Jonathan Gonzalez is scheduled to defend his 108-pound title against Gerardo Zapata on Friday in Nicaragua, Zapata’s home country.
JONATHAN GONZALEZ (27-3-1, 14 KOs)
VS. GERARDO ZAPATA (14-1-1, 5 KOs)
Date: Friday, Oct. 27
Time: 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT (main event later in show)
Where: Polideportivo Alexis Arguello, Managua, Nicaragua
Division: Junior flyweight (108 pounds)
At stake: Gonzalez’ WBO title
Also on the card: Rene Santiago vs. Kevin Vivas, junior flyweights
Prediction: Gonzalez UD
Background: Gonzalez will be making the third defense of the 108-pound title he won by outpointing Elwin Soto in October 2021. The 32-year-old Puerto Rican subsequently decisioned Mark Anthony Barriga in Florida and Shokichi Iwata in Japan. The latter fight took place in November, almost a year ago. Gonzalez has won five consecutive fights since he was stopped by then 112-pound titleholder Kosei Tanaka in seven rounds in 2019. Zapata is a 29-year-old who will be fighting for a major title for the first time. And he’ll be doing it in his home country. He failed to win his last two fights, a disqualification loss against Rene Santiago last December and a split draw against Azael Villar in August. Gonzalez had been scheduled to face Leyman Benavidez but Benavidez pulled out because of illness a month ago. Zapata, scheduled to fight on the undercard, happily stepped in.