Showtime’s May 13 tripleheader is officially set, with Alberto Puello defending his WBA 140 lb title against Rolando Romero in the main event.
The undercard will see Rances Barthelemy face Omar Juarez in a 10-round bout, and the opener will be a 12-round WBA eliminator between Batyr Akhmedov and Kenneth Sims Jr, both of those fights also at 140.
The previously-reported card included Gary Antuanne Russell vs Kent Cruz, but that’s not happening, at least on this card.
Puello (21-0, 10 KO) won the vacant WBA title last August against Akhmedov, winning a split decision.
Romero (14-1, 12 KO) is coming up from lightweight and coming off of a sensational knockout loss to Gervonta Davis last May, but he is one of the most polarizing fighters in the sport, and for whatever reason, people care about what he’s doing, so he gets a big opportunity.
Barthelemy (29-2-1, 15 KO) is a former titlist at 130 and 135. Following a mind-numbingly boring fight with Robert Easter Jr in 2019, which ended in a draw, Barthelemy has gone 2-1, beating All Rivera and Gustavo David Vittori before a controversial stoppage loss to Gary Antuanne Russell last July. At 37, the Cuban will be facing an opponent 14 years his junior in Juarez (14-1, 5 KO), who has won three in a row after a loss to All Rivera in 2021, but he hasn’t really impressed against Ryan Karl or Austin Dulay in his last two.
Akhmedov (9-2, 8 KO) being thrust right back into an eliminator probably doesn’t need to happen, but for some reason that’s how boxing works these days. He’s 2-2 in his last four. Sims (19-2-1, 7 KO) has won six straight fights, including a win over Elvis Rodriguez in 2021. He’s had a couple of losses, but when he’s on his game — which he has been — he’s a good boxer.