If the Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley, Jr. World Welterweight Championship pay-per-view undercard was a poker hand it would be two pairs of world title fighters, Arce High! Six gladiators will be going mano a mano in two world championship rumbles and a 10-round junior featherweight brawl.
The three-bout pay-per-view undercard will feature undefeated No. 1 welterweight contender MIKE “MJ” JONES battling two-time world champion and current No. 2 contender RANDALL “The Knockout King” BAILEY for the vacant International Boxing Federation (IBF) welterweight title; undefeated World Boxing Association (WBA) super bantamweight champion GUILLERMO “El Chacal” RIGONDEAUX defending his title against world-rated TEON “The Technician” KENNEDY; and five-division world champion and Méxican icon JORGE “Travieso” ARCE, in his first fight in a Las Vegas ring in more than one year, taking on Puerto Rican knockout artist JESUS ROJAS in a 10-round junior featherweight fight.
These six warriors boast a combined record of 171-15-5 (128 KOs) – a winning percentage of 90% and a victory by knockout ratio of 75%.
“The fight card on June 9 will be a treat for all boxing fans,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “These will be great high-action fights as will be our main event with world champions Manny Pacquiao and Timothy Bradley.”
Jones (26-0, 19 KOs), of Philadelphia, Pa., will be making his first world title challenge in a professional career that began with a second-round TKO of Jason Thompson on December 16, 2005 in Philadelphia. The 5’11 Jones, 29, has collected NABA and NABO welterweight titles en route to his ascent to the top of the welterweight ratings, which has included victories over Henry Bruseles, Jesus Soto- Karass (twice), Irving Garcia and Hector Muñoz. Jones, who is co-promoted by Hall of Fame inductee Russell Peltz, returns to the ring after winning a dominating 12-round unanimous decision over Sebastian Lujan in an IBF title elimination bout, at Madison Square Garden on December 3.
Bailey (41-7, 36 KOs), of Miami, Fla., is no stranger to world championship fights having won world titles twice, so far, in his 16-year professional career. He captured his first world title, the WBO junior welterweight championship, in 1999, via a first-round knockout of defending champion Carlos Gonzalez. Bailey successfully defended the title twice, both by knockout, against Hector Lopez and Ray Martinez before losing it via split decision to Ener Julio in 2000 in a very exciting fight. In 2002 Bailey captured the WBA interim super lightweight belt with a third-round knockout of Demetrio Ceballos. Bailey, now trained by two-division world champion John David Jackson, earned his latest title shot with a first-round knockout of Jackson Osei-Bonsu, in an IBF title elimination bout in 2010.
Rigondeaux (9-0, 7 KOs), a two-time Olympic gold medalist and seven-time Cuban National Champion, lives in Miami, Fla. The Cuban southpaw, who made his professional debut in 2009, won the WBA interim super bantamweight title the following year, in only his seventh pro outing, on November 13, 2010, winning a split decision over former world champion Ricardo Cordoba. After successfully defending the title with a first-round knockout of undefeated former European super bantamweight champion Willie Casey on March 11, 2011, he dethroned the previously undefeated WBA super bantamweight champion Rico Ramos in the sixth round of their January 20 title fight. This will be Rigondeaux’s first defense of his world title.
Kennedy (17-1-2, 7 KOs), of Philadelphia, Pa., was an amateur standout, winning gold at the 2004 National Golden Gloves Championships and the U.S. National Under 19 Championships and the 2001 Pan American Cadet Championships. His five-year professional boasts a USBA junior featherweight title reign, which he won in 2009 by knocking out Francisco Rodriguez in the 10th round. He successfully defended that title twice with 12-round unanimous decisions over Jose Beranza and previously undefeated Jorge Diaz in 2010 and 2011, respectively. Kennedy also captured the NABA super bantamweight title in 2010, knocking out Alejandro Becerra in the 10th round. In his last fight, Kennedy was awarded a disputed draw with Chris Martin, on January 13, a fight most ringside observers thought was won by Kennedy.
Arce (60-6-2, 46 KOs), from Los Mochis, México, is one of boxing’s most exciting and popular fighters. The all-action warrior has won world championships or interim world titles in all five divisions between 108 and 122 pounds. A future first-ballot Hall of Fame inductee, Arce enters this fight riding a two-year, nine bout unbeaten streak which includes victories over Angky Angkota for the WBO junior bantamweight title, Wilfredo Vazquez, Jr. for the WBO junior featherweight belt and Angkota again, this time for the WBO bantamweight crown, the title Arce currently holds.
Rojas (18-1-1, 13 KOs), from Caguas, Puerto Rico, enters this fight riding a two-year, six-bout unbeaten streak. Known for his aggressive style, good punching power in both hands, impressive skills and movement and a strong amateur background with close to 200 amateur fights, Rojas, 25, is ready to take the next step in going toe-to-toe with the great Arce.
The Pacquiao vs. Bradley World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight championship collision will take place Saturday, June 9, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. The event will be produced and distributed Live by HBO Pay-Per-View®, beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.
Promoted by Top Rank, in association with MP Promotions, Tecate, AT&T and MGM Grand, remaining tickets to Pacquiao vs. Bradley are priced at $1,200, $900, $600, $400, and $200. Ticket sales at $1,200, $900, $600 and $400 are limited to 10 per person and ticket sales at $200 are limited to two (2) per person. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster (800) 745-3000. Tickets also will be available for purchase atwww.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.