BoxNation will air a world title tripleheader exclusively live this weekend as the light-middleweight division takes centre stage.
Cuban hotshot Erislandy Lara rematches U.S. Olympian and top contender Vanes Martirosyan as he puts his WBA light-middleweight world title on the line at The Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas this Saturday night.
The pair met previously in 2012 in an intriguing matchup with neither man claiming the victory as the judges scored it a draw after the fight was stopped in the ninth round due to an accidental headbutt that caused a cut to the eye of Martirosyan.
Both men will now be looking to settle an old score and are out to stake their claim in a division stacked with top talent, including Liverpool’s Liam Smith who is set to defend his WBO world title exclusively live on BoxNation on June 4th.
“I’m looking forward and I’m excited to be making my 2016 debut in the boxing capital of Las Vegas come May 21,” said Lara. “I can’t wait to get in the ring as I have unfinished business to take care of with Vanes. I’m the champion and will remain the champion. I will leave no doubt who the better fighter is and will show the world that I’m the best fighter in the 154-pound division.”
“Erislandy Lara and I have unfinished business from our first fight,” said Martirosyan. “I had him beat that night and I’ll beat him on Saturday night. My time is now and I know I will be the new champion of the world on May 21.”
The card also sees IBF light-middleweight world champion Jermall Charlo out in action as he faces his toughest fight to date when he squares up against former world champion Austin Trout.
Trout has shared the ring with some of boxing’s biggest names including Canelo Alvarez and Miguel Cotto and will be looking to make a major comeback to the 154-pound division with a victory over the so far undefeated Charlo.
Twin brother Jermell will also feature on the night when he takes on the big-punching John Jackson, son of one of boxing’s hardest hitters Julian Jackson, for the vacant WBC light-middleweight world title.
25-year-old Charlo like his sibling is undefeated and will be making his first stab at the world title.
“This will be a history-making, record-breaking night for the Charlo twins,” said Jermall Charlo. “It means everything to us to be able to fight in two championship fights on the same card. This is everything we’ve ever dreamed of. This is going to be a great night of boxing and I’m preparing myself for war. Austin Trout is a seasoned vet. He’s fought world champions and beaten a future Hall of Famer in Miguel Cotto. This is one of my biggest fights to date, but I’m preparing the same way I always do. I’m going to be on my ‘A’ game. I’m ready to make history.”
“I’m extremely excited and grateful for the opportunity to fight for the world title on May 21,” said Trout. “It’s a twice-in-a-lifetime chance for a second world title and I’m going to take full advantage of it. I’ve sat at the champions’ table before and am ready to go back again and eat from it again. Destiny brought me here not to lose, but to win. I’m going to show up and show out and win this world title.”
“This is a huge fight for me,” said Jermell Charlo. “It’s my first opportunity to fight for a title and my brother is on the same card defending his belt. There have never been identical twin brothers that are both world champions in the same weight class. We’re going to go out there and make history and send a message to the whole division. I’m excited to get in the ring and I know John Jackson is too. This is an important time in my career and I will be well prepared. Let the best man win.”
“I’m very grateful for this opportunity to become a world champion,” said Jackson. “I’ve been training very hard for the last two months for this fight and come Saturday night I will be victorious over Jermell Charlo and realise my lifelong dream of becoming a world champion, like my dad, the great Julian Jackson.”
To watch Lara v Charlo v Trout exclusively live on BoxNation (Sky/Freeview/Virgin/TalkTalk/Online & App) this Saturday night, go to boxnation.com to subscribe.
The 154-pound division will take center stage on Saturday, May 21 in a SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING tripleheader featuring three world title fights in the same division. In a rare showcase of the division’s elite, five of the top-six super welterweights* will square off live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. Venue and ticket information are forthcoming.
In the main event, Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara—the consensus No. 1 fighter at 154 pounds—will defend his WBA Super Welterweight World Championship against U.S. Olympian and top contender Vanes “The Nightmare” Martirosyan in a rematch of their 2012 bout that ended in a technical draw.
Brothers Jermall and Jermell Charlo will look to make history in co-featured bouts as the first twins to hold world titles in the same division. Unbeaten IBF Super Welterweight World Champion Jermall faces his toughest test when he makes the second defense of his belt against former world champion Austin “No Doubt” Trout. Jermell will take on exciting contender John Jackson in a bout for the vacant WBC Super Welterweight World Championship.
The event is being promoted by Mayweather Promotions and TGB Promotions.
With five of the top-six ranked fighters on the telecast, the May 21 matchups join an already stellar slate of recently announced boxing events on SHOWTIME. The super welterweights join the top fighters at featherweight, welterweight, super middleweight and heavyweight in a series of fights that features accomplished champions and young stars facing each other in the most significant divisional matches that can be made.
“This is yet another example of SHOWTIME Sports’ commitment to delivering the best lineup in boxing,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President & General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports. “We’re featuring three important championship fights in one of boxing’s most intriguing young divisions – a tripleheader that will bring our 2016 tally of world title bouts to 14 – all free to SHOWTIME subscribers. We’re excited to offer this rare opportunity to see the top fighters in a division all on the same telecast.”
“Mayweather Promotions is thrilled to bring this fantastic tripleheader of super welterweight world champions to fight fans,” said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. “The best of the 154-pound division will be on display on May 21 and we expect an action-packed night of drama.”
“We’re very excited to work with SHOWTIME on this action-packed tripleheader,” said Tom Brown of TGB Promotions. “Erislandy Lara and Vanes Martirosyan have a huge score to settle from their 2012 bout, and Jermall and Jermell Charlo are in high-stakes matchups against Austin Trout and John Jackson, respectively, in what promises to be a highly entertaining evening of boxing.”
A technical master, Lara is considered one of the toughest men to beat in the sport and will look to continue his reign at 154 pounds against the always-game Martirosyan, who is set on becoming a world champion on his second try.
The 25-year-old Charlos are aiming for history against stiff opposition from a former champion in Trout and the Olympian from the Virgin Islands in Jackson.
The 32-year-old Lara is a slick boxer with the ability to deliver punishment while taking very little of it in return. Lara has notched victories over Alfredo Angulo, Austin Trout, Ishe Smith and Freddy Hernandez. As an amateur, Lara won numerous titles including a national championship at welterweight and also participated in the 2007 Pan-Am games. The fighter originally from Guantanamo, Cuba dominated Delvin Rodriguez in June of last year and followed that up with a third-round stoppage of former champion Jan Zaveck.
Born in Armenia, but fighting out of Glendale, Calif., Martirosyan represented the U.S. at the 2004 Olympics. As a professional, he won his first 32 fights before fighting Lara to a draw in 2012. The 29-year-old suffered a narrow defeat by split decision in his first world title shot against Demetrius Andrade, but has rebounded with solid victories over Mario Lozano, Willie Nelson and most recently Ishe Smith.
A newly crowned champion at 25-years-old, Charlo grabbed his title with a dominant third-round stoppage of Cornelius Bundrage in September 2015. Residing in Houston, Charlo built up his resume in 2014 with dominant triumphs over Hector Munoz, Norberto Gonzale, Lenny Bottai and Michael Finney. In his most recent outing, he successfully defended his title with a fourth-round stoppage of Wilky Campfort in November.
In 2004, Trout won the U.S. National Amateur welterweight championship and after climbing up the ranks as an elite pro boxer, he won a super welterweight world championship in 2011 by defeating Rigoberto Alvarez. He went on to make four successful defenses, including a career-best, dominant victory over Miguel Cotto in New York. He is currently on a four-fight win streak after knocking out Joey Hernandez in September to set up his world title opportunity.
Younger-by-one-minute than Jermall, Jermell Charlo is a highly ranked young fighter looking to get one step closer to a world title shot. A tall fighter for his division, the 25-year-old earned his shot at a world title with victories over Gabriel Rosado, Charlie Ota and Mario Lozano in 2014 and Martirosyan and former world champion Joachim Alcine in 2015. He impressed last time out by disposing of Alcine in the sixth-round of their fight in Houston in October.
Since representing his native Virgin Islands in the 2008 Olympics, Jackson has put together an impressive pro career. The St. Thomas-born fighter won his initial 13 fights after making his debut in January 2009. The 27-year-old earned the No. 1 spot and the title shot with a shutout victory over Dennis Laurente in August. Jackson comes from a fighting family; his father John David Jackson was a world champion and feared power-puncher while his brother, Julius, is a contender in the 168-pound weight class.