Brick was going to try to get to the schedule this week, but I decided to run it early so that we could properly alert everyone to the rare Wednesday TV action we'll be covering, plus early notice of an extra fight on Saturday airing on ESPN3.com. Here's the full lineup.
Tuesday, March 22
Channel 3 (Thailand), 3 am EDT, Denkaosan Kaovichit v. Panca Silaban, Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym v. Vicky Tahumil. More or less get-busy fights for Kaovichit and Poonsawat. Kaovichit (51-3-1, 21 KO) was shredded in the first round by Luis Concepcion -- who really might be the world's best flyweight -- last October, and this is his second fight back. Poonsawat (42-2, 29 KO) is also in his second fight back from last year's loss to Ryol Li Lee. Tahumil and Silaban aren't total bums, but they're lined up to lose. Tahumil, an Indonesian, was out of the sport from 2007 into 2010, and has lost four in a row overall, all by stoppage.
Channel 7 (Thailand), ? am EDT, Tabtimdaeng Na Rachawat v. Hendry Barongsay. I tried to figure out the time for this one, but no dice.
Wednesday, March 23
Sky Sports, 4 pm EDT, Prizefighter: Super Middleweights. The 168-pounders are in action in the latest edition of the always-fun Prizefighter tournament. For those unfamiliar with the concept, eight fighters enter a one-night tournament in bouts of three, three-minute rounds. First round matchups are set and are as follows: Carl Dilks (14-3, 5 KO) v. Jahmaine Smyle (3-1-1, 3 KO) ... Robin Reid (40-6-1, 27 KO) v. Tobias Webb (4-0-1, 0 KO) ... Joe Ainscough (7-2-1, 1 KO) v. Wayne Reed (5-1, 2 KO) ... Patrick J. Maxwell (16-3-1, 11 KO) v. Rocky Fielding (3-0, 0 KO). I know that doesn't look like the most enticing way to spend your time, but it's always about the format, and there has been more than one Prizefighter surprise winner in the past. Reid is continuing a comeback he started a week after his 40th birthday in February, after retiring following a 2007 loss to up-and-coming Carl Froch. I'm rooting for him, and always will simply because he was on the short end of the most disgraceful refereeing job that immediately comes to mind in his so-called "loss" to Sven Ottke. Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of this event.
Friday, March 25
Channel 7 (Thailand), ? am EDT, Pongsaklek Wonjongkam v. TBA. I tried to figure out the time for this one, but no dice. This is a non-title fight for the flyweight champ, whatever it winds up being. They've got no problem picking someone off the streets to fight established stars in Thailand, though.
Fox Sports 1 (Australia), 5 am EDT, Ryan Waters v. Gairy St. Clair. Waters is 33 years old and was stopped in 10 by Anthony Mundine last September, which was his last go in the ring. He's a pure domestic level fighter in Australia, the kind of guy Mundine has built an ego beating. St. Clair is a veteran who turned pro in 1994 in his home country of Guyana, and has fought out of Australia for years now. This is going to be contested at 154 pounds, and if you've ever seen St. Clair, you know he's about as much a 154-pound fighter as Steve Forbes was. He's been in against and lost to the likes of Diego Corrales, Vivian Harris, Malcolm Klassen, Cassius Baloyi, Amir Khan, Lenny Zappavigna and Jackson Asiku. In his last four fights counting this one, he will have fought at, in order, 140, 126, 140 and 154. Eat your heart out, Pacquiao.
ESPN2 and ESPN3.com, 10 pm EDT, Erislandy Lara v. Carlos Molina, Yudel Jhonson v. Richard Gutierrez. The Cubans are back again this weekend, starting with this card from the Cosmopolitan Resort in Las Vegas. Lara has stagnated as a prospect and really should be doing something more worthwhile than fighting Molina, who has a nice win streak but hasn't fought since June 2009, which you might as well use as a reason to set your watch to his late withdrawal from this fight. Jhonson (9-0, 6 KO) is taking what appears to be a tougher fight in the same division, matched against veteran Gutierrez, who has been in the ring with Joshua Clottey, Alfredo Angulo, Antwone Smith, Luis Carlos Abregu and Zaurbek Baysangurov. He's also lost to all of them. Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of this event.
Cadena Tres (Mexico), 11 pm EDT, Ruben Tamayo v. Jesus Navarro. A couple of southpaws fighting at 122 pounds. Tamayo lost his last fight by six-round shutout to a guy who came in 1-3, and Navarro has dropped a few against similar competition.
Telefutura, 11:30 pm EDT, Antonio Escalante v. Alejandro Perez, Manuel Avila v. Frank Gutierrez. Escalante is coming off of a really horrible ass-kicking at the hands of Daniel Ponce de Leon, a fight where he tried and wasn't even close to good enough. His effort got him flattened in the third round, but Perez is no Ponce de Leon and is being lined up as a rust-shaker for Escalante, who will fight in California for this one instead of his home base in El Paso. The co-feature is a total showcase fight. Manuel "Tino" Avila is an 18-year-old prospect out of Fairfield, California, managed by Cameron Dunkin. He'll be taking his third pro fight, and second straight in his hometown. Gutierrez comes in 2-8-2 (1 KO). Bad Left Hook will try to have live coverage of this event.
Saturday, March 26
ESPN3.com, Noon EDT, Dmitry Pirog v. Javier Maciel. Here comes ESPN3 picking up a fight that...well, they picked up a fight! Pirog made a lot of instant fans with his July 2010 knockout "upset" of Golden Boy prospect Daniel Jacobs, but has sat on the sidelines since then. Maciel is an 18-1 (12 KO) fighter out of Argentina, who will be making his first trip out of the country on business as he heads to Russia as the obvious underdog. For some reason I've been getting the gut feeling lately to cease counting the chickens with Pirog. Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of this event.
SuperSport 5 (South Africa), 2 pm EDT, Thomas Oosthuizen v. Evert Bravo, Isaac Chilemba v. Vikapita Meroro, Flo Simba v. Fernando de Almeida. Oosthuizen gets a crack at some belt against Bravo, Chilemba returns quickly after winning on Friday Night Fights in February, and heavyweight Flo Simba is being hyped like the next big thing in South Africa.
Sky Sports 2, 4 pm EDT, Denton Vassell v. Bethuel Ushona, Matt Askin v. Neil Dawson. The main event here is a good one. Vassell (16-0, 9 KO) is a 26-year-old prospect with Hatton Promotions who won the Commonwealth welterweight title last April against Lee Purdy. Now he faces Ushona (23-0, 8 KO), a 29-year-old Namibian. Vassell is the favorite and will have home court and all that, but on paper it's one of those sleeper matchups. The co-feature is between a couple of 9-0 cruiserweights, the prospect being "Assassin" Askin, a 22-year-old also with the Hatton stable who stands 6'4". Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of this event.
TyC Sports (Argentina), 8 pm EDT, Claudio Alfredo Olmedo v. Guillermo de Jesus Paz.
HBO, 9:45 pm EDT, Yuriorkis Gamboa v. Jorge Solis, Mikey Garcia v. Matt Remillard. I'm personally far more excited about the co-feature, which pits featherweight prospects Garcia (24-0, 20 KO) and Remillard (23-0, 13 KO) in a ten-rounder. The main event does little for me. Solis is a pretty good fighter, but will be dropping back down to featherweight for the first time since July 2009, when he had a foul-filled whirlwind brawl against Cristobal Cruz, losing a decision. Solis is probably best-known for being a Pacquiao in-between opponent back in 2007, when Manny needed to do something between his third fight with Erik Morales and his second fight with Marco Antonio Barrera. Don't be surprised if Gamboa isn't exactly electrifying in this one. But then don't be surprised if he is, I guess. There's also an interesting fight between Teon Kenendy and Jorge Diaz on the off-TV portion of the show, and Tom Zbikowski is going to fight again, too, though HBO has the decency to not waste our time with it. Bad Left Hook will have live coverage of this event.
Televisa (Mexico), 11:30 pm EDT, Leo Santa Cruz v. Stephane Jamoye, Marco Antonio Periban v. Oney Valdez. A co-promotion by Saul Alvarez's Canelo Promotions and Golden Boy. Periban might be the most interesting guy here. He's a 26-year-old super middleweight prospect who stopped Darnell Boone in one round, and Boone has a great chin, plus he stopped Jason Naugler in five, Naugler being the only guy to go the distance with David Lemieux so far. Santa Cruz (14-0-1, 6 KO) is the prospect in the other fight, with Jamoye (20-2, 10 KO) his opponent. Those who pay attention to the UK scene will recognize the Belgian's name from a January loss to Jamie McDonnell, and his other defeat came against Tomoki Kameda.