The heavyweights are still talking, Gary Russell Jr says he’s a free agent, and BKFC is bringing a real circus to Tampa next month.
Miss anything on Monday? Ketchup!
In what is perhaps the most interesting if not biggest story of the day, Gary Russell Jr says he’s a free agent, and that he can make a deal to fight anyone on any network if need be. If true, that could set Russell up for a move to 130 to face Miguel Berchelt at some point, which he says he’d do.
Of course, Berchelt probably will only fight the one more time this year, and right now that’s aimed to be a unification with the winner of Saturday’s Masayuki Ito-Jamel Herring WBO fight on ESPN. Russell has the WBC belt and 126 and his No. 1 target, he says, is unification with Leo Santa Cruz.
The heavyweights are still talking, as they do. Deontay Wilder assures fans that fights with Anthony Joshua and Tyson Fury will happen. Eddie Hearn says there are no excuses to not do Joshua-Wilder next. And Tyson Fury has invited Deontay Wilder to suck his nuts.
As for Joshua, he’s gearing up to fight Andy Ruiz Jr, and while a lot of people who don’t know much if anything about Ruiz are laughing about the challenger’s physique, Joshua is taking him very seriously.
- Paulie Malignaggi’s debut for Bare Knuckle FC will come on June 22, live on pay-per-view, against Conor McGregor friend and UFC vet Artem Lobov. The two had a ridiculous press conference in which Malignaggi played batshit insane. We’re going to have live coverage of that show on June 22 because there’s no boxing that night for some reason. Maybe everyone was too scared to compete with the rowdy superstars of BKFC. The show will be held in Tampa, where the commission isn’t actually going to let them fight without gloves. There will be gloves with no knuckles, but gloves.
- The Pacquiao-Thurman card is starting to come together. The show will be held at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and it looks like Yordenis Ugas will face Omar Figueroa Jr in a WBC welterweight eliminator, which I think is a potentially fascinating style clash.
- WBO junior flyweight titleholder Angel “Tito” Acosta will face Elwin Soto on DAZN’s June 21 show, and Jorge Linares is off that event due to a cut in sparring.
- MTK Global’s July 6 show in Kazakhstan will feature returns for welterweight Zhankosh Turarov, WBC bantamweight titleholder Nordine Oubaali, and Irish featherweight Davey Oliver Joyce, who is not British heavyweight Joe Joyce.
- Michael Woods gave us a report of Saturday’s Facebook FightNight Live show, which he was on hand to call from ringside, and featured a win for 6’4” middleweight contender Alantez Fox.