Monday, May 29, 2023  |



Pavlik vs. Mora?

Fighters Network

Kelly Pavlik reportedly is near a deal to defend his RING middleweight championship against former junior middleweight titleholder Sergio Mora in June or July in Atlantic City, N.J.

Pavlik is coming off a ninth-round knockout of Marco Antonio Rubio last month, Pavlik’s first fight since his one-sided loss to Bernard Hopkins in November.

Mora (21-1-1, five knockouts) is a decent fighter but it’s difficult to get excited about him.

The one-time “Contender” contestant, who has no power, narrowly outpointed Vernon Forrest to win the WBC belt primarily because Forrest took him for granted. In the rematch, a focused Forrest dominated Mora en route to an easy points victory.

The major networks, HBO and Showtime, have no interest in the televising the fight, according to It will be shown by an independent pay-per-view provider.

In Pavlik’s defense, the middleweight division is as thin as any in boxing. The only truly compelling possible opponent at 160 is Arthur Abraham, who fights Lajuan Simon on Saturday.

There might be several interesting possibilities if 154-pounders are willing to move up in weight. Forrest certainly would be a more-compelling opponent than Mora – and much more dangerous – but negotiations for that fight fell through. Paul Williams is another intriguing possibility.

The Pavlik-Mora fight will be televised in conjunction with a card in Mexico, Arum told He’s considering putting the banned Antonio Margarito on that card.