It's a meeting at the lightweight crossroads for Ivan Redkach and Argenis Mendez, both of whom look to conquer past demons ahead of their 10-round clash Tuesday evening live from Sportsman Lodge in Studio City, California.
Their FS1-televised main event - which serves as part of the ongoing Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on FS1: Toe to Toe series - comes just above the lightweight limit. Redkach tipped the scales at 136.6 lbs, while Mendez was slightly heavier at 136.8 lbs.
While a belt isn't at stake, a future title shot is certainly in store for the winner. Mendez (23-5-1, 12KOs) came up short in his previous quasi-eliminator, managing an early knockdown of British lightweight southpaw Luke Campbell but ultimately dropping a 12-round decision to the 2012 Olympic Gold medalist last July in Leeds, England.
The loss was Mendez' second in a row, having suffered a knockout loss to Robert Easter Jr. just three months prior. In Redkach, the Brooklyn-based Domincan faces his second straight left-handed boxer.
Redkach (20-2-1, 16KOs) was on a roll before running into Dejan Zlaticanin in June '15, suffering a 4th round stoppage loss for the first defeat of his pro career. The Los Angeles-based Ukrainian southpaw didn't fare much better in the aftermath, picking up a confidence-boosting 3rd round knockout of Erick Martinez later that year before spending 2016 fighting to a draw with Luis Cruz and dropping a lopsided decision to Tevin Farmer.
He has since enlisted the services of new head trainer, cancer survivor Jose Santa Cruz who also guides the careers of his sons Leo - the three-division and reigning featherweight titlist - and Antonio, the latter whom also fights on this show versus Mexico's Jonathan Torres. Redkach and the elder Santa Cruz first worked together earlier this year in a solid 8th round knockout of Demond Brock on the undercard of Leo's title-regaining win over Carl Frampton in their rematch this past January.
In the co-feature, Brandon Figueroa faces Luis Saavedra in a scheduled eight-round super bantamweight contest. Figueroa (11-0, 8 KOs) - whose older brother Omar is a former lightweight titlist - weighed 121.8 lbs., while Saavedra (7-2, 3KOs) was slightly lighter at 121.2 lbs.
Opening the show, the youngest of the Santa Cruz family, Antonio makes his televised debut as he faces Jonathan Torres, in a six-round bantamweight clash. Santa Cruz (5-2, 2KOs) weighed 117.6 lbs., while the resurgent Torres (7-5-1, 2KOs) weighed 117.8 lbs. as he looks to extend his five fight win streak.
Ivan Redkach, 136.6 lbs. vs Argenis Mendez, 136.8 lbs. - 10 rds, lightweight
Brandon Figueroa, 121.8 lbs. vs. Luis Saavedra, 121.2 lbs. - 8 rds, super bantamweight
Antonio Santa Cruz, 117.6 lbs. vs. Jonathan Torres, 117.8 lbs. - 6 rds, bantamweight
Luis Bello, 140.2 lbs. vs. Jose Araiza, 140.4 lbs.- 8 rds, super lightweight
Richard Acevedo, 149.8 lbs. vs. Anthony Woods, 149.8 lbs. - 4 rds, welterweight
Herbert Acevedo, 143.6 lbs. vs. Jerome Rodriguez, 144 lbs. - 6 rds, welterweight
Julian Rodarte, 132.4 lbs. vs. Jesus Aguinaga, 133 lbs.- 6 rds, featherweight
Juan Fuñez, 135 lbs. vs. Matt Murphy, 135 lbs. - 4 rds, lightweight