16
Jul
2019

Showtime’s Magnificent Seven: A huge four months for boxing fans

SHO 27/10/2016

SHOWTIME Sports will present seven marquee boxing matches pitting top-10 rated champions in the prime of their careers against fellow top-10 rated challengers over four consecutive months beginning in December. 

The schedule, which is the second robust boxing programming announcement from SHOWTIME in 2016, was announced today by Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports. The lineup includes two long-awaited championship matchups, Jesus Cuellar vs. Abner Mares and Jermall Charlo vs. Julian Williams; the can’t-miss featherweight rematch between Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz, and a welterweight unification blockbuster between undefeated champions Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia. All four of these anticipated bouts will be presented in association with Premier Boxing Champions.

Saturday, Dec. 10 – SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®

JESUS CUELLAR v ABNER MARES

Presented in association with Premier Boxing Champions
In a highly anticipated featherweight blockbuster, hard-hitting Jesus Cuellar will make the second defense of his WBA 126-pound title against Abner Mares, a three-division champ who has compiled a staggering resume while collecting belts at 118, 122 and 126 pounds. Cuellar vs. Mares is the latest in a lineup of action-oriented 126-pound showdowns assembled with the goal of unifying one of the sport’s most talent-laden divisions. It will be the fifth featherweight world championship of 2016 on SHOWTIME.

JERMALL CHARLO v JULIAN WILLIAMS

On Dec. 10, there also will be a long-awaited world championship contest between two undefeated 154-pound fighters. Jermall Charlo will make the third defense of his IBF Junior Middleweight World Championship against No. 1 mandatory challenger Julian Williams in a matchup of 26-year-old fighters at the top of their game. Charlo vs. Williams becomes the sixth title or world title eliminator in the 154-pound weight class in 2016 on SHOWTIME, a roster featuring eight of the top-10 fighters in the division.

Saturday, Jan. 14 – SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

BADOU JACK v JAMES DEGALE

Super middleweight world champions Badou Jack and James DeGale are set to unify the 168-pound class. Both champions retained their titles on a doubleheader last April 30 on SHOWTIME. Jack kept his WBC belt in a controversial draw with longtime titlist Lucian Bute that many thought Jack clearly won. Earlier that evening, DeGale successfully defended his IBF crown with a unanimous decision over mandated challenger Rogelio Medina. Jack landed 61 percent of his power punches, while DeGale connected on an astonishing 66 percent of his power shots. Now, Jack and DeGale will face off in a long-awaited unification to determine the No. 1 fighter in the super middleweight division.

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Saturday, Jan. 28 – SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

CARL FRAMPTON v LEO SANTA CRUZ II

Presented in association with Premier Boxing Champions
The most anticipated rematch in boxing will take place when Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz square off in an immediate rematch of a leading 2016 Fight of the Year candidate. In their first encounter July 30 on SHOWTIME, former super bantamweight champ Frampton moved up in weight to challenge fellow unbeaten Santa Cruz, edging the three-division titlist in a firefight. The must-see rematch will be the sixth featherweight world championship on SHOWTIME in less than 12 months.

DEJAN ZLATICANIN v MIKEY GARCIA

The co-feature pits undefeated lightweights Dejan Zlaticanin against resurgent fan favorite Mikey Garcia. Zlaticanin is making the first defense of his WBC 135-pound crown against the former two-division titlist in Garcia. The champion is the No. 1 fighter at 135 pounds, while Garcia is aiming to become a three-division world champion in just his second fight back from a two-and-a-half year layoff.

Saturday, Feb. 11 – SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

ADRIEN BRONER v ADRIAN GRANADOS

Four-division world champion Adrien Broner will face the streaking Adrian Granados in a matchup of top-10 ranked 140-pound fighters. The flashy Broner, who has captured titles at 130, 135, 140 and 147 pounds, has scored two consecutive knockouts in the super lightweight division. The hard-charging, all-action Granados, who pulled a stunning upset of then-undefeated WBC No. 1 ranked super lightweight Amir Imam in a dominating performance last November on SHOWTIME, thrives in the underdog role and has a deceiving record – his four defeats, all via split or majority decision, have come against opponents with a cumulative record of 52-1.

Saturday, March 4 – SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING

DANNY GARCIA v KEITH THURMAN

Presented in association with Premier Boxing Champions
Undefeated welterweight world champions Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia have been on a collision course for more than a year. Thurman has held a version of the WBA Welterweight World Championship since 2013 but announced his arrival in March 2015 with an emphatic win over Robert Guerrero. Thurman has since defended the title twice, including most recently against former world champion Shawn Porter in a potential Fight of the Year thriller in June on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING on CBS. Garcia, after conquering the 140-pound division, captured the WBC Welterweight World Championship with an impressive performance against Guerrero in January. Should Garcia defeat Samuel Vargas on Nov. 12 in a non-title fight, he and Thurman are set to meet in a marquee unification blockbuster between undefeated champions at the pinnacle of their careers. Garcia vs. Thurman will air live in Primetime on CBS or live on SHOWTIME.

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