By Keith Idec
Kendall Holt understands injuries occur and fights get canceled or postponed, but the former WBO junior welterweight champion is still aggravated over the cancellation Thursday of his Jan. 24 fight against Javier Molina.
The 32-year-old Holt (28-6, 16 KOs), of Paterson, N.J., and the 24-year-old Molina (14-1, 6 KOs), a 2008 Olympian from Norwalk, Calif., were scheduled to square off in an ESPN2 main event in two weeks in Shelton, Wash. Molina suffered a hand injury Wednesday during training that’ll require surgery Tuesday and their 10-round welterweight fight was canceled.
His fight against Molina was to be Holt’s first since IBF junior welterweight champion Lamont Peterson (32-2-1, 16 KOs) stopped him in the eighth round of their title fight last Feb. 22 in Washington, D.C.
“It’s always disappointing when you train as hard as I trained for this fight to have it canceled, especially this close to the fight,” said Holt, who’s working without a promoter. “You’re running five, six miles a day in the cold and sparring, and then you get nothing out of it. That’s boxing, I guess.
“But what makes it worse is that they didn’t find someone else for me to fight. No one even called [Thursday] to tell me the fight was off. A friend of mine texted me to say he was sorry that my fight was canceled. I said, ‘My fight’s canceled? What are you talking about?’ He said he saw it on the Internet. That’s how I found out.”
Promoter Dan Goossen, whose company represents Molina and is promoting the Jan. 24 card, replaced the Holt-Molina match with a 10-round bout between unbeaten light heavyweight prospect Thomas Williams Jr. (15-0, 10 KOs), of Fort Washington, Md., and Houston’s Cornelius White (21-2, 16 KOs) as the main event of a “Friday Night Fights” telecast from Little Creek Casino Resort.
“Upon the news of Javier being injured, our first objective was to try and keep Kendall in the main event,” Goossen stated in an email. “Unfortunately Tom Brown, our matchmaker, could not find a suitable replacement on such short notice to offer to Kendall. And because of the time constraints, a main event had to be scheduled.”
Keith Idec covers boxing for The Record and Herald News, of Woodland Park, N.J., and BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.