Advertisement
Advertisement
Boxingscene.com

Velasco: Pressure's On Prograis; I'll Prove the Experts Wrong

By Keith Idec

Regis Prograis acknowledged Wednesday that there’s more pressure on him than usual entering his fight Saturday night.

The powerful Prograis will fight in his hometown of New Orleans for the first time as a professional fighter. The card he’ll headline at Lakefront Arena is built entirely around Prograis and he has the opportunity to box before the biggest viewing audience of his six-year career on ESPN.

“There are way more distractions [fighting at home], but it’s part of the game,” Prograis said. “You gotta do it. It’s part of my job.”

Juan Jose Velasco feels no such stress.

prograis-velasco (2)

The unknown Argentinean contender will fight for just the second time in the United States. He’s a huge underdog against Prograis (21-0, 18 KOs), unbeaten but just the type of low-profile opponent who’s supposed to help Prograis look good before his hometown crowd.

It’s a role Velasco (20-0, 12 KOs) is enjoying as he prepares to pull off an upset in their 12-round, 140-pound championship match.

“The pressure is not an issue for me,” Velasco said. “The pressure is on Regis. I’m not expected to do much, which is fine by me. I’ll prove the experts wrong.

“I feel like everyone is pulling for him, that it’s a gimme fight for Regis. Everyone can talk, but on Saturday, he’ll have to fight.”

Prograis fought very well March 9. That’s the night he knocked down former IBF/IBO/WBA champ Julius Indongo four times on his way to recording a second-round, technical-knockout victory and winning the WBC’s interim 140-pound championship in Deadwood, South Dakota.

His homecoming is emotional for the 29-year-old Prograis because he and his family evacuated New Orleans during Hurricane Katrina in September 2005. He relocated to Houston, where he still resides.

The defending WBC interim super lightweight champion grew up near Lakefront Arena, a venue he visited for various events when he was a kid. A spot in the World Boxing Super Series’ lucrative 140-pound tournament also is at stake in the Prograis-Velasco clash.

ESPN’s two-bout broadcast is set to start Saturday at 7 p.m. ET/4 p.m. PT. In the opener, highly touted lightweight prospect Teofimo Lopez (9-0, 7 KOs) is scheduled to box Brazil’s William Silva (25-1, 14 KOs) in a 10-rounder.

Following ESPN’s main event between Prograis and Velasco, ESPN+ will stream two more fights live, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. In that main event, Argentina’s Lucas Matthysse (39-4, 36 KOs, 1 NC) will defend his WBA world welterweight title against Filipino legend Manny Pacquiao (59-7-2, 38 KOs) at Axiata Arena in Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.

Keith Idec is a senior writer/columnist for BoxingScene.com. He can be reached on Twitter @Idecboxing.

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Post a Comment - View More User Comments (0)
Top Headlines Fury: Deontay Wilder is Tailor-Made For Me, I'll Make Him Pay! Golden Boy Prez: Canelo-GGG is One Our Most Complete PPVs Yuriorkis Gamboa vs. Miguel Beltran in Play For November 10 Lennox Lewis Backs Fury To Rise To The Occasion With Wilder Borrego vs. Krael Tops Mayweather Card on September 22 Errol Spence vs. Mikey Garcia Tabled For 2019? Miguel Marriaga Renews Pact With All Star Boxing Ergashev: I Want Brandon Rios - I'd Break Him in Half! Danny Garcia: I Just Feel Like Thurman's Not Hungry Anymore Golovkin: It's About Entertaining Fans, So I Fight Mexican Style Fernando Montiel Hopes To Have a Farewell Fight To End Career Morales, Barrera Urge That Canelo Must Beat GGG For Legacy Jennings-Dimitrenko ESPN Double Averaged 686,000 Viewers David Price: Sean Turner Is The Right Fight For Me Yenifel Vicente, Arnold Khegai Secure Knockout Wins World Boxing Super Series To Stage Second Cruiser Tourney Pedraza: I Would Love To Fight Lomachenko Unification Next! Porter is Firm That 'Tremendous' Errol Spence Fight Will Happen Saunders: Canelo Doesn't Deserve Rematch; Hope GGG KOs Him Warren: Wilder-Fury is Really Big - On Level of Lewis vs. Tyson TJ Doheny: With My Team, My Ability - I Can Beat Anyone at 122 Atif Shafiq Gearing Up For Andy Townend Showdown Pintor Backs Canelo To Shock Gennady Golovkin in Rematch Wilder: Once I Beat Fury, Fans Must Pressure Joshua To Fight Me Filip Hrgovic vs. Amir Mansour on September 8, Cornish Out Khan vs. Vargas Card: Steven Donnelly, Sean McComb Added Shawn Porter Celebrates Arrival of 'Peak Week' For Danny Garcia Wilder: Joshua, Hearn Degraded Me - $15 Mill & No Percentage! Video: Joe Cortez Talks Wilder vs. Fury and Canelo vs. GGG Video: David Benavidez Talks Dirrell, Ramirez, Uzcatguei Video: Al Bernstein Discusses Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury Cristofer Gonzalez: It Would Be an Honor To Face Sor Rungvisai Abel Sanchez: By End of 2019, Joyce Ready For Wilder, Joshua O'Sullivan: I'll Smash Through Lemieux - Canelo or GGG Next! Tyson Fury May Train in Big Bear For Deontay Wilder Clash Devin Haney vs. Juan Carlos Burgos - ShoBox Triple is Official Canelo vs. Golovkin Rematch - Undercard Officially Announced Tyson Fury Explodes on Dillian Whyte in War of Words Joshua Greer Inks Promotional Pact With Top Rank Hatton: Wilder is Technically Not That Good, Fury Wins on Points
Advertisement

Latest Active Forum Threads
Advertisement
Advertisement