On June 4, live from the StubHub Center in Carson, California, two Mexican warriors in Francisco “El Bandido” Vargas (23-0-1, 17 KOs) and Orlando “Siri” Salido (43-13-3, 30 KOs) will face off in what many boxing experts believe can be a fight of the year candidate.
Salido, a former three-time world champion, will look to hand Vargas his first defeat and become the owner of the WBC Super Featherweight championship. Vargas on the other hand, looks to remain unbeaten and continue to offer crowd-pleasing performance.
In a recent media conference call, Salido discussed what he’s expecting.
“I’m happy to have this opportunity,” said Salido. “I’ve been working real hard. I know it’s going to be a real tough fight. I’m looking forward to give our fans a great fight. I’ll be really looking to get the upset here over Vargas.”
Salido is no stranger to tough opposition. He’s found himself across the ring from fighters such as Juan Manuel Marquez, Yuriokis Gamboa, Mikey Garcia, and most notably Rocky Martinez for two exciting brawls.
Vargas may not have fought the same class of opposition thus far in his career, but ask any boxing fan or enthusiast about him and you’ll only hear positive remarks about the Mexican champion and his all-action style.
Vargas won his Super Featherweight title on the Canelo Alvarez vs. Miguel Cotto undercard in what most people regarded as the fight of the year in 2015 over Takashi Muira.
Many people were a bit surprised in the choosing of Salido as his first title defense, especially after the war that Vargas encountered while winning his title.
“I want to continue to be the best; in order to be the best, you have to fight the best, and I consider him one of the best,” said Vargas during the same media call. “And I know that it definitely could be a candidate for fight of the year.”
One of the bigger topics discussed on the call was the recent news of Vargas’ testing positive for clenbuterol. Despite the positive result of a banned substance, the fight was not postponed.
Since the breaking news of the drug test, Vargas has been tested over three times by VADA and all results have come out negative. Vargas explained the situation in his own words.
“I used to hear these stories; never believed it. Never. But you don’t believe it until it happens to you. I have always been a clean fighter. I’m going to continue to be a clean fighter,” said Vargas.
In regards to facing Vargas, Salido agrees that a war could break out, given their styles.
“I think our styles are made perfect for each other. I think we’re going to go in there from minute one and just start throwing punches,” said Salido.
“There’s not going to be any speculation out there. There’s going to be a lot of entertainment for the fans.”
All in all, despite the continuous talks of drug tests, it was clear both fighters have put the issue behind them and their eyes are set on June 4.
This, my friends is not a fight you want to miss. Make sure to catch this warrior versus warrior bout on HBO Boxing.
Photo by Gene Blevins/Hogan Photos
Peter Nieves is a sports journalist who's been writing for Round By Round Boxing for almost two years. When he's not covering the sweet science, he's busy twirling his mustache and writing a comedy series. You can follow him on Twitter and Instagram @pnieves90