Pick It: TBRB #4 Joseph Parker vs. #5 Joe Joyce (Saturday, ESPN+, 1:00 PM EST)
The Klitschko era in heavyweight boxing was often decried as dull but it wasn’t just a reflection of sibling dominance. How many memorable top heavyweight fights featuring anyone else were particularly memorable? The guys outside the title picture matter too and it’s one of the reasons the last six-seven years have increased praise for the division.
We’ve had what feels like more fun scraps featuring an assortment of players, including both the men fighting this weekend. This match has the potential 30-year old former WBO titlist Joseph Parker (30-2, 21 KO) and 37-year old 2016 Olympic Silver Medalist Joe Joyce (14-0, 13 KO) is a fight without a certain winner headed in. Both men need it. Both men can bang. Heavyweight boxing doesn’t need a whole lot more to be interesting but the fact that this pits two of the consensus top heavyweights in the world against each other gives it some meaning too.
Additional Shows to Watch For
Friday – Lopez vs. Gonzalez (ProBoxTV, 9:00 PM EST)
Jr. featherweights take center stage in this main event on the streaming service. 25-year old Crisofer Lopez (15-0-1, 10 KO) enters off consecutive ten-round decision wins. 22-year old Alejandro Gonzalez (11-4-2, 6 KO) broke a two-fight losing streak in his last outing and has only been stopped once.
Friday – Stevenson vs. #8 Conceicao (ESPN, 10:00 PM EST)
25-year old 2016 Olympic Silver Medalist Shakur Stevenson (18-0, 9 KO) is now a former Jr. lightweight champion after missing weight. Stevenson’s belts will still be on the line for 33-year old 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist Robson Conceicao (17-1, 8 KO). The fight will still go forward and we’ve seen this story before. Promising young stars fighting well below where they probably should on the scale, missing weight and expecting their foes to show up anyways for a little more money isn’t new. Whether Conceicao has a depleted Stevenson on his hands or his chances of winning, already narrow, are further depleted remains to be seen.
Saturday – Galahad vs. Hughes (DAZN, 2:00 PM EST)
It’s been almost a year since 32-year old former featherweight titlist Kid Galahad (28-2, 17 KO) was stunned by a Kiko Martinez long considered past viable. It was Galahad’s first stoppage loss and the rebound begins here. 32-year old Maxi Hughes (25-5-2, 5 KO) presents no real power threat on paper and has been stopped twice.
Saturday – Mayweather vs. Asakura (Fite TV, 11:00 PM EST)
Fans who just like watching one of the great fighters of all time make some easy money showing off some of what made him great can drop roughly 30 bills on this exhibition. Floyd Mayweather will have some fun with Mikuru Asakura. It’s there if you want it.
Cliff Rold is the Managing Editor of BoxingScene, a founding member of the Transnational Boxing Rankings Board, a member of the International Boxing Research Organization, and a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org