Carlos Cuadras vs. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai & Jessie Vargas vs. Liam Smith on Feb.5th in Las Vegas on DAZN

By Boxing News - 12/16/2021 - Comments

By Matt Lieberman: Jessie Vargas vs.  Liam Smith will be battling in the main event, and former super flyweight champions Carlos Cuadras and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai will be meeting in the co-feature on February 5th on DAZN.

This is one of the better cards on DAZN for a long, long time, and it should be an interesting one, particularly the chief support bout between former WBC 115-lb champion Cuadras (39-4-1, 27 KOs) and former WBC super flyweight champion Rungvisai (50-5-1, 43 KOs) should be an entertaining fight.

Cuadras defeated Rungvisai seven years ago by an eight round technical decision in May 2014. It was a fight in which Cuadras suffered a bad cut from a clash of heads with Rungvisai in the eighth round, resulting in the match going to the cards.

The judges wound up giving the victory to the then 26-year-old Cuadras by the scores: 77-74, 78-73, and 77-75.

At the time of the fight being stopped, Rungvisai appeared to be coming on and looked like he might have finished the championship rounds strong if the match hadn’t been stopped suddenly.

It’s pretty clear that his in and out attacking style of Cuadras had given Rungvisai a lot of trouble in the first six rounds, as he wasn’t as adept at dealing with these explosive bursts of punches from the powerful Mexican fighter. But by the seventh, Rungvisai appeared to be figuring out Cuadras.

In the last five years, Cuadras’ once-promising career has primarily fallen apart with him losing to these fighters:

  • Roman ‘Chocolatito’ Gonzalez
  • McWilliams Arroyo
  • Juan Francisco Estrada x 2

Cuadras hasn’t fought in the last 14 months since losing to Juan Estrada by an 11th round knockout in October 2020 in Mexico City. Cuadras knocked Estrada down in the third and seemed to be on the verge of winning by knockout earlier in the fight.

Image: Carlos Cuadras vs. Srisaket Sor Rungvisai & Jessie Vargas vs. Liam Smith on Feb.5th in Las Vegas on DAZN

However, Estrada came back strong in the championship rounds to knock Cuadras down twice in the 11th round to get the knockout.

Former WBC super flyweight champion Rungvisai has won his last three fights since losing his title to Juan Estrada by a 12 round unanimous decision in April 2019.

In their first fight in February 2018, Rungvisai defeated Estrada by a 12 round majority decision.

Rungvisai twice beat Roman Gonzalez in 2017 in fights that showed that he had his number. With that said, Roman was arguably robbed in the first fight in which the judges failed to give him credit for his strong finish in the second half of the contest.

While the headliner between former WBO junior middleweight champion Liam Smith (30-3-1, 17 KOs) and former two-division world champion Jessie Vargas (29-3-2, 11 KOs) is a ho-hum affair between two washed fighters, at least the co-feature bout will be a good one.

Liam ‘Beefy’ Smith is coming off an eighth round knockout win over Anthony Fowler last October. Before that, Smith was beaten by Magomed Kurbanov in a 12 round unanimous decision last May.

Smith has suffered additional losses to Jaime Munguia and Canelo Alvarez in the last five years. Liams’ wins have come against these fighters since 2016:

Mario Alberto Lozano
Sam Eggington
Roberto Garcia
Liam Williams x 2
Marian Cazacu
Predrag Radosevic

Smith beats the fringe-level opposition, but he fails to do the job when he’s asked to fight the upper-tier guys.

Former two-division world champion Jessie Vargas hasn’t fought in close to two years since losing to Mikey Garcia by a 12 round unanimous decision in February 2020.

It’s unclear whether Vargas has any genuine interest in his career at this point. Vargas, 32, has gotten a taste of money in his fights against Manny Pacquiao, Mikey, Adrien Broner, Humberto Soto, and Tim Bradley.

Since Vargas’ fight with Pacquiao in 2016, he doesn’t seem to have the same drive to stay active like he previously did, which would indicate that he’s not hurting for money like regular fighters.

“The fight will now land on either Jan. 29 or Feb. 5. The co-feature is a good one: a rematch between Carlos Cuadras and Srisaket Sor Rungvisai,” said Mike Coppinger.

Jessie Vargas and Liam Smith have agreed to terms for a DAZN main event on Jan. 22 or Jan. 29 in Las Vegas. Vargas is moving up to 154 pounds for the battle between former champions.”