The lightweight fight between two-division beltholder Jorge Linares and Japanese contender Nihito Arakawa will air live on Showtime on March 8 in advance of Golden Boy Promotions's four-bout Showtime Pay Per View card headlined by former RING 154-pound champion Canelo Alvarez and Alfredo Angulo from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Linares-Arakawa will be shown on regular Showtime as a pre-view to the pay per view.
"That will part of pay per view pre-show airing on Showtime, as well as with our distributors in a number of other places which will start at 5:00 p.m. Pacific Time, and 8:00 p.m. Eastern Time," said Stephen Espinoza, executive vice president and general manager, Showtime Sports.
"It's a one-hour pre-show which will include the usual Showtime pre-show analysis features as well as the Linares-Arakawa fight, which we expect to be some amazing action. The pay per view will start an hour later at 6 p.m. Pacific and 9 p.m. Eastern."
In a show being billed as "Toe-To-Toe," Alvarez (42-1-1, 30 knockouts) is coming off the majority decision loss on Showtime Pay Per View to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in September, and Angulo (22-3, 18 KOs) scored two knockdowns during June's exciting 10th-round stoppage loss to Erislandy Lara.
The event will also match WBC 122-pound beltholder Leo Santa Cruz (26-0-1, 15 KOs) against Cristian Mijares (49-7-2, 24 KOs) and lightweight contender Omar Figueroa (22-0-1, 17 KOs) opposite Ricardo “Dinamita” Alvarez, (23-2-3, 14 KOs), Canelo Alvarez's older brother.
The opening fight of the pay per view will be marked by first defense by IBF 154-pound titleholder Carlos Molina (22-5-2, 6 KOs) against prospect Jermall Charlo (17-0, 13 KOs), the 23-year-old twin brother of unbeaten junior middleweight contender Jermell Charlo.
Before all of that action, however, Linares (35-3, 23 KOs) will face Arakawa (24-3-1, 16 KOs), the latter of whom rose from the canvas during a brutal unanimous decision loss to Figueroa in July.