By Rick Reeno
BoxingScene.com has been advised that a deal is nearly complete for a Las Vegas doubleheader on February 17th.
In the main event, former two division champion Danny Garcia (33-1, 19 KOs) will finally make his return to the ring, against another former champion, Brandon Rios (34-3-1, 25 KOs).
Garcia, 29 years old, has been out of the ring since March of this year, when he lost a close twelve round split decision to Keith Thurman in their highly anticipated welterweight unification clash at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
The World Boxing Council was looking order a final world title eliminator between Garcia and Shawn Porter, but it never went down after Garcia's team had little interest. Porter would go on to beat Adrien Granados to secure a rematch with Thurman in 2018.
Rios, only 31 years old, officially ended a short-lived retirement in June when he knocked out Aaron Herrera in seven rounds.
He announced his retirement following a knockout loss to Timothy Bradley in November of 2015, but then changed his mind shortly after. However, Rios' ring return was delayed as he made several big changes in his career - like parting ways with longtime promoter Top Rank and longtime trainer Robert Garcia.
The other part of the doubleheader, is the rematch between WBC super middleweight champion David Benavidez and challenger Ronald Gavril (18-2, 14 KOs).
In September, Benavidez (19-0, 17 KOs) got off the floor in the twelfth and final round to win a close twelve round split decision over Gavril to win the vacant WBC title at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas.
There was some controversy in the aftermath, as the contest was very close but there were two wide scorecards (117-111, 116-111) in favor of Benavidez. The third judge had it 116-111 for Gavril.
The WBC wants to see Benavidez and Gavril do it again, and they are going to do it again.
Both the MGM Grand and the Mandalay Bay are being under consideration as potential venues to host the card. Garcia has fought several times in both venues. And Rios headlined two events at the Mandalay Bay.