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10 Must-See Fights in July

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COMMENTARY | The dog days of summer will soon be hitting fans hard as big fights will be tough to find until a jam-packed fall and promising winter close out a truly solid 2013.

However, despite the absence of big names this month, good fights are available for those who want to dig a bit under the surface.

Here's a look at ten must-see fights in July:

July 5

Eleider Alvarez (12-0, 8 KOs) vs. Allan Green (32-4, 22 KOs)

Alvarez, a highly-regarded 29-year-old light heavyweight prospect from Colombia by way of Quebec, just may be the next big thing at 175 lbs. Green is a talented, but often frustrating veteran pegged with the label of "underachiever." Still, the American is good enough to beat all but the most elite of fighters and, at 33 years of age, he absolutely must win to keep his career afloat. This fight will show whether Alvarez is for real and if Green is finally done as a potential main stage fighter.

Television: ESPN2

July 6

David Price (15-1, 13 KOs) vs. Tony Thompson (37-3, 25 KOs)

The last time these two giants met, mega-hyped UK prospect, Price, was stopped in two rounds by his 41-year-old American opponent. Now, five months later, Price is getting a second chance at passing his first real obstacle as a pro. Another win for Thompson means Price's days as a world class prospect are done.

Television: Wealth TV

July 13

Edwin Rodriguez (23-0, 15 KOs) vs. Denis Grachev (13-1-1, 8 KOs)

The final bout in the Monaco Million Dollar Super Four light heavyweight mini-tournament matches two fringe contenders in a contest that would be stylistically interesting even without the million dollar payday attached to it. Rodriguez and Grachev are solid fighters better known for their grit than their skill, who should make for an entertaining fight on a fairly barren boxing weekend.

Television: TBA

Kell Brook (29-0, 19 KOs) vs. Carson Jones (35-9-3, 25 KOs)

Last July when these two met for the first time, a simple tune-up for UK welterweight prospect, Brook, turned into a life and death struggle with quite a few Fight of the Year moments throughout twelve tough rounds. Brook would come away with the disputed majority decision, but from the blood on his face and body, it was clear that he had been pushed like never before. The veteran American journeyman, Jones, was literally a punch or two shy of scoring the unthinkable upset. Now, he'll get his second chance to steal all of Brooks' career momentum.

Television: No U.S. Television Announced

July 20

Dereck Chisora (16-4, 10 KOs) vs. Malik Scott (35-0-1, 12 KOs)

The UK's Chisora may be crude and disrespectful, but he's usually a fun fighter to watch and just good enough to be a legitimate threat against almost anybody in the heavyweight division. Scott is a smooth-boxing American who lost four prime years due to injury. In terms of ring style, this is a true beauty vs. the beast match-up with the winner moving on to bigger and better things.

Television: No U.S. Television Announced

Frankie Gomez (15-0, 11 KOs) vs. DeMarcus Corley (39-20-1, 23 KOs)

Don't let former world champ, Corley's record fool you. Although forced to play the full-time, on-the-road opponent, "Chop Chop" is still capable of beating anyone on any given night-and has the scalps of several young prospects to prove it. Gomez is a 21-year-old prospect with great potential, but sometimes inconsistent execution. Although the plan may be to give Gomez a coming out party and a stepping stone to the next level, don't discount the distinct possibility of an ugly upset.

Television: FSN/Fox Deportes

July 27

Andre Berto (28-2, 22 KOs) vs. Jesus Soto Karass (27-8-3, 17 KOs)

Just a couple of years ago, only Mayweather and Pacquiao were ranked ahead of former WBC welterweight champ, Berto. Now, though, a PEDs scandal and a 1-2 record in his last three outings have decimated the career progress of the Haitian-American fighter. Berto has a lot to prove in this fight and he has to do it against a tough-as-nails journeyman brawler who will make him fight for every second of every round.

Television: Showtime

Keith Thurman (20-0, 18 KOs) vs. Diego Gabriel Chaves (22-0, 18 KOs)

Is "One Time" Thurman the next big welterweight sensation or just an overhyped one-trick pony? We won't likely get that answer by seeing him thrash the unknown, unproven Argentine, Chaves, but we should get a look at how well the heavy-handed kid from Florida is progressing. Also, the belt is for the interim WBA welterweight title, meaning that the winner will be one step away from challenging new WBA champ, Adrien Broner.

Television: Showtime (Part of the Berto-Soto Karass undercard)

Omar Figueroa (21-0-1, 17 KOs) vs. Nihito Arakawa (24-2-1, 16 KOs)

The 23-year-old Figueroa is a thrill to watch. A human buzzsaw of activity, his relentless offense makes even the most seasoned of opponents look like they're defending themselves against a swarm of killer African bees. Japan's Arakawa is an unknown entity in the U.S., but a respectable regional champ back at home. Even if this turns out to be a mismatch, expect a good time for as long as it lasts.

Television: Showtime (Part of the Berto-Soto Karass undercard)

Juan Francisco Estrada (24-2, 18 KOs) vs. Milan Melindo (29-0, 12 KOs)

In his last bout, Mexico's Estrada scored the major upset over Brian Viloria in China to become the WBO and WBA flyweight champion of the world. He'll be back in China for his first defense, taking on Melindo, perhaps the best Filipino fighter not named Pacquiao or Donaire. Expect a real solid bout between evenly-matched world class opponents.

Television: HBO2


Paul Magno was a licensed official in the state of Michoacan, Mexico and a close follower of the sport for more than thirty years. His work can also be found on Fox Sports and as Editor-in-Chief of The Boxing Tribune. In the past, Paul has done work for Inside Fights, The Queensberry Rules and Eastside Boxing. For breaking news, additional analysis, and assorted crazy commentary, follow him on Facebook, @TheBoxingTribune or on Twitter, @BoxingBTBC.


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