"It's my first TV fight and it's my first undefeated opponent," Hovhannesyan, 29, admitted, "but it's not my biggest fight in my career."
The Glendale fighter said he's fought more than 200 amateur bouts, and in those bouts he said he's fought former Olympians and world champions. Those are the bouts Hovhannesyan said were bigger. But while Hovhannesyan might define his biggest fights as those against his toughest opposition, tonight is clearly the largest stage he will have fought on and against the most arduous opponent he's faced in the professional ranks.
The 22-year-old Marquez, who's already fought on Showtime in the past, sports a 12-0 record with eight knockouts. The New Mexico fighter last fought in April and decisioned Johnny Frazier (2-6-3). He holds notable wins over Juan Santiago (13-7-1) and Derrick Campos (20-11), but this too will likely be Marquez' toughest opponent to date.
"We look at every fight the same. We look at [Hovhannesyan] as our equal," said Marquez's manager, Jacob Maes. "We know he's a tough guy and we respect him as a fighter, but every fight we get in there, we're confident."
Hovhannesyan (12-0-1, 7 KOs) and his camp are brimming with confidence just the same.
"I think Art's gonna take him out and it's gonna work out perfect for us," said Tarverdyan of the fight as it relates to progressing his fighter's career.
Despite his unbeaten record, the road to glory for Hovhannesyan hasn't always worked out, as the local boxer has often times had difficulty finding solid opponents and has been plagued with injuries, the most recent being a hand injury. Hovhannesyan and his camp say that's in the past though.