Originally published at POLLOCK'S NEWS UPDATE: De La Hoya vs. Vitor Belfort set, per Triller
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**On Thursday, it was announced that an agreement is in place for Oscar De La Hoya and Vitor Belfort to have a boxing exhibition on Saturday, September 11th for Triller Fight Club. It was first reported by Mike Coppinger of The Athletic that the two sides have agreed to the exhibition and was confirmed by Triller promoter Ryan Kavanaugh. De La Hoya, 48, retired from boxing after his December 2008 loss to Manny Pacquiao and had been preparing for a comeback this year. On the last Triller pay-per-view, De La Hoya appeared on commentary during the broadcast in rough shape and led to concerns given his past problems. Belfort, 44, is a former UFC light heavyweight champion and last fought for the promotion in May 2018. After leaving the UFC, he joined ONE Championship but never ended up fighting for the group.
Ariel Helwani reports that De La Hoya and Belfort have verbally agreed to the boxing exhibition with the provisions that De La Hoya would weigh 175 pounds and Belfort at 190 with ten-ounce gloves and contested over eight 2-minute rounds.
Marc Raimondi of ESPN added that Triller is planning a festival for the weekend of the fight including concerts on Saturday and Sunday overseen by Swizz Beatz and Timbaland. Triller also owns the Verzuz music battle web series.
**Max Holloway has suffered an injury that will remove him from his fight with Yair Rodriguez that was scheduled for July 17th. ESPN Deportes broke the news that Holloway is off the card. Holloway last fought in January with one of the best performances you’re going to witness against Calvin Kattar that aired on ABC. Rodriguez hasn’t fought since October 2019 when he defeated Jeremy Stephens by decision. The July 17th card will feature Miesha Tate coming out of retirement to fight Marion Reneau.
**The PFL will air tonight with fights taking place in the promotion’s welterweight and light heavyweight divisions. The main card airs on ESPN 2 in the U.S. and TSN 2 in Canada featuring former UFC and Bellator fighter Rory MacDonald competing against Gleison Tibau. MacDonald dominated Curtis Millender in his previous fight with a first-round stoppage that led to six points being awarded to MacDonald. In the PFL, a fighter earns three points per win and additional points depending on what round the stoppage occurs up to a maximum of three points for a first-round stoppage.
Here is the line-up for tonight’s card along with each fighter’s point total going into the fight:
MAIN CARD (9 p.m. ET on ESPN 2, TSN 2 in Canada)
*Rory MacDonald (6) vs. Gleison Tibau (0)
*Ray Cooper III (5) vs. Nikolay Aleksakhin (4) – Cooper missed weight at 171.8 pounds
*Emiliano Sordi (3) vs. Dan Spohn (0)
*Cezar Ferreira (6) vs. Chris Camozzi (0)
PRELIMINARY CARD (5:30 p.m. ET on ESPN+)
*Antonio Carlos Junior (6) vs. Vinny Magalhaes (-1)
*Cory Hendricks (0) vs. Marthin Hamlet (5)
*Joao Zeferino (3) vs. Jason Ponet (0)
*Magomed Magomedkerimov (-1) vs. Curtis Millender (0)
*Jordan Young (3) vs. Tom Lawlor (0)
*Aleksei Kunchenko (-1) vs. Sadibou Sy (1)
Due to Ray Cooper III missing weight, this is how the PFL is handling the point situation for his fight tonight, per their release:
Cooper III, tipped the scales at 171.8 pounds, missing the 170 pound limit. As a result, Cooper III will lose a point, bringing his season point total to five, and he cannot earn any points regardless of outcome as he looks to secure a return trip to the PFL post season. Standing in his way is Alesakhin, who weighed in at 169 pounds and is fighting for a spot in the playoffs. Alesakhin earned an automatic three points as a result of Copper III missing weight and can earn bonus points should he win by stoppage.
**Next Thursday’s PFL event features two of the promotion’s biggest stars with Kayla Harrison headlining the June 25th event against Cindy Dandois while former UFC lightweight champion Anthony Pettis will compete against Raush Manfio. Pettis lost his PFL debut with a decision loss to Clay Collard in April. After next week’s event, the PFL doesn’t return until August.
**Joe Rogan was interviewed by Krystal Ball and Saagar Enjeti and shared that he was offered the chance to interview Donald Trump while he was still in office. Rogan said he wasn’t interested as it would have been 20-minutes and conducted at the White House and wasn’t interested in helping either Trump or Joe Biden during the campaign.
**USADA announced on Wednesday that UFC fighter Erik Koch has accepted an 18-month sanction after testing positive for a metabolite of the steroid stanozolol. Koch provided a urine sample on October 3, 2020, which came back positive for the banned substance. Due to his “full and complete cooperation”, Koch is only facing an eighteen-month suspension rather than a two-year sanction. He will be eligible to return in April 2002. Koch is 32-years old and came to the UFC after WEC folded. After back-to-back losses to Clay Guida and Bobby Green, Koch moved to welterweight in his last fight where he beat Kyle Stewart by unanimous decision in July 2019.
**This Saturday night, former UFC middleweight champion Anderson Silva will be boxing Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. on pay-per-view. The event, “Tribute to the Kings” will feature Silva and Chavez Jr. headlining the card from Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, and streaming on FITE TV at 9 p.m. ET for $29.99 U.S. Chavez Jr’s legendary father Julio Cesar Chavez Sr. will participate in an exhibition fight with Hector Camacho Jr. on the same event. Silva has stated he is done competing in MMA but seems to be moving ahead with the notion of being a name from his previous career and dovetailing into boxing. Silva last fought in October 2020 suffering a TKO loss to Uriah Hall and was his third consecutive defeat in the UFC.
**UFC women’s featherweight and bantamweight champion Amanda Nunes has been nominated for two ESPY Awards. Nunes is nominated for Best Athlete in Women’s Sports alongside Naomi Osaka, Breanna Stewart, and Simone Biles. In the Best MMA Fighter category, the nominees are Nunes, Khabib Nurmagomedov, Rose Namajunas, and Francis Ngannou. The award ceremony will air on Saturday, July 10th on ABC at 8 p.m. ET.
**Bellator has added a pair of heavyweight fights to the Bellator 262 card on Friday, July 16th on Showtime. Matt Mitrione (13-8, 1 NC) is scheduled to face Tyrell Fortune (10-1, 1 NC). The fight takes place one day after Mitrione’s 43rd birthday and the former UFC competitor is seeking his first victory since February 2018 after going 0-3 with 1 no contest in his previous four outings. Fortune, 30, has fought his entire pro career with Bellator and is coming off wins against Said Sowma and Jack May.
The Bellator 262 card has also added a heavyweight fight between Linton Vassell (20-8, 1 NC) and Marcelo Golm (8-3). Vassell returned to the heavyweight division in 2018 and is coming off TKO wins against Sergey Kharitonov and Ronny Markes. Golm went 1-3 fighting for the UFC from 2017-2019 and has won two fights since leaving the promotion.
**Brian Campbell of CBS Sports spoke with Randy Couture about tonight’s PFL card, the learning curve for Claressa Shields, and what she demonstrated last week in her MMA debut. Couture shared his own experience balancing MMA when he was still wrestling competitively as Shields has stated her intentions to balance both MMA and boxing. Couture also spoke about the fighter pay problems as it relates to Jon Jones’ ongoing issues with the UFC and his own past battles with the UFC.
**MMA Junkie is reporting that Ovince Saint Preux is going to move up to compete at heavyweight against Tanner Boser at the UFC Fight Night card on June 26th. Boser was left without an opponent when Maxim Grishin was forced to withdraw from the fight due to visa problems. Saint Preux fought at heavyweight back in May 2020 when he dropped a split decision to Ben Rothwell and missed weight in his last fight at light heavyweight when he fought Jamahal Hill and weighed in at 207.5 pounds.
**Middleweight fighter Nick Maximov has signed with the UFC, according to Matt Weibel of First Round Management. Weibel is 6-0 and competed on Dana White’s Contender Series last November where he defeated Oscar Cota by unanimous decision and trains at the Nick Diaz Academy.
**Jake Paul is the latest guest on Brendan Schaub’s Food Shop Diaries discussing the fallout after his win against Ben Askren, the upcoming fight with Tyron Woodley, and his loyalty to his brother:
**Boxing analyst and commentator Corey Erdman spoke with Morgan Campbell of CBC about the continued trend of female boxers making the move to MMA after the latest example with Claressa Sheilds debuting for PFL last week. It’s an interesting comparison given we are seeing the opposite with male MMA fighters that are finding enormous paydays by moonlighting as boxers with Tyron Woodley recently stating he will make more fighting Jake Paul than any MMA fight from his career:
What does Claressa Shields’ debut in MMA say about women’s boxing? 🥊@MorganPCampbell is joined by @meghanmcpeak and guest panelist @corey_erdman to discuss Shields’ debut win and its implications in the sport of boxing
— CBC Sports (@cbcsports) June 16, 2021
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