Full card set for Vasyl Lomachenko vs Richard Commey clash
Keyshawn Davis, the lightweight star who earned a silver medal at the Tokyo Olympics, has a golden chance to shine on one of boxing’s biggest platforms.
Davis (3-0, 2 KOs), in his first fight since signing a long-term deal with Top Rank, will face Mexican veteran Jose Zaragoza (8-3-1, 2 KOs) in a six-round bout Saturday, Dec. 11 on the undercard of the Vasiliy Lomachenko-Richard Commey lightweight main event.
Middleweight prospect Nico Ali Walsh (2-0, 2 KOs), grandson of “The Greatest,” Muhammad Ali, will fight fellow unbeaten Reyes Sanchez (6-0, 2 KOs) in the four-round televised opener.
Lomachenko-Commey, an eight-round heavyweight showdown between Jared Anderson and Oleksandr Teslenko, Davis-Zaragoza and Ali Walsh-Reyes will air live on ESPN and ESPN Deportes (simulcast on ESPN+) at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT following the 2021 Heisman Trophy Ceremony.
Davis, one of boxing’s most sought-after promotional free agents, signed a long-term contract with Top Rank last month. His notoriety soared following the Tokyo Olympics, a run that included a knockout win over France’s Sofiane Oumiha and a close loss to Cuban legend Andy Cruz in the gold medal match. Zaragoza has won three straight fights and has never been knocked out as a pro.
The full undercard will stream live on ESPN+ at 5:30 p.m. ET/2:30 p.m. PT and is scheduled to include the following bouts:
Xander Zayas (11-0, 8 KOs), the rising Puerto Rican star and frontrunner for 2021 Prospect of the Year, will fight Italy’s Alessio Mastronunzio (9-1, 3 KOs) in a six-round junior middleweight clash. Zayas is 5-0 with three knockouts in 2021, including a fourth-round drubbing of Dan Karpency in October on the Shakur Stevenson-Jamel Herring undercard. Mastronunzio, who is making his American debut, is 4-0 in 2021.
Undefeated welterweight Pablo “Pretty Boy” Valdez (5-0, 4 KOs), the popular New York City ticket-seller from the Lower East Side, is scheduled to fight Julio Cesar Sanchez (11-3, 6 KOs) in a six-rounder. Valdez fought Oct. 30 at Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden, outlasting Alejandro Martinez in a toe-to-toe crowd-pleaser.
Kelvin Davis (2-0, 1 KO), the older brother of Keyshawn Davis, will clash with Bryan Emmanuel Ramirez (1-1-1, 1 KO) in a four-rounder at welterweight. Kelvin Davis also signed with Top Rank last month.
In an eight-round battle of unbeaten junior welterweights, John “El Terrible” Bauza (15-0, 6 KOs) will face Michael “Boy Wonder” Williams Jr. (19-0, 12 KOs). Bauza is coming off June’s second-round blitzing of Christon Edwards, while Williams seeks to tally his sixth victory of 2021.
Staten Island-born featherweight prospect James “Crunch Time” Wilkins (9-2, 6 KOs) hopes to thrill the home city fans in an eight-rounder against Texas native Juan Tapia (10-3, 3 KOs). Wilkins, who was homeless on the streets of Staten Island early in his pro career, makes his Madison Square Garden debut with hopes of graduating to contender status.
Former Irish amateur superstar “Mighty” Joe Ward (5-1, 2 KOs) looks to make it six wins in a row against Britton Norwood (10-3-1, 7 KOs) in a six-round light heavyweight tilt. Ward suffered a freak knee injury in his October 2019 pro debut against Marco Delgado and lost via second-round TKO. He avenged the loss with a one-sided decision over Delgado in March. As an amateur, Ward was a three-time European Championships gold medalist, a three-time World Championships medalist, and a 2016 Olympian.
Promoted by Top Rank, in association with DiBella Entertainment, tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by visiting Ticketmaster.com or MSG.com.
In order to attend the event, all guests age 12 and older are required to provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination (this means having at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine prior to attending). MSG’s comprehensive COVID-19 guidelines, including those regarding children under 12, can be found at https://www.msg.com/madison-square-garden/faqs.