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Jessie Vargas to face Antonio DeMarco, eyes Manny Pacquiao

Fighters Network

Jessie Vargas will be facing his third straight southpaw in Antonio DeMarco on Nov. 22 in Macao, China with the goal challenging left-hander Manny Pacquiao in the future.

“Let [Vargas] beat DeMarco first and we’ll see where we go from there. But he’s a nice kid and a good fighter and I’m very fond of the kid because he’s just such a well-spoken, polite, young man,” said Top Rank Promotions CEO Bob Arum.

“It should be a very, very good fight on an international card and it fits the demographic. We wanted an American on the undercard and we have Vargas and he’s going against a Mexican in DeMarco…we’re very proud of the card.”

Vargas (25-0, 9 knockouts) is being matched with DeMarco (31-3-1, 23 KOs) in support of a WBO welterweight title defense by Pacquiao against rising WBO 140-pound beltholder Chris Algieri at the Cotai Arena at the Venetian Macao.

“There’s a reason why I’m facing the three southpaws in a row and I hope to give an exciting performance,” said Vargas, 25. “That way, after this big victory that I plan on winning, I’ll get another big fight with the strongest and biggest left-hander that there is.”

Vargas reeled off consecutive unanimous decision wins over previously unbeaten fighters Khabib Allakhverdiev and Anton Novikov in April and August, respectively.

“My last two opponents have been undefeated and they’ve both been lefties, so this will be my third [southpaw] in a row,” said Vargas, who is managed by Cameron Dunkin. “Usually, guys don’t like fighting southpaws but my promoter wants me to do it, so I’m happy because I know that my promoter is looking to the future, so I take it how it comes.”

Vargas-Allakhverdiev took place in support of Pacquiao’s unanimous decision over Tim Bradley.

“[Pacquiao] happens to be on this same card and I was on the same card with him in April, so I’ll get to do it again,” said Vargas. “But first, I have to get past this test in Antonio DeMarco, which is not going to be easy. So I can’t look too far forward past DeMarco and I’m definitely going to be ready for him.”

DeMarco, 28, is 3-0 with two knockouts as a welterweight since being dethroned for the WBC lightweight belt in an eighth round knockout loss to Adrien Broner in November 2012.

“I think that I’m going to be the stronger fighter against DeMarco, just as I’ve been the stronger fighter in my last few fights,” said Vargas. “Some of the guys have been punchers but they haven’t been able to do anything to me because I have such a strong will to win.”

DeMarco was last in action for August’s unanimous decision over Lanardo Tyner, who floored DeMarco in the first round. Vargas said that DeMarco can expect a more difficult bout from him when they meet in November.

“I’ve got guts, I’ve got heart and I’ve got determination, so it’s going to definitely be a great battle. I’m not going to break and everyone knows that about me,” said Vargas. “You will see all of that again, so there will be no difference in this fight. I have a big surprise for DeMarco. I’ll break down DeMarco, little by little. I’m going to give everyone a great match-up and I’ll give everyone a great fight without a doubt.”


The Following is the Nov. 22 HBO Pay Per View card in the order the bouts will be televised, according to Top Rank’s Lee Samuels:

Jessie Vargas, Las Vegas vs. Antonio DeMarco, Tijuana Mexico.

Vasyl Lomachenko, Odessa, Ukraine vs. Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo, Chonburi, Thailand, for Lomachenko’s WBO featherweight belt.

Zou Shiming, Guizhou, China, vs. Kwanpichit Onesongchaigym, Buriam, Thailand, in a WBO flyweight eliminator.

Manny Pacquiao, Philippines vs. Chris Algieri, Huntington, New York