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Boxing Insider Notebook: Ward, Kovalev, Atlantic City, Carl Frampton, Leo Santa Cruz, Bute, and more…


Boxing Insider Notebook: Ward, Kovalev, Atlantic City, Carl Frampton, Leo Santa Cruz, Bute, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of November 22nd to November 29th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

After Capturing Light Heavyweight Titles, What is Next for Andre Ward?

Kovalev vs. Ward Does 160,000 PPV Buys

Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev PPV numbers have been reported by RingTV as coming in at 160,000 PPV buys. These numbers aren’t really surprising, and the Pacquiao vs. Vargas bout almost doubled the number of buys at approximately 300,000.

The financial incentive might not be there for Andre Ward to pursue a rematch with Sergey Kovalev based on these low numbers.

Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame Announces their 2017 Class

The Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame (ACBHOF) today announced the first 24 members into its class of 2017. This epic event will take place at The Claridge, a Radisson Hotel located at Park Place & Boardwalk in Atlantic City, New Jersey on Memorial Day Weekend; May 26, 27 and 28, 2017.

The Claridge Hotel serves as the signature Corporate Sponsor for this knockout weekend and will host an exciting itinerary for guests that will include: a red carpet meet and greet, invitation only rooftop cocktail reception, and an Ultimate Fight Fan Experience Expo (an interactive boxing and entertainment experience with exhibits, merchandise and memorabilia from top fighters and brands available for purchase and photo opportunities and autograph sessions) that is open to the general public.

“This is an excellent class of inductees each-and-every one of these individuals are well deserved and have done remarkable things to help Atlantic City be recognized as a top boxing destination,” said Ray McCline
President and Founder of the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame. Inductees to Atlantic City Hall of Fame (ACBHOF) are named in six categories and selected by ACBHOF’s esteemed committee.

Fighter inductees are Mike Tyson, Arturo Gatti, Levander Johnson, Mike Rossman, Matthew Saad Muhammad, Dwight Muhammad Quai, Micheal Spinks, and Larry Holmes. Trainer and cutman inductees are Lou Duva, Mike Hall Sr., and Bill Johnson. Promoter, manager, advisor, matchmaker, and ring announcer inductees are Don King, Frank Gelb, Don Elbaum, and Russell Peltz. Commission judges, doctors, and referees inductees are Larry Hazzard Sr., Steve Smoger, and Dr. Frank Dougett. Media indcutees are Bert Sugar, Dave Bontempo, and Jack Obermayer. Special coordinator inductees are Ken Cordon, Bob Lee, and Dennis Gomes.

“This is the vein that carries the life blood of boxing which pumps into the hearts of millions around the world,” said Rodrick Green Vice President Strategy and Business Development for ACBHOF. “We have our fingers on the pulse of this vein and that energy will be uncapped during the First Annual Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame Weekend!”

“Having been a part of boxing in Atlantic City throughout my broadcasting career as well as being in the corner with my brother George; the idea to preserve Atlantic City’s boxing legacy is long overdue,” stated Roy Foreman Senior Vice President of ACBHOF. “The Hall of Fame will play a key role in bringing the sport back to prominence in a city that is known as one of the original meccas for the sport of boxing.”

Over the next several months leading up to the ACBHOF 2017 Induction Weekend, updates on room packages, a detailed schedule of events and expected celebrity appearances at the event will be posted on the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame and the Claridge Hotel websites.

All interested sponsors, exhibitors, and vendors looking be involved in the induction or to reserve a booth at it are encouraged to contact the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame (ACBHOF):
Tele: 1+ (609) 318 -3188 (USA)
P.O. Box 7221 Atlantic City, New Jersey 08401
Email: [email protected] or [email protected]

Carl Frampton & Leo Santa Cruz to Host Open to the Public Los Angeles Press Conference in Advance of Featherweight World Championship Rematch

Featherweight world champion Carl Frampton and former three-division world champion Leo Santa Cruz will host an open to the public press conference in Los Angeles to discuss their highly anticipated rematch taking place Saturday, January 28 from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and live on SHOWTIME.

Also in attendance in advance of their world title showdown are 135-pound world champion Dejan Zlaticanin and former two-division world champion Mikey Garcia, who will clash in the opener of a SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING doubleheader beginning at 10 p.m./7 p.m. PT.

The press conference will take place on December 1st at 1:00 P.M. at the Los Angeles Central Public Library.

Top Bantamweight Antonio Nieves Scorches Hungary’s Szilveszter Ajtai and Sets Sights on Showdown with WBA Champ Warren

Last Saturday (November 26), Cleveland, Ohio-based bantamweight Antonio “Carita” Nieves stayed busy and kept himself in line for a cross-state showdown with Cincinnati-based WBA Bantamweight Champion Rau’shee Warren by stopping Hungary’s Szilveszter Ajtai with a single body shot.

Fighting at the Firebird Athletic Center in Bedford, Ohio, WBO #5-rated Nieves (17-0-2, 9 KOs) planted a single left hook to the Hungarian’s body at :46 seconds of round two to earn his 17th professional victory. Watch the video of the knockout HERE.

The impressive victory keeps alive Nieves’ dream of facing cross-state rival Warren in an all-Ohio bantamweight championship fight.

“The goal has always been to become a world champion,” said Nieves, post-fight. “I’d love to fight for the WBO championship and bring that belt back to the United States. The dream fight would be a unification fight with
Rau’shee Warren. I would love an all American, all Ohio match up with a great fighter like Rau’shee. We fought once in the amateurs back in 2011 when I had about four hours’ notice. He won that fight by decision in Cincinnati. While we have always respected him, the next time we meet, there will be a different result and a different winner.”

Nieves’ promoter, Dmitry Salita of Salita Promotions, says he’s happy with his fighter’s performance.

“Antonio did what he’s supposed to do as one of the world’s best 118-lb fighters,” said Salita. “That body shot he landed was one that few fighters could withstand. He’s in perfect shape and ready for his world title shot, which we are working to secure for him in the near future. I’m not sure I want Rau’shee Warren’s people to watch the video though. They may not give us the fight we really want.”

Settlement Reached Between Lucian Bute & District of Columbia Athletic Commission

A settlement has been reached between Lucian Bute and the District of Columbia Athletic Commission, several months after an initial anti-doping test result was announcement regarding traces of Ostarin found in Bute’s urine samples this past May.

Following the World Boxing Council (WBC) super middleweight world title bout between defending champion Badou Jack and challenger Bute, which ended in a draw, a positive test result was announced to the general surprise of Bute.

Since then, however, in-depth analyses has demonstrated beyond all doubt that this result was due to contamination of nutritional supplements, prescribed by Bute’s conditioning trainer and created by a laboratory in California.

All this information has been favorably received by the authorities of the Athletic Commission of the District of Columbia.

As a result of communications between the parties involved, an agreement was reached:

Lucian Bute voluntarily agrees to contribute $50,000 (USD), within a period not exceeding 90 days, to the WBC Clean Boxing Program (CBP).

Lucian Bute also agrees that his boxer license from the Athletic Commission of the District of Columbia be suspended for a period of six months, dating back to May 6, 2016.
The athletic commission therefore agrees to reject the disputed case immediately with the compromise reached between the parties and does not in any way consider that this compromise constitutes an admission on the part of Lucian Bute of the alleged facts or circumstances.

Lucian Bute intends to pay his voluntary contribution to the WBC CBP without delay and as the six-month suspension period of his boxing license from the District of Columbia ended November 6, he may now box at the place and time of his choice right now. The case is now permanently closed.

“I am extremely happy that everything is now over,” former IBF world champion Bute said. “I would like to thank my family and my spouse, Helena, all members of my team, Christian Ganescu, the Grant brothers, Groupe Yvon Michel, my manager, Al Haymon, my lawyer, Howard Jacob, and my friends, fans and supporters who were many to support me and to encourage and trust me during these dark and painful hours of my life. I would also like to thank the members of the Athletic Committee of the District of Columbia and its Chairman, Mr. Adam Weers, for listening and understanding, as well as WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman for giving me the benefit of the doubt and keeping me in the rankings of the best super middleweight challengers,”

In spite of this difficult period, Bute has continued training and he is more determined than ever to take the road back to regaining his world title. Bute is ready to face anyone who will stand between him and his goals.
“I am surrounded by the best team to guide me, ” Bute concluded. “I have, more than ever, the enthusiasm and will to fight. I have a lot of years ahead of me and I cannot wait to get back into the ring in early 2017.”

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AC Boxing Results: Seldon and Mussachio Win Decision Victories


AC Boxing Results: Seldon and Mussachio Win Decision Victories
By: William Holmes

Rising Star Promotions, a young promotional company with roots in Vineland, New Jersey, put on a six bout card at the Celebrity Theatre at the Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

Rising Star Promotions appears to understand one important ingredient to running a successful show in Atlantic City that other notable big name promoters seem to ignore, stack your card with local talent and paying fans will show up.

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The opening bout of the night was between Nick “Slick” Kisner (16-2-1) and Lamont Capers (5-8-2) in the cruiserweight division.

Kisner was considered by many to be the heavy favorite, and he had moments in the bout where he was able to outwork his opponent, but he spent too much time during the fight with his head in his opponents chest and wasn’t throwing enough punches.

Capers landed the harder shots and Kisner was deducted a point in the seventh round for holding. There were a lot of lose rounds, but the final scores were 77-74 twice for Capers, and 76-75 for Kisner.

The second bout of the night was in the bantamweight division between Leroy Davila (0-0) and Dominic Whitehurst (0-0).

“Lucious” Leroy Davila had a large contingent of fans in attendance and the difference in talent was apparent immediately. Davila showed good movement and was throwing his comibnaitons together early. He scored three knockdowns in the second round before the referee stopped the bout at 2:34 of that round.

The third fight of the night was in the heavyweight division between Soloman Maye (1-6-1) and Quian Davis (2-0-1).

Davis looked to be the younger fighter with the harder punches, but he often didn’t aggressively attack when he appeared to hurt Maye and Maye did do some decent body work throughout the bout.

When a fight is only four rounds you have to jump on your opponent when it appears you have hurt him, Davis failed to do that. The final scores were 39-37 for Davis, and 38-38 on the remaining two cards to make it a majority draw.

Quan Johnson (0-0) made his pro debut against Adrian Wilson (0-2) in the welterweight division in the next bout of the night.

Johnson had the best showing of the boxers on tonight’s card as he was able to use his power to score several knockdowns. He scored two knockdowns in the first round, with the second one coming off of a clean straight left hand. Wilson came out aggressive in the second round, but his nose was busted open by Johnson and he had blood coming out of his left eye.

Johnson could have been awarded a knockdown in the third round but the referee ruled it a slip. He scored two knockdowns in the fourth round and landed a two punch combination after the second knockdown before the referee jumped in to stop the bout.

Johnson had an impressive showing, but he looked like he was a good two weight classes heavier than his opponent. The official time of the stoppage was 2:15 of the fourth round.

Chuck Mussachio (18-3-2) made his return to the ring after a three year layoff to rematch Willis Lockett (14-16-5) in the cruiserweight division.

These two boxers met in 2008 and it resulted in a majority draw. Mussachio is not known for his knockout power, but he is a good technical boxer and he was active with his jab and was able to use his reach to keep Lockett at bay for a majority of the fight. Lockett had trouble countering Mussachio, who appeared to be in terrific shape for a boxer who hasn’t fought in three years, and Mussachio was able to pepper Lockett from the outside.

Lockett did have his moments, including a hard over the top right hand in the fifth round that surprised Mussachio, but Mussachio simply outboxed Lockett with his long reaching jab and superior footwork.

The jduges scored the bout 58-56, 59-55, and 60-54 for Chuck Mussachio.

The main event of the evening was between Atlantic City, New Jersey native Isiah Seldon (8-1) and Newark, New Jersey native Eddie Edmond.

Seldon, the son of former heavyweight champion Bruce Seldon, showed flashes of power and was able to rock Edmond several times throughout the bout. However, Seldon was wild at times and didn’t show good head movement.

Edmond was able to outwork Seldon a couple of rounds, especially the fourth rounds, but hurt himself by losing a point for holding in the fourth round and getting knocked down in the sixth round.

If Seldon wants to take a step up to the next level he will need to improve his defense and throw more combinations instead of throwing one power shot at a time, but he was still able to win the bout on the judges scorecards.

The final scores were 58-54, 59-54, and 59-53 for Isiah Seldon.

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