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Azat Hovhannisyan-Franklin Manzanilla headlines September 5th Golden Boy card

Both men challenged Rey Vargas for the WBC super bantamweight title

Azat Hovhannisyan v Lolito Sonsona Photo by Tom Hogan/Golden Boy/Getty Images
Patrick Stumberg is a freelance writer for SB Nation, first joining the network in 2011 before linking up with Bad Left Hook in 2015.

In what could be an under-the-radar brawl for the ages, super bantamweight bruisers Azat Hovhannisyan and Franklin Manzanilla are set to headline a September 5th Golden Boy DAZN Thursday Night Fights card in Los Angeles. Despite the name, the event will air on and the Golden Boy Fight Nights Facebook page.

Both men are in the WBC top 15 at 122 pounds and successively (but not successfully) challenged Rey Vargas for the title in the last 15 months.

Hovhannisyan (17-3, 14 KO) punched his way into the fight with a knockout of Ronny Rios that’s since aged quite well, and he wound up giving Vargas arguably his most difficult defense to date. He enters this fight on the heels of three consecutive knockouts, all in five rounds or fewer.

Manzanilla (18-5, 17 KO) was a tune-up foe for mandatory challenger Julio Ceja who wound up flipping the script and breaking the former interim champ’s nose for a TKO. Having taken Ceja’s spot in line, he scored a flash knockdown on Vargas but ultimately wasn’t able to roughhouse his way to a win.

He was briefly set to fight Shakur Stevenson this year before withdrawing.

With the way these two fight, I figure we’ve got about a 50-50 chance of an absolute slugfest or a no contest due to clash of heads. Either way, definitely worth tuning in on a Thursday.

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