Canelo to fight Chavez Jr. on May 6
In an curious bit of matchmaking, two-division world champion Canelo Álvarez (48-1-1, 34 KOs) will take on former WBC World Middleweight Champion Julio César Chávez, Jr. (50-2-1, 32 KOs) on Cinco de Mayo weekend, Saturday, May 6, in a 12-round battle to be contested at a maximum 164.5 pounds. The event will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View.
"I'm excited to announce my fight against Julio César Chávez, Jr. and confirm that I will be prepared, like I've been throughout my career, to give a great fight," said two-division World Champion Canelo Álvarez. "I want to remind you that when two Mexican fighters face-off, a spectacular show is guaranteed, and I can assure you that May 6 will be no exception especially during the Cinco de Mayo festivities."
Chavez Jr. always has had his legitimacy questioned, but at one point he was credible enough to nearly upset Sergio Martinez with a late rally. His success came in being able to drastically cut weight and then enter the ring far larger than his opponents.
As Chavez Jr. has aged, however, he has actually struggled to make weight, and thus, has had to climb to higher divisions, where his plodding style, average athleticism, and mediocre skill has been exposed.
But Chavez Jr. does still carry some power, which is why Canelo's handlers at Golden Boy perhaps believe the fight will acclimate his star to dealing with a large, heavy-handed foe in the ring prior to any Triple G matchup.
Perhaps even more important, the fight also figures to make big money, considering the large fanbase of each fighter.
"I dedicate this fight to Mexico," said Julio César Chávez, Jr. "I'm going to win, but my country will too because this is the fight that boxing needs."
The weight will be higher than any bout Canelo has ever fought, and knowing Chavez Jr.'s lack of professionalism, there remains a chance that he could fail to meet the agreed upon limit. What Canelo does should that situation arise, will be very interesting indeed.
Álvarez was last seen in the ring Sept. 17, 2016, knocking out the previously undefeated WBO junior middleweight champion Liam Smith in front of more than 51,000 fans in Dallas, Texas.
Chávez was last in action Dec. 10, 2016, when he secured a unanimous decision victory over German fighter Dominik Britsch in Monterrey, Mexico.
Adrien Broner to face Adrian Granados
Former four-division world champion and Cincinnati-native Adrien Broner (32-2, 24 KOs) will headline in his hometown as he takes on hard-hitting contender Adrian Granados (18-4-2, 12 KOs) from the Cintas Center at Xavier University in Cincinnati.
Televised coverage on Showtime begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and will feature exciting undercard action that will be announced shortly.
“I’m back at home and excited to get back in the ring,” said Broner. “I’m ready to fight. The boxing game isn’t the same without me. Granados is a solid guy who beat someone that no one thought he would beat. I know him well and I know there’s no doubt he’ll be ready to fight.”
“James Kirkland always fights better with Ann Wolfe in his corner. He’s doing everything possible to be the best in this fight and we’re going to do the same.”
“Badou doesn’t do anything spectacularly, but he does everything well. I’ve got to be on top of my game to get the victory."
“I’m going in there to break him down. I’m going to be the better fighter. If I get an opportunity to land something that can change the fight, I’m going to take my chance."
“I let [Gervonta] Davis do the talking. I like when people talk like that, because I get to shut them up on the night of the fight. He’s a Floyd Mayweather imitation. Just like all imitations, it’s not as good as the real one."
LEO SANTA CRUZ:
“My dad is my trainer full-time. He’s always been the one who knows how to point out and correct the mistakes I make in training. I think having him full-time will be a big difference. He will push me more."
“My loss to George Groves was a blessing in disguise. If that didn’t happen to me, I don’t know where I would be in my career. I was too big for my boots back then. I thought I was the golden boy and I was humbled. I had to rebuild and I came back.”
"I'm going to have a good jab, use my range and be smart in there. I think my skillset can take away any advantage he thinks he has. Timing kills speed."
“I’m here for the best fights and the best fighters out there so if Canelo Alvarez wants to fight, to clear what happened November 2015, they know where to find me. It was close. We orchestrated the plan in a perfect way and we believe that we were the winners of the fight."
“I’ve been on the downside and the upside of boxing, but my name has made it through. I’m not going to take my talent for granted and I’m going to change for the better."
"Miguel in just the past two days has been great. We dusted off the body bag. Body punches are hard. Yes, I peed blood last night. It’s good to be back to work and I am happy to have him back in the gym.”
Mo Hooker added to Cotto-Kirkland card
Reigning NABO Junior Welterweight Champion Maurice “Mighty Mo” Hooker (20-0-3, 14 KOs) will face Mexican knockout specialist Juan Pablo “Che Che” Lopez (29-3, 24 KOs) in a 10-round champion defense on the freeview undercard of Miguel Cotto vs. James Kirkland “The Return” on Saturday, February 25 at Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas.
Golovkin to fight Danny Jacobs at Madison Square Garden
“The Mecca of Boxing” and The World’s Most Famous Arena, Madison Square Garden, will host Unified Middleweight World Champion Gennady Golovkin (36-0, 33 KO’s) as he defends his titles (WBC, WBA, IBF, IBO) against WBA Middleweight Champion and Mandatory Challenger, Brooklyn’s Daniel Jacobs (32-1, 29 KO’s), on Saturday, March 18, 2017.
The event will be shown live on HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 6:00 p.m. PT.
Golovkin and Jacobs have an extraordinary combined 35 consecutive knockouts heading into this highly anticipated battle.
“I love fighting at Madison Square Garden, it feels like my second home,” said Golovkin. “Danny is a great fighter, one of the best middleweights and a big test for me. I look forward to another ‘Big Drama Show’ in New York City.”
Since his first fight in the United States and on HBO in September 2012, Golovkin has become one of the most talked about fighters in the world. In his last three fights, Golovkin has sold out Madison Square Garden, The Fabulous Forum in Los Angeles and The O2 in London. The battle with Jacobs will be the fifth time Golovkin has fought at Madison Square Garden.
In his last fight, on September 10, 2016 in front of over 19,000 fans at The 02, Golovkin stopped Undefeated Welterweight World Champion Kell Brook in the fifth round, his 23rd consecutive knockout and his 17th straight middleweight world title defense.
Born and raised in the boxing hotbed of Brownsville, New York which has produced many legendary world champions including Mike Tyson and Riddock Bowe, the heavy-handed Jacobs has scored numerous highlight reel knockouts over his nine years as a professional.
In the most impressive fight of his career on December 5, 2015, Jacobs spectacularly knocked out longtime rival and then undefeated former middleweight champion Peter Quillin in the first round in Brooklyn, New York.
Stated Jacobs, “I’m excited about facing Gennady and proving I’m the best middleweight in the world. On March 18th I’m bringing all the belts back to Brooklyn with me.”
One of the biggest punchers in the sport of boxing, Jacobs has won his last 12 fights, all by stoppage.
Lee Selby to fight Jonathan Victor Barros on January 28
A winner of 19 in a row, featherweight world champion Lee Selby (23-1, 8 KOs) will fight for the second time in the United States when he battles former world champion Jonathan Victor Barros (41-4-1, 22 KOs) live on Showtime on Saturday, January 28, from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
“It’s been a dream of mine since I was a young kid to box in a world title fight in Las Vegas, the mecca of boxing,” said Selby, who is making his Las Vegas debut. “I’ve seen U.K. fighters like Lennox Lewis, Ricky Hatton, Joe Calzaghe, and Amir Khan box in Las Vegas and I always knew that’s where I wanted to fight. My mandatory challenger is experienced, dangerous and I will not take him lightly. I’ve had a strong training camp and I am 100 percent focused on putting on a show for the American fans and the travelling fans from the U.K. My number one objective is to bring my world title back to Wales.”
Representing Wales, Selby has been referred to as the “Welsh Floyd Mayweather” because of the elusive style and ring generalship that led to him winning his featherweight world championship via a technical decision over Evgeny Gradovich in May 2015. Since then, the 29-year-old has defended his belt successfully against former champion Fernando Montiel and top challenger Eric Hunter.
A pro since 2004, Barros was unbeaten in his first 29 fights in Argentina before losing in a world title fight to Yuriokis Gamboa. Barros won a world title in his second opportunity by stopping Irving Berry in the seventh round of their 2010 showdown. Barros went on to defend his title with victories over Miguel Roman and Celestino Caballero. He has won seven fights in a row to earn another world title opportunity after most recently beating Satoshi Hosono in Japan.
“I’m very excited for this opportunity to compete for another world title in Las Vegas,” said Barros. “I have worked hard to put myself in this position and I am going to make the most of it. Selby has never faced anyone as dangerous as me and I plan on making it a long night for him. I am going to become another Argentine world champion and bring the title back to my country.”
The previously announced matchup between undefeated super bantamweight Adam Lopez and Danny Roman has been elevated to a 12-round title eliminator for the WBA (regular) Super Bantamweight belt held by Nehomar Cermeno.
Lopez (16-0-1, 8 KOs) and Roman (20-2-1, 7 KOs) will square off in the most significant fight of their careers in the main event of a ShoBox: The New Generation quadrupleheader on Friday, Jan. 20, live on Showtime (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast) from Bally's Atlantic City Hotel and Casino.
"I am excited that this is an elimination bout and I am one step closer to fighting for a world championship," said Lopez. "Very few fighters ever get a chance to fight for a title, and I'm not going to let it slip away. It's a huge motivator, and the stakes are higher. I am fighting for a chance to fight a guy in Cermeno who is 37 and maybe past his prime. So if I win on January 20, I feel I will win against Cermeno. He is beatable, and that is the perfect opponent to become a world champion. After I beat Roman, Cermeno will pass the torch to me."
Lopez is a classic example of a ShoBox prospect-turned-contender. He's 3-0-1 on the series, having defeated three previous unbeaten boxers. Roman has won 13 in a row dating to March 2014, and none of the fights have been close.
Said Roman: "This is what we've been working toward since day one. A shot at a world title is every boxer's dream. I can't speak for Adam, but the stakes have never been higher for me. Beating Adam is the only thing on my mind."
Jorge Linares and Anthony Crolla to fight rematch on March 25
WBC Diamond, WBA and Ring Magazine Lightweight World Champion Jorge Linares (41-3, 27 KOs) and Anthony "Million Dollar" Crolla (31-5, 15 KOs) are set to meet again in a rematch for Linares' titles at the Manchester Arena on March 25, live on Sky Sports.
"I am really excited to be going back to Manchester," said Linares. "I was treated very well by everyone and gained a lot of new British fans. Crolla is a tremendous fighter with a lot of heart so I know I must train twice as hard for another tough fight. I want to thank Eddie Hearn at Matchroom, my promoters at Golden Boy Promotions and Teiken. I promise another great performance and assure that the belts are returning home with me."
Linares and Crolla last met in the same venue for the belts in September 2016 with the Venezuelan world champion coming out on top.
"I see Jorge as the best lightweight in the world, and I want to be the best lightweight in the world," said Crolla. "It is always up for discussion that label of course, he is seen as the man at the moment and I want to test myself against the very best, even though I have already been in with him. These are the fights that I want to be involved in."
By Staff of TheDailySportsHerald.com and news services