A few notes from around the boxing world:
Junior featherweight contender Cesar Juarez (17-4, 13 KOs), 24, of Mexico, who lost a decision in a sensational brawl with Nonito Donaire for a vacant world title fight on Dec. 11, will return to face the Philippines’ Alvin Bais (15-6-1, 4 KOs), 27, in a 10-round bout at 124 pounds on March 5 (beIN Sports Espanol) in Mexico City, Juarez's manager Sean Gibbons told ESPN.com on Tuesday.
“I learned a lot from the fight with Nonito Donaire and I feel I am just getting better,” Juarez said. “This is the first step back to me becoming a world champion one day soon.”
The bout, in Juarez’s hometown, is the co-feature on the card headlined by the return of former welterweight titleholder Antonio Margarito (38-8, 27 KOs), who is ending a more than four-year retirement to face Jorge Paez Jr. (39-7-2, 23 KOs) in a junior middleweight bout. Juarez survived two fourth-round knockdowns against Donaire to storm back before losing the fight of the year contender. “We’re just bringing Cesar back into the mix with this fight and then we’ll look at all opportunities for another shot at the title,” Gibbons said.
Lightweight Michael Perez (23-1-2, 11 KOs), 26, of Newark, New Jersey, will face Mexico’s Martin Honorio (33-9-1, 16 KOs), 36, a former featherweight and junior lightweight world title challenger, on March 4 (Estrella TV) at the Belasco Theatre in downtown Los Angeles. The fight is the main event of the one-year anniversary card of Golden Boy Promotions’ “LA Fight Club” series. Perez is 8-0-1 since a sixth-round knockout loss to Omar Figueroa Jr. in January 2012. Honorio won his last fight to end a three-fight skid.
Amateur heavyweight standout Pano Tiatia, 19, of St. George, Utah, has signed a contract with manager Cameron Dunkin and will soon make his professional debut. The 220-pound Tiatia, who is of Samoan descent, is a bit short for a heavyweight at 5-foot-9, but Dunkin raved about his hand speed and power. “He bobs and weaves and backs people up. He’s really strong,” Dunkin said. Tiatia, 73-6 in the unpaid ranks, won four national amateur titles and also played high school football.