The 12-round main event on the April 19 edition of ESPN’s Friday Night Fights presented by Corona Extra will feature an interim WBA Title fight between undefeated interim Featherweight titlist Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna (21-0, 1 NC, 15 KOs, The Ring No. 10) and Miguel “Michael” Zamudio (24-1-1, 13 KOs). Friday’s show from the Tropicana Resort & Casino in Atlantic City, N.J., will air live at 10:30 p.m. ET (rather than its usual 9 p.m. start time) on ESPN2 HD, ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN. Friday’s show will later be televised Saturday, April 20, at 2:30 a.m. on ESPNEWS. The card is promoted by Sampson Boxing.
Bernardo Osuna (@osunaespn), filling in for Joe Tessitore, will be ringside with Teddy Atlas describing the action for ESPN2 HD, while studio host Todd Grisham (@GrishamESPN) will provide the latest boxing news and highlights. Alex Pombo and Delvin Rodriguez will call the fights for ESPN Deportes’ Viernes de Combates (Friday Night Fights) with Leopoldo Gonzalez and Pablo Viruega in the studio.
Friday’s studio show will recap last Saturday’s Junior Featherweight Championship fight between Nonito Donaire and Guillermo Rigondeaux. Rigondeaux, who defeated Donaire in a 12-round unanimous decision, retained his WBA Junior Featherweight title and added the WBO Junior Featherweight belt. The show will also discuss this Saturday’s Saúl Canelo Álvarez-Austin Trout Junior Middleweight title fight and the fight between Heavyweight contender Tyson Fury and former Cruiserweight titlist Steve Cunningham.
California’s Fortuna, a stablemate of Middleweight champion Sergio Martinez, won the WBA interim Featherweight world title in December with a 12-round unanimous decision over previously undefeated Patrick Hyland.
After the fight, ESPN.com boxing writer Dan Rafael wrote, “Fortuna has looked sensational in some of his fights and has scored some tremendous knockouts, including in his previous two fights – a first-round blowout of fellow prospect Yuandale Evans and a second-round stoppage of former Featherweight titlist Cristobal Cruz. Fortuna burst to a big lead over the first half of this fight, but Hyland hung in there and tried to make it a brawl. Hyland, who had never faced a quality opponent, showed toughness and a good chin but little else as Fortuna boxed circles around him.”
Mexico’s Zamudio, who is making his U.S. debut, won an eight-round split decision over Gilberto Bolanos in his last fight.
“I like the way Fortuna fights,” Zamudio said. “I respect him, but in the ring it will be totally different. This will be the first time that I’ve been to the United States. My dream is to be champion of the world, and I want to make my dream come true. I’m going to win this fight.”
Friday’s eight-round co-feature will pit undefeated Jr. Middleweight “Sir” Cerresso Fort (16-0-1, 11 KOs) against 2008 Olympian John “The Rock” Jackson (15-1, 14 KOs). Cerresso is coming off an eight-round unanimous decision win over Dennis Sharpe, while Jackson won a first-round TKO over Ramon Pena in his last fight.
Friday’s card will open with a six-round bout between undefeated Welterweights Emmanuel Lartey (15-0, 8 KOs) and Jhonathan Batista (13-0, 6 KOs).