A MEMORABLE May saw Canelo Alvarez and Vasiliy Lomachenko remind everyone they are far from finished, Naoya Inoue conduct another symphony of destruction, Lauren Price dazzle in her first world title win, Lawrence Okolie get his mojo back, Jack Catterall gain redemption and Oleksandr Usyk create heavyweight history.

June starts off with a veteran promoter looking to teach his young rival a lesson and finishes with an ageing champion looking to damage the reputation of one of boxing’s talented new stars.

Boxing News takes a look at what’s in store for June and picks out the best on offer from the next 30 days. And remember to download the Boxing News app and receive ringwalk reminders for when all the big fights are about to begin. 

Date: Saturday, June 1

Venue: Kingdom Arena, Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Event: Queensberry vs. Matchroom 5 v 5

June begins with a five-fight card where bragging rights are at stake for Frank Warren and Eddie Hearn. The real winners, however, are the fans, with each fight containing its own intriguing storyline and career ramifications. Deontay Wilder vs. Zhilei Zhang; Filip Hrgovic vs. Daniel Dubois; Hamzah Sheeraz vs. Austin Williams; Raymond Ford vs. Nick Ball; Craig Richards vs. Willy Hutchinson. A list of fights that in the past would have been written down just for fun. Now, it’s a reality.

Is it worth watching? Absolutely. Every fight is worth switching off your phone for.

Date: Saturday, June 15

Venue: Selhurst Park, London

Event: Chris Billam-Smith vs. Richard Riakporhe 2

British boxing’s love affair with football stadiums continues on a busy night for the sport. First up is a rematch between the UK’s two best cruiserweights who fought in a 10-round non-title fight five years ago. That night, Riakporhe got the nod. This time, Billam-Smith walks into enemy territory as WBO champion, looking to remind everyone why he is the main man at 200 lbs in the UK.

Is it worth watching? A British rivalry, a football stadium, a world title… and the cruiserweights rarely fail to deliver. What’s not to love? Look out for another cruiser scrap on the undercard between Isaac Chamberlain and Jack Massey for the vacant European title.

June 15 is a busy night for fight fans with three world title fights across three countries (Left: Davis and Martin, Right: Billam-Smith and Riakporhe)

Date: Saturday, June 15

Venue: Coliseo Juan Aubin Cruz Abreu, Puerto Rico

Event: Subriel Matias vs. Liam Paro

IBF super-lightweight champion Subriel Matias gets a Puerto Rican homecoming in the second defence of his title against Australia’s Paro. The former is building a reputation as one of the most fearsome men in the sport. His challenger is unbeaten in 24 contests and picked up the biggest win of his career in December against Montana Love.

Is it worth watching? If you love big punchers, then yes. All 20 of Matias’s opponents have retired, stopped or been knocked out. Paro is a worthy challenger, though, and capable of winning.

Date: Saturday, June 15

Venue: MGM Grand Garden Arena, Las Vegas

Event: Gervonta Davis vs. Frank Martin

One of the biggest draws in the sport, Gervonta ‘Tank’ Davis, will make his return 14 months after his win over Ryan Garcia. That marked a defining moment in the career of Baltimore’s Davis but outside issues have stopped any momentum. He puts his WBA 135lb title against the Detroit-born Martin, who was once tipped for great things.

Is it worth watching? Davis is box office, and his absence prompts questions that need answering. The co-main event between David Benavidez and Oleksandr Gvozdyk is also worth your time.

Date: Saturday, June 22

Venue: Resorts World Arena, Birmingham

Event: Tyler Denny vs. Felix Cash

Two of Britain’s best middleweights headline a Matchroom card where Ben Shalom will be hoping his man Denny can put one over on Eddie Hearn and his fighter Cash. Should Denny succeed it will not only be a winning first defence of his European title but continue a feel-good story of a fighter who, in 2018 and 2019, lost to Reece Cartwright and Linus Udofia, respectively, when any idea of headlining a big UK show may have seemed unrealistic.

Is it worth watching? Yes. The main event features contrasting characters, and for Cash, this is a must-win. Once tipped for big things, his career has been hit by injury, inactivity, and personal issues. Look out for a potential thriller between Lewis Crocker and Conah Walker on the undercard.

Will Denny (far left) retain his European title? Will Rodriguez (far right) take down Estrada?

Date: Saturday, June 29

Venue: Footprint Centre, Phoenix

Event: Juan Francisco Estrada vs. Jesse ‘Bam’ Rodriguez

Rodriguez is carving out a career for himself that one day could go into the history books. The Texan has already beaten Carlos Cuadras, Srisaket Sor Rungvisai and Sunny Edwards. Now, he bids to reclaim the WBC super flyweight title he vacated against the under-appreciated Estrada. He, Chocolatito Gonzalez, Cuadras and Rungvisai have all been boxing royalty at the smaller weight classes but Rodriguez may eclipse every one of them.

Is it worth watching? It is a must-watch. Rodriguez looks like a generational talent who could become an all-time great. Underestimate Estrada at your peril, though. Look out for the return of Sunny Edwards on the undercard against Adrian Curiel.

Also in June…

Xander Zayas vs. Patrick Teixeira (June 8), Abass Barou vs. Macaulay McGowan (June 14), Lyndon Arthur vs. Liam Cameron (June 21), Quaise Khademi vs. Ryan Farrag (June 21), Rafael Espinoza vs. Sergio Chirino Sanchez (June 21), Pierce O’Leary vs. Darragh Foley (June 28), Lamont Roach vs Feargal McCrory (June 28), Teofimo Lopez vs. Steve Claggett (June 29).


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