It appears as if Timothy Bradley will return to the ring in Las Vegas this year.
Top Rank has asked the Nevada Athletic Commission for the date of Dec. 13 to present a boxing card at The Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas, where the former welterweight champion is expected to be featured in the main event against Diego Chaves (23-2, 19 knockouts) on an HBO-televised card.
The deal is not finalized. Top Rank had a successful show at the Strip hotel’s The Chelsea venue Aug. 2, when Brandon Rios won a controversial fight by disqualification over Chaves, who threw an elbow that connected with Rios’ head.
“(Bradley-Chaves) is in the works,” Top Rank vice president Carl Moretti said. “We think the Cosmo is a first-class venue that plays well for boxing.”
Bradley (31-1, 12 KOs) last fought April 12, when he lost a 12-round unanimous decision and his World Boxing Organization title to Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand Garden.
The Cosmopolitan date is expected to be approved at Tuesday’s NAC meeting.
■ GARCIA LEAVES — Rafael Garcia, the longtime cornerman for Floyd Mayweather Jr., has left the world champion’s team and intends to retire.
Garcia, 85, had been wrapping Mayweather’s hands since 2001 but was not used in that capacity for his Sept. 13 rematch against Marcos Maidana. He told BoxingScene.com it’s time to do other things.
“It has been a pleasure to be with him,” Garcia told the website. “But I’m going. I want to enjoy life.”
Mayweather has not commented on his team’s status since his interview with FightHype.com was made public last week. Leonard Ellerbe, the CEO of Mayweather Promotions who appears to be out in his position, has not returned calls or texts to clarify his situation.
■ MAYWEATHER NUMBERS — The Mayweather-Maidana rematch generated a live gate of $14,899,150 based on 14,859 tickets sold, according to figures supplied by the NAC. An additional 1,080 tickets were unsold, and there were zero complimentary tickets.
According to Yahoo! Sports, early numbers indicate the Showtime Pay Per View telecast did approximately 925,000 buys, exceeding the 900,000 of the first fight May 3. Showtime does not release figures for its PPV telecasts.
■ JUANMA RETIRES — Former two-division champion Juan Manuel Lopez is only 31. But the Puerto Rican fighter has decided to retire after suffering back-to-back blowout losses.
Lopez (34-5, 31 KOs) held title belts at super bantamweight and featherweight and also won the WBO international super featherweight title when he beat Daniel Ponce De Leon on March 15.
In his final fight Sept. 11 at the Hard Rock Hotel, Lopez was knocked out in the second round by Jesus Cuellar, the World Boxing Association interim featherweight champ.
Contact reporter Steve Carp at email@example.com or 702-387-2913. Follow him on Twitter: @stevecarprj.