rojas is, of course, a former WBC super flyweight titleholder, and he's won three straight since his loss last year to Suriyan Sor Rungvisai in Thailand. None of those wins were big wins, but wins are wins, and he's got another chance to win a title belt.
Yamanaka is coming off of the best win of his career, an April decision victory over Vic Darchinyan.
In the co-feature, newly-crowned WBC flyweight titlist (and lineal champ) Toshiyuki Igarashi will defend his belt for the first time against Argentina's Nestor Narvaes. Igarashi (16-1-1, 10 KO) is a really quality fighter. I know nothing about Narvaes (19-0-2, 9 KO), but recent, fairly unknown Argentine fighters tend to go one of two ways in fights like this. They either get overwhelmed, or they turn out to be tough as nails.
Marco Antonio Rubio vs Carlos Baldomir on September 8
In a fight I couldn't really care less about, Marco Antonio Rubio (54-6-1, 47 KO) will try to continue padding his record against shot former welterweight champ Carlos Baldomir (49-14-6, 15 KO) in Mexico on September 8. Baldomir, 41, hasn't looked good in about five years, but you can't fault a guy for riding that Cinderella story as far as it will take him. If he'd never upset Zab Judah, would he be getting calls for fights like this in 2012?
Rubio, now 32, is one of those fake contenders who isn't really in the mix and will really never beat anyone who's particularly good, but he can win fights on this level and a little bit above it, he's got a good KO rate, and when matched against limited fighters, can be pretty fun to watch. His all-time best performance was in his loss to Chavez Jr in February of this year, for my money.
It's not really that I have anything against Rubio or even the tricks he uses to convince people he deserves title shots and big fights, by fighting weak opponents and building up win streaks, it's just that I know very well what sort of juice you can squeeze out of this lemon, and I don't feel particularly compelled to see him fight top guys, because he can't beat them, and I don't feel particularly compelled to see him fight guys like Baldomir or the inexperienced mediocre dudes he fights, because they can't beat him and are pretty much just overmatched from the get-go. There's a world where Rubio could be a really fun fighter, taking on guys exactly his level who are enjoyable to watch, but he doesn't venture into that territory very often.