Artur Beterbiev will make his long-anticipated return this week in the first big boxing event of the year. While the main event will attract most of the viewers, we have a solid undercard that deserves our attention. Here is the entire Beterbiev vs Smith fight card.
Beterbiev vs Smith Fight Card: Everything You Need to Know
Light-Heavyweight: Artur Beterbiev vs Callum Smith (for WBC, WBO, and IBF World Championships)
This match was originally supposed to happen last year. After Beterbiev destroyed Anthony Yarde in January 2023, promoters planned the match against Callum Smith for late July or early August. Unfortunately, the Russian suffered an unexpected infection in the jaw and had to pull out of the fight. He has not fought in almost a year.
Callum Smith once held the WBA Super-Middleweight title but lost it to Canelo Alvarez via unanimous decision in late 2020. That was when he decided to move up in weight and fight at 175. He is on a 2-win streak ahead of this bout but this also means that he fought only twice since December 2020.
He will face one of the most feared boxers in the world. Artur Beterbiev has had 19 professional matches in his career and he won all of them with knockout. He hardly ever gave a chance to his opponents. The most notable “problems” throughout his career were against Yarde, who definitely made him sweat in the first half of their match, and against Callum Johnson, who managed to knock him down once. Other than that, Beterbiev has been almost infallible.
Callum Smith has not yet proven himself at light-heavyweight but he suffered a single defeat in his 30-fight career and it came to Canelo Alvarez. He has 21 knockouts and 8 decision wins.
In recent interviews, both fighters shared their pre-match opinions. Beterbiev gave praise to his opponent and said that he was a dangerous man. His coach added that Beterbiev has become more technical than before. As for Smith, he said that he has to be wise during the match and only take calculated risks.
With this said, we will see one more belt at stake on the Beterbiev vs Smith fight card.
Bantamweight: Jason Moloney vs Saul Sanchez (for Moloney's WBO Bantamweight title)
Jason Moloney is an extremely experienced fighter with a career that began in 2014. He suffered his only two defeats fighting for the IBF bantamweight title in 2018 and 2020. He lost to Emmanuel Rodriguez and Naoya Inoue. Since then, he has had a five-win streak and recently won the vacant WBO bantamweight belt against Vincent Astrolabio.
His opponent, Saul Sanchez, turned pro in 2016 and has a record of 20-2. Unlike his opponent, he has not fought many formidable opponents and this will be the biggest night of his career.
Beterbiev vs Smith Undercard: Seven More Bouts to Watch on Saturday
Super-Middleweight: Christian Mbilli vs Rohan Murdock
Christian Mbili started his professional career in 2017 but already has 25 matches behind him. The important fact is that he is undefeated with 25 wins too. He has 21 knockouts in his career.
Rohan Murdock started his pro career in 2010 and fought 29 times. He has 27 wins and 2 defeats, the last being in 2020. He had 19 knockouts in 27 wins.
Light-Heavyweight: Imam Khataev vs Rodolfo Gomez Jr.
Imam Khataev turned pro less than three years ago in 2021 and has since won 5 out of 5 bouts. His biggest career achievement was a bronze medal during the 2020 Olympics.
His opponent, Rodolfo Gomez Jr., has been a professional since 2008 but his record is far from impressive. He won only 14 of his 24 professional matches. Sadly, he has been used as a gatekeeper for prospects and rising fighters.
Welterweight: Christopher Guerrero vs Sergio Garcia Herrera
Christopher Guerrero may be 22 years old but he already has 9 wins behind him since 2021. In 2023, he fought the impressive four times and won via knockout every single time. His opponent, Sergio Garcia Herrera, started his professional career in 2018 but hasn't had much success. With a record of 7-3, he has been extremely inconsistent.
Light-Heavyweight: Mehmet Unal vs Dragan Lepei
Mehmet Unal is an interesting case as he is a former kickboxer. He turned to boxing around three years ago and is coming into this fight with a record of 7-0.
His opponent, Dragan Lepei, has been a pro for a decade but never reached impressive boxing heights. His record is 22-6-2 and most recently, he lost on points in October.
Super-Featherweight: Leila Beaudoin vs Elizabeth Chavez Espinoza
Leila Beaudoin has been a professional since 2019 and has a record of 10-1. She suffered her first defeat early last year but made a comeback in October.
Her opponent will be Elizabeth Chavez Espinoza, who never really impressed with her performances. A pro since 2017, her record is 4-5-3.
Super-Middleweight: Moreno Fendero vs Victor Hugo Flores
Moreno Fendero is one of the newest pro fighters in the super-middleweight class. He began his professional career in September 2023 and since then has won two matches.
His opponent, Victor Hugo Flores, began his career in 2017 and has been a bit inactive overall. He has only 9 fights in his pro career and a record of 7-2. He actually fought in December and lost.
Super-Middleweight: Wilkens Mathieu vs TBA
We have another new professional here. Wilkens Mathieu began his career in early 2023 and fought the impressive five times in 10 months. He won all five of his matches. His opponent for Saturday has not yet been revealed.
With this said, this is the full Beterbiev vs Smith fight card. We will update you once the last fighter on the undercard gets announced.