Four-division champion Adrien Broner will battle former welterweight world champion Jessie Vargas in the 12-round main event of a Showtime tripleheader on Saturday, April 21 on a Premier Boxing Champions card from the Barclays Center.
Broner’s original opponent, former champion Omar Figueroa, Jr., suffered a shoulder injury in training that forced him to withdraw from his previously scheduled showdown against Broner.
Broner (33-3, 24 KOs) is one of the most gifted boxers in the sport, having won world titles in four different weight classes by the age of 28. The Cincinnati, Ohio native has won championships at 130, 135, 140 and 147 pounds while facing top competition across the various divisions. In his last fight, Broner lost a unanimous decision to Mikey Garcia on July 29 at Barclays Center after previously defeating Adrian Granados earlier last year.
“I’m feeling really good and I’m excited that this is an even bigger fight than Figueroa,” said Broner via press release. “I had to switch up some sparring partners but everything is going great in camp. We’re fighting at 144 pounds, so he’ll have a slight weight advantage, but it won’t matter.
“I’m going to be in great shape for this fight. Coach Kevin Cunningham is my head coach for this camp, but I did not fire Mike Stafford. I just added to my camp, because I needed the help. I know what I have to do at the end of the day to get back on top where I belong.”
On July 29, 2017, three-division world champion Mikey Garcia kept his undefeated record intact with a dominant 12-round performance against Adrien Broner. Garcia returns to the ring against unbeaten IBF Junior Welterweight World Champion Sergey Lipinets on Saturday March 10 on SHOWTIME.
Vargas (28-2, 10 KOs), a 28-year-old former welterweight champion who was born in Los Angeles and now lives in Las Vegas, is always up for a challenge. His only two losses have come in welterweight title matches against pound-for-pound greats.
He lost a controversial fight to Timothy Bradley, Jr. and dropped a unanimous decision to Manny Pacquiao in a world title defense. Vargas won the welterweight title with a TKO victory over Sadam Ali in 2016 prior to the Pacquiao fight. Vargas is coming off a unanimous decision victory over Aaron Herrera in December as he works toward another world title opportunity.
“This is a fight that should garner a lot of attention from boxing fans and they deserve a fight like this,” said Vargas via press release. “We are two entertaining fighters who come in and give it their all. This is a fight that will have a lot of fireworks. I respect Broner and his skills, but he’s very beatable. The fight was presented to me and I didn’t think twice about taking it.. We as fighters and entertainers have to give the fans what they want. We had a fantastic fight on Saturday in Brooklyn and we’ll have another one in April. I will have my hand raised and let everyone know I’m still a danger to anyone I face.”
Also, undefeated former world champion Jermall Charlo clashes with once-beaten Hugo Centeno, Jr. for the interim 160-pound world title co-feature. Gervonta “Tank” Davis and Jesus Cuellar will also square off for the WBA 130-pound Super World Championship.
Former welterweight world champion Jessie Vargas (28-2, 10 KOs) returned to the ring after a 13-month absence to war with Aaron Herrera (24-8-1, 15 KOs)in a scheduled 10-round bout at Pioneer Event Center in Lancaster, California, on December 15, 2017. This fight was our main featured bout on Fox Sports 1 as part of the Premier Boxing Champions series.
Charlo (26-0, 20 KOs) won his super welterweight title with a dominant knockout of Cornelius Bundrage in 2015 and eventually achieved the distinction of holding a world title in the same weight class (154 pounds) as his twin brother after Jermell won a title in 2016. After successfully defending his 154-pound title three times, Charlo made the move to 160 pounds with the goal of becoming a two-division world champion. In his debut at 160-pounds, the 27-year-old scored a TKO victory over Jorge Sebastian Heiland at Barclays Center on July 29.
Charlo vs. Centeno was originally scheduled for March 3 before being rescheduled due to a rib injury suffered by Centeno.
“I really love fighting in Brooklyn and at Barclays Center,” said Charlo via press release. “The fans in Brooklyn always show me a lot of love. Since my last fight, I’ve had a chance to work on my patience and work on improvements to my game. Before the injury to Centeno, I was having the best camp of my life. I’ve got the same feeling that I had before I won my first world title.
“I want to be a champion at 160 more than I did the first time at 154. Centeno is a tough fighter. He’ll be a hard test but he’s someone who isn’t at my level. I’m not taking anything away from him. But he’s just another fighter that’s in my way.”
Davis (19-0, 18 KOs) is a proof that dynamite can come in a 130-pound package. The 23-year-old Baltimore native fought three times last year and ended all of his fights by stoppage. He won the 130-pound world title with a TKO victory over Jose Pedraza in a star-making performance at Barclays Center on Jan. 14, 2017.
He traveled to London for his first title defense and stopped Liam Walsh by TKO on his home turf to retain the title on May 21, and most recently scored a knockout victory over Francisco Fonseca on Aug. 26 on the Mayweather vs. McGregor PPV undercard. Davis looks to recapture a title in the 130-pound division after failing to make weight prior to the Fonseca fight.
“I’m the most exciting and skilled fighter on television and in 2018 I plan to show it,” said Davis via press release. “On April 21 I’ll be back in the ring, live on Showtime. Jesus Cuellaris arguably my toughest opponent to date. He is rough and tough, but I’m looking forward to the challenge. I’m more than happy to be fighting at Barclays Center where I won my first world title. Brooklyn is very close to Baltimore, so all of my people will be there to witness me become a world champion again.”