Pinoy boxer Mike Plania to find out what it’s like fighting at spectator-less MGM Grand

ABS-CBN News

Posted at Jun 02 2020 04:03 AM

Mike Plania, of General Santos City, will be the first Filipino boxer to hit the ring in the United States since the pandemic came down earlier this year and sports events were consequently cancelled. Handout

Mike Plania will take on American Joshua Greer Jr. in a 10-round bout in Las Vegas on June 16, part of an initial number of fight cards by Top Rank Inc. to be held without spectators.

The venue is at MGM Grand and the catch weight at 120 pounds. 

Plania, 23, will be the first Filipino boxer to hit the ring in the United States since the pandemic came down earlier this year and sports events were consequently cancelled. 

The General Santos City native carried a 23-1, win-loss record with 12 victories by stoppage.

“I am aware of my underdog status in this fight, but it will serve as my inspiration to come out and win this big,” Plania said of the fight co-organized by Sanman Promotions, MR Promotions, Knucklehead and Top Rank.

Greer, 25, is the No. 1 ranked bantamweight fighter in the World Boxing Organization. He has a record of 22 wins, 12 by knockout, to go with a loss and a draw.

Top Rank has lined up cards to be held at the MGM Grand Conference Center, starting with a June 9 event featuring Shakur Stevenson, unbeaten in 13 fights, taking on Puerto Rican Felix Caraballo in a non-title bout.

Stevenson, the World Boxing Organization featherweight champion, had been scheduled to make the first defense of his belt on March 14 against Miguel Marriaga in New York, but that event was canceled because of the pandemic.

"The goal was to start out with really good, competitive fights, with names that people are familiar with, who have been on ESPN shows," Arum told broadcaster ESPN on Saturday, adding they opted not to start with title bouts to streamline the logistics.

Arum said the health protocols put in place by Nevada officials offered "a sensible way to push ahead.

"You've got to make sure all the procedures are safe and so forth," Arum said. "Hopefully, what we're doing will serve as a template for other promoters to put on shows." -- With a report from Agence France-Presse

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