I’m calling it: Vasyl Lomachenko’s headband is the boxing fashion statement of the year. He’s fighting this week: against Rocky Martinez in what could be a really fun fight. Ruslan Provodnikov is back too. They’re not the most competitive match-ups they can be in, but hey, I ain’t complaining.
- Rocky Martinez vs Vasyl Lomachenko, Saturday, HBO, NY. I don’t think New York’s Puerto Rican fans are going to have a good night on Saturday. Their man Martinez, tough and capable as he is, has nothing on Lomachenko. The Ukrainian is stepping up in weight, but his technical prowess, grace and power mean that few give Martinez a chance. On the undercard lightweight Felix Verdejo continues to tread water, facing unheralded Mexican Juan Jose Martinez. He seemed destined for the top of the sport not long ago and if he doesn’t step up soon questions will be asked.
- Ruslan Provodnikov vs John Molina, Saturday, Showtime, Verona NY. This one is sure to be fun as long as it lasts, but I doubt Molina will be able to hang with Provodnikov for long. Both junior welterweights have a lot of miles on the clock and both throw bombs, but Provodnikov has a granite chin and Molina doesn’t. Should have eaten more moose liver as a kid. On the undercard, enigmatic junior middleweight Demetrius Andrade faces Cleveland’s Willie Nelson. Andrade is too cute by half (and despite his skills hasn’t been in a truly top-level fight since turning pro eight years ago) but will probably outbox Nelson. Also fighting is undefeated Montenegrin lightweight Dejan Zlaticanan, who’s taking on Bolivia’s Franklin Mamani in a total mismatch.
- Jesus Gutierrez vs Demond Brock, Thursday, CBS Sports Net, Las Vegas. Not sure why this is on TV but, hey, why not?