Bob Arum announced today that the visa for Diego “La Joya” Chaves has cleared and that he will be traveling to Las Vegas to face Brandon “Bam Bam” Rios, as scheduled, on Saturday, August 2, at The Chelsea in The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas.
There was concern that the Rios vs. Chaves fight would have to be cancelled, as an unrelated system-wide delay with the issuing of American visas put Chaves’s travel plans in jeopardy. But that’s when it’s good to have friends in high places.
Arum called upon buddy Harry Reid, a vocal proponent of boxing and supporter of Manny Pacquiao — not to mention one of the most prominent congressmen in the country. Reid pulled some strings and got Chaves some special expedited attention, and apparently he’s en route to the states as we speak.
Rios (31-2-1, 22 KOs), of Oxnard, Calif., the former world lightweight champion and pound-for-pound all-action fighter, will be making his eagerly-anticipated 2014 debut against one-time interim world champion Chaves (23-1, 19 KOs), of Buenos Aires, in a 10-round welterweight battle.
The co-main event will feature undefeated “The Pride of Las Vegas” Jessie Vargas (24-0, 9 KOs), making his first title defense, against undefeated contender Anton “The Pick Hammer” Novikov (29-0, 10 KOs), of Kopeysk, Russia. Both fights will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark®, beginning at 9:45 p.m. ET/PT.
Rremaining tickets to the Rios vs. Chaves / Vargas vs. Novikov event are available for purchase through Ticketmaster.