Unlike last week, this is a rather slow one in the world of boxing. However, a few decent fights on Mexican TV stations provide a good opportunity to brush up on your Spanish and see a few potential up and comers.
What: Emilio Sanchez vs Christopher Martin, FeatherweightsWhen: August 10
How to Watch: Estrella TV, 10 PM ET
Why You Should Care: Because Emilio Sanchez is a hard-hitting prospect who’s been knocked out by worse fighters than Martin.
Emilio Sanchez is a Golden Boy promoted prospect known for his punching power and relentless pressure. He had a very impressive amateur career, highlighted by winning the US Junior National Championship in Denver in 2009. With a 15-0 record featuring 10 knockouts, Sanchez was heading to stardom. Then he got knocked out in a shocking upset loss to an unheralded 12-5 Filipino named Eugene Lagos.
Christopher Martin was once the WBO NABO Super Bantamweight champion of the world and, more importantly, never the lead singer of mediocre mom-rock band Coldplay. However, after working his way to a record of 23-0, the onetime title holder has fallen on hard times. In his last 11 fights, he is 3- 8. This fight is clearly intended to restore Sanchez’s confidence against a shot fighter, but we’ve seen Sanchez get knocked out before to fighters who were never close to as good as Martin once was.
What: Daniel Lozano vs. Ricardo Espinoza, BantamweightsWhen: August 10
How to Watch: Telemundo, 11:35 PM ET
Why You Should Care: Because Lozano has a new motivation, and Espinoza might actually be good
Just last year, Daniel Lozano was caring for his mother who was in the midst of a battle with cancer. Upon his return to boxing, the fighter who dropped three straight fights in a row in 2015 had a renewed focus, just like what carried Buster Douglas to knockout Mike Tyson, he was going to win a title for his mom. Since that declaration, he is 2-0.
But, Ricardo Espinoza might be good. The man from boxing hotbed Tijuana Mexico is 20-2, and has knocked out seventeen of his opponents, including his last seven in a row and appears to be improving as a fighter. However, his opposition has been absolute garbage, I would call them Tijuana cab drivers but I’m not sure if Uber has taken over that city. Either way, there’s no real way to see if he is any good until we see him in the ring with a good, motivated fighter. Luckily, that’s what we have on Friday night.
What: Hairon Socarras vs Jose Nieves, FeatherweightsWhen: August 10
How to Watch: Telemundo, 11:35 PM ET
Why You Should Care: To see what Socarras’ Cuban Fusion style looks like.
Hairon Socarras is technically a Cuban fighter. However, while we’ve seen the Cuban style that has been honed for years in the Cuban amateur system, that is not what Socarras brings to the table. See, as a child Socarras was trained and flourished in the Cuban amateur system, but came to the United States at age 7 and began training in Miami at 11. As a result, Socarras is now a unique fusion in that he was brought up and flourished in the famed Cuban amateur system but has also trained in the United States for years. As a pro, he is 18-0 with 12 knockouts.
This unique style will be put to the test against the very capable Puerto Rican, 22-4 Jose Nieves. Nieves is coming off of back to back losses, but the two opponents who beat him were 31-1. Sometimes fusion creates new unique concepts, and sometimes the results just do not work. This fight will decide which Mr. Socarras is destined to be.
What: Jesus Rojas vs. Joseph Diaz Jr., FeatherweightsWhen: August 11
How to Watch: Facebook, 10PM
Why You Should Care: Because these guys are way too good to be stuck on Facebook.
Jesus Rojas is the WBA featherweight champion. The 31-year-old Puerto Rican has not lost in ten years, and sports a 26-1 record. Joseph “Jojo” Diaz is 25, represented the USA in the 2012 Olympics, and is also 26-1 with his only loss coming to Gary Russell Jr.
These records are not padded, both of these guy have faced legitimate competition like Russell, Jorge Arce, Victor Terrazas. This is a very good fight, and one that deserved to be on HBO, Showtime or ESPN. One of these guys may well be one the future of the featherweight division, and it’s a shame to see them stuck on what may end up (but probably won’t be) the future of broadcasting live sports.