By Lem Satterfield
Lightweight contender Brandon Rios got a huge break on Monday. Rios was notified by his trainer, Robert Garcia, that he would replace the injured Kelly Pavlik on the HBO-pay-per-view undercard to Manny Pacquiao vs. Antonio Margarito, scheduled to take place on November 13 at Cowboys Stadium in Arlington, Texas. Pavlik officially withdrew on Monday with a rib injury.
Top Rank had originally booked Rios to fight on their December 4 event in Anaheim, California. Rios had planned to sit ringside at Cowboys Stadium in support of his stablemate Margarito, but now he gets a career boost by appearing on the actual card. Because Rios was informed while training for a fight nearly a month away, his bout next Saturday night will likely be at a catch-weight of 138 or 140.
"I was going to the fight anyway to be at ringside, so I'm really excited. I do this for a living, so I'm not nervous. I'm ready. I'm always ready. Whatever comes along, I'm okay and I'm ready. I don't know who my opponent is going to be. I don't know if it's going to be the guy that I was going to fight on Dec. 4 or somebody else. But whoever it is, we're ready for it. It's not like I haven't been training. I've been in the gym," said Rios.
Rios is hoping an impressive performance on such a big stage will put him in line for much bigger opportunities - including a fight with the winner of Juan Manuel Marquez vs. Michael Katsidis, which takes place on November 27.
"I think that I've already shown the world that I'm no joke by beating Anthony Peterson, and I'm ready to take on those types of fighters like Humberto Soto and Marquez and Katsidis. "I'm ready for those types of fights. I just hope that they give me a chance. Maybe Juan Manuel Marquez will give me a chance," said Rios.
"I think that I have proven myself and that I have put myself in position for those types of fights, and I'm just ready to make some noise in the lightweight division. I'm ready for all of the big guys."
Lem Satterfield is the boxing editor at AOL FanHouse and the news editor at BoxingScene.com. To read more from Lem Satterfield, go to AOL FanHouse by Clicking Here .