In a rare case of too much of a good thing, it looks as though there’ll be two solid cards competing for your attention on April 25th. While Naoya Inoue vs. John Riel Casimero headlines a three-fight ESPN+ card in Las Vegas, DAZN reportedly has its own tripleheader in store. According to Mike Coppinger, the previously announced WBO super welterweight title fight between Patrick Teixeira and Brian Castano will serve as the co-main event for an Indio, CA card headlined by Sergey Kovalev vs. Sullivan Barrera. Francisco Salazar also reports that light flyweight champion Felix Alvarado will make his Golden Boy debut against former minimumweight titlist DeeJay Kriel.
Kovalev (34-4-1, 29 KO) vs. Barrera (22-3, 14 KO) will take place at a 180-pound catchweight; Kovalev trainer Buddy McGirt recently claimed that “The Krusher” would continue his career at cruiserweight, but a source tells TASS that Kovalev has “no plans at the moment regarding the change of his weight category.”
Either way, this is no cakewalk for the former division king, who’s presently embroiled in scandal after scandal. Though Barrera is 38, tends to get dropped once per fight, and is coming off of a loss to Jesse Hart, he’s as tough and nasty as they come at 175. Another flat performance from Kovalev could easily result in a second consecutive defeat.
The co-main, which we’ve discussed before, is easily the best fight on the card and one of the best of the weekend behind Inoue-Casimero. Teixeira (31-1, 22 KO) is coming off of a huge win over Carlos Adames and Castano (16-0-1, 12 KO) is an all-action bruiser with the skills to match.
Alvarado (35-2, 30 KO), who signed with GBP last week, is in the midst of a 17-0 (15 KO) run dating back to 2014. He bulldozed Randy Petalcorin for the vacant IBF title in 2018 and successfully defended it with a decision over Reiya Konishi last May, but was forced out of what would have been an amazing unification fight with Ken Shiro due to illness.
Kriel (16-1-1, 8 KO) isn’t Shiro, but the South African is a legitimate challenger. He won 105-pound gold with a decision over Carlos Licona last year, then elected to move up in weight after an underwhelming purse bid with mandatory challenger Sammy Salva.