Miguel Berchelt plans to return to junior lightweight after this weekend.

For now, the extra five pounds are solely for the sake of remaining active in a post-pandemic boxing climate.

The long-reigning 130-pound titlist from Merida, Mexico is making a temporary move to lightweight, where he will face countryman Eleazar Valenzuela in a scheduled 10-round contest. Both boxers made weight for their forthcoming clash, which takes place Saturday evening from the TV Azteca studio lot in Mexico City (ESPN, 11:00 p.m. ET/8:00 p.m. PT).

Berchelt checked in at a career-heaviest but shredded 135 pounds. Guasave’s Valenzuela (21-13-4, 16KOs) was within the tolerable contracted limit, coming in at 135.5 pounds.

The bout will mark the first fight without any title at stake for Berchelt since December 2015. A pursuit of then WBO 130-pound titlist Roman Martinez in 2016 resulted in a pair of interim title fights before claiming the WBC junior lightweight strap in an 11th round knockout of Francisco Vargas in January 2017.

Six successful defenses have followed, including a four-round bum rush of former titlist Jason Sosa last November in Carson, California. Waiting in the wings for Berchelt (37-1, 33KOs) is a mouthwatering showdown versus unbeaten former featherweight titlist Oscar Valdez, who faces Puerto Rico’s Jayson Velez in a non-title fight on July 21 in Las Vegas.

Valenzuela doesn’t figure to stand in the way of those plans. The 25-year old journeyman is just 3-3 with one No-Decision in his last seven starts, including losses to former title challengers Jose Zepeda and Jono Carroll.

Saturday’s bout marks his first since a 2nd round stoppage at the hands of Miguel Angel Parra last December. Just one career win for Valenzuela has taken place outside of his Guasave hometown, coming in November 2016 in Los Mochis, less than an hour away.

Sharing the spotlight is what figures to be a more competitive junior welterweight matchup, as unbeaten 21-year old prospect Omar Aguilar (17-0, 16KOs) faces former title challenger Dante Jardón in a 10-round battle.

Aguilar came in right at the 140-pound divisional limit for his second fight of 2020 and sixth ring appearance since last September. Jardón (32-6, 23KOs)—once a fast-rising junior lightweight knockout artist now competing as a junior lightweight—tipped the scales at 141 pounds.

Ensenada’s Aguilar has been extended past three rounds just twice in his three-year career. His lone distance fight came in December 2018, going six rounds with Emmanuel Herrera before rattling off a current six-fight knockout streak, all ending in three rounds or less.

Jardón has won eight of his last nine starts since suffering back to back losses to then-130 pound titlist Takashi Miura (New Year’s Eve 2013) and then-unbeaten prospect Adrian Estrella (July 2014). The 32-year old local attraction fights for the first time since an eight-round points win over Chester Parada last December in his Mexico City hometown.

Also on the show:

·       19-year old local prospect David 'Rey' Picasso (13-1, 5KOs) weighed 121.2 pounds for a scheduled 10-round junior featherweight bout versus Monterrey’s Florentino 'Violento' Pérez (14-5-2) who weighed 121.2 pounds;

·       Unbeaten Guadalupe-bred featherweight Rafael Espinoza (14-0, 12KOs) and local journeyman Luis Guzmán (8-14) both weighed 127.8 pounds for their eight-round bout;

·       Omar Aguilar’s younger brother, 19-year old Rubén 'Pollito' Aguilar (9-0, 7KOs) weighed 141.1 pounds, as did opponent Emanuel 'Peligro' Herrera for their six-round junior welterweight bout which opens the five-fight card.

Jake Donovan is a senior writer for BoxingScene.com. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox