Boxing had a mildly eventful weekend, with a couple of world titles up for grabs and a running gag of a pay-per-view from Salt Lake City, but there were no upsets of which to speak.
In Kobe, Japan, Chris John retained the WBA featherweight title with an easy victory over sub-standard challenger Zaiki Takemoto. Well, sub-standard may not quite ring true; John hasn't fought a notable opponent, really, since his controversial decision win over Juan Manuel Marquez in March 2006. John is a really good fighter, and I believe in his record to some degree. But he turned down a bout with Rocky Juarez to take on Takemoto. There likely was more money in it, but the featherweights badly need a big fight. The division is getting lost in the shuffle. John is the consensus No. 1 man in the division -- he has to be the guy to make it happen. John is now 40-0-1.
IBF middleweight king Arthur Abraham beat Khoren Gevor via knockout at 2:41 of the 11th round, improving to 24-0. On the undercard, Mads Larsen won against Nader Hamdan, and Michel Trabant and Giammario Grassellini went to a technical draw after four rounds.
On Friday Night Fights, Jason Litzau scored a second-round TKO against Emmanuel Lucero. "The American Boy" has moved from super featherweight down to featherweight, and if that's any indication of what we can expect from him at 126 pounds, it looks like a good move. Lucero has fought five notable opponents in the last four years -- Litzau, Pacquiao, Juarez, Ponce de Leon, Pereira -- and lost every time, four of them by early knockout.
Jorge Solis returned to 126 pounds, as well, rebounding from his loss to Manny Pacquiao with a fourth-round TKO of Santiago Allione.
And, finally, in that big Utah pay-per-view, David Tua, Jeremy Williams and Roman Greenberg were all victorious, as expected. We never reported it here -- because it was basically a big "well, no shit?" type of moment -- but Joe Mesi pulled out with a back injury about a week prior to the event. Tua beat Saul Montana in the first round, Williams via eight-round unanimous decision against Gary Gomez, and Greenberg in the ninth over Damon Reed.
I don't mean to be so hard on that show. I hope they met whatever number they were hoping for, and I especially root for David Tua's comeback, because I always really liked him, and I still think you have to give him at least a very minor puncher's chance against even a Wlad Klitschko. But $24.95 for that show? Who would really pay that?