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Alexander vs. Urango, Khan vs. Marquez, Ortiz vs. Campbell, and the 140lb landscape!

Boxingchronicles.com readers know by now that the 140lb title unification between WBC champion Devon Alexander and IBF titlist Juan Urango is set for March 6.  The title fight will take place at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Uncasville, CT and will be televised as an HBO Boxing After Dark headliner.  This would appear to be the beginning of the super lightweight house cleaning that this commentator had previously proposed should take place.

Last year, following Paulie Malignaggi's unanimous decision win over Juan Diaz in December, I stated that HBO should have a tournament at 140lbs not unlike the super middleweight tournament that Showtime is currently in the process of hosting.  While the matchup between Alexander and Urango bares significance, Alexander remains a substantial betting favorite to win the contest. Urango has only lost to Ricky Hatton, who at the time was the universally recognized undefeated champion of the junior welterweight division, and WBC welterweight champion Andre Berto in May of 2009, but he remains a volatile force in the 140lb landscape. Although he is a brawler who can punch hard with either hand, Urango remains technically limited in terms of his skillset.

Before I begin discussing the fighters and future fights at 140lbs, let me start off by saying that undefeated WBO super lightweight champion Timothy Bradley is currently the best 140lb fighter in the world today.  Following his upset win over Junior Witter in England in 2008 to capture the WBC strap, Bradley has not taken a single back step.  He successfully unified the WBC and WBO belts when he defeated New Jersey native Kendall Holt by unanimous decision in Canada back in March of 2009. 

Since the win over Holt, Bradley vacated the WBC title which Alexander currently possesses.  Following the no-contest with Nate Campbell in August of 2009, Bradley showed the boxing world that he has become a complete fighter when he impressively outpointed previously undefeated Lamont Pearson in December.  Alexander, who won the vacant WBC title in August of 2009 with an 8th round TKO of Junior Witter, is undefeated and would appear to be the second best fighter in the division right underneath Bradley.

Boxingchronicles.com recently learned that WBA junior welterweight champion Amir Khan will likely sign on to face Hall of Famer and lightweight champion Juan Manuel Marquez on May 15 at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, with Victor Ortiz taking on former lightweight champion Nate Campbell on the undercard.  The card will likely be televised on HBO.  Khan's style appears to be a nightmare for Marquez, who is coming off a one-sided loss to Floyd Mayweather Jr back in September of 2009.  Therefore, I'm not quite sure about Marquez accepting such a dangerous fight so soon.  Marquez may have been better suited fighting Hatton, in what would have been a battle for continued contention at a 140lbs.  Perhaps a doubleheader featuring Khan against interim WBA champion Marcos Maidana and Marquez vs. Hatton would have been more sufficient.  Nonetheless, this commentator will certainly be tuning in. 

In regards to the Ortiz vs. Campbell match up, many observers view it as a mismatch in favor of the young Ortiz.  For the record, I do not view this fight as a mismatch.  This is actually an interesting crossroads fight. Campbell is by no means an easy fight for the twice beaten 23 year old fighting out of Oxnard, CA. Although Campbell did not look good for three rounds against Bradley in August of 2009, the fight was stopped as a result of a cut before anybody could come to a solid conclusion. Also keep in mind that Ortiz is no Bradley, as Bradley has shown considerable improvement with each an every outting and has ascended to the top of the junior welterweight rankings. A win over Campbell is far from a lock for Ortiz.

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3 comments:

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Keith Thurman said...

I like this matchup. after the disastrous Maidana fight, Ortiz is going to have his mettle tested again. This time by a tough veteran fighter. Curious to see how Ortiz responds

boxinglover9 said...

OT: Hey sports fans, i know this is a bit off topic, but yes Manny Pacquiao is retiring. Fortunately we can still see his training for previous fight with Tim Bradley at the Manny Pacquiao Official Youtube channel.