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Rigondeaux vs Darchinyan rumored for later this year

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Guillermo Rigondeaux may face Vic Darchinyan in the fall, a rumored matchup that shouldn't surprise anyone after Darchinyan's recent signing with Top Rank.

USA TODAY Sports is reporting that a fall fight between Guillermo Rigondeaux and Vic Darchinyan is a possibility, as Rigondeaux's manager Gary Hyde says the fight will happen in September or October.

Rigondeaux (12-0, 8 KO) soundly defeated Nonito Donaire in April to unify the WBA and WBO super bantamweight titles, and take his seat at the pound-for-pound table. The 32-year-old Cuban amateur legend has fully arrived as a professional, with his win over Donaire silencing any remaining skeptics. While he may not be the most exciting fighter, he's proven his ability, and no one doubts that anymore.

Darchinyan (39-5-1, 28 KO) has won two straight fights, and recently signed with Top Rank, who co-promote Rigondeaux. The 37-year-old Armenian veteran finally made it to HBO last year (having previously been a mainstay during the Shawtime era of Showtime boxing), beating prospect Luis Orlando Del Valle over 10 rounds. He made his Top Rank debut on May 11 in Texas, easily beating veteran Javier Gallo.

The fight being possible -- or even probable -- is no surprise. There are only so many available fighters at 122 pounds for Rigondeaux, whose fights pretty much have to be on HBO now, and Darchinyan still has name value for a 122-pound fighter. The two straight wins don't hurt, either.

But will it be competitive? That's another story. Though he's often fared pretty well, Darchinyan is 0-4 in world title fights over 115 pounds, failing each time he fought for a bantamweight title. Now another weight class up, he remains the same fearless, strong fighter he's always been, but that hasn't resulted in a win over a top fighter above super flyweight to date.