News: Tunney, Salcido, Ballogou, Kovacs, more
Gene Tunney Heads Up Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame Inductees
Dinner to honor six will be held November 28th at Mohegan Sun.
UNCASVILLE, CT – Gene Tunney, one of the most storied heavyweight champions in boxing history, heads up the 2008 class of inductees for the Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame.
Joining Tunney in the 2008 class are former professional fighters “Tiger” Ted Lowry, Larry Boardman and Bernie Reynolds. Being inducted for their extensive involvement in amateur boxing are Lou Bogash Jr. and Roland Pier.
The fourth annual CBHOF induction dinner will be held at 5:30pm on Friday evening, November 28th at Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT.
The CBHOF board of directors debated the notion of inducting Tunney into the Nutmeg State Hall of Fame for several years. Tunney’s boxing resume was hardly in question. He compiled an 81-1-3 record, beat Jack Dempsey twice, including the famed ‘Long Count” bout in 1927 and was Ring Magazine’s first ever “fighter of the year” in 1928. Tunney was inducted into the World Boxing Hall of Fame in 1980 and the International Boxing Hall of Fame in 1990.
There was a question of residency as Tunney was born in New York. As has been noted in Jack Cavanaugh’s book Tunney, however, “The Fighting Marine” moved to Stamford upon retiring in 1928. Tunney lived on 200 acres in an old colonial. He resided in Connecticut for fifty years until his death in 1978. He was active in the Connecticut political scene, often campaigning for Democratic candidates, and he once pondered running for senator in 1946. It is clear that Tunney considered Connecticut his home. Tunney, who was known for his intelligence and who often quoted Shakespeare, is buried at Long Ridge Union Cemetery in Stamford.
Ted Lowry twice fought Hall of Famer Rocky Marciano during his 12-year career, taking Marciano the distance in both bouts. Marciano later would acknowledge that Lowry was one of his most difficult opponents. Lowry also fought Reynolds three times while compiling a 67-67-10 record. Lowry won once, lost once and had a draw with Reynolds. Lowry would later become known for his extensive work with amateurs in Norwalk, where he resides. Lowry has received honors from several prominent political figures for his work with young fighters. During World War II, Lowry was a member of the all-black 555th Parachute Battalion, which became known as “The Triple Nickels.”
Larry Boardman was once the No. 2 lightweight in the world while compiling a 45-10-1 record. Boardman is known as the man who sent Hall of Famer Sandy Saddler into retirement. Saddler, who had legendary bouts with CBHOF inductee Willie Pep, lost a unanimous decision to Boardman in April of 1956. That was one of only sixteen losses Saddler had in 162 bouts. Boardman was born in Marlborough and lived most of his life in Connecticut before retiring to Florida.
Bernie Reynolds, a heavyweight from Fairfield, compiled an impressive professional record of 52-13-2. He started his career 12- 0 and won twenty-seven of his first twenty-eight bouts. He fought some of the toughest heavyweights of his era, including Rocky Marciano and Ezzard Charles, both of whom were world champions.
Lou Bogash Jr has long been a popular figure in Connecticut because of his work as a judge, referee and heading up the state’s amateur organization for several years. Bogash was a judge for the first Marlon Starling-Donald Curry World Welterweight title bout in 1982. It was a controversial split decision that went Curry’s way, but Bogash scored the fight for Starling, also a CBHOF inductee. Bogash’s father Lou Sr. was inducted into the CBHOF in 2006. The induction of Lou Jr. will give the CBHOF its first father-son tandem.
Roland Pier has been involved in amateur boxing in the New London area for more than sixty years. Pier, who will be seventy-nine in October, has long been associated with the Whaling City Boxing Club and is known to be an ambassador for the sport.
Ticket information for the November 28th induction dinner may be obtained by calling Mike Murtha at Mohegan Sun at 860.862.7586 or 860.862.7583 or by calling Sherman Cain at the Manchester Journal Inquirer at 1.800.237.3606 (ext. 321).
For more information on this and other great events at Mohegan Sun, visit mohegansun.com. For information on this week’s schedule, call the Entertainment and Special Events hotline at 1.888.226.7711, ext. 27163.
SALCIDO MAKES HIS MOVE ON SEPTEMBER 26th UNBEATEN LIGHTWEIGHT PROSPECT TO FACE VICENTE ESCOBEDO IN CROSSROADS BOUT
ORANGE, SEPTEMBER 18 – He’s survived the ups and downs of the fight game and is still standing. Unbeaten lightweight prospect Dominic Salcido is ready to make his move on the 135-pound top ten, and the first man on his path is 2004 US Olympian Vicente Escobedo. On Friday, September 26th, at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa in Cabazon, California, these two highly-regarded fighters will meet and only one will move forward in boxing’s most talent-rich division.
Salcido plans on being the last man standing.
“This is a great opportunity for me, not only to beat a fighter everybody knows in Vicente Escobedo, but to do it on national television as well,” said the 16-0 Salcido. “I’ve waited a long time for a shot like this, and I’m not about to let it slip away.”
Salcido vs Escobedo is presented by Golden Boy Promotions, in association with Thompson Boxing Promotions, and will air live on Telefutura’s ‘Solo Boxeo’ beginning at 9pm ET / PT.
Tickets can be purchased at the Morongo Casino Resort & Spa Box Office at (951) 755-5391 or online at www.ticketmaster.com.
Rialto, California’s Salcido (16-0, 8 KOs), a fighter known for his blazing speed and footwork, was a highly touted amateur star, but he saw his early pro career stall due to a hand injury. Fully healed, the 24-year old fought an amazing seven times in 2007 without a defeat (winning three of those bouts by knockout), and he is rapidly making up for lost time, earning a spot among one of the fight game’s top young prospects along the way. Most recently, Salcido scored a dominating eight round decision win over veteran Luis Arceo.
Hard-hitting heavyweight hope Derek Chisora has promised to breath new life into the “boring” domestic heavyweight division.
‘Del Boy’ is out in action again next Friday night at Bethnal Green’s York Hall in a 10 round International contest, and his immediate aim is to climb to the top of the British rankings.
His big date in front of the Sky television cameras follows an explosive KO win over American Sean McLean in London less than a week ago on Frank Warren’s big DebRA charity show.
And he reckons that he is the man to inject some interest into a domestic scene that has been dominated by Danny Williams, Matt Skelton, Michael Sprott and Audley Harrison for years.
“I watched Audley Harrison’s fight against George Arias the other week and it was dire,” said 24-year-old Chisora, who lives in Finchley, North London.
“The public paid good money to watch him fight and all he did was send them to sleep.
“I even dropped off watching the fight at home on television.
“In fact, the whole domestic scene has got boring, and I’m the man to turn things around.
“People want excitement when they watch boxing, and when they watch heavyweight boxing they want excitement and knock outs, and that is what you are going to get with me.
“I can punch, I can fight and I like to entertain, and I’m just what the heavyweights need right now. I promise that I’ll make things interesting again.”
Despite having had just six fights, Chisora is already in the British top 10, mainly thanks to an outstanding win over Sam Sexton earlier this year.
That win looks even better following Sexton’s victory in last weekend’s Prizefighter tournament.
“Sexton is a good fighter, but he’s not great against someone who can move, and that’s why I beat him,” said Chisora, who marched to the ABA title in 2005. “I can brawl but I can box as well, and that’s why the public will want to watch me.”
Chisora is already catching the eye of respected boxing writers. The Observer’s Kevin Mitchell, who attended the DebRA show and watched Chisora in action, said in his column last Sunday: “If you want to keep an eye out for an exciting prospect in the heavyweight division, you could do worse than follow the fortunes of Derek ‘Del Boy’ Chisora, of Finchley, the former ABA Champion who took his pro career record to six straight wins by accounting for a tall American called Sean McLean.”
“It’s great that the media are starting to recognise me, ” He added. “It gives me a big boost when I read something like that but I know it only takes one punch to wreck my dreams so I just try to keep focused, train hard and keep my feet on the ground.”
TWO BIG TITLE MATCHES HEADLINE A PACKED NIGHT OF BOXING ON FRIDAY SEPTEMBER 26TH AT THE NATIONAL GUARD ARMORY IN NORTHEAST PHILADELPHIA
PHILADELPHIA (SEPTEMBER 18, 2008)—On Friday night, September 26th a full night of boxing will be highlighted by two title-matches which includes Light Heavyweight, Yusaf Mack looking to inch closer to a world title when he takes on Omar Pittman in a ten round bout for both the Pennsylvania State title and the NABA championship.
In the co-feature, Derek “Pooh” Ennis and Troy Browning will square off for the vacant Pennsylvania Jr. Middleweight title over ten rounds.
Mack, 25-2-2 with fifteen knockouts is looking to continue the momentum he has accumulated after consecutive victories which includes his previous start which was a terrific performance when he scored a unanimous decision over Daniel Judah.
Mack, of Philadelphia is currently ranked number nine by the WBA, and a victory over Pittman could lead to a world title fight.
Pittman has a record of 15-4-1 with eight knockouts and is known throughout Philadelphia as one of the toughest fighters in the City.
Ennis has a record of 15-2-1 with twelve big wins coming by knockouts.
The Philadelphia native has been very impressive as he has racked up three straight knockout wins.
Despite being forty years-old, Browning is an upset specialist and has been in with the better competition and defeated then big-time prospect, Julio Garcia (40-2).
Browning, of Willingboro, New Jersey is 20-2-1 with eight knockouts and is looking to get back in the win column after dropping decisions to Delvin Rodriguez (21-2-1) and Pawel Wolak (20-0).
The card which is promoted by Joey Eye Boxing will feature a six bout undercard:
In a four round Featherweight bout, Jules Blackwell (7-1-2, 2 KO’s) of Phoenixville, PA will look to rebound from his first defeat when he takes Phillip Adyaka (0-1) of Miami, FL
The big boys will get it on as local favorite, Anthony Gatt (6-1-1, 4 KO’s) of nearby West Chester, PA will battle Jonathan Felton (5-11, 5 KO’s) of Stafford, VA
In another Heavyweight affair, Tyyab Beale (0-1) of Jersey City, NJ takes on Philadelphian, Lamont Barnes (1-1, 1 KO).
Undefeated Super Featherweight, Coy Evans (2-0-1) of Philadelphia takes on an opponent to be named
John Goldwire (1-0) of Philadelphia will fight Phillip Lars (2-2, 2 KO’s) of Shreveport, LA in a four round Welterweight bout.
Joel De La Paz (1-0) of Atlantic City, NJ will tangle with Ryan Hord (0-2) of West Plains, MO in a four round Super Middleweight scrap.
Tickets prices for this great night of boxing are $100 (VIP); $50 (Ringside); $40 for General Admission and be purchased at:
Earthquake Predicted on Saturday – Mark ‘Oaktree’ Brown takes on Tony Grano
The Eastern seaboard seismic centers are going to have to shut down this coming Saturday when Salem, New Jersey’s ‘Mr Entertainment’ himself, Mark ‘Oaktree’ Brown 13-1 (6KOs), locks horns with Hebron, Connecticut’s super battler, Tony Grano 14-0-1 (12KOs), in an eight round heavyweight battle of the titans at the Final Forum Promotions event at the Harbor Yard Arena in Bridgeport, Connecticut, on Saturday 27th September 2008.
Brown, who is determined to make his mark in the heavyweight division, faces a hard opponent in Grano, who has yet to lose a fight and a very healthy knockout ratio. To ensure that he has the upper hand in this battle, Brown, has been undertaking his secretive ‘toughman’ regime each morning as well as his normal gym training and sparring sessions in the afternoons.
Taking a short break from training, the ever effervescent Brown clearly relishes the challenge as he said “I’m going to his (Grano) backyard, Iknow that I’ll have to knock him out to win. I’m training harder than ever. He just ain’t going to know what hit him. I’m strong, stronger than he realizes. My special training is going to give me an advantage. It’s all power and strength stuff. The fans are going to love me, I’m going to really entertain them. I’m going to be fast and furious. Everyone thought that Ralph (‘Wild Wild’ West) was going to knock me out as he is so big and strong. They were wrong he didn’t last two rounds. I’m not just a puncher, I can box. I entertain, I play with them before knocking them out. He may have a slightly better record than me now, but I’ll have the better record by time this fight is over.”
The headline fight of the night will feature Norwalk, Connecticut’s,‘Marvelous’ Tarvis Simms 22-0-1 (11KOs), in a 10 round super middleweight clash with Rochester New York’s, Robert ‘Push Up’ Frazier 31-9-4 (15KO’s).
Ever bubbly, Brown, just had to get the last word in “If you want to be really entertained come down and see me. You’ll be cheering, OAKTREE, OAKTREE, OAKTREE, just like everyone else. I’ll be on fire. I’ll be fast and furious. I’ll be the star. Don’t forget, Saturday September 27th at Harbor Yard Arena, Bridgeport. I will entertain you, that’s why they calle Mr Entertainment.”
BURNS HEADLINES YORK HALL
Scottish slickster Ricky Burns will aim to land the Commonwealth super-featherweight title next Friday when he tackles Ghana’s Osumana Akaba at the York Hall.
Burns, 25, will look to win a title previously held by fellow countryman Alex Arthur – and has promised an explosive display in front of the Sky television cameras.
Beaten just twice in 25 fights, the Coatbridge star knows that he will have to be at his best against a man who comes from the boxing hot-bed of Accra.
“I’ve been waiting for a championship fight for the last year, and I’m raring to go,” said Burns.
“I’ve had a look at Akaba’s record and he looks like a really tough opponent, so I know I might have to go into the trenches.
“It’s every fighter’s dream to get a title chance at the home of boxing, and I don’t think anyone will go home disappointed with my display. ”
Only Alex Arthur and Carl Johanneson have got the better of Burns, and he says he has improved dramatically since those two losses, with new trainer Billy Nelson increasing his punching power.
“The Arthur and Johanneson fights were great ones to learn from,” said Burns. “I’m twice as good as when I lost to Arthur, and I pushed him all the way.
“But the man I want is British champion Kevin Mitchell. Once I’ve got rid of Akaba I’ll turn my attention to Mitchell. He’s a great fighter but I’ll be too quick and skilful for him.”
Akaba, a 28-year-old southpaw, has stopped eight of his 11 victims, and recently decisioned Brit-slayer Tshifhiwa Munyai in Dagenham, winning over eight.
Chief support sees Derek Chisora take on Lee Swaby at heavyweight, while Eddie Corcoran, Grant Skehill, Vinnie Mitchell and Ryan Walsh also feature.
Jaffa Ballogou Ready to Return with a Bang Vs Manu Ntoh
Former WBC International Super Middleweight Champion Jaffa “The African Assassin” Ballogou 45-6 (39 KO’s) is anxiously awaiting his return to the ring this upcoming Tuesday, as he will challenge tough veteran Manu Ntoh 17-14-1 (10 KO’s). Ballogou has been idle since June 2006 due to promotional and managerial issues, as well as difficulty finding an opponent willing to step into the squared circle with him.
The Ballogou vs Ntoh bout is taking place on a card dubbed as “Knockout Poverty”, which is a black tie event, featuring all African fighters, with the proceeds going toward helping to stop poverty in Africa. Aside from being ecstatic to fight, Ballogou is honored to be affiliated with the event.
“I am very excited to be on this card”, said Ballogou. “It’s for a great cause and will benefit Africa. There is too much poverty there, something must be done about it and this is a great start. I am happy that (promoter) Bob Duffy offered me the opportunity to fight on this card and September 23rd will be a great night of boxing and entertainment”, said the power punching Togo, West Africa native.
Tickets can be ordered by going to www.allforafrica.org.
Long Island heavyweight turf war
Madison vs. McKnight
Pawel Wolak headlines “Havoc At The Hilton,” Sept. 26 at Huntington Hilton Hotel
NEW YORK CITY (September 19, 2008) – Long Island bragging rights will be on the line September 26, when New York State heavyweight champion Darrell Madison squares off against Elfair “The Wyandanch Warrior” McKnight, in the six-round co-feature on “Havoc At The Hilton.”
Polish power punching light middleweight Pawel “Raging Bull” Wolak (21-1, 14 KOs) headlines “Havoc At The Hilton,” promoted by Bob Duffy’s Ring Promotions, against former WBF title challenger Chad Greenleaf (10-10-1, 4 KOs) at the Huntington Hilton Hotel. Pro Active Boxing, Co. is one of the sponsors.
Madison (10-1, 3 KOs), three-time New York Golden Gloves champion fighting out of Central Islip, rides a nine-fight win streak into his turf war showdown against four-time New York Golden Gloves titlist McKnight (2-7-2), who hails from Wyandanch.
“It’s a hometown rivalry,” Madison describes his fight against McKnight. “He was the man – four-time Golden Gloves champion — when I was in the amateur. I used to tell Elfair that someday I was going to beat him and he’d say he’d kill me. I’m going to take the Long Island heavyweight torch from him on September 26th. We know each other and owe this fight to each other. He is one very tough guy who fought Yacoubou Moutakilou, two-time National amateur champion, almost an Olympian, in his sixth pro fight and Kevin Johnson in his seventh. He’s no slouch.”
Madison has been one of Guillermo Jones’ sparring partners at Don King’s training camp in Ohio. “Camp has been real good,” Madison explained. “Guillermo has a fight September 27 in Germany. I’ve been improving my punching co-ordination, ring generalship and patience as I step-up each fight. In a 1 ½-2 years, I hope to be mentioned in the top 10. I want more power into my shots and improve by knockout ratio. I want to show people that I’m the complete package – I can box and punch.”
On the undercard, hometown Plainview favorite welterweight Tommy “The Razor” Raione (11-1, 3 KOs) faces Henry White, Jr. (2-2-1, 2 KOs) in a six-round bout. Brooklyn light heavyweight Will Rosinsky (1-0, 1 KO), three-time U.S. National Golden Gloves champion, will be showcased in a four-rounder against upset-minded Michael “The Snake” Ciccone (1-4).
In a four-round heavyweight match, Egyptian-born Ahmed Samir (2-0) takes on tough Andrew “Came To Fight” Hutchinson (2-9-2). Samir was 198-13 as an amateur, 85-10 in international matches, including gold-medal performances in the 2007 All-African Games, 2007 Arab Championships and 2006 Jordan International Championships. Ahmed came to the U.S. to participate in the 2007 World Amateur Championships, but he abandoned the Egyptian national Team to turn pro and start a new life in Brooklyn.
Also on the undercard in four-round bouts, Patchogue welterweight Leon Green (4-1, 1 KO) meets Rakeem Carter (0-4), of Albany; welterweight Chris Algeri (3-0, 2 KOs) fights fellow New Yorker Clarence Smith (0-1); Brooklyn light welterweight Pablo Tejeda (2-8-1) returns against Broderick Antoine (3-6-1, 2 KOs), of Troy (NY); Albany middleweight Andy Mejias (2-0, 1 KO) tangles with Karl Desravines (1-0), of Brooklyn .
Light middleweight Lambros Karaolides, fighting out of Astoria Queens, is scheduled to make his pro debut against TBA. All bouts and fighters are subject to change.
Tickets are priced at $100.00 (Golden Ringside), $75.00 (Ringside) and $40.00 (General Admission). VIP tables of 10 are $1500. To purchase tickets go to www.ringpromotions.com or call 516.313.2304. Doors open at 6:30 PM, first bout at 7:30 PM.
KOVACS SETS OUT TO PROVE HE’S WORLD CLASS
Shunned by the European Boxing Union (EBU) (see http://www.fight-production.com/articles/article232.htm), despite being considered a top-ranked superwelterweight by all independent computer ratings, Hungarian class-act Attila ‘The Viper’ Kovacs, 24-1 (17 KO’s), has now set out to prove he’s world class when he dares to face Armenian Gennady Martirosyan, 13-1 (4 KO’s), in the unfriendly confines of Vyborg, Russia on October 4.
Martirosyan lives in near-by St. Petersburg and just like with Kovacs, his sole professional loss came so early in his career, that it can be considered meaningless by now. Kovacs, in fact, is unbeaten in six years. The 34-year-old Hungarian from Györ had signed with Fight Production late last year and was kept active in low-profile fights in cooperation with Profibox Promotion, the promotional outfit of Hungarian heavyweight champion and Fight Production partner Zoltan Petranyi. “I’m impressed how patiently Attila has waited for this chance,” said German manager Olaf Schroeder, “like a true professional he just went on with it and when we proposed Martirosyan, Attila just said ‘Bring him on!’ without even asking about the money. I believe he has too much all-around for Martirosyan to handle.”
Experience indeed seems Kovacs’ biggest asset when he travels to Russia. Whereas Martirosyan has yet to feature in his first fight for a title, ‘The Viper’ is a veteran of six (all victorious!) championship bouts of sorts. Interestingly, the Armenian’s last outing, in July, saw him win an 8-round decision over Brit Steve Conway – the same man Kovacs outpointed over 12 rounds for the IBO ‘world’ title two years earlier. Sandwiched in between those defeats were two further losses for Conway: Prospect Grzegorz Proksa gained a 6-round verdict and Christophe Canclaux stopped him in three, so Conway clearly wasn’t the same man when he faced Martirosyan. Kovacs’ biggest-name victim probably was former European champion Mamadou Thiam, whom he stopped in seven exciting rounds in 2005.
The clash is scheduled for 10 rounds, with both fighters allowed to come in on the middleweight limit, so neither should have to suffer making weight. In a refreshing back-to-old-times style, Kovacs vs Martirosyan shares top billing with another 10-rounder which sees Ali Ismailov taking on American Max Alexander.