As part of the undercard leading up to the WBA world light middleweight title fight between Austin “No Doubt” Trout and Miguel Angel Cotto Saturday night at Madison Square Garden, undefeated prospect Jayson “La Maravilla” Velez (19-0, 14 KO) will go to battle against Salvador “Sal II” Sanchez II (30-4-3, 18 KO) for the vacant WBC Silver Featherweight title.
At 24-years-old, Puerto Rico’s Velez has progressively worked his way up the ranks of the featherweight division, picking apart one opponent after another and winning by way of knockout in three of his last fights.
Fighting in the bright lights of the Mecca of boxing is nothing new for Velez, who first stepped into the historic arena in 2009 when he defeated Jesus Bayron via third round TKO.
“Fighting at Madison Square Garden is a great honor,” said Velez. “I know the Puerto Rican fans will be there in full force. This is such a great card and I am thrilled to be part of it. I am honored to be able to train with Miguel Cotto. He is a great legend in Puerto Rico and he is one of my role models.”
Across the ring from Velez will be ring veteran Sanchez, nephew of legendary featherweight Salvador Sanchez. Despite losing the first two fights of his professional career, Sanchez has since gone 30-2-3, and has won his last 11 fights. Inside the ring Sanchez has stayed busy, fighting eight times last year and three in 2012, earning his chance to fight for the title.
Fans can expect an intense shootout between these two big featherweights with heavy hands. This fight will be a defining moment in both boxers’ career as the chance to raise their hand at the end of the night will propel them up the ranks of the featherweight division and move them one step closer to battling for one of the top belts.
The card will get underway at 9 p.m. Eastern on Showtime, with Velez and Sanchez II sharing the co-feature with Danny Jacobs and Chris Fitzpatrick, leading up to the world title fight between belt holder Austin Trout and Miguel Cotto.