CARL FRAMPTON is back in the ring on Saturday night to face Filipino former four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire.
After defeat by Leo Santa Cruz in January last year, the Northern Irish featherweight is rebuilding his assault on the world title – with a potential showdown at Windsor Park in the pipeline if he comes through this test.
Reuters Carl Frampton is a former multiple world title holder – and he believes he will get back to that level once again
Donaire is a seasoned and talented fighter, who at 35 has a professional record of 38-4 and won’t be a pushover by any means.
The Filipino still harbours late-career ambitions of his own and could set up his own world title shot with a shock victory.
Getty Images – Getty Donaire is hoping to make another run at the world title
When is Carl Frampton vs Nonito Donaire?
THIS fight is scheduled to take place this Saturday night – April 21.
It will be held at the SSE Arena in Belfast.
Which TV channel and live stream is it on?
YOU can watch all the action live on BT Sport and Box Nation, who will be showing the fight and undercards from Northern Ireland.
If you’re on the move, use the BT App to stream the fight, or alternatively stay here on SunSport for our comprehensive LIVE blog.
Box Nation and BT Sport 1 will be live from 7.30pm.
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Who is on the undercard?
THERE are three tasty all-Ireland clashes to look forward to before the main event, as well as talent from over the Irish Sea.
Four Irishmen – including two Belfast natives – and three English fighters are among the fighters, with Lewis Crocker, David Oliver Joyce, Tyrone McCullagh and Steven Ward making up the home contingent.
Troy Williamson, Sam Maxwell and Alex Dickinson will also feature on a bill brimming with up-and-coming stars.
Boxer Carl Frampton is back in training in preparation for his next fight
Kucherov Lightning Beat Devils 3-1 End First-round Series
Nikita Kucherov and the Tampa Bay Lightning are moving on in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Kucherov scored his 27th career postseason goal and Andrei Vasilevskiy stopped 26 shots as the top seed in the Eastern Conference beat the New Jersey Devils 3-1 on Saturday to end the first-round series in five games.
Mikhail Sergachev became the youngest player in Lightning history to score a playoff goal and Ryan Callahan, back in the lineup after missing the previous two games with an upper-body injury, sealed it with an empty-netter with 1.7 seconds remaining.
Tampa Bay, which won the first two games at home before splitting a pair on the road, advances to a second-round series against the winner of the first-round matchup between the Boston Bruins and Toronto Maple Leafs.
Kucherov, who had 100 points during the regular season, had five goals and five assists in the series. His sizzling shot past goalie Cory Schneider put Tampa Bay up 2-0 at 12:27 of the third period, and his 10 points were the most ever for a Tampa Bay player in a playoff series
Sergachev, at 19 years, 300 days, became the youngest player in franchise history to score a playoff goal, giving the Lightning a 1-0 lead in the first period.
Schneider did all he could to give the Devils a chance to extend their first playoff appearance since 2012. He stopped 35 of 37 shots, including Tyler Johnson’s breakaway that kept New Jersey within striking distance after Kyle Palmieri trimmed Tampa Bay’s lead to one goal with three minutes left.
Will Butcher and Taylor Hall assisted on the only goal for New Jersey, which played without injured defenseman Sami Vatanen.
Sergachev was second among NHL rookie defensemen in scoring with 40 points (nine goals, 31 assists) during the regular season and had had an assist for his first career postseason point in his playoff debut in Game 1.
New Jersey kept it close, killing off four consecutive penalties in the second period, when the Lightning outshot the Devils 18-4 but couldn’t expand its one-goal lead.
Schneider had two more saves early in the third as Tampa Bay sputtered on a fifth power-play opportunity.
Notes: The Lightning was 0-for-10 on the power play in Games 4 and 5, yet won both games. … Vatanen, New Jersey’s top defenseman, was injured during the opening period of Game 4 when he was checked high by Kucherov. The Devils also played without RW Stefan Noesen, who was scratched with a lower-body injury. … Callahan (upper body) returned after missing Games 3 and 4.
More AP hockey: https://apnews.com/tag/NHLhockey
Backstrom Scores In Ot Caps Take 3-2 Series Lead On Jackets
Nicklas Backstrom scored his second goal of the game 11:53 into overtime to give the Washington Capitals a 4-3 victory over the Columbus Blue Jackets on Saturday and a 3-2 lead in the first-round playoff series.
Braden Holtby made 16 of his 39 saves in the third period to help Washington get to overtime. Four of five games between the teams have gone past regulation making fatigue a factor for Game 6 Monday night in Columbus.
Evgeny Kuznetsov and T.J. Oshie scored along with Backstrom in regulation for the Capitals, who became the first home team this series to win a home game. Holtby has been in net for Washington’s three consecutive victories after replacing Philipp Grubauer in Game 2, stopping 102 of 108 shots to turn the tide.
Fellow Vezina Trophy-winning goaltender Sergei Bobrovsky allowed a soft goal to Kuznetsov as one of his four on 29 shots in the loss. Matt Calvert scored shorthanded and on a breakaway and Oliver Bjorkstrand had a deflection goal for Columbus.
Holtby said Friday referees have done a good job in the playoffs calling it like the regular season, and that trend continued in abundance in Game 5. An early roughing call on Washington’s Lars Eller yielded nothing, and a slash by Columbus’ Thomas Vanek actually led to a shorthanded goal by Calvert 10:08 into the first period.
Backstrom tied the score at 1 less than three minutes later, banking the puck off Blue Jackets defenseman David Savard’s left skate and watching it trickle down Bobrovsky’s back and in for his first goal of the playoffs.
The parade to the penalty box continued in the second period of a sloppy, mistake-filled game. A bad line change by the Blue Jackets gave the Capitals a 3-on-1 rush that was easier than any power play, with Kuznetsov going five-hole on Bobrovsky 3:21 into the second.
Just 84 seconds later, a turnover by Oshie sprung Calvert on his highlight-reel breakaway during which he whiffed on a shot before spinning, scoring and following the puck into the net. Riding a streak of double-digit penalties killed, the Capitals cashed in on their fourth power play of the game 16:42 into the second when Oshie tipped John Carlson’s point shot past Bobrovsky.
Carlson’s primary assist gave the pending unrestricted free agent defenseman eight points in the series.
A failed clear by the Capitals allowed the Blue Jackets to tie the score again 2:30 into the third period when Bjorkstrand got the tip of his blade on Ian Cole’s point shot to deflect the puck between Holtby and the post. Holtby made several big saves in the third period to keep the game going, including a stop on Pierre-Luc Dubois on a rebound and again as the 19-year-old center tried to bat the puck out of the air.
NOTES: Just 26 of the first 40 minutes were played at 5-on-5. … Thirteen of the Capitals’ past 24 playoff games have been decided in overtime. … Blue Jackets C Alexander Wennberg returned after missing Games 2, 3 and 4 following a hit to the head from Tom Wilson. He replaced Sonny Milano in the lineup. … The Capitals made no changes after winning back-to-back games in Columbus, keeping Chandler Stephenson on the second line in the absence of Andre Burakovsky, who’s out for at least the remainder of the series with an upper-body injury.
Follow Hockey Writer Stephen Whyno on Twitter at https://twitter.com/SWhyno
More NHL hockey: https://apnews.com/tag/NHLhockey
Matt Harvey Not Happy About Being Taken Out Of The Mets Starting Rotation
New York Mets pitcher Matt Harvey has lost his spot in the starting rotation, manager Mickey Callaway announced Saturday.
Harvey, who will be available coming out of the bullpen starting Tuesday, was not happy about the decision.
“It’s the decision that they made. I have to suck it up and go out there and do everything I can to get things back in gear,” he said. “I don’t have to agree with it but I have to go out there and do the best I can to get things going and do everything I can to help this team get back to where I believe I can help this team, and that’s as a starter.
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“On a scale of 1 to 10, obviously I’m at a 10 with being pissed off, but my performance hasn’t been there and I just have to do whatever I have to do to get back in the starting rotation. And that’s right now go to the bullpen and work on some things, get some things back to where they need to be and get my (s—) in order and figure it out.”
“He threw a bullpen today, and he’ll be available Tuesday,” Callaway said. “I don’t think he is obviously very happy about it. I wouldn’t say he’s discouraged. I think he’s motivated to go out there and show everybody that he can be a starter again at some point.
“He can help us . . . it’s inevitable that he’s going to make more starts for us this year. That’s how baseball goes. Everybody uses tons of starters; 11 was the average last year for every team.”
Since a solid first start, Harvey has struggled, most recently when he allowed six earned runs in the first three innings Thursday night in Atlanta as the Braves beat New York 12-4. That dropped Harvey to 0-2 with a 6.00 ERA. In 26 innings over four starts, he’s allowed 26 hits, four home runs and four walks.
With the return of injured left-handed starter? Jason Vargas imminent, the Mets have been considering going to a six-man rotation or moving a current starter to the bullpen.
Instead, lefty Zack Wheeler (1-1, 2.77) will remain in the rotation with Noah Syndergaard, Jacob deGrom and Steven Matz. Vargas, recovering from a broken bone on his non-pitching hand, will make a rehabilitation start Monday for Triple-A Las Vegas and then join the rotation.
Harvey, 29, has allowed a combined 14 runs in his last three starts. He was 5-7 with a 6.70 ERA in 2017.
The right-hander was an All-Star in 2013, but missed the 2014 season following Tommy John surgery. He helped the Mets reach the World Series in 2015, missed half of the 2016 season following surgery to correct Thoracic Outlet Syndrome, and he was out more than two months last season with a right shoulder injury.
Harvey has started 104 major league games and come out of the bullpen just once, doing it last season.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
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