Carlos Molina hopes he can keep the IBF junior middleweight title longer than the man he took it from.
Molina won a 12-round split decision Sept. 14 over Las Vegan Ishe Smith in Smith’s first title defense.
On Saturday, Molina (22-5-2, six knockouts) will defend the belt against Jermall Charlo (17-0, 13 KOs) as part of the Showtime Pay Per View undercard of the Saul “Canelo” Alvarez-Alfredo Angulo main event at the MGM Grand Garden. Molina-Charlo is one of three world title fights on the undercard.
“I don’t usually vacation,” Molina said of the long layoff between fights. “I don’t need time off. But I train for every fight like it’s a championship fight, so this is no different.”
Some of Molina’s opponents have said his style is awkward, but he said it’s smart, sneaky and aggressive.
“They say it’s awkward because I feel like they can’t figure it out,” he said. “So if you can’t figure it out, they just call it awkward. But I’m always adjusting and thinking no matter what.”
Charlo isn’t worried about Molina’s style.
“He knows how to win; he’s the world champion,” Charlo said. “But I’m not necessarily worried about his style or what he’s going to do. It’s all my God-given attributes that will display the victory for me.”
The PPV portion of the card begins at 6 p.m.
■ BKB LOOKS TO VEGAS — Representatives from DirecTV made a presentation to the Nevada Athletic Commission on Thursday to obtain a promoter’s license and bring BKB, a hybrid to traditional boxing, to Las Vegas.
Originally known as “Bare Knuckle Boxing,” the BKB brand now stands for “Big Knockout Boxing” and is a subsidiary of DirecTV, which has 20 million subscribers. The original programming from the satellite TV company uses a circular rather than a squared ring that it calls “The Pit” and has a 19-foot diameter competition surface surrounded by a ramp at a 15-degree angle. Rounds are two minutes instead of three, and bouts are five or seven rounds.
The company promoted two shows in Manchester, N.H., last year and is looking to branch out to Nevada and beyond.
“We’re concerned about pay-per-view revenues declining,” said Jon Gieselman, DirecTV’s senior vice president for marketing. “Our research shows that people love combat sports, and we believe BKB can help grow boxing.”
The NAC tabled the issuing of a promoter’s license to BKB pending more information on the financial structure of the company. The commission also said it, not BKB, would be in charge of assigning officials and physicians and that BKB would have to do business according to Nevada’s rules and regulations.
BKB also agreed to have its fighters use traditional 8- or 10-ounce boxing gloves instead of a glove that has a built-in slit, as was the case in New Hampshire.
BKB expects to be on the NAC’s March 11 agenda and, pending approval, hopes to have its first show in Las Vegas in late May or early June.
■ MONEY TEAM RESULTS — Two of Floyd Mayweather Jr.’s fighters remained undefeated while a third lost his first fight Friday on a SHOBox card at Turning Stone Resort Casino in upstate New York.
In the main event, super middleweight J’Leon Love stopped Vladine Biosse in the 10th and final round to improve to 17-0. Love outpunched his opponent, effectively landing combinations to the body and head, and the fight was stopped at 2:15 of the round.
Badou Jack (16-1-1) lost a first-round technical knockout to Derek Edwards. Edwards sent Jack to the canvas twice in the first minute of their 10-round super middleweight bout.
Junior middleweight Chris Pearson (12-0) won an eight-round split decision over Lanardo Tyner.
Contact reporter Steve Carp at email@example.com or 702-387-2913. Follow him on Twitter: @stevecarprj.