Sunday, April 02, 2023  |



Weekend Preview: Did Arreola train?

Fighters Network


Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / heavyweights
Location: Ontario, Calif.
Television: ESPN2
The backdrop: Arreola (28-2, 25 KOs) lost to Vitali Klitschko and Tomasz Adamek within the past 11 months but his most-difficult foe might be himself. The Los Angeles-area product acknowledges that he doesn’t train properly, which prevents him from realizing his potential. He apparently missed half his sparring sessions going into the Adamek fight because of personal issues. “People have personal problems but they still show up for work,” said Darryl Hudson, Arreola's frustrated personal trainer. Has Arreola turned over a new leaf? He swears he missed only two days of training for this fight, which would be a step in the right direction, but we’ll believe it when we see it. Quezada (29-5, 18 KOs), a tough, but limited journeyman, probably couldn’t beat Arreola if he didn’t train at all but won’t roll over. Shawn Estrada, a 2008 U.S. Olympian, fights for the second time since returning from a 14-month layoff because of injuries.
Also fighting: Josesito Lopez vs. Marvin Cordova, eight rounds, welterweights; Shawn Estrada vs. Alex Armenta, four rounds, super middleweights.
Rating the card: B. Arreola is fun to watch whether he trains or not, although the fight probably won’t be too competitive. And Estrada adds a little spice to the card.

Rounds / weight class: Eight rounds / junior lightweights
Location: Pico Rivera, Calif.
Television: Telefutura
The backdrop: Perez (17-0-2, 4 KOs) is an aggressive counterpuncher with a nice jab and throws effective combinations but has no power. The resident of Salinas, Calif., is on a nice streak, nine consecutive victories overly decent opposition. He is coming off a majority decision over capable Gilberto Sanchez Leon in May. Campos (20-8, 11 KOs) might be a step down. The Topeka, Kansas, fighter has lost his last two fights, although both were by decision. Carlos Molina (12-0, 6 KOs) is a talented, fun-to-watch prospect from Rosemead, Calif.
Also fighting: Carlos Molina vs. Glenn Gonzales, eight rounds, junior welterweights.
Rating the card: C. Perez comes to fight but wins by decision, not knockout, and Campos probably will be in over his head. Molina could steal the show.

Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / welterweights
Location: Tampa, Fla.
Television: Telemundo
The backdrop: Zepeda (39-13-4, 34 KOs) is a big puncher but not a big winner. He’s only 2-5 in his last seven fights, including four KO losses. He’s fun to watch, though, which is probably why he’s being featured on the telecast. Pabon (14-1, 8 KOs) is a skillful prospect from Puerto Rico who is returning from a 1¾-year layoff. He, too, is an action fighter, which means this could be a very entertaining matchup even if the skill level isn’t particularly high. We predict a knockout.
Also fighting: Luis Franco vs. Yogli Herrera, eight rounds, featherweights.
Rating the card: B-. The main event gets an “A” for potential action but C- for quality of fighters.


Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / light heavyweights
Location: Montreal
Television: HBO
The backdrop: No. 1-rated Dawson (29-0, 17 KOs) and No. 2 Pascal (25-1, 16 KOs) will be fighting for the vacant RING magazine 175-pound championship. Dawson, from New Haven, Conn., is one of the sport’s brightest young stars. He has two victories over Glen Johnson, two over Antonio Tarver and one over Tomasz Adamek in his last seven fights, an impressive run. He’s not the most-exciting fighter but his blend of fine-tuned skill and unusual athleticism make him very difficult to beat. Pascal, from Montreal, also is an excellent boxer with a good resume. He has two victories over Adrian Diacanu but also lost to Carl Froch in a super middleweight title fight. The Haitian probably will have an advantage fighting in his adopted home country. Dawson, on everybody’s pound-for-pound list, is favored but Pascal certainly is no pushover.
Also fighting: Tony Luis vs. Adrian Verdugo, eight rounds, lightweights.
Rating the card: A-. The main event probably won’t resemble Gatti-Ward but the skill level will be very high, which boxing purists will appreciate.

Rounds / weight class: 12 rounds / lightweight
Location: Laredo, Texas
Television: Fox Sports Net / Fox Sports en Espanol
The backdrop: Kim (21-5, 18 KOs) is an exciting, big-punching prospect from South Korea who started his career slowly but is on an impressive roll. He has knocked out his last 11 opponents and has won 13 in a row. He’ll be fighting for his first major title against his toughest opponent. Vazquez (25-3, 12 KOs) is a big, strong lightweight with solid boxing skills, which gives him a competitive edge in this fight. The Mexican has lost only to Saul Alvarez (twice) and Timothy Bradley. A featherweight fight between Miguel Angel Garcia and Cornelius Lock is a title eliminator.
Also fighting: Miguel Angel Garcia vs. Cornelius Lock, 12 rounds, featherweights.
Rating the card: B+. Kim is wild man, the kind of fighter fans love. And Vazquez has a legitimate chance of winning. Something has to give. The Garcia-Lock fight also is an interesting fight. Garcia (22-0, 18 KOs) is unbeaten but hasn’t faced anyone as good as Lock.

Also on Saturday: Anselmo Moreno defends his bantamweight title against Nehomar Cerme├▒o in Panama City, Panama; Donnie Nietes defends his strawweight title against Mario Rodriguez in Guasave, Mexico; and former heavyweight titleholder Hasim Rahman faces Damon Reed in a 10-round bout in Norfolk, Va.