PBC on Fox Results: Garcia Stops Granados, Ruiz Stops Dimitrenko
By: Hans Themistode
What a statement!
Adrian Granados suffered the first stoppage loss of his career tonight at the Dignity Health Sports Park, in Carson California at the hands of Danny Garcia (35-2, 21 KOs). Granados is known for his aggressive come forward style, along with his granite chin but that aforementioned chin could not hold up to the power of Garcia tonight. During the build up of the fight, Garcia warned Granados that he would do what others have not, and that is stop the Chicago native.
In round one Garcia came out aggressive. He landed a monster left hand that had his opponent visibly hurt. Not to be outdone, Granados landed a few good shots of his own but it was Garcia who thoroughly dominated the action early on.
The second round for the former two division world champion was a superb one. Garcia caught his man with a huge left hook, one that Granados did not see him coming. Shortly after Granados hit the deck. He managed to make to his feet and did not seem to be in serious trouble. Garcia gave his opponent no time to relax as a right hand by Garcia landed with just a few seconds left on the clock. Again, Granados hit the deck.
After a great round two, the rest of the contest was a bit more of a balanced playing field. Garcia continued to have more success than his opponent but Granados had his moments.
Garcia landed hard shot after hard shot which in turn made Granados back peddle for the majority of the contest. Round five saw Garcia score yet another knockdown, but once again Granados managed to jump back up to his feet.
As we went to round seven, it was becoming increasingly clear that Garcia was on his way to an easy decision victory. However, that was not enough as he poured on the power shots and combination punching which forced the referee to put a halt to the contest.
Granados has never been known as a world beater, but he has always been incredibly durable. He has faced former champion Adrian Broner and current WBC title holder Shawn Porter. Although he lost both of those contest he was never in any danger of being seriously hurt. Garcia put the rest of the Welterweight division on notice. Many have written him off, thinking that his days as a contender were over but think again.
Sure, Garcia had a dominant performance tonight but he isn’t the only one who performed at a high level as both Heavyweight contender Andy Ruiz Jr (32-1, 21 KOs) and Super Bantamweight fighter Brandon Figueroa (19-0, 14 KOs) dominated their opposition as well. For Ruiz he picked up a fifth round stoppage win over Alexander Dimitrenko (41-5, 26 KOs).
Dimitrenko just had no answers for Ruiz who was the much better boxer and had his hand speed on full display. Although Ruiz was at a large deficit in terms of height and reach, it didn’t matter tonight as Ruiz quite simply beat up his larger opponent to the tune of a fifth round stoppage.
Also on the card, Brandon Figueroa not only had a dominant performance but he also picked up the interim WBA Super Bantamweight title against Yonfrez Parejo (22-4-1, 11 KOs).
The contest started off close as both men had plenty of success. Through four rounds it was anybody’s contest. The fifth round however, changed the landscape of the fight as Figueroa hurt his man. The punishment continued as the rounds went by. After eight rounds Parejo could no longer continue and was forced to withdraw from the contest.
All three men made impressive statements tonight. They have all solidified their positions as top contenders in their respective divisions.
The Other Fight this Saturday: Danny Garcia vs. Adrian Granados
By: Rahat Haque
All eyes will be turned towards Khan vs. Crawford this Saturday night at Madison Square Garden. Several articles have been written on that fight in this very site, including one by the author of this article. However, there is another fight that will take place on the same night on the other coast, in Dignity Health Sports Park, Carson, California. Danny Garcia vs Adrian Granados. While the Fox card will carry much lesser intrigue than its ESPN counterpart, it is still a match worth watching.
Danny Garcia is the bigger name, and will be drawing most of the audience for the fight. Here is a man who has worked very hard to climb up the ranks and make himself a name in the sport of boxing. But whatever Danny does, he is always seen as the underdog against legitimate opposition. His fans will remind you of that no doubt, but it is a valid criticism from the neutrals. There is something in Danny’s game that is not convincing enough to make you think he will cruise past his opponents. He was the underdog vs Khan and Matthysse. He did win both fights, but most claim the victory versus Khan to be a work of Khan’s own undoing. Similarly, most claim the victory over Matthysse as a result of the cut on Lucas’s right eye, which bothered the Argentinian slugger for most of the fight. Fans also frown upon the fact that he took too many low blows from Danny in that encounter.
Regarding Danny’s demolition jobs against Rod Salka and Paulie Malignaggi, he is again discredited as having cherry picked his opponents. The Rod Salka matchmaking was a shocker, and Malignaggi was already over the hill. Most fans looked at the latter as setting up an old man up for a devastating left hook, which is of course how things turned out. Then there were also the controversial decisions where people felt Danny got the nod. The Lamont Peterson fight was extremely close, I attended that fight live at Barclays Center as a matter of fact. I did score it for Danny, but by only one round. The Herrera fight in Puerto Rico was the much bigger controversy. The majority of the boxing world agreed that Danny was beneficiary of some home cooking.
So as Danny Garcia raked up the wins prior to his first defeat versus Thurman, it was not at all a stellar critique free resume from his end. He won all right, but fans were hesitant in giving him credit because either they disagreed with the scorecards, or they thought the opposition was too weak, or they believed he got lucky. The bubble was supposed to burst against Keith Thurman for the Philadelphia pugilist. It did. That was no surprise again to most observers. Thurman was one of the big stars at 147. But could Danny bounce back and beat Shawn Porter with his boxing skills and power? It would be an easier task than the Thurman fight, and if Danny was as good as his loyalists said he was, he should have had no problems negating the athleticism and work rate of Shawn Porter with his mix of skills and power. But he could not overcome Porter and ended up with another loss. That was the low point of Danny Garcia’s career, his boxing nadir.
Come this Saturday night, it is his chance to get back to winning ways against Adrián Granados. Even though a bigger name opposition would be preferable, at least he did not reach down to the level of boxer-cum-trainers like Rod Salka. No disrespect intended for Lightning Rod, he is very knowledgeable about the game, but he himself would tell you that he is a journeyman and was on no one’s radar when the fight between him and Danny first got announced. That is not the case with Granados. Here is a man who has quietly build himself a reputation ever since surprising Amir Imam with a TKO. Imam was considered a rising prospect until then. But does Adrián have the firepower to trouble Danny? It is unlikely. Danny has demonstrated he has a great chin versus Peterson and Rios. Some heavy punches were landed throughout the course of those fights, but none which rocked Garcia too badly. Also, if this fight should at any point turn into a shootout, Granados would not be wise to trade hooks with Garcia. Granados has guts definitely, it shows in the way he fights, and his tempo can take fighters by surprise. But what Danny has is experience and calculated power, which he can unleash when in range. If Adrián come rushing in, he is setting himself up. That will be playing into former welterweight champion’s style, where he favors being the non-aggressor. However, if Adrián chooses his moments when to be on the front foot, but also mix it up by urging Danny to come forward, à la Mauricio Herrera, it should make for an interesting fight.
The most likely outcome is an easy decision win for Garcia, where Granados gets debilitated throughout the course of the fight by Danny’s punches, but continues his charge as an aggressor, albeit with less fervor. This will be the dream sequence for Danny, where he can connect cleanly every time as a weakened Granados comes charging forward. But at the same light, it is also a banana peel for Danny. He is not one of the biggest names in the division anymore after the back-to-back defeats, but because he has crossed that fame threshold, any losses against upstarts like Granados will not look good at all! So while we hold our breaths for the Khan Crawford fight, we might as well pay attention to the fight taking place on the west coast. The more polished Danny is the overwhelming favorite, but Granados is a live underdog.
PBC Boxing on Showtime Results: Porter Edges Garcia in Thriller
By: Sean Crose
The Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York hosted the WBC welterweight title bout between Shawn Porter and Danny Garcia on Saturday before Showtime cameras. The belt, which was open due to mutli titlist Keith Thurman’s abdication, offered the opportunity for two of the biggest names in the perennially competitive welterweight division to prove who was the better man in the ring.
First on the Showtime card was a 10 round heavyweight contest between the undefeated 17-0 Adam Kownacki and former titlist Charles Martin, 25-1-1. The hard hitting Brooklyn native, by way of Poland, banged away at Martin early on in the first, with Martin offering little in the way of resistance. The second round showcased more of the same. Kownacki’s pace slowed bit in the third, but by the middle of the fourth, he had his man hurt. The bout essentially remained the same throughout the middle rounds. Martin simply didn’t look to be in the fight.
Photo Credit: Showtime TWitter Account
Stepping things up a but, Martin carried the seventh with activity. He also landed effectively in the eighth, taking his second round in a row. The ninth round was a very close affair, with both men throwing and landing hard. The fight had developed a neck and neck feel, but the early rounds might have cost Martin the fight. Regardless of outcome, the final round was absolutely explosive, with each man firing away and giving it his all. Kowacki ended up walking out of the ring with a UD victory.
Next up was a welterweight throwdown between Yordenis Ugas, 22-3, and the 34-3-2 Cesar Barrioneuevo in a scheduled 12 round elimination battle. The first was fast paced, but the discipline and sharp body work of Ugas told the tale. Barrioneuevo looked outclassed in the second and third as Ugas continued to work the body. The Cuban’s foundation and body work were showing him to be a level above his Argentine counterpart. As the fight headed into the middle rounds, it was essentially more of the same Ugas was simply proving to be the more skilled of the two fighters.
Photo Credit: Showtime Twitter Account
By the eighth, Ugas was ready to ended. The first half of the round saw the Cuban throw furiously at Barrioneuevo, though the game Barrioneuevo survived the onslaught. The fight more or less leveled out after that. Fans at the Barclays Center booed, but there was no denying the disciplined contender was carrying the fight away. Ugas simply dominated from beginning to end, but was not powerful enough to put his game opponent away (which may have had as much to do with Barrionuevo’s chin than it did Ugas’ blows). After the final bell, an obvious UD decision went Ugas’ way.
It was time for the main event. Garcia stepped into the ring with a record of 34-1, while Porter boasted a 28-2-1 resume. The first was a tight affair that Porter may have edged slightly. The second round was razor sharp, yet Garcia looked to perhaps have landed the sharper punches. Garcia landed a beautiful right early in the third, then landed a nice left a few seconds later. Garcia was also avoiding Porter’s right hook effectively. Porter came alive in the fourth, ripping into Garcia’s body. Garcia came back strong in the fifth, landing effectively to the body in his own right.
Photo Credit:Showtime Twitter Account
The sixth saw Porter upping the action. The Ohio native then began to really take it to his man in the seventh. Garcia was very game, though – and very dangerous. Garcia looked better in the eight and ninth, though Porter’s attack was fierce. The tenth was an all out war with each man throwing and landing hard. Things remained close in the eleventh, with Porter going strong to the body, but Garcia having moments of his own. Things ended close, though Garcia looked to have taken the twelfth with cleaner shots.
It was a close bout that could have went either way, but the judges ruled it for Porter with scores of 116-112, 115-113, and 115-113.
Showtime Boxing: Garcia-Porter Preview
by: Sean Crose
Shawn Porter and Danny Garcia will meet in a highly anticipated showdown Saturday night for the WBC welterweight title that was vacated by Keith Thurman. The bout will be the featured attraction on a Showtime card that will begin airing live at 9 PM Eastern Standard Time from the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York. Both Porter, 28-2-1, and Garcia, 34-1, have lost close bouts to Thurman. What’s more, this is a match which is essentially seen as an even matchup…as well as a step towards a clearer picture of the welterweight pecking order.
Photo Credit: Ryan Hafey/Premier Boxing Champions
With Thurman still holding the WBA crown, rising star Errol Spence in possession of the IBF title, and Top Rank promoted Terence Crawford owning the WBO strap, the post Mayweather era has been a bit chaotic for the welterweight division. The infrequent ring appearances of many PBC (Premiere Boxing Champions) fighters like Thurman, Spence, Garcia, and Porter, coupled with promotional and network issues between PBC and Top Rank, have made the discovery of a true welterweight king very hard to arrive at. Still, simply knowing who among the top fighters in the division can best who offers at least some sense of clarity. Stylistically, Saturday’s match between the extremely aggressive Porter and the disciplined, sharp punching Garcia, might also make for intriguing viewing.
This weekend’s card will also feature a WBC weltwerweight title elimination bout between the 22-3 Yordenis Ugas and the 34-3-2 Cesar Barrionuevo. Originally from Cuba and now living in Miami, Ugas has been on a hot winning streak since dropping two bouts in 2014. As for Barrionuevo, this will be the Argentine’s first bout on American soil, where he’s hoping to make a good impression on a road to bigger things. On top of the two welterweight battles, Showtime will also be broadcasting a heavyweight scrap from Brooklyn on Saturday night.
The 25-1-1 Charles Martin was briefly in possession of the IBF heavyweight title until he was trounced by Anthony Joshua in 2016. He’ll be on a two fight win streak when he faces the 17-0 Adam Kownacki on Saturday. Kownacki, originally of Poland, will be something of the hometown fighter, as he now resides in Brooklyn and has had numerous fights in the New York area. Having won all 17 of his bouts by knockout, he’s looking to leave his mark on the live television audience. With all but two of his own wins having been by knockout, however, Martin clearly wants re-establish himself as a top heavyweight.
Boxing guru Al Haymon’s PBC has recently signed a three-year extension with Showtime, which means top PBC bouts will be aired on Showtime for some time to come.
Danny Garcia vs. Shawn Porter Media Conference Call Transcript
Thanks everyone for joining us for this conference call for what should be an amazing, SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING card presented by Premier Boxing Champions at Barclays Center in Brooklyn on Saturday, September 8th. The main event Danny Garcia vs. Shawn Porter is for the WBC World Welterweight Championship. It’s a sensational fight, incredible match up of styles, one of the best fights you can make in the Welterweight division.
It will be the main event of the tripleheader. It will also feature Yordenis Ugas vs. Cesar Barrionuevo in a WBC Welterweight Eliminator. And also an extremely interesting and important heavyweight match up between Adam Kownacki of Brooklyn, New York by way of Lomza, Poland and Charles Martin from Carson, California, the former World Heavyweight Champion.
Obviously an effort by Charles to get back into the big picture in the heavyweight division with one big win. And for Adam an opportunity to defeat a former World Heavyweight Champion and put himself into the immediate title conversation. It’s a sensational card, tickets for the live event, which is co-promoted by my company and TGB Promotions in association with DSG Promotions. They started $50 and they are on sale now.
They could be purchased at ticketmaster.com, barclayscenter.com or by calling 1800-745-3000, they can also be purchased at the box office in Barclays Center. Fights involving Garcia and Porter rank among the highest attended and highest grossing gates for boxing at Barclays Center. So both of these fighters are basically fighting in their homes away from home.
Adam Kownacki is a huge favorite within the Polish community in the New York area. He’s a very big ticket seller and this will be his seventh fight at Barclays Center. So right now tickets are moving incredibly well. The ringsides and the better seats are good to be gone quickly. So people should get on the phone and order their tickets you know for this fight when they can and they were tickets down to $50 so this is an affordable event for everybody.
In addition to being a huge event for Brooklyn and for Barclays Center this is another string of top boxing events in major fights that would be presented by SHOWTIME under the leadership of Stephen Espinoza, doesn’t get better than this. In my mind, this is as good a premium cable fight as you could possibly make.
Again it just continues in a multi-year period of excellence for SHOWTIME. Stephen, why don’t you say a few words?
Thanks very much, Lou. September 8 will be our 26th live boxing presentation of the year. That’s 26 live boxing events this year and of those we’ve had eight matchups of top five versus top five fighters, and that’s clearly what Danny Garcia vs. Shawn Porter is – two of the top five in the welterweight division. That again will be the eighth time this year alone that that’s happened on SHOWTIME.
We’re also here to talk about the heavyweights, Adam and Charles. Adam is hugely popular with Brooklyn’s Polish community. He’s fighting at Barclays Center for the fifth time. Charles Martin is no stranger to Barclays Center either, having won his heavyweight title there on SHOWTIME back in 2016.
It’s a very intriguing crossroads fight in a division, which has certainly got a lot of attention, a lot of buzz lately. So I think you know that’s all part of a very solid card, interesting card top to bottom. I would be remiss if I didn’t also mention Amanda Serrano who is trying to become boxing’s third six-division champion when she fights Yamila Reynoso for the WBO Junior Welterweight World Championship. A little bit of everything as far as high quality fights, we are really looking forward to September 8.
Thank you Stephen, and as Stephen pointed out there is a terrific undercard featuring loads of New York talent and an incredibly significant women’s fight between Amanda Serrano and for a 140-pound belt, which would be Amanda’s sixth weight class with the title. As Stephen pointed out that would put her there with two other great male Hall of Fame level fighters and make her the first woman to hold a distinction as well as the first Puerto Rican, so that’s a very significant fight.
Let’s get started with the great heavyweight match up. I’m going to first to say a few words about a young man I’m very familiar with, born in Poland, moved to Brooklyn with his family when he was seven, two times New York Golden Gloves champion, rated in the top 10 by the WBC and number 13 by the IBF. Six round knockout recently against Iago Kiladze, he has wins over former title challenger Artur Szpilka as well as a number of other good wins with his record but really a rising young heavyweight close to his big opportunity with his biggest obstacle and a former world champion Charles Martin in front of him.
Hey thanks Lou for the introduction. I’m ready to make a statement. It’s a very big fight for me, I’m training very hard and hopefully after this fight I’ll be mentioned as a heavyweight contender. I’m thrilled to be on a great show in Barclays Center live on SHOWTIME and can’t wait. It’s definitely going to be a great night for me.
Charles Martin only lost to Anthony Joshua in April of 2016. He has couple of knock out wins since then, 6’5″, 32-year-old, top 10 by the WBC at number nine and number 15 by the BF. Charles this is a pretty immediate way to get back into the picture, if you could beat this young contender and he’s looking at you as his biggest resume mark to date. So this is a big night for you, can you say a few words?
Yes, I can’t wait. I’ve been training hard, doing what I got to do, staying focused, and I’m looking to put on a big show come September 8th and you know keep going up those rankings, trying to get back to my belts. I know it’s going to be a tough fight and that’s what I am training for, so we’ll see nothing new.
When you turned pro did you have the expectation or the confidence that you would reach this level of the sport?
My goal was always to be world champion. Winning the New York Golden Gloves was a big thing for me. So after I won that, that’s where I was looking to win the title. With every fight I inch closer so I’m training very hard to reach the dream comfortably.
Charles, what do you have left to accomplish in sport boxing.
I want to show what I can really do in the sport, so I’m just here to show people my skills and that’s what I am going to do on September 8th. I got some stuff to prove so that’s what it is.
What does fighting in New York mean to you personally?
I love it. In fact, it’s one of the best feelings. If you can make here, you can make it anywhere. So I want to continue that and keep winning in New York.
Charles do you think the winner of this fight will be right in line for a title shot?
Yes, possibly, but I’m never looking past my opponents. So I’m right on the money. I got to take care of Adam Kownacki first before anything.
What is in Adam Kownacki’s style which makes him so hard to first of all predict and then to fight?
He is just a good fighter with a lot of heart. He is winning because he is a good fighter. I’m just saying he is a good fighter.
I’m prepared for everything you can possibly think of. I’m coming to minimize everything he brings, that’s what we are working on.
Charles, could you tell us how you think you’ve improved as a fighter since facing Joshua and what lessons did you take from that fight?
Yes, I’m more mature, I’m grown. I’m a grown man. So we’re ready when I get in that ring. When I work out, when I go to training, I’m serious about what I do. I’m taking my craft seriously, so that’s what’s the difference. I’ve grown.
What do you think your advantages are over Adam in this fight?
I’ve come in to win, come in to make a statement. I’m bringing devastation.
Adam how do you view Charles as a fighter and what do you think your advantages are over him?
Well, first of all, I thank Charles Martin for pronouncing my name right, I think he is one of the few people that actually said it correctly but I will be in pressuring him all night. I’m a pressure fighter and if Charles Martin is able to give me all then I think it’s going to be a tremendous fight.
Do you want to make prediction for the fight?
I do know that it is going to be exciting. There will be lot of fireworks.
No predictions. I like to prove it and I like to show it. Let me show it, no predictions.
Charles does returning to Barclays Center bring back any special memories for you, was that part of the motivation for to take this fight?
Well as far as taking the fight it didn’t matter where we fought, but I love fighting in Brooklyn. I like the Barclays Center big stage, so I am looking forward to it.
What led you to taking the fight with Kownacki?
It’s just who we are fighting with, you got to fight somebody. I haven’t been in the ring often recently but I’ve been in camps and working every day. We have been working really hard
Adam do you feel like this is the final step towards getting that title shot or do you feel like there is more work to be done?
As you all see Charles Martin is very focused, so I’m prepared for the best Charles Martin that he brings, and I could beat the best Charles Martin and go for the title shot right after. I am looking at Charles Martin as if he still has the title, as if he is the champion, so I am ready. I am running and doing more workouts. I’m looking at Charles Martin as if he is still a champion, so by beating him it puts me right in o the title shot. He’s a contender and the former world champion so bringing a shot at title would be I think the next step in my career.
Adam and Charles I look forward to seeing you guys fight week, and now we’re going to move on to the main event of this great event on Saturday, September 8. Once again it’s 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York for the WBC World Welterweight Championship and frankly Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter don’t really need whole lot of introduction.
A lot of guys who fight Shawn obviously come away from their fights feeling that he uses his head, how much are you preparing for that and how can you kind of combat that from happening to you?
I got to go in there and fight my fight. I can’t go in there and basically get caught up in his fight. We have the right sparring partners, short guys around 5’6″ using the head, who come forward. So me and my father got the perfect game plan to get away from the head butt. So yes we have some tricks for that.
How much will you make the referee aware of that?
At the end of the day I’m not really worried about the referee, it is a fight. The referee does his job and I’m just going to do my job and that’s go in there and fight. So I’m not really worried about his head. I just have to go in there and fight my fight.
What it would mean for you if you’re able to stop him in the fight?
It will mean a lot, if you avoid the scorecard that’s always a great thing, you don’t even have the judges judge, so it will be great. I stopped people for the first time in their careers so it won’t be the first and it won’t be the last time I did it.
You’ve been involved in close decision before and I know you can’t go into a fight looking for a knockout but how imperative is it for you to try to end this fight before it goes to the cards so you don’t put yourself in those situations again?
At the end of the day, those fights are growing fights, those type of fights are what makes you a better champion and makes you a better fighter. If you win easy fight all the time you don’t know what you have to work on, you want to improve. So those type of fights show what you got to work on. So I think every fight in my career has been the right fight and I’m going to go in there and use all those fights and all the experience I have had to get this victory.
Shawn can you answer that as well?
I plan on going in there and taking care of it in the easiest way. I need to make sure I’m doing everything that I need to do to win the fight decisively and with no question at all that I am the winner.
Do you think Danny can do anything to make you not fight his fight?
I think it’s a psychological thing. I say when you are in ring with me, you know what I am going to bring, and you really got to get yourself going for that. I think a lot of times they get caught up with my work rate and my aggression and they feel like they have to counter that with the same work rate and aggression. I don’t know what game plan they have for me, but I do know that I’ll be ready for anything.
How excited were you or how did you feel when you found out you were going to get this opportunity?
It was exciting because obviously I want the world championship again, the WBC title was my title to begin with. So it was exciting when I got the call and it was all right away and it’s a fight that I like and I was excited and I said let’s get it on.
Can you talk about your point of view as this being a competition not only between yourself and Shawn but between your dad and also his dad?
We’re looking at it like another fight. We are not looking at it like your dad versus my dad. This is just Team Garcia versus his team and that’s how we always look at it. So we are just preparing ourselves, working hard every day and again we are going to do what we always do.
How difficult was it to swallow having the first defeat of your career?
It was tough, it was tough, I have a mind of a winner and honestly waking up that day I thought I was going to be the unified champion of the world. I was real confident when it came to the scorecard that I was there to win the fight because I finished the fight strong, and you know what there were a lot of close middle rounds.
He won a lot of the early rounds, but I felt like I pushed the fight, I thought I won the fight, it didn’t go my wat. That got me going again but you know mentally it was tough but you know physically it didn’t affect me, so now it is behind me in the past. I feel good, I’m motivated and this is the same Danny Garcia you want to see. So in my mind I still feel like I kind of have to go out there and prove myself.
You both lost close fights to Thurman, can you tell me how much either of you would like to get a rematch?
You know I got to get this victory first and then quite frankly, I’ll fight anybody, it doesn’t matter who it is.
Yes, I think the fight against Thurman was very, very close, and I wanted a rematch right away, but that was in 2016. At the time, it was the best fight in the division. It is still that but I’d like to see and fight some other competition first, and trust me I just love to fight.
How would you rate your performance in that fight against Brandon Rios and do you feel like you need to do better than that to beat Shawn Porter?
I’ll give myself a B, I was off a year before that. I felt like I knocked off a lot of rust, I felt like I’d be really good for being a year off and went and got the knockout, which was the goal. I felt like that was the only way to win that fight if I am knocking him out and that made me so happy so yes I’m back where I need to be and I’m active.
I’m fighting again and you know I always tell people that an active Danny Garcia is a dangerous Danny Garcia.
When you look at the welterweight division do you feel excited about new potential fights that a lot of people are already kind of fantasy matchmaking for both of you guys?
Yes, definitely, it was exciting to be in a division full of talent. If I get this belt I will fight whoever, the biggest fight, the biggest payday. I will fight anyone.
Lou, where do you rank this event at least on paper among all the other boxing cards that you’ve been a part of in Brooklyn?
We put on some amazing cards, this is another one and frankly I’m as excited about this one as I’ve been about anyone in a long, long time and I’ve said this main event is a fight that I had loved for years and it’s a fight that sort of was inevitable and it’s now happening and it’s a great fight but you know everything else on this card is important, it has significant history being made.
There’s going to be a major contender either Martin back again or Kownacki in the heavyweight division. It’s a great, great card, headlined by two great champions and Garcia and Porter, and it’s another card in the run of great cards on SHOWTIME in association with Premier Boxing Champions and another great card in the line of Brooklyn Boxing at Barclays Center. So you know it’s continuing to build those brands at the same time.
So it’s going to be a big night for boxing on September 8th, I would hope everybody joins us.
Danny how long did it take you for you to get over your loss to Keith Thurman?
It took me a little while and at the end of the day I never pictured myself on the wrong side of a decision, but it is what it is. I came back strong against Rios and did what I was supposed to against him and stop him and knock him out. The next two guys up for the title was me and Shawn and that’s how the fight got made.
Can you tell us about the success you had at Barclays Center?
Yes, definitely it is, I love Barclays Center. I opened up the building and I was the first world title fighter at Barclays Center in 2012 when I knocked Morales out. I fought many epic battles here you know against Morales, Peterson, Judah, Thurman, the list goes on.
Of course a lot of great knockouts there, you have a big fan base in Brooklyn. When I walk through the streets of Brooklyn everyone knows who I am, so that’s my home away from home. I love the atmosphere. I love the people at Barclays Center and it’s my home away from home and I’m excited.
Do you still have any potential future plans to bring a fight back to Philly?
In a perfect world after this fight I would come back and defend my title in Philly, but we got some work to do come September 8, so we got to get this victory and get the job done and then whatever’s next is next but I would love to bring something to the area.
Shawn, what makes this Danny Garcia very intriguing?
I’m aggressive. I come strong, I come fast, I come hard, and Danny is one that’s a little bit more patient. The fight is a brilliant fight. I’ve been around the block 100 times and coming back to Brooklyn we are both familiar with them and they are familiar with us.
If you want to you know the other intangibles of this fight, it’s two hard hitters, two strong guys, two young guys and that just makes for a very great intriguing fight and it will be just that.
Can you talk a little bit about the style match up, everybody has got to be different, but for both guys is there any fight from your past that kind of lays the blueprint for how this one’s going to go?
At the end of the day for a lot of people from the amateurs, the pro game, they come forward. I have to go in there and push him back and that’s what I am preparing for and that’s what I wake up every day and get my work done and to be the best that I can be, and perform the best that I can perform.
I’m going to go ahead and make adjustments like a true champion and get the victory and I think that’s what it’s all about at the end of the day.
I’m not exactly sure what’s going to happen yet but I’m sure I’ve had previous experience with whatever he brings to the ring. My experience and my knowledge in the ring is what is going to help me through that.
How much does that help you when you had those long periods of inactivity before and still been able to perform at a high level when you go into a fight like this?
If anything I’m healthier, I’m happy and I’m relaxed. I’m fully recovered for anything that I’ve been through and you know the list goes on there. I think that if anything, I’ll have fresh legs late and a fresh mind to get in the ring with Danny. I think in the past just the time in between fights has made me stay hungry. This being for a world championship title and the WBC, plus Danny Garcia is one of the top guys in his division. Everything in this fight has kept me hungry from the moment that the talk began about this fight happening and now we’re like 23 days away from the fight I think and it is coming soon.
Shawn earlier Danny said that he gave himself a B for his performance against Brandon Rios, how did you think he fought against Rios?
Honestly prior to the knockout it was a C performance for me, it was a C performance. I thought that he was not as fast and sharp as I expected him to be. If it is Shawn Porter versus Brandon Rios, I would not expect him to go that long. He found the right punch at the right time, he landed it, he knocked him down after that and that was what I needed from Danny in order for me to get in the ring and do what I did.
Danny doesn’t knock out Brandon I don’t get in the ring, and this fight may or may not be happening right now, but I’m ready.
In regard to a Keith Thurman rematch, do you put that out of your mind at this point because he hasn’t fought so long?
Yes, I put it out of my mind, and again no disrespect to Keith, but we haven’t seen him, we don’t know what Keith is going to look like when he gets back in the ring and I would hate for Keith to get back in the ring to be any less than what he was the first time we fought. There’s too many questions and this is why Shawn Porter wins the rematch right now. So I have definitely put the rematch a lot further behind me than it was prior to this fight has been announced but this is the number one thing on my mind right now.
He’s out because of me. I was the one who broke his elbow, but I just feel like I just feel like he’s not hungry no more since he unified the division. I think he reached the height in his career that he always wanted to reach.
I think he’s married now or he’s traveling the world, so his mind is not in the game. So I just don’t think he’s hungry anymore. I think he passed what he wanted to accomplish. I may be wrong but from what I see that’s how it seems to be.
Thanks for joining us everyone and we’ll see you on September 8 at Barclays Center.
Showtime Boxing Preview: Errol Spence Jr. vs. Carlos Ocampo, Roman vs. Flores
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Errol Spence Jr., a man many consider to be the world’s top welterweight and one of the world’s best pound for pound fighters, will be making his mandatory defense of his IBF Welterweight title against Carlos Ocampo. Spence will be returning to his home state of Texas to make his title defense.
This fight card will take place at the Dallas Ford Center.
The co-feature of the evening will be a WBA Junior Featherweight bout between Danny Roman and Moises Flores. Other prospects will also be appearing on the undercard including former world champion Javier Fortuna, Yordenis Ugas, Roberto Marroquin, and Stephen “Scooter” Fulton.
Photo Credit: Premier Boxing Champions Twitter Account
The following is a preview of the televised fights.
Danny Roman (24-2-1) vs. Moises Flores (25-0); WBA Junior Featherweight Title
The opening bout of the night is between Danny Roman and Moises Flores for the WBA Junior Featherweight Title.
Roman is twenty eight years old and three years younger than his opponent, but will be giving up three and a half inches in height and an inch and a half in reach. Roman is also the lesser puncher of the two. Flores has seventeen stoppages in his career compared to the nine stoppages that Roman has.
Neither boxer has a notable amateur career to discuss.
Roman has been more active than Flores. He fought once in 2018, twice in 2017, and four times in 2016. Flores only fought once in 2017, and one round at that against Guillermo Rigondeaux, and once in 2016.
Flores lone blemish on his record was a no contest against Guillermo Rigondeaux, but he was getting badly beaten at the time and the referee actually originally ruled it a stoppage victory for Rigondeaux before it was later reviewed and ruled a no contest due to punches landing after the final bell. Flores has beaten the likes of Paulus Ambunda, Luis Cusolito, and Oscar Escandon.
Roman had to travel to Japan to win the WBA title. He has defeated the likes of Ryo Matsumoto, Shun Kubo, Adam Lopez, and Christian Esquivel.
Flores long layoff, which includes a very brief encounter with Guillermo Rigondeaux, will hurt him against a younger opponent. Roman isn’t known for his power, but his last loss was on 2013 and he has won sixteen fights in a row.
Roman likely won’t win by stoppage, but he should win a decision.
Errol Spence Jr. (23-0) vs. Carlos Ocampo (22-0), IBF Welterweight Title
Errol Spence is one of the top stars in the welterweight division and has held the IBF title since his thrashing of Kell Brook in May of 2017.
He’s looking for a big fight and a matchup with either Terrance Crawford or Keith Thurman is a fight that most fight fans are looking forward to. However, he first has to take on his mandatory challenger, on paper a clearly overmatched Carlos Ocampo.
Spence is a tall, rangy southpaw, and is in the midst of his prime at 28 years old. Ocampo has been relatively unchallenged as a professional and is only 22 years old.
Spence had a highly successful amateur career and competed in the 2012 Summer Olympics. Ocampo experienced some success on the Mexican amateur circuit, but not on world circuit.
Spence also has the edge in power. He has twenty stoppages on his record, including ten wins in a row. Ocampo only has thirteen stoppages to his record, and only has one stoppage win in his past four fights.
Spence has beaten the likes of Lamont Peterson, Kell Brook, Leonard Bundu, Chris Algieri, Chris Van Heerden, Phil Lo Greco, and Ronald Cruz. Spence fought once in 2018, once in 2017, and twice in 2016.
Ocampo’s biggest victories to date were over Jorge Paez Jr. and Charlie Navarro. He has never fought outside of Mexico. He fought twice in 2017 and three times in 2016.
Spence should win this bout relatively easily, and will likely get another stoppage victory.
HBO Boxing Preview: Miller vs. Duhaupas, Jacobs vs. Sulecki
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York will showcase two fights to be broadcast on HBO’s World Championship Boxing Series. Daniel Jacobs, who took Gennady Golovkin the distance and is considered by many to be one of the top middleweights of the country, will take on Maciej Sulecki in a WBA Middleweight Eliminator in the main event of the evening.
The co-main event will feature another WBA Eliminator, but this time in the heavyweight division, as rising Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller will take on Johan Duhaupas.
The undercard will also feature a WBA/IBF Women’s Lightweight Title unification between Katie Taylor and Victoria Bustos which may get some mention on the HBO broadcast
The following is a preview of the two planned telelvised fights.
Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller (20-0-1) vs. Johan Duhaupas (37-4); WBA Heavyweight Eliminator
Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller is one of the top talents in the heavyweight division. He previously competed in both boxing and MMA and was very successful in it. In fact he was undefeated for three years in kickboxing before turning pro as a boxer. He was also a finalist in the NY Golden Gloves Championship as an amateur.
Miller is in the midst of his prime and approximately eight years younger than Johan Duhaupas. Both boxers have been fairly active recently. Miller fought twice in 2017 and three times in 2016. Duhaupas has also been very active, which is surprising for a man his age. He fought three times in 2017 and three times in 2016.
Miller usually towers over his opponents, but he will be giving up one inch in height and about four and half inches in reach to Duhaupas. Both boxers have experienced recent success. Nine of the last ten opponents that Miller has fought were defeated by stoppage. Four of the past five fights that Duhaupas has fought resulted in a stoppage victory.
Miller has defeated the likes of Mariusz Wach, Gerald Washington, Fred Kassi, Donovan Dennis, and Joey Dawejko. Miller has never been defeated.
Duhaupas has defeated the likes of Jarno Rosberg, Robert Helenius, and Manuel Charr. His losses were to Alexander Povetkin, Deontay Wilder, Erkan Teper, Francesci Ouabeti.
When you compare Miller’s age, strength, and willingness to test himself against good competition in both boxing and MMA to Duhaupas; it becomes clear that Miller should be the heavy favorite in this fight. He could prove a tough challenge for either Joshua or Wilder in the near future.
Daniel Jacobs (33-2) vs. Maciej Sulecki (26-0); WBA Middleweight Eliminator
When Canelo tested positive for clenbuterol, even though he claimed tainted meat as the culprit, many boxing writers placed Daniel Jacobs as the #2 guy in the middleweight division mainly based on his extremely close match with Gennady Golovkin.
His opponent, Maciej Sulecki, is relatively unknown to the American audience but has never tasted defeat.
Jacobs has the better amateur career of the two. He won the National Golden Gloves Tournament as a middleweight and was a US National Champion as an amateur.
Sulecki will have about an inch and a half height advantage on Jacobs on Saturday night, but Jacobs will have a rather large five inch reach advantage. Jacobs will also have a large power advantage. He has stopped twenty nine of his opponents while Sulecki has only stopped ten.
Jacobs two losses were a shocking upset to Dmitry Pirog and a close defeat to current middleweight kingpin Gennady Golovkin. He has defeated the likes of Luis Arias, Sergio Mora, Peter Quillin, Caleb Truax, Jarrod Fletcher, and Ishe Smith. Sulecki has never tasted defeat and has defeated the likes of Jack Culcay, Damian Bonelli, Hugo Centeno Jr., and Grzegorz Proksa.
This fight looks like a mismatch. Jacobs is fighting an opponent who has never faced the level of opposition of him in his hometown who doesn’t have knockout power.
PBC on Showtime Results: Danny Garcia Knocks Out Rios, Benavidez and Ugas Victorious
By: Ken Hissner
Saturday February 17th USA Showtime featured three bouts all worthy of main event status with former champions Garcia and Rios in the main event. The event was held at the Mandalay Bay Hotel & Casino Event Center in Las Vegas, NV.
Former 2-Division Champion Philadelphia’s Danny “Swift” Garcia, 34-1 (20), stopped former WBA World Lightweight Champion Brandon “Bam Bam” Rios, 34-4-1 (24), of Oxnard, CA, at 2:25 of the ninth round in an exciting fight from start to finish. Garcia’s stoppage was the highlight of the night of three great fights!
In the first round Garcia had his way for the most part with the quicker punches and foot work with Rios coming forward as always. In the second round it was Rios pressing and landing more than Garcia through the first half of the round. Garcia started using his jab and throwing combinations to offset the fast start by Rios. In the third round Garcia landed a double left hook to the body of Rios. As Rios pushed Garcia to the ropes Garcia landed half a dozen punches. Rios came back driving Garcia to the ropes with Garcia jabbing his way out of trouble. Rios landed a hard right hand to the chin of Garcia. Just under a minute Rios landed a hard overhand right to the side of the head of Garcia. Garcia came back with a hard right to the chin of Rios. The fans really got into the action.
In the fourth round the boxer-puncher Garcia countered well but the aggressive Rios was backing Garcia up. Garcia landed a good right uppercut to the body but Rios came back with a good right to the chin. With last than half a minute left Garcia rocked Rios. In the final 20 seconds Garcia hurt Rios with a right to the chin. The action was fast and furious. In the fifth round Garcia rocked Rios with a right hand only to have Rios come back with a right uppercut to the chin of Garcia. Garcia landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Rios. In the final minute of the round Garcia gave Rios a wicked body beating. Garcia rocked Rios with a left uppercut to the chin at the bell.
In the sixth round Rios landed a solid short right to the chin of Garcia. At the halfway point Rios had Garcia on the defense. Rios countered a Garcia right with a right to the chin of his own. It was a big round for Rios. At the halfway point of the fight it looked even. In the seventh round Rios was driving Garcia around the ring with Garcia doing his best to keep him off with a jab and landed a good right to the chin with a minute left in the round. With half a minute left in the round Garcia was moving well and landing well. Garcia may have stolen the round at the end.
In the eighth round Garcia landed a 3-punch combination. Rios came back with good body work. At the halfway mark Garcia landed quick left hooks to the body of Rios. Rios pinned Garcia to the ropes but was countered well by Garcia. There was action right up to the end of the round. In the ninth round Garcia boxed well and at the halfway point Garcia rocked Rios with right hands. Out of nowhere came a powerful right cross by Garcia dropping Rios hard to the canvas. As Rios beat the count he was asked by referee Kenny Bayless to step forward and it was obvious Rios was finished making Bayless to wisely call a halt.
“I first want to thank God and Al Haymon and my dad when of the best trainers in the world. I want to thank my family. I noticed he was open in the middle of the ring when I landed that punch to drop him. I would like to have a rematch with Keith Thurman but that’s up to him (has a fight in May),” said Garcia. Unfortunately Shawn Porter got into the ring while Garcia was being interviewed by Jim Gray causing a shouting match back and forth. Garcia got the best of that shouting match.
The judges had Garcia in front 78-74 from Dave Moretti and 77-73 by Steve Weisfeld and Glenn Trowbridge. This writer had Garcia in front 77-75 taking the last two rounds big. Garcia’s power proved to be the difference. He and Thurman are on a collision course for a rematch in what is possibly the most talented division in boxing today.
Philadelphia southpaw “The New” Ray Robinson, 24-3 (12), was knocked down twice losing in an upset to Cuban Yordenis Ugas, 21-3 (10), out of Miami, FL, at 1:05 of the seventh round with Ugas becoming No. 2 in the IBF rankings.
In the first round Robinson’s jab keeps Ugas on the defense though coming forward. A right from Ugas to the chin of Robinson drops him. Whether he stepped on Robinson’s foot it wasn’t clear. Both boxers landed solid exchanges bringing the fans cheering. In the second round Ugas kept stalking Robinson landing a lead right to the chin of Robinson. Robinson came back using a good jab keeping Ugas honest. In the third round Robinson missed with a right hook and got countered to the body by Ugas. Ugas landed an overhand right followed by a left jab keeping Robinson from countering.
In the fourth round Ugas lands right leads to the head of Robinson. Ugas landed a combination to the mid-section of Robinson. Ugas landed at the bell with a right while Robinson landed a punch after losing a point after dropping Ugas. In the fifth round Robinson is not doing well with the left hand keeping the jab on the most part to score points. Ugas is landing well with the rights to the head of Robinson.
In the sixth round Robinson started landing the left more but Ugas seemed to get the better with his right hand. Just prior to the bell Ugas landed a hard right to the chin of Robinson causing Robinson to complain to referee Robert Byrd. In the seventh round a powerful wide right hand to the chin dropped Robinson. He got up but on shaky legs. Ugas jumped on him landing a flurry of punches causing referee Byrd to stop the fight with Robinson throwing the last two punches. Robinson complained to the stoppage by Byrd. Ugas was ahead at the end on all the judges scorecards.
In the co-feature WBC World Super Middleweight Champion David “El Bandera Roja” Benavidez, 20-0 (17), of Phoenix, AZ, in a rematch with Romanian Ronald Gavril, 18-3-1 (14), out of Las Vegas, NV, pitched a shut out in what was an exciting brawl over 12 rounds.
In the opening round it only took Benavidez 10 seconds to land a right after a jab to the head of Gavril. This was a rematch from Benavidez winning a split decision over Gavril. Benavidez was landing right hands to the head of Gavril. With a minute left in the round Gavril landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Benavidez. Benavidez using a good jab and a follow-up right had a good round. In the second round Benavidez controlled with his jab. It took Gavril a minute into the round to land a solid right to the head of Benavidez. Gavril was pressing forward but getting countered well by Benavidez. Benavidez is landing a hard right almost at will in the last 20 seconds of the round.
In the third round it took 20 seconds when Benavidez hurt Gavril with a powerful right hand to the chin. Benavidez landed a good left uppercut to the chin of Gavril. Gavril out of frustration pushed Benavidez back without warning from referee Russell Mora. Benavidez landed a 3-punch combination having his way with Gavril. In the fourth round Gavril came out aggressively and got caught with a right hand and left hook that had him almost out on his feet as he was driven into the ropes. Gavril at the halfway point of the round fought back but Benavidez answered with rights to the head. Benavidez landed half a dozen punches without return from Gavril. Benavidez ended the round bouncing right hands off the head of Gavril.
In the fifth round halfway through the first minute of the round Benavidez landed a solid right to the head of Gavril. Not only was Benavidez quicker but punched harder. With 20 seconds left in the round it was Gavril landing a combination with the right to the head of Benavidez rocking him. In the sixth round Benavidez continued to dominate Gavril up to the final minute before Gavril came back on solid punches of his own. Benavidez came back near the end of the round as the fight started to heat up even more.
In the seventh round it turned into a battle with Benavidez still getting the best of it though Gavril got in some right hands to the head. In the eighth round Gavril comes out throwing more punches through the first minute of the round but got caught with several uppercuts from Benavidez. It turned into a war in this round. For the first time in the fight Benavidez backed into the ropes allowing Gavril to throw punches. Benavidez smiled and started punching Gavril backwards with solid combinations highlighted by a left uppercut to the chin. The fans loved the action.
In the ninth round Benavidez came out with triple jabs followed by a right to the head of Gavril. Gavril’s corner is yelling “show us something Ron.” He has been taking a beating in this round from Benavidez. With less than a minute left in the round Gavril tries landing punches but Benavidez answers with more fire power. Gavril’s nose was bleeding at the end of the round. In the tenth round Benavidez was having his way up until the halfway point when a game Gavril flurried until a solid right from Benavidez to the chin stopped Gavril’s offense. It looked like Benavidez was wondering how Gavril is still standing at the end of the round. The ring physician checked Gavril between rounds.
In the eleventh round Gavril continues to come forward looking for that one punch knowing he is way behind on points. Benavidez has kept his hands to his side the entire fight but his quickness of hand he still beats Gavril to the punch. He ends the final 20 seconds painting the face of Gavril with his jab. In the twelfth and final round Benavidez keeps ahead backing up landing his jab. At the halfway point it was Gavril rocking Benavidez with a solid right to the head. Just under a minute left in the fight Gavril backs up Benavidez into the ropes with a flurry of punches. Gavril knows he needs a knockout and he is doing his best to land that punch. The fans loved this one with both fighters giving them their monies worth. Gavril was marked up at the end but what a gallant effort on his part taking twice as many punches than he landed.
Judge Julie Lederman had it 119-109 while Robert Hoyle and Glenn Feldman had it 120-108 as did this writer.
“I kept punching (questioned about hand injuries) for I am a warrior. I want to thank Al Haymon and my team (then went into Spanish thanking the Mexican fans for their support),” said Benavidez.
PBC on Showtime Preview: Garcia vs. Rios, Benavidez vs. Gavril, Ugas vs. Robinson
By: B.A. Cass
On Saturday, February 17, Premier Boxing Champions brings us a tripleheader that includes an IBF eliminator fight and the title shot for WBC Super Middleweight belt. The SHOWTIME coverage is set to begin at 10 PM EST.
The main event will be between the matched Danny Garcia and Brian Rios. The co-main event will the rematch between David Benavidez and Ronald Gavril. And the first televised fight will be between Yordenis Ugas and Ray Robinson.
Photo Credit: Stephanie Trapp/Showtime
Yordenis Ugas (20-3) vs. Ray Robinson (24-2); Welterweight
After losing to Shawn Porter in 2010, Robinson has stacked up 13 consecutive wins. The talent he has faced has not been exceptional. Nevertheless, he will step into the ring on Saturday night feeling supremely confident. “I’m an old-school fighter,” he said on Wednesday at the House of Blues at Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas. “I love fighting guys that look good on paper and nobody knows who’s going to win and it’s up to his camp and my camp. I haven’t been this excited for a fight in a long time.” Robinson expects Ugas to give him hell, and he expects to give him hell back.
The Cuban-born Ugas, who fights out of Miami, rose to some prominence after winning bronze at the 2008 Olympics. As a professional, he has suffered three losses. “I know what’s at stake,” he said on Wednesday. “It is the biggest fight of my career.”
This is about as even as boxing fights get. Robinson is 32; Ugas is 31. And neither fighter can claim a significant height or reach advantage.
However, the prize for winning is essentially an opportunity to meet defeat: this is an IBF 147-pound eliminator, and the victor will face Errol Spence Jr.
David Benavidez (19-0) vs. Ronald Gavril (18-2); Super Middleweight
When Benavidez defeated Gavril last September by split decision, he won the WBC Super Middleweight title and became the youngest ever world champion in the super middleweight division. “Winning the title changed my confidence but it changed my work too,” he said on Wednesday at the press conference for the fight. “Now I know everybody is gunning for my title and I don’t want to let it go. All the work and sacrifice it took for me to get this – I’m not going to let it go.”
One of only two men who has gone the distance with Benavidez, the older Gavril (he’s got ten years on Benavidez) surprised a lot of fight fans last time around. It was a close fight. Gavril got rocked in the eleventh round but came back the twelfth round with a blow that knocked Benavidez on his ass. As a late replacement, Gavril had only four weeks to prepare for his first fight with Benavidez. He had a full ten-week training camp this time around. If he wins, he’ll be able to bring WBC belt back to his home country of Romania. “I’m not looking for a knockout,” he said on Wednesday. “I’m looking to win every round.”
Benavidez doesn’t intend to give up his championship belt. “I don’t think Gavril can do any better than he did in the last fight. He’s a one trick pony and he doesn’t have many tricks left. He’s getting old.”
The WBC did not mandate this fight, which means Benavidez took it willingly. There can be only one reason for that: he wants to put all doubts about his supremacy to rest. “I’m thinking it will be a knockout around Round 5,” he said. “It’s going to be a combination of the body and chin.”
Danny Garcia (33-1) vs. Brandon Rios (34-3-1); Welterweight
Garcia is still talking about Keith Thurman, who delivered Garcia his only professional loss. “I don’t blame Keith Thurman for not wanting to fight me again,” he said at the press conference Wednesday. “I wouldn’t want to fight me two times in a row.” Garcia hasn’t fought since losing to Garcia, which means when he steps into the ring he’ll be coming off an 11-month hiatus. He has an opportunity to impress, and he doesn’t intend to lose.
After being by dominated by Timothy Bradley Jr. in 2015, Rios retired from the sport. However, he came back 19 months later to defeat Aaron Herrera. Rios took a lot of shots before he finally KO’d Herrera. If he’s smart, Garcia will look to exploit this vulnerability.
Although Garcia is the clear favorite, Rios isn’t coming for just a paycheck. He a pressure fighter and knows how to make necessary adjustments. He’s ready to fight, and he’s excited to face Garcia. “One thing I like is he doesn’t move or run,” Rios said of Garcia. “He likes to bang it out, and that suits my style better. But if he does run, we’ll be ready for that too.”
Follow B.A. Cass on Twitter @WiththePunch
Five Fighters to Watch in 2018
By: Eric Lunger
As the final wrapping paper gets cleaned up from under the tree, and as we collectively vow – in varying degrees of enthusiasm and conviction — to get back to sensible eating and exercise, it’s time to take a glance ahead at the upcoming year in boxing, and count down the top five fighters to keep an eye on. This is a pretty eclectic list, and no doubt you have your own picks; I’d love to read which boxers you are watching for 2018 in the comments below.
Photo Credit: WBSS
Joseph Parker (Heavyweight). The Kiwi WBO champion had a great 2017, defending his newly-won belt twice. In May, he took care of business against Razvan Cojanu, a late-minute replacement in a not-so spectacular bout, but in September, Parker traveled to Manchester, UK, to take on the talented contender Hughie Fury. Parker (24-0, 18 KOs) answered a lot of questions that night, and won over some critics. Still, there are some commentators who feel that Parker is the odd man out in the top tier of the division, that he doesn’t really belong in the same rarified air as Anthony Joshua, Deontay Wilder, and Tyson Fury. But with his power, his hand speed, and most importantly, his meteoric learning curve each and every outing, Parker can be a real spoiler in the division. Will he get a shot at AJ in 2018? That is tough to envision, given Team Joshua’s current aversion to risk, but as the WBO Champion, unification of the belts has to go through Parker at some point.
Oleksandr Usyk (Cruiserweight). Usyk (13-0, 11 KOs) fought on the same Olympic team as Vasyl Lomachenko, training with Lomachenko’s father, and it shows in Usyk’s footwork and use of angles. Already WBO world champion, the Ukrainian southpaw is in the semi-finals of the World Boxing Super Series Cruiserweight tournament, slated to take on undefeated WBC champion Mairis Breidis in Riga, Latvia, on January 27. Supremely confident, Usyk is one of those few European amateurs who understands that the professional game is about more than just scoring points; a fighter needs to be exciting to watch if he wants to build his fan base. With knockout artist Murat Gassiev and Yunier Dorticos in the other semi-final in February, the WBSS tournament is exciting and dynamic, and Usyk has to be the favorite to unify all the belts and lift the Muhammad Ali Trophy.
Javier Fortuna (Lightweight) A southpaw from the Dominican Republic and former WBA World champion at junior lightweight, Fortuna (33-1-1, 23 KOs) has an important title shot this coming January against undefeated IBF lightweight champion Robert Easter, Jr. Fortuna is an underdog in this fight, to be sure, but the matchup will be competitive and entertaining. The Dominican standout is a risk-taker, and he can get caught. But he is also brilliant to watch, especially when he makes intuitive adjustments in the ring or decides to ramp up the performance aspect of his game. This will be no easy tune-up for Easter, and Fortuna should not be overlooked as a potential upset of the year.
Danny Garcia (Welterweight). Garcia (33-1, 19 KOs) has always been one of my favorite fighters. A guy with deep Philly roots, he’s had tough battles with the likes of Amir Khan, Zab Judah, Lucas Matthysse, Paulie Malignaggi, and Keith Thurman. Danny is an accurate counterpuncher whose risky style is based on one of the most dominant left hooks in the game. The split decision loss to Thurman last March had to be a bitter pill for the proud Garcia to swallow. How does a fighter who has accomplished so much in the sport find the motivation to rebound from a loss like that? We will find out where Garcia is mentally and physically this February 17 as he takes on Brandon Rios (34-3, 25 KOs) in a twelve-round welterweight clash.
Vasyl Lomachenko (Junior Lightweight). Obviously, the slick Ukrainian southpaw is on top of the boxing world right now, and is a factor in everyone’s pound-for-pound discussion, but the real unknown for Lomachenko in 2018 is: whom should he fight next? Who will give him a challenge? Who will draw a big audience? Miguel Berchelt (32-1 28 KOs), who holds the WBC belt, seems like the logical next opponent for “HiTech,” but a case can certainly be made for Francisco Vargas (24-1-2, 17 KOs) or even Gervonta Davis (19-0, 18 KOs). There has also been significant social media chatter about Lomachenko moving up to 135 to fight Mikey Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs), and what a fight that would be. Unfortunately, for now, Garcia has moved to junior welterweight to face Sergey Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs) for the IBF title. Regardless, Lomachenko remains a fighter to watch in 2018.
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.”
Crawford and Garcia Continue to Move Up in Weight
By: Ken Hissner
The latest is that Terrence “Bud” Crawford, 32-0 (23) who defended his WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO super lightweight titles in August knocking out Julius Indongo, 22-0, in Lincoln, NEB, in his 6th defense and as the WBO lightweight champion had two defenses will be moving up to welterweight.
The WBO is placing him as their No. 1 contender ahead of former champion Manny Pacquiao who lost a bad decision to WBO champion Jeff Horn in July. “He will relinquish his title and he wants the WBO to classify him at No. 1 at welterweight,” said President Valcarcel. This was voted on and passed.
Horn will be allowed to make a December 13th defense against the No. 10 contender Gary “Hellraiser” Corcoran, 23-1, of the UK, which radically shakes up the welterweight division and appears to shut out former champion Pacquiao of a Horn rematch. The December title fight winner will have 90 days to defend against Crawford.
As the WBO lightweight champion Crawford won the title from Ricky Burns in Glasgow in March of 2014. In June of that year he defeated Yuri Gamboa, 23-0 in June and Ray Beltran 29-6-1 in November. He then moved up to super lightweight winning the vacant WBO World title over Thomas Dulorme 22-1 in April of 2015. In October he defeated Dierry Jean 29-1, in February of 2016 Hank Lundy, in July defeated WBC champion Viktor Postol 28-0, in December John Molina Jr, 29-6, in May of 2017 Felix Diaz 19-1 and in August Indongo.
What will be interesting is that the other welterweight champions are Keith “One Time” Thurman, 28-0, the WBA & WBC champion, and Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr., 22-0, the IBF champion. There has been talk of the two of them unifying their titles.
While Crawford is moving up so is Mikey Garcia, 37-0 (30), the new WBC lightweight champion who defeated Dejan Zlaticanin, 22-0, for that title in Las Vegas in January. In July he won a non-title fight over the former WBA super lightweight champion Adrien Broner, 33-2, in Brooklyn who is now No. 8 in the WBC super lightweight rankings for Crawford’s title.
Garcia won the WBO World featherweight title in January of 2013 over Orlando Salido, 40-11-2, and in June made a defense over Juan Manuel Lopez, 33-2. He then moved up to take the WBO World super featherweight title in November defeating Roman Martinez, 27-1-2, and in January of 2014 over Juan Carlos Burgos, 30-1-2. He then took off over two years coming back in July of 2016 in order to get out of a managerial contract defeating Elio Rojas, 24-2, before winning the WBC lightweight title. His camp has talked about moving up to super lightweight and with Crawford vacating it wouldn’t take much for Garcia to fight for a title at that weight class.
The only dual champions at this time are Gennady “GGG” Golovkin who holds three of the middleweight titles, Thurman two of the welterweight titles, “A.J.” Anthony Joshua two of the heavyweight titles and Ryan Burnett two of the bantamweight titles.
These Three Hold the Future of Philadelphia Boxing in Their Hands
By: Ken Hissner
At the end of this article this writer will talk about the three boxers in Philadelphia who hold the future of Philly boxing in their hands!
For some time Philadelphia writers, trainers, boxers and promoters have said Philadelphia is the “boxing capitol of the world!” Currently Philadelphia does not have a world champion. Only seven of Philadelphia’s boxers are in the WBA, WBC, WBO and IBF ratings.
The most recent world champion was Danny “Swift” Garcia, 33-1 (19), who is currently now ranked No. 2 by both the WBC and WBA. He lost his WBC welterweight title by split decision to WBA champion Keith Thurman in March and hasn’t fought since. His manager is Al Haymon and his promoter is Golden Boy Promotions. He is trained by his father Angel Garcia at their DSG gym in North Philadelphia.
Steve “USS” Cunningham, 29-9-1 (13), the former two-time cruiserweight champion is listed at No. 15 by the IBF. He recently lost a lack luster decision. No one keeps in better condition than “USS” does. Newark, NJ, is having a cruiserweight title match and the opponent is a former opponent of his. “USS” should be on that show! He is trained by Naziim Richardson and promoted by Main Events.
Jesse “Hard Work” Hart got his opportunity recently coming off the canvas early in the fight but made a strong second half finish in losing but will probably keep his No. 1 WBO status among super middleweights but isn’t ranked anywhere else. How can that be? If he comes down to earth after that loss he still has potential to be a world champion but you can’t split his time between two gyms with two different trainers and expect results! It’s Fred Jenkins, Sr. at the ABC Recreation Center in North Philly and it’s his father Eugene “Cyclone” Hart in Joe Hand’s South Philly gym.
Super welterweight Julian “J Rock” Williams, 23-1-1 (15), lost in a WBC title attempt in December of 2016 to Jermell Charlo but is still ranked No. 6 in the WBC, No. 9 in the IBF and No. 15 in the WBO. He is still young and still has a future. Stephan “Bread Man” Edwards is his manager and trainer at Shuler’s Gym in West Philly.
Welterweight southpaw “The New” Ray Robinson, 24-2 (12) due to inactivity has dropped in the ratings but is still No. 10 in the WBO, No. 11 in the IBF and No. 13 in the WBC. He can make anyone look bad. So why doesn’t the Garcia people consider a Philly bout with him? He is trained by “Bozy” Ennis at “Bozy’s Dungeon” in North Philly. He is managed by David McWater.
“Hammerin” Hank Lundy, 28-6-1 (14), is No. 10 in the WBC lightweight rankings and has fallen to the “Philly Jinx” on more than one occasion. He’s 3-3 in his last 6 fights. “Cornbread” Ramsey was back in the corner last fight. He trains out of the Marion Anderson Gym in South Philly. Tevin “American Idol” Farmer, 25-4-1 (5), is No. 2 in the WBC, No. 5 in the IBF and No. 9 in the WBO. Coming off an injury he should be ready to go again soon. Marc Cipparone is his manager while “Chino” Rivas trains him in Cherry Hill, NJ.
Now let’s get to the “future” of Philadelphia. The best prospect since 1984 Gold Medal Olympia is welterweight Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 15-0 (13), who at age 20 is on the verge of stepping up the competition. Promoting his fights with Victory Promotions is Chris Middendorf who has him either in Philly October 21st or in DC October 14th. To have him in fifteen fights in eighteen months is impressive. He was an Olympic Alternate in 2016. His father “Bozy” trains him at “Bozy’s Dungeon” North Philly Gym over the Harrowgate Gym.
Bantamweight Christian Carto, 12-0 (11), finally got some rounds in this past week in the main event defeating a 14-1 Mexican opponent. He has had twelve fights in fifteen months of boxing and is a former National Golden Gloves Champion. He lost his manager recently to a death and still doesn’t have a promoter. His trainer is Mickey Rosati, Jr. whose gym Carto trains at over Rosati’s Auto Repair garage. He’s had ten fights with Hard Hitting Promotions and two with King’s Promotions. He’s one white boxer that even the most negative black boxing people love him in Philly.
The third is a 17 year-old super lightweight named Brandon Pizarro, 8-0 (4), who will be turning 18 this month. “Gifted” is a crowd pleaser trained by “Bozy” Ennis and his father Angel Pizarro, Sr. at “Bozy’s Dungeon” in North Philly. He is promoted by Hard Hitting Promotions.
On Sunday October 18th John DiSanto is holding his 8th Annual “Briscoe Awards” where most of these boxers along with this writer will be in attendance. It will be held at the Xfinity Live facility at 1100 Pattison Avenue in South Philly.
Hank Lundy: “I’d beat Broner and Garcia”
Hank Lundy: “I’d beat Broner and Garcia”
By: Ben Sutherland
It’s February 27th, 2016. It’s the 5th round at Madison Square Garden. After some early success in the fight, Hank Lundy is up against the ropes as Terrence Crawford tees off. The referee decides he has seen enough and jumps in. The fight is over.
“That fight was stopped too early” says an incensed Hank Lundy, “I was still throwing back. They knew how dangerous I was and the ref stopped it as soon as he could”. Speaking a year and a half on from that fight, the loss clearly still cuts deep for the man from Philadelphia. His mean competitive streak burns at him for another shot at a world title.
Following the Crawford fight, Lundy has had a couple of comeback fights. He made relatively light work of both John Delperdang and Daniel Evangelista Jr to take two comfortable wins. But now he is back and ready for another shot at the big time, “Hammerin Hank is back and better than ever” he says.
It was in an encounter with the high school bully that left the bully asleep on the ground, that Hank first realized that he could fight. His uncle also quickly realized the potential that a young Lundy harbored and immediately got him into the boxing gym. Lundy sacrificed a partial college football scholarship so his family could afford to send his sister to college. “I told them I’d find another way” says Lundy, and boxing proved to be exactly that.
He had a promising amateur career, finishing runner up at the 2005 national Golden Gloves and then another runner up spot at the Pan-Am championships. In 2006, Lundy turned pro signing with Jimmy Burchfield and Classic Entertainment sports. Fighting primarily out of New England, Lundy stormed through his early fights which allowed him to carve out a strong reputation. His brave and aggressive fighting style made him exciting to watch and it wasn’t long before the big time came calling.
Lundy’s first big test came against the feared Viktor Postol. “When my promoter comes to me and asks if I want a hard fight or an easier option, I take the hard one every time” says Lundy. Lundy flew over to Postol’s native country of Ukraine and took him all 12 rounds, losing a decision on enemy turf. This set him up for his world title shot against Terrence Crawford. A loss that hit him hard, but by no means broke the man from South Philly for who sadly, adversity is nothing new.
His thoughts now turn to another world title shot. True to his fearless nature, Lundy doesn’t care who he fights, he just wants a world title. Lundy has a keen eye on the upcoming clash between Adrien Broner and Mikey Garcia. Lundy was called in to spar by both camps but he refused, “they just want to get a better look at me” he says, “They know I’d beat both of them, everyone is running scared of me”.
Hammerin Hank Lundy did it the hard way, rising from the streets of South Philly to the top flight of boxing. Nobody ever gave him anything, he had to go out and get it, and that’s why he is so dangerous in the ring. Lundy is back fighting at 135lb and he is better than ever. If not Garcia or Broner then he wants either Terry Flanagan or Robert Easter Jr. He says he will beat all of them but the boxing public will just have to wait and see.
Breaking: Adrien Broner To Face Mikey Garcia On July 29th
Breaking: Adrien Broner To Face Mikey Garcia On July 29th
By: Sean Crose
“4-division world champion @AdrienBroner faces undefeated 3-division champ @mikeygarcia at 140 lbs on July 29th. #BronerGarcia,”
This tweet came on Showtime’s boxing page less than an hour ago. Needless to say, it represents good news for fans, who have already been enjoying a stellar 2017. There had been word that this bout would indeed happen, now that it’s official, the fight world has another huge match on its hands in the coming months.
Garcia, who has been nothing but sensational since returning to the ring after some time away, will be facing Broner at junior welterweight. His opponent, Broner, is, of course, boxing’s bad boy. The Cincinnati native’s reputation has taken a well deserved hit in recent years, thanks to a pair of high profile loses and much out of the ring antics. Still, Broner has a large degree of talent, and, when focused, presents a challenge for most anyone.