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Ortiz-Hooker, Beterbiev-Deines, Okolie-Glowacki, more: Boxing schedule and fight times for March 18-20, 2021

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Plenty of action coming this week, including BKFC 16, Ring City USA, and much more.

Tom Hogan/Golden Boy/Getty Images | Valery Sharifulin/TASS via Getty Images | Paul Harding/PA Images via Getty Images

Thursday, March 18

Twitch, 6:30 pm ET, Ring City USA prelims. The main fight on this portion of the Ring City show will be Maricela Cornejo vs Alma Ibarra, and we’ll also see former 108-pound champ Angel Acosta face Gilberto Mendoza, plus Edwin Valentin vs Hector Marengo. BLH will have live coverage.

NBCSN and Twitch, 9:00 pm ET, Alberto Machado vs Angel Fierro. Ring City’s main card is from Salinas, Puerto Rico, this time out, with a change in the main event, which was originally Machado vs Hector Tanajara and was, frankly, more attractive and interesting on paper that way. But we’ll be here anyway, the shows have all been fun so far and Fierro gets an opportunity to surprise some people and make a mark at 135, facing a former 130-pound titleholder. The co-feature is Jose Martinez vs Israel Gonzalez in a 10-round bantamweight fight, and there’s a light heavyweight bout between Joe Ward and Marco Delgado, too; don’t ignore Ireland’s Ward, who lost his pro debut on a bad knee injury against Delgado in Oct. 2019. He’s a legit fighter, and he just got back in the ring in December with a pair of wins in Mexico. BLH will have live coverage.

Friday, March 19

DAZN, 2:00 pm ET, Ortiz vs Hooker weigh-ins. Underpants, scales, hope nothing goes wrong! BLH will have live coverage.

ESPN+, 3:00 pm ET, Karim Guerfi vs Lee McGregor. This fight’s been postponed about 32 times (that might be a slight exaggeration), but it looks like it’s finally happening, with Guerfi’s European bantamweight title on the line in the main event. McGregor’s a good prospect, and we’ll have something of a better idea how good with this fight, because Guerfi is very good at the European level. The streaking Maxi Hughes will face Paul Hyland Jr in the co-feature for the vacant British lightweight title. BLH will have live coverage.

BKTV, 8:00 pm ET, BKFC 16: Garcia vs Elmore. The main event between Leonard Garcia and Joe Elmore could be really explosive, and we’ll also see the BKFC debut of 46-year-old DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley, who faces lightweight contender Reggie Barnett Jr, plus much more, of course. BLH will have live coverage.

Saturday, March 20

ESPN and ESPN+, 1:00 pm ET, Artur Beterbiev vs Adam Deines. ESPN’s schedule have the ESPN+ stream starting at 1 pm ET, and the “main card” portion starting on ESPN at 3 pm ET, where I think they have a two-hour window for the show because there’s live college basketball right after. To be clear, the full card will stream on ESPN+, but the “main card” also airs on ESPN. But there will be time for you to catch this main event and the DAZN main event (Okolie-Glowacki), which figures to go on around 5-6 pm ET. Beterbiev is expected to roll here, frankly, but he’s had a lot of injuries over the years and he’s not getting younger, either. BLH will have live coverage.

DAZN, 3:00 pm ET, Lawrence Okolie vs Krzysztof Glowacki. Okolie goes for his first world title, facing former titlist Glowacki for the vacant WBO cruiserweight belt. Undercard fights here include, Chris Billam-Smith vs Vasil Ducar, Anthony Fowler returning against Jorge Fortea, and Joe Cordina taking on Faroukh Kourbanov. The plan will be to do the Beterbiev card, then jump over to live coverage for what’s left of this show, where the main event is the key thing of interest. BLH will have live coverage.

DAZN, 9:00 pm ET, Vergil Ortiz Jr vs Maurice Hooker. DAZN also have a Saturday night card, and a pretty good main event for it, as Golden Boy get back in action with top welterweight prospect Ortiz headlining against former 140-pound titlist Hooker. This is another pretty good foot forward for Ortiz on paper, but if he gets through this — especially if he bulls through it like he has everyone else — then Golden Boy are gonna be running out of acceptable “steps” for Ortiz pretty much here, and they might have to consider seeing if a Terence Crawford fight is available, even though “Bud” would be an enormous jump from this level. That or maybe get some type of WBC, IBF, or WBA eliminator order. Eliminators are a great way for promoters to have someone tread water. “Well, it’s an eliminator,” we’ll say. “Gotta do it. Not (heavily favored fighter)’s fault (sanctioning body) ordered him to fight a nobody or a regional guy.” The co-feature here has Pablo Cesar Cano, and Seniesa Estrada will challenge Anabel Ortiz for the WBA 105-pound title. BLH will have live coverage.