Former IBF lightweight champion Richard Commey 29-3 (26) will get his chance to shine when he takes on Jackson Marinez 19-1 (7) in the main event at ‘The Bubble’ at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada on Saturday night.
The Commey-Marinez clash was set to be the main support bout to the fight between Long Island’s Joe Smith Jr and Maxim Vlasov for the vacant WBO light heavyweight title before the Russian returned a positive test for Covid-19 on Thursday.
“I am devastated with the postponement of my world title fight against Joe Smith Jr,” Vlasov said. “I have been following strict protocols, I have done regular testing with negative results, and I have no symptoms.
“I am well prepared and had an excellent training camp. I look forward to the rescheduling of the fight and the opportunity to display my world-class skills.”
Ghanaian Commey, 33, is looking to get back in the win column following his second-round knockout loss to now undisputed lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez 16-0 (12) at New York’s Madison Square Garden in December 2019.
“It’s been over a year since I fought. I lost my [title] to Teofimo,” Commey said. “It was a little bit hard for me to take it… It’s done, and I learned what I had to learn from it. I learned my lesson. It’s redemption time for Commey because I still got a lot in there, and I want to be a two-time world champion.
“I don’t have that much to prove to myself. I want to be a two-time world champion, so it’s time for me. Once I win this fight, there will be a lot of doors open for me. The lightweight division is packed now. Winning this fight would put me back in the mix.
“I’m coming back off a loss and he’s coming back off a loss. It makes sense. It’s a great fight for me to come back.”
Dominican Marinez, 30, is coming off a hotly disputed 12-round unanimous decision loss to Rolando ‘Rolly’ Romero 13-0 (11) at the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Connecticut last August.
“Regarding the experience of fighting Romero, the whole world saw what happened,” Marinez said. “Right now, I see myself as a king without a crown, and even though I lost in controversial fashion, it opened up bigger opportunities for me. I’m taking full advantage of them.
“I just want to make it clear that we never got offered the rematch [with Romero]. We were looking for it. We were in the media doing interviews looking for it. When they saw that after a couple of months I got this big opportunity against Commey, that’s when they went to social media and were saying that I was ducking him and didn’t want to face him again.
“Right now, I have a great opponent in front of me, a former world champion, and I’m ready to take advantage of this opportunity. I’m excited and proud to face someone like Commey.”
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