Cuban boxers are revered for their technique and toughness, but surprisingly, there has never been a Cuban heavyweight champion. Fidel Castro isnt keen on allowing his boxers to compete professionally; Hed rather keep them fighting as amateurs well into their 30s to stockpile Olympic medals. But just as one day Fidel will be KOd for good, so too will a Cuban boxer have his shot at one of the most coveted titles in sport. That day could come very soon for Odlanier Solis. The Olympic gold medal-winning heavyweight, who defected from the communist nation in 2006, is primed to get a shot at current champ Vitali Klitschko. All that stands in his way is a bout with number-one-ranked heavyweight contender Ray Austin at American Airlines Arena on Friday. Austin is a journeyman of sorts, but as boxing enthusiasts know, every fighter has his day (see: Buster Douglas).
Solis and Austin will battle it out in in the main event of Don Kings World Championship Boxing as part of a fight card that includes another Cuban defector, Angelo Santana; International Boxing Federation light-heavyweight champ Tavoris Cloud; Colombian Fulgencio Zuniga; and Nicaraguan great Ricardo Mayorga. King, never one to shy away from a good storyline, has titled the fight night A Tribute to Freedom. Ah, King, only in America.
Fri., Dec. 17, 6 p.m., 2010
Get the Events Newsletter
What's happening in town? From underground club nights to the biggest outdoor festivals, our top picks for the week's best events will always keep you in on the action.