After turning down a fight with unbeaten New Yorker, Sadam Ali (22-0, 13ko), welterweight contender Jessie Vargas (26-1, 9ko) is to sit out the rest of the year, having boxed just the once in 2015.
The solitary outing for the Top Rank promoted Vargas, is of course June’s (interim WBO) challenge to Tim Bradley (who has since been upgraded to full champion), a fight in which Vargas was comfortably out-pointed until some last minute drama in which the final bell sounded 10 seconds early, just at the moment Vargas had Bradley rocked back and stunned.
After a rematch appeal was rejected, Vargas was again looking at a WBO interim title fight with the Golden Boy promoted Ali, however the only stipulation from ‘Team Vargas’ was that the bout was not to take place in Ali’s New York home state.
“The WBO was fine with doing it for the interim title, HBO was fine with it. Everybody knew it was on, and the only thing I said, the only stipulation, was we don’t do the fight in New York,” Vargas’ manager, Cameron Dunkin told ESPN.com “The bottom line is [Ali and Golden Boy] only wanted to fight in New York.”
The December 19th venue Golden Boy secured for the fight is the Turning Stone Resort in Verona, NY, thus putting the kibosh on the scheduled clash by default.
“All I said was just not New York. That was my request. We were ready to fight, and they said it had to be in New York, and they came back and said (Turning Stone) was the site,” Dunkin added. “That was their way out of the fight. That’s what I think. So Jessie will come back next year. I’ll find something else for Jessie, and life goes on.”
That card will now be ably headlined as an HBO ‘Boxing After Dark’ card by American heavyweight contender, Bryant Jennings, squaring off against unbeaten Cuban, Luis Ortiz in their intriguing pre-Xmas clash.