Arnold Barboza Jr. is hungry for a 140-pound world title shot. The Los Angeles native, who has fought all but one of his 19 professional bouts in California, will head to Texas intent on staking his claim as one of the division’s top contenders. Barboza will face Manuel Lopez on Friday, Dec. 14 in a 10-rounder for the NABF junior super lightweight title at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas. Barboza-Lopez will be the co-feature to the previously announced rematch featuring WBO champion Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez and No. 1 contender Jesse “Hollywood” Hart. “I have heard that a world title shot is in my future, but I never take a fight for granted,” Barboza said. “I have trained really hard this fight. Lopez is a tough guy who I know from the amateurs. I am excited to have the opportunity to showcase my skills on a big platform. I never want an easy fight. This is a step-up fight, and I am ready to show the fans what I am made of.” Barboza (19-0, 7 KOs), a native of Los Angeles, is 2-0 in 2018, including a hard-fought 10-round unanimous decision against Mike Reed on March 10 in Carson, Calif. Lopez (14-2-1, 7 KOs), a native of Denver, is entering this fight on a six-bout unbeaten streak dating back to a competitive 2015 decision loss to then-undefeated Kevin Watts. The undercard stream will feature: Southern California's Mikaela Mayer (8-0, 4 KOs), the 2016 Olympian and one of the brightest stars in female boxing, will defend the NABF super featherweight title in an eight-rounder against Calixta Silgado (17-10-3, 12 KOs).
Ramirez-Hart 2 and Barboza-Lopez will stream live at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN+ — the new multi-sport, direct-to-consumer subscription streaming service from The Walt Disney Company’s Direct-to-Consumer & International segment in conjunction with ESPN. The entire undercard will stream live on ESPN+ beginning at 6:30 p.m. ET. Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Zapari Boxing Promotions, tickets to the Ramirez-Hart 2 world championship event are on sale now. Priced at $100, $65, $45, and $30, tickets may be purchased online at Ticketmaster.com, at the American Bank Center Box Office, Monday - Friday from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m. CST, or charge by phone at 1-800-745-3000.