Top rated Middleweight contender fights ex-champ Marquez on Showtime
NEW YORK CITY (June 17, 2008) – Unbeaten Dominican middleweight sensation Giovanni “Chico Malo” Lorenzo has planned a breakout party Saturday night when he fights former world champion Raul “El Diamente” Marquez in the 12-round co-feature on Showtime Championship Boxing, live from Seminole Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Hollywood, Florida.
The show is headlined by a super middleweight bout between IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham and Edison Miranda, while Lorenzo-Marquez is an IBF eliminator. “Giovanni’s fight with Marquez is a voluntary IBF eliminator that we took because ‘Gio’ has been criticized for having fought light opposition,” Lorenzo’s co-manager Rich Ryan explained, “so we thought it was a good move to take the Marquez fight and have Giovanni showcased on Showtime. ‘Gio’ is Abraham’s mandatory and if they both win, they’ll build excitement together Saturday night in separate fights, on the same card, for their proposed title bout.”
Lorenzo (26-0, 18 KOs), who represented his native Dominican Republic in the 2000 Olympics, after posting a 247-16 amateur record with 15 gold medals in International competition, now lives in the Washington Heights section of New York City. He is rated No. 1 by the WBC, No. 4 by the IBF (1 and 2 are unrated), No. 8 and No. 9 by the WBO and WBA, respectively, and No. 10 by The Ring.
“I’ve trained very hard for this fight and I’m looking forward to fighting such a worthy opponent like Marquez,” Lorenzo said. “He is a former world champion who will bring out the best in me. People will see that I am a future champion. I’m not thinking ahead to Abraham at all. My sole focus is Marquez; once I knock off Marquez then we can talk about Abraham. I know it will be a tough fight but I grew up as a kid dreaming that one day I would get a chance to fight Marquez. Now that dream is going to become reality and for a kid from Jerringa Dominican Republic it doesn’t get better than that.’
Unquestionably a step-up in competition for the 27-year-old Lorenzo, the still dangerous southpaw Marquez (40-3-1, 29 KOs), 1992 U.S. Olympian, hopes to derail his
Dominican opponent’s plans. Marquez captured the IBF light middleweight title in 1997 and he twice successfully defended his belt. His only career losses have been to world champions Jermain Taylor, Fernando Vargas, and “Yori Boy” Campas. Marquez retired in 2004 for two years, when he became a commentator for HBO Latino, but he returned to the ring and has won five of six bouts with a draw.
Lorenzo, whose most notable win to date was a seventh-round TKO of Archak TerMeliksetian (15-2) in 2006, is arguably one of the underrated fighters in the world today. Saturday night the world will learn about this prize-fighting secret from the Dominican Republic.