The battle for lightweight supremacy will take place on Saturday night on Showtime when WBA lightweight champion Brandon Rios (27-0-1) takes on Urbano Antillon (28-2) at the Home Depot Center in Carson CA.
Saturday could represent the last shot for Antillon, who dropped a unanimous decision to Humberto Soto in his previous fight, to get one of the major belts or at least it could take him a while to get another title fight.
Antillon explained as much to reporters during the final press conference. “This is a pivotal fight for me, one of the biggest of my career,” said Antillon. “This is the goal I’ve always had for myself, to be fighting the best there is.”
Antillon, whose first loss came at the hands of Miguel Acosta in July 2009, promised to put forth a maximum effort. “The moment is almost here and it’s a day I’ve been waiting for for awhile. We are both tough fighters and we want to leave it all out in the ring and that’s what we’re going to do.
Rios, on the other hand, is looking to enhance his profile as one of boxing’s top pound-for-pound fighters. The 25-year-old native of Lubbock, Texas has an impressive list of victories, including wins over Miguel Acosta and a then-undefeated Anthony Peterson.
“I am 100 percent and they say they are a 100 percent, so that equals a big force that’s going to be in the ring,” said Rios.
Most agree Saturday is likely to be Rios’ toughest fight to date.
“It’s not just SHOWTIME now, it is war time. There will be no boxing on Saturday night,” said Rios. “We are both brawlers who will try to beat the crap out of each other. Our skills are pretty much the same, no skill … just your typical street fight.”
The main undercard also features an exciting matchup as former IBF welterweight champ Kermit Cintron (32-3-1) will take on Carlos Molina (18-4-2).
Showtime will also broadcast highlights of IBF super middleweight champion Lucian Bute’s bout against Jean-Paul Mendy (29-0-1). It will be the eighth title defense for Bute (28-0).