Alberto Machado: I Want To Beat The Other Champions at 130

by Francisco Salazar

Alberto Machado will be doing more than just defending his world title tonight.

Machado will be representing and calling out attention to the thousands of people in Puerto Rico still attempting to recover from Hurricane Maria in September. As his fellow countrymen continue to rebuild and recover, Machado will attempt to prove he is the best fighter at 130 pounds.

Machado will defend his WBA junior lightweight title against mandatory challenger Rafael Mensah at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas.

alberto-machado (2)_1

The 12 round bout will precede the 12 round junior middleweight bout between WBO titleholder Jaime Munguia and challenger Liam Smith. Both fights will air live on HBO (10 p.m. ET/ 7 p.m. PT).

Machado (19-0, 16 knockouts) will be defending the title for the first time. The 27-year-old from San Juan rallied from a knockdown and was down on the scorecards to knock out Jerzeel Corrales in the eighth round.

He will face a fellow southpaw in Mensah (31-0, 23 KOs), who will be fighting for the first time outside of Ghana. Mensah has not fought the level of opposition Machado has, with his two most notable victories coming over Justin Savi and Fatiou Fassinou.

Machado is not overconfident in facing Mensah.

"I don't know a whole lot about (Mensah)," Machado told in a phone interview. "I just know he's a southpaw from Ghana and has over 30 fights as a pro. I just have to go in there with the mentality to listen (trainer) Freddie Roach and to have the will to win."

Machado, who is co-promoted by Golden Boy Promotions and Miguel Cotto Promotions, has kept in touch with family and friends in Puerto Rico while he has been training at the Wild Card Gym in Hollywood, California.

Most basic services, such as electricity and running water, has returned to most of the people on the island, but several people still left in the dark. Machado will carry his fellow countrymen in spirit with him to the ring tonight.

"I have a lot of emotions and it's difficult to explain," said Machado, who goes by the nickname of 'El Explosivo.' "Many people on the island have not recovered from the hurricane. Puerto Rico is still struggling. They were not prepared for such a big natural disaster. I'm going to carry the flag (tonight) for the people of Puerto Rico."

Machado wants to unify the division. A likely fight with Gervonta Davis could take place later this fall or in early 2019 to decide the outright WBA title or against WBC titleholder Miguel Berchelt.

The WBO and IBF title belts are currently vacant, but will have a titleholder in the next few weeks as the two highest ranked fighters will fight for those belts.

Machado wants to prove he is the best fighter at 130 pounds.

"I want to demonstrate that I'm one of the best fighters in boxing. I want to defeat the mandatories and beat the other champions in the division."

Francisco A. Salazar has written for since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing  

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by PETUFF on 07-21-2018

Well first you got win tonight!! you don't have an easy fight let see i got you by decicion an MUNGUIA BY KO !:boxing::boxing:

Comment by PrBoxing88 on 07-21-2018

Machado by way of Brutal KO.

Comment by indelible on 07-21-2018

I woke up with that feeling too. Between this fight of Machado with Mensah and Munguia with Smith, there's going to be an upset tonight

Comment by Hatesrats on 07-21-2018

Have a feeling Machado is getting laid out tonight by Ike's nephew.

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (4)
Top Headlines Exciting Card Scheduled for the WBO Convention in Panama Farmer: I'm Still Learning on The Job Every Day, It's Just Scary Canelo: Mayweather Should Return The Right Way - Fight Me! Jason Moloney Confident of Shocking Emmanuel Rodriguez Canelo: I'm Taking a Big Risk Entering Fielding's Comfort Zone Juan Heraldez-Maynard Allison Set For Mayweather Card, 10/27 Photos: Canelo, Rocky Fielding - Size Each Other Up in NYC Marcus Browne Arrested, 3rd Domestic Incident Since December Miguel Berchelt vs. Miguel Roman - Undercard Revealed Wilder Manager To Hearn: After Fury Fight, We Can Talk Joshua DAZN To Stream Canelo-Fielding Card, Future Canelo Fights Dmitry Bivol: I Want To Unify All Four Belts Like Usyk Did Tevin Farmer To Gervonta Davis: Enough Talk, I Want You Next! Dmitry Bivol vs. Jean Pascal is Confirmed For November 24, HBO Crawford vs. Spence - CompuBox Head To Head Analysis Khabib's Dad Wants Mike Tyson, Loma Sr. For Mayweather Bout Crawford-Benavidez ESPN Show Averaged 2.245 Million Viewers Mark Heffron To Vie For Vacant British Belt, Welborn Vacates Jarrell Miller Moving Forward With Plan To Win WBA 'Regular' Belt Crawford Frustrated at Times; "I Don't Get the Credit I Deserve" Arum: Mayweather Wouldn’t Have Gone For KO Like Crawford Kautondokwa's Promoter Expects Saunders To Bounce Back Zolani Tete Hopes Mayweather Sr. Will Provide Boost in WBSS Johnny Garton Expects a Real Fire Fight With Gary Corcoran Kell Brook Aims For December Fight, No Issue With 147 For Khan Ali Akhmedov Rolls Forward With Another Knockout Victory WBC Prez: Canelo Shut Mouths, Showed He's Better Than GGG! Nathan Gorman is Hounding Hatton For Daniel Dubois Fight Dmitry Bivol vs. Jean Pascal in Play For November 24 Regis Prograis Sees Future at 147, Eyes Errol Spence Cormier: Khabib is Crazy, Mayweather Will Beat Him Up Bad! Canelo: The WBC Has Been My Family Since The Beginning Dorticos' Coach Confident Second Time is The Charm in WBSS Miguel Roman Training Hard, Confident of Shocking Berchelt Photos: Canelo Honored By The WBC, Belted By Sulaiman Joe Smith Promoter: We Expect Beterbiev Fight Next, Not Bivol Andrade: I Want Big Fights, Not Face Lesser Guys Like Charlos Do Jaime Munguia Eyes December Fight, Takeshi Inoue is Possible Josh Taylor: Postol Gave Me Test I Needed, I'll Win The WBSS Artur Beterbiev vs. Joe Smith in Play, Says Michel

Latest Active Forum Threads