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Canelo vs Yildirim: Julio Cesar Martinez to face McWilliams Arroyo on undercard

Arroyo is Martinez’s mandatory challenger.

Juan Francisco Estrada v Carlos Cuadras - WBC Super-Flyweight Championship Photo by Jaime Lopez/Jam Media/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.

After a thoroughly frustrating 2020, flyweight mauler Julio Cesar Martinez will return to action in a major spotlight. ESPN’s Salvador Rodriguez reports that “Rey” will defend his WBC title against mandatory challenger McWilliams Arroyo on the February 27th Canelo Alvarez-Avni Yildirim DAZN show.

As mentioned when the WBC ordered it last week, Martinez (17-1, 13 KO) and Arroyo (20-4, 15 KO) were all set to meet last August before “Rey” withdrew due to illness in his first of three canceled fights that year. Maximino Flores tested positive for COVID in October, leaving Martinez to beat down Moises Calleros, and another illness scuttled a December bout with Francisco Rodriguez Jr.

Arroyo, for his part, ends a layoff that dates back to 2019 and sports an upset of Carlos Cuadras in his last five appearances.

Let’s hope this portends a much busier 2021 for Martinez, who’s among the most entertaining and active champions in the sport.

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