Boxing Insider Notebook: Top Rank, Golden Boy, Conlan, Vasquez Jr., Farmer, Eubank, and more…
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of September 13th to September 20th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Top Rank Promotions Signs Michael Conlan
Irish amateur star Michael Conlan, best known for his upset loss at the Rio Olympics that many felt he won, has signed with Bob Arum and Top Rank Promotions.
Most boxing fans will remember Conlan for giving the middle fingers to the judges and other Olympic officials after his upset loss to Russia’s Vladimir Nikitin. Top Rank will likely capitalize on the ability of Irish fighters to draw fans in droves to boxing venues.
PPV Rights Secured for Vasquez Jr. vs Lopez
Integrated Sports Media, North America’s undisputed leader of pay-per-view distribution of major boxing events, has secured the rights to for the much anticipated showdown between former world champions Wilfredo”Papito” Vazquez, Jr. and Juan Manuel “JuanMa” Lopez, headlining “Guerra En El Clemente,” Saturday night, October 8, live from San Juan, Puerto Rico.
Guerra En El Clemente: Vasquez Jr. Lopez, presented by Black Tiger Media, will be distributed by Integrated Sports Media live, starting at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, in the United States and Puerto Rico on both cable and satellite pay per view on iN Demand, DISH, DIRECTV and Vubiquity. The event will also be available to watch across Canada on Fight Network, as well as via Fite TV app for iOS and Androide devises or watch on the www.Fite.TV website. Suggested retail price is $29.95.
“We’re excited to bring North American boxing fans a true grudge match between former world champions Wilfredo Vasquez, Jr. and Juan Manuel Lopez,” Integrated Sports Media president Doug Jacobs said. “It’s also a crossroads fight with the winner most likely back as a legitimate world title contender and the loser possibly facing retirement. They really don’t like each other and sparks will be flying from the opening bell. Additional pay-per-view fights will be announced soon and with the passion of Puerto Rican fighters, we anticipate a can’t-miss show for real boxing fans.”
“I am thrilled and happy to be able to present this highly anticipated event to boxing fans in Puerto Rico and the United States,” said Carlos Maldonado, President of Black Tiger Promotions. “The response from all cable and satellite providers has been phenomenal. This fight promises to be an all-out war in the ring, non-stop action from the opening bell until the end, which could happen at any moment. No hype; these guys really don’t like each other. ”
The 12-round Vasquez, Jr. vs. Lopez main event is presented in association with Matias Entertainment and sponsored by Best Alarms and Municipio de San Juan.
Tevin Farmer Ready for All Comers
Hot junior lightweight Tevin Farmer is ready for the biggest fights between the featherweight and lightweight divisions.
Farmer of Philadelphia has won 15 fights in a row and is now ranked number-five by the WBC at 130-pounds.
In his last bout, Farmer put on a masterful performance in a virtual shutout over highly regarded Ivan Redkach on July 30 in Brooklyn, New York.
“First I want to thank Ivan Redkach for taking the fight. I really do. Because he gave me an opportunity to showcase my skills. No one else was biting. Ivan is a warrior. The fight itself was just me being me. Showing I’m one of the best fighters in the world. I took the fight at 135 because I literally can’t get a fight in my weight class. I don’t want to come off as thirsty but no one wants this work. So I had to take on a bigger and taller guy but I’m used to that. Skills are what wins fights so I was good with it.”
One fighter that Farmer is thinking about is contender Gervontae Davis. Davis has been rumored to be facing Farmer’s stablemate Jason Sosa for the WBA title.
“I would love that fight but honestly he would be a step backwards for me at this point. He’s in a good position with Floyd Mayweather and he should appreciate it. They are quietly slowing him down because they know he’s not ready. We have had our share of back and forth on social media but the ball is in his court. Sometimes the fans get fooled. A fight between us is simple to make all he has to do is tell Floyd he wants it. Floyd is the most powerful man in the sport. He could get the fight done easy. Davis came to Philly and asked to spar me. That showed me all I needed to know about Gervontae Davis. Why would we spar for free when we can get paid to fight? He doesn’t want to fight me and it’s time to move on.”
Farmer is coming home to on October 14 to fight Orlando Rizo at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia. Farmer is not looking past Rizo, but the 26 year-old native of Philadelphia is looking for the fighters between 126 and 135 pounds.
“Ivan Redkach is being handled by Leo Santa Cruz’s people. I’m glad they took the fight but they don’t seem to think much of me. So how about this…. They should let Leo use me as a tune up and comeback fight. He keeps saying he wants to fight Gary Russell. Well use me as a tune up to get ready for Russell. I will take the fight at 126, look how easy I am to negotiate with. Now let’s see if they bite on that. If not Leo my goal is win a world title at 130. So anyone ranked at 130 I’m willing to fight, it doesn’t matter who it is. But I am willing to go up or down for the right opportunities.”
Farmer is promoted by DiBella Entertainment.
Chris Eubank Jr. Vacates British Middleweight Title
Chris Eubank Jr. suffered a severe injury sparring against a 14 stone opponent two days ago. The injury was assessed and confirmed by a Doctor on Friday 16th September, who works with the British Boxing Board of Control. The unforeseeable future puts us in a position where we have to allow the remaining contenders the ability to earn a living and, more importantly, prevent the promoter incurring any further costs before a press conference takes place as they had reminded the Eubank Management team that this was the highest purse bid they had secured.
Eubank Jnr’s management team have advised that, in their opinion, there has not been a fighter in the history of British Boxing who has had such a vast chasm of fighting prowess between him and the contenders for the British Championship in ability, speed, strength, accuracy and skill since its inauguration by the Marquess of Queensbury in the 1800’s.
So vast, in fact, that when winning the challenge for British Championship, Chris Eubank Snr had to advise him to leave his opponent’s head alone as he was taking far too much punishment and the referee didn’t see what was clear to the former world champion.
Chris Eubank Jnr was advised to go to the body because of his father’s past participation in the great game. If you can disrupt your opponent’s breathing, you can effectively stop him quicker than to the head. There is strategic and tactical knowledge in the advice as well as compassion because the body can recover where the head does not always recover.
The opponent was subsequently put into an induced coma as a result of the punishment he was made to sustain.
It is now with relief, as it has become clear to Chris Eubank Jnr’s management over these past few months how much danger the health and lives of these contenders are in, therefore the relinquishing of the British Championship due to injury sustained in a sparring session is perhaps a blessing in disguise.
The severe injury to Chris Jnr’s elbow follows an ongoing injury which has been a recurring issue for the last 18 months. This allows Chris Eubank Jnr, and his management, the opportunity to relinquish the title which provides all contenders the right to earn a living and fight amongst their equal calibre of competitors.
As much as we love the tradition of the British Championship we will be forward thinking and be protective of our competition as the risk to them is real. This is seen as a positive move forward in Chris Eubank Jnr’s career.
The former world champion, Chris Eubank Snr has hospitalised men and has himself been hospitalised, and is therefore cognisant of what those outside of the ring are not.
Chris Eubank Jnr’s management team will use the injury as an opportunity to step aside and fight high calibre world competition in the coming future. Details of a press conference will follow.
Jesus Rojas and Marvin Cabrera Signs with Golden Boy Promotions
Two of the most exciting fighters to emerge from Puerto Rico and Mexico, featherweight standout Jesus Rojas, of Caguas, Puerto Rico and former amateur boxing star Marvin Cabrera of Mexico City, will join Golden Boy Promotions, the Los Angeles-based promoter announced today.
Jesus Rojas (23-1-2, 16 KOs), is scheduled to fight this Saturday, September 17 for the vacant WBA Fedecaribe Featherweight title against the tough Jesus “Chuito” Valdez (16-1-1, 6 KOs) in a scheduled 10-round fight at the Coliseo Hector Sola Bezarez in Caguas, Puerto Rico. The 23-year-old Cabrera, who is scheduled to make his professional debut on the October 7 edition of LA FIGHT CLUB, will compete in the super lightweight division and is trained and managed by former two-division world champion Daniel Ponce De Leon.
“Jesus Rojas and Marvin Cabrera are a pair of young men we’ve been watching, and now that they are in a place to transition, we are honored to be able to work with them and help bring them to the top of the sport,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “Rojas and Cabrera have all the tools to become a world champions, and in addition, they both have a rare star quality that will excite all Puerto Rican and Mexican fans in the United States and around the world.”
“I am excited to be representing Golden Boy Promotions and I am going to give it my all to get that world title,” said Jesus Rojas. “I promised my father I wouldn’t quit and although he is no longer with us, it is a promise that I will keep. I know that there will be challenges ahead, but at this point in my career, I can only think of the excitement and great things to come. I want to take care of my family and not only that, do what I’ve dreamed of doing since I was a ten year old boy fighting in the streets of my Puerto Rican neighborhood.”
“I’ve worked with Jesus Rojas since 2014, when I saw him demolish his opponent, Juan Jose Beltran via knockout,” said Javier Bustillo, Manager of Jesus Rojas. I had heard rumors of the great talent that was before me, and from the moment I started working together, I knew we struck gold. I haven’t worked with a fighter that demonstrates the amount of talent like Rojas does. Signing with Golden Boy Promotions is a dream, not just because the opportunities that will be open because of this partnership but because Rojas is going to be exposed to a whole new fan base and a whole new world of boxers who he can ravage through. He is like a gladiator in the ring, tough, a prowler, powerful, and unafraid to step up into the plate. With 23 wins, and more than half of those being knock outs – I couldn’t think of a better fighter at 126 pounds that deserves a chance to show the world what Caguas, Puerto Rico has to offer.”
“In Mexico, Golden Boy is a big company and everyone aspires to have an opportunity like this,” said Marvin Cabrera. “My dream is to become a world champion, and I think that with Golden Boy by my side, I will be able to achieve my goal. I want to thank all my fans in Mexico for all their support throughout my amateur career and I hope to keep making them proud as a professional boxer.”
Andre Ward Hosts Meet and Greet
This Friday September 16, 2016 Shoe Palace was proud to host Undefeated World Champion, SP and Jordan Brand Ambassador Andre Ward for a meet and greet at The Parks at Arlington Shoe Palace Store in Arlington, TX. Andre was autographing his top selling Jordan Brand collection which was featured throughout the store.
Robert Guerrero Hosts First Annual Amateur Fight Night
This Saturday, September 17, 2016, the first annual Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero Fight Night amateur boxing event will take place at the Galt Hight School Warrior Gym in Galt, Calif. Thirty separate bouts with fighters from California and Nevada will compete. A “Be The Match” bone marrow drive will take place from 11:00 a.m. to 1:00 p.m.
“This will be a great event for amateur fighters of all ages,” said Robert Guerrero. “I remember when I was a kid competing in events like this, all I could think about was winning a trophy of some kind. So I’m happy to announce that first and second place participants will receive an award. In addition, I’m going to do my part to help save lives by registering people into the bone marrow registry. BeTheMatch.org will be there to support the cause.”
Tickets priced at $20 will be available at the door. All proceeds will go to help fund the Guerrero’s Boxing Gym program. Weigh-ins are from 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. First fight starts 1:00 p.m