RTL has announced that former cruiserweight champion and WBC #2 Marco Huck (40-3-1, 27 KOs) will return against WBC #1 Mairis Briedis (21-0, 18 KOs) on April 1 at the Westfalenhalle in Dortmund, Germany. Huck-Briedis will be for the WBC interim cruiserweight title, since current champion Tony Bellew will be moving up to heavyweight for a grudge match with David Haye on March 4. If Bellew beats Haye and decides to stay at heavyweight, then the Huck-Briedis winner will get the full belt. If Bellew loses to Haye and returns to cruiserweight, then he must defend against the Huck-Briedis winner.
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Despite a New Year promising health and regeneration, boxing wouldn’t be itself without dredging up the perennial, Sisyphean question of the post-Floyd Mayweather Jr. age from its swampy habitat: Will “Money May” ever step through the ropes of a professional ring again? A firm answer will most likely forever elude us but if Saturday night’s card, headlined by Badou Jack vs. James DeGale, at Brooklyn’s Barclays Center, was any indication, Mayweather is in no rush to fight again, even as appealing – if apocryphal – eight-figure offers are continually sent his way.
With the limelight squarely on him – this time as a promoter – Mayweather, sporting a red-and-white checkered shirt and faux-tux blazer that made him look more like a bellboy than a Big Kahuna, took up the media room pulpit and began to lecture – the first part of a night-long seminar – a throng of reporters on everything from growing up in a Michigan slum to buying car rims. In short, this was Mayweather in prime form, back in the eye of the promotional hurricane. Against our better judgment, we left our press seats and huddled into the press room, training our click-bait eyes on the bully pulpit, even though, out on the floor, a very good scrap between middleweights Ievgen Khytrov and Immanuwel Aleem was taking place. (By the way, who schedules a press conference in the middle of a televised card?)
Hubris, as the Greeks were well aware, is a terribly progenitive force and Mayweather brandishes his version without exhaustion. Forget that the presser he was helming was for Adrien Broner’s February fight against Adrian Granados – at least that’s what one could glean from the backdrop. Forget that Broner, as garrulous as anyone in the fight racket, was reduced to a mum puppet on the dais. A few journalists tried to re-focus the presser by asking questions specifically about Broner’s preparation and how he planned to conduct himself against Granados – but to little avail. It was clear that on this night, any discussion of boxing, specifically the achievements and dreams of the young fighters under the TMT promotional wheelhouse, would have to be prefaced and justified by episodes from Mayweather’s own life. Remember Arturo Gatti? Oscar De La Hoya? Marcos Maidana, boy, was he a tough puncher, etc. “I’m talented and God-gifted,” Mayweather declared, as if discovering this combination, …read more