Sports

Chicago boxer one win from world title

Carlos Molina is on the cusp of his ultimate goal.

Molina, a South Side resident, has finally earned a title shot. On Saturday, he'll battle IBF light middleweight world champion Ishe Smith in Las Vegas. The bout is part of the showdown between Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Saul "Canelo" Alvarez; it will air on pay per view via Showtime.

Smith is a Las Vegas resident and a strong favorite according to oddsmakers, but that doesn't bother Molina.

"I'm used to being the underdog and going into other people's hometowns and everyone thinking I won't win," said Molina, 30. "I'm used to dealing with that. I never let anything get me down. I prepare myself mentally and physically for any obstacle."

Molina's career has been sidetracked by what some analysts have called questionable judging and disqualifications. He said those obstacles have only sharpened his focus, however.

"I've been through a lot of bad decisions and stuff, so I'm just staying focused," Molina said. "Besides, I treated all my fights like they were for a world championship. I love the pressure. I feel like it pushes me through camp and keeps me working hard."

If Molina wins, he'd be the first Chicago-based fighter to become world champion since David Diaz in 2007.

The fight card has set a record for the largest live gate in history for a boxing event at $19.9 million, according to promoters.

Bill Hillmann is a RedEye special contributor.

Want more? Discuss this article and others on RedEye Sports' Facebook page

Copyright © 2015, RedEye
Related Content
  • 'Great team effort' by joggers saves man in the lake

    'Great team effort' by joggers saves man in the lake

    During an early morning jog along Lake Michigan with his wife and children Tuesday, John Corba spotted a man struggling in the water nearly 30 yards from the shore.

  • Grateful Dead drummer dishes dirt, drug dependency in new book

    Grateful Dead drummer dishes dirt, drug dependency in new book

    As a founding member of the Grateful Dead, Bill Kreutzmann watched the world change from behind his drum kit, shoveling coal in the wildly tribal rhythm section as the Dead went from San Francisco underground curio to ground-breaking indie outfit, then progenitor of the improvisation-based rock...

  • Book comes out ahead of Grateful Dead farewell concerts in Chicago this weekend

    Book comes out ahead of Grateful Dead farewell concerts in Chicago this weekend

    The three clichés that color every good rock star story is “sex, drugs and rock ’n’ roll." For the Grateful Dead, the trailblazing rock band known for its improvisational style, revelatory live shows and dedicated fanbase, there was that and so much more.

  • 10 best movies of 2015 so far

    10 best movies of 2015 so far

    The year’s half-over! How did that happen? No idea. With six months of a good year of movies in the books, let’s see how the Top 10 list is looking, with a quote from each respective review. Note: There are a few I’ve seen that I really like that haven’t yet opened in Chicago, and those aren’t...

  • If you make less than $50,440, proposal could increase overtime pay

    If you make less than $50,440, proposal could increase overtime pay

    Nearly 5 million more Americans would qualify for overtime pay under new rules proposed Tuesday by the Obama administration, a long-anticipated move expected to affect a broad swath of salaried employees from store managers to social workers to restaurant shift supervisors.

  • Chicago's minimum wage increase attracting workers to city

    Chicago's minimum wage increase attracting workers to city

    Unlike previous summers, UniStaff is experiencing a spike in job applicants at its Little Village location, a trend the branch manager says is tied to the city's minimum wage increase to $10 per hour beginning Wednesday.

Comments
Loading