By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of July 28th to August 4th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Fox Sports Telecasts Premier Boxing Champions Under Multi Year Deal
FOX Sports today announced that it has reached a multi-year, multi-platform agreement to telecast Premier Boxing Champions (PBC), under which it will be the exclusive boxing program for FOX Sports 1, with content also going to FOX Deportes, bringing the sport’s best and brightest stars to both networks. The announcement was made by David Nathanson, FOX Sports Head of Business Operations.
FOX Sports 1 premieres TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS, a new, live primetime boxing series on Tuesday, Sept. 8 (9:00 PM ET), which continues for a total of 21 shows through the end of June, 2016. The fights are simulcast on FOX Deportes, under a series name to be determined soon.
“We’ve been invested in boxing as a cornerstone property since launching FOX Sports 1,” says Nathanson. “Premier Boxing Champions delivers high-profile, high-quality programing that is breaking viewership records in the boxing space. There is no question that this deal makes FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes true destinations for boxing fans.”
Hosting TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS is Brian Kenny, a veteran boxing announcer currently serving as an MLB Network studio host, a position he continues to hold. Kenny formerly anchored ESPN 2’s Friday Night Fights.
“I’m so excited to be working on FOX Sports 1 on this new PBC series,” says Kenny. “We’re looking forward to making boxing even more accessible to the fans, providing world class match-ups and putting the spotlight on fighters who deserve to be seen by both hardcore and mainstream fans. We will be real with the audience, show them respect and give them the landscape of the boxing world.”
The first televised card will feature a super welterweight bout between Austin “No Doubt” Trout (29-2) and Joey Hernandez (24-3) and a co main event between junior featherweights Jorge Lara (27-0-1) and Jesus Rojas (21-1).
Golovkin vs. Lemieux Live on Pay-Per-View
As expected, the heavily rumored Golovkin vs. Lemieux pay per view fight was officially announced recently and it has been set for October 17th at Madison Square Garden live on HBO Pay Per View. Golovkin (33-0) currently holds the WBA, IBO and WBC “Interim” Middleweight Championships and David Lemieux (34-2) holds the IBF Middleweight Championship.
“I’m very excited to face David Lemieux to prove who is #1 in the middleweight division,” said Gennady Golovkin. “I look forward to fighting again at Madison Square Garden and putting on another Big Drama Show for my fans in New York City.”
“I’ve said that I don’t care who I fight, so long as they are the best, and Golovkin is the best out there in the middleweight division,” David Lemieux said. “GGG may be the most feared man in boxing, but after October 17th, there will be a new feared man in the middleweight division. Two very powerful punchers are coming into the ring. There will be blood; there will be fireworks, and I am confident I will emerge victorious.
“Gennady has wanted to unify the titles in the middleweight division since winning the WBA title in 2010,” said Tom Loeffler, Managing Director of K2 Promotions. “This is one of the most highly anticipated fights in boxing between the two biggest punchers in the middleweight division.”
“Since Gennady’s last fight on May 16, media and fans have been asking daily about his next fight and we are happy to announce this middleweight unification on boxing’s biggest stage. Gennady loves fighting at Madison Square Garden, it will be his fourth appearance there and we’re honored to work with their outstanding team, Golden Boy Promotions and HBO Pay-Per-View on this extraordinary event.”
“When Golden Boy Promotions talks about making the best fights for the fans, Lemieux Vs. Golovkin is exactly what we’re talking about,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “These are two guys at the top of their games; in their primes; with enormous knockout power than can end a fight in an instant. Instead of ducking each other, they have chosen to collide. Buckle up. October 17th is going to be quite a ride.”
Soto vs. Orozco Set as Co-Main Event for Matthysse vs. Postol
Former three division world champion Humberto Soto (65-8-2) will take on undefeated Antonio Orozco (22-0) in a 10 round super lightweight showdown as the co-main event for Lucas Matthysse vs. Viktor Postol on Saturday, October 3rd from the StubHub Center on HBO’s Boxing After Dark.
The main event of the evening will be between Lucas Matthysse (37-3) and Viktor Postol (27-0) for the vacant WBC Super Lightweight World Championship. Tickets can be purchased online at axs.com.
“I feel very excited for my next fight; they always say third time is the charm and after two cancelled fights I’m getting anxious for my return to the ring,” said Humberto Soto. “I’m used to fighting often, but now it’s been almost a year without fighting and as everyone knows, I couldn’t fight in Houston [on May 9] since my opponent was overweight. Then, the opportunity to fight for a new world title and an issue with my knee forced me to decline the fight. I’ve felt frustrated because I had been training really hard.”
Soto continued, “Now, we have Antonio Orozco. I haven’t seen much of his fights, but from what I’ve heard I know he’s very dedicated and holds a winning mentality. Orozco is young, undefeated, and he has to show everyone how far he wants to get in this sport. I’m his test, but I have the experience, and I have to make a statement as to why I’ve been a three-time world champion. I’ll show that I’m ready for this opportunity and for another world title.”
“I’m excited for the fight on October 3 against Humberto Soto,” said Antonio Orozco. “When you put two fighters of Mexican descent at StubHub Center in Southern California you know there will be a great fight. Thanks to Frank Espinoza, Oscar De La Hoya, Golden Boy Promotions and HBO for providing me with this platform. This will be a fan friendly fight.”
Artur Szpilka Headlines Undercard for Tarver vs. Cunningham
Polish contenders Artur Szpilka (19-1), Maciej Sulecki (20-0), and Kamil Laszczyk (20-0) will highlight the undercard action at Prudential Center, in Newark, New Jersey on Friday, August 14th.
The televised main event of the evening on Spike will feature Antonio “Magic Man” Tarver (31-6) facing Philadelphia’s Steve “USS” Cunningham (28-7) in a twelve round heavyweight bout. Cruiserweight champion Marco Huck (38-2-1) will defend his title against Polish contender Krzyzstof Glowacki (24-0) in the co-feature of the evening.
Szpilka is currently set to face Yasmany Consuegra (17-1) of Cuba and Laszczyk is set to face the unbeaten Dominican Queens resident Oscauris Frias (16-0).
Other undercard fighters include Travis Kauffman (28-1), Jarret Hurd (15-0), Michael Seals (19-0), and Luis Rosa (20-0).
WBO Strips Andrade, Andrade’s Promoters Sue Roc Nation Sports
Demetrius Andrade was the WBO Junior Middleweight Title holder, but on Friday he was officially stripped of his title. Andrade has not fought in over 14 months and his promotional team has a pending lawsuit with Roc Nation Sports for over eight figures.
The WBO stated, in their ruling, while considering the pending lawsuit against Roc Nation Sports, that “We are not moved to consider the reasons contained therein to constitute ‘just cause’ for Mr. Andrade’s failure to comply with our regulations of world championship contests…The WBO has been more than lenient with Mr. Andrade, but he has clearly been inactive” and “Andrade has defended his title only once—against Brian Rose—since first obtaining it 19 months ago.”
Banner Promotions is suing Jay Z’s Roc Nation Sports for 20 million plus. They are alleging that Roc Nation Sports interfered with their exclusive promotional contract with Andrade by promising to sign him after negotiating a buyout of his deal with Banner Promotions and Star Boxing, and alleging that they promised to pay Andrade $500,000 if he refused to participate in a bout on Showtime with Charlo.
Zab Judah Signs with Greg Cohen Promotions
Greg Cohen Promotions has announced the signing of five-time world champion and former undisputed World Welterweight Champion Zab Judah (42-9) to a co-promotional agreement, along with Judah’s Super Judah Promotions.
Judah will compete in the super lightweight division and his first appearance will be in September on a GCP televised card.
“I am overjoyed to be adding a superstar of Zab’s caliber to my promotional roster,” said Greg Cohen. “Zab has been in with every great fighter of this era and beaten many of them. He is a Brooklyn boxing legend and still a force to be reckoned with at 140 lbs.”
“Super Judah Promotions is looking forward to working with such a reputable and time-tested promoter in Greg Cohen and the Greg Cohen Promotions team, said Bill Halkias V.P. of Super Judah Promotions. “Zab is physically and mentally stronger than I have ever seen him. He wants to win a sixth world title for his fans. They won’t be disappointed.”
Judah’s next opponent will be announced soon
Thomas “Cornflake” LaManna Looks to Get Back in Win Column
On Friday night at Ballys Atlantic City, middleweight Thomas “Cornflake” LaManna (16-1) will be back in action in a rematch against Josh Robertson in an eight round bout.
The bout will be part of the off-tv portion of a ShoBox televised tripleheader that will feature middleweight Levgen Khytrov taking on Nick Brinson.
LaManna was last seen being stopped in the sixth round on ShoBox to the undefeated Antoine Douglas.
“Training has been great. By the time I get in the ring on Friday, I would have completed a 10 week training camp. I started camp in New York and I was supposed to fight on July 25. That show got postponed and I was fortunate enough to land on this show,” said LaManna.
LaManna has been working on the things he needed to tighten up after his loss to Douglas.
“I have been working on keeping my composure and sticking to my gameplan. I feel like I am getting stronger. I am still just 23 years-old and despite my last fight, my best boxing is still ahead of me.”