Notwithstanding Covid-19 Pandemic US Remains Boxing, Sports Capital
By Teodoro Medina Reynoso
Sat, 15 Aug 2020
Top Rank's boxing bubble at MGM Grand in Las Vegas.
Amidst the criticisms related to the US response on the Coronavirus pandemic, including tagging it as recklessly hubristic, Americans are showing their willingness to try to live with the disease instead of burrowing their heads and hoping that it will either go away or a vaccine will finally be developed to eradicate or at least neutralize it.
This characteristic show of daring and gumption has enabled the rise of the American nation from a former collection of colonial states to the premier political and economic power in the world that it has been since the 19th century.
Such bold enterprising spirit can also be clearly seen in the manner the American organizers have been trying to continue holding sporting events notwithstanding the anti-Covid-19 restrictions and constraints as enforced by federal and state authorities.
Hence we are seeing major league baseball games played in empty cavernous stadia and the NBA resuming regular and post season games within an exclusive and strictly medically secured playing regime called a Bubble.
Such is also evident in the US professional boxing circuit where promoters led by Bob Arum have been organizing and holding fights in its own version of a Bubble behind closed doors without live paying audience in a two phased program with the ultimate goal of bringing back big time live arena boxing.
While it is true that some other countries as the UK, Mexico, Japan, Australia, China, Thailand, South Korea, Germany and Russia as well as Ukraine, Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan have resumed pro boxing, bouts have strictly been limited to local fighters in view of their continuing ban on foreign travelers.
Showing that it remains not only the global leader in but the capital of pro boxing, the US continues to open its doors to foreign fighters from all over as long as they are allowed by their countries to leave and can secure US visa in time for any scheduled bouts in the American ring.
Since June, the US has hosted a number of bouts involving some fighters coming from other countries including a few with the world titles at stake as the Joshua Franco-Andrew Moloney WBA regular bantamweight, Angelo Leo-Tramaine Williams WBO super bantamweight and Jamal James vs Thomas Dulorme interim WBA welterweight championship bouts won respectively by Franco, Leo and James.
Other major bouts thus far held in the US included Mike Plania vs Joshua Greer, Shakur Stevenson vs Felix Carballo, Oscar Valdez vs Jayson Velez, Jose Pedraza vs Mikkel Lespierre won respectively by Plania, Stevenson, Valdez and Pedraza.
Still on tap in the remaining months of 2020 with final or tentatively approved scheduled dates and venues set in either Las Vegas, Nevada or the Mohegan Sun Casino, Uncasville, Connecticut are the following:
David Buenavidez vs Alexis Angulo for the vacant WBC super middleweight title;
Rolando Romero vs Jackson Martinez, interim WBA lightweight title;
Cecilia Braekhus vs. Jessica McCashkill, WBA/WBC/WBO/IBF/IBO welterweight title;
Jose Ramirez vs Viktor Postol, WBC/WBO super lightweight title;
Jamel Herring vs Jonathan Oquendo, WBO super featherweight title;
Jermall Charlo vs Sergey Derevyanchenko, WBA middleweight title;
Jermell Charlo vs Jelson Rosario, WBA/WBC/IBF super welterweight title;
Sergey Lipinets vs Kudratillo Adbuhakhorov, interim IBF welterweight title;
Emmanuel Navarette vs Jessie Magdaleno, vacant WBO featherweight title;
Vasily Lomachenko vs Teofimo Lopez, WBA/IBF/WBO lightweight title;
Gervonta Davis vs. Leo Santacruz, WBA lightweight/ WBA super world super featherweight title;
Errol Spence vs Danny Garcia, WBC/IBF welterweight title;
Chris Colbert vs Jaime Arboleda, interim WBA super featherweight title; and
Nonito Donaire vs Nordine Oubaali, WBC bantamweight title.
Still being worked out are the Canelo Alvarez vs Calum Smith world super middleweight unification, Tyson Fury vs Deontay Wilder world heavyweight rubber match, Anthony and the Naoya Inoue vs Jason Moloney WBA/IBF bantamweight title fight with or without Johnriel Casimero possibly in main support undercard.
Love it or hate it, America deserves thanks and praise for its continuing leadership role in sports and other aspects of human endeavor albeit the ongoing Covid pandemic.
The author Teodoro Medina Reynoso is a veteran boxing radio talk show host living in the Philippines. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and by phone 09215309477.
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