So, what WOULD you do if you had a time machine? Personally, I’ve always thought it would be easier to kill Hitler’s mother than Hitler. You know, before she gave birth to him and all. I guess I’m that guy.
Moving on from historical homicide and the peerless Louis C.K., this week’s boxing schedule features a top-five pound-for-pound fighter in a pretty good HBO main event. The broadcast will also replay the Chad Dawson-Bernard Hopkins “fight” from last week’s pay-per-view, in case you were among the millions smart enough to save your money or you are a masochist who actually wants to watch it again. In other action, ShoBox features a matchup of undefeated super middleweights, Pongsaklek Wonjongkam actually fights somebody you’ve heard of in Thailand, Anthony Mundine faces the Matthew Hatton of the Alvarez clan in Australia, and AT&T U-Verse gives Dan Rafael another opportunity to gush about the high quality of their fight streams. While there aren’t a ton of must-see match-ups, it’s a busy rest of the week and weekend ahead for the sweet science.
- Nonito Donaire vs. Omar Narvaez/Chad Dawson vs. Bernard Hopkins (replay), Saturday, HBO, New York. I’m pretty sure we’ve exhausted everything there is to say about Dawson-Hopkins, short of examining and analyzing each frame of the broadcast Zapruder style. If you haven’t seen it yet, you might want to check it out, the whole shindig doesn’t last very long and the ending was a tad controversial (oops, SPOILER!!). In the only live fight of the broadcast, Ring Magazine’s number #4 ranked pound-for-pound fighter, Nonito Donaire, takes on stalwart flyweight and junior bantamweight Omar Narvaez, who is undefeated but has faced rather limited competition for a guy who has been on the world stage as long as he has. Both guys are southpaws, but the similarities end right there. Narvaez is 36, which is pretty ancient for a fighter his size, and he does not possess the elite speed and punching power of somebody on Donaire’s level. I expect Donaire to cruise, but maybe Narvaez can use his experience to give Donaire some trouble. Regardless, I’m kind of glad for the opportunity to see Narvaez, who for so long has been a name in the rankings and a grainy YouTube impression to me. Tim will have his full, comprehensive analysis of the matchup later in the week.
- Edwin Rodriguez vs. Will Rosinsky/Gabriel Bracero vs. Daniel Sostre, Friday, Showtime, Connecticut. Rodriguez is a talented, rising super middleweight prospect with a penchant for beating the sons of famous fighters (Aaron Pryor, Jr. and James McGirt are among his last three victims). Rosinsky’s biggest claim to fame is being the subject of a Thomas Hauser column a while back. This match-up of unbeaten young fighters is right in line with the mission statement for ShoBox, though Rodriguez is clearly the more heralded fighter and is expected to win. If all goes as planned, Rosinsky might need to fall back on that teaching degree sooner rather than later. Oh, and a fight between a Massachusetts fighter and a New York fighter taking place in Connecticut? Makes more sense than Dawson-Hopkins in California, doesn’t it? In the co-feature, technically gifted, power deprived (though his last two fights have ended inside the distance), and unbeaten junior welterweight Gabriel Bracero faces Daniel Sostre, who is coming off a loss to Raymond Serrano (defensible) and a draw with Damian Frias (dubious) in his last two fights. Sostre has never been stopped in his four losses and Bracero has just three knockouts among his 17 wins, so expect this one to go the distance unless Bracero’s recent power surge is legit.
- Pongsaklek Wonjongkam vs. Edgar Sosa, Friday, Bangkok, Thailand. The flyweight champion of the world defends his title against Sosa, who ranks as one of the better opponents the Thai legend has faced in defense of his crown. Sosa had a nice long run at junior flyweight before being stopped by Rodel Mayol in 2009, but has won his six fights since at flyweight against modest opposition. Wonjongkam has been Wonjongkam since regaining the title in an upset win over Koki Kameda early last year, mixing in a couple of title defenses against lackluster opponents with a string of showcase fights against absolute no-hopers. Both guys are in their thirties, and their combined age of 66 might be some kind of flyweight championship fight record. I like Wonjongkam to squeak this one out on the scorecards but I wouldn’t be completely stunned if Sosa pulled off the upset – Wonjongkam is one of the few modern fighters whose BoxRec record stretches across multiple pages, after all. He’s due to start winding down soon.
- The Rest. On Wednesday, Anthony Mundine squares off against Canelo’s brother, Rigoberto Alvarez, in Australia, which should be a pretty evenly matched battle of junior middleweights. I like Mundine by nefarious hometown decision… Prospect Dierry Jean takes on Francisco Lorenzo in Montreal on Thursday, while fellow prospect Adonis Stevenson faces, um, somebody on the same card; his opponent is currently TBA… Friday on TeleFutura, undefeated knockout artist Fidel Maldonado takes on Erick Cruz in a lightweight bout that Oscar De La Hoya “guarantee[s] will produce fireworks,” per the fight’s press release. Hopefully fireworks are legal in Pharr, Texas… Saturday in Germany, cruiserweight Marco Huck faces Argentinean Rogelio Omar Rossi, whom Huck will likely handle with ease… Also on Saturday, lightweight Paulus Moses faces Richard Abril in Panama City, Panama (though BoxRec claims that Miguel Acosta is fighting Abril, not Moses; I’m going to trust the exponentially more reliable Rafael on this one). Alberto Mosquera faces Brunet Zamora on the same card… More Saturday action takes place on Azteca America, with Daniel Sostre conqueror Raymond Serrano headlining a card from Atlantic City (against the hopeless Angel Rios) featuring a number of names from the northeast, including Vinny Maddalone, Chazz Witherspoon, and Shamone Alvarez… On the Donaire-Narvaez undercard, featherweight Mikey Garcia will pound Juan Carlos Martinez into submission unless something completely unexpected happens… Finally, on Saturday, that gorgeous AT&T U-Verse stream will feature the little guys in a pair of junior flyweight bouts, with Mario Rodriguez facing Karl Diaz and Pedro Guevera squaring off against Jorge Estrada.