Adrien Broner has a new opponent, and Jermall Charlo and Hugo Centeno have a new date. They’re joined by Gervonta Davis, who’s in search of a new championship belt, in a loaded BROOKLYN BOXING tripleheader coming to Barclays Center on April 21.
With Jessie Vargas and Jesus Cuellar on the card as well, the evening is filled with championship resumes.
Broner (33-3, 24 KOs), the former four division champion, was originally slated to fight former 135-pound champion Omar Figueroa, who suffered a shoulder injury in training. Both had last fought in July 2017, with Figueroa defeating Robert Guerrero in his first bout in 18 months, and Broner dropped a unanimous decision to unbeaten Mikey Garcia.
In Vargas, Broner gets a tough new challenge. The former WBA world super lightweight champion and WBO world welterweight champion, Vargas has a 28-2 career record with 10 KOs. His only losses have come in welterweight world championship bouts against Timothy Bradley Jr. and Manny Pacquiao.
“This is a fight that should garner a lot of attention from boxing fans and they deserve a fight like this,” said Vargas. “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.”
Charlo and Centeno were originally scheduled to fight March 3 at Barclays Center as the co-headline bout of the world heavyweight championship main event between Deontay Wilder and Luis Ortiz. A rib injury that Centeno suffered in training delayed this bout for the interim WBC world middleweight title.
Charlo (26-0, 20 KOs) is the former super welterweight champion who moved up to middleweight and debuted with a fourth-round TKO victory over Jorge Sebastian Heiland at Barclays Center last summer. Centeno (26-1, 14 KOs) made a statement last August and elevated himself in the championship contender conversation with a knockout of previously unbeaten contender Immanuwel Aleem.
“I really love fighting in Brooklyn and at Barclays Center,” said Charlo. “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) was boxing’s youngest world champion when he blitzed Jose Pedraza for the IBF world super featherweight title at Barclays Center in January 2017. He followed up with stoppages of Liam Walsh and Francisco Fonseca over the next seven months, but was stripped of his title for failing to make weight against Fonseca.
Former champ Cuellar held a 126-pound featherweight title for more than three years until losing a unanimous decision to Abner Mares in December 2016. In his first fight since then, Cuellar (28-2, 21 KOs) moves up to 130 pounds to face Davis for the vacant WBA super world super featherweight belt.
“The time I’ve had off since the Mares fight has refreshed me for this new opportunity,” said Cuellar. “It took a lot out of my body to make 126 pounds for all of those years. Now I feel fresher and hungrier than ever before. I’ve been offered fights against lesser opponents in the last year but I’ve preferred to wait a little longer so that I can get a chance to fight the best. Gervonta Davis is one of the best in the world, so he’s the one I want to face and beat. Davis has never faced a fighter like me and he will see me at my very best on April 21.”