Roundup (May 18, 2019): Wilder-Breazeale, WBSS, JCC Jr, more
Kind of a slow news day overall, but we’ve got a big Saturday of fights coming.
Miss anything Friday? Catch up!
All of Saturday’s title fights are set, and we’ve got five (5) of ‘em across various platforms.
There was a little drama on the scales in Glasgow, as Josh Taylor was just barely over 140 on his first weigh-in, after which he’d started to rehydrate before someone told him. Anyway, he got to 140 for his fight with Ivan Baranchyk. Naoya Inoue and Emmanuel Rodriguez were fine for their bantamweight bout, both fights World Boxing Super Series tournament semifinals. We’ll have live coverage at 2:00 pm ET via DAZN, and our staff made their picks on Friday.
Deontay Wilder came in a bit heavier than he has recently for his WBC heavyweight title defense against Dominic Breazeale, and Gary Russell Jr and Kiko Martinez were on-point for their WBC featherweight title bout on the same card. We’ll have live coverage at 9:00 pm ET via Showtime, with prelim coverage starting at 6:30 via live stream. Our staff made their picks for Wilder-Breazeale, too, but we didn’t figure it was worth writing paragraphs on Russell-Martinez, no offense.
Billy Joe Saunders and Shefat Isufi are set in Stevenage, England, too, with the vacant WBO super middleweight title at stake. We’ll have live coverage for that show, but our focus will be on the WBSS at the same time. Saunders-Isufi coverage starts at 2:30 pm ET via ESPN+.
- The biggest and no doubt best story of Saturday otherwise is the possibility of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr being part of the Pacquiao-Thurman pay-per-view undercard on July 20. Chavez (50-3-1, 32 KO) has not fought since his incredibly spirited decision loss to Canelo Alvarez in their huge all-Mexico showdown on Cinco de Mayo weekend in 2017, but his much-anticipated return to action has been rumored several times since, including the possibility of a rematch with Sergio Martinez, which everyone wants to see.
- Oh, and there could be a WBC bantamweight title fight between Nordine Oubaali and Luis Nery on that show, too.
- We had some action on Friday. In Belfast, former bantamweight titleholder Ryan Burnett returned with a win over Jelbirt Gomera, who didn’t like body shots, and Marco McCullough scored a sneaky GOOM against Declan Geraghty. Later on UFC Fight Pass from Foxwoods in Connecticut, 140-pound prospect Mykquan Williams stayed undefeated, but 126-pound prospect Irvin Gonzalez did not, getting wrecked out in three by Elijah Pierce. Marco Huck and Toka Kahn Clary fought on the latter card, too.
- Deontay Wilder has said the same things a million times in the past, but this time around every news outlet has decided to pick up on it, probably because he made clear he means it in an ESPN interview, and that attention has made him say it again and again. Long story short, if you haven’t followed Wilder lately or over the years, he’s repeatedly stated his desire to kill an opponent in the ring. He kinda did it after the presser on Thursday, saying “the least I could do is pay for (Breazeale’s) funeral.” The WBC, those paragons of righteousness, say they’ll address it at a hearing, which, whatever. Give Dillian Whyte his title shot or kick rocks, dorks. Wilder’s stance is he can say whatever the hell he wants, which is true. He can. But that comes with everyone else being able to respond as they see fit.
- Devin Haney did a media workout to talk about his upcoming May 25 DAZN main event.
Reminder: No news roundup post on Sunday, as we’ll be going over the fallout from all the Saturday fights, but there will be a roundup of all the week’s notable results at 6 am ET on Sunday morning.