Boxing: Saturday Night Matches to Watch
Three excellent fight cards take place on Saturday. DAZN will broadcast two championship bouts from the Cajundome in Lafayette, Louisiana, while ESPN+ will showcase fights from SSE Arena in London. On Showtime, Viktor Postol is in action on the undercard championship bout between Robert Easter Jr. and Rances Barthelemy.
Commonwealth Super Middleweight Championship
Lerrone Richards 11-0-0 vs. Tommy Langford 20-3-0, SSE Arena, LondonLangford tends to stand right in front of his opponent, which could lead to trouble against Richards.
Richards should use his quick hands to pile up points. He'll stay out of harm's way, allowing Langford to move toward him, then side-step and land two- or three-punch combinations.
Daniel Dubois 10-0-0 vs. Richard Lartey 14-1-0, SSE Arena, LondonLartey and Dubois are roughly the same height. Dubois could have an edge based on the quality of his opponents, though, as he has already beaten Mauricio Barragan, Kevin Johnson and Razvan Cojanu.
For a heavyweight, Dubois has a fast 1-2. He also has power. Nine of his 10 wins have come via knockout, and some of those were devastating knockouts. Lartey piled up his impressive record fighting in his native Ghana. He's never seen the type of power Dubois has.
WBA Super World Bantamweight Championship
Nonito Donaire 39-5-0 vs. Stephon Young 18-1-3, Cajundome, Lafayette"The Filipino Flash" Donaire was supposed to battle Zolani Tete on Saturday night. Tete suffered a shoulder injury, so the promoters called in Stephon Young to take his place. Donaire has battled top fighters like champion Carl Frampton, Ruben Garcia Hernandez, Vic Darchinyan and Jessie Magdaleno.
This is a major step up for Young, who lost to Reymart Gaballo two fights ago. Donaire is easily the best fighter Young has ever faced. Most boxing fans expect Donaire to put on a clinic.
Viktor Postol 30-2-0 vs. Mohamed Mimoune 21-2-0, Cosmopolitan, Las VegasFrenchman Mimoune has won 10 fights in a row, but he tends to throw his punches too wide. Also, like Young-Donaire, Mimoune is taking a major step up against Postol. Postol hung with Terence Crawford for 12 rounds in a unanimous-decision loss in 2016. He knocked out Lucas Martin Matthysse in 2015. Now 35, Postol should use his experience and take advantage of Mimoune's tendency to throw haymakers.
WBA World Super Lightweight Championship
Regis Prograis 23-0-0 vs Kiryl Relikh 23-2-0, CajundomeNineteen of Prograis' 23 wins have come via knockout. Although Relikh has a formidable 23-2 record, he's going to have trouble with Prograis. From the opening bell Prograis will use his jab to get closer to Relikh and start landing powerful body shots.
It's difficult to see Relikh keeping up with Prograis' energy, or staying out of the way of Prograis' power punches. This could be a quick fight.
WBA World Lightweight Championship
Robert Easter Jr. 21-1-0 vs. Rances Barthelemy 27-1-0, CosmopolitanRances Barthelemy lost to Relikh a couple of fights ago. What's strange about that battle is how Barthelemy didn't use his reach advantage . Barthelemy has a 72 1/2-inch wingspan, while Relickh's wingspan is 67 1/2 inches.
Barthelemy won't have a reach advantage against Easter, whose wingspan is 76 inches. But Easter last fought in July, when he lost to Mikey Garcia, one of the best lightweights in the world, via unanimous decision.
Easter has quick hands and the reach advantage, but Barthelemy has the more recent fight, a victory over Robert Frankel in December. This should be an entertaining battle that could go either way.