LAS VEGAS – Jermell Charlo (31-1, 15 KOs) was preparing for a rematch with Tony Harrison in an effort to reclaim the WBC junior middleweight title he lost by controversial decision back in December. However, an ankle injury suffered by Harrison postponed those plans. In his place is Jorge Cota (28-3, 25 KOs), who will look to pull off a massive upset to put himself in position for a title shot in the near future.
It all takes place at the Mandalay Bay Events Center as fight fans will get to see Charlo in action.
On paper, this is a huge mismatch as Charlo has distinct advantages in quality of competition and just about every fighting attribute. However, as we recently saw with Andy Ruiz Jr.’s stunning upset of Anthony Joshua, fights don’t always play out as you expect them to. And with Cota stepping in on short notice, it puts Charlo in the unenviable position of having little time to prepare for an opponent who has nothing to lose and everything to gain.
“I’m ready to fight,” Charlo said earlier in the week. “I’ve been ready to fight since they robbed me of my title. I want my belt back and I want every title in this division. This is my moment, and Cota is in my way.”
The two share a common opponent in Erickson Lubin. Cota suffered the only knockout loss of his career against Lubin back in 2017. Lubin faced Charlo seven months later and was knocked out in devastating fashion. For Cota, this means very little as he looks to disrupt Charlo’s plans of regaining the world title.
“Andy Ruiz had a great victory and it motivated me a lot heading into this fight,” Cota said. “Something similar can happen Sunday with me against Charlo. Ruiz showed the underdog can win, so I hope that Charlo is prepared for Sunday. “
Also featured will be two-time Olympic gold medalist Guillermo Rigondeaux, who will look to turn back the challenge of Julio Ceja in super bantamweight action
Stay tuned as Sporting News will bring you all the action from Las Vegas.
Charlo vs. Cota live updates
8:42 p.m.: We’re five rounds in and Rigondeaux is determined to fight in close quarters for the duration of this bout. To be completely honest, this is the most sustained action we’ve ever seen in a Rigondeaux fight. Maybe he doesn’t respect Ceja’s power or perhaps his legs aren’t what they once were. Regardless of what the reason is, it’s making for a fun fight that Rigo is handily winning.
8:33 p.m.: Rigondeaux used to make it a habit to put on relatively boring fights and cruise to victory. But with this probably being the last chapter of his career, he’s decided to sit in the pocket and trade leather with Ceja. He’s landed some big shots on Ceja thus far and has kept the crowd entertained through three rounds. Also of note is that Tony Harrison is here tonight despite having to pull out due to an injury three weeks ago. You can fully expect Harrison to heckle Charlo all night long.
8:19 p.m.: Welcome to Sporting News’ coverage of Jermell Charlo vs. Jorge Cota. We’re getting things started with Guillermo Rigondeaux (18-1, 12 KOs) vs. Julio Ceja (32-3, 28 KOs) in a WBC super bantamweight title eliminator. The 38-year-old Rigondeaux is looking to get back on the horse after losing to Vasiliy Lomachenko in 2017. He bounced back with a first-round KO of Giovani Delgado and looks to add Ceja to his hit list.
Charlo vs. Cota Fight Card
|Jermell Charlo vs. Jorge Cota||Jr. Middleweight||…|
|Guillermo Rigondeaux vs. Julio Ceja||Super Bantamweight||…|
|Chris Colbert vs. Albert Mercado||Lightweight||…|
|Jesus Alejandro Ramos vs. Kevin Shacks||Welterweight||…|
|Joey Spencer vs. Akeem Black||Super Welterweights||…|
|Quinton Randall vs. Kewone Hill||Super Welterweights||…|
|Julian Rodarte vs. Miguel Angel Aispuro||Lightweight||…|
|Leduan Barthelemy vs. Jose Cayetano||Lightweight||…|
|Marquis Taylor vs. Lucas Santa Maria||Welterweight||…|