By Francisco Salazar
How appropriate the welterweight clash between Mauricio Herrera and Jesus Soto-Karass is taking place at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California.
After suffering defeats in recent fights and their best days behind them, both Herrera and Soto-Karass are all in.
Herrera and Soto-Karass are pushing their chips all in on the betting table that is the ring. Do they have any other choice?
Both fighters are hoping for one more significant payday, one more fight under the bright lights. And they enjoy the fight game to much to formally hang up their gloves for good.
Herrera and Soto-Karass will face off in a 10 round bout tonight. The bout will headline a 'Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN' telecast, which begins at 9 p.m. ET/ 6 p.m. PT.
Herrera (23-7, with 7 knockouts), who hails from nearby Riverside, was victorious in his last bout on March 23, winning a one-sided decision over Hector Velazquez.
The victory snapped a stretch of three losses in four bouts, one of which was a controversial decision loss to Jose Benavidez in December of 2014.
"I'm very excited for this fight," said the 37-year-old Herrera. "I've been working on my boxing. Something from my past fights, I've seen all the things I'd done wrong. I've woken up for this fight and I'm putting everything into this fight. I want to win."
Soto-Karass (28-11-4, with 18 KOs), who hails from the Los Angeles suburb of North Hollywood, is winless in his last four bouts.
In his last bout on September 10, Soto-Karass was stopped after the eighth round by Yoshihiro Kamegai. Prior to that fight, he fought to a split decision draw against Kamegai in an action-filled clash over 10 rounds.
"I feel very content and very enthusiastic because we are going to fight here in (Southern) California," said Soto-Karass. "I feel very happy and and very motivated to fight. The preparation has been intense, but we have done a good job. I feel very confident in the preparation we have done. Up there in the ring, everything can happen."
In the co-feature, light heavyweights Vyacheslav Shabranskyy (18-1, with 15 KOs) and Todd Unthank May (10-0-1, with 4 KOs) square off in a 10 round bout.
Four more fights will round out the Golden Boy Promotions card. ESPN3.com will begin airing preliminary action at 7:30 p.m. ET/ 4:30 p.m. PT.
Francisco A. Salazar has written for Boxingscene.com since September of 2012 and has covered boxing in Southern California and abroad since 2000. Francisco also covers boxing for the Ventura County (Calif.) Star newspaper, RingTV, and Knockout Nation. He can be reached by email at [email protected] or on Twitter at FSalazarBoxing