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George Foreman Winning a Title at 45 Influenced Others

By: Ken Hissner

On November 5th in 1994 at the MGM Grand, Grand Garden Arena, in Las Vegas, Nevada, “Big” George Foreman regained the IBF and WBA Heavyweight title knocking out Michael Moorer in the 10th round. He was behind on point from the judges with scores of 88-83 twice and 86-85. Shortly after the fight Foreman was stripped of the WBA title for refusing to fight Tony Tucker.

One of the fighters Foreman influenced most was now 44 year old Shannon “Cannon” Briggs, 29-1, who was the last opponent in Foreman’s 81 fight career. It was thought Foreman was lucky to get by Germany’s Axel Schulz, 21-1-1, in April of 1995 and most felt he deserved the decision over Briggs losing 117-113, 116-112 and 114-114.

Briggs last fought on November 4th 2016 improving his record to 60-6-1 (53). He has been 9-0 since turning 40. He chased Wladimir “Dr. Steelhammer” Klitschko then champion for years. He won the WBO title on November 4th 2006 stopping Siarhei “White Wolf” Liakhovich. Liakkhovich in his last bout at 42 in October of 2017 stopped Ramon “Pantera” Olivas, 14-7, of Sonora, Mexico, in the 3rd round of a scheduled 6, in Sonora, Mexico.

Former WBC Heavyweight champion Oliver “The Atomic Bull” McCall, 57-14 (37), at 49 lost his last fight in April of 2014 to Marcin “Rex” Rekowski, 13-1, over 10 rounds in Poland, in a rematch that McCall won in February. He was 15-7 after the age of 40. He won the title in September of 1994.

Fres “The Big O” Oquendo, 37-8 (24), at 45 is scheduled to fight for the WBA World title on September 29th at Cologne, Germany, when he meets champion Manuel Charr, 31-4 (17), though Oquendo hasn’t fought in four years. He lost a disputed decision to Chris Byrd in September of 2003 for his IBF World title.

Like Oquendo 45 year-old southpaw Amir “Hardcore” Mansour, 23-2-1 (16), is still chasing a title opportunity. He has won 7 minor titles and has been in the world ratings. His last fight was in November 2017 ending in a NC3 over a clash of heads against Russia’s Sergey Kuzmin, 11-0, in Moscow.

Billy “Bronco” Wright, 52-4 (43), of Las Vegas, last fought in January of 2016 at the age of 51. He hadn’t lost since 1998 to Tony Tucker. He won his last 22 fights since then of which 9 of his last 11 fights were in Bolivia. He won the WBC FECARBOX, WBO Latino and interim PABA titles.

All of these heavyweights felt they could match what George Foreman did at age 45 winning the heavyweight title.

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Amir Khan Blasts Lo Greco in First Round

By: Eric Lunger

It was a sold-out Echo Arena in Liverpool, UK, that saw the return of former Super Lightweight Champion Amir Khan to the ring after an almost two-year hiatus from the sport. For Khan (31-4, 19 KO’s) there were two main questions to be answered. First, how much did the time off diminish his hand-speed and timing? Second, what effect (if any) did the scary Alvarez knock out have on the Bolton, UK, native?

Unfortunately, the bout didn’t really last long enough to get definitive answers to those questions. In the first round, Lo Greco came out fighting behind an awkward high, pawing jab. Almost immediately, Khan blasted an overhand right straight past Lo Greco’s defense, and the Canadian went down hard. Lo Greco got back to his feet, smiling as though he couldn’t believe he could be so careless. But Khan pounced — exhibiting his hand speed of old — and Lo Greco had no answers for Khan’s sudden onslaught. That was it, Khan wins by TKO in the first round.

In the post-fight interview, Khan acknowledged the supportive fans: “I was a little nervous, coming back to a full Liverpool crowd, but guess what: I’m back! Khan is back!” He went on to promise that he would continue to fight in the UK, “I want to be a world champion again, to bring a big name back to England and fight him here.” Khan also insisted that his future was in the welterweight division, not at 154 lbs.

The broadcast team tried to goad Khan into calling out former IBF Welterweight Champion Kell Brook, who was ring-side as a SKY Sports commentator, but Khan repeated his intention to fight next at 147. When Brook entered the ring, the boxers went on a fairly conventional (and artificial) verbal sparring match that lasted longer than the actual main event.

In the featured undercard bout, Tommy “Boom Boom” Coyle (24-4, 11 KOs) took on Commonwealth Lightweight Champion Sean “Masher” Dodd (15-3-1, 3 KOs). It was a competitive and entertaining bout from the opening bell, with both fighters taking risks and throwing offensive punches. Coyle caught Dodd with an overhand right with ten seconds left in the fourth round, but Dodd managed to survive till the bell. In the sixth, Coyle landed a perfect right counter, dropping Dodd awkwardly to the matt, and the former champion banged his gloves in rueful frustration before rising to his feet. This time, however, Coyle piled on, leaving Dodd’s corner no choice but to throw in the towel.

It was a treat for US boxing fans to be able to stream a SKY Sports broadcast, via the new ESPN+ service. The next ESPN+ boxing live stream on June 9th features WBO Welterweight Champion Jeff Horn taking on American superstar Terrence “Bud” Crawford, as the Omaha fighter moves up to 147 lbs.

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Amir Khan Returns to the Ring against Phil Lo Greco

By: Eric Lunger

This Saturday, at the Echo Arena in Liverpool, UK, former unified super lightweight champion Amir Khan (31-4, 19 KOs) returns to the ring after an almost two-year hiatus from the sport. His opponent is Phil Lo Greco (28-3, 15 KOs) of Toronto, Canada. The bout will stream exclusively in the US at 5:30 ET as part of the Top Rank on ESPN series.

Photo Credit: Amir Khan Twitter Account

Khan, 32, is a Bolton, Lancashire native, but Saturday marks his first appearance in the UK in almost five years. A star since his break-out year in 2009 when he won his first world title, Khan has racked up wins over Marco Antonio Barrera, Paulie Malignaggi, Marcos Maidana, and Zan Judah. In 2011, Khan suffered a tough, split-decision loss to Lamont Peterson, followed seven months later by a TKO loss to Danny Garcia. None daunted, Khan returned to the ring in December of 2012 and rang off a series of five wins over the likes of Carlos Molina, Luis Collazo, Devon Alexander, and Chris Algieri.

This string of impressive victories set up a WBC world welterweight title fight against Saul “Canelo” Alvarez. Giving away a serious weight advantage (made all the more frightening by Canelo’s recent clenbuterol controversy), Khan took one-too-many left jabs to the body. When Alvarez feinted another left jab and Khan dropped his hands, Alvarez delivered a crushing straight right to Khan’s chin, dropping the British fighter and silencing the T-Mobile Arena crowd.

Phil Lo Greco has fought almost all of his professional career at super welterweight, though he generally weighs in around 150 lbs. Fighting almost exclusively in Canada and Europe early in his career, Lo Greco has two big-name fights on his resumé. In 2013, he dropped a twelve-round unanimous decision to Shawn Porter on wide cards, and in 2015 he lost to rising star Errol Spence, Jr., by third-round TKO. Since then, Lo Greco has gone 2-1 against second-tier opposition.

Nonetheless, Lo Greco feels confident and prepared. Noting that he had an extensive eleven-week camp, he told Sky Sports: “I’m physically and mentally ready, I’ve lost a lot of weight.” The Canadian fighter gave Khan his due, saying, “He has done great [things] for British boxing, but his time is past. Athletes always thing they have one more in them.”

For Khan, he must put the ghost of the Alvarez knockout behind him. It would be easy to walk away from the sport after such a scary loss, but Khan is a warrior – just check out the Maidana fight. While Khan’s ring movement and hand speed can be dazzling one wonders how much his skills have rusted during the almost two-year break. Finally, there are the intangibles, like hunger, focus, and mental preparation, all of which are crucial for success at the top level of the sport. Khan can be an impulsive and emotional fighter, letting his will to tangle get himself in trouble.

“I am one of those fighters with a huge heart, I like to get into tear-ups,” Khan told ESPN, “and I like to mix it up.” Coming home to the UK, will Khan want to put on a show for his home fans? Most definitely, but he will have to minimize his risk-taking if he wants to keep Lo Greco from landing a fortuitous power-shot.

Streaming live at 5:30 ET on Saturday evening, fans can stream ESPN+ on the ESPN app on mobile and TV-connected devices, or on ESPN.com. ESPN+ is a new, direct to consumer streaming service from the Walt Disney Company, in partnership with ESPN.

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Amir Iman: “It’s Time To Get The Title Now”

by: Sean Crose

Bob Arum used a Thursday press conference to promote this Saturday’s Madison Square Garden card to push his political beliefs. “We’re getting rid of all these Republicans, like Nunes and McCarthy,” the octogenarian promoter claimed at one point. “They’re all gone,” Arum also used the occasion to argue his beliefs on immigration. Alongside Arum on stage was none other than longtime rival Don King, who himself decided to wear an oversize pin adorned with a picture of President Donald Trump. Although this weekend’s card, which will be aired live on ESPN, features a world title bout, the entire affair on Thursday was about the two promoters, who took turns jabbing at one another.

The featured fighters did get a chance to speak, however. Ireland’s Michael Conlon, a 5-0 super bantamweight, made it clear he was happy to return to New York, the place where he made his professional debut exactly a year ago. “It means a lot to me to be back,” he claimed. “Every time I walk through the street, I see someone I know…it feels like Ireland when I am here.” Conlan, who will be meeting 15-2 David Berna, exchanged gifts onstage with WWE personality, and fellow Irishman, Finn Balor.

Mehdi Amar, the 34-5-2 light heavyweight who will be facing the feared 14-0 Oleksandr Gvozdyk on Saturday for the interim WBC world light heavyweight title, also expressed his pleasure at being in New York. “I’m really happy to be here,” he claimed. “Such a prestigious title.” His opponent, Gvozdyk, was in good spirits. “All the fans I think should expect a good fight,” he stated. “I’m happy to fight on ESPN and thankful for ESPN for a great opportunity.” Although he will clearly be in deep, Amar declared he was ready for Saturday’s challenge. “I’ll take this fight as any other fight,” he said. “The pressure’s on my shoulders.”

The two fighters who will engage in this weekend’s main even were far more subdued than the promoters who are putting on the fight. The 21-1-0 Amir Imam showed quiet confidence in his quest to attain the WBC world super lightweight title by beating the 21-0 Jose Carlos Ramirez. “He’s a tough fighter,” Imam said of his opponent. “I see a lot in him. I’m not overlooking him.” Imam also made sure to exude confidence. “It’s time to get the title now,” he stated plainly. Like his foe, Ramirez wasn’t interested in being over the top. “It’s definitely a blessing for me to able to fight here for my first world title,” Ramirez told the media, exuding graciousness.

The fighters were polite, but the promoters made sure the even was far from tactful.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Mayweather, Anderson, Garcia, Rios, Joshua, Khan, and more…

Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of December 19th to December 26th covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

USA Boxing Nationals Champion Jared Anderson America’s Next Great Heavyweight?

Christmas came early for Jared Anderson, who not only won the heavyweight title at the recent USA Boxing National Championships, the 18-year-old also captured the Most Outstanding Boxer Award in the Elite Division.

Seeded No. 7 in eight-boxer field at The Nationals, Anderson, in order, defeated No. 2 Jesus Flores in the opening round, 5-0, edged No. 3 Adrian Tillman in the semifinals, 3-2, and upset five-time national champion Cam F. Awesome, 5-0, in the championship final.

In USA Boxing’s most recently listed heavyweight ratings (Nov. 17, 2017), Tillman and Awesome are ranked No. 1 and 2, respectively, Flores is No. 5, and Anderson is unranked.

“I think that’s going to change,” Anderson noted. “Winning the heavyweight title and Most Outstanding Boxing Award meant the world to me. Maybe some people had never heard of me, but I’ve been boxing since I was eight, and I’ve faced a lot of different styles.

“I had a vendetta going with Tillman and, instead of boxing, I tried to take his head off. Simple work allowed me to beat Awesome. He is a good fighter. Cam does what he wants in the ring — throws jabs, sits there and builds up points – and intimidates some opponents. I took the fight to him. Not wild, though, because he’d have been there in the ring, calm and smiling, and I would have lost. I used my jab more than anything against him.”

One of 11 siblings in two households, Anderson is another USA Boxing success story. Growing up in Toledo, Ohio, Anderson was constantly getting into trouble in school and boxing eventually saved him. His mother convinced her son to meet a local boxing coach, who introduced Jared to boxing, drilling discipline into him, something Jared desperately needed at that point in his young life.

Boxing in Toledo has also aided his overall development in boxing. “We push each other,” Anderson explained. “We support each other and perfect our crafts. There’s a lot of support here at all the gyms in Toledo.”

Anderson represented Team USA at this past August’s 2017 Bradenburg Cup in Frankfurt, Germany, at which Anderson won the heavyweight title, as well as the Most Outstanding Boxer Award, which should have been a warning for other leading U.S. heavyweights.

As a young boxer, Anderson admired three legends who were all products of USA Boxing, U.S. Olympians and Olympic medal winners: 1. Sugar Ray Leonard – “Fast hands, speed, a phenomenal boxer.” 2. Evander Holyfield – “A warrior who could bang or box. Moved up successfully from cruiserweight to heavyweight.” 3. Muhammad Ali — “Not just because he was a great boxer, but more so because of his life.”

Right now, Anderson stand 6′ 2 and weighs 200 lbs., but he’s only 18 and should continue growing even larger. Ultimately, he wants to be heavyweight champion of the world, but Jared does have a plan.

“I want to stay as active as possible next year, competing in tournaments, and turn pro but not until after the (2020) Olympics,” Anderson concluded. “I’m not turning pro until after the (2020) Olympics. I want to win a gold medal, turn pro and win the world heavyweight title, so I can move my mother out of the ‘hood.”

Remember the name, boxing fans, Jared Anderson has the potential to be America’s next great heavyweight.

Eddie Hearn Releases Potential 2018 Fight Dates for Anthony Joshua

Boxing superstar Anthony Joshua has been the target for many of the world’s top heavyweights, including American rival Deontay Wilder.

Eddie Hearn recently indicated that they are close to confirming the next opponent for Anthony Joshua. They are looking for date on a Saturday night either near the end of March or the beginning of April.

“We’re getting there,” Hearn recently told Sky Sports. “As AJ says, he wants the belts, he wants to be the undisputed king of the division. That’s the aim, and to do that he has to win two belts.”

He continued, “We’re looking at March 24, March 31 and April 7 as potential dates for his next fight, with various different venues in London and Wales, even other venues and cities around Europe as well.”

Joseph Parker looks like the next likely opponent for Anthony Joshua.

Danny Garcia to Face Brandon Rios

Danny Garcia is scheduled to face Brandon Rios on Saturday, February 17th. This fight will be taking place on Showtime. The Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas, Nevada is the announced venue.

Garcia hasn’t been seen inside a ring since his close split decision loss to Keith Thurman in March of 2017 and will have sat out for nearly a year in between fights. Rios only fought once since his loss to Timothy Bradley Jr. in November of 2015.

A loss for either fighter will likely remove them from future title shots.

Floyd Mayweather Jr. Challenges Kobe Bryant to a Game of 1 on 1

Kobe Bryant, one of Basketball’s all time greats, recently had the honor of having both of his jersey numbers retired by the Los Angeles Lakers.

Bryant posted on instagram thanking his fans, and Floyd Mayweather Jr. responded to his post. He wrote, “@ kobebryant I’m ready to play you one on one for $1,000,000”.

It’s not yet clear if this post was made in jest or if it’s for charity, but Mayweather has thrown out the challenge to Kobe.

Amir Khan Receives Death Threats for Photo of Christmas Tree

British Boxer is a practicing Muslim who recently posted a photo of a Christmas tree on his instagram.

Khan posted the Christmas tree on Instagram with the following caption, “While everyone’s asleep, daddy put the Christmas tree up. Lamaisah’s going to be happy. #Christmas #MerryChristmas2017

However, some of Khan’s followers were not happy and posted threatening messages in response.

He was accused of betraying Islam and many told him to go to hell. One person wrote, “Allah is definitely judging him for that and will surely punish those who imitate the kuffar by celebrating and joining in their pagan festivals.”

Another wrote, “You must be dead and your family will be death I promise and Allah must promise I and Allah see you and check you your angel death came to see you.”

However, some people wrote positive messages such as, “He lives in England in a western culture where Christmas is celebrated. It’s about respect just like if you were in another country. It’s for his daughter.”

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Amir “Hardcore” Mansour & Sergey Kuzmin TD in Moscow!

By: Ken Hissner

At the Luzhniki Arena in Moscow Monday American heavyweight Amir “Harcore” Mansour and Sergey Kuzmin battled into the third round when a clash of heads ended the bout. Italian referee Massimino Barrvecchio stopped the bout at 2:45 of the round.

Both fighters went to their corners and ring physicians wouldn’t allow the bout to continue. Mansour had a nasty cut over his right eye and Kuzmin was cut on the forehead. They were fighting for the WBC International title which still remains vacant.

Mansour, 23-2-1 (16), a southpaw, who hasn’t fought since March of 2017 has pleaded to his manager Joe Hand, Sr. to get him a bout. In that last fight Mansour defeated former contender Travis “My Time” Kauffman, 31-1, in the latter’s hometown of Reading, PA, by decision to capture the vacant USA PA State title and the vacant WBC United States (USNBC) title. “I have seven belts and can’t get a title fight,” said Mansour. He is ranked No. 15 in the WBO ratings where New Zealand’s Joe Parker is champion.
The Faller Kuzmin, 11-0-2 (8) is a former Russian amateur champion and currently holds the WBC Eurasia Pacific Boxing Council title. He has defeated four Americans in his eleven previous bouts. The last was stopping Malcolm Tann, 24-4, in June in Ontario, Canada. He has fought four of his bouts in the United States so possible a rematch could be held in the US or not than back to Russia if the promoter World of Boxing Promotions does the return bout.

Mansour has had the kind of disappointment of seeing two of his previous opponents prior to the Kauffman match get world title fights. In October of 2015 he was held to a disputed split decision draw against Gerald Washington, 16-0, who went onto fight Deontay Wilder in February of 2017 ending in defeat.

The other opponent was Dominic Breazeale, 16-0, in January of 2016 when Mansour put a beating on Breazeale dropping him in the third round in sweeping the first four rounds and winning the fifth when he suffered a bout ending cut in his tongue requiring 36 stitches. His corner man Danny Davis said “I have never seen so much blood coming from a fighter’s mouth back in the dressing room. Along with Davis Calvin Davis works the corner.
The judges selected for this bout were Predrag Aleksic from Montenegro and from Belgium Daniel Van de Wield and Ukranian Olena Pobyvailo who also resides in Belgium.

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Amir “Hardcore” Mansour and Sergey Kuzman in Moscow Monday

Amir “Hardcore” Mansour and Sergey Kuzman in Moscow Monday
By: Ken Hissner

New Jersey heavyweight Amir “Hardcore” Mansour has been without a fight since March of 2017. He is substituting for Lucas Browne of Australia on Monday at the Luzhniki Arena in Moscow for the WBC heavyweight International title. He is taking on Russian Sergey Kuzman who is unbeaten and untested.

Mansour, 23-2-1 (16), is a southpaw who comes to conquer his opponents by knockout. He has had some bad breaks since returning to the ring after 10 years of inactivity and drew well in the state of DE. He trains out of the Joe Hand Gym in South Philly is managed by Hand Sr.

“In all this time since March I had a couple of short notice low paying offers and that is it. I look forward to this fight and know I will need a knockout to win,” said Mansour.

“This is professional boxing and you have to be ready for last moment changes. We were ready for that but we had to make some last moment adjustments of course, but nothing major. We were watching Mansour’s fight with Breazeale and we know what he is, an assertive strong fighter with character who steps into the ring with the will to win,” said Kuzman. He added pertaining to Wilder “he avoids fighting strong fighters. Our goal is to get rated in the WBC and look to fight Wilder in 2018,” said Kuzman.

Mansour is ranked No. 15 by the WBO organization. He is coming off wins over Joey Dawejko and Travis Kauffman both Philadelphia boxers. His first loss was to another Philadelphia boxer and former 2-time Cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham who he had on the canvas but ran out of gas near the end of that fight but still could have gotten the decision on this writers score card.

Mansour had a disputed draw with Gerald Washington in a fight that he clearly won. Another loss was to Dominic Breazeale who he beat up for four rounds. In the fifth round he took a punch that cut into his tongue causing 36 stitches afterwards. The fight was stopped in the fifth round when he couldn’t continue. Neither Washington nor Breazeale were interested in re-matches for obvious reasons.

Kuzman is 11-0 (8), and will have about a 3-4 inch height advantage over Mansour. Both fighters are rated in the IBO with Kuzman No. 28 and Mansour No. 30. Kuzman is gunning for WBC champion Deontay “the Bronze Bomber” Wilder while Mansour being ranked in the WBO would love an opportunity to fight WBO champion Joe Parker from New Zealand unless a win here gets him into the WBC rankings and a chance to fight Wilder. Both fighters would jump at the opportunity for a title fight with any of the current champions.

Mansour is 45 but a young 45 while Kuzman is 30 and with less than a dozen fights under his belt would be taking a chance with either Browne or Mansour but he is willing to fight both.

Kuzman holds the Eurasia Pacific Council title. He had a very good amateur career going back to 2010 winning a World Amateur tournament. Mansour has seven belts and the most prestigious was the USBA belt. This is a World of Boxing Promotion.

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Boxing Insider Interview with Amir Mansour: The Most Feared Heavyweight in the World?

By: Ken Hissner

From New Jersey and trains in Philly Is Amir Mansour the Most Feared Heavyweight in the World? Mansour, 23-2-1 (16)! We keep hearing about Povetkin and Ortiz challenging the lone American champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder but both failing their drug tests. Now Wilder is giving the only opponent to go the distance with him whom he won the title from in Haitian Bermane Stiverne. This is a rematch but Stiverne hasn’t had a fight in “two years!” How has he kept the No. 1 status in the WBC by his promoter Don King?

Mansour is currently 23-2-1 (16) and won his first 20 fights and was in a total war with 2-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, 26-6, losing what I thought was not the best of decisions. Rematch? Never happened. He lost his USBA belt and an IBF rating. Cunningham goes onto lose to a pair of unbeaten Polish heavyweights and in his most recent match returned to the cruiser division. At least he got the chance at those Polish fighters. He got short changed against Tyson Fury in the UK. Both Mansour and Cunningham whom I know personally are both good people.

Some seven months after the Cunningham fight in late 2014 Mansour does away with Fred Kassi, 18-2, in seven rounds. Who gets to fight Chris Arreola but Kassi and to a draw? Then he loses to Dominic Breazeale, Hughie Fury and Jarrell Miller. All unbeaten and all getting in the title picture. Fury recently lost a disputed decision to WBO champ Joseph Parker.

Breazeale goes onto fight Mansour and gets beat up for five rounds but lands one “lucky punch” putting over 30 stitches into the tongue of Mansour. On this win Breazeale gets a title fight with Anthony Joshua and of course gets stopped. Mansour’s people couldn’t get a rematch then or now with Breazeale.

After the Kassi win Mansour has nothing going in the big picture so he returns to the city of Philadelphia where he trains and defeats up and down popular Philly fighter Joey “Tank” Dawejko, 14-3-2, for the PA title. Then he gets another “giant” with an unbeaten record in Gerald Washington, 18-0, and has to settle for a split decision draw.

This fight was all his but two of the officials didn’t think so. In 2017 Washington gets a title fight with Wilder and of course is stopped. Then stopped again against Jarrell Miller who is getting built up like he is the American boxer to watch but looks more like Buster Mathis!

Mansour has a year to recover from such a serious injury and does he come back with a stiff? No way. He goes into the hometown of former WBA contender Travis Kauffman, 31-1, on Kauffman’s father’s promotion and defeats Kauffman over 12 rounds for the PA title again along with the WBC USNBC title in which was his last fight in March of 2017.
“I’ve got more belts than anyone out there and still can’t get a big fight,” said Mansour. He’s won the World Boxing Foundation Intercontinental, interim WBO NABO, IBF North American, World Boxing Federation Inter-continental, USBA, PA, and USNBC belts. Seven belts and what has it got him? He is managed by Joe Hand, Sr. and promoted by Peltz Boxing’s J Russell Peltz.

Mansour only appears once in the world ratings at No. 15 of the WBO a belt held by Joseph Parker of New Zealand. Breazeale is No. 4 (No. 7 in the WBC & IBF), Povetkin No. 7 and Luis Ortiz No. 9. The latter two flunked drug tests and are still rated that high? The Jamaican out of the UK Dilian Whyte, 21-1, is No. 6. “There was talk of me getting rated and fighting Whyte. Mansour said, “Well, I’m rated so where’s the Whyte fight?” Whyte is No. 3 in the WBC and calling out Wilder with a fight for the WBC Silver title next for him. Others between No. 9 Ortiz and Mansour are “who are they?” Carlos Takam who just lost to Anthony Joshua is No. 12. Two Asian boxers Kyotaro Fujimoto who hasn’t fought out of Japan or any contender’s is No. 8 and China’s Silver Medalist in the 2018 Olympics Zhilei Zhang is No. 11 and managed by Dino Duva. You know neither of them will fight Mansour.

At age 45 Mansour has the body of a 30 year old and features of a Marvin Hagler look alike at heavyweight. He came back in 2010 after a 9 year absence. He is talked about locally of being the “most dangerous” heavyweight in the world and none of the contenders want to risk a bout with him. On paper he is 3-2-1 in his last six fights and still no fights in the past seven months?

Mansour took the time to answer some questions about his future.

KEN HISSNER: You take on two young “giants” in Breazeale and Washington and they have both gotten world title fights since then. How does this make you feel?

AMIR MANSOUR: It’s embarrassing because you know it’s not fair but what can you do about it? It’s humiliating as a boxer and as a fan.

KEN HISSNER: You have collected seven belts along the way but still never a title chance at that eighth belt for the world title. How do you figure this one out?

AMIR MANSOUR: I can’t figure it out. Maybe someone at the top doesn’t like me.

KEN HISSNER: Who should you be fighting?

AMIR MANSOUR: Top (15) contenders should fight each other, not someone not rated.

KEN HISSNER: I look at the ratings and see BJ Flores No. 11 in the WBA due to what? He was at the recent Newark, NJ, show working for the network and looks about twenty pounds overweight. Do you think he’d ever fight you? Fres Oquendo No. 3 in the WBA when has he hasn’t fought in over three years? He and former champion Shannon Briggs both your age were to fight for the vacant WBA title until Briggs got hurt. Did you get a call to replace him?

AMIR MANSOUR: No but we called and said we would replace Briggs.

KEN HISSNER: Now Joshua defeated Carlos Takam of France who had lost to both Parker and Povetkin. It seems if they lose they still get a shot doesn’t it?

AMIR MANSOUR: Yep, exactly, man.

KEN HISSNER: Now Wilder is defending for once against his No. 1 contender the man he took the WBC title from Stiverne. Only man to go the distance with Wilder but hasn’t fought in two years. Sound like more politics?

AMIR MANSOUR: How is he No. 1 and hasn’t fought for two years?

KEN HISSNER: Have you had any offers from your promoter and manager?

AMIR MANSOUR: I can’t even get a reasonable fight. I’ve had two fights offered this year. One on a five day notice for pennies and another on a three week notice for not pennies but not enough to go to another fighter’s country where you know you have to knock him out to win.

KEN HISSNER: Who works your corner?

AMIR MANSOUR: Danny Davis who also does cuts, Calvin Davis and Dave Sewell.

KEN HISSNER: Thanks for taking the time to answer the questions and thanks for always being reachable.

AMIR MANSOUR: I’m going to continue on my mission to be heavyweight champion of the world and I am not going to quit trying.

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Amir Khan: “Can’t Wait To Get Back In The Ring, Where I Belong”

By: Sean Crose

“Can’t wait,” Amir Khan tweeted this week, “to get back in the ring, where I belong.” Sure enough, the last time fans saw the lighting fast former British Olympian was back in 2016. It was then that Khan was knocked out in brutal fashion by Canelo Alvarez after Khan had bravely jumped up the weight scale in order to land a long desired major pay per view event. For the record, Khan presented himself extremely well in the fight, but the power of the Mexican star proved to be too much. Once Canelo found his mark, the results were nothing short of frightening.

Now Khan wants back in the ring. The 31-4 Bolton native is currently thirty years old – which is no longer as old as thirty used to be for a professional boxer. Still, the man has taken some punishment over the years. Besides the thunderous shot Canelo rocked him with last year, Kahn has also fallen victim to the fists of Danny Garcia and Breidis Prescott. Marcos Maidana also gave Khan the brawl of his life in a 2010 fight where Khan emerged victorious. These bouts, coupled with a long time away from the ring, leave fans and analysts with a considerable amount of questions.

Will Khan, for instance, still have the speed which he has relied on? Will he still have the quick reflexes? Although well known for the times he’s come up short, Khan certainly has an impressive record for a professional boxer. He’s beaten the likes of Zab Judah, Chris Algieri, Paulie Malignaggi and Marco Antonio Barrera. He was also proving to be quite the challenge for Canelo and Garcia before his famous glass jaw shattered on him. Some may wonder now, however, if the gifts which made Khan such a formidable opponent in the past are still with him.

There’s also the matter of Khan’s rather unconventional personality, which can make his career decisions somewhat unpredictable. The man appeared desperate for a Floyd Mayweather match during the “Money” era, but seemed to some to be completely unwilling to face Kell Brook when a battle between he and his fellow Englishman would have made for quite an interesting fight. Throw in very public personal issues and it’s sometimes difficult for even the most acute of analysts to discern what Khan is up to.

Still, the man has proven to be a very talented and competitive fighter. He also has a style that makes for good viewing. Should he come back, as he says he will, Khan will definitely generate interest. It’s up to Khan to ultimately step back into the ring, however. Until he does, fans will be left to wonder…or, worse still for Khan, move on.

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“Ill Fight Louis Ortiz” Says Amir “Hardcore” Mansour!

“I’ll Fight Louis Ortiz” Says Amir “Hardcore” Mansour!
By: Ken Hissner

This writer recently did an article calling 38 year old Louis “King Kong” Ortiz, 27-0 (23), the most feared heavyweight in the world. I had also said that at one time about 44 year old Amir “Hardcore” Mansour, 23-2-1 (16). If it were not for a bad cut on his tongue against Dominic Breazeale after beating him up for 5 rounds it would have been him fighting Anthony “AJ” Joshua in June of 2016.

Amir Mansour: Bermane Stiverne Didn’t Fight Like a Champ vs Wilder!

Why isn’t Mansour in any of the alphabet organizations ratings? When I tell you the champions people make sure Mansour is not in their top 15 there isn’t any way they can fight him. There are 60 slots in the ratings and you tell me Mansour isn’t worthy of one of them? The WBC has him ranked at No. 21.

One thing Ortiz and Mansour have in common is they are both southpaws and rarely does an orthodox boxer want to fight a southpaw. When you look at the ratings it’s not what you have done but who bought their way into the ratings one way or another.

A perfect example is BJ Flores who has been 2-2 in his last 4 fights with 1-2 as a cruiserweight and only in his last fight did he fight heavyweight and beats Jeremy Bates 26-18-1 for the WBA NABA title and is put into the WBA ratings at No. 11. Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller beats Fred Kassi for the WBO NABO title in his last fight in August of 2016 and is ranked No. 3 WBO, No. 7 WBA and No. 9 IBF. Mansour had knocked out Kassi 2 years before that.

Look at Wilder who hasn’t defended against anyone in his top 4 contenders. He has defended against from last fight on against Washington, Arreola (who flunked drug test prior to this) and Szpilka. French champ Duhaupas and Eric Molina who has had title fights with Wilder and Joshua. I hate to use the term “black balled” but it looks like Mansour has been just that from the organizations ratings!
Whenever this writer has covered Mansour in DE or Atlantic City the fan’s start stirring and cheering from the time he enters the ring with those uncovered arms bulging out. He reminds one of a heavyweight Marvin Hagler with a bigger punch. He knows how to work a crowd before the fight even starts!

Mansour got shortchanged in his draw with Gerald Washington in October 2015 and Washington has 2 fights in 2016 and gets a title fight with Wilder in February of 2017. In January of 2016 Mansour wins all 5 rounds from Dominic Breazeale easily but suffered a cut tongue requiring some 30+ stitches. Just 5 months later it’s Breazeale getting an IBF title fight with Anthony Joshua. In January of 2013 Mansour beats Kelvin Price, 14-1, who had only lost to Wilder before being champ and Price hasn’t fought since Mansour stopped him.

KEN HISSNER: You are line fine wine for the older you get the better you seemed to get. Did you hear about Shannon Briggs failing a drug test which should put him from fighting in a WBA title bout against Fres Oquendo who hasn’t fought in 2 year’s. How would you like to fill in for him?

AMIR MANSOUR: I’d love to take Briggs place. I cannot believe Briggs failed this test but to say he did to make this fight aware to the public since it’s like who knows about it?

KEN HISSNER: Do you feel your two wins over Joey Dawejko and one time contender Travis Kauffman should at least put you back in the rankings?

AMIR MANSOUR: Of course. I won the WBC USNBC title which should have gotten me into the WBC rankings. I’ve held the USBA, WBC Continental Americas, World Boxing Federation and Foundation Intercontinental titles, IBF North American and the interim WBO NABO titles. I have held more junior titles than any American heavyweight out there except for maybe Wilder. I was supposed to fight Artur Szpilka (then 20-1), in December of 2015 with the winner fighting Wilder. Next thing we know Szpilka gets the fight in January of 2016 against Wilder.

KEN HISSNER: Do you think Luis Ortiz will be willing to fight you?

AMIR MANSOUR: I would hope so. Seems like none of the champions will fight him but I would.

KEN HISSNER: How were the ratings when you have fought on say FS1?

AMIR MANSOUR: Their ratings went through the roof. One fight I was the co-feature and had more hit’s than the main event did. Wilder would get many more views fighting me than he did Washington.

KEN HISSNER: I know Joe Hand is your manager and J Russell Peltz normally promotes your fights. How is your working with them?

AMIR MANSOUR: Joe is a great guy. Russell has tried getting us major fights but we get turned down time and again which isn’t his fought.

KEN HISSNER: I want to thank you for taking the time to answer the questions:

AMIR MANSOUR: Thanks Mr. Hissner.

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Mansour Wins Over Kauffman and Cintron Draws with Grayton!

Mansour Wins Over Kauffman and Cintron Draws with Grayton!
By: Ken Hissner

At the Santander Arena, in Reading, PA, Friday night Premier Boxing Champions, Kings Promotions and Corona Extra over Bounce TV put on a major heavyweight fight Friday night.


Heavyweight southpaw Amir “Hardcore” Mansour, 23-2-1 (16), of Wilmington, DE, won a majority decision over Travis “My Time” Kauffman, 31-2 (23), of Reading, PA, over 12 rounds for the USNBC and PA State Titles.

After four rounds it looked even and by the sixth both fighters seemed to have slowed down. Mansour complained on at least three occasions of low blows and referee Shawn Clark would have none of it. Kauffman fought most of the fight southpaw trying to offset the southpaw advantage of Mansour. Down the stretch Mansour seemed to have more left in the tank taking the last two rounds and the fight.

Judge Steve Weisfeld had it 114-114, Anthony Mundy 117-11 and Mike Somma and this writer 115-113 for the winner. Whether this showing on both parts is enough to get back into the ratings is questionable.

Former IBF welterweight champion Kermit “El Asesino” Cintron, 39-5-3 (30), of Reading, PA, and David “Day Day” Grayton, 15-1-1 (11), Wash, DC, fought to a majority draw after 5 rounds. An accidental butt opened a cut over Cintron’s right eye and he couldn’t continue so they went to the scorecards.
Judges had it 49-46 for Cintron and 47-47 twice. This writer had it 48-46 for Grayton based on a knockdown. Grayton turned it into a brawl and Cintron tried to counter him but couldn’t keep him from rushing in and bullying him to the ropes.

It was an ugly fight and referee Gary Rosato had his hands full trying to keep the two apart throughout. Cintron seemed fortunate to get a draw considering he was down once.

Former 2-time IBF cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, 29-8-1 (13), of Philadelphia, won an easy decision over Felipe “El Indio” Romero, 19-12-1 (13), from Baja, MEX, over 6 rounds of a scheduled 8 round bout. This was to get the rust off of Cunningham who returned to the ring after 11 months. His manager Al Haymon promises Cunningham a title fight while all four cruiserweight champions are from out of the US.

Judges had it 60-54 as did this writer. Referee was Rosato.

Super welterweight Chordale Booker, 6-0 (3), of Brooklyn, NY, won a 6 round decision over Moshea Aleem, 4-1-1 (2), of VA.

It was Booker coming forward and Aleem loading up and being outworked. All 3 judges had it 59-55 while this writer had it 57-57. Referee was Clark.

Super featherweight Chris Colbert, 6-0 (2), of Brooklyn, NY, won a decision over tough Wilfredo Garriga, 3-5-1 (2), of Juana Diaz, PR, over 6 rounds.

Colbert did more moving and jabbing than anything while Garriga tried to make a fight of it but the judges didn’t see it that way. All 3 had it 60-54 while this writer had it 57-57. The fans were not happy with the performance of Colbert. Referee was Clark.

Super welterweight southpaw Erik Spring, 9-1-2 (1), of Reading, PA, decisioned Jeremiah Wiggins, 10-5-1 (5), of Newport News, VA, over 6 rounds.

Spring used his reach advantage well and was willing to mix it up when necessary. Judges had it 60-53 as did this writer and 59-54 twice. Referee was Dali.

Middleweight Nicholas Hernandez, 6-2 (1), of Lebanon, PA, won a hard fought decision over Nick Valliere, 5-2 (2), of Forked River, NJ, over 6 rounds.

This was a swing bout and no decision was announced but referee Rosato raised the hand of Hernandez whom seemed fortunate to get the decision.

Super lightweight Kashon Hutchinson, 2-2 (1), of Reading, PA, did more posing than fighting allowing Darius“I Am King” Ervin, 4-1 (0), of L.A., walk away with the decision over 4 rounds.

Judges had it 39-37 twice and 38-38 as did this writer.

Super lightweight Matt Quirindongo, 1-0 (0), of Reading, PA, won a decision over Weusi Johnson, 2-3 (0), of Wilmington, DE, over 4 rounds.

Quirindongo scored a knockdown and was too strong for Johnson who showed little power in both hands. Referee was Dali.
Two judges had it 40-35 as did this writer and one judge 40-36.

Super lightweight Jesus Perez, 2-0 (1), of Reading, PA, decisioned Titos Matthew Gosalves, 0-1 (0), of Lancaster, PA, over 4 rounds.

A knockdown seemed to be the difference with all 3 judges scoring it 39-36. This writer gave Gosalves a 10-8 round offsetting the knockdown calling it 37-37.

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Kauffman & Mansour in Showdown at Reading Friday!

Kauffman & Mansour in Showdown at Reading Friday!
By: Ken Hissner

There was a time when they were sparring one another. Then came the Facebook trash talking back and forth. Now the rubber has hit the road on March 17th at the Santander Arena in Reading, PA. Travis “My Time” Kauffman, 31-1 (23), of Reading, PA, takes on southpaw Amir “Hardcore” Mansour, 22-2-1 (16), of Wilmington, DE, over 12 rounds for the WBC US (USNBC) and PA State heavyweight titles.


This writer is not a fan of two boxers I like fighting one another but I have to say it will be an interesting match-up on Premier Boxing Champions: The Next Round on Bounce TV starting at 9pm. Doors open at 6pm and first bout 6:30pm. It is a ten bout card! It’s quite unusual to have 20 boxers on a card with only one with a losing record. Kings Promotions and Corona are promoters.

Wednesday in Reading a press conference was held at the Doubletree Hotel with David Feldman at the microphone. He started with the co-feature with former IBF welterweight champion Kermit “El Asesino” Cintron and David “Day Day” Grayton. Cintron’s trainer Joe Pastore said “Kermit has re-discovered the style he once had. His right hand after surgery is now fine”. “I am well prepared and come Friday it will be my night,” said Cintron. Grayton had little to say.

Mansour is the former USBA and PA State champion. Kauffman is the No. 1 rated USBA contender. “Everything is great. I was in Houston since December 20th and came home March 5th. I have been motivated knowing that I have a killer in front of me. Amir wants what I want and that’s a shot at the heavyweight title.I knew if I beat Arreola it would open eyes, but if I beat Mansour it will open doors,” said Kauffman.

Trainer of Kauffman Naziim Richardson said “I think it will be worth for both. One word for Mansour and that is “dangerous” guy. He can blow your brains out with a good shot. You can’t lose your focus for a second.”
In pertaining to his age Mansour said “I’m selling youth juice at 1k a bottle if anyone is interested. I like to see sparks fly and this is a great opportunity for both of us.”

In the co-feature former IBF welterweight champion Kermit “El Asesino” Cintron, 39-5-2 (30) will be seeking win number 40. He is 6-0-1 in his last seven fights. He is taking on David “Day Day” Grayton, 15-1 (11), of Wash., D.C., in a scheduled 10 round super welterweight bout. Grayton was the 2010 National Golden Gloves champion defeating Errol Spence who is now the No. 1 IBF contender and former 2016 Olympian. This will be Cintron’s biggest test since coming back in 2013.

The undercard features the former 2-time IBF cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, 28-8-1 (13), of Philadelphia, back after an almost a year lay-off taking on Felipe “El Indio” Romero, 19-11-1 (13), in a scheduled 8. He is from Baja, MEX. He twice defeated Julio Cesar Gonzalez who stopped Poland’s DariuszMichalczewski win streak when he was 48-0 and in Germany winning the WBO light heavyweight title. Romero was the Mexican cruiserweight champion at the time. In his next fight he won the Mexican heavyweight title. Then he defeated Gonzalez in a rematch.
A pair of unbeaten Brooklyn boxers will be on the undercard in Chordale Booker, 5-0 (3), and Chris Colbert, 5-0 (2), in separate bouts. Local Reading product southpaw super welterweight Erik Spring, 8-1-2 (1), will be meeting Jeremiah Wiggins, 10-5-1 (5), out of Newport News, VA. Another local middleweight Nicholas Hernandez, 5-2 (1), meets Nick Valliere, 5-1 (2), of Forked River, NJ. And another Reading boxer super lightweight Kashon Hutchinson, 2-1 (1), takes on Darius “I Am King” Ervin, 3-1 (0), of L.A. While another in Jesus Perez makes his debut.

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Breaking News: Pacquiao-Khan Fight A No Go

Breaking News: Pacquiao-Khan Fight A No Go
By: Sean Crose

It ain’t happening, folks. Manny Pacquiao and Amir Khan are not going to be meeting in the boxing ring, at least not anytime soon. Talk was that the phantom superfight would go down in the Middle East this spring. What’s more, both Pacquiao and Khan announced over Twitter that they would, in fact, be facing one another. As Boxing Insider reported earlier this week, however, there was a potential air of unreality about the entire affair.

Pacquiao Macau Arrival_140824_002a-2

And now word arrives that the fight simply won’t be happening. ESPNs Dan Rafael writes that Pacquiao promoter Bob Arum informed ESPN “that the UAE deal for Pacquiao-Khan was dead.” UAE, which stands for United Arab Emirates, was said to be the proposed location of the hoped for megabout. What Pacquiao will do now is anyone’s guess, never mind Khan.

Pacquiao was originally supposed to face the widely unknown Jeff Horn, possibly in Horn’s homeland of Australia. That idea was clearly not in keeping with what Pacquiao wanted, however. Now that the potential of a big money dream match with Khan has morphed into a dream deferred, it will be interesting to see where things go from here.

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Could Pacquiao and Khan Have Been Catfished?

Could Pacquiao and Khan Have Been Catfished?
By: William Holmes

Catfish Defined:

Noun: A freshwater or marine fish with whiskerlike barbels around the mouth, typically bottom-dwelling.
Verb: Lure (someone) into a relationship by means of a fictional online persona

MTV’s popular catfish television show has been on air for six years and is extremely popular and shows no signs of slowing down.

This show highlights unsuspecting and naïve romantics falling in love with an online persona that’s often being controlled by someone that is not who the victim thinks they are. The popularity of the show lies in the drama and heartbreak that is shown when the lie is ultimately revealed to the heartbroken Romeo.

The naivety of these victims is hard to believe, and the desperation of these victims makes it hard for them to see past the smoke and mirrors of an obvious con.


Which leads us to the latest talk of Manny Pacquiao facing Amir Khan in the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Khan was expressed his desire to fight a big fight in the UAE since the mega fight between Pacquiao and Mayweather in 2015, and has established financial connections to that area as evident by a recent MMA gym he opened in Dubai.

When Pacquiao and Khan originally announced their fight on social media it was scheduled to take place on April 23rd, with no pay per view partner or network partnership announced.

If Pacquiao and Khan, as well as Pacquiao’s long time advisor Michael Koncz, are announcing that the parties have come to an agreement, surely an official announcement will soon follow.

But there’s one man who hasn’t confirmed the fight is official, and he’s the only man that can make it a reality.

That man is Bob Arum.

He’s gone as far as to call the reports of the fight “total and complete bu****t”. The short time to the date of an April fight would make it nearly impossible to make it with the proper promotional muscle. Reports have been put out there that the fight has since been moved back to May 20th.

But even that seems questionable. A fight in May would require Pacquiao to go back on his promise to not miss any sessions in the Filipino senate due to boxing, and Ramadan the Muslim holy month, begins on May 26th.
So why hasn’t Bob Arum given his blessing for a fight in the UAE? The likely answer is money, or the lack of guaranteed money.

When Pacquiao fought Mayweather he made an estimated career high of $120 million. But his purses since then have been decreasing in size. His third fight with Timothy Bradley netted him an estimated $20 million, and his fight with Jesse Vargas only earned him a guarantee of $4 million, with a percentage of Pay Per View Sales added on top of it. He made more than $4 million for his fight with Vargas, but nowhere near the money he made with Mayweather and still likely less than what he made for Bradley.

Pacquiao was rumored to face Jeff Horn before the talks of a fight with Khan emerged, but his purse was only reported to be a guaranteed $7 million, with an unrealistic shot at high Pay Per View sales.
Amir Khan’s value is also no longer what it used to be. It was rumored that Khan made upwards of $13 million when he fought Canelo Alvarez; but he was brutally knocked out for the third time in his career.

Many consider Khan to be damaged goods.

Khan’s financial prospects in the sport of boxing have decreased even further when his longtime rival Kell Brook officially signed to fight Errol Spence Jr.

Pacquiao’s declining value must be of great concern to him and his team, and to Arum. But Bob Arum has been one of boxing’s most successful promoters for decades for good reason: he knows how to make money, and knows the difference between a good deal and a bad one.

Much like the hopeless romantic that gets so easily suckered by a fake online profile, Khan and Pacquiao appear to be desperate in their search for another big payday.

The question remains as to who is putting up the money for this big time fight to be made in the UAE? The logistics alone of putting a major title fight in the Middle East would be extremely difficult, and the time zone difference would have a negative effect on pay per view sales.

Bob Arum is a businessman, and he knows a good deal when he sees it and is willing to jump on it if it presents itself. The guaranteed money must be missing from this deal for Arum to refute reports of the fight not being made. It’s hard to imagine Arum turning down this fight if there was real money to be made for all parties involved.

Where’s the money coming from?

Does Khan have a Middle Eastern Prince in his back pocket that’s willing to finance the fight regardless of the financial risks involved? A third party has to be involved for Khan and Pacquiao to get the guaranteed money $30 million they think they’ll receive.

Pacquiao and Khan appear to believe that this group is willing and able to guarantee the purses they seek, but until Arum announces the fight as being official…

Pacquiao and Khan might have been catfished.

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Pacquiao-Khan Reportedly Rescheduled for May 19th

Pacquiao-Khan Reportedly Rescheduled for May 19th
By: Sean Crose

It appears that Manny Pacquiao’s April date to fight Amir Khan has been pushed back to May 19th. According to Yahoo’s Kevin Iole, Pacquiao’s money man, Michael Koncz, spoke with Pacquiao’s promoter, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, and the feisty octogenarian finally gave his blessing to a Manny-Amir throwdown – with the date rescheduled in order for there to be more time to promote the event.

Mayweather vs Pacquiao SUPERFIGHT

Arum had at first wanted Pacquiao to face Australia’s Jeff Horn, perhaps in Horn’s homeland. Now, though, it looks like Arum is willing to go along with the desire of his star fighter, Pacquiao, who clearly wanted a more prestigious opponent for his next bout.

Pacquiao actually ran a poll recently to see who his fans wanted him to face. Khan won the poll, just like he had previously won a similar poll run by Floyd Mayweather. This time, however, Khan actually got the fight (Mayweather went on to face Marcos Maidana after Khan won his particular poll). The fact that many of the Khan votes came from the pay per view lucrative United States seems to have convinced team Pacquiao that the speedy and exciting Brit was the way to go. After some turbulence, Koncz now looks to have gotten the blessing from Arum he was looking for.

Although Pacquiao has clearly lived out his prime already, and Khan had lost in brutal fashion to Canelo Alvarez in his last fight, a Manny-Amir bout presents an intriguing matchup. Presumably a welterweight fight, it will be one of three major throwdowns in that division throughout the first half of 2017. Keith Thurman will face Danny Garcia in a title unifer this week, while Khan’s fellow Brit, Kell Brook, will be facing American wunderkind Errol Spence Jr in a IBF title bout the day after Pacquiao and Khan are supposed to fight.

The Pacquiao-Khan fight looks to be taking place in the United Arab Emirates. That means the event will officially be on the 20th of that country’s calendar, but on the 19th in the United States.

Although both Pacquiao and Khan are top fighters, there’s no guarantee the bout will be a huge success as far as pay per view buys go. The major Alvarez-Julio Caesar Chavez Jr match will be aired on pay per view a few weeks earlier. What’s more, Pacquiao hasn’t come close lately to breaking the records that he did when he faced Floyd Mayweather on pay per view back in 2015.

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