Just one night of fights this week, but some good stuff on tap.
Saturday, April 10
DAZN, 2:00 pm ET, Conor Benn vs Samuel Vargas, Shannon Courtenay vs Ebanie Bridges, Savannah Marshall vs Femke Hermans. Matchroom return in the UK with a mild step up for Benn, more a test of style for him than a big step up from his last fight against Sebastian Formella. Vargas definitely brings a different, far more aggressive approach than Formella. Courtenay-Bridges is for the vacant WBA belt at 118, while Marshall defends her WBO 160 title against Hermans, as she again maybe looks to stop someone Claressa Shields beat by decision. BLH will have live coverage.
ESPN+, 5:30 pm ET, Smith-Vlasov prelims. The usual suspects. Since Saturday night coverage is split up, the thread will be open and I’ll probably watch early, but we won’t have proper “live coverage” for the entire prelim slate, as I will be switching over to Showtime.
SHO, 9:00 pm ET, Jaron Ennis vs Sergey Lipinets, Eimantas Stanionis vs Thomas Dulorme, Jerwin Ancajas vs Jonathan Rodriguez. Ennis looks to make a bigger mark at 147 and keep banging on the door for a title shot. Lipinets isn’t an elite, but certainly a credible opponent, the best “Boots” has faced to date. Stanionis-Dulorme is actually a WBA eliminator at 147, while Ancajas moves to PBC to defend his IBF junior bantamweight title against Rodriguez, his mandatory challenger. BLH will have live coverage.
ESPN and ESPN+, 10:00 pm ET, Joe Smith Jr vs Maxim Vlasov, Efe Ajagba vs Brian Howard. Delayed from February, but now it’s on. Smith and Vlasov meet for the vacant WBO belt at 175, and this will be Top Rank’s first show outside of the Vegas bubble in over a year, as they’re headed to Tulsa for this one. BLH will have live coverage.