Saturday night at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada we get a very interesting matchup from the Light Heavyweight division. Long time tough Cuban contender Sullivan Barrera (22-2-0, 14KO) will face Jesse Hart (25-2-0, 21KO) of Philadelphia in a 10 round bout that will serve as the main undercard to Tyson Fury vs Tom Schwarz.
This will be both fighters first time in the ring in 2019. Last year Barrera split the two bouts he was in, being dominated and stopped in the 12th round in an attempt to take the WBA title from the champion Dmitry Bivol in March, that was followed up by cruising to a 10 round unanimous decision against Sean Monaghan in November.
For Jesse Hart, 2018 was a year dedicated to working towards a rematch with WBO Super Middleweight champion Gilberto Ramirez, whom Hart dropped a competitive unanimous decision to in 2017.
After delivering three consecutive wins, all by TKO, Hart got his shot at revenge in December in what was another great fight with Ramirez. Despite Ramirez being slowed by a elbow injury in the eighth round, Hart still fell just short of the win losing a majority decision.
This fight was originally set to pit former WBO Light Heavyweight champion Eleider Alvarez against Hart, but Alvarez suffered an injury in training that forced him to withdraw. In stepped Barrera, who was already in camp preparing to take on Michael Seals on the Oscar Valdez card in Reno.
Hart, who is making his debut at light heavyweight, says that he will be the one to finish Barrera’s career as he views him as a shopworn fighter at this point.
“Thanks for taking the fight, but I’m gonna knock you out. There’s not gonna be a battle or back and forth. Ward put a beating on you, Bivol put you in the coffin – now it’s time for me to close the casket and put the nail in it. You got heart, but no brains.”
Barrera’s only response to Hart was, “That’s a lot of talk for someone who couldn’t beat someone with one arm in his last fight for 10 rounds.”