It’s a glorious weekend of boxing not because of the quality bouts (although there are a handful) but because three boxers with names like those in the headline, who also matter, are all in action. That’s not exactly true; I take it back. Flyweight champion Pongsaklek Wonjongkam apparently isn’t fighting until Oct. 8, despite ESPN’s listing. So it’s a lie. Even worse, this post will be the least clicked-on post in TQBR history because everyone will click away after failing to finish reading that headline, but who cares? It was irresistible.
Also, per friend of the site cguenard, here’s a picture of heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko dressed up all silly for Oktoberfest with his gf Hayden Panettiere. Then, for no other reason than because I can, I have inserted a video of Wayne Brady and Mike Tyson reenacting a Bobby Brown song and video. It’s at the end of the post, after the rundown of the weekend’s boxing schedule.
- Luis Concepcion-Denkaosan Kaowichit/Guillermo Jones-Valery Brudov, Saturday, Panama City. Where’s ESPN3 when you need ’em? I’ve read in several places that TVMax has a live legal stream of some of its fights here, but I never seem to tune in the day when they’re up with it. This is a pretty good doubleheader starring Ring magazine’s #4 flyweight (Kaowichit) against its #6 flyweight (Concepcion, the alphabet interim beltholder from Panama). Concepcion has a nice mixture of poise, power and aggression, while Denkaosan is a sound, come-forward Thai with little pop in his punches but who is more experienced, having split a pair of fights recently with Daiki Kameda, among other notable bouts. It could be a good, solidly-fought bout. Jones, meanwhile, is a cruiserweight with top-10 talent who will be ending a two-year layoff. Brudov is no joke of a comeback opponent; in his last meaningful bout, against Firat Arslan, he lost a split decision. However, that was in 2007, and presumably Brudov avoided taking a big-time opponent in the interim because he’s been a mandatory challenger to Jones’ alphabet belt since.
- Shobox, Friday, Showtime, Santa Ynez Calif. A junior welterweight bout between Tim Coleman and Patrick Lopez headlines, and it’s an interesting one. Showtime has billed it as “two fringe contenders coming off big wins,” but Coleman absolutely didn’t deserve that win over Mike Arnoautis last year. Still, he’s not without some talent, and he’s got Roger Mayweather in his corner. Lopez stomped down semi-prospect Prenice Brewer in an upset on Friday Night Fights to get this fight. It figures as a decent little boxer vs. puncher scrap. Lightweight Archie Ray Marquez is in the supporting bout against Juan Santiago, who’s got experience against prospects Eloy Perez and Vernon Paris in losing battles.
- Joe Spina-Ray Oliveira, Saturday, Mashantucket Conn. This fight is only worth mentioning because it’s disturbing and probably shouldn’t have been allowed. I initially touched on it here. Friend of the site David P. Greisman touched on it here. Short version: Oliveira, nearly 42, is ending a five-year retirement that began with a bout marked by a scary in-ring health concern and moving up from being a 140-pounder for most of his life to fight Spina, a fringe contender, at 175 pounds.
- Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym-Ryol Li Lee, Saturday, Tokyo. Of the two great-named Thai boxers definitely in action this weekend, Poonsawat is taking the second-most meaningful bout. Poonsawat is the default #1 junior featherweight, having moved into the top spot in Ring’s rankings because others moved up to feather. Lee is a mystery to me, with one account from a Japanese reporter saying he has no advantages over the more experienced Poonsawat besides height (like everyone who fights the squat Poonsawat), one report calling him “fast-rising” and the alphabet title organization in which Poonsawat has his belt ranking him 14th.
- Solo Boxeo, Friday, TeleFutura, Corrientes Argentina. Lightweight Jorge Barrios apparently is out of grave legal trouble over quite the ugly incident, so he’s back in action and usually provides plenty of said action. His opponent is a safe one, journeyman Wilson Alcorro.
- Fight Night Club, Thursday, Fox Sports Net/ustream.com/RingTV.com, Los Angeles. Jessie Vargas is a fun, tall welterweight prospect trained by Roger Mayweather, who’s having a busy week. His opponent, Pablo Sarmiento, is quite experienced, but he hasn’t fought in six years and he’s 39. This isn’t as worrisome as Spina-Oliveira, but it is still a fair amount worrisome. Five-and-oh welterweight Anthony Martinez is in the main supporting bout.
- The Rest. Ring’s #10 junior welterweight, Paul McCloskey of Ireland, will be in action Saturday on RTE, where I have previously seen live free legal streams here… Middleweight Isaac Rodrigues, coming off a win against Brian Vera, appears on GoFightLive Saturday… Middleweight Andy Lee fights in my home state of Indiana Friday, although it’s not clear whether it’ll lead to the on-again/off-again all-Irish John Duddy showdown.