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Ring of Fire: Beibut Shumenov and Alexander Dimitrenko Set Up Lackluster Title Fights

Shumenov Returns on July 29

WBA light heavyweight titlist Beibut Shumenov (11-1, 7 KO) returns on July 29 in Las Vegas to face Danny Santiago (31-4-1, 19 KO) with Golden Boy helping to back the bout. Shumenov had recently been promoted in the States by Goossen Tutor, but that fell apart into litigation. The fight will headline that night's Solo Boxeo Tecate on Telefutura.

The good news is that the exciting and ambitious Shumenov, 27, will be back on TV. The bad news is that Santiago is an extremely weak title challenger, approved because he's ranked No. 15 by the WBA for whatever reason. Santiago is 38 years old, he's short at 5'8", and he's got little by way of resume. He may be best remembered as the guy picked out of thin air to replace Danny Green against Antonio Tarver in December 2007, a lousy fight Showtime was forced to televise. He was also scheduled to fight Roy Jones Jr last year before hat fell through. He's been stopped by Zsolt Erdei in the past as well, and his best win probably came against Elvir Muriqi.

"I'm very excited to be fighting in my adopted hometown, Las Vegas, where I won the world title," Shumenov said via press release. "I've lived in Las Vegas for a few years and I've wanted to defend my title belts here since I first won them. I have a lot of respect for my opponent, Danny Santiago, who has a lot of experience in big fights. In addition to my world title fight, we'll also be showcasing world-class fighters, along with local Las Vegas favorites. This promotion will not only feature great boxing but Vegas-style entertainment, too."

Dimitrenko vs Sprott for August

In another weak title bout, European heavyweight titleholder Alexander Dimitrenko (31-1, 21 KO) will face Michael Sprott (36-16, 17 KO) in August. Dimitrenko won the European title last year and brutally knocked out Albert Sosnowski in March. Sprott, meanwhile, mostly competes in Prizefighter these days, as he won a tournament last October, fought a four-rounder in March, and then lost in the opening round of the most recent heavyweight Prizefighter on May 7 against Tye Fields. The 36-year-old Sprott really doesn't have a whole lot left, and hasn't done much since knocking out Audley Harrison in 2007. Dimitrenko vs Sprott will take place on August 19 or 20.

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