Undefeated 140-pound contender Regis Prograis and former world champion Viktor Postol will face off for the vacant WBC Super Lightweight World Championship on Friday, March 9 in the 12-round main event of SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION live on SHOWTIME at 10 p.m. ET/PT from Deadwood Mountain Grand in Deadwood, South Dakota.
Prograis (20-0, 17 KOs), of Houston by way of New Orleans, has scored knockouts in 13 of his last 14 fights and is a rising star in the wide-open 140-pound division. The aggressive-minded southpaw will face the toughest test of his career in Postol, a former WBC Super Lightweight World Champion with only one loss on his record.
In the 12-round co-feature, undefeated 140-pound contenders Ivan Baranchyk (17-0, 10 KOs) and Anthony Yigit (21-0-1, 7 KOs) will square off in a Junior Welterweight World Title Eliminator to become the mandatory challenger for IBF champion Sergey Lipinets. Lipinets will defend his belt the following day, March 10, on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® against undefeated three-division champion Mikey Garcia.
The event is presented by DiBella Entertainment, in association with Elite Boxing, Fight Promotions Inc., Holden Productions and Sauerland Promotions. Tickets, priced at $200, $80 and $60, go on sale Friday, Feb. 9, and can be purchased on Ticketmaster.com or by calling (877) 907-4726.
“I feel I’m one of the best junior welterweights in the world and this is my chance to display my belief in myself,” Prograis said. “I’m very excited to be fighting Viktor Postol – he’s a very experienced fighter that previously held the WBC world title. I want to become a world champion this year, and I know Viktor Postol wants to reclaim his title, but we have to go through each other first. This is a great fight for boxing because you have two hungry fighters. It’s a can’t-miss fight.”
“My goal is to become a world champion again and I know a win over Regis Prograis will bring me one step closer,” Postol said. “I have been training hard for the past couple of months and I’m very excited for the opportunity to face Prograis on March 9.”
“My next fight is very important for my career and I am preparing for it very seriously,” Baranchyk said. “A few months ago, I moved to Miami, Fla., where I am now being trained by Pedro Diaz. I have strict discipline for everything in my training. I’m working on improving my skills, tactics for the fight, my skill set and physical strength. I’m also maintaining a much stricter diet and eating very healthy. I want every fighter to know if I am in the boxing ring you will never have an easy fight with me.”
“My dream is to become a world champion and I need to defeat Baranchyk to continue on my path,” Yigit said. “This will be my first time fighting in the United States but I’m ready to show the boxing fans that I have what it takes to become a world champion. From Stockholm, Sweden to Deadwood, South Dakota, onward my journey continues.”
“Prograis and Baranchyk have appeared a combined nine times on ShoBox: The New Generation and it’s fulfilling to see their development from talented prospects to legitimate contenders,” said Gordon Hall, ShoBox Executive Producer and SVP Production, SHOWTIME Sports. “We view this progression as a validation for the ShoBox series, and we’re thrilled to see their hard work pay off with these potentially career-changing opportunities. These are two tough fights that will determine who is ready to take the next step in this exciting division.”
“We are thrilled that DiBella Entertainment is bringing big time boxing back to South Dakota,” said Susan Kightlinger, General Manager at Deadwood Mountain Grand. “Deadwood is renowned for its rough and tumble past and professional boxing fits that mold perfectly. It’s an amazing card, great fighters and SHOWTIME is the ultimate name in boxing. It’s a perfect fit!”
Prograis’ nickname “Rougarou” originates from Louisiana folklore and is defined as a werewolf-like creature. Originally from New Orleans, Prograis relocated to Houston following Hurricane Katrina.
The co-feature also pits two of the top prospects in the 140-pound division, each with an opportunity to score the biggest win of their respective careers.
The aggressive-minded Baranchyk is a former amateur standout that packs power in both hands. The 25-year-old native of Belarus is currently ranked No. 4 in the IBF at 140 pounds and owns seven wins over previously undefeated fighters. He’s gone the 10-round distance three times and is coming off an eight-round unanimous decision over then-undefeated Keenan Smith last July on ShoBox in his adopted hometown of Miami, Okla.