Rarely do contemporary fight fans enjoy a matchup between two unbeaten champions.
The factors causing the infrequency of such bouts range from fighters’ angling a move to a higher weight class to their conflicting tie-ins with promoters and TV networks.
Another factor often raised by fans is the “overprotection” of a fighter’s record by his management group.
Terence Crawford and Viktor Postol — who have identical 28-0 records — will defy the norm and provide fans a seldom-showcased bout between two undefeated boxers.
Sign Up and Save
Get six months of free digital access to the Miami Herald
On July 23, Crawford and Postol will meet in a 140-pound title unification fight at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Many independent ratings consider Crawford and Postol the top fighters in the super-lightweight or junior-welterweight division.
In addition to their willingness to take a risk, the match became possible because Top Rank promotes both fighters.
Moreover, HBO has televised their recent fights. And, in an attempt to further test the fighters’ appeals, HBO is elevating the bout to pay-per-view status.
“I’m looking forward to putting a great performance — my first pay-per-view and I’m looking for many more to come,” Crawford said in a news conference two weeks ago.
AROUND THE RING
▪ After repeated delays that spanned more than five years, the trial involving Miami-based promotional company All-Star Boxing and former middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez will begin Monday in Miami-Dade County Civil Court.
All-Star Boxing, headed by Felix “Tutico” Zabala Jr., accuses Alvarez of breaching a contract he signed with the promoter eight years ago.
Alvarez, who has risen as the sport’s top pay-per view attraction, instead became the signature fighter of Golden Boy Promotions. Under the direction of Oscar De La Hoya, Golden Boy Promotions also is named in the lawsuit.
Alvarez vacated his World Boxing Council middleweight title last week instead of abiding by the WBC’s imposed deadline to reach a deal for a mandatory defense and unification title bout against Gennady Golovkin.
▪ Erislandy Lara called out Alvarez and Golovkin for future bouts after the Cuban native solidified his status as the top 154-pound fighter late Saturday. Lara won a unanimous decision against Vanes Martirosyan and retained his two super-welterweight belts in Las Vegas.
Using solid lead and counter lefts to the head, Lara (23-2-2) withstood body shots from Martirosyan. But Martirosyan (36-3-1) also was warned repeatedly for landing punches below the belt until referee Vic Drakulich deducted a point in the 11th round.
Two judges scored the bout for Lara, 116-111, and the third also had him winning, 115-112. The fight was a rematch of a 2012 bout that was declared a technical draw after Martirosyan sustained a deep eye cut following an accidental clash of heads and could not continue fighting.
“I’m a very intelligent fighter and at no point did I fear this fight was lost,” Lara said. “I’m ready to fight Golovkin or Canelo.”
Lara has said he would move to middleweight and face Golovkin without catch-weight stipulations.
Earlier on the card, twins Jermall and Jermell Charlo won their 154-pound world title fights.
Jermall Charlo (24-0) retained his International Boxing Federation belt with a unanimous decision over former champion Austin Trout.
Jermell Charlo (28-0, 13 KOs) preceded his brother to the ring and knocked out John Jackson in the eighth round to capture the vacant World Boxing Council title.
▪ Two local fighters fought in Europe last week and returned to South Florida with knockout victories. Miami resident Yunier Dorticos won a second-tier sanctioning body cruiserweight world title with his 10th-round TKO of Youri Kalenga on Friday in Paris. A native of Cuba, Dorticos is 21-0 with 20 knockouts.
On Saturday night, former heavyweight champion and Pembroke Pines resident Shannon Briggs stopped Emilio Zarate in the first round in London. The 44-year-old Briggs (60-6, 53 KOs) has won nine consecutive bouts by knockout since resuming his career two years ago following a four-year absence.
Friday (9 p.m., CBS Sports Network): Jarrell Miller vs. Nick Guivas, 10, heavyweights.
Saturday (10 p.m., Fox Sports1): Miguel Vazquez vs. Erick Bone, 10, junior-welterweights.
Saturday (10:30 p.m., CBS Sports Network): David Avanesyan vs. Shane Mosley, 12, welterweights.