Boxing Insider Notebook: Charlo, Hurd, Lara, Donaire, Fury, Parker, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of August 28th to September 5th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Charlo, Hurd, and Lara to Defend Titles on October 14th in Brooklyn, New York
A trio of 154-pound world champions will defend their titles as part of a SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING tripleheader headlined by Erislandy Lara defending against undefeated Terrell Gausha, in an event presented by Premier Boxing Champions on Saturday, October 14 live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT) from Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING®.
The card, promoted by DiBella Entertainment and TGB Promotions, will feature four undefeated 154-pound boxers and will pave the way for an undisputed king of the 154-pound division.
Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara (24-2-2, 14 KOs), generally recognized as the best boxer in the super welterweight division and its longest reigning champion, will defend his title against undefeated 2012 U.S. Olympian Terrell Gausha (20-0, 9 KOs).
In the co-main event, hard-hitting unbeaten champion Jermell “Iron Man” Charlo (29-0, 14 KOs) takes on top contender Erickson “Hammer” Lubin (18-0, 13 KOs) while “Swift” Jarrett Hurd (20-0, 14 KOs) will make his first title defense against tough former world champion Austin “No Doubt” Trout (30-3, 17 KOs).
“On October 14 at Barclays Center, three world champions will be defending their belts, on SHOWTIME, in a night of tremendous super welterweight action,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “Long reigning Cuban Erislandy Lara takes on undefeated Olympian Terrell Gausha and newly crowned Jarrett Hurd faces respected former world champion Austin Trout. This card also features one of the best matchups that can be made between two undefeated fighters, champion Jermell Charlo and young sensation Erickson Lubin.”
“This is a blockbuster card for boxing fans,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. “The 154-pound division is full of talent and this card is loaded with the best champions and top-ranked contenders in the division. The guy who will be the eventual king of the division is fighting on this show and the fans will be treated to matches that will determine who that unified champion will be.’’
Tickets to the event will go on sale on tomorrow, August 31 at 10 a.m. ET and start at $50 (not including applicable fees). Tickets can be purchased at ticketmaster.com, barclayscenter.com or by calling 800-745-3000. Tickets can also be purchased at the American Express Box Office at Barclays Center starting Friday, September 1 at noon ET. Group discounts are available by calling 844-BKLYN-GP.
“We are thrilled to continue our best year yet of BROOKLYN BOXING with our fifth major boxing event of 2017,” said Brett Yormark, CEO of Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment. “We always aim to deliver fight fans an evening packed with top-notch matchups from start to finish, and this card certainly does that.”
Lara, a 34-year-old Cuban southpaw, owns victories over Trout, Alfredo Angulo and a slew of former champions and top contenders in addition to a controversial split decision loss to Canelo Alvarez on the way to cementing his credentials as the top boxer in the division. Lara will make the seventh defense of his world title as he continues to train with renowned trainer Ronnie Shields.
“I’m very excited to be making another title defense back on SHOWTIME headlining a great tripleheader,” said Lara. “This is an interesting fight versus an undefeated U.S. Olympian in Terrell Gausha. I know he will be ready because it’s his opportunity to beat the best fighter in the division and become a champion. But come fight night, he will quickly realize and know why I’m the consensus No. 1 super welterweight in the world. After this performance, I look forward to, one-by-one, adding a WBC and IBF title to my collection.”
The 29-year-old Gausha, of Cleveland, Ohio, earned a shot at the world title with solid victories in his last two matches. He won a hard-fought decision over Steven Martinez last August and followed it up with another impressive victory over Luis Hernandez on Feb. 10. Lara figures to be his toughest battle in his pro career that dates back to 2012.
“I’ve been talking about this since I was a three-year-old watching Muhammad Ali on television,” said Gausha. “I’m here now and blessed for this opportunity. Lara’s a tough fighter, champion and the best opponent I’ll fight on paper. He’s been in with the bigger names. But the better the opponent, the better I am, and I’m coming to dethrone him. He’s crafty, but the world hasn’t seen all that I can bring to the table. I’ll make adjustments on the fly and do things that I’ve never shown before. Seeing other Olympic team members win titles gives me motivation to earn the victory and the notoriety I’ve been looking for.”
Charlo of Houston, Texas will be making the second defense of his title, which he won by knockout victory over John Jackson on May 21, 2016. The 27-year-old Charlo successfully defended the title with a highlight reel knockout victory over fellow Texan Charles Hatley on April 22 at Barclays Center. He and his twin brother, Jermall, both held world titles at 154-pounds, before Jermall relinquished his title to move up to 160 pounds. Charlo now trains in Dallas with Derrick James, trainer of world champion Errol Spence Jr.
“Lubin is young and hungry and I know he always comes to fight, but there’s a reason why I’m where I am in the sport,” said Charlo. “I’ve been through the trenches and I don’t plan to stop anytime soon. This is what boxing always needs — two young, undefeated fighters willing to risk their ‘0’. But I think it’s a little early for Lubin to step in the ring with me, and I plan on keeping my title. October 14 I’ll show everyone why I’m a world champion.”
Lubin, 21, is nicknamed “The Hammer’’ because of his power in both hands and his ability to bring a quick conclusion to every match. Lubin of Orlando, Fla., has picked up 10 victories since the beginning of 2015 including seven knockouts on his way to contender status. Lubin most recently scored a sensational knockout of Jorge Cota in a title eliminator in March at Barclays Center.
“This is a fight for the fans,” said Lubin. “You have an undefeated champion against an undefeated Prospect of the Year. I’m very excited to be fighting for the belt and it’s truly been a dream of mine ever since I first got into boxing. Come fight night, Charlo will either give it to me or I’m going to rip the belt out of his hands. Many fans and reporters have said that he’s one of the best, and that will make it even sweeter. My mentality will be to seek and destroy, so everyone tune-in to SHOWTIME on October 14, you will witness boxing’s new superstar!”
Hurd, 26, will be making the first defense of the title that he won with a KO victory over Tony Harrison on Feb. 25. Fighting out of Accokeek, Maryland, Hurd soared up the rankings with stoppage victories over previously unbeaten fighters Frank Galarza and Oscar Molina at Barclays Center plus veteran Jo Jo Dan.
“I got a Trout to catch,’’ said Hurd. “His losses have all been to top champions Canelo Alvarez, Erislandy Lara and Jermall Charlo. But I’m on a streak of six straight knockouts and Trout has never been stopped, so I’m looking for the stoppage to make a statement that the other fighters couldn’t make. This is definitely my toughest fight, and I didn’t have to take it since it’s a voluntary defense. But I wanted this fight to stop Austin Trout, proving to the fans and people in general I’m the real deal and a true champion.”
Trout, a 31-year-old southpaw from Las Cruces, New Mexico, has faced some of the top 154-pound boxers in the division. He defeated Miguel Cotto in New York to win a title in 2012 and has close losses to Canelo Alvarez and Lara on his resume. In his most recent attempt at winning the title, Trout gave Jermall Charlo perhaps the toughest test of his career after looking impressive in four straight victories leading up to the challenge.
‘What a blessing it is to have this opportunity at a world title shot,” said Trout. “I want to thank everyone who has been in my corner to help get me career defining fights. It’s refreshing to see young champions showing heart and testing their skill with the best in the game. With that said, salute to Hurd for allowing this fight to go through.”
Nonito Donaire Returns to the Ring on September 23rd to Face Ruben Hernandez
Exciting former world champion Nonito Donaire (37-4-0, 24 KOs) will return to the ring to take on Ruben Garcia Hernandez (22-2-1, 9 KOs) for the WBC Silver Featherweight Title in a bout that takes place alongside the World Boxing Super Series Quarterfinals on Saturday, September 23 from the Alamodome live in San Antonio and presented by Ringstar Sports.
Additional action will feature a 10-round showdown between once-beaten cruiserweights Keith Tapia (17-1, 11 KOs) and Lateef Kayode (21-1, 16 KOs) that will serve as the reserve match for the World Boxing Super Series Quarterfinal matchup of Cuban WBA World Champion Yunier ‘The KO Doctor’ Dorticos (21-0, 20 KOs) versus Russian Dmitry ‘Russian Hammer’ Kudryashov (21-1, 21 KOs).
Donaire returns to the ring after a controversial loss last November to Jessie Magdaleno. Donaire recently teamed up with Ringstar Sports where he plans to reclaim his supremacy in the featherweight division. Garcia Hernandez is a tested Mexican fighter looking to make a name for himself in the U.S. at the Alamodome.
“I’m ready to return to the ring and show that I still have what it takes to be a world champion and face the best in this sport,” said Donaire. “I’m thankful to Ringstar Sports for helping me in this next chapter of my career and I know with them in my corner, I’ll be back to where I belong soon. I’m excited to give the great fight fans in San Antonio a great show, just like when I fought Wilfredo Vazquez at the Alamodome in 2012. After this fight, I’m coming for all of the featherweight champions and to prove I’m the best in the division.”
“I am grateful for this opportunity and I can’t wait to get in the ring,” said Garcia Hernandez. “I know that I am facing a great fighter and that has motivated me to train harder than ever before for this matchup. I’m planning on giving it my all and giving the fans a great fight. I hope Donaire comes to fight because I am coming to knock him ou on September 23rd.”
Tickets for the live event are priced at $250, $125, $100, $50, and $30, and are on sale now. Tickets are available at ticketmaster.com HERE.
“The return of Nonito Donaire to the ring is a treat for boxing fans in San Antonio as he looks to return to his place as one of the top fighters in the sport,” said Richard Schaefer, Chairman & CEO of Ringstar Sports. “He will be in an all-action matchup against a tough Mexican fighter in Ruben Garcia Hernandez and I expect them to give the fans an exciting night. The entire card will be jam packed with rising prospects and contenders, plus a great cruiserweight showdown between Keith Tapia and Lateef Kayode that will be the reserve match for the World Boxing Super Series Quarterfinal that night.”
The Filipino fighter known as the “Filipino Flash” Donaire grew up in Northern California and now fights out of Las Vegas. His last fight was November 2016 when he battled Magdeleno for a junior featherweight world title in a bout that he lost by controversial decision. Hoping for a rematch that was never made, he partnered with Ringstar Sports looking to return to the top of the featherweight division. Prior to that, Donaire won belts in four different weight classes and was recognized as the 2012 Fighter of the Year by the BWAA, ESPN and Ring Magazine.
Fighting out of Mexico City, Mexico, Hernandez made his pro debut in 2010. Since that time he has battled his way through Mexico while fighting in the U.S. four times. Hernandez enters this bout on a seven fight winning streak and plans to make a name for himself in the United States on September 23rd when he takes on Donaire.
The 27-year-old Tapia returns to the ring after dropping a decision to unbeaten Andrew Tabiti that snapped a 17-fight win streak to begin his professional career. Originally from Puerto Rico but fighting out of the Bronx, Tapia has picked up victories over durable veterans Garrett Wilson and Anthony Caputo Smith and will look to cement his status as a cruiserweight contender on September 23rd.
A former title challenger at cruiserweight, Kayode last battled Denis Lebedev for his cruiserweight crown in a November 2015 bout in Russia. Fighting out of Hollywood, Calif., by way of Nigeria, Kayode has shared the ring with the likes of Antonio Tarver and Luis Ortiz while taking down Felix Cora Jr, Matt Godfrey and Nick Kisner on his way to an unbeaten mark after his first 21 pro fights.
Hennessy Sports and YouTube Partner to Announce Groundbreaking Partnership to Show Parker vs. Fury Exclusively Live
Hennessy Sports is delighted to announce a groundbreaking partnership with YouTube that will offer a new way of watching Boxing.
The blockbuster WBO World Heavyweight Championship title fight between Joseph Parker and Hughie Fury on Saturday 23rd September at the Manchester Arena will be shown exclusively live in the UK and Ireland on YouTube (www.youtube.com/parkerfury) on a pay-per-view basis with further countries to be announced shortly.
A portion of the undercard will also be streamed for free before the big fight, this is also available live on www.youtube.com/parkerfury. Watch this event anywhere online or on your smart TV, game console, PC, Mac, mobile, tablet and more for a special advance purchase offer price of only £9.99 in the UK and €11.99 in the Republic of Ireland until midnight on Sunday 17th September.*
www.youtube.com/parkerfury is the home of Hennessy Sports YouTube Channel which is called The Boxing Channel presented by Hennessy Sports.
This represents fantastic value for money to watch one of Britain and Ireland’s most exciting young talents challenging for the prestigious World Heavyweight title at half the price of regular Pay-Per-View events and viewers can watch live at a fan-friendly UK and Ireland prime-time.
With 1.5 billion viewers globally, Hennessy Sports believes that partnering with YouTube (which is the world’s biggest provider of online video content) could prove to be a pivotal change in the sport’s landscape.
Through the years boxing has been delivered to fans via the traditional route of TV and after receiving numerous offers from TV broadcasters for the event, promoter Mick Hennessy, CEO of Hennessy Sports, has made the bold and visionary move to partner with YouTube.
Hennessy believes this will take Parker v Fury to a global audience; bring in younger viewers and attract a new generation of fans to the sport with the wide range of devices that the fight can be viewed on.
Claudio Marrero To Put WBA Interim Featherweight Title On Line Against Jesus Rojas on September 15th
On Friday, Sept. 15, one day before the highly anticipated battle for middleweight supremacy between Canelo Alvarez and Gennady “GGG” Golovkin, WBA Interim Featherweight Champion Claudio Marrero (22-1, 16 KOs) will make the first defense of his title against Jesus Rojas (25-1-2, 18 KOs) in the 12-round main event of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN at the MGM Grand Marquee Ballroom in Las Vegas. The ESPN3 livestream of the undercard bouts begins at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT, followed by the main event at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT on ESPN Deportes and streaming live on ESPN3 and on ESPN2 at 1:15 a.m. ET/10:15 p.m. PT.
Marrero, of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, captured the Interim WBA Featherweight Title with a devastating first-round knockout of Carlos Zambrano in April 2017. Though suffering his only defeat against Jesus Cuellar in 2013, Marrero has scored six victories since then, five of them by knockout.
Rojas will return after an impressive eighth-round technical knockout victory against the previously undefeated Abraham “Chamaco” Lopez. The native of Caguas, Puerto Rico, has taken on the likes of former world champion Jorge “El Travieso” Arce and Jorge “El Pilón” Lara of Mexico (who will take on Joseph “JoJo” Diaz in the co-main event of Canelo-Golovkin). Rojas will look to take yet another step towards the top of the 126-pound division with a victory over Marrero.
In the co-main event, Boston’s Rashidi “Speedy” Ellis (18-0, 12 KOs) will make the second defense of his IBF North American title against Juan Carlos “Merengue” Abreu (19-3-1, 18 KOs). Ellis earned his crown with an impressive first-round knockout victory over Eddie “E-Boy” Gomez in December 2016. In his first defense, Ellis fought in a toe-to-toe battle against John Karl Sosa en route to a majority decision victory in April 2017. Ellis faces a tough challenge in Abreu, a veteran of the Dominican Republic with tough fights against Pablo Cesar “El Demoledor” Cano and Humberto “La Zorrita” Soto on his resume.
Ryan “Kingry” Garcia (10-0, 9 KOs) will open up the ESPN Deportes transmission in an eight-round fight for the Junior NABF Super Featherweight title against Miguel Carrizoza (10-2, 2 KOs) of Nogales, Mexico. Garcia, a young prospect of Victorville, Calif., is coming off a spectacular first-round knockout of Mario Antonio Macia and will look to earn his seventh knockout victory in a row on Sept. 15.
Horacio “Violento” Garcia (32-3-1, 22 KOs) of Guadalajara, Mexico will take on fellow countryman Diuhl Olguin (11-7-2, 9 KOs) in an eight-round super bantamweight rematch. In their first encounter, Garcia lost via an upset unanimous decision in July of this year. In the night’s swing bout, Alexis “Laberinto” Salazar (11-3, 3 KOs) of Tlaquepagque, Mexico will take on Evan Torres (6-4, 5 KOs) of El Paso, Texas in a scheduled six-round middleweight fight. The bout will be a rematch of their May 2017 fight, which Salazar won via close split decision.
Opponents for former IBF champion Jose “El Tecuala” Argumendo (20-3-1, 11 KOs), who will participate in an eight-round minimumweight bout, and Philadelphia’s Damon “No Smilin'” Allen, Jr. (12-0-1, 5 KOs), who will return in an eight-round lightweight fight, will be announced shortly.
Marrero vs. Rojas is a 10-round featherweight fight presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with TGB Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, BORN BOLD; Hennessy, Never Stop, Never Settle; and Interjet. The event will beheld at the MGM Grand Marquee Ballroom in Las Vegas on Friday, Sept. 15. Doors open at 3:00 p.m. PT, and the first fight begins at 3:30 p.m. PT. The ESPN3 livestream of the undercard bouts begins at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m., followed by the main event at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. on ESPN Deportes and streaming live on ESPN3 and on ESPN2 at 1:15 a.m. ET / 10:15 p.m. PT.
FIGHTNIGHT Live Sets New Record with 200,000 Plus Facebook Views for Saturday Show
Before fight fans turned their attention to the desert with knockout PPV numbers last Saturday, the FIGHTNIGHT LIVE Facebook series landed a massive haymaker of its own. Linacre Media and CES Boxing partnered on a pre Mayweather-McGregor card that ran from 6-9:30 p.m. ET live from Foxwoods in Connecticut, with the tech-forward, fan-friendly Facebook broadcast platform drawing an audience of 201,935 fight fans, and counting.
“Fight fans were primed and ready for Saturday night’s mega-event from Las Vegas, and we were pleased to be able to entertain so many with great fights from Foxwoods for the hours leading up to Showtime PPV,” said Mark Fratto, Principal and Director of Business Development, Linacre Media. “Of course we had some fans thinking they’d get to see Mayweather-McGregor, but we were quick to point them in the proper direction for that content. The hundreds of thousands that stayed on our platform saw some great action, including a wild ending in the CES main event. As a matter of fact, we saw 50,000 more fight fans log-in on Sunday to review the closing moments, and as always with our interactive Facebook shows, offer their own opinions and interpretations. We’re pleased to be able to announce that seven or more shows are being added to the calendar from September through November, including one leading into GGG – Canelo.”
Over the first four months of programming, the numbers on the FIGHTNIGHT LIVE series have showed promise and potential for the new platform with an average of more than 85,000 fight fans tuning in per event. The August “Super Saturday” from Foxwoods (202,000), the July Roy Jones Jr. “Desert Showdown” from Phoenix (63,000), the May “Slugfest at the Sun” from Mohegan Sun (46,000) and the June “Rosemont Rumble” from Chicago (32,000) saw a total of more than 8,000 total hours of Facebook video consumed by 342,000-plus users across all devices.
In addition to the raw viewership numbers, the fully-interactive, fan-friendly productions have seen more than 33,000 collective live post engagements, including more than 3,000 “likes” or “loves,” more than 10,000 comments and 3,000-plus shares.
FIGHTNIGHT LIVE broadcasts are viewed by 76 percent men, 24 percent women. The top demographic is comprised of males aged 25-34, which encompasses approximately 30 percent of the audience, on average.
The Aug. 26 Foxwoods “Super Saturday” show stands out individually with 201,935 views across 3,336 live hours of content, with 8,224 viewer interactions including 1,133 “likes” or “loves,” 1,570 comments and 1,392 shares.
“For more than 25 years, CES has delivered boxing excitement to fans all over the world. The tradition continued Saturday night at Foxwoods when we teamed with FIGHTNIGHT LIVE by using cutting edge technology allowing fight fans to view the fights live on Facebook. This historic, record-setting event was the result of a great production team and action-packed, competitive fights,” said CES President Jimmy Burchfield, Sr.
Facebook FIGHTNIGHT LIVE has been delivered to fans absolutely free since its May 2017 launch courtesy of corporate partners like Barbour One 9, Talent Management and Entertainment Production (www.barbourone9.com) and Northeastern