Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

BoxingScene.com's Television Picks of The Week

By Cliff Rold

So, the old man still has it against the right foes.

We already knew that.  It was still something to see last week.  Bernard Hopkins’s knockdown of Beibut Shumenov in round eleven was a memorable moment to punctuate the evening.  Will we get some proper punctuation this weekend?  Note, there will be a Thursday night edition of Friday Night Fights this week (Josesito Lopez-Aron Martinez, 9 PM EST/6 PM PST) as well as a Unimas show late on Saturday (Jose Zepdea-Rob Frankel, 11 PM EST/PST).  Beyond those two shows…

These are the picks of the week.

Pick It: World Champion Wladimir Klitschko vs. Alex Leapai (Saturday, ESPN, 5 PM EST/2 PM PST)

After the steaming turd that was his successful defense against Alexander Povetkin, why would a fight against a fighter who really has no business with a mandatory slot be the pick of the week?  It’s all about network location.  Over the next two weeks, ESPN is investing in the Heavyweight division and increasing their overall investment in boxing by doing so.  If the ratings are strong, we can hope for more.  HBO and Showtime are fine but the audience mass available through ESPN is substantially better.  It’s the next best thing to network TV.  If ESPN can get some momentum going in what is classically the easiest division to mainstream, boxing can only benefit.  Combine that with this: Klitschko (61-3, 51 KO) is sometimes more watchable against the hapless.  Leapai (30-4-2, 24 KO) may or may not fit that description.  It certainly looks that way on paper. 

Pick Fly: #1 Juan Francisco Estrada vs. Richie Mepranum (Saturday, Azteca America, 10 PM EST/PST)

In 2013, Estrada (25-2, 18 KO) won two of the major titles at Flyweight with an excellent upset of Brian Viloria.  He followed with an exciting, validating title defense against legitimate contender Milan Melindo.  Both of those bouts stole the show on HBO2 shows from Macau.  His reward?  It isn’t an upgrade to HBO prime time.  The urge is typically not to recommend Azteca shows because one never knows whose Azteca America listings will actually show frigging fights.  Estrada vs. Mepranum (27-3-1, 6 KO) might air in your locale.  If it does, watch it.  Estrada is one of the best Mexican fighters going today.  He’s also a standout in arguably the most exciting, maybe even best period, weight class in boxing today.

Pick Showtime: Tripleheader (Saturday, Showtime, 9:30 PM EST/PST)

So this is one of those cards that everyone seems ready to drown in antipathy.  In a year where the two flagship networks are struggling to provide subscribers the quality they should expect, we have three fights with prohibitive favorites in every bout.  Welterweight Keith Thurman (22-0, 20 KO) faces former Lightweight titlist Julio Diaz (40-9-1, 25 KO).  Lucas Matthysse (34-3, 32 KO) returns from a loss to Danny Garcia against John Molina (27-3, 22 KO).  Rising Lightweight Omar Figueroa (22-0-1, 17 KO) tackles Jerry Belmontes (19-3, 5 KO).  None of the men in position of opponent are so terrible as to be without any chances, but those chances are mighty slim.  This seems like a night designed to make the desired victors come out looking like beasts.  We’ll see how it goes.

We’ll find out amidst what is really a pre-fight show for Saturday.  

For BoxingScene’s latest full divisional ratings, log on to: http://www.boxingscene.com/forums/view.php?pg=boxing-ratings

Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene, a founding member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, and a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America.  He can be reached at [email protected]

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Oscar De La Hoya's Hypocrisy is All About Floyd Mayweather Anthony Dirrell Cut Badly, Beats Douglin by Technical Decision Clark Edges Dolton By Majority Decision; Karl Beats Martin Parker: I Would Not Have Problems Knocking Wilder, Joshua Out! Liam Smith Keeps Close Eye on Cotto-Ali, Open To Kell Brook Clash Klitschko Leaves The Door Open For a Ring Return in The Future Video: Ellerbe Talks UFC Doing Boxing, Mayweather Promotions Photos: Ishe Smith, Julian Williams Face To Face at Weigh-In Oscar Vasquez Hopes To Land a Major Fight in 2018 BJ Flores Sets Record Straight on Alexander Povetkin Fight Photos: Sullivan Barrera Grinds Hard - Ripped, Ready For Valera Amir Khan: I Embarrassed Myself By Making Joshua Accusation Chavez Jr. Return: Alfredo Angulo Now The Frontrunner Denis Shafikov vs. Rene Alvarado, HBO Latino, December 9 Wilder's Trainer: Deontay Wants To Be First Heavyweight at 50-0 Dejan Zlaticanin Returns on December 14, Broadway Boxing Jessie Vargas vs. Aaron Herrera Finalized - Dec. 15, PBC on FS1 Ricardo Mayorga Rules Out Retirement, Plans February Return Diego De La Hoya vs. Jose Salgado - Golden Boy on ESPN, Dec. 14 Bellew: It's Disgusting That Wilder Insinuated Joshua is on Steroids UK News: Tommy McCarthy, Lewis Crocker, Ricky Summers Miguel Cotto Career Special on HBO, November 25 Photo: Carl Frampton, Horacio Garcia Ready For War in Belfast Joseph Parker: I Have 'A Lot of Options' Other Than Joshua, Wilder Frampton: All The Big Fights Interest Me, The Best is Yet To Come Shawn Porter: Crawford Beats Horn Easy, Everybody is a Target! Teddy Atlas Explains Why He Favors Lomachenko Over Rigondeaux Ishe Smith: I Asked For Julian Williams, Confident I'll Get The Win Nathan Gorman Welcomes Daniel Dubois: He Knows Where I Am Alexander Povetkin vs. Christian Hammer - Full Card is Set Truax: I Have To Be at My Absolute Best To Beat James DeGale Jarrell Miller: I Would Stop Dillian Whyte in Four or Five Rounds Ryoichi Taguchi vs. Milan Melindo Unification Set, December 31 Wilder Would Agree to Fight Ortiz Again, Wants to 'Punish' Him Kovalev: The Pressure Will Be High To Fight Beterbiev, Bivol Roy Jones Jr. Brings WinnaVegas Casino Card To BeIN Sports Jamie Conlan Plans To Box Jerwin Ancajas, Not Go To War Jose Martinez Stops Jesus Martinez for NABO Championship Parker Says Forget Wilder Fight: I'm Knocking Anthony Joshua Out! Vasyl Lomachenko: The Fight With Rigondeaux Will Be Historic
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement