by Cliff Rold
If you’re looking for good fights on U.S. TV this week, it’s going to be a struggle. After a weekend with more boxing than the DVR could handle, fight fans are treated to a lull.
Final Four? Check.
Big time boxing on U.S. TV? See ya’ mid-April.
Thank goodness boxing is a global sport. For the diehard faithful, there are some treats.
These are the picks of the week.
Pick It: Hank Lundy vs. Dannie Williams (Friday, ESPN2, 9 PM EST/6 PM PST)
He may never be a championship level guy, but Lightweight’s Lundy (21-1-1, 11 KO) is worth tuning in for. He brings good smack and he makes solid fights. Coming off a retiring of former Olympian and pro titlist David Diaz, Lundy is riding high on a three fight win streak. This week, he’s paired with a Williams (21-1, 17 KO) whose only loss came on a decision to eventual 130 lb. title challenger Eloy Perez in 2009. Williams has won three in a row by stop and four of his last five. Lundy’s only loss was by stoppage. This should be a solid main event on Friday Night Fights…plus, we get to hear Teddy Atlas rail on the end of Carlos Molina-James Kirkland. Book it.
Pick 115: #4 Suriyan Sor Rungvisai vs. Yota Sato (Tuesday, Japan, ?)
Since a narrow decision loss in a title try at then Flyweight king Pongsaklek Wonjongkam in 2010, Sor Rungvisai (20-4-1, 7 KO) has emerged as one of the best at 115 lbs. He’s won six in a row, to include a title win versus veteran Tomas Rojas and a defense against former titlist Nobuo Nashiro in his last two outings. He’ll put the WBC belt on the line, on the road, against a Sato (23-2-1, 12 KO) who has not tasted defeat since 2005. This has the makings of an interesting clash with upset possibilities. YouTube might give those outside Asia a look sometime later in the week.
Pick 105: #1 Nkosinathi Joyi vs. #10 Katsunari Takayama (Friday, South Africa, ?)
In another YouTube special, this repeatedly rescheduled rematch appears finally to be a go. It’s certainly taken long enough. Their first clash came in January 2011 and they’ve been on the shelf since. In that one, an accidental clash of heads drew a “No Contest” at the end of three. Now, the talented Joyi (21-0, 15 KO) seeks to make only his second defense since winning the IBF belt at Strawweight in 2010 with a crafty decision over Raul Garcia. Takayama (24-4, 10 KO), a former titlist in class, may be in last chance mode here and he’s on the road. This could get heated in short order. Just watch the heads.
Back in seven.
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Cliff Rold is a member of the Ring Magazine Ratings Advisory Panel and the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at [email protected]