De La Hoya vs Ruiz, Friday night 2.00am, BoxNation
Just like Nigel Clough, Dale Earnhardt Jr and Ryan Couture, Diego De La Hoya is enjoying sporting attention as a result of his family name, but the man affectionately know as ‘Oscar’s cousin’ is quietly building an impressive career of his own.
Now 11-0, De La Hoya competes in his fourth fight of the year against Mexico’s Jesus Ruiz in a ten round super bantamweight clash.
34-6-5 since making his debut as a 16-year-old nine years ago, Ruiz is best known for being knocked out by Leo Santa Cruz last January, and has built a respectable record based on beating mostly middling opposition.
If De La Hoya is anywhere near as good as his name suggests, he should comfortably dispatch the tough, but limited Ruiz within the distance.
Warrington vs Brunker, Saturday night 7.30pm, Sky Sports 1
After a summer break, British boxing returns to television where Josh Warrington defends his Commonwealth featherweight title against Australia’s Joel Brunker.
The undefeated Warrington has built up an impressive fan base in Leeds, and he headlines the First Direct Arena for the fourth time in his career.
Brunker has only lost once as a professional in 29 fights, but the manner of his defeat to Lee Selby last year was a brutal reminder of how dangerous it can be to feast on mediocrity instead of facing progressive opponents.
The Australian was dominated from the opening bell by Selby, and was eventually stopped in the ninth round.
Warrington has defeated a string of respectable British and European rivals over the past two years, and his efficient style and constant pressure should be too much for Brunker.
Although Brunker triumphed over journeyman Ray Laspinas in February and has talked a good game in the build-up to this bout, the odds reflect the recent history of both boxers, with Warrington an overwhelming 2/9 favourite.
A very poor undercard is headlined by Martin Murray, who competes in his third super middleweight fight against Jose Miguel Torres.
Despite having fought in three middleweight world title matches, and being on the cusp of a potential fourth attempt at world honours at his new weight class, Murray’s opponent will add nothing to his career, except an added tally in the win column.
Instead of facing a genuine super middleweight who can help him adjust to the new weight, Torres is a fighter who fought under the middleweight limit in his last bout, and has never weighed in at more than 161 pounds in any of his matches.
The Colombian was defeated at Welterweight in 2008, at which point Murray was winning Prizefighter two divisions higher.
Put simply, this is a disgraceful fight which will achieve nothing for either man, and is exactly the sort of contest which should be untelevised, rather than being made the co-main event of a Sky Sports card.
More ticking over fights populate the undercard, where Tony Bellew, Stuart Hall and Khalid Yafai will all add wins to their record.
Braehmer vs Konrad, Saturday night 7.30pm, Sky Sports 1
It says something about the state of boxing at the moment, when Martin Murray vs Jose Miguel Torres is not the worst fight of the weekend.
That honour belongs to the WBA light heavyweight title match in Sachsen, Germany, where champion Juergen Braehmer defends his title against Konni Konrad.
Braehmer has not been defeated since 2008, but that could be because of opponents like this.
After fighting just 24 times in 13 years, Konrad has somehow has been awarded an opportunity to fight for the world title despite his last six victories being earned over men who have a combined record of 74-67.
Isn’t Strictly Come Dancing back on Saturday night? Watch that instead, it even has London 2012 Olympic Games bronze medalist Anthony Ogogo as a contestant.
McDonnell vs Kameda, Sunday night 9.00pm, Sky Sports 5
The final card of the weekend is undoubtedly the best, as Jamie McDonnell defends his WBA bantamweight title against the man he defeated to win the championship, Japan’s Tomoki Kameda.
This rematch takes place just four months after their initial bout, which McDonnell won by a single round on all three scorecards.
Kameda floored the Doncaster man in the third round, but could not handle the late rally from his opponent, who has quietly established himself as one of Britain’s most talented fighters.
Such was the closeness of their first match and the short amount of turnaround time, the bookmakers can barely split the two, with Kameda a narrow 4/5 favourite.