Two-weight World champions Jessie Vargas and Humberto Soto collide on Friday night at The Forum, Inglewood, and Vargas believes their clash will steal the show live on DAZN in the US and Sky Sports in the UK.
Vargas (28-2-2 10 KOs) is targeting World title glory at 154 pounds having ruled the World at Super-Lightweight and Welterweight, and the first step to landed a belt and becoming a three-weight champ starts against Mexican veteran Soto on Friday night.
Soto (69-9-2 37 KOs) enters the bout on the back of a spirited win over Brandon Rios in Tijuana, Mexico in February, claiming an incredible 69th victory in 81 pro fights against ‘Bam Bam’. The 38 year old can take a giant step to a World title shot with a 70th career victory against Vargas, and the Las Vegas man expects their styles to gel to create a classic.
“Humberto is one of those tough Mexican fighters that never stops coming forward,” said Vargas. “He fights to the end a lot like me, so we’ll put on a great fight on a brilliant card – it could be the fight of the night. His fight with Brandon was a good fight, one Humberto had control of and was able to get the win. He called me out straight after the win and I was happy to accept the fight.
“He’s a two-division World champion, he knows how to box and how to brawl. It’s about picking the right moments against a fighter like that. Knowing his tricks and what will work against a fighter of his caliber and with his experience, I know I need to be switched on for every second of the fight and that’s what we’re training hard for.
“He has speed in his favor as a fighter moving up but so am I, we’ve been working on speed too. I feel I’m the more powerful fighter and stronger fighter physically, I also think that I am faster than him – he is fast but I think that I am more explosive and sharper.
“I’m very intelligent in the ring and very versatile, it’s about me making sure I follow and execute the game plan and stay on my toes, as you cannot give Humberto any chances as he will take advantage.”
Vargas and Soto clash on a blockbuster night of action topped by two mouth-watering World title tussles as Srisaket Sor Rungvisai (47-4-1 41 KOs) puts his WBC and Ring Magazine Super-Flyweight titles on the line in a rematch with Juan Francisco Estrada (38-3 26 KOs) and WBA Super-Bantamweight champion Daniel Roman (26-2-1 10 KOs) and IBF king TJ Doheny (21-0 15 KOs) meet in a unification bout.
Unbeaten Anthony Sims Jr (18-0 17 KOs) targets Super-Middleweight belts this year and faces Vaughn Alexander (14-2 9 KOs) over ten rounds, hotly-tipped Uzbek standout Shakhram Giyasov (7-0 6 KOs) meets Baltimore’s Emanuel Taylor (20-5 14 KOs) in a ten-rounder and his fellow countryman Murodjon Akmadaliev (5-0 4 KOs) faces Mexican Carlos Carlson (23-5 14 KOs).
Two of Matchroom Boxing’s brightest talents showcase their skills as 18 year old Diego Pacheco (2-0 1 KO) fights on home soil against Guillermo Maldonado (1-0) and Austin ‘Ammo’ Williams makes his highly anticipated pro debut against Joe Guevara (3-4-1 2 KOs).
Two of Golden Boy Promotions stars feature on the card in important battles as Argentinian Olympian Alberto Melian (4-0 3 KOs) fights for the second time in 2019 and second time in the States against Isaac Zarate (16-4-3 2 KOs) and former World title challenger Ronnie Rios (29-3 13 KOs) looks to return to winning ways against Daniel Olea (13-7-2 5 KOs).