The ESPN2 “Friday Night Fights” season ends on Aug. 22, but there will be more boxing on the network in the fall.

ESPN2 is in the process of finalizing plans to carry a Wednesday night boxing special on Oct. 1 (9 p.m. ET) from the Barker Hangar in Santa Monica, California. The card will be headlined by the middleweight title elimination bout between Curtis Stevens and Hassan N’Dam, a fight with great potential to be action-packed.

The winner of the fight will become the mandatory challenger for 160-pound titleholder Sam Soliman (44-11, 18 KOs) of Australia, who won a belt via unanimous decision against Felix Sturm on May 31 in Germany.

The Oct. 1 card will be the first televised card put on by promoter Michael King. The undercard is still being worked on.

King, who promotes former titleholder N’Dam, won the rights to Stevens-N’Dam at a purse bid earlier this month, outbidding Stevens promoter Main Events $80,000 to $62,000 in a bit of a surprise.

N’Dam (30-1, 18 KOs), 30, of France, has won three fights in a row since losing a decision in a world title fight to Peter Quillin in 2012.

Stevens (27-4, 20 KOs), 29, of Brooklyn, New York, has won two fights in a row by knockout since being stopped in the eighth round challenging titleholder Gennady Golovkin in November.

Notes: Crawford to defend title

July, 29, 2014
Jul 29
Caught up with Top Rank promoter Bob Arum on Tuesday and here a couple of interesting tidbits:

[+] EnlargeTerence Crawford vs. Yuriorkis Gamboa
Chris Farina/Top Rank Lightweight titleholder Terence Crawford's second title defense is set for Nov. 29 in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska.
• Lightweight titleholder Terence Crawford's second defense is penciled in for Nov. 29 (HBO) at the CenturyLink Center in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska, likely against top contender Raymundo Beltran (29-6-1, 17 KOs) of Mexico. That is the same arena where Crawford (24-0, 17 KOs) put on a dazzling performance in his first defense on June 28 by knocking out previously unbeaten Yuriorkis Gamboa.

"It's Thanksgiving weekend and we have the building on hold," Arum said. "HBO loves the fight."

Crawford won the title by unanimous decision from Scotland's Ricky Burns, beating him on his home turf on March 1.

In his previous fight, Burns was the recipient of a gift draw against Beltran, who also traveled to Scotland, dropped Burns, broke his jaw and pounded on him only to be robbed of the decision. Beltran is a very deserving challenger.

• Arum also said Chinese flyweight star Zou Shiming's fight on the Manny Pacquiao-Chris Algieri undercard on Nov. 22 (HBO PPV) in Macau, China, will be his first scheduled 12-round bout, perhaps a title eliminator. With a victory, Arum said they would pursue a title shot for Zou (5-0, 1 KO), the two-time Chinese Olympic gold medalist, in the fight after that against the winner of the Sept. 14 fight between Thai titleholder Amnat Ruenroeng (13-0, 5 KOs) and Puerto Rican mandatory challenger McWilliams Arroyo (15-1, 13 KOs).

Ruenroeng, a 2008 Olympian, who faced Zou multiple times in the amateurs, was ringside for Zou's fight in February in anticipation of a possible showdown.

The Pacquiao-Algieri televised undercard is also likely to include a bout involving welterweight contender Luis Carlos Abregu (36-1, 29 KOs) of Argentina.

• Arum said the media tour to promote the Pacquiao-Algieri fight will begin Aug. 25 in Macau with two stops in Asia -- Shanghai, China and Taipei, Taiwan -- before they come to the United States for stops in Los Angeles, San Francisco (big Filipino population) and New York, with a stop in Las Vegas also possible.
videoMoments after Gennady Golovkin drilled Daniel Geale in the third round on Saturday night at New York's Madison Square Garden to retain his middleweight belt for the 11th time, GGG called for a unification fight with Miguel Cotto.

"I am very happy and now I only want unification fights. I want Cotto," Golovkin said. "I want to fight Miguel Cotto and I want to fight him next. I want to prove to the world that without a doubt that I am the best middleweight in the world. That is very important to me."

On June 7, also at MSG, Cotto made boxing history, becoming the first Puerto Rican fighter to win a world title in four weight classes when he dominated and stopped Sergio Martinez in the 10th round to win the legitimate 160-pound championship, along with an alphabet belt.

Golovkin and Cotto are both slated to fight one more time this year but nobody should go holding their breath that it will be against each other, no matter how much Golovkin wants it.

"Certainly, it's up to Miguel who he wants to fight but I think the Canelo [Alvarez] fight is a much more attractive fight," Top Rank's Bob Arum, Cotto's promoter, told on Tuesday. "Even though I love Golovkin and [K2 Promotions managing director] Tom Loeffler -- and nobody can say that Golovkin isn't a great fighter -- it's risk-reward in boxing. We don't know about Golovkin's ability on pay-per-view."

More likely, Golovkin will fight in October or November. Cotto is penciled in to fight again in December at the Garden, and likely not against anyone nearly as tough as Golovkin so as not to jeopardize the possibility of the Alvarez fight next spring.

Gaby Penagaricano, Cotto's adviser, said he wasn't surprised to hear Golovkin call out Cotto and said the fight would be one of the various possibilities they'd consider.

"I saw it on Saturday. Not surprised," Penagaricano told "Everyone wants to call out the big names, right? We have not begun to discuss options for the next fight. Probably I will be sitting down with Miguel in the coming days to start planning. It's a fight to consider. I am sure we will be discussing it soon among other options."

Golovkin's name is sure to come up, but I just don't happen to think it will be a serious consideration because why would Cotto, who is winding down his great career, gamble by fighting a beast like Golovkin and risk the much bigger payday that would go with a possible fight with Alvarez?

One piece of good news from Arum is that he said Cotto's fight in December probably won't be on pay-per-view, no doubt in part because the numbers for the June fight with Martinez were so disappointing.

"I don't think it will be," Arum said. "I think we have to start doing more live premium television shows, so I don't think this will be on pay-per-view. It would be on HBO. We are meeting with HBO this week in Las Vegas and we'll be talking about it.

"We have to realize that pay-per-view, no matter if it's boxing, MMA or wrestling, the numbers are way down. People aren't buying the pay-per-view like they used to buy. You can see it in Cotto-Martinez, in [Floyd] Mayweather's [relatively] dismal numbers and in [Manny] Pacquiao's less-than-glorious numbers for the [rematch with Timothy] Bradley fight in April."

GGG's viewership figures down

July, 29, 2014
Jul 29
Middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin's wipeout of former titlist Daniel Geale on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden in New York lasted less than three full rounds, which was probably one of the factors that hurt Golovkin's viewership figures for the first bout of his new deal with HBO.

According to Nielsen Media Research, Golovkin-Geale averaged 984,000 viewers for the live airing (with a peak at 1.048 million viewers). That ranks as the eighth-most-viewed fight of the year on American television. (HBO has televised the top nine.)

[+] EnlargeGennady Golovkin, Daniel Geale
Joe Camporeale/USA TODAY SportsDespite finishing Daniel Geale in exciting fashion on Saturday, Gennady Golovkin delivered a surprisingly low rating on HBO.
The average was a significant drop from Golovkin's last HBO fight in November, when he knocked out New York's Curtis Stevens in the eighth round of a fight that averaged 1.41 million viewers (by far the best of any of Golovkin's five HBO bouts) and had many labeling Golovkin as boxing's next big star.

Usually, as a fight goes deeper the audience grows, but with Golovkin (30-0, 27 KOs) scoring his 17th knockout in a row in short order, there was no opportunity.

HBO officials were disappointed with the figure but attribute the brevity of the fight as one of the key reasons for the decline, not to mention the fact that it took place in the dead of summer, which is always the lowest viewership time of year.

Other factors are also significant, including that HBO had not had any live, prime-time boxing in a month, meaning there were fewer opportunities to promote the event to its boxing audience. Also, despite Geale's credentials as a quality, top-5 middleweight, the Australian is an unknown in the United States. The fight with Golovkin was only his second American television appearance.

Here are the average viewership figures for all five of his Golovkin's HBO fights, in chronological order:

• Gregorz Proksa (Sept. 1, 2012): 685,000

• Gabriel Rosado (Jan. 19, 2013): 813,000

• Matthew Macklin (June 29, 2013): 1.1 million

• Stevens (Nov. 2, 2013): 1.41 million

• Geale (July 26, 2014): 984,000

Saturday's co-feature -- heavyweight Bryant Jennings' lackluster split-decision victory against Mike Perez in a title elimination contest -- averaged 714,000 viewers, peaking at 780,000.
NEW YORK -- Middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin took care of business inside the ring when he knocked out Daniel Geale in the third round of a dominant performance to retain his title for the 11th time (and score his 17th consecutive stoppage) on Saturday night at Madison Square Garden.

The day before the fight, Golovkin took care of his business outside of the ring when he signed a multi-fight contract extension with HBO, K2 Promotions managing director Tom Loeffler told following the fight.

“We are looking forward to continuing our long-term relationship with HBO,” Loeffler said. “They've invested a lot in Gennady, and we feel they are the best television partner we could have to help take his career to the next level.”

The deal calls for a minimum of four fights, although the Geale bout was the first one under the contract. The agreement also has provisions for overseas fights and potential pay-per-view fights, meaning there could be far more than four bouts. The bottom line is that all of Golovkin’s fights, wherever they may take place, will be on HBO or HBO PPV for the foreseeable future.

The fight with Geale was supposed to be the final bout of Golovkin’s previous agreement with HBO, but the terms for Saturday’s fight were renegotiated, and the old deal was ripped up and replaced by the new deal.

Since making his HBO debut in September 2012, Golovkin’s star has steadily risen, as have his viewership figures, which are among the network’s best for boxing. Golovkin (30-0, 27 KOs) has fought five of his last seven fights on HBO, with his two overseas fights in Monaco not being on the network, which took some criticism for not showing his February fight with Osumanu Adama. That won’t happen again under this agreement.

HBO declined to comment on Golovkin’s contract, saying it won’t talk about its multi-fight agreements -- the same stance it took when it declined to discuss the exclusive deals it has recently made with Manny Pacquiao and Sergey Kovalev.

Golovkin is expected back in the ring for one more fight this year, likely in October or November.
Welterweight contender Kell Brook isn’t the only British fighter headed to the StubHub Center in Carson, California, to fight on Aug. 16.

Two of his Matchroom Boxing stablemates -- lightweight Luke Campbell and super middleweight Callum Smith -- will be joining him, promoter Eddie Hearn announced on Friday.

Brook, the mandatory challenger, will face world titleholder Shawn Porter in the main event of the Showtime card.

Campbell (6-0, 4 KOs), 26, a 2012 London Olympics gold medalist, and Smith (12-0, 9 KOs), 24, two of England’s best prospects, will both face opponents to be determined.

"I’m delighted to be able to get Luke and Callum their first taste of action in America as pros," Hearn said. "I believe both fighters will be a real hit with both fans and pundits across the pond, and I expect that they will both return there in the future in world-title fights.

"It's all part of the development of our great, young fighters. New experiences, new atmospheres, all part of making them the finished articles. It’s also a great bonus for Kell’s traveling fans to see two rising stars from Britain perform on such a massive stage."

Golden Boy is promoting the card, but undoubtedly part of the deal to avoid a purse bid was for Hearn to get some spots for his fighters on the undercard.

In addition to Porter-Brook, there are two other world-title bouts on the card. Omar Figueroa defends his lightweight belt against Daniel Estrada, and super middleweight titleholder Sakio Bika meets Anthony Dirrell in a rematch of their draw.

Broner awaiting opponent

July, 25, 2014
Jul 25
Adrian Broner, Carlos MolinaEthan Miller/Getty ImagesAdrien Broner, right, is still looking for an opponent for his Sept. 6 fight.

Former three-division titleholder Adrien Broner, who will headline a Sept. 6 Showtime card (probably in his hometown of Cincinnati), said he’s been training for about a month in Washington, D.C., while awaiting word on who his opponent will be for the junior welterweight bout.

“I’m chilling at camp but I still don’t got an opponent,” Broner told on Thursday night. “I really don’t care who I fight Sept. 6. Somebody got to come to Cincinnati to get their ass kicked.”

Broner (28-1, 22 KOs), who turns 25 on Monday, lost his welterweight belt to Marcos Maidana in December and then moved down to junior welterweight, where he returned on May 3 (on the Floyd Mayweather-Maidana undercard) and easily outpointed Carlos Molina in 10 rounds.

“By the end of the year, I should have a junior welterweight world title,” Broner said.

One name mentioned as a possible opponent for Broner is former lightweight titlist Paul Spadafora. Although Golden Boy said that fight is not in the works, Broner said if they met “Spadafora would get his ass knocked out.”

A more likely opponent is Emanuel Taylor (18-2, 12 KOs), who dropped and outpointed Karim Mayfield on ESPN2 on July 18.

“I heard it could be the guy that just beat Mayfield,” Broner said. “So if I fight him I can shoeshine his ass. What’s his name? I don’t know him. He’s probably a guy who got my autograph. Adrien Broner is willing to fight anyone who will fight him. I think I can make 135 [lightweight], but I don’t want to fight at 135 because they’ll say I’m just bullying the little guys.”

Broner said he is comfortable training to fight at the junior welterweight maximum of 140 pounds, and after Thursday’s session he weighed 145 pounds. He is on the same card as top junior welterweight contender Lucas Matthysse, who is fighting an opponent to be named.

Unfortunately, Broner and Matthysse are not facing each other. That’s a very appealing fight, and Broner said he would be up for it.

“This is what they should do -- they should give me and Lucas Matthysse a warm-up fight at 6 and 7 [p.m.] and then we could fight each other at 11,” he said. “But I don’t know who I am fighting and I don’t care. I just want to fight. I just want somebody to show up on Friday, Sept. 5, at the weigh-in.”
In late June, when Golden Boy Promotions and Showtime announced their Aug. 9 card at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, it was supposed to include three world title bouts -- all of dubious distinction -- but now it's down to two.

In the main event, junior welterweight champ Danny Garcia (28-0, 16 KOs) was slated to defend against Rod Salka (19-3, 3 KOs). But while the fight is still on, the title defense part has changed. Salka is a lightweight who wouldn’t rank in anyone’s top 75 much less warrant a shot at the legitimate 140-pound world title. This is an absolutely laughable matchup.

The co-feature isn’t much better, with Lamont Peterson (32-2-1, 16 KOs) defending his version of the junior welterweight title against unaccomplished 35-year-old Edgar Santana (29-4, 20 KOs), who has never faced a legit contender.

And the opener pits Daniel Jacobs (27-1, 24 KOs), a fine young fighter, against Jarrod Fletcher (18-1, 10 KOs) for a secondary middleweight belt in a fight that is the very definition of why there are too many titles.

Ideally, Garcia and Peterson would be squaring off in the main event, but for some reason they aren’t. Some bogus reasons have been used, such as they’re not ready or it didn’t work out. They’re both with adviser Al Haymon, who could have made the fight in two seconds if he wanted to. Supposedly, they will fight near the end of the year if they both win on Aug. 9.

Instead, Haymon will extract an extra payday from Showtime -- which certainly could have said no -- for two mismatches.

So be it. But at least Garcia-Salka is no longer for a world title. It’s still a mismatch, but a world title isn't on the line.

Now brace yourself, because I am about to agree with the WBC and the WBA, whose titles Garcia holds. That does not happen very often.

Garcia-Salka was recently changed from the 12-round world title fight it was announced as to a 10-round nontitle match at 142 pounds, two over the junior welterweight limit. The reason is because the organizations declined to sanction it, which obviously came as a surprise to Golden Boy and Showtime.

The organizations have sanctioned a lot of horrible mismatches in the past and have had numerous undeserving fighters populate their top 10s in each division, but at least they didn’t try to pass off Salka as a legitimate title contender (although the IBF is doing just that with Santana). Salka is probably a great guy, and by all accounts he is a dedicated and hard worker, but a title contender he is not.

So now I leave it my frenemy, WBC president Mauricio Sulaiman, to explain.

"The WBC is not sanctioning the Garcia versus Salka fight,” he said in a statement given to “Danny Garcia had the opportunity to do one voluntary defense before his mandatory and he opted to fight Salka, who is not eligible to fight for the title. It will not be a WBC title defense. If Garcia loses, the title will be declared vacant. If Garcia wins, he will make his mandatory defense after Salka."
Up-and-coming bantamweight Ivan Morales, younger brother of Mexican legend Erik Morales, had his fight against countryman Sergio Frias (15-3-2, 8 KOs) scheduled for Friday night’s “Golden Boy Live” co-feature (Fox Sports 1/Fox Deportes, 11 ET) canceled on Thursday.

Morales (25-0, 14 KOs) had a visa issue at the U.S. embassy in Tijuana and could not come to the United States for the card at the Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California, according to Golden Boy.

Welterweight prospect Frankie Gomez (17-0, 13 KOs) still meets Vernon Paris (28-1, 16 KOs) in the 10-round main event. An eight-round middleweight fight between 2012 U.S. Olympian Terrell Gausha (10-0, 5 KOs) and Ronnie Warrior Jr. (15-8-1, 5 KOs) has been elevated to the new co-feature.
James Kirkland-Glen TapiaChris Farina/Top RankJames Kirkland, left, has been inactive since his exciting December knockout against Glen Tapia.
One of the more common questions I get these days from #FightFreaks in the non-Mayweather/non-Pacquiao category is: "What's up with James Kirkland?"

Kirkland, of course, is the wildly aggressive and wildly entertaining junior middleweight power puncher with a shaky chin, and that always makes things interesting when he's in the ring.

He was last seen doing a number on Glen Tapia in December, engaging him in a tremendously exciting and competitive fight for three rounds and then beating Tapia down for three more rounds until the fight was finally stopped in the sixth round. It was a big win for Kirkland (32-1, 28 KOs), 30, of Austin, Texas, to bump off the undefeated prospect.

Rather than capitalize on the slugfest that had so many fans talking about him, Kirkland, for what seems like the millionth time, wound up in a layoff and in a snit with his handlers, trying to break contracts with his managers and trainer Ann Wolfe (who has a small percentage of his managerial contract).

That led to yet another layoff, although it's better for Kirkland to have that kind of layoff than some of the others he has had in the past when he was in prison.

So I checked in with Michael Miller, Kirkland's co-manager, on Thursday to see what was going on with the fighter. Miller said the managers had their contract upheld by a judge in March and that they and promoter Curtis "50 Cent" Jackson are trying to line something up for him.

"It's frustrating to watch him sit," Miller said. "James wasn't communicating very well with his promoter, 50 Cent, or with us. But we finally said, 'Why don't we all work together and try to put it back together,' and that's where we are."

Kirkland figures to land a major fight before the end of the year, considering former junior middleweight titlist Canelo Alvarez plans to fight in November, and newly crowned middleweight champ Miguel Cotto intends to fight in December. They both need an opponent and Kirkland would make sense for either.

Miller, who has a good relationship with Eric Gomez, the vice president and matchmaker for Golden Boy, which used to promote Kirkland, said they have been talking about a possible Alvarez fight.

"Eric and I have kicked around the idea of a Canelo fight," Miller said. "We talked about if Canelo was offered would we need a tune-up fight? Kirkland doesn't need a tune up. I said talk to 50 Cent and see if we can put it together. If not, we'll listen to other offers. We're open to suggestions. If Cotto makes sense, of course, we'd listen.

"But the fight Kirkland has wanted is Canelo. He has wanted it forever. He screwed himself two years ago, but he's still motivated to fight Canelo and would take it in a heartbeat."

In May 2012, days after Paul Williams was paralyzed in a motorcycle accident and his September 2012 fight with Alvarez was canceled, Kirkland accepted the fight as a substitute opponent.

But days later, Kirkland dropped out saying his injured shoulder was not 100 percent. But he also said he would go through with the fight for more money. The fight ultimately went to Josesito Lopez.

Miller is hoping to revive the fight with Alvarez or land Cotto.

"We'd prefer Canelo, but Cotto would be fine too," Miller said, adding that he saw Kirkland last weekend and that he was in good shape and weighing about 175 pounds.

Miller also manages junior middleweight Alfredo Angulo, who was stopped by Alvarez in the 10th round in March and has lost two fights in a row by 10th-round stoppage.

Angulo (22-4, 18 KOs), who lost a fantastic fight to Kirkland in 2011, is training with Virgil Hunter in the Bay Area and looking for a fall return.

"I'm hoping to get him on the Floyd Mayweather undercard with Mayweather's approval," Miller said of Mayweather's Sept. 13 rematch against Marcos Maidana. "When I was talking to Eric about Angulo [who is with Golden Boy], that's when Canelo and Kirkland came up," Miller said.
Felix Verdejo, Engelberto ValenzuelaChris Farina/Top RankFelix Verdejo figures to get his stiffest test when he faces Oscar Bravo on Aug. 16 in Puerto Rico.
A few notes from the Top Rank stable:

• Lightweight super prospect Felix Verdejo, a 2012 Puerto Rican Olympian, and one of boxing's fastest-rising prospects, figures to get his stiffest test as a professional on Aug. 16 when he headlines a UniMas-televised card in Caguas, Puerto Rico against experienced Oscar Bravo of Chile.

Verdejo (13-0, 10 KOs) has been blitzing his opponents, knocking out three of his last four in the first round and the other in the third round. So Top Rank matchmaker Brad "Abdul" Goodman went with Bravo (21-5, 9 KOs) as his next opponent because although he lost to such notable opponents as Diego Magdaleno and Will Tomlinson, Bravo went the eight-round and 12-round distance with them. Bravo has never been stopped in his five defeats.

"We need the rounds [for Verdejo]," Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti said. "Oscar Bravo should provide eight highly competitive rounds."

• Moretti said Top Rank has signed 21-year-old junior welterweight prospect Mike Reed (10-0, 6 KOs) of Washington, D.C. Reed turned pro in early 2013 and caught Top Rank's eye when he won a shutout six-round decision against Alberto Morales on its June 14 card in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

"He has a solid amateur background and his hand speed travels faster than bad news," Moretti said. "He's only 21 and has a terrific following from the D.C. area. We look forward to building him and eventually having him featured in TV fights in Washington, D.C., which is a great fight town."

• Former unified lightweight titlist Juan Diaz (39-4, 19 KOs) returns to action to headline a "Solo Boxeo" card on Sept. 6 (UniMas) in Laredo, Texas. He'll go in a 10-rounder against an opponent to be determined. The fight will be Diaz's fifth since he ended a three-year retirement in April 2013.

• Assuming all goes well for 21-year-old junior welterweight prospect Jose Ramirez (10-0, 8 KOs) in his eight-rounder against Alfred Romero on the Aug. 2 Brandon Rios-Diego Chavez undercard in Las Vegas, he will be back to headline a "Solo Boxeo" card on Oct. 25 (UniMas) in his home region of Fresno, California. Ramirez, a 2012 U.S. Olympian, will face an opponent to be named in the eight-round main event.
Former lightweight titlist Brandon Rios has lost two fights in a row: a close decision to Mike Alvarado in their interim junior welterweight rematch, a 2013 fight of the year candidate, followed by a one-sided pasting by Manny Pacquiao in a welterweight fight.

After the loss to Pacquiao in November in Macau, Rios tested positive for a banned stimulant (which didn’t help, because Pacquiao won basically every round in an utterly lopsided fight).
A third loss in a row would be a death knell to Rios’ career in terms of six-figure paydays on major televised cards.

Having served a suspension for the failed drug test, Rios is now aiming to re-establish himself while also making some noise at welterweight by taking on rugged Diego Chaves on Aug. 2 (HBO) at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas.

“I am looking forward to getting back in the ring. I feel like it’s been a long time since I fought. I miss boxing,” Rios said Wednesday at his media day at trainer Robert Garcia’s gym in Oxnard, California. “I know that a lot of people think I am done but believe I am far from being finished. Pacquiao was a very difficult fight for me and I just felt I could have done better, but he was just too fast.”

He won’t have to worry about Argentina’s Chaves having the kind of speed Pacquiao has. Chaves (23-1, 19 KOs) is similar to Rios (31-2-1, 23 KOs) in that he is more likely to stand and brawl than give angles like Pacquiao can.

Chaves showed enormous toughness -- and a fan-friendly style -- last July when he lost his interim welterweight belt by 10th-round knockout to Keith Thurman in San Antonio, Texas, in an excellent fight.

“Chaves is a tough fighter and I expect a good, hard fight and one the fans will enjoy,” Rios said. “I know I could have fought an easier opponent but I want to show everyone what I am still capable of doing against a top-level guy.”

Rios knows it’s a pivotal fight.

“It's do or die for me and I will do what I have to do to win this fight,” Rios said.
Adrien Broner Al Bello/Golden Boy/Golden Boy/Getty ImagesAdrien Broner will return as a junior welterweight to headline a tripleheader Sept. 6.

Junior welterweight contenders Adrien Broner and Lucas Matthysse are both penciled in for Sept. 6 returns on Showtime, although not against each other.

Golden Boy Promotions is working on putting together a tripleheader for the show, which Broner (28-1, 22 KOs) would headline in his second fight since moving down to junior welterweight after losing his welterweight belt to Marcos Maidana in a terrific fight in December. Broner bounced back from a loss on May 3 on the Floyd Mayweather Jr.-Maidana undercard to win a one-sided 10-round decision against Carlos Molina.

“Broner would be the main event with Matthysse as a co-feature. I can confirm that,” Golden Boy Promotions vice president Eric Gomez told “We don’t have a confirmation on a third fight yet. I gave [Showtime’s Stephen Espinoza] a few ideas. He’s supposed to let me know. He’s willing to do a tripleheader, but the third fight is up in the air.”

So are the opponents for Broner and Matthysse, although Gomez has a list of potential foes he said he and Espinoza are discussing.

Although Gomez would love to match Broner and Matthysse with each other at some point, people should not read into their appearance on the same card as any sort of official prelude to such a fight.

“No, they are not fighting each other [on Sept. 6],” Gomez said. “I would love for them to fight each other, but right now it’s just two guys who need to fight. These are two exciting fighters and two of the top guys in the division fighting on the same card.”

The location for the card has not been determined. Gomez said that Broner would like it to be in his hometown of Cincinnati, which is a possibility. South Florida and San Antonio, where Maidana beat Broner, are other possibilities.

Matthysse (35-3, 33 KOs), a big puncher from Argentina, lost a decision in a high-profile fight to unified junior welterweight champion Danny Garcia last September on the Mayweather-Canelo Alvarez undercard and bounced back to stop John Molina in the 11th round in April in a fantastic fight, one that is a leading fight of the year candidate.

When middleweight titlist Gennady Golovkin and former titleholder Daniel Geale square off on Saturday night (HBO, 9:30 ET/PT) at New York’s Madison Square Garden, it will not be the first time they have duked it out.

Back in 2001, at the amateur East Asian Games tournament in Osaka, Japan, Golovkin (29-0, 26 KOs) and Geale (30-2, 16 KOs) met in the welterweight final. Neither fighter remembers much about the showdown other than that Golovkin won a decision.

It was a long time ago and both fighters had a lot of amateur bouts. Golovkin, of Kazakhstan, had more than 300 in an amateur career that included a 2004 Olympic silver medal. Australia’s Geale did not have quite as decorated an amateur career, but he was a 2000 Olympian, whose Olympics came in his home country of Australia.

Golovkin said he "vaguely" recalls the amateur fight with Geale. His scant memories are simply that he "won going away" in a four-round bout with no knockdowns.

Geale said, "It was a long time ago. The only thing I recall is that we got the opportunity to fight at a few different international tournaments, and, for me, it helped me to step up. I got a chance to fight some of the best fighters from places like Russia and Kazakhstan, and I improved. I think I made the next step after. The thing I remember about the fight [with Golovkin] was that it went the distance and I didn’t fight as well as I wanted to. I was disappointed in my performance."

Unlike some amateur rivals who meet as pros, where the experience with each other sometimes means something -- Vernon Forrest and Shane Mosley, for example -- the Golovkin-Geale matchup from 13 years ago has no bearing on Saturday night’s fight.

"This definitely means nothing as far as Saturday goes," Geale said. "It was early on for me. It was early in my international career."

Adamek-Szpilka in the works

July, 22, 2014
Jul 22
A heavyweight crossroads fight between the up-and-coming Artur Szpilka and faded contender Tomasz Adamek is in the works for Nov. 8 in Krakow, Poland, according to the promoters for both.

It would be a major event in Poland, where both fighters are quite popular, and probably quite an entertaining fight. Both are also in need of a victory since they are both coming off losses.

Main Events, Adamek’s promoter, and Warriors Boxing promoter Leon Margules, who co-promotes Szpilka, both said they are working on the deal, although both acknowledged there are still a number of open issues.

The 37-year-old Adamek (49-3, 29 KOs), a longtime contender (not to mention a former world heavyweight title challenger and former light heavyweight and cruiserweight titleholder), seemed to reach the end of the line as a serious threat in his last fight when Vyacheslav "Czar" Glazkov doled out a bit of a beating in a decision win on March 15.

Szpilka (16-1, 12 KOs), a 25-year-old southpaw who seems to still have a bright future, suffered his first loss in January in New York when he was stopped in the 10th round by unbeaten prospect Bryant Jennings.