Sticking with the theme from last week’s schedule, here’s a two minute video of movie characters saying “son of a bitch.” As usual, the heading video has nothing to do with the schedule, despite my occasional attempt to make a tenuous connection.
Like this: It’s almost, but not quite, the kind of week that will have you saying “son of a bitch” when you’re looking for some boxing to watch. Yeah, that was terrible. Anyway, Mikkel Kessler is finally returning to action and there’s some fun to be seen on Friday Night Fights, as well as the usual global goings on.
- Karim Mayfield vs. Raymond Serrano, Friday, ESPN2, Albany N.Y. The capital of the Empire State hosts this interesting match up between limited junior welterweight prospects Mayfield and Serrano on Friday. To me, this is a good FNF fight – neither of the undefeated protagonists will ever be elite, but they’ll test each other and hopefully entertain in the process. Mayfield (15-0-1) has had weird career arc. He’s 30, which is pretty damn old for an undefeated prospect with 16 fights and no extensive amateur background to speak of, but he’s been a sparring partner for Manny Pacquiao, Antonio Margarito and others. He’s also trained by last year’s Boxing Writers Association of America Trainer of the Year, Virgil Hunter. I can’t really see what all that adds up to, though, because though Mayfield is an OK boxer and hits hardish, he isn’t exceptional, is there to be hit and tends to tie up a lot on the inside. Philadelphia’s Serrano (18-0) doesn’t have any of the advantages that Mayfield has. To me, that makes his unimpressiveness much more explicable. His high knockout ratio belies the competition he has been facing – he’s no Roberto Duran. Still, despite their limitations, Mayfield and Serrano should make a pretty good fight. Mayfield will likely play the aggressor in a fun bout that goes the distance due to both guys’ solid conditioning.
- Mikkel Kessler vs. Allan Green, Saturday, Copenhagen. Former Showtime Super Six participants Kessler and Green never faced each other in the tournament, so are making up for that fact with a dust up at light heavyweight. Denmark’s Kessler (44-2) has been injury prone late in his career, withdrawing from the Super Six and a fight with Robert Stieglitz. “The Viking Warrior” was at one time one of the twenty best fighters in the whole sport, but it’s hard to know how much he has left after said injuries and a lengthy period of inactivity. Green (31-3) probably isn’t the person to test him. He lost both his fights in the Super Six, getting embarrassingly schooled by Andre Ward (as was Kessler) and knocked out by Glen Johnson. The tall, athletic Oklahoman’s problem has never been physical limitations but rather a lack of mental fortitude. His body language is the opposite of confident, he often stares at his feet and when knocked out by Johnson, his main concern seemed to be complaining to the referee rather than getting to his feet. Still, he’s long complained that he’s drained at super middleweight (despite continuing to fight there) so maybe the move up in weight will give him a new lease on life. But I doubt it. Look for Kessler to start hitting Green with hard, accurate straight punches and for Green to not like it at all. I’m going with Kessler by TKO, and hopefully he will make some noise at the newly exciting LHW division after that.
- The Rest. 24/7 returns to HBO (and CNN) on Saturday night with the first installment of the series for June’s Manny Pacquio/Timothy Bradley fight. We’ve seen and heard pretty much everything about Pacquiao, but Bradley could be interesting. Maybe… On Friday night TeleFutura is broadcasting a junior welterweight bout between prospect Mauricio Pintor (17-0) and Ivan Cano (20-4) from Mexico City… Also Friday, top junior lightweight Argenis Mendez (19-2) stays busy at lightweight against Hector Velazquez (51-17-3) in Hollywood, Florida… Saturday brings a match-up between top ten junior bantamweights Juan Carlos Sanchez Jr. (13-1-1) and Juan Alberto Rosas (36-6) in Puerto Vallarta, Mexico…S aturday also brings a showdown for the British heavyweight crown between up and comer David Price (12-0), coming off an impressive showing over veteran John McDermott, and Sam Sexton (15-2)… There’s also a gofightlive.tv card from Delaware (Delaware!) on Friday and one from Atlantic City on Saturday. Neither card features anybody in particular.