By Steve Kim
Multiple sources have told BoxingScene.com that WBC 130-pound champion, Miguel Berchelt, will be unable to defend his title against Orlando Salido as planned on December 9th in Las Vegas.
Word is that Berchelt - who has scored solid victories over Francisco Vargas and then Takashi Miura in 2017 - has an inflamed right hand. So now the focus turns to trying to make the rematch between Vargas and Salido - who engaged in the 2016 'Fight of the Year' at the StubHub Center in Carson, California last June.
This card is supposed to be televised by HBO, who may pull the plug if an acceptable main event is not found.
Berchelt (32-1, 28 KOs) was really looking forward to trading punches with Salido, who hoped to finally secure another crack at a world title after several other opportunities fell through.
Berchelt had a breakout year, first with stopped Vargas in January for the WBC title, and then dominating Miura in a mandatory defense in July.
Salido (44-13-4, 31 KOs) went to war last June with Vargas, ending in a twelve round majority draw. He came back in May of this year and stopped Aristides Perez in Mexico.
Vargas (23-1-2, 17 KOs) was already being booked to appear in the December 9th co-feature. He was going to face former champion Jhonny Gonzalez in a final WBC eliminator.
But Gonzalez - who already has a fight scheduled in the coming weeks - advised the WBC that he would not be ready in time for that bout - so the sanctioning body approved Miguel Roman to replace him.
HBO will need a solid main event that night, as ESPN will be televising a Top Rank card from Madison Square Garden in New York City - which features the very anticipated dream fight between world champions Vasyl Lomachenko and Guillermo Rigondeaux.
Steve Kim is the news editor for BoxingScene.com