By Jackie Kallen
It will be a historic night in Detroit boxing history on Friday when two females join forces to promote a boxing show. The two blonds, who are from the burbs, are rolling the dice by putting on a show in the affluent West Bloomfield area. Mansions and Maseratis. Gucci, Louis and Kors. These two women are banking on the crowd to be enthusiastic and large.
Full disclosure: I am one of the two blonds. The other is Connie Shamoun, who has long been a fixture on the amateur boxing scene. She has sponsored and helped many of the kids in the Golden Gloves and Junior Olympics here in the Michigan area. She knows boxing. We have both lamented the lack of good promotions here in the metro Detroit area so we decided to try our hands at doing a better job.
Connie has a stronghold on the Chaldean community (Christian Iraqis) and they come out in throngs to support her undefeated son Zach Shamoun. He is the heartthrob of the Chaldean community and he had an impressive amateur career before turning pro. My boxer, Dorrell Van Horn, jr., is also undefeated and has a strong following in the Detroit area. He works at the Greektown Casino and he’s well known to the casino crowd. We put them at the top of the card and filled the undercard with top local draws and upcoming contenders.
Wanting to do something a little different, we set the posh Shenandoah Country Club as our venue and have turned the ballroom into a Vegas-style showroom. The ringside tables include a lavish dinner and even the general admission seats offer an unobstructed view of the ring. It is an intimate, first-class setting for a sport that has seldom been seen in this neck of the woods.
On the undercard we are featuring Mike Portillo, a popular, handsome welterweight with a 4-0 record. He is exciting to watch and always draws a solid crowd. So does another one of our undefeated featured fighters: James Ballard. This light heavyweight is a slick boxer and always puts on a good show. Darryl Humphey, an accomplished MMA fighter, is trying his hand at boxing, as is Anthony Fleming.
Nick Givhan, on our card, is a real local hero. With a 14-0 record, he’s about to burst on the national scene. He has stopped nine of his opponents and can box as well as punch. His fan club grows with each fight. Rounding out the card is Anthony Gallerani, a bantamweight, who lights up the room with his energy.
This will be a full night of entertainment. DJ Bam, who is a fixture on the Detroit fight scene, will be turning out the mixes and even the ring card girls were picked for their acumen in the ring. If this first stab at it goes well, we will be back in the saddle again in July and again in the early fall. We are hoping to make this a regular occurence for fight fans.