LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 25: Deontay Wilder (L) and Tyson Fury face off during a news conference at … [+]
February is Black History Month, a leap year, and an important stretch for the sport of boxing as almost every weekend has an intriguing fight. The big one takes place on February 22 when one of the most significant heavyweight fights in decades commands the sportsworld.
WBC Heavyweight Champion Deontay Wilder will defend his title against Tyson Fury in a highly anticipated rematch that should set the pace for the rest of the division.
Here is a look at the entire boxing schedule for the month of February.
Feb. 1 on ESPN+
- Sean McComb vs. Mauro Maximiliano Godoy – junior welterweights
- Gary Cully vs. Joe Fitzpatrick – lightweights
Belfast , United Kingdom – 11 October 2019; Sean McComb celebrates after defeating Emiliano … [+]
Sportsfile via Getty Images
The Belfast, Ireland card features promising and undefeated Irish fighter Sean McComb (6-0, 4 KO) headlining against veteran Mauro Maximiliano Godoy (32-5, 17 KO). Hopes are high for McComb and he’s positioned nicely with ESPN+ to shine if he can continue to win and look impressive.
The 6’0” 27-year-old lightweight has excellent length and range for the division, even though his future may lie at 140 or even 147 pounds.
Feb. 1 on Fox Sports 1/Fox Deportes
- Yordenis Ugas vs. Mike Dallas Jr. – welterweights
- Michel Rivera vs. Fidel Maldonado Jr. – lightweights
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JULY 17: Boxer Yordenis Ugas poses during a news conference at MGM Grand Garden … [+]
Yordenis Ugas (24-4, 11 KO) is one of the more underrated fighters in the world, and someone who can get lost on the crowded PBC welterweight roster. He lost a narrow and disputed decision to Shawn Porter just before the latter pushed Errol Spence Jr. to his limit back in September.
Ugas can compete with any welterweight in the world, and he’ll come in to the fight with Mike Dallas Jr. (23-3-2, 11 KO) with a chip on his shoulder. This fight isn’t a major attraction, though it is the biggest boxing event of Super Bowl weekend, unless you count Thursday’s diverse DAZN card that featured Demetrius Andrade, Tevin Farmer, and the Jake Paul vs. AnEson Gib novelty scrap.
Feb. 6 on DAZN/RingTV.com
- Ricardo Sandoval vs. Raymond Tabugon – junior bantamweights
- Oscar Negrete vs. Alberto Melian – bantamweights
INDIO, CA – JULY 18: Ricardo Sandoval waits for his fight to start against Marco Sustaita at Fantasy … [+]
DAZN’s Thursday Night Fights series was strong last week. Perhaps it can create a foothold on an otherwise unoccupied day for boxing.
This week, the 20-year-old Ricardo Sandoval (17-1, 12 KO) looks to maintain his momentum and KO streak (4 straight) when he takes on veteran Filipino Raymond Tabugon (22-11-1, 11 KO). Sandoval has aspirations to challenge for a world title in the near future. He’ll need to get past Tabugon to stay on that path.
Feb. 8 on DAZN
- Kell Brook vs. Mark DeLuca – junior middleweights
- Kid Galahad vs. Claudio Marrero – IBF featherweight eliminator
- (c)Eva Wahlstrom vs. Terri Harper – for Wahlstrom’s WBC women’s junior lightweight title
LONDON, ENGLAND – JANUARY 08: Kell Brook works out ahead of his fight with Mark DeLuca on February 8 … [+]
The return of former IBF Welterweight Champion Kell Brook (38-2, 26 KO) should draw a strong audience in the UK.
Brook hasn’t fought since December 2018 when he scored a unanimous-decision victory over Michael Zerafa. Mark DeLuca (24-1, 13 KO) will be opposing Brook. The 31-year-old is on a three-fight win streak with his only loss coming at the hands of Walter Wright back in June 2018 via split decision.
Feb. 8 on Showtime
- (c) Gary Russell Jr. vs. Tugstsogt Nyambayar – for Russell’s WBC featherweight title
- Guillermo Rigondeaux vs. Liborio Solis – for vacant WBA “regular” bantamweight title
- Jaime Arboleda vs. Jayson Velez – WBA junior lightweight eliminator
OXON HILL, MD – MAY 19: Gary Russell Jr. looks on before the WBC featherweight title bout at MGM … [+]
The extremely talented, but semi-active Gary Russell Jr. (30-1, 18 KO) will make his annual title defense against undefeated Mongolian Tugstsogt Nyambayar (11-0, 9 KO) in the main event of a pretty strong Showtime card.
Russell has arguably the fastest hands in boxing, and he’s an outstanding talent. However, he has fought once a year since 2015. His only loss came in a split decision to Vasyl Lomachenko.
Nyambayar is mostly unknown to American fight fans, but he has demonstrated impressive power against lower-level opponents. Needless to say, Russell is a significant step up for him.
Also on the card, Guillermo Rigondeaux will try to win a secondary world title against Liborio Solis. Jaime Arboleda and Jayson Velez attempt to take a step toward a title shot in the junior lightweight division, and lastly, Russell’s younger brothers, Gary Antuane, and Gary Antonio will also be in action.
Feb. 8 on Payne Boxing Facebook and YouTube)
- Evan Holyfield vs. Travis Nero – junior middleweights
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – NOVEMBER 02: Evan Holyfield smiles after his first-round TKO over Nick Winstead … [+]
Evan Holyfield, the son of the great Evander Holyfield continues the beginnings of his boxing journey.
Feb. 14 on DAZN
- Ryan Garcia vs. Francisco Fonseca – lightweights
- Jorge Linares vs. Carlos Morales – lightweights
- Alexis Rocha vs. Brad Solomon – welterweights
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – NOVEMBER 02: Ryan Garcia makes his ring entrance for a lightweight fight … [+]
Undefeated prospect Ryan Garcia (19-0, 16 KO) wants to face Gervonta Davis in the near future, and he’ll have a great opportunity to get the popular WBA champion’s attention on Feb. 14 when he headlines a DAZN card against Francisco Fonseca (25-2-2, 19 KO).
Garcia should be tested as Fonseca is a legitimate fighter whose two losses came against Davis and Tevin Farmer. If Garcia can win impressively, he’ll make a statement that might lead to what would likely be a PPV fight against Davis.
Former world champion Jorge Linares might be in the mix for a fight with Garcia too. He’s on the card and looking to regain the form he seems to have lost when was defeated by Lomachenko in May 2018. The 34-year-old Linares takes on Carlos Morales in an important fight for the Venezuelan.
Feb. 14 on Showtime
- Thomas Mattice vs. Isaac Cruz Gonzalez – lightweights
Promising young lightweight Thomas Mattice (15-1-1, 11 KO) tries to continue his momentum, but he’ll be facing an opponent in Isaac Cruz Gonzalez (18-1-1, 14 KO) who is ranked No. 7 by the IBF.
A win for Mattice would almost certainly make him a Top-10 fighter and pull him much closer to a title shot.
Feb. 15 on Fox/Fox Deportes
- (c) Caleb Plant vs. Vincent Feigenbutz – for Plant’s IBF super middleweight title
LAS VEGAS, NEVADA – JULY 20: Caleb Plant prepares for his IBF super middleweight title fight … [+]
The IBF’s reigning 168-pound champ Caleb Plant (16-0, 11 KO) is badly in need of an opponent with a name. He won’t get that with Vincent Feigenbutz (31-2, 28 KO), but Plant must be sure not to take his opponent too lightly.
Feigenbutz has shown off some impressive power, and the 24-year-old German will be amped to make a statement while trying to capture his first world title. This might wind up being a better fight than it looks on paper.
Feb. 21 on ESPN+
- Golden Contract junior welterweight semifinals
- Golden Contract featherweight semifinals
ESPN+ has the semifinal fights for the Golden Contract series.
Feb. 22 on ESPN-Fox PPV
- (c) Deontay Wilder vs. Tyson Fury II – for Wilder’s WBC and Fury’s lineal heavyweight title
- Charles Martin vs. Gerald Washington – IBF heavyweight eliminator
- (c) Emanuel Navarrete vs. Jeo Tupas Santisima – for Navarrete’s WBO junior featherweight title
- Sebastian Fundora vs. Daniel Lewis – junior middleweights
- Amir Imam vs. Javier Molina – welterweights
LOS ANGELES, CA – JANUARY 13: Deontay Wilder (L) and Tyson Fury get together during a news … [+]
The card is stacked, as a PPV show should be, and the main event is one of those fights that will take over the sportsworld for an entire weekend. In their first fight, Wilder escaped with a draw after he scored two knockdowns.
However, he was outboxed through most of the bout, and probably deserved to lose his title.
Both men have handled the opposition placed in front of them since their first meeting–though Fury had to dig deep to stave off an upset attempt from Otto Wallin in his last fight.
Still, both men come in primed and ready for round two, and to make a boatload of cash in the process.
Feb. 22 on ESPN+
- (c) Brad Foster vs. Lucien Reid II – for Foster’s British and Commonwealth junior featherweight titles
STEVENAGE, ENGLAND – MAY 18: Brad Foster celebrates knocking out Ashley Lane during the THE BRITISH … [+]
Brad Foster will meet Lucien Reid in a rematch after their first meeting ended in a majority draw. The 22-year-old Foster is the current British Champion and undefeated, but Reid will be looking to push past him in this fight.
Feb. 28 on Showtime
- Malik Hawkins vs. Keith Hunter – junior welterweights
BALTIMORE, MD – JULY 27: Malik Hawkins gets his hand raised by referee Brent Bovell after beating … [+]
Two undefeated and promising American 140-pounders will clash on a Friday night card on Showtime.
Malik Hawkins (18-0, 11 KO) has faced a little better competition in his career, but Hunter (11-0, 7 KO) will still present a challenge because he has the length to match his opponent.
We’ll find out if the skills are comparable on Feb. 28.
Feb. 28 on DAZN
- Daniele Scardina vs. Andrew Francillette – super middleweights
MILAN, ITALY – JUNE 27: Italian boxer Daniele Scardina (aka King Toretto) takes part in a ceremonial … [+]
Italy’s Daniele Scardina (18-0, 14 KO) has some star potential. He’s been chosen to main event in his home country, and he’ll be facing France’s Andrew Francillette (21-2-1, 5 KO).
This could be a showcase bout for Scardina against an opponent with little power, but he must be careful not to get complacent.
Scardina might be a future opponent for Plant if both keep winning.
Feb. 29 on DAZN
- Mikey Garcia vs. Jessie Vargas – welterweights
- (c) Kal Yafai vs. Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez – for Yafai’s WBA junior bantamweight title
- (c) Julio Cesar Martinez vs. Jay Harris – for Martinez’s WBC flyweight title
- Joseph Parker vs. TBA – heavyweights
LOS ANGELES, CA – JULY 28: Mikey Garcia enters the ring for his WBC & IBF World Lightweight Title … [+]
While the main event of this month-ending DAZN card isn’t anything I’m thrilled to see, in totality, the event looks great on paper.
Heavyweight Joseph Parker will likely get a stay-busy fight here. Julio Cesar Martinez is an excellent fighter set for a defense of his flyweight strap, and perhaps most intriguing is the Kal Yafai vs. Roman Gonzalez bout for the former’s WBA title.
The main event features a legit star in Mikey Garcia (39-1, 30 KO), only I’m not sure how many people want to see him stay at welterweight, and even fewer want to watch him do it against Jessie Vargas (29-2-2, 11 KO).
Still, I love the show on a whole, and the fights DAZN is delivering in the first two months of the year.