Top 5 Fights in Boxing for May 2019 – Boxing Base

The May schedule is bustling with fan-friendly fights, kicking off with a must-see Middleweight blockbuster in Las Vegas. A ferocious Pound-for-Pound boxing supreme continues his WBSS journey, a formidable Heavyweight kingpin returns, plus a Cruiserweight sensation hopes to make the grade in a Heavyweight debut. For extensive fixtures, see our Complete 2019 Schedule.

 

Daniel Jacobs will soon collide with Canelo AlvarezCanelo Alvarez vs. Daniel Jacobs (DAZN, Sky Sports Main Event)

May 2, Las Vegas, Nevada

This one pretty much sells itself, with two of the Middleweight scene’s chief attractions set to collide. Canelo Alvarez, having now both drawn and beaten bogeyman Gennady Golovkin, has become a bona fide Mexican icon and international boxing star, and his record-breaking, three-figure DAZN signing proves just how big a deal this guy is.

In the other corner, we’ve got Daniel Jacobs, the longer, rangier guy, with fight-changing pop and great movement. And the fact that the ‘Miracle Man’ fought his way back to the top rung – after beating cancer – will forever be an emotionally stirring comeback story. In the deep end, Jacobs has beaten Peter Quillin, Sergey Derevyanchenko, and almost upset Golovkin.

This is basically for all the marbles at 160 pounds, with Canelo’s WBC, WBA (Super), RING titles and Jacobs’ IBF variety in the pot.

 

Canelo vs. Jacobs: Notable Undercard

  • Bilal Akkawy vs. John Ryder | Super Middleweight
  • Vergil Ortiz Jr vs. Mauricio Herrera | Junior Welterweight
  • Pablo Cesar Cano vs. Michael Perez | Junior Welterweight
  • Jospeh Diaz Jr vs. Freddy Fonseca | Junior Welterweight
  • Sadam Ali vs. Anthony Young | Welterweight

 

Artur Beterbiev vs. Radivoje Kalajdzic (ESPN / Deportes, Boxnation)

May 2, Stockton, California

Artur Beterbiev may have seemed a whole lot more human in his October encounter with Callum Johnson, but the Russian puncher remains a formidable, unbeaten prospect. I say ‘prospect’ because, although he has lifted the IBF title, he’s still fairly unproven on the Light Heavyweight scene, with zero experience in the deep end.

As for Radivoje Kalajdzic, he’ll no doubt enter the ring a big underdog. And that’s to be expected since few folks outside of his native Bosnia and Herzegovina will have heard of him. For what it’s worth, Kalajdzic is in his prime at 27, and his record suggests he can bang a bit. Also, with just a sole blemish to Marcus Browne (SD 12) in 2016, it could be foolish to completely write him off just yet.

 

Beterbiev vs. Kalajdzic: Notable Undercard

  • Jerwin Ancajas vs. Ryuichi Funai | IBF Junior Bantamweight Championship
  • Gabriel Flores Jr vs. Eduardo Pereira | Lightweight

 

Naoya Inoue is a soaring boxing sensationEmmanuel Rodriguez vs. Naoya Inoue (DAZN, Sky Sports Main Event)

May 18, Glasgow, Scotland

This WBSS Bantamweight Semi-Final – despite appearing fiercely competitive on paper – should, one way or another, end with Naoya Inoue’s hand raised. Inoue hasn’t exactly been around long in the pro game, but there’s something about the guy. He’s passed the eye test in just about every way, and man, that chilling first-punch KO of Juan Carlos Payano (in the WBSS first round) still has us all gasping.

However, if you’re picking Rodriguez to nick a close decision, I hear you. Rodriguez is the champ coming into this fight, boxes well, and has plenty of dog in him to let his hands fly in a tearup if need be. The man is hungry, 26-years-young and won’t be surrendering his IBF strap without a fight.

The thing is, though, Inoue is being talked about in the same breath as guys like Vasyl Lomachenko and Terence Crawford – undisputed elites of modern boxing. Rodriguez will no doubt have his hands full, but an upset here would lead to major spoils, no question.

 

Rodriguez vs. Inoue: Notable Undercard

  • Ivan Baranchyk vs. Josh Taylor | IBF Junior Welterweight Championship

 

Deontay Wilder vs. Dominic Breazeale (Showtime)

May 18, Brooklyn, New York

As far as Heavyweight matchups go not featuring Deontay Wilder, Tyson Fury and Anthony Joshua facing each other, Wilder-Breazeale isn’t an awful fight. It’s not that guys like Dominic Breazeale don’t belong in the Top 10 – they do – it’s just that the Heavyweight pond happens to be a tiny one being totally bossed by the aforementioned kingpin trio.

Breazeale is a big guy at 6′ 7″, has talent, can bang, and has bounced back nicely from a 2016 Joshua defeat by outbrawling and knocking out prospect Izuagbe Ugonoh. Against a dynamite puncher like Wilder, you’ve either got to take him out early or box out of your skin for twelve nerve-shredding rounds. Fury almost managed to do the latter in December, so, hey, we know it’s possible at least.

If Breazeale can pull off the upset, he’ll walk away with Wilder’s WBC strap, ending the knockout artist’s 41-fight unbeaten streak.

 

Wilder vs. Breazeale: Notable Undercard

  • Gary Russell Jr vs. Kiko Martinez | WBC Featherweight Championship
  • Juan Hernandez vs. Argenis Mendez | Junior Welterweight

 

Boxing supreme Oleksandr Usyk will debut at HeavyweightOleksandr Usyk vs. Carlos Takam (DAZN, Sky Sports Main Event)

May 25, Oxon Hill, Maryland

This meeting of red-hot Cruiserweight elite versus Heavyweight veteran isn’t expected to be particularly competitive – if at all – but it has its significance within the bigger frame. Oleksandr Usyk, who literally conquered every top player during his Cruiser campaign, seeks to get his feet wet in this Heavy debut versus Carlos Takam.

Of course, the significance of the bout is to assess how Usyk may fair against boxing’s big men. Realistically, we can’t expect Usyk to be immediately lined up with anyone like Anthony Joshua in 2019, but it’s no doubt in Usyk’s mind and certainly that of co-promoters K2 and Matchroom.

And what of Takam, the wily old pro? Well, it has to be said that, while he remains a tough-as-nails upper-level gatekeeper, his chances seem slim. He’s got tons more experience at world level, but, at 6’ 1.5”, he’s always been a ‘small’ big guy by modern boxing standards, even standing 1.5” shorter than Usyk himself.

 

Usyk vs. Takam: Notable Undercard

  • Michael Hunter vs. TBA | Heavyweight
  • Jessica McCaskill vs. Anahi Sanchez | WBC, WBA Women’s Junior Welterweight Championship unification
  • Filip Hrgovic vs. Greg Corbin | Heavyweight

 

Boxing in May: Best of the Rest

Yamaguchi Falcao vs. Chris Pearson (Golden Boy Facebook Watch)

May 2, Las Vegas, Nevada; Middleweight

 

Jordan Gill vs. Enrique Tinoco (DAZN)

May 10, Nottingham, England; Featherweight

 

Jarrett Hurd vs. Julian Williams (Fox / Deportes)

May 11, Fairfax, Virginia; WBC, IBF Junior Middleweight Championship

 

Miguel Berchelt vs. Francisco Vargas II (ESPN / Deportes, Boxnation)

May 11, Tucson, Arizona; WBC Junior Lightweight Championship

  • Emanuel Navarrete vs. Isaac Dogboe II | WBO Junior Featherweight Championship

 

Moruti Mthalane vs. Masayuki Kuroda

May 13, Tokyo, Japan; IBF Flyweight Championship

 

Ryan Burnett vs. Jelbirt Gomera (ESPN+)

May 17, Belfast, Northern Ireland; Junior Featherweight

 

Billy Joe Saunders vs. Shefat Isufi (ESPN+)

May 17, Stevenage, England; vacant WBO ‘Interim’ Super Middleweight Championship

 

Felix Alvarado vs. Reiya Konishi

May 19, Kobe, Japan; IBF Junior Flyweight Championship

 

Masayuki Ito vs. Jamel Herring (ESPN / Deportes)

May 19, Kissimmee, Florida; WBO Junior Lightweight Championship

 

Austin Trout vs. Terrell Gausha (Fox Sports 1 / Deportes)

May 25, Biloxi, Mississippi; Junior Middleweight

 

How do you see May’s boxing fixtures unfolding? Can Jacobs derail the Canelo train to rule supreme at Middleweight? And are there any upsets lurking in the grass for favorites Beterbiev, Inoue, Wilder and Usyk? Spill your thoughts and picks.


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