You’re probably aware that we usually start these schedules with non-boxing related videos. But god dammit, we’re excited about Mike Alvardo vs. Ruslan Provodnikov this weekend. Look at that water flying off the fighters. Why is there water? Stop asking uncomfortable questions. It looks cool and gets the people going, OK?
There are other things happening as well, would you believe? The replay of Timothy Bradley’s win over Juan Manuel Marquez last weekend, for example, and the debut of one of HBO’s “2 Days” mini-documentaries, this time on featherweight (now junior lightweight) Mikey Garcia. Of course there are also other fights, though none of them hold the promise that Alvarado vs. Provodnikov does (it would be hard).
- Mike Alvarado vs. Ruslan Provodnikov, Saturday, HBO, Denver. These junior welterweights are just bad, bad dudes. I mean, I’m sure they’re perfectly nice in person, but they’ve proven time and again that they’re willing throw caution to the wind and fight in a way that suggests they have little concern for their own safety. Tim will have a full preview later in the week, but here’s my short analysis. If Alvarado (34-1, 23 KO) is to win, he’ll need to box a little like he did in his victory over Brandon Rios. If Provodnikov (22-2, 15 KO) is to win, he’ll need turn it into a wild brawl and break Alvarado morally. I see this ending sometime around round 6, either with Alvardo dripping blood or Provodnikov stopped on his feet. Don’t really want to hazard a guess either way. On the undercard, Juan Diaz (37-4, 19 KO) continues his comeback against Denver native Juan Santiago (14-10-1, 8 KO). Santiago is a pretty rudimentary boxer, so it should be a showcase for Diaz, who’ll be able to get in close under Santiago’s reaching shots and unload. Whether “The Baby Bull” wil be able to get the stoppage is the real question, considering his lack of power. Also, when you’re 30 years old, at what point do you stop being known as “The Baby Bull” and just become “The Bull?”
- The Rest. Thursday brings a card from Melbourne, Australia, headlined by light heavyweight prospect Blake Caparello (17-0-1, 6 KO), who’s taking on Allan Green (32-4, 22 KO). I wouldn’t normally get excited for an Allan Green fight, but this is a huge step up for Caparello, so who knows what will happen… Then on Saturday there are fights on Fox Deportes from Mexico City, featuring the likes of junior welterweights Roberto Ortiz (29-0-1, 23 KO) and Reyes Sanchez (24-5-2, 14 KO). Erik Morales’ little bro Ivan is also fighting on the undercard… Super middleweight titlist Robert Stieglitz (45-3, 26 KO) is fighting in Germany the same night, against Isaac Ekpo (22-1, 16 KO) of Nigeria… Junior featherweight Carl Frampton (16-0, 11 KO) looks to continue on his winning way against Jeremy Parodi (35-1-1, 9 KO) at home in Belfast on Saturday night. It’d be nice to see Frampton step up the competition a notch, as he impressed against Kiko Martinez and no doubt will do here… Undefeated and much-hyped Dominican prospect Javier Fortuna fights off TV in the Dominican Republic, also Saturday… And finally (and on the same night as all the rest) Panamanian flyweight/Paulie D impersonator Luis Concepcion (29-3, 21 KO) fights the awesomely named Carlos Ruben Dario Ruiz (17-2, 10 KO) in Panama City.