Antonio Margarito to fight on July 16 in Tijuana, Mexico
By Dan Ambrose: Former IBF/WBA/WBO welterweight champion Antonio “El Tornado” Margarito (39-8, 27 KOs) will be in action on July 16 against an opponent still to be determined in his home city of Tijuana, Mexico.
The 38-year-old Margarito’s fight will be televised by Bein Sports Espanol and will be shown in the United States. Margarito last fought in March against Jorge Paez Jr., and he won the fight by a 10 round unanimous decision by the scores of 95-94, 96-93 and 97-93.
Margarito was knocked down in the 6th round of the fight. He was fortunate that he didn’t fight a better opponent than Paez Jr. because he would have been in trouble against anyone good. For Margarito, that was his first fight in five years since his loss to Miguel Cotto in their rematch in 2011.
“I’m told Antonio Margarito will next fight July 16 vs. TBA in his hometown of Tijuana. Bein Sports Espanol will air it in the U.S. #boxing,” said Dan Rafael on his Twitter.
Margarito wants to fight the top names in the sport like Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, Manny Pacquiao, Cotto and Floyd Mayweather Jr. However, for him to have a chance of getting any of those guys to fight him, he’s going to need to start fighting on a frequent basis against better fighters. Even then, it’s highly unlikely that he’ll get any of the big names to fight him. Margarito’s time appears to have past him by as far as getting the bigger fights.
The best thing he can hope for right now is to work his way into title position to fight someone like IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook in the UK. That might give Margarito his best chance of a decent payday in this comeback. He’s too slow and weak to move up to junior middleweight to take on the bigger names in that division.
Likewise, Margarito doesn’t have the size, power or speed to fight middleweights like Gennady Golovkin, Daniel Jacobs or Billy Joe Saunders. Those guys would be too good for Margarito and he’d have major problems against those guys.
Margarito’s promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank wants to see how he does before he puts him in with some of the better fighters. Arum couldn’t have been too thrilled at his performance against Paez Jr. because he looked really slow with his punches and not powerful. Margarito did have Paez in trouble in the 10th round when he hurt him with a flurry of punches that had him in trouble. Still, a good fighter would have blown through Paez without any problems.
Margarito, 5’11”, has good size for a welterweight, and he would be better off if he could target WBC champion Danny Garcia or WBO champion Jessie Vargas. Garcia is with Al Haymon, so that likely means that Margarito won’t be getting a shot against him anytime soon if ever. Arum promotes Vargas and he could match Margarito against him if he wanted to. However, Vargas could be facing IBF champion Kell Brook next and he very likely will beat Vargas badly.