Boxing Insider Notebook: Pacquiao and Taxes, Judah, Molina, Kovalev, Fortuna, and more…
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of November 19th to November 26th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Bob Arum’s Statement on Manny Pacquiao’s Tax Issues
Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum issued the following statement regarding reports that Philippine authorities have questioned Manny Pacquiao’s payment of taxes:
“Filipino authorities confirmed that Manny is not required to pay double tax. If Manny paid U.S. taxes for fights and endorsements that occurred on U.S. soil, he is not required to pay double taxes in the Philippines.
“For each of Manny’s fights that occurred in the United States, including those in 2008 and 2009, Top Rank withheld 30% of Manny’s purses and paid those monies directly to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) via Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT). Top Rank has deposit confirmations for each payment. Top Rank has done the same for all U.S. endorsements it has facilitated on Manny’s behalf.
“Top Rank submitted copies of the EFT deposit acknowledgements to the Bureau of Internal Revenue (BIR) as proof of payment. The BIR received the documents but directed Manny to obtain “certified” documents directly from the IRS itself.
“As I am sure people appreciate, obtaining certified copies of documents from the IRS takes time. Manny made the formal request to the IRS and we have every expectation that the necessary documents will be furnished to the BIR very soon.”
Carlos Molina Staying Active in Chicago Community
IBF Junior Middleweight Champion “King” Carlos Molina is making good on his promise to be a “people’s champion”, as he continues to interact with the public in his beloved Chicago while waiting for his next big fight.
Last Friday at Curie High School on Chicago’s Southwest side, Molina and WBA # 6 heavyweight “Fast” Fres Oquendo were guests of honor at Curie’s annual Community Fall Festival. The pair signed autographs, posed for photos and spoke to young people about the importance of hard work.
“This is an amazing event, and it feels really good to give back to my neighborhood. I am grateful for the invite,” said Molina, who was raised and still lives minutes from Curie.
Meanwhile, Molina (22-5-2, 6 KOs) has been staying active in the gym while fielding offers and challenges from a variety of big names including former champs “Sugar” Shane Mosley and Saul “Canelo” Alvarez, as well as recent title winner Demetrius Andrade.
“I don’t care who it is,” said Molina. “I know everybody says that, but I mean it. I would like to bring boxing back to how it was in the old days with guys fighting all the time. Fighters fight and that’s what I want to do. I’m ready to go.”
Molina, a true Cinderella story in boxing, says he’d rather be a champion who defends his belt with regularity than a PPV star fighting once yearly.
“I want to be an old-school champion. I’ll fight anybody. I want to be recognized as the best in my division and I feel like I am ready to go out and get victories over the top guys and unify the belts. If Mosley or Alvarez or Andrade want to be next, I’ll be ready.”
Molina’s advisor, Luis DeCubas, says it really doesn’t matter who the opponent is for his guy. “Carlos is old-fashioned that way. He’ll be ready to go, no matter the date and they can put any junior middleweight in the world in front of him.”
Judah vs. Malignaggi Media Conference Call Quotes
I think it’s more for the fans. It’s hard to go back to your fans and say, ‘Oh man you’re not the best fighter in your borough.’ I think the motivation is from there. You fight guys from other cities and you rep your neighborhood, you rep your city real well. I get announced as from Brooklyn, N.Y., regardless of where I’ve lived in my career because it’s a sense of pride. Here, the other guy is announced from Brooklyn, N.Y., and it’s a sense of inner-pride within the city. You have to run into the other guy’s fans. I don’t run into Adrien Broner fans in New York or other people’s fans in New York. But I can run into Zab’s fans and that is a mini-motivator itself.
Like Paulie said, the job is the motivation for what we’re doing right now. I’m motivated by the opportunity. I’m motivated by the situation. Paulie is somebody that I’ve known for a long time. I’ve watched him, I’ve watched him grow and there have even been a lot of fights where I’ve supported him. So now, it’s kind of crazy to be going up against each other but it’s the sport that we chose and, like he said, once the bell rings and the leather starts flying I think that anybody would come to their senses.
Number one, I admire Paulie because he’s from Brooklyn. He stands up with that Brooklyn pride. He represent Brooklyn wherever he goes, he talks about it and keeps it fresh in people’s ears and eyes. Number two, he’s a fighter. I respect that every fighter has the heart and audacity to climb into the ring and take on competitive fights, so you’ve got to respect him as a human being. Yes, I do.
The admiration I have for Zab came from trying to follow in his footsteps coming up. I saw him accomplish things that I had the goal to accomplish. I watched Zab accomplish each and every one of them before me. It was an admiration and a motivator to see someone my city, from my borough accomplish these things and get some credibility and notoriety doing the same thing that I do. When somebody does it so close to home they automatically get that admiration when they’re older than you and you see them accomplishing those things and you kind of want to follow in their footsteps. That admiration comes from being that younger fighter looking up to someone like that.
David Rodriguez Honored Guest at Surefire Vapor Party
This past Friday at the Cosmopolitan Hotel in Las Vegas, Heavyweight contender David Rodriguez (36-0, 34 KOs) was the honored guest at the Surefire Vapor Luxury Mod Launch Party. Rodriguez was a big hit with those who were in attendance.
“This was a great party and the folks at Surefire Vapor treated me like a king,” said Rodriguez. “They have a very cool product in their luxury mod’s that were on display. I think their Onyx mod is a great alternative to smoking cigarettes. I’m all about promoting a healthier life style and Surefire Vapor has the perfect product for that cause.”
“David was a great guest at our party,” said Garry Rivera owner of Surefire Vapor. “Everyone who was in attendance had a blast with him. He has a great personality and we will all be rooting for him during his next fight. He has the charisma to become something special in and out of the ring. I was an honor to have him at our launch party.”
Filipino Boxer Bruno Escalante Gears up for Biggest Fight of Career
Super-Flyweight Bruno Escalante (10-1-1, 5KOs) is gearing up for the biggest fight of his career as he prepares to battle Michael Ruiz (9-3, 3 KOs) of Fresno California for the IBA Super-Flyweight championship. The 10-round bout is set to happen on December 7th at the Sports House in Escalante’s hometown of Redwood City California.
Escalante, a California resident by way of Cebu, Philippines, is fully prepared to give his fans a night to remember. With less than two weeks away, Escalante comments on his training camp and future plans if victorious.
“Training camp has been very difficult,” said Escalante. “Ruiz is a southpaw so I have to be super focused on circling the right way. I’m happy with the way training camp has been going. I’ve done everything I can do to be ready for this fight. Although it’s been a grueling camp, I happy with the way everything has been going.”
“I’ve never worked so hard to get ready for a fight. I know a win against Ruiz will get me closer to the bigger fights in the super-flyweight division. My sole focus is on defeating Ruiz by any means possible. I want to give my fans that’ll be in attendance a great show by winning my first world title.”
Herb Stone who manages Escalante feels his fighter is on his way to a victory as he stated, “Bruno has been working extremely hard in the gym. I know he’s giving it his all when he’s training and he’s doing well sparring the southpaws that we’ve brought into camp. Ruiz is no slouch but I feel Bruno is taking his career to new heights. This will be a great fight for the fans and I believe my fighter will come out on top.”
Bruno has been dealing with the devastation of Typhoon Haiyan. A native of the Philippines, Escalante sends out his prayers to the families dealing with the aftermath.
“I know it’s been difficult for all the families back home dealing with the Typhoon.” Escalante said. “I’m praying that everyone can donate whatever they can to help my people back home.”
Kovalev Determined to Stay on Course
When WBO light heavyweight champion Sergey Kovalev, 22-0-1, 20 KOs, takes on Ismayl Sillakh, 21-1, 17 KOs, Saturday in an HBO-televised, 12-round title fight, he very well may have his hands full with his very first title challenger. Sillakh is on a four-fight winning streak, three by KO, and poses a real threat to take the crown.
However, if the new champion can turn back Sillakh’s challenge, a number of exciting and lucrative fights lie before him. To keep his options open for these desirable opportunities, Kovalev must first get the win in Quebec City on Saturday night. If he can, “Krusher” will stay on track for some very good fights in his immediate future.
Heading up the card at the Colisee Pepsi, in Quebec City on Saturday, is WBC light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson, 22-1, 19 KOs, in a defense of his title against British Bomber, Tony Bellew, 20-1-1, 12 KOs. The fight is an excellent matchup of two of the division’s top boxers. However in addition to its own merits as a fight, the winner also represents a likely future opponent for Sergey Kovalev.
Ever since both Kovalev and Stevenson started scoring impressive knockout victories on HBO, fans have been clamoring for the two top dogs to face each other. Such a fight would certainly be a punch out and give fight fans everything they love in a title bout.
Main Events CEO, Kathy Duva siad, “Stevenson seems to be looking for excuses to avoid fighting Kovalev. The truth is, their opposition has been pretty equal, thus far. Both dethroned the sitting champion, Cloud and Campillo were both former champions who fought to a disputed decision, so they are pretty equal. By the way, Stevenson got KO’d by Boone–a guy that Sergey beat twice. So Stevenson’s argument that Kovalev must fight former champions really doesn’t hold a lot of water. I believe that they have fought an equal number of former champions”
Likewise, if Tony Bellew can pull the upset over Stevenson, a subsequent fight with Kovalev would also be a treat for fans.
Another possible future foe for Kovalev is the winner of the January 18th encounter between Lucian Bute and Jean Pascal in Montreal. That 12-round Canadian clash, also on HBO, is a terrific battle of former world champions, and two of the division’s many legitimate stars. Seeing either of them eventually take on Kovalev is an alternative dream fight for boxing fans that would be hotly anticipated.
Looking even further forward, Kovalev may one day be matched with pound-for-pound contender Andre Ward, who will likely move up to 175 pounds in the not so distant future. A Ward-Kovalev fight is a classic boxer-puncher pairing that would have fans drooling.
Heavyweights Invade Atlantic City on December 14th
A pair of hungry heavyweights are ready to do battle on the Atlantic City boardwalk on the next edition of NBC Sports Network’s FIGHT NIGHT, December 14th. Undefeated knockout artist Amir Mansour, 19-0, 14 KOs, takes on super-sized Kelvin Price, 14-1, 6 KOs, in an anticipated 10-round confrontation at the Superstar Theatre at Resorts International Hotel and Casino. The fight is expected to provide both heated heavyweight action and a clear cut answer as to which fighter has a future in the division.
Amir Mansour is a fight fan’s dream of a heavyweight boxer. The
trash-talking, left-handed, slugger is aggressive and mean inside the ring, and possesses the power to end any encounter with a single punch. Just ask his 14 knockout victims. Only one of them has made it out of the third round. But Mansour isn’t all punch. He’s also won both 10- and 12-round decisions in his career, proving that he can win a fight in any fashion. Against Price, Mansour will chase victory number 20, and the opportunity to begin his trek toward a title shot.
Kelvin Price is a six-foot, seven-inch, giant with more than just boxing skill to his credit. Price was an outstanding high school and college athlete. He played college basketball at the University of Louisiana Lafayette and then at Charlotte, before playing as a professional, both overseas and in the CBA and USBL at home. But it was boxing that became his calling. Price has defeated Tor Hamer, Arron Lyons, Danny Williams, and also faced rising star Deontay Wilder. He sees the fight with Amir Mansour as his ticket to the title. Price may be right, if he can effectively use his size, experience and superior athleticism on December 14th.
The 10-round co-feature bout is a thrilling light-heavyweight clash between two ambitious boxers with championship aspirations of their own. St. Louis southpaw, Ryan “The Irish Outlaw” Coyne, 21-1, 9 KOs, brings his crowd-pleasing style to Atlantic City for the first time, and is targeting Thompson as his entree to the world rankings. Lionell Thompson, 14-2, 9 KOs, of Buffalo, NY, has won two in a row since jumping in with Sergey Kovalev on short notice. Kovalev won the world title just three fights later, and Thompson would like nothing more than a second chance with the undefeated Russian puncher. Beating Coyne in Atlantic City, would be his first step in attaining that goal.
Complete Card Announced for Upcoming Broadway Boxing Event
As previously announced, DiBella Entertainment will be hosting their annual special-edition Broadway Boxing “Seasons Beatings” card on December 4, at the historic BB King Blues Club & Grill in midtown Manhattan.
Fighting in separate eight-round featured bouts will be fast-rising undefeated junior featherweight Luis Rosa (14-0, 6KO’s) and New York’s fan-favorite junior middleweight Boyd Melson (12-1-1, 4KO’s). Rosa is set to square off against Andre Wilson in their eight-round junior featherweight matchup, while Melson takes on Gundrick King (18-10, 11KO’s).
Also seeing action on the card will be two of the most promising prospects fighting under the GH3 promotional banner when both Antoine Douglas (10-0, 6KO’s) and Jerry Odom (5-0, 5KO’s) compete in separate six-round bouts. The bout on December 4 will already be the ninth of this year for Douglas, as he takes on his toughest opponent to date in fellow undefeated prospect Colby Colbert (4-0, 4KO’s). The bout between Douglas and Colbert is scheduled for six rounds in the middleweight division.
The super middleweight knockout artist Odom has yet to see the second round thus far as a professional and will be looking to keep his perfect knockout ratio intact when he takes on an opponent TBA in his six-round super middleweight contest.
In a special-attraction six-round super middleweight bout, Scotland’s Craig McEwan (22-3-1, 11KO’s) will be returning stateside for the first time in just under three years when he takes on an opponent TBA. McEwan began his career at a perfect 19-0 before suffering his first professional defeat at the hands of world title challenger and top-rated middleweight contender Andy Lee on HBO. McEwan is 3-1-0-1NC in his last five contests and is looking to get his name back into the middleweight mix in 2014.
Looking to make it a perfect 4-0 in 2013 will be Brooklyn light heavyweight Travis Peterkin (9-0, 4KO’s), as he takes on once-beaten Tylon Burris (5-1, 3KO’s) in their six-round light heavyweight matchup.
Returning to action just a little less than a month after turning pro will be blue-chip prospect Junior “Sugar Boy” Younan (1-0, 1KO). The “Boxing Prodigy”-as Younan was referred to in a feature piece done on him and his trainer/father by the New York Times when Younan was only 10 years old-was one of the most sought-after amateurs to come out of the New York boxing scene in many years. The 18-year-old was impressive in his debut, absolutely blitzing his opponent, dropping him just seconds into the fight before forcing the referee to halt the contest at 1:40 of the very first round. The same business team that handles Andre Ward, believed to be the second-best boxer in the world, also backs Younan. A world championship is anticipated in Younan’s bright future.
Fortuna and Rodriguez Score Victories in Mexico
Former WBA Interim Featherweight Champion Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna (23-0-1, 16 KOs), of the Dominican Republic, scored a third-round TKO over Mexico’s Manuel Castro (12-3, 11 KOs) last Saturday (November 16) on the undercard of the Arce vs. Carmona event at the Domo of San Luis Potosi, Mexico.
With Fortuna in complete control throughout, the referee finally stopped the fight after an unanswered barrage. Unfortunately, seconds before the action was halted, Fortuna was cut for nine stitches by a head butt.
Fortuna’s promoter, Sampson Lewkowicz, says his 24-year-old fighter has found new focus, working with new trainer Hector Bermudez in Troy, New York.
“Javier looked very sharp in his first fight with Bermudez. He is ready to challenge anyone in the world at 126 or 130. With his new training techniques, he can do either division easily.”
Also on the undercard that night, fellow Dominican super featherweight Braulio “El Chavo” Rodriguez moved to 15-0, 15 KOs when Mexico’s Oscar Arenas (26-8, 23 KOs) did not answer the bell for the fourth round.
It was truly a breakthrough performance for Rodriquez in Mexico, as he won over the Mexican fans with his showmanship and power-punching fists. Entering the ring to boos, he left to chants of “You are Mexican. You are Mexican.”
“Braulio Rodriguez is a future star in boxing,” continued Lewkowicz. “He has the kind of TV-friendly, unorthodox style that people appreciate, even ones who don’t know him yet. He won that crowd over with his unique ability.”
All Access: Broner s. Maidana
SHOWTIME Sports will premiere the latest chapter of its acclaimed documentary series ALL ACCESS: Broner vs. Maidana, replay classic fights from seminal moments in each fighter’s career and offer additional exclusive behind-the-scenes content-all in the buildup to Saturday, Dec. 14, when Adrien “The Problem” Broner and Marcos “El Chino” Maidana headline the highly anticipated four-fight SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® event in San Antonio, Texas.
ALL ACCESS: Broner vs. Maidana, a two-episode series, will premiere on Saturday, Dec. 7 at 7:30 p.m. ET/4:30 p.m. PT on SHOWTIME-immediately preceding the live SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast headlined by Zab Judah vs. Paulie Malignaggi-with replays on SHOWTIME, SHOWTIME EXTREME® and CBS Sports Network. Following its premiere, ALL ACCESS also will be available on SHOWTIME ON DEMAND® and SHOWTIME ANYTIME®.
ALL ACCESS: Broner vs. Maidana features intimate moments with the polarizing pugilist known as “The Problem,” and delves into the life of the dangerous “El Chino” Maidanaas the two elite welterweights prepare for the most significant fight of their respective careers.
Flashy, flamboyant and already a three-division champion at just 23-years-old, the undefeated WBA Welterweight World Champion Adrien Broner has been called the future of boxing. Now, in his first ALL ACCESS, Broner (27-0, 22 KO’s) shares an in-depth look into the life of “AB.” From backyard sparring sessions when he was just five years old, to candid moments with his family, Broner reveals a side of himself seldom seen by boxing fans. ALL ACCESS also takes viewers behind-the-scenes of Broner’s fledgling career as a hip-hop artist, and chronicles his transition from the celebrated life of entertainment to one of seclusion as he settles into training camp in preparation for Marcos Maidana.
Meanwhile in Oxnard, Calif., the fearless Argentine, Maidana (34-3, 31 KO’s) is focused on his next world title shot. With experience against the world’s best fighters, Maidana knows what to expect when he squares off with Broner. As such, Maidana is hard at work with renowned trainer Robert Garcia perfecting his aggressive style. All three of the pair’s fights together thus far have ended in knockout victories. But the stakes are high for this bout against the talented world champion. Go inside the highs and lows of Maidana’s biggest wins and most heartbreaking losses. And experience the unlikely relationship that has led Maidana to this resurgence and the brink of another world title. Watch as the former WBA Junior Welterweight Champion pushes his body to the limit for a chance to silence the brash Broner, a man whose very essence contradicts everything the humble Argentine stands for.