This week combat sports isn't as robust an offering as last week, when fans saw MMA and boxing jump out of the pan faster than grease on fish.
This week Premier Boxing Champions delivers an obscure but foundation laying welterweight showdown in Bean town.
Danny O’Connor has not so-fond-memories of April 8, 2011, the day he took a 14-0 record into the ring against Gabriel Bracero in Lardo, Texas, only to exit 14-1 after losing a one-sided unanimous decision.
Tomorrow night, after more than four years of waiting, O’Connor will finally get his shot at revenge when he faces Bracero in a 147-pound clash at Lowell Memorial Auditorium in Lowell, Massachusetts, near O’Connor’s hometown of Framingham.
O’Connor (26-2, 10 KOs) will be after his fourth straight stoppage win in a calendar year, having most recently dismantled Chris Gilbert in May. In that contest, the southpaw scored five knockdowns on his way to a fifth-round TKO.
While O’Connor is on a roll, Bracero (23-2, 4 KOs) will be looking to rebound from April’s unanimous-decision loss to unbeaten Felix Diaz Jr. in a PBC card from Brooklyn, New York. A former Olympic gold medalist, Diaz floored Bracero once in both the eighth and ninth rounds en route to snapping Bracero’s five-fight winning streak.
Both O’Connor, 30, and Bracero, 34, have suffered losses to aging former champions in recent years.
Prior to his current three-fight winning streak, O’Connor fell to Vivian Harris by split decision in October 2013; nearly two years earlier, Bracero dropped a unanimous decision to southpaw DeMarcus Corley.
“I’m excited to be fighting at a building with great boxing history such as the Lowell Memorial Auditorium,” said O’Connor at the official press conference. “I won the Golden Gloves there, and I can’t wait to fight there again. I’m also excited to avenge my first loss against Gabriel Bracero. I’m so ready for this!”
“This is a huge fight for me and my career," said Bracero. "I only have one thought in my mind, and that’s victory. Danny is a tough opponent and on a winning streak right now. I'm coming off a disappointing loss in my last fight, and not to make any excuses, but that just wasn’t me. That wasn't the best ‘Tito’ Bracero. The best ‘Tito’ Bracero will be there October 10.
“I beat Danny before and I plan to do so again, in his backyard, even more convincingly.”
The scheduled 10-round bout headlines a Premier Boxing Champions card on NBCSN (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).