The Showtime pay-per-view undercard for the March 8 show headlined by Canelo Alvarez vs Alfredo Angulo has been finalized, and there are some really good potential action fights on the bill. Here's a quick rundown.
Leo Santa Cruz (26-0-1, 15 KO) will defend the WBC super bantamweight title against Cristian Mijares (49-7-2, 24 KO), a crafty veteran who has won a pair of tune-up fights following a debatable split decision loss to Victor Terrazas in April 2013. Santa Cruz, 25, was last seen on December 14, beating Cesar Seda handily on the Broner-Maidana card. He went 3-0 last year, including wins over Alexander Munoz and Terrazas. Mijares, who knows his way around the ring and is a smart fighter, may be his toughest stylistic challenge yet, but Santa Cruz will be the heavy favorite.
Also defending a world title will be Carlos Molina (22-5-2, 6 KO), as he'll put his IBF junior midleweight belt against up-and-coming contender Jermall Charlo (17-0, 13 KO). Molina's title winning effort against Ishe Smith last September was textbook Molina, grinding out a decision over 12 rounds. He's a good fighter, very intelligent, dirty when he needs to be, and he'll stall action any time he can to frustrate opponents. Charlo is a better physical specimen or whatever, but Molina has proven his ability many times over. Charlo is 23 and has faced nobody like this. It's a good, risky fight for the youngster.
In a lightweight bout, Texas action star Omar Figueroa (22-0-1, 17 KO) will face Canelo Alvarez's older brother Ricardo (23-2-3, 14 KO) in a 12-round bout for the interim WBC belt. Anyone who saw Ricardo Alvarez get a gift from Texas judges in December against East Coast club fighter Rod Salka can probably guess that Figueroa should win this one, but it is a totally different style matchup, to be fair. Salka boxed and picked his spots, and Alvarez was too slow and looked fairly clueless a lot of the time. Figueroa's right there to be hit all night, though of course he's also throwing a hurricane of punches.
Off pay-per-view, Jorge Linares (35-3, 23 KO) will do his best to not get knocked out by Nihito Arakawa (24-3-1, 16 KO). That's a potentially very exciting fight that I hope we see pop up on SHO Extreme before the PPV.