LAS VEGAS – The same experienced, predictable, proven panel of judges have been assigned to the next two main events in Las Vegas.
The Nevada State Athletic Commission approved Nevada’s Tim Cheatham, Oklahoma’s David Sutherland and New Jersey’s Steve Weisfeld as the three judges for the Shakur Stevenson-Edwin De Los Santos and David Benavidez-Demetrius Andrade fights Tuesday morning at its monthly meeting in Las Vegas. Cheatham, Sutherland and Weisfeld are commonly considered among boxing’s best judges and are used regularly for high-profile fights in Las Vegas.
The NSAC also sanctioned New Jersey’s Harvey Dock as the referee for the Stevenson-De Los Santos bout. California’s Thomas Taylor will be the third man in the ring for Benavidez-Andrade.
Stevenson (20-0, 10 KOs), a two-weight world champion from Newark, New Jersey, and the Dominican Republic’s De Los Santos (16-1, 14 KOs) are scheduled to fight Thursday night at T-Mobile Arena. Their 12-round, 135-pound fight for the vacant WBC lightweight title will headline a two-bout broadcast by ESPN that is scheduled to start at 10:30 p.m. ET (7:30 p.m. PT).
Mexico’s Emanuel Navarrete (38-1, 31 KOs) will defend his WBO junior lightweight title against Brazil’s Robson Conceicao (17-2, 8 KOs, 1 NC) in the 12-round, 130-pound championship bout that will open ESPN’s telecast. The NSAC approved California’s Max De Luca, Arizona’s Chris Flores and Connecticut’s Don Trella as the judges and Taylor as the referee for the Navarrete-Conceicao contest.
Phoenix’s Benavidez (27-0, 23 KOs) will defend his WBC interim super middleweight title against Andrade (32-0, 19 KOs), a southpaw from Providence, Rhode Island, on November 25. Benavidez-Andrade will be the 12-round main event of a four-fight Showtime Pay-Per-View telecast from Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino’s Michelob ULTRA Arena.
Also Tuesday, the NSAC assigned Sutherland, Trella and Weisfeld to judge the 12-round, 140-pound title bout between Puerto Rico’s Subriel Matias (19-1, 19 KOs) and Uzbekistan’s Shohjahon Ergashev (23-0, 20 KOs) on the Benavidez-Andrade undercard. Nevada’s Celestino Ruiz will be the referee for Matias-Ergashev, which will be contested for Matias’ IBF junior middleweight title.
Cheatham, De Luca and Nevada’s Robert Hoyle were the judges approved for the opener of the Benavidez-Andrade pay-per-view show – a 12-round, 130-pound championship clash in which the Dominican Republic’s Hector Luis Garcia (16-1, 10 KOs, 1 NC) will battle Lamont Roach (23-1-1, 9 KOs), of Upper Marlboro, Maryland, for Garcia’s WBA super featherweight title. Nevada’s Tony Weeks will be the referee for Garcia-Roach.
Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.