“Showtime continues to deliver the deepest fight cards in boxing.”
Showtime’s Stephen Espinoza is a funny man on Twitter, but he really outdid himself in Tuesday’s press release announcing the worst premium cable card in recent memory. The Aug. 9 Showtime/Golden Boy Barclay’s Center tripleheader will feature top junior welterweights Danny Garcia and Lamont Peterson, just not against each other. Garcia, the division’s champion, will fight Rod Salka (19-3, 3 KO). Yes, you read that correctly, he has three KOs (and his name is an anagram of “alas, dork”). Sure, “Lightning Rod” is a great nickname, but that doesn’t qualify you for a fight with a world champion. With his controversial win over Mauricio Herrera and obnoxious social media presence, Garcia is rapidly pissing away the cred he earned by defeating Lucas Matthysse last year.
As for Peterson, generally it’s a bad sign when the first thing a press release says about a fighter is that they’re “unbeaten in three straight fights.” But that’s the best plug they could manage for his opponent, Edgar Santana (29-4, 20 KO), who’s been setting Delaware alight. Yeah.
The best fight on the card is between middleweights Danny Jacobs and Jarrod “Left Jab” Fletcher (yes, you read that correctly as well). Despite being an absolute battler in the nickname stakes, at least Fletcher (18-1, 10 KO) is a fringe contender and might offer a few wrinkles that will challenge Jacobs, who hasn’t fought anyone much good since his knockout loss to Dmitry Pirog in 2010. Even then, it’s probably more of premium cable off-TV undercard type fight.
What more is there to say? This is a really bad card that really doesn’t need to happen. There was absolutely no reason why Garcia and Peterson couldn’t have fought each other in August, they’re both well known, fit, coming off wins and (presumably) getting paid a shitload. Neither needs a tune-up. An actually good bout originally planned for Aug. 9, between welterweights Shawn Porter and Kell Brook, has been moved to a yet to be announced date, with no explanation given. That fight would have at least polished this turd of a card a little bit. Instead we have a card with no redeeming features; Showtime is pissing money away that it could spend on fights that people actually want to see, and that makes me sad.
(Photo: Danny Garcia’s Instagram is one of the few things worse than Showtime’s Aug. 9 card)