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Provodnikov and Andrade having trouble finding opponents

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Despite their success in the ring, Ruslan Provodnikov and Demetrius Andrade continue to have trouble finding opponents and getting back on HBO.

Doug Pensinger

Ruslan Provodnikov and Demetrius Andrade both made their names by fighting and winning titles on HBO. Provodnikov almost scored the upset of 2013 versus Timothy Bradley in a fight of the year candidate. Later in 2013, Provodnikov beat down Mike Alvarado to lift the WBO light welterweight belt. Provodnikov lost the belt to Chris Algieri in June via split decision. Algieri will fight Pacquiao for the WBO welterweight title in November, while Provodnikov is stuck looking for an opponent to fight in Russia.

Provodnikov's promoter, Artie Pelullo reached out to Top Rank in the hopes of securing a rematch with Timothy Bradley, or a fight with Jessie Vargas, or Brandon Rios or Diego Chaves. Top Rank declined all of those fights.

Andrade's November 2013 HBO premiere saw him claim the vacant WBO light middleweight title by winning a split decision over previously undefeated Vanes Martirosyan. In June 2014, Andrade defended his title by TKOing Brian Rose. Martirosyan will fight Willie Nelson on Showtime on October 4. Andrade has yet to secure a fall fight.

In order to expand the last of potential opponents for Andrade, his promotional company, Star Boxing, has petitioned the WBO to allow Andrade to fight for the middleweight belt that Peter Quillin vacated recently. If allowed to do so, Andrade would square off against mandatory challenger Matt Korobov for the title.

This is not without precedent, as Mikey Garcia lost the WBO featherweight title because he failed to make weight, and then petitioned the WBO to make Garcia the mandatory challenger for Rocky Martinez's WBO junior lightweight belt. The WBO allowed it, and Garcia knocked out Martinez to win the belt.

With the boxing press and audience fixated on Mayweather-Pacquiao- a fight that doesn't seem close to happening any time soon, if ever, perhaps a little attention to Provodnikov and Andrade- two exciting, high risk/ low reward fighters, would go a long way.