Sweet Science Scene: Michael Rivera keeps winning and O’Shaquie Foster talks Chris Colbert

sweet science Jon Fernandez
Photo: Boxing Photos

It was a relatively quiet week in the boxing world though there was one main card on Showtime and from it, we received a solid performance and a great knockout. We had Michel Rivera, who kept his undefeated mark going (21-0, 14 KOs) as he knocked out Jon Fernandez (21-2, 18 KOs) in eight rounds of a good fight. This fight saw Rivera go down, but he responded well and eventually closed the show. The Sweet Science did not disappoint despite the light show schedule.

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The Rivera-Fernandez fight was the co-main event to the fight between up and comer Chris Colbert and Tugstsogt Nyambayar. Nyambayar was a last-minute replacement in essence and gave it his all but was still beaten by a 12-round unanimous decision at the hands of Colbert. The fight early on was fun and competitive early on, but from the midway point of the bout, Colbert made adjustments and used his jab at will to dominate the fight. It was still a good fight and competitive, but the scorecards were rightfully wide as Colbert won big, but Nyambayar was always there. Colbert mentioned after the fight that he was number one in the WBA 130-pound rankings and mentioned former champion Leo Santa Cruz as a possible opponent. The Sweet Science schedule is heating up and fans are excited about the near-term future.

Let’s all slow down on the possibility of Canelo Alvarez and Caleb Plant not meeting this September. The rumors came out that the negotiations weren’t going well and that Canelo could be looking elsewhere and because of now being a little more than two months from the fight people start listening to these rumors. Now it’s not to discredit the rumors, but there’s still time and as we heard Eddie Hearn made an initial offer to Plant’s team on Monday and that it’s Canelo’s preferred fight of choice. Yes, we heard Charlo, Spence, Benavidez and Beterbiev mentioned, but it could’ve been used to make Plant get to the table quicker and make the deal. If the fight isn’t to happen it would be a loss as we love the undisputed fights for the sweet science, but we will get to that bridge if we get there. As of now relax and let it play out in private.

Sweet Science Quick hits

  • This week’s GoldenBoy Promotions card from Banc of California Stadium is a very solid card and a great piece of the sweet science matchmaking. The main event a light heavyweight tilt between Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez and Sullivan Barrera is intriguing. Barrera may have seen his best days go by, but Ramirez hasn’t been all that active recently and this being his debut with GoldenBoy it’s a big spot for him with a possible title fight later this year. The co-main event between Joseph “JoJo” Diaz and Javier Fortuna is a fight nobody thought of four months ago, but after Ryan Garcia had to pull out for mental health reasons Diaz jumped up and asked for the fight. It’s an intriguing fight as most at 135 don’t want to fight Fortuna as he is a big risk and Diaz coming up from 130 called for it with no hesitation. There will also be two women’s title fights on the card featuring Seniesa “Superbad” Estrada and Tenkai Tsunami and also Sulem Urbina and Naoko Fujioka. This women’s matchup is under the sweet science radar but, known to the hardcore will be Hector Tanajara and William Zepeda both undefeated prospects looking to leave a good impression. This card will begin at 12:15 P.M. Pacific 2:15 P.M. Central and 3:15 P.M. eastern on Facebook watch Golden Boy fight Night. Then the main card begins at 6 P.M. Pacific on DAZN.
  • One of the top-rated Super featherweights in the world O’Shaquie Foster had a lot to say about Chris Colbert during fight week and said he would love to face him before and after his fight. I’m all for it.  Foster is a big threat at the Jr lightweight division and carries power and skill that would make for an interesting fight. Foster has confidence in himself and wants to test himself against other good fighters and that’s always something to admire.
  • The news came out that Josh Warrington will try and avenge his only professional loss as he rematches Mexico’s Mauricio Lara on September 4th. It’s strange to say, but this could be a make-or-break fight for Warrington. He was in discussions for unifications seemingly for a couple of years and had beaten a few top ten foes, but when he dropped his IBF Featherweight title to pursue other options instead of a mandatory fight many wondered if it was right. Warrington then took what was looked at as a stay busy fight against little-known Lara and it turned out to be a nightmare as Lara battered Warrington and knocked him out in round 9. The reason it could make or break is that many questions arose about Warrington and another devasting loss could really push him down the ladder quickly. Here’s hoping we have a good fight and see what comes out of it.
  • It was announced as well that the Welterweight title fight between Manny Pacquiao and Errol Spence will be also for the Ring title. The special part is that the ring title fights are usually reserved for the number one and number two fighters of the respective division. Pacquiao and Spence are rated as number one are Spence and number three is Pacquiao. Terrence Crawford is number two, but fights for him with either Spence or Pacquiao have yet to happen. This matchup with Pacquiao and Spence will take place on August 21stand who knows maybe a Crawford fight will follow for the winner.
  • Devin Haney has not resigned with Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Boxing so he is now a free agent. This news leaves the options available for Haney with any promotion and fighter. Hopefully, the big fights can be made for Haney as he said he wants to challenge the best and this could be a step in that direction. The sweet science needs fights like this.

Not to be a Rueda…but

There needs to be a change of attitude amongst those who love the Sweet Science. Certain platforms or promotions are rooted for to fail in boxing and those who do this also call fighters bums to try and downplay one fighter to build up another. Yes, some may be lesser opposition, but there are no bums in Boxing. These fighters risk their lives every time they step in the ring show some respect. There is so much unnecessary hate towards the PBC and they have put on some great fights for the fans. There’s the constant trashing of Golden Boy, but yet you always hear about how solid of a card they just put on. Top Rank always gets shots taken at it, but they gave us an Undisputed fight in May and we’re the first promotions to return during the pandemic with their bubble. Matchroom gets hate as well but has delivered some solid cards and some big upsets this year.

Boxing is not a team sport where you can’t say hopefully this one fails and so on, because if one goes down, it affects the whole sport. Wanting the streaming platforms to fail because you don’t like the promoters on there is crazy. You don’t have to be a fan of fighters and have your favorites and that’s ok, but to wish failure on a promoter and claim allegiance to another is a mistake for the Sweet Science. We want the best fights to happen and with promotions already in cold wars and such with each other and then fans trying to diminish them more isn’t going to help. Be fans of the sports, support your fighters and enjoy the sport, but no need to bash another promotion to build another up. There’s room for all and the more it’s respected, the better fights will be made.

The Sweet Science is special. Root for great competition – not the failure of others.