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
Providence, R.I., Friday December 1st
Toka Kahn Clary vs. John Vincent Moralde, 10 rounds, featherweights
In a production of Hall of Famer Evander Holyfield’s Real Deal Boxing to be aired by the CBS sports network, Liberia-born Kahn Clary (23-1, 16 KOs) takes on the unbeaten Moralde (19-0, 10 KOs) of the Philippines in an intriguing matchup. Kahn Clary is coming off a second-round stoppage victory over the undefeated David Berma and aims to make it 2-0 against unbeaten fighters against at the expense of the 23-year-old Moralde, who has fought only once away from home in his entire career with a dramatic result: his foe Brayd Smith collapsed and died after fighting Moralde in Australia back in March of 2015.
TSS New England correspondent Jeffrey Freeman will be ringside. Be sure to check out his post-fight report.
New York, NY, Saturday December 2nd
Miguel Cotto vs. Sadam Ali, 12 rounds, WBO junior middleweight belt
Hold your tears, your weepy eulogies and your sad goodbyes: ‘tis time to celebrate. Cotto (41-5, 33 KO) will retire after this fight with his title wrapped around his belt, with his wealth and (hopefully) his health intact, and he will do so after being a champion for more than half of his career and a credit to the sport who never ducked anyone and never failed to bring the fight to his opponents, most of whom were champions and top contenders of his era. Standing in his way to the other side of the hill is Ali (25-1, 14 KOs), a more than credible opponent who has every intention to spoil his retirement party. Asking more from the former 2000 Olympian from Caguas, Puerto Rico is just asking too much.
What to look for in this fight: Hopefully, it will be a celebratory occasion as boxing bids farewell to one of its most reliable, honest and hardest-working practitioners. But expect Ali to make it as hard as possible for Cotto to just sail into the sunset. Fortunately, the uber-competitive Cotto wouldn’t want it any other way.
Rey Vargas vs. Oscar Negrete, 12 rounds, WBC junior featherweight title
Spoiler alert here! No, we don’t know the result in advance, of course. But Vargas (30-0, 22 KOs) could easily spoil the night for Cotto by upstaging him in this terrific matchup between unbeaten fighters. Granted, in spite of his spotless record, Colombia’s Negrete (17-0, 7 KO) is pretty much an overblown bantamweight going up against one of the most promising young Mexican fighters out there, so the prognosis favors Vargas easily. But it will be an interesting test for the young titlist (pictured fighting Ronnie Rios) who is coming off victories against Gavin McDonnell (for the belt, in February) and Rios.
What to look for in this fight: December will end, the Rigo-Loma extravaganza will pass, and either/both of them will need an opponent for 2018. I’d say a solid, highlight-reel-worthy stoppage by Vargas will put him at the top of a very short list to face the winner of that fight.
Leicester, England, Saturday December 2nd
Anthony Yigit vs. Joe Hughes, 12 rounds, junior welterweight European title
Yigit (20-0-1, 7 KOs) will make the trek from his native Sweden to face Hughes (15-2-1, 6 KOs) on home turf, returning the favor to the host country in which the 26-year-old southpaw grabbed the vacant title earlier this year after beating Lenny Daws over 12 rounds. Yigit defended his title against Sandor Martin in his homeland and is now risking it against Hughes, whose last defeat came at the hands of Jack Catterall and who took Tyrone Nurse to a 12-round draw to hold on to his Lonsdale belt he won against Andy Keates.
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