Friday, Nov. 22
ESPN+, 10:30 am ET, Jack Catterall vs Timo Schwarzkopf, Vijender Singh vs Charles Adamu, Muhammad Waseem vs Ganigan Lopez, Thomas Patrick Ward vs Martin Casillas. Catterall is staying busy as he has a mandatory slot at 140 for one of Jose Ramirez’s titles, Singh is a 34-year-old former Olympian from India who has done a good job convincing boxing promoters that he’s serious about his pro career, Waseem is a good flyweight who gave Moruti Mthalane a pretty good challenge in 2018, and Ward is a guy whose career was almost picking up some momentum early this year with a great ShoBox showing, before he signed with MTK and his competition mysteriously was scaled back pretty drastically. BLH will have live coverage.
ESPN+, 2:30 pm ET, MTK Golden Contract Tournament: Junior Welterweights. Of the three MTK Golden Contract tournaments, this is the second to get kicked off and, on paper, the best lineup, at least in my opinion. Competing in the opening round (matchups TBA) will be Ohara Davies, Tyrone McKenna, Zhankosh Turarov, Mohamed Mimoune, Anthony Yigit, Darren Surtees, Logan Yoon, and Lewis Benson. BLH will have live coverage.
Saturday, Nov. 23
DAZN, 2:00 pm ET, Callum Smith vs John Ryder, Craig Glover vs Chris Billam-Smith, James Tennyson vs Craig Evans, Anthony Fowler vs Harry Scarff. Not the biggest undercard, but Smith-Ryder is a solid main event if not expected to be particularly competitive. Smith needs to stay active, Ryder’s the mandatory challenger, and it should draw well in Liverpool. The fight had to happen eventually. BLH will have live coverage.
FS2, 7:00 pm ET, Leduan Barthelemy vs Eduardo Ramirez 2. Barthelemy and Ramirez fought to a draw in Sept. 2017, and now they lock it up again on the Wilder-Ortiz 2 prelims on FS2. Prospects Vito Mielnicki Jr and Omar Juarez will also be in action. BLH will have live coverage.
DAZN, 7:30 pm ET, Andrew Cancio vs Rene Alvarado 2, Xu Can vs Manny Robles III, Rashidi Ellis vs Eddie Gomez 2. A couple of rematches, including Cancio-Alvarado for Cancio’s WBA “world” title at 130. Xu Can against Manny Robles III is not a third fight, Manny Robles III is the third Manny Robles. That’s why I’m using “2” instead of “II” all over the place here, but I fear it’s still confusing. Xu is defending his WBA “world” title at 126 — he’s on a good roll and Robles is a good but flawed prospect. Our focus is obviously on the Wilder-Ortiz card, but we’ll have a live thread up for this one, too. BLH will have live coverage.
UFC Fight Pass, 8:00 pm ET, Peter Manfredo Jr vs Melvin Russell. This CES Boxing show from Rhode Island features Providence’s Manfredo, a longtime local favorite who hasn’t fought since a 2016 draw with Vladine Biosse. He hasn’t won a fight since 2013 and unless you’re a Rhode Islander, you probably haven’t seen him fight since he lost to Julio Cesar Chavez Jr in 2011. Manfredo’s turning 39 later this month. This could be a farewell, it could be the start of a new mid-level run in his home area, or he could be seeing if he thinks he has it in him to look for one more big opportunity.
FOX PPV, 9:00 pm ET, Deontay Wilder vs Luis Ortiz 2, Leo Santa Cruz vs Miguel Flores, Luis Nery vs Emmanuel Rodriguez, Brandon Figueroa vs Julio Ceja. The marquee event of the weekend, obviously. Wilder-Ortiz 2 isn’t necessarily what anyone wanted, but it’s not a bad fight — Ortiz is still a contender and can crack, and he gave Wilder a hell of a battle in 2018. If Deontay wins again, then we turn our attention to the proposed rematch with Tyson Fury in February. Santa Cruz-Flores was originally going to happen early this year; it was a crap fight at 126 and it’ll be a crap fight at 130. Nery-Rodriguez is a meeting of top 10 bantamweights, and Figueroa-Ceja is a solid next fight for Figueroa, a rising star at 122. BLH will have live coverage.