- Dan Rafael, ESPN Senior Writer
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Argentine slugger Lucas Matthysse, who has emerged as one of the most exciting fighters in boxing, will defend his interim junior welterweight belt against Philadelphia contender "Hammerin' " Hank Lundy on Jan. 19, Golden Boy Promotions chief executive Richard Schaefer told ESPN.com Tuesday.
The bout, which will be part of a Showtime-televised tripleheader, will take place on the undercard of the previously announced main event between welterweight titleholder Devon Alexander (24-1, 13 KOs) of St. Louis and England's Kell Brook (29-0, 19 KOs), his mandatory challenger. The card will take place at the Nokia Theater in downtown Los Angeles, Schaefer said.
"If there would be a pound-for-pound (list) of the most exciting fighters in the world, Lucas Matthysse would be at or near the top, and he is always must-see TV," Schaefer said. "I am very happy to have him back in January and if all goes well, we plan to bring him back in May for a big fight."
Schaefer said he would like to eventually match Matthysse with his fellow power-hitting countryman Marcos Maidana, a fight many fans have been asking for.
"My dream is still to eventually do Maidana versus Matthysse, but first things first," Schaefer said. "With Lundy, he is facing a determined fighter who realizes this is a big opportunity."
Golden Boy matchmaker Robert Diaz said that the opening bout of the telecast would pit Turkish welterweight Selcuk Aydin (23-1, 17 KOs) against Mexico's Jesus Soto Karass (26-8-3, 17 KOs), both of whom are regularly in action-packed fights.
Aydin is coming off his first defeat, a unanimous decision loss to Robert Guerrero for an interim 147-pound belt in July. Soto Karass also is coming off a loss, getting stopped in the eighth round by Maidana in a September brawl.
The 30-year-old Matthysse (32-2, 30 KOs) has scored two significant victories in a row. In June, he stopped former lightweight titleholder Humberto Soto in the fifth round of a slugfest, and in September he stopped Olusegun Ajose in the 10th round of an all-action fight to claim a vacant interim belt.
Matthysse's only defeats have come on split decisions to Zab Judah and Alexander in their hometowns on debatable results.
Lundy, 28, sent former lightweight titlist David Diaz into retirement after knocking him out in the sixth round in August 2011, then scored a clear 10-round unanimous decision against dangerous puncher Dannie Williams. But Lundy (22-2-1, 11 KOs) lost his next bout, a 10-round majority decision July 27 on ESPN2's "Friday Night Fights."
Alexander will be making the first defense of the 147-pound title he won by unanimous decision against Randall Bailey on Oct. 20 on the first boxing card held at the new Barclays Center in Brooklyn, N.Y. That was the same day Brook knocked out Argentina's Hector Saldivia in the third round in England in a final elimination bout that earned him the shot at Alexander's title.