Friday, March 24, 2023  |



Ruslan Provodnikov to face Jose Luis Castillo?




Former WBO junior welterweight titleholder Ruslan Provodnikov is still in search of an opponent for Nov. 28 in Moscow, his manager, Vadim Kornilov informed on Thursday.

Provodnikov’s promoter, Artie Pelullo informed last month that “a lot money” was offered to and turned down by former titleholder Zab Judah and Mauricio Herrera, the latter of whom defeated Provodnikov by unanimous decision in January 2011.

On Friday, Pelullo said that the amount offered was “half a million” each to Judah and Herrera. Kornilov said considerations have been narrowed down to former lightweight titleholders Jose Luis Castillo, 40, and Julio Diaz, 34.

“Those are the two guys that we’re considering but we’re looking for other options,” said Kornilov. “We had actually raised the stakes a little bit in the hopes that Shane Mosley, Zab Judah or Mauricio Herrera would come through but the Russian promoter wants the names of someone who is somewhat known in Russia.”

Career highlights for Castillo (66-12-1, 57 knockouts) include twice going the distance in losses to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in April and December 2002, earning the WBC’s 135-pound belt with a split decision over Joel Casamayor in December 2004 and splitting bouts with Diego Corrales in May and October 2005.

But Castillo has faded badly since June 2007, when he was stopped in the fourth round by Ricky Hatton. Although Castillo is 11-4 with 10 knockouts over the course of his past 15 fights, he has been knocked out by Alfonso Gomez and lost decisions to Sebastian Lujan, Jorge Paez Jr. and Antwone Smith.

Diaz (40-10-1, 29 KOs) has lost his past three fights by decisions to Amir Khan and Shawn Porter and by third-round knockout against Keith Thurman in April.

In his last fight in June, Provodnikov lost his WBO junior welterweight title by split decision to Chris Algieri.

Nicknamed “The Siberian Rocky,” Provodnikov, 30, was coming off a 10th round stoppage of Mike Alvarado, whom he floored twice on the way to winning his belt last October.

“Some of these opponents that we had been looking at are just not known in Russia, so they didn’t like them and they’re not being considered. But we’re looking for the best opponent that we can get who would give Ruslan a good fight but that also has a name. As far as I know, Diaz would take the fight,” said Kornilov.

“But Diaz is not really that much of a name because he’s lost a lot of his fights in the last year. Castillo is more of a name over there. A lot of people are criticizing that fight but it’s really about how Castillo takes this fight. He’s won two in a row against mediocre opponents. We know that he’s 40 years old but he’s also a very experienced fighter with over 60 fights.”



Junior lightweights Ronny Rios and Robinson Castellanos weighed in at 128 and, 127 pounds in advance of tonight’s match-up at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif.

Last in action for a unanimous decision over Andrew Cancio in April, Rios, 24, will face Castellanos as the headliner to the FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes broadcast of “Golden Boy Live!”

Castellanos, 32, suffered a ninth-round stoppage loss to Rene Alvarado in his most recent bout in April that ended his run of 11 consecutive wins, seven by way of knockout.

Another fight on the card features welterweights Antonio Orozco and former junior lightweight titleholder Steve Forbes, who weighed 141.8 and 142, respectively.

Orozco, 26, is coming off a unanimous decision over Martin Honorio in May. Forbes, 37, has won just three of his past 13 fights and has lost five straight, including a unanimous decision in June to Emmanuel Lartei Lartey.

Junior featherweight Diego De La Hoya, the 20-year-old cousin of Golden Boy Promotions President Oscar De La Hoya, tipped the scales at 123 pounds compared to 123.6 for rival Luis Ruiz Lizarraga.

De La Hoya is coming off his second consecutive stoppage victory, a fifth round TKO over Miguel Tamayo in July. Lizzaraga knocked out Miguel Angel Nieves in the fifth round in April, representing his second straight stoppage since being stopped in the fifth by Carlos Martin in September 2013.


The rest of the weights from tonight’s card are as follows.

Jesus Delgado 134.8 vs. Joan Valenzuela 139.5

Neeco Macias 148.4 vs. Roberto Crespo 147.8

Tony Gutierrez 162 vs. Dashon Johnson 166.8

Santiago Guevara 133.4 vs. Rocco Espinoza 132.8

Oscar Negrete 119.2 vs. Salvador Perez 120