It may have lost Juan Francisco Estrada vs. Kal Yafai, but Matchroom’s Super Bowl weekend DAZN show headlined by Demetrius Andrade vs. Luke Keeler still has quite some heft to it. In addition to Daniel Roman’s mandatory title defense against Murodjon Akhmadaliev, the Miami-based card will feature the finally official Tevin Farmer-Joseph Diaz Jr. clash that’s been in the works for ages.
NEW SHOW! #MiamiFightNight— Matchroom Boxing (@MatchroomBoxing) December 13, 2019
We're heading to Miami on Jan 30 for a massive World title triple-header!
@BooBooAndrade vs @luke_keeler
@TevinFarmer22 vs @JosephDiazJr
Daniel Roman vs Murodjion Akhmadaliev
On sale tomorrow pic.twitter.com/cJfikIbhQ3
Diaz (30-1, 15 KO) claimed to have accepted the fight almost exactly a month ago, only for Farmer (30-4-1, 6 KO) to assert that it was not a “done deal.” There were even recent rumors that negotiations were falling apart, but they’ve managed to right the ship and put the fight together. As I’ve said in all the other articles about this matchup, it’s a quality fight between two highly skilled fighters in need of a signature victory, and while Roman-Akhmadaliev will most likely steal the show, this figures to be a quality clash.
Diaz is 4-0 since an unsuccessful bid for Gary Russell Jr.’s featherweight title, Farmer unbeaten in the last seven years and coming up on the fifth defense of the title he claimed by beating Billy Dib.
Matchroom’s press release also features some quotes from the other four fighters involved.
“I’m looking forward to getting back in the ring again finally! It’s a great opportunity to show the world my talents and to be part of Super Bowl weekend in Miami is incredible,” said Andrade. “Miami is a beautiful city and I’m looking to once again showing that I’m the best 160-pound fighter in the world. It’s me again!
“There are major fights for me in the Middleweight division,” Andrade continued. “Those are the fights I want and I’ve been very vocal about it. At the end of the day, I just need to keep winning. They can’t avoid me forever. On January 30, we have to take care of business against Luke Keeler. He’s tough and he’s coming to fight, which will make for a great night of action for the fans in Miami and everyone else watching around the world on DAZN.”
“Demetrius is a great fighter and I understand I’ll be written off as a huge underdog but it’s exactly how I like it, there isn’t a drop of pressure on me,” said Keeler. “It feels surreal in a way but at the same time, I’ve always visualized it so in a way I expected this opportunity to come. Again, there is no pressure on me at all. I’ll have nerves like every fight but I’m going to enjoy every moment, bounce to the ring and pull off the upset.
“It’s a life changing fight and winning brings life-changing paydays but I would’ve taken this fight for free to be in the position that comes with winning,” stated Keeler. “It puts me right up there for fights with Gennadiy Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez.”
“Our goal all along was to have this fight in 2019, but injuries happen so we had to be cautious and wait a little longer than we wanted,” said Roman. “I’ve been back in the gym with no limitations and I can say I feel fresh and motivated to defend my title once again.
“This is the longest break I’ve had between fights in a long time so it’s only natural for me to be anxious to get back in the ring. Akhmadaliev presents a strong challenge and I know that I’ll be getting his best shot, but I’ve been down this road before and everyone knows my track record in world title fights.”
“I am very glad that Daniel Roman took this fight,” said Akhmadaliev. “I know that we are both warriors and this will be a real war! Don’t miss this fight!”