Rating your best bang for the boxing buck Saturday, June 19
SAN DIEGO, Calif., June 18, 2021 – Having too many competing fights to watch on Saturday is the post-pandemic problem every boxing fan is happy to face.
Fighters who sat out much of 2020 all want to get into the ring multiple times this year. Promoters have been working their schedules around a hodgepodge of changing pandemic restrictions and the return of competing sports. Currently, venues are opening up, especially in Las Vegas and California, but
Even with the cancellation of the Triller card due to a positive COVID-19 test by Teofimo Lopez Jr., there remain competing events in El Paso on DAZN, in Las Vegas on ESPN+, and in Houston on Showtime PPV. Toss in the novelty card featuring Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. in an exhibition along with his track wreck son. There’s a lot to follow.
Need a little advice on where to turn your attention? Communities Digital News has you covered.
DAZN: Munguia vs Szeremeta
Middleweight Jaime Munguia of Tijuana (36-0, 29 KOs) will shake the ring rust off in defense of his minor WBO title against replacement opponent Kamil Szeremeta of Poland (21-1, 6 KOs). Szeremeta steps in for injured countrymen Maciej Sulecki. This fight isn’t expected to be terribly competitive but may provide a measuring stick for Munguia against potential opponent Gennadiy Golovkin. Golovkin blasted easily through Szeremeta. Munguia needs to do the same.
The far more intriguing fight on this card is the co-main event putting Bektimir Melikuziev of Uzbekistan (7-0, 6 KOs) against veteran Gabriel Rosado of Philadelphia (28-13-1, 14 KOs) in Melikuziev’s first 12-round bout with two minor super-middleweight titles in play. “Bek the Bully” has earned his nickname, only going past four rounds once against the durable Vaughn Alexander. He will face much more fire from Rosado, who fought well against Daniel Jacobs in November and came within a round of winning. These two won’t play around. It’s hard to know whether the fight will be a wild brawl or end with a bang, and that’s part of the fun of it.
The card starts early to accommodate a large viewing audience in Poland for the main event at 3:30 pm ET/12:30 PT, with undercard fights to follow via Facebook Watch starting at 7:30 pm ET/4:30 pm.
Showtime PPV: Charlo vs Montiel
Fans of talented WBC World Middleweight champion Jermall Charlo of Houston (31-0, 22 KOs) gets a layup title defense against Juan Macias Montiel of Mexico (24-4-2, 22 KOs), a perfectly adequate opponent. But at this level, Charlo should be challenging himself. Instead, he is expected to blow through Montiel. The card begins at 9 pm ET/6 pm PT.
“There’s no way I’m letting someone come to my backyard and take my bike. I’m taking care of business on Saturday,” said Charlo of fighting in his hometown. Asking fans to pay $70 for this card is a big ask. This is the weakest card in Showtime’s strong summer lineup. Consider hanging onto your money for another choice and wait for the highlights.
ESPN: Inoue vs Dasmarinas, Mayer vs Farias
Pound-for-pound powerhouse Naoya Inoue of Japan (20-0, 17 KOs) should have little trouble against mandatory opponent Michael Dasmarinas (30-2, 21 KOs) of the Philippines. This card airs on ESPN starting at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT.
The current WBA/IBF bantamweight champion hopes to unify the division
First with the winner of the Guillermo Rigondeaux vs John Riel Casimero bout, then in a rematch of the 2019 Fight of the Year with Nonito Donaire. All three will be ringside to see Inoue. Dasmarinas is a brave, come-forward fighter. Catnip to Inoue, who knows it’s important to put on a show for the American audience still getting to know him.
“I feel the expectations, and I want to answer those expectations, and I want to have a performance Saturday night to answer to those expectations,” said Inoue.
“Patience and perseverance allowed me to get here,” said Dasmarinas. “I am thankful to everyone that I’ve been given the chance to fight a great fighter in Naoya Inoue. America has to learn about my very hot and spicy punches!”
In the co-main event, WBO Super Featherweight champion Mikaela Mayer of Colorado Springs (14-0, 5 KOs) defends her title for the first time against former two-division champion Erica Farias of Argentina (26-4, 10 KOs). Farias is coming off two narrow losses to Jessica McCaskill, and at age 36 has faced every top name.
FITE TV: Tribute To The Kings with Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. and Jr.
Maybe, just for the fun of it, you decide instead to pay $40 for this novelty hybrid card from Guadalajara and spend the $30 left over on some good cerveza.
In the FITE TV PPV starting at 10 pm ET/7 pm PT, legendary three-division champion Chavez Sr. will meet the son of one of his greatest foes, Hector Camacho Jr. in a six-round exhibition. Chavez Sr., age 58, is in phenomenal condition and weighed in at 143 pounds. Chavez Sr. has participated in several exhibition-style fights and says this will be his last one.
“It has been a long time since I retired,” said Chavez Sr. “It has been a blast to do these exhibitions.”
Camacho Jr. (59-7-1, 33 KOs), 42, has not fought since 2019. The storyline goes that he is getting in the ring with Chavez Sr. (107-6-2, 85 KOs) to exact revenge for his father’s loss 29 years ago.
This is the co-main event. The main event is a sanctioned crazy train of a fight between Chavez Jr. (52-5-1, 35 KOs) and retired MMA champion Anderson Silva (34-11, 23 KOs Chavez Jr., age 35, is 2-3 in his last five bouts since 2017. He’s missed weight multiple times and has a bad habit of quitting when things aren’t going his way. True to form, he missed the contracted weight limit of 182 pounds, which the 44-year-old Silva made. It’s now officially a cruiserweight bout at 185 pounds after Chavez Jr. paid Silva $100,000 from his purse.
This is Silva’s third professional boxing match. The first was a knockout loss in Brazil in 1998, and the next a second-round knockout win in 2005. Silva says he wants to “compete for the respect” in boxing and would surely love to avenge several high-profile losses by MMA fighters in hybrid boxing events.
Our top boxing choices this weekend: Bek vs Rosado, The Monster, and the Chavez Jr. trainwreck
Here’s our advice on navigating Saturday’s schedule. Catch the early DAZN card, which should end early if Munguia takes care of business. Then jump over to ESPN to catch the talent and firepower of Naoya Inoue, as well as Mikaela Mayer.
Meanwhile, blow that $40 on the FITE TV exhibition, and keep an eye on your second screen. The Top Rank card in Las Vegas will end in time for you to focus on the spectacle from Guadalajara. You’ll enjoy seeing the ageless Chavez Sr. Then, admit it. Watching Anderson Silva deliver a beatdown of Chavez Jr. will be incredibly satisfying. There’s no shame in it.
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