The Fight Night Guide brings you a brief preview of every upcoming weekend’s most relevant fights compiled by Zona de Boxeo editor and TSS writer Diego Morilla, with all the basic information you need to know to check out the action and to know what to expect from every fighter. Follow us every week at #FNG @TheSweetScience @Morillaboxing
Flint, Michigan, Friday Nov. 17
Anthony Dirrell vs. Denis Douglin, 10 rounds, super middleweights
Dirrell (30-1-1, 24 KOs), brother of Andre and a former WBC super middleweight titleholder, dropped his belt to Badou Jack in 2015 and has been in rebuilding mode ever since, with his career being tossed violently onto the proverbial backburner by a few postponements and cancellations as well as his own unentertaining style. But at 33 years of age he cannot afford to mess around anymore, and he figures to make 20-5 Douglin (pictured with his trainer mom) his next victim on his way to becoming the best Dirrell in boxing.
What to look for in this fight: The question is whether the likely win that Dirrell will get in this bout will be his ticket to the bigger and better things that he is still expecting to happen in his career. We’ll know soon enough.
Jamontay Clark vs. Domonique Dolton, 8 rounds, welterweights
Clark (12-0, 7 KOs) is a top young prospect from Cincinnati coming off a crossroads victory against fellow unbeaten prospect Ivan Golub, and he will be in another crossroads bout against the once-beaten Dolton (19-1-1, 10 KOs), who is in desperate need of a win after going 2-1-1 in the last two years in a once-promising career.
What to look for in this fight: Two young guns in a win-or-step-aside fight is always a great proposition, so I would not be surprised if this fight steals the spotlight.
Ontario, California, Friday Nov. 17
Giovanni Santillan vs. Dodzi Kemeh, 10 rounds, welterweights
Santillan (22-0, 12 KOs) is coming off a spectacular stoppage win in which he grabbed a regional title, and now faces Ghana’s Dodzi Kemeh (19-1, 17 KOs) in a bout to be shown on Facebook live. How good is Kemeh? Well, that’s anyone’s guess. “There’s nothing on him,” said Santillan, a southpaw from San Diego. “I looked all over the web and couldn’t find anything.” It is weird to think that Kemeh will be featured in a Facebook Live broadcast without even having a FB account himself, but apparently that is the case.
Las Vegas, Saturday November 18
Julian Williams vs. Ishe Smith, 10 rounds, junior middleweights
There is not a lot of hope for a great fight here, but it should be a real barnburner, in my opinion. Smith (29-8, 12 KOs) became the first Las Vegas-native to win a world title with a majority decision over Cornelius Bundrage in 2013, but ever since then he has not been up to his initial promise, falling at the hands of Erislandy Lara and Daniel Jacobs, among others. On the other hand, Williams (23-1-1, 15 KOs) is still considered a top prospect at 154 even after his devastating stoppage loss to Jermall Charlo in 2016, but this fight is a must-win for both men, with a potential loss becoming a really difficult bump in the road ahead for either one of them.
What to look for in this fight: Expect Smith to apply all of his ring savvy and experience in trying to outbox the naturally bigger and stronger Williams, who will probably win by late stoppage to keep his career alive in the talent-laden super welterweight division.
Earl Newman vs. Lionell Thompson, 10 rounds, light heavyweights
Newman (10-0-1, 7 KOs) will be risking his pristine double-digit unbeaten status against a real step-up in competition here.Thompson (18-4, 11 KOs) has a deceptive record after choosing the tougher path by facing tough cookies like Radivoje Kalajdzic and Sergey Kovalev in his young career, and at 32 he has much more to lose than the 26-year old Newman. Wouldn’t be surprised if it outshines the main event.
Tugstsogt Nyambayar vs. Harmonito Dela Torre, 10 rounds, featherweights
Nyambayer (8-0, 8 KOs), a 25-year-old 2012 Olympic silver medalist from Mongolia, is now training and living in California for what he expects to be a championship-worthy career. He will be looking to victimize the Philippines’ Dela Torre (19-0, 12 KOs) to continue his perfect road to a title belt. Not an easy task, to say the least. It will clearly be a career-defining win for the lucky winner, and an explosive fight while it lasts.
Ciudad, Obregon, Mexico, Saturday November 18
Kenya Enriquez vs. Jessica Nery Plata, 10 rounds, interim WBC light flyweight world title
Tijuana’s Enriquez (19-1, 9 KOs) faces Mexico City’s Nery Plata (21-1, 3 KOs) in a battle between two top female contenders in a country that is producing them one after the other. Their records speak for themselves. In a field where many ladies struggle to accumulate more than 10 wins without a loss, the winner will be on her way to receive consideration as one of the best in the biz.
What to look for in this fight: Superb skills and toughness in a cross-country rivalry? Easily, one of the best female matchups possible out there. The winner should challenge for perennial titlist Yesica Bopp in an explosive unification.
Belfast, Northern Ireland, Saturday November 18
Carl Frampton vs. Horacio Garcia, 10 rounds, featherweights
Frampton (23-1, 14 KOs) needs to feel the warmth of his people after being knocked off his pedestal as one of the best fighters in 2016, which was considerably lowered after losing his featherweight title by majority decision in his rematch with Leo Santa Cruz back in January. And Garcia (33-3-1, 24 KOs) will hopefully provide the perfect opponent for this homecoming bout, after his disappointing last-minute cancellation this year when Mexico’s Andres Gutierrez suffered a freak bathroom incident that forced him to withdraw from their scheduled July 29th bout. Garcia is no stranger to facing unsurmountable odds abroad, and he will bring it in a fight that should be entertaining from bell to bell.
What to look for in this fight: Frampton will be under a lot of pressure to show that cutting ties with the McGuigan team (former champ Barry and his son Shane) was a good idea after the pair took him to greater heights seen for an Irish fighter in a long time. Anything other than a stoppage win will be seen as a failure, and if logic prevails Frampton should get it sometime during the second half of the bout.
Jerwin Ancajas vs. Jamie Conlan, 12 rounds, IBF junior bantamweight title
Ancajas (27-1-1, 18 KOs) will be attempting to defend his IBF super flyweight belt in hostile territory against the unbeaten Conlan (19-0, 11 KOs), but as a seasoned champ with an experience that exceeds his record and having made his first two title defenses in Australia and China, the question is whether Conlan will be the one to survive the pressure of being the local fighter being forced to deliver in front of his people. Not a bad recipe for a co-main event, anywhere in the world.
What to look for in this fight: If he applies his all-out, pressure-first style, Conlan will be the first one in his family to hold a world title, leaving his superbly talented brother Michael waiting for his turn sometime in the next two years.
Also in this card:
Zolani Tete vs. Siboniso Gonya, 12 rounds, WBO bantamweight title
Czestochowa, Poland, Saturday November 18
Tomasz Adamek vs. Fred Kassi, 10 rounds, heavyweights
Adamek (51-5, 30 KOs) is a 40-year-old former two-division titlist who will have a homecoming-comeback bout against Cameroon native Kassi (18-6-1, 10 KOs) in a 10-rounder that will serve to answer questions that no one is really anxious to ask. Is Adamek ready to become a factor in the heavyweight division again? Who cares? Adamek is coming off another win in Poland against a fringe contender, but he is 2-3 in his last five, and nothing indicates that he still has it in him to translate the dominance he exhibited in the 175 and 200-pound divisions into the unlimited weight class in which he has invested so much in his search for the elusive title belt.
Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, Saturday November 18
Guillermo Jones vs. Ytalo Perea, 11 rounds, heavyweights
Well, look who’s back! It took a year for former cruiserweight champ Jones (40-3-2, 30 KOs), still fighting out of Panama, to return to the ring against Perea (10-2-2, 6 KOs) from Ecuador, in what will be his first fight since July of last year, but “The Feline” has returned and it looks like he is committed to make the most out of his yearly incursion into boxing. Tired of missing the targeted weight and other problems, Jones fights now at heavyweight, looking to roar again in a suddenly revitalized division. We’ll hold our judgment until we actually see him in the ring again.
San Salvador, El Salvador, Saturday November 18
Alys Sanchez vs. Liliana Palmera, 10 rounds, WBA female junior featherweight title
Venezuela’s Sanchez (15-3-1) and Colombia’s Palmera (27-12-3) met in a 10-round fight back in August, and now they meet in neutral territory in El Salvador with the WBA world title on the line.
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