Advertisement
Advertisement

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 Eubank Sr. Baits Golovkin: Prove To Me That You Can Beat My Son! Rey Ojeda Shocks Puerto Rico With Retirement Announcement Thurman-Porter Makes Working Weekend Worth The Wrangling Cotto vs. Marquez Negotiations Continue To Play Out Hurd: I Didn’t Want to Force the Stoppage After Dropping Molina Joshua Warns Wilder: Focus on Arreola, I'll Be To America Soon Photos/Weights: Edner Cherry vs Lydell Rhodes, Douglas-Collado 30 Day Weights: Crawford 150.4-Pounds, Postol 145.5-Pounds Bob Arum Details Top Rank's Plans in China Examining the Keith Thurman-Shawn Porter Scorecards Golovkin-Eubank Moves Closer After 'Very Positive' Talks in London Povetkin's Promoter: No Interim-Fight, Wilder Shot By Year's End Thurman-Porter: Highest Barclays Boxing Gate, 2nd Largest Crowd Roach Embraces Pacquiao-Broner: We'd Go For The Knockout! Juan Diaz: Win Over Vazquez Takes Me One Step Closer To Title Terence Crawford Special Debuts on HBO, July 9th Oscar Molina: I'll Come Back From Loss to Jarrett Hurd Froch: If Eubank Faces Golovkin in September - I'd Be Shocked Brook: After Vargas - I Need To Get in There With Keith Thurman! Ivan Baranchyk, Tommy Morrison's Son Win Big in Miami Pablo Cesar Cano-Alfonso Gomez Set For July 15, Gibson is Out Thurman: Porter Isn't Top Two, But He Remains Marquee at 147 Golovkin vs. Eubank: Hearn Aims To Finalize Deal in 48-72 Hours Tommy Langford-Ronny Gabel Set For July 16th in Cardiff Postol, Roach Reflect Back on Knocking Lucas Matthysse Out Frank Warren: Liam Smith Has Very Good Shot To Beat Canelo! Vargas To Kell Brook: I Already Signed, Let's Get This Over With! Thurman Wants To Keep Fighting on Free TV, Not on Pay-Per-View Froch: Golovkin Rejected Terms, I'd Walk Through DeGale in 5 or 6 Casey Ramos Faces Paredes on Top Rank Bill, 7/16 on UniMas Joseph Parker Embraces Anthony Joshua Title Fight For The Fall Mayweather Admits: For The 'Right Price' I Might Come Back! Mikaela Lauren-Klara Svensson Showdown Set For Sept. 10 Mayweather Backs Golden Boy's Decision on Canelo-Golovkin Freddie Roach Feels Albert Pagara Could Be Future World Champ "Fighting Words" - Keith Thurman: Once Upon A "One Time" Golovkin vs. Eubank Deal Hangs in The Balance Over Sky Money Deontay Wilder To Anthony Joshua: Why Wait? Let's Fight Now! Photos: Mayweather Hits BET Awards, Laila Ali Honors Father Video: Peter Quillin Discusses The Future of His Career
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement