There’s plenty more nights of big boxing action ahead of us through August to December 2016, so let’s get stuck in and see what’s in store. Note that this list only contains official ‘inked in’ fights.
Spence Jr vs Leonard Bundu: NBC, Boxnation
Errol Spence Jr (20-0, 17 KO) | Leonard Bundu (33-1-2, 12 KO) | Welterweight | Brooklyn, New York
Fast-rising Welterweight prospect Errol Spence Jr will be looking to makes waves against another solid, experienced obstacle in Leonard Bundu. A two-time European champ with plenty of defenses behind him, Bundu, despite being a considerable underdog, shouldn’t be underestimated.
OK, this is a fight Spence shouldn’t have too many problems in. But it’s still a meaningful-ish step on the 26-year-old’s ladder (even if it seems more-or-less on par with Chris Algieri) that’s worthy of your attention. Spence has looked impressive so far, putting in dynamic performances against some decent fringe-contenders before wiping out former world champ Algieri in April.
Bundu’s talents pale in comparison (cough, he’s also 41), but he has some decent wins over Lee Purdy and Frankie Gavin in the past, and also took Keith Thurman the distance in December 2014.
Brook vs Golovkin: HBO, Sky Sports Box Office
Kell Brook (36-0, 25 KO) | Gennady Golovkin (35-0, 32 KO) | Middleweight | Golovkin’s IBF, WBA, WBC titles defense | London, England
There’s something a little awry about this matchup, but that doesn’t mean it hasn’t ignited serious interest from boxing fans. Welterweight front-runner Kell Brook will be entering the lion’s den as he climbs up two divisions to take on Middleweight behemoth Gennady Golovkin. Can Brook do the unthinkable and beat ‘GGG’? Or even put a dent in the world’s most formidable fighter?
Well, given Golovkin’s phenomenal power and ruthless reputation in the ring, it’s naturally going to be hard for folks to bet on Brook, especially since it’s his first encounter at 160 pounds. But hey, anything can happen in boxing, and let’s not forget that Brook is already a big puncher who looks like he has plenty of filling out to do beyond 147. Throw in a top-notch punch selection and ring smarts and we could actually have a real fight on our hands here.
Cuadras vs Gonzalez: HBO
Carlos Cuadras (35-0-1, 27 KO) | Roman Gonzalez (45-0, 38 KO) | Junior Bantamweight | Cuadras’ WBC title defense | Inglewood, California
WBC Junior Bantamweight titlist Carlos Cuadras will be facing Roman Gonzalez, BB’s P4P No.1, in a fight that looks extremely tasty and relevant. Both fighters, unbeaten boxer-punchers and twenty-somethings, are well in their primes which makes this must-see action.
Gonzalez, who generally puts in flawless, dominating performances, may be the favorite here, but Cuadras represents a legitimate threat who has a great deal to gain with an upset victory. Cuadras is coming in off a stoppage of Richie Mepranum in April, while Gonzalez turned in a unanimous verdict over McWilliams Arroyo on the same night.
Canelo vs Smith: HBO PPV, Boxnation
Canelo Alvarez (47-1-1, 33 KO) | Liam Smith (23-0-1, 13 KO) | Junior Middleweight | Smith’s WBO title defense | Arlington, Texas
I’m not really sure I have the ability to seriously sell this matchup to you in a big way, but it is, like it or not, still a big event on the 2016 boxing calendar. Yes, because Canelo Alvarez is involved. Fight fans have been craving a Canelo vs Golovkin showdown for some time now, but it just doesn’t seem to be happening. And in all honesty, it’s beginning to feel easier to lose enthusiasm than gain frustration.
By this date, Golovkin would have faced Kell Brook (above), and, assuming Brook doesn’t bring the upset, there will still be enough time for a Canelo vs GGG mega fight to happen. In the meantime we’ll have to settle for Canelo vs Liam Smith, which, in all honesty, is quite a big disappointment. Look, it’s not that Smith, who holds the WBO Junior Middleweight title, is a bad fighter. He certainly isn’t. In fact, he’s a highly entertaining bruiser who is fast improving.
But the reality is that Smith has defended his title against pretty soft opposition so far and will be climbing up several levels to face Canelo. I get it, it’s a big opportunity, a big money fight. It’s hard for Smith to turn down. But it also means Canelo will be kinda’ regressing by going back down to 154 pounds (from that weird 155 ‘Canelo Weight’), which makes the GGG showdown seem another hundred miles away from coming to fruition.
Would it bug the hell out of you to say ‘it is what it is’ right now? Oh, and that’s it’s also going to be an HBO PPV broadcast? Yep. You’ve got to actually pay for this thing. So here’s hoping the undercard is exceptional.
Canelo was last in action knocking out a spirited Amir Khan into oblivion in May, while Smith broke down an overmatched Predrag Radosevic in June.
Glowacki vs Usyk
Krzysztof Glowacki (26-0, 16 KO) | Oleksandr Usyk (9-0, 9 KO) | Cruiserweight | Glowacki’s WBO title defense | Gdansk, Poland
This is a pretty tantalizing scrap between a Cruiserweight elite and an up-and-coming fellow banger in Oleksandr Usyk, who, let’s face it, looks like an absolute nutter (Google his face right now if you’re unfamiliar). It goes without saying that Glowacki has faced the greater opposition, but Usyk seems like he could be the real deal despite having just nine fights on his pro slate. Two big lads, both unbeaten thus far. But yeah, there’s questions.
Glowacki thrust himself into the limelight with a career-defining knockout victory over Marco Huck last August, and most recently defended his newly obtained WBO title against Steve Cunningham. Usyk has dispatched of all challengers in his two-year campaign at Cruiserweight, most recently taking out Pedro Rodriguez last December.
Crolla vs Linares: Sky Sports 1
Anthony Crolla (31-4-3, 13 KO) | Jorge Linares (40-3, 27 KO) | Lightweight | RING, WBA title unification | Manchester, England
Anthony Crolla and Jorge Linares are two top-tier Lightweights who have their plates full in this one. Both are known for their crafty prowess and power – don’t let Crolla’s ‘colorful’ record fool you – meaning this bout could catch fire in a big way and potentially settle the argument of who the best 135 pound fighter is in the world right now.
Crolla, who recently knocked out Darleys Perez and rising puncher Ismael Barroso, brings the WBA strap to the equation, while Linares, who notably crushed game challenger Kevin Mitchell last May, brings the RING variety. This fight may resonate with plenty of dedicated British fans for one reason: Revenge. The aforementioned Mitchell was stopped by Linares and Barroso in his final two fights before retiring, and if Crolla can beat Linares, he will have avenged both of those defeats.
Looks like a good scrap, folks.
Best of the Rest Boxing in August – September
- Riku Kano vs Katsunari Takayama | Strawweight | WBO championship | Sanda, Japan
- Kei Takenaka vs Louisa Hawton | Junior Flyweight | WBO championship | Sanda, Japan (Undercard)
- Kohei Kono vs Luis Concepcion | Junior Bantamweight | Kono’s WBA title defense | Tokyo, Japan
- Ryoichi Taguchi vs Ryo Miyazaki | Junior Flyweight | Taguchi’s WBA title defense | Tokyo, Japan (Undercard)
- McJoe Arroyo vs Jerwin Ancajas | Junior Bantamweight | Arroyo’s IBF title defense | Bacoor, Philippines
- Naoya Inoue vs Karron Jarupianlerd | Junior Bantamweight | Inoue’s WBO title defense | Zama, Japan
- Takuma Inoue vs Froilan Saludar | Junior Bantamweight | Inoue’s WBO title defense | Zama, Japan (Undercard)
- Daniel Jacobs vs Sergio Mora | Middleweight | Jacob’s WBA title defense | TBA location | Spike TV
- Eduard Troyanovsky vs Keita Obara | Junior Welterweight | Troyanovsky’s IBF title defense | Moscow, Russia
- Lee Haskins vs Stuart Hall | Bantamweight | Haskins’ IBF title defense | London, England | Sky Sports Box Office (Brook vs Golovkin Undercard)
- Johnriel Casimero vs Charlie Edwards | Flyweight | Casimero’s IBF title defense | London, England | (Also on Undercard)
- Shinsuke Yamanaka vs Anselmo Moreno | Bantamweight | Vacant RING, Yamanaka’s WBC title defense | Osaka, Japan
- Hugo Ruiz vs Hozumi Hasegawa | Junior Featherweight | Ruiz’s WBC title defense | Osaka, Japan (Undercard)
- Donnie Nietes vs Edgar Sosa | Flyweight division | Carson, California
What do you think is the biggest fight inked in through August to September, readers? Chime in with your thoughts below in the comments. For an extensive list of all the latest upcoming fights, head on over to our Latest Schedule.