By Keith Idec
Promoter Bob Arum has finalized a site deal for a card headlined by the Vasyl Lomachenko-Jason Sosa fight.
Arum told BoxingScene.com the show definitely will take place at MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Maryland. The new casino and resort near Washington, D.C., opened in December.
Arum also considered sites in California and Las Vegas before securing a deal to bring the card to MGM National Harbor.
HBO will televise the Lomachenko-Sosa 130-pound championship bout, as well as another fight featuring light heavyweight contender Oleksandr Gvozdyk. An opponent for Ukraine’s Gvozdyk (12-0, 10 KOs) hasn’t been finalized.
Having the card at MGM National Harbor could be viewed as a slight advantage for Sosa (20-1-4, 15 KOs), who’s a huge underdog against Ukraine’s Lomachenko (7-1, 5 KOs). The WBA world super featherweight champion is from Camden, New Jersey, just outside of Philadelphia, and figures to have a sizeable amount of supporters in the arena when he challenges Lomachenko, the WBO world super featherweight champ.
The April 8 card also could include the pro debut of Shakur Stevenson.
The Olympic silver medalist signed a promotional contract Thursday with Arum’s Top Rank Inc. The Newark, New Jersey native lives and trains near Washington, D.C., which would make this card a good fit for the talented featherweight’s first professional fight.
The card headlined by the Lomachenko-Sosa will be the second boxing show at MGM National Harbor in less than a month.
The inaugural card at the new venue will be televised by Showtime on March 11.
Gary Russell Jr. (27-1, 16 KOs), a native of nearby Capitol Heights, Maryland, will headline that show in a 12-round defense of his WBC world featherweight title against Colombia’s Oscar Escandon (25-2, 17 KOs). That telecast also will include another 12-round bout between Houston’s Jermell Charlo (28-0, 13 KOs), the WBC world super welterweight champion, and Dallas’ Charles Hatley (26-1-1, 18 KOs).
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.