Unbeaten super middleweight Anthony Dirrell, 28, of Flint, Mich., and unbeaten welterweight prospect Antonio Orozco, 25, of San Diego, will highlight a May 3 card at the Cosmopolitan in Las Vegas the night before Floyd Mayweather Jr. defends his WBC 147-pound title against Robert Guerrero at the MGM.
Dirrell (24-0, 21 knockouts), is the younger brother of fellow super middleweight contender Andre Dirrell, will be after his 10th consecutive knockout victory against an opponent to be determined. He has not been in the ring since scoring a fourth-round stoppage of Renan St. Juste in December of 2011, which made him the WBC’s No. 1 contender.
But in May of last year, Dirrell suffered a broken leg during a motorcycle accident.
The accident marked the second career setback for Dirrell. He was diagnosed with non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma shortly after he stopped James Hopkins in December 2006 and didn’t return to the ring until October 2008, when he decisioned Andy Mavros over four rounds. Dirrell said he was motivated to win a title after having survived cancer.
Meanwhile, Orozco (16-0, 12 KOs) will pursue his fifth straight knockout win against Jose Reynoso (16-4-1, 3 KOs), of Riverside, Calif. Orozco is coming off November’s sixth-round knockout of Danny Escobar.
In previously announced bouts, junior lightweights Francisco Vargas (15-0-1, 12 KOs), of Los Angeles, and Jose Aguiniga (33-0, 15 KOs), of Oxnard, will meet in the 10-round main event, and 2012 U.S. Olympians Joseph Diaz Jr. (3-0, 1 KO) and Errol Spence Jr. (4-0, 3 KOs) will return to the ring in separate bouts.
Diaz, a junior featherweight from South El Monte, Calif., will meet Puerto Rico’s Eric Gotay (3-1, 1 KO), while Spence, of Dallas, will face an opponent to be determined in a junior middleweight bout.
Promoted by Golden Boy, the card featuring Dirrell and Orozco will air over the course of three hours on Fox Sports Networks and Fox Deportes and allow event guests access to a new, socially dynamic nightlife experience curated by a live DJ, dancers, strolling mariachis and an interactive gaming pit.
RAYMUNDO BELTRAN DECISIONS ALEJANDO RODRIGUEZ
Lightweight Raymundo Beltran (28-6, 17 KOs) scored a unanimous decision over Alejandro Rodriguez (19-10, 11 KOs) on Saturday night in a Top Rank-promoted show at the Erwin Center in Austin, Texas.
Also on the Beltran-Rodriguez card, junior lightweight Michael Farenas (35-4-4, 27 KOs), of the Philippines, scored a first-round knockout of Gerardo Zayas (19-22-2, 11 KOs).
Farenas bounced back from December’s unanimous-decision loss to unbeaten former featherweight titleholder Yuriorkis Gamboa on the undercard of Juan Manuel Marquez’s sixth-round knockout of Manny Pacquiao in Las Vegas.
In that fight, Farenas rose from knockdowns in the second and seventh rounds to drop Gamboa during a failed bid to earn the WBA’s belt.
Top Rank CEO Bob Arum had informed RingTV.com that, in victory over Rodriguez, Beltran could face lightweight/junior welterweight prospect Terence Crawford (20-0, 15 KOs) on a June 15 card featuring RING and WBO featherweight champion Mikey Garcia.
Crawford is coming off last month’s unanimous decision victory over Breidis Prescott, and could face Beltran on the Garcia undercard at the AT&T Center in San Antonio, accoding to Arum.
The Beltan-Rodriguez card also featured a junior lightweight bout during which Ivan Najera (10-0, 8 KOs) decisioned Daniel Calzada (7-7-2, 1 KO), light heavyweight Trevor McCumby (11-0, 9 KOs) scored a first-round stoppage of Jason Smith (8-3-1, 6 KOs), and lightweight U.S. Olympian Jose Carlos Ramirez (3-0, 2 KOs) won a four-round decision over Antonio Martinez (1-2-2, 1 KO).
ALANTEZ FOX REMAINS UNBEATEN
Junior middleweight Alantez “SlyAza” Fox (11-0-1, 4 KOs), a 21-year-old prospect who stands 6-foot-5, scored a six-round unanimous decision over Keith Collins (4-23, 2 KOs), of St. Joseph, Mo., at the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Tulsa, Oklahoma this past Thursday.
“I felt great…I honestly feel like I’m getting stronger every day. My opponent was lucky we fought when we did,” said Fox.
“Because another week or so and I’d be even more dangerous. I truly feel that way. My training camps aren’t a chore to me, I’m actually excited every day in the gym to see how far I progress day to day.”
Fox, of Forestville, Md., was coming off a unanimous-decision victory over Greg Hackett in March that followed January’s unanimous decision win over Julius Kennedy, with each of his past two triumphs taking place at The Rosecroft Raceway in Fort Washington, Md.
Photo courtesy of Anthony Dirrell
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Photo by Juan Marshall
Lem Satterfield can be reached at email@example.com