The opening bell: Fights with no conflicts

When there are two major U.S. boxing cards on a Saturday night, they inevitably conflict, forcing fans to watch one live and DVR the other. That risks spoilers if they can’t resist social media or if one network gives away the other network’s results (which inexcusably has happened).

This past Saturday was a wonderful exception to the rule, because there were two major cards — both of which ended up having exciting main events — and they didn’t conflict.

There was a Top Rank ESPN tripleheader in Philadelphia on which junior featherweights Isaac Dogboe and Jessie Magdaleno engaged in a thrilling slugfest that included both fighters getting knocked down. Dogboe (19-0, 13 KOs), 23, the interim titlist from Ghana, was down in the first round but rallied to drop Magdaleno (25-1, 18 KOs), a 26-year-old southpaw from Las Vegas, in the fifth round and twice more in the 11th to win the title in sensational fashion. It was one of the best fights so far in a year that has seen several tremendous battles.

The ESPN card was over by 10 p.m. ET, which was when the action began on HBO. Its doubleheader in Brooklyn, New York, featured former secondary middleweight titlist Daniel Jacobs (34-2, 29 KOs), 31, of Brooklyn, positioning himself for an eventual rematch with unified champion Gennady Golovkin by winning a hard-fought title eliminator against Poland’s tough Maciej Sulecki (26-1, 10 KOs), 28. Jacobs got the nod 117-110 (too wide), 116-111 and 115-112, putting a bow on the win with a clean knockdown on a right hand in the 12th round.

It was nice to not have major shows conflict, and there’s more good news: It will also be the case on May 12 when ESPN has the Jorge Linares-Vasiliy Lomachenko card and it will be off the air before HBO’s Sadam Ali-Jaime Munguia card begins.