On March 28 in Tijuana, though, Arum is bringing out the guns in a major way.
The five-fight pay-per-view will feature the likes of Humberto Soto and Jose Luis Castillo, plus an exciting rematch for a 108-pound title.
WBC junior lightweight titlist Soto (46-7-2, 29 KO) has no opponent named yet, but every other name on the card is already matched up.
Diehard fans will be excited to hear that junior flyweights Cesar Canchila (27-1, 21 KO) and Giovanni Segura (19-1-1, 15 KO) will battle once more. Their first fight could have stolen the show on most pay-per-views as an opener, but was set as the main co-feature bout on the Cotto-Margarito undercard last July. With two uninspiring fights before it, Canchila and Segura ripped into each other to tepid crowd response, which was an utter shame. In Tijuana they will likely encounter rowdier fans, and it's a fight that richly deserves a second go-'round.
Ex-junior bantamweight titlist Fernando Montiel (38-2-1, 28 KO) has relinquished his 115-pound title to move up full-time to 118 pounds, and he won't be facing Eric Morel because of visa problems. But Montiel will still be in action, taking on Diego Silva (24-1-3, 12 KO) for the interim WBO bantamweight strap.
35-year old Castillo (57-9-1, 49 KO) will be back in action against 32-year old Antonio Diaz (45-5-1, 29 KO) in a fight that pits a couple of guys that have started sliding down the wrong side of the hill. Castillo beat Antonio's brother, Julio, in 2005, one fight before his epic loss to Diego Corrales.
Castillo was last seen by most of us in a one-sided losing effort to Sebastian Lujan in his welterweight debut last July, but he fought and beat a scrub named James Wayka last month. Diaz will be a much stiffer test. His recent schedule has been pretty damn soft and he didn't fight in 2006 or 2007, but he's technically on a six-fight winning streak. His last loss came in 2003. There's always the chance that with two guys looking for a payday the way these two will be, that sparks and blood could fly in abudance.
And Chavez, of course, will face Luciano Cuello in the main event. Bob Arum is titling the show "Tijuana Thunder," one week before Golden Boy's "Lightweight Lightning."
It's almost like these guys are putting together shows now instead of one-fight garbage. These two shows along with the Pavlik and Cotto comeback PPV next Saturday all have nothing to do with HBO, either, apart from HBO distributing the Golden Boy event. Hmmm...
Of course, none of the shows feature a single "big" fight either. Still, I think on a bare bones level I'm more excited for all three of these events than I was just about any PPV from 2008, which were almost exclusively one-trick ponies across the board.