Boxing Insider Notebook: Pacquiao, Rios, Ward, Molina, Sosa, and more……
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of October 22nd to October 29th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Wallin Scores TKO Victory
Swedish heavyweight Otto Wallin (3-0, 3 KOs) put on a dominant display to defeat Garbor Farkas (6-29, 3 KOs) inside three-rounds at the EWE Arena in Oldenberg, Germany.
In a fight scheduled for four-rounds, Wallin took control from the opening bell, landing the decisive blows and finally forcing the stoppage at 2:53 minutes in the third-round.
“The fight went well,” said Wallin.
“I was landing some big shots in every round. I knew I could take him out and luckily in the third-round I did. This was only my third fight as a professional and I know I still have a long way to go. Every day I am learning and improving but I feel I am adapting well and I can’t wait to get back into ring.”
HBO Sports’ 24/7 Pacquiao vs. Rios Debuts November 9th
HBO Sports’ groundbreaking 24/7reality franchise, which has captured 17 Sports Emmy Awards, returns in November for its 18th boxing installment with 24/7 Pacquiao/Rios, it was announced by Rick Bernstein, executive producer, HBO Sports. Debuting Satruday, November 9 (12:15-12:45 a.m. ET/PT), the all-access series follows two elite fighters as they prepare for their intriguing welterweight showdown Nov. 23 from the Venetian Macao’s Cotai Arena in Macau, China.
“The intensity and significance of the fight will be a great launching point for this all-new edition of 24/7,” noted Bernstein. “We are eager to follow both teams, since there is so much new ground to cover, especially as both sides prepare for a fight taking place at an exciting international destination.”
Episodes two and three of 24/7 Pacquiao/Rios debut Saturday, Nov. 16 (9:30-10:00 p.m.) and Thursday, Nov. 21 (10:00-10:30 p.m.), with the finale premiering two nights before the high-stakes welterweight bout. All episodes will have multiple replay dates on HBO, and the series will also be available on HBO On Demand and HBO GO.
24/7 Pacquiao/Rios will provide exclusive behind-the-scenes access, along with in-depth interviews, as the fighters prepare for their highly anticipated meeting.
Jason Sosa vs. McDowell on November 16th
Junior lightweight Jason Sosa of Camden, NJ will take on Chazz McDowell of Yonkers, NY in a scheduled eight-round contest on Saturday, November 16th in the Events Center at the Sands Casino Resort in Bethlehem, PA. The Sosa-Morales fight will serve as the semifinal to the 10-round main event between welterweights Ronald Cruz of Bethlehem and Hector Munoz, of Albuquerque, New Mexico. The first of seven fights begins at 7pm.
In the last 13 months, Sosa (right), 25, has knocked out Clinton Douglas, of Philadelphia, PA, Isaac Suarez, of Lancaster, PA, Joseph Chip Perez, of East Hartford, CT., Georgi Kevlishvili, of Gori, Georgia, in Eastern Europe, and Tyrone Luckey, of Middletown, NJ.
Though none of the five were world-rated, none of them had a losing record (38-14-3 overall) and each was solid pro who came to win. The one-punch knockout of Luckey—done with a devastating left hook to the body—stamped Sosa as someone to watch at 130 pounds. Not bad when you consider than Sosa only had three amateur fights and lost two of them.
Sosa also fought a pair of draws: one at 6 rounds, one at 8, with Angel Ocasio, of Philadelphia, who is 7-0-2. The only setback in Sosa’s career came late in 2010 when, on 48 hours’ notice and out of shape at 138.5 pounds, he accepted a fight with hard-hitting junior welterweight Treysean Wiggins, of Newburgh, NY, and was K0d in one round in Atlantic City, NJ.
Fernando Guerrero to Face Raymond Gatica on November 11th as Co-Main Event
One of boxing’s most popular action fighters, former middleweight world title challenger Fernando Guerrero, will look to thrill boxing fans on Monday, Nov. 11 when he squares off against Austin’s Raymond Gatica in the 10-round co-main event of FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes’ Golden Boy Live! (10:00 p.m. ET/9:00 p.m. CT/7:00 p.m. PT) at Cowboys Dancehall in San Antonio, Texas.
“I’m excited to return to the ring and get back in the title picture,” said Guerrero. “The Texas fans were great to me when I fought there against JC Candelo last year and I promise to give them another show to remember on November 11.”
“Fernando Guerrero is a big name in the division and I have a lot of respect for him,” said Gatica. “But, I have every intention of beating him in front of my fellow Texans and making a big statement.”
In the 10-round main event, it’s a meeting of junior welterweight southpaws when Fidel “The Atrisco Kid” Maldonado Jr. and Luis Ramos Jr. meet in the ring.
“Fernando Guerrero is one of my favorite fighters to watch and he brings it every time,” said Mike Battah, President of Battah*Leija Promotions.
“He had a great performance in Texas against JC Candelo and the San Antonio fans wanted him again, so we got him. He’s in for a tough test in Raymond Gatica and I think we’re going to be in for a great fight on November 11.”
Also added to the televised portion of the card is an eight-round middleweight bout featuring unbeaten 2012 U.S. Olympian Terrell Gausha against an opponent to be determined.
Twenty-seven year-old southpaw Fernando Guerrero (25-2, 19 KO’s) has always been a must-see for boxing fans and he doesn’t disappoint. A native of the Dominican Republic who later became synonymous with his adopted hometown of Salisbury, Maryland, Guerrero parlayed a four-fight winning streak from 2011-2012 into a world title shot against current WBO Middleweight Champion Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin in April of 2013. Guerrero fell short of victory that night, but he’s eager to get back in the title race beginning with his Nov. 11 bout against Gatica.
Austin’s Raymond Gatica (13-1, 8 KO’s) is a former Texas State Welterweight Champion who is unbeaten in two fights since moving to the middleweight division in 2013, where the 29-year-old upset Raul Casarez in April. In his most recent bout on June 28, he stopped Juan Reyna in four rounds, making it clear that he’s ready for his FOX national television debut against Guerrero.
Ring 8 to Honor Danny Garcia as Fighter of the Year
The 27th annual RING 8 Holiday Event and Awards Ceremony will be held Sunday afternoon (12:00-5:30 p.m. ET), December 8 at the famed Russo’s On The Bay in Howard Beach, New York.
The highlight of the festivities will be the presentation of the prestigious Ring 8 Fighter of the Year award to Philadelphia’s undefeated world junior welterweight champion Danny “Swift” Garcia (27-0, 16 KOs). In 2013, the 25-year-old Garcia won impressive 12-round decisions over world champions Lucas Matthyssee (34-2) and Zab Judah (42-7), to successfully defend his World Boxing Association (WBA) Super and World Boxing Council (WBC) 140-pound world titles.
“Our members really look forward to this gala event every year,” Ring 8 president Bob Duffy said.
“We will be honoring some of the biggest names in boxing, such as Danny Garcia, as well as those less known nationally but equally appreciated in New York. Ring 8 proudly continues its sterling record for lending a helping hand to those in the boxing community who are less fortunate, some requiring assistance towards paying their rent, medical expenses, or whatever justifiable need. Each year our Holiday Event and Awards Ceremony celebrates our great sport of boxing, insuring much-needed funding is raised so we may continue our mission for our needy brothers and sisters in boxing. We will never waver from their corners.”
British Boxing Board of Control Backs Warren in Smith Dispute
The British Boxing Board of Control have today decided that British Super-Featherweight Champion Stephen Smith will not be allowed to defend his title on any promotion other than that of his promoter Frank Warren, which is scheduled for Saturday 7th December at the Liverpool Echo Arena.
Earlier this month, Smith announced that he would participate in the defence of his title against Gary Sykes on Saturday 23rd November in Manchester on a show promoted by Eddie Hearn.
However, Smith and Hearn chose to ignore the fact that the BBBofC has already formally sanctioned the fight to take place at the Liverpool Echo Arena on Saturday 7th December.
Robert Smith, the General Secretary of the BBBoC, today stated that until the Board has heard the dispute and made a decision Stephen Smith “will not be able to appoint another person to act on his behalf as manager nor will he be able to negotiate with others on his own behalf. It follows that, prior thereto, the Board will not allow him to participate in a contest arranged by a third party.”
Ward vs. Rodriguez Set for November 16th, Molina Jr. and Gonzales to Appear
In his last fight against unbeaten Cleveland native Mickey Bey back in July of this year, Covina, Calif. lightweight John Molina Jr. looked like he may have trouble with the faster and accurate punching Bey. That presumption became more evident as the rounds went by.
Although Molina was able to land one hellacious shot after another, Bey was just as able to withstand them through the first nine rounds. It wasn’t until the 10th and final round that Molina unleashed a series of these dangerous blows that put Bey into another hemisphere and provided Molina with the win and a “Knockout of the Year” candidate.
In a non-televised bout, Molina now has been added to fight in a 8-round bout underneath Andre “Son of God” Ward who will put his world titles on the line against the undefeated Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez (24-0, 16 Kos) in a scheduled 12-round World Championship main event on November 16 at the Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario, California. That bout will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 9:30 p.m. ET/PT.
Molina (26-3, 21 KOs) has an extraordinary ability to hurt men with his fists. Fans, trainers, promoters, networks and virtually every other living creature walking the earth crave the same thing from their fighters: big knockouts. Molina possesses something most men do not and as Bey found out, he will use every last second to do harm to you with his fists. Molina is now looking for redemption: earning another shot at the championship while knowing he carries natural destruction in his hands to achieve the title.
In baseball, the great equalizer is a home run. In football, the touchdown pass does it. In boxing, it’s the knockout. It can turn the worse case scenario in a blink of an eye.
Joe Goossen, Molina’s trainer, believes the confidence and experience, combined with Molina’s extraordinary large size for a lightweight, will bode well for his fighter, as he uses his willpower and heavy hands to reach the world championship pinnacle.
The superb non-televised companion bout to the Ward-Rodriguez main event will be Ward stable mate and world rated super middleweight Brandon Gonzales (17-0-1, 10 KOs) of Sacramento, CA, who will bring his undefeated record to Ontario in a 10-round bout against another undefeated fighter in Jonathan “Country Boy” Nelson (19-0, 9 KOs) from Little Rock, Ark.
Trained by Virgil Hunter, Brandon’s last bout televised by HBO, and first scheduled 10-round fight, against South Africa’s Thomas Oosthuizen (21-0-2, 13 KOs), saw Gonzales having to settle for a disputed draw against the heavily favored world contender, although Gonzales was the aggressor from the outset and appeared to be the clear winner at the end of the bout.
Nelson’s uncle and trainer Ozell Nelson, who guided the career of Nelson’s friend and mentor, former world champion Jermain Taylor, and the one responsible for his nephew’s entry into boxing, believes Nelson has the ability to become a world champion. Said Jonathan, “I know that a lot of people – since Jermain Taylor and I have the same trainer – like to say there’s a lot of similarities in our fighting styles. If I see an opening, I take it.”
After falling short of qualifying for the Olympics, one of the amateur distinctions Nelson has going into this bout with Gonzales is he holds a points win (13-6) over Brandon in a 2006 contest.
Dyah Davis Ready for DeGale on November 16th
Dyah Davis is the former NABF champion who has faced and beaten undefeated fighters and shared the ring with the WBC world super middleweight champion Sakio Bika.
He is a tough American who is fully focused on reaching the very top of his sport and looking to add to his tally of 22 wins when he faces 2008 Olympic champion and WBC Silver super middleweight champion, James DeGale MBE, on November 16th at Glow, Bluewater, live on Channel 5 from 10pm.
Known as “Dangerous,” he certainly has the record to give the former Team GB Olympian a tough encounter, as his namesake suggests.
But Davis also has the genetics, as he literally and truly has world-class pedigree coursing through his veins as the son of the 1976 Olympic gold medalist Howard Davis Jr.
Howard was one of the greatest amateur boxers, winning three US National championships and capturing a gold medal, picking up the Val Barker Trophy in the process, as the most outstanding boxer of the 1976 Olympic Games in Montreal, Canada.
This is no small feat, but one made all the more impressive by the roster of the USA Olympic Boxing Team at the games, that featured gold medalists Sugar Ray Leonard, Michael and Leon Spinks and Leo Randolph.
He turned professional after the Olympics and went on to a pro record of 36–6–1 with 14 knockouts, before retiring in 1996.
In his time as a pro, Howard challenged Jim Watt for the WBC lightweight title in Glasgow in 1980, losing a unanimous decision over 15 gruelling rounds.
He challenged Edwin Rosario in 1984 for the same title, losing to a split decision and he was stopped by James “Buddy” McGirt in 1988 for the IBF light welterweight title.
Now, son and super middleweight contender Dyah Davis pursues the world professional title that has eluded his family and is fighting to break out of the long and certainly impressive shadow cast by his father.
Focussed on claiming a world title, Davis will be putting everything he can into taking the next step towards this, when he meets DeGale at Glow on November 16th.
Nielsen to Face Jose Pinzon on November 16th
WBA & WBO Intercontinental Middleweight Champion Patrick Nielsen (20-0, 9 KOs) will defend his titles against Jose Pinzon (24-5, 15 KOs) from Mexico on November 16.
For the first time in his career, Nielsen will fight in Albertslund. Tickets for the Nordic Fight Night at Musikteatret have been selling fast.
“To fight in Albertslund will be the biggest moment of my career and I will not allow Pinzon to spoil it,” Nielsen stated.
“I have a lot of respect for him. Mexicans have a great boxing education and tradition. They are aggressive and tough, but so am I. There is no way he can beat me in front of my home fans. I´m in great shape already, I´ve trained hard with Joey Gamache, and I´m ready for a big night of boxing in my old hood!”
Pinzon, 26, travels to Copenhagen with a record of 24 victories and five losses, including 15 KOs. He is a former WBC Youth World Champion and WBC Interim Latino Champion.
“Pinzon is a typical Mexican-styled ring warrior,” promoter Nisse Sauerland said.
“He comes to fight. Patrick will need to be clever and use all of his ring craft to beat him. I expect a tough battle that will fascinate the fans in Albertslund. We expect a sell-out crowd and great atmosphere.”
Micki Nielsen, Rashid “The Dream” Kassem and Simen Smaadal will also be in action on November 16. More fights will be announced shortly.