Saturday, September 30, 2023  |



Broner says rivals running scared

Fighters Network

Former WBO junior lightweight titleholder Adrien Broner believes that opponents are afraid to fight him due to the fact that he has yet to secure a rival for his return to the ring on Oct. 6 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

Broner (24-0, 20 knockouts) is expected to make his lightweight debut on the card, which is slated to include heavyweight prospect Seth “Mayhem” Mitchell (25-0-1, 19 KOs) against Johnathon Banks (28-1-1, 18 KOs) as well as welterweight puncher Keith Thurman (18-0, 17 KOs).

Thurman has been confirmed for the card, according to Golden Boy Promotions’ matchmaker Robert Diaz, although he, like Broner, does not yet have an opponent.

“Man, don’t nobody want to sign on that dotted line to hang themselves,” said Broner, who turned 23 on July 28 and has knocked out his past four opponents. “Don’t nobody want to grab that rope to hang themselves, man.”

Broner is coming off last month’s fifth-round knockout of Vicente Escobedo that was contested over the junior lightweight limit because Broner missed weight by 3 1/2 pounds, an infraction that cost him his WBO belt at the scales.

“Anybody can get it,” said Broner. “Everybody that’s anybody can get it. But at the end of the day, the results are always going to be the same.”

Roman “Rocky” Martinez (25-1-1, 16 KOs) will face Mexico’s Miguel Beltran Jr. (27-1, 17 KOs) for the belt that formerly belonged to Broner, with the winner to be challenged by Mexico’s Juan Carlos Burgos (30-1, 20 KOs), according to WBO President Francisco “PacoValcarcel.

Martinez-Beltran is to be contested on the Sept. 15 undercard of an HBO Pay Per View-televised main event featuring RING middleweight champion Sergio Martinez (49-2-2, 28 knockouts) and WBC beltholder Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., (46-0-1, 32 KOs), according to Top Rank CEO Bob Arum, who is promoting the show.

Thurman, of Clearwater, Fla., is coming off a a sixth-round stoppage of Orlando Lora on the Broner-Escobedo card from the U.S. Bank Arena in Broner’s hometown of Cincinnati.

Photo by Naoki Fukuda

Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]