WBO super featherweight titleholder Masayuki Ito was expected to face Jamel Herring next, and that’s exactly what we’re getting. Top Rank officially announced the May 25 fight, which will main event on ESPN, with Jose Pedraza facing Antonio Lozada Jr in the co-feature.
Memorial Day Weekend - The Junior Lightweight Championship is on the line as Masayuki Ito and Jamel Herring face off May 25 on @ESPN. ALSO: Jose Pedraza takes on Antonio Lozada Jr. pic.twitter.com/5LosdthBqn— Top Rank Boxing (@trboxing) April 25, 2019
Ito (25-1-1, 13 KO) won his title last July against Christopher Diaz, winning a decision in Kissimmee, Florida, when the belt was vacant. He has defended once, beating Evgeny Chuprakov via seventh round TKO in Tokyo on Dec. 30.
The 28-year-old Ito will now return to Kissimmee to face the 33-year-old Herring (19-2, 10 KO), a former U.S. Olympian who started his pro career 15-0 before losing two of three in 2016-2017, dropping fights to Denis Shafikov and Ladarius Miller.
Since then, Herring has worked his way down to 130 pounds from 135, and he looked good making that weight last September for a win over John Moralde. Ito is a better fighter than Moralde, but Herring busting ass to move down a weight class in search of better results is quite admirable. This might be the one and only world title shot he’s going to get, so he’ll look to make it count.
Pedraza (25-2, 12 KO) is a former titleholder at both 130 and 135, and his only losses have come to Gervonta Davis in 2017 and Vasiliy Lomachenko last December. Before the fight with Lomachenko, he had beaten Ray Beltran to win the WBO lightweight title in August.
Lozada (40-2-1, 34 KO) is a 29-year-old Mexican fighter best known for his March 2018 win over Felix Verdejo, a 10th round stoppage where Lozada was trailing on two of three cards going into that final round. In his last outing, he went to a disappointing eight-round draw with Hector Ambriz.
The prelim portion of the show, which will stream on ESPN+ as always, currently has the following lineup:
- Jeyvier Cintron (10-0, 5 KO) vs Koki Eto (24-4-1, 19 KO), super flyweights, 10 rounds
- Yomar Alamo (16-0, 12 KO) vs TBA, junior welterweights, 10 rounds
- Adam Lopez (12-1, 5 KO) vs Jean Carlos Rivera (15-1, 10 KO), featherweights, 10 rounds
- Steven Nelson (13-0, 10 KO) vs Victor Darocha (8-4-1, 6 KO), light heavyweights, 8 rounds
- Antonio Vargas (10-0, 4 KO) vs Jose Maria Cardenas (16-4, 13 KO), bantamweights, 8 rounds
- Edgar Berlanga (10-0, 10 KO) vs Gyorgy Varju (7-4, 4 KO), middleweights, 8 rounds
- Henry Lebron (8-0, 6 KO) vs Luis Lizarraga Jr (6-12-1, 2 KO), super featherweights, 6 rounds