Sebastian Fundora will look to stay busy while waiting for his opportunity at the top of the crowded junior middleweight division.
Fundora will headline against Brian Mendoza at Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, California on April 8.
The telecast is a tripleheader and will also feature The Ring 2021 Prospect of The Year, Brandun Lee, stepping up in class against seasoned veteran Pedro Campa at junior welterweight. The third fight to be shown on Showtime will see Luis Nunez and Christian Olivo battle it out at featherweight.
Fundora (20-0-1, 13 knockouts), The Ring-rated No. 2 junior middleweight, built a portion of his early record on the road in Mexico, Argentina and Uruguay. The 25-year-old southpaw holds physical advantages over his opponents, standing 6-foot-5½ with a gargantuan 80-inch reach (unified heavyweight champion Oleksandr Usyk has a 78-inch reach). However, instead of boxing on the outside, he prefers to stand and fight.
He has impressed stateside and over the past couple of years, beating the likes of Nathaniel Gallimore (KO 6), and Jorge Cota (TKO 4), Sergio Garcia (UD 12), he got off the canvas to outlast Erickson Lubin (RTD 9) in a war of attrition and, most recently, dominated Carlos Ocampo (UD 12).
Mendoza (21-2, 15 KOs) turned professional in 2014. The Albuquerque native won his first 18 fights before tasting defeat against Larry Gomez (SD 8). He returned with by far his win up to that point against Thomas LaManna (UD 10) but dropped a decision to highly touted Jesus Ramos (UD 10).
The 29-year-old has rebounded with two wins, notably knocking out former unified junior middleweight titlist Jeison Rosario (KO 5). That win has helped earn him this opportunity.
Fundora will rightly be considered the favorite and should have too much for Mendoza and position himself to face whoever emerges from this weekend’s Tim Tszyu-Tony Harrison winner versus Jermell Charlo for the undisputed 154-pound title
Lee (27-0, 23 KOs) has impressively gone about his business since turning professional after an impressive amateur career. The 23-year-old has showcased his vaunted power by stopping Samuel Teah (KO 3) and Juan Heraldez (KO 7). However, he has since been forced to go the distance twice by tricky and reluctant Zachary Ochoa (UD 10) and was heavily dropped before recovering to outbox Will Madera (UD 10). He stopped Diego Luque (TKO 4) in January.
Campa (34-2-1, 23 KOs) has been a professional since 2011. The hard-nosed Mexican reeled off 27 wins before coming surprisingly coming unstuck against Carlos Jimenez (TKO 7). The 31-year-old Hermosillo resident won seven of eight, the lone blemish was a draw. His most notable victory came over previously unbeaten Carlos Sanchez (TKO 3). In his last fight, Campa stepped into the big leagues and was picked a part by former undisputed lightweight champion Teofimo Lopez (TKO 7).
Campa represents a step up for Lee and should give the younger man rounds before Lee gets to him in the later stages of the fight.
Nunez (18-0, 13 KOs) was a respected amateur before switching to the professional code in the summer of 2018. Since then, the 23-year-old Dominican Republic stylist won his first 14 fights at home before switching operations to America where he works with the well-respected Sampson Lewkowicz. He has scored wins over previously unbeaten Jayvon Garnett (UD 10), Carlos Arrieta (TKO 10) and Jonathan Fierro (UD 10).
Olivo (20-0-1, 7 KOs) has fought exclusively in Mexico against less than stellar opposition. The 24-year-old who hails from Hermosillo does hold wins over previously unbeaten Adrian Montoya (UD 8) and Christian Vargas (UD 8).
This is a big chance for the two unbeaten fighters, whoever prevails will likely book themselves for a future bigger opportunity down the line.