by Cliff Rold
Three Saturday shows, three events worth seeking out, and boxing keep rolling to the crescendo that is the end of the 2012 boxing ‘season.’ While ShoBox will also go on Friday with a look at prospect Omar Henry, it is diverse championship action in three different divisions that demands the lion’s share of attention.
While HBO doesn’t have competition from Showtime, for the second week in a row it doesn’t look like it has the best fight of the night. For the second week in a row, boxing fans can look below the Featherweight line for a contest with the shine of a gem.
These are the picks of the week.
Pick It: #1 Brian Viloria vs. #3 Tyson Marquez (Saturday, Wealth TV, PM 9 PM EST/6 PM PST)
While the winner will not be the lineal champion of the division, they will be seen by many as “the man.” They will also have secured a piece of history, engaging in the first unification match at Flyweight since the title slit in 1965. If they commit to the sort of violence they are capable of, this could be a classic. Viloria (31-3, 18 KO) has risen from the ashes of a stoppage loss to the limited Carlos Tamara to make the best run of his career. The WBO titlist meets his match in the younger Tyson Marquez (34-2, 25 KO) who won the WBA belt in a Fight of the Year candidate in 2011. Marquez has been stopped only once, by Nonito Donaire, and that happened above the 112 lb. line. This might go long; it might end early. Someone will be getting punched all along. The undercard featuring Roman Gonzalez (33-0, 28 KO) makes this a hardcore must-see show.
Pick HBO: #1 Antonio DeMarco vs. Adrien Broner (Saturday, HBO, PM 10 PM EST/ PST)
DeMarco (28-2-1, 21 KO) has come back nicely from a bad loss to the late Edwin Valero. His WBC Lightweight title victory over Jorge Linares was a back from the brink thriller. Now, he’s got the talented but largely untested Broner (24-0, 20 KO). This doesn’t look like a good night for DeMarco and could end up being a painfully dull decision or bad beating. We’ll hope for better and tune in anyways. Heavyweight Seth Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 KO) continues his steady progression in support of the main event.
Pick PPV: #1 Carl Froch vs. Yusaf Mack (Saturday, PPV, 3 PM EST/12 PM PST)
This looks like, for the first time in years, a stay busy fight for the IBF Super Middleweight titlist Froch (29-2, 21 KO). He could have gone softer and got away with it. While a big favorite, Froch has to be careful here. Mack (31-4-2, 17 KO) has talent, and a big punch, but has always fallen short when it counts. Fighters like that wait a lifetime for the one moment where they land the right shot and it sticks. Mack will never have a better chance. This could sneak up as a firefight. Froch has a big money rematch with Lucian Bute on the line.
Back in seven.
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Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene and a member of the Transnational Boxing Ratings Board, the Yahoo Pound for Pound voting panel, and the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at [email protected]