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Weekend Preview: Berto-Quintana is main event

08
Apr

SATURDAY

ANDRE BERTO vs. CARLOS QUINTANA
Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / welterweights
Location: Sunrise, Fla.
Television: HBO
The backdrop: Berto (25-0, 19 KOs) was supposed to have faced Shane Mosley in a fight that might’ve propelled him to stardom but pulled out because of the earthquake in Haiti, the homeland of his parents. A victory over Quintana (27-2, 21 KOs) would also enhance his reputation to some degree. The awkward southpaw from Puerto Rico is the only one to have beaten Paul Williams and has lost only to Williams in a rematch (TKO 7) and Miguel Cotto (TKO 5). Berto is making the fourth defense of the 147-pound belt he won by stopping Miguel Angel Rodriquez in 2008. The Celestino Caballero-Daug Yordan fight is an interesting slugger-vs.-boxer matchup.
Also fighting: Celestino Caballero vs. Daud Yordan, 12 rounds, featherweights. Guillermo Rigondeaux pulled out of the card.
Rating the card: B. Berto is an exciting fighter who faces a genuine challenge. This ought to be interesting.

EVANDER HOLYFIELD vs. FRANCOIS BOTHA
Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / heavyweights
Location: Las Vegas
Television: Integrated Sports pay per view
The backdrop: Holyfield (42-10-2, 27 KOs) had a little left in the tank against Sultan Ibragimov and Nikolai Valuev in his last two fights, in 2007 and ’08. However, this fight smacks of a freak show. The former multiple-time heavyweight and cruiserweight titleholder, now 47, and Botha, 41, are so far past their primes that no one can take them seriously. And it’s not even a good matchup. Holyfield probably will stop Botha early in a very ugly “fight.”
Also fighting: Henry Namauu vs. Rayford Johnson, 10 rounds, cruiserweights
Rating the card: D-. This shouldn’t be happening.

ORLANDO LORA vs. DAVID ESTRADA
Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / welterweights
Location: Rancho Mirage, Calif.
Television: ESPN2
The backdrop: Lora (26-0-1, 18 KOs) has a gaudy record but no victories over significant opponents. The Mexican lives in Culiacan, Julio Cesar Chavez’s hometown. Estrada (23-6, 14 KOs) could be Lora’s stiffest challenge. The Miami resident has lost only to well-established opponents: Ishe Smith, Shane Mosley, Kermit Cintron, Andre Berto, Jesus Soto Karass and Luis Carlos Abregu. He is 2-3 in his last five fights.
Also fighting: Victor Fonseca vs. Andre Wilson, 8 or 10 rounds, junior featherweights.
Rating the card: C. Unbeaten fighters’ have a certain allure and the fight should be competitive but it’s hard to get excited about either fighter in the main event at the moment.

NORBERTO GONZALEZ vs. MARK MELLIGEN
Rounds / weight class: 10 rounds / welterweights
Location: Las Vegas
Television: Fox Sports en Espanol and Fox Sports Net (and affiliates)
The backdrop: Both fighters are bouncing back from recent streak-ending losses. Gonazlez (18-1, 12 KOs) has won two consecutive fights since he was outpointed by Antwone Smith early last year. The Mexican is a durable action fighter. Melligen (17-2, 13 KOs) stopped then-unbeaten Raymond Gatica in his last fight after losing a split decision to Michael Rosales and his career momentum in November. Melligen, 24, is from the Philippines.
Also fighting: Diego Magdaleno vs. Manny Perez, 10 rounds, junior lightweights; Lamont Peterson vs. Damian Fuller, 10 rounds, junior welterweights.
Rating the card: C. Unbeaten fighters’ have a certain allure and the fight should be competitive but it’s hard to get excited about either fighter in the main event at the moment.

Elsewhere: Friday — Jan Zaveck defends his welterweight title against Rodolfo Ezequiel Martinez in Ljubljana, Slovenia. Saturday – Francisco Arce faces Cristian Mijares in a bantamweight title eliminator in Durango, Mexico.

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