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How Did the Four Organizations Get Started & What Have They Accomplished?


By: Ken Hissner

The WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO have taken 8 divisions to 17 and a top 10 contenders list to 15 but has it been good for boxing? Let’s see and find out what they have done.

The oldest is the World Boxing Association which in 1921 was founded as the National Boxing Association. In 1962 it became the WBA. It has bounced back and forth from 1975 in Panama to Venezuela in the 1990’s and early 2,000’s and back to Panama in 2007.

Gilberto Mendoza of Venezuela was President from 1982 until his death in 2016. His son Gilberto Jr. took over at that time. It’s been said they are the worst for honoring champions.

The World Boxing Council came about in February of 1963 when Mexican President Adolfo Lopez Mateos called a meeting and under 11 countries including the US, PR, ARG, UK, FR, MEX, PH, PAN, Chile, Peru, VZ & BRZ. Presidents included Luis Spota, Ramon G. Velazqez both of Mexico. Then Justinano V. Montano, Jr. of the Philippines with Jose Sulaiman of Mexico becoming President from 1975 until his death in 2014. Then his son Mauricio took over.

The started drug testing first. They have increased the champions from 8 to 43. They have Silver, Green, interim and many off shoot belt holders.

The International Boxing Federation (then USBA) was formed in the US with a strong contingence from South Korea. In December of 1983 Heavyweight champion Larry “The Easton Assassin” was complaining (what’s new with him?) about fighting these “young lions” so Bob Lee who had failed in an attempt to become the WBA President in 1982 formed the IBF. Holmes then could defend against such boxers as Scott Frank and Marvis Frazier whose father “Smokin” Joe Frazier put him in with Holmes though his son only had 10 fights. Holmes was 44-0 at the time with 17 defenses. Needless to say Marvis only lasted 2:57. After the mismatch Holmes declared “that’s for all the whippings your daddy gave me in the gym!” Lee already headed the United States Boxing Association out of New Jersey so making boxers like Holmes champion automatically would bring in financial gains for Lee.

The two paragraphs prior to this were from this writer. The following is right from the IBF in part which I am thankful for their contribution.

The idea to form the United States Boxing Association (USBA) materialized in September of 1976 when the organizers decided it was time to form a new organization based in the US and comprised of legitimate boxing commissioners from the United States and its territories. Twenty-four US Commissions came together in April of 1977 to consider the structure or the organization. The association’s first convention was held in December 1977 at which the constitution and by-laws were adopted and the USBA was well on its way to play a major role in US boxing.

In its early years the USBA served as a springboard for it boxers to the rankings of the World Boxing Association (WBA), one of the two international sanctioning bodies at the time. In April of 1983 the members of the USBA voted to expand the organization and create an international division during the annual convention in Atlantic City, NJ.

The move to branch out was led by Robert W. Lee, Sr., who subsequently was voted the entity’s founding president. He was working as deputy commissioner for the NJ State Athletic Control board. He had reached the position of second vice-president of the WBA and had run for the presidency in 1980 and lost. It was then that he began seeking support to expand the USBA internationally.

In 1984, a vote was passed to change the name of the organization to the name it currently operates under, the International Boxing Federation. The IBF began rating female boxers in June of 2010, and crowned its first female champion Daniella Smith, in November of the same year.

As the organization continued to grow and prosper on a global scale, its leaders convened once again to address the organization’s name. In January 2018, the sanctioning body announced it would conduct business as the IBF. The USBA title would still exist as a regional title under the umbrella of the IBF.

The last to join the organizations and is still sometimes left out is the World Boxing Organization (WBO) founded in 1988 in Puerto Rico as a non-profit after attending the WBA convention. Its first president was Ramon Pina Acevedo of the Dominican Republic. He would be followed by former world champion Jose Torres of PR. In 1996 he retired being replaced by the current President Francisco Varcacel a PR lawyer.

In 2004 the WBC started putting the WBO champions in their ratings while the IBF didn’t until 2007. One of their most recognized champions would be Joe Calzaghe from Wales who made 21 defenses in the Super Middleweight division retiring with a 46-0 record. He didn’t come to the US until his last 2 bouts defeating Bernard “the Executioner” Hopkins and Roy Jones, Jr.

The WBO’s first heavyweight champion to oppose the other organizations Mike Tyson was Italy’s Olympian Francisco Damiani. “Merciless” Ray Mercer took care of Damiani with one uppercut to the nose in 1991. In Mercer’s next fight after blasting out Tommy “The Duke” Morrison he vacated the title. Then got out boxed by a much older Holmes. In 1992 he tried to re-gain the title which was held by Wladimir Klitschko of the UKR getting stopped in 6 rounds.

The WBO was mainly recognizing European and Asian with the UK boxers to follow in the beginning before coming to the US with success. The WBO has now some 16 world champions.

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Terence Crawford Vacates IBF Title; Lipinets-Kondo Ordered To Fill Void


By Jake Donovan

With his win over Julius Indongo in their 140-pound unification clash two weeks ago, Terence Crawford became just the third boxer in history to simultaneously own all four titles in one weight division.

The unbeaten two-division world champion from Omaha, Neb. made history just 12 days later, though for all of the wrong reasons.

The International Boxing Federation (IBF) was notified by Crawford’s camp on August 31 that the reigning super lightweight king was relinquishing their portion of the crown. The vacancy now makes his four-belt reign the shortest ever, although he still remains in possession of the World Boxing Council (WBC), World Boxing Association (WBA) and World Boxing Organization (WBO) titles—though it remains to be seen for how long.

Whatever his decision, the IBF has already begun the process of taking the next step toward filling the super lightweight void.

“Jr. Welterweight Champion Terence Crawford officially vacated the IBF Title (on Thursday),” IBF spokesperson Jeanette Salazar confirmed in a statement released through the New Jersey-based sanctioning body’s press office. “The leading available contenders according to the current list of IBF Jr. Welterweight rankings are #1, Sergei Lipinets and #3, Akihiro Kondo. Both boxers have indicated in writing they are willing to participate in the fight for the vacant IBF Jr. Welterweight title.”

Lipinets (12-0, 10KOs) was the mandatory challenger waiting in the wings, although the unbeaten Kazakhstani boxer was forced to wait out two unification bouts. He sat by as Indongo was granted what was supposed to be a one-time exception to bypass his mandatory title defense in favor of a unification bout with Ricky Burns, whom he outpointed in April to add the WBA title to his collection.

The IBF ordered a showdown between Indongo and Lipinets soon thereafter, but negotiations were non-existent as they were compromised by a vocal interest from the Crawford camp in unifying all four titles. Indongo and his co-promoter Eddie Hearn attempted to file a medical exemption, claiming a hand injury suffered in the Burns fight, but lacked sufficient proof of injury causing delay in ordered talks with Lipinets

From public demand – and a violation of its own rules – the IBF granted a final exemption to allow Crawford-Indongo, on the condition that the winner next face Lipinets by no later than November. Crawford emphatically collected all the belts on the heels of a 3rd round body shot knockout of Indongo on August 19 in Lincoln, Nebraska, but his victory tour lasted all of two days before receiving notification to immediately negotiate terms for his mandatory title defense.

Lipinets, however, decided he’d waited long enough for a title shot and—through promoter Tom Brown’s TGB Promotions—informed the IBF that his team opted to bypass the 30-day negotiation period and immediately enter a purse bid hearing which was due to take place on August 31.

Crawford and promoter Top Rank initially entertained the idea of winning a purse bid and perhaps showcasing the fight on ESPN. Instead, the purse bid hearing was called off as Crawford informed the IBF that he no longer desired to represent the organization at that weight, with the possibility of vacating all of his 140-pound titles in exchange for an expected move up the scale to welterweight.

Now a three-belt titlist for the moment, Crawford’s stay as a fully unified world champion lasted a grand total of 12 days.

Bernard Hopkins managed to hold all four middleweight titles for the final 10 months of a historic reign that saw 20 title defenses of at least one belt over the span of 10 years and three months. He obtained his fourth and final belt with a Sept. ’04 knockout of Oscar de la Hoya, and–with a 12-round win over Howard Eastman—remains the only boxer in history to make a single defense of all four belts at one time.

His reign ended in controversy, dropping a highly questionable 12-round decision to then-unbeaten Jermain Taylor in July ’05. Taylor’s stay as a four-belt king lasted four months, also eventually vacating his IBF title though in favor of a rematch with Hopkins.

Meanwhile, a new set of negotiations are underway to crown the next IBF 140-pound titlist.

“The IBF has ordered Lipinets and Kondo to fight for the vacant title and their respective teams should start negotiating immediately,” Salazar stated. “They have until September 30, 2017, to come to an agreement.

“If an agreement isn’t reached by then, the IBF will order a purse bid.”

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2-Time Olympic Gold Medalist Claressa Shields Wins World Titles


By: Ken Hissner

At the MGM Grand in Detroit, MI, Friday night Salita Promotions, MGM Grand and ShoBox headlined with 2-Time Olympic Gold Medalist Claressa Shields winning both the WBC World Female and IBF Female Super middleweight titles!


Photo Credit: Showtime Boxing

In the Main Event the 2012 and 2016 Olympic Gold Medalist Claressa “T-Rex” Shields, 4-0 (2), of Flint, MI, stopped the WBC World Female Super Middleweight champion Nikki Adler, 16-1 (9), of Augusburg, Bayem, Germany taking her title and the vacant IBF title at 1:34 of the fifth round of a lopsided fight.

In the opening round Shields landed the first punch a left uppercut to the chin of Adler. Halfway through the round a Shields right hand to the chin buckled the knees of Adler. A miss from a right hand by Adler was countered by a right to the chin from Shields. Already there were marks on the face of Adler. It was a big round for Shields. In the second round Shields went head hunting pounding the head of Adler who had no answer for this. A left hook from Shields to the head of Adler drove her into the ropes and could have been called a knockdown from referee Michael Griffin. It could have been a 10-8 round for Shields. That is how lopsided it was in favor of Shields. In the third round Shields came out on the attack once again as Adler stayed in the pocket with hands held high. Shields got through the defense of Adler with a pair of rights to the head making Adler hold on. As the bell sounded Shields was all over Adler.

In the fourth round Shields finally went to the body with lead rights followed by left hooks to the head of Adler who seems overwhelmed. A right hand lead miss by Adler was countered by a right from Shields to the head of Adler. Shields landed three body shots just prior to the bell. In the fifth round a 3-punch combination from Shields to the head of Adler had her stunned. With a minute left Shields started showboating with hands to her side. A left hook from Shields rocked Adler and Shields followed up with a combination to the head of Adler forcing referee Griffin to step in and stop the mismatch.

“Oh man that was crazy. It’s clear I am happy and blessed having trained for a hard fight and not a war. (Asked to compare this win to her Olympic Gold Medals) I’m more happier now than winning in the Olympics here among my friends,” said Shields. Also in the ring was WBO and WBC World Female middleweight champion Christina Hammer, 21-0 (9), born in KAZ now living in Germany with both talking about a meeting in 2018.

In the co-feature making his US debut southpaw Super bantamweight Vladimir Tikhonov, 16-1 (9), of St. Petersburg, Russia, lost for the first time in his career to southpaw Jesse Angel “The One” Hernandez, 9-1 (7), of Ft. Worth, TX, at 2:25 of the fifth round.

In the opening round Hernandez switched from southpaw to orthodox and back to southpaw as he pressured southpaw Tikhonov who boxed well in a close round. In the second round Tikhonov was landing more punches but Hernandez the stronger punches. Hernandez landed lead rights to the chin of Tikhonov on several occasions out of the orthodox style. It was a good round for Hernandez. In the third round Hernandez made Tikhonov mix it up by pressuring him. Halfway through the round Hernandez landed a right to the chin that knocked Tikhonov off balance as he was going backwards. Tikhonov came in and clashed heads with Hernandez and pushed him back. Hernandez ended the round with a right hand on the side of Tikhonov’s head knocking him halfway through the ropes as the bell sounded.

In the fourth round Tikhonov landed a hard right hook to the head of Hernandez but Hernandez came back strong rocking Tikhonov with combinations. Tikhonov pushed Hernandez off when he was inside.
In the fifth round Tikhonov butted Hernandez purposely and brought a warning from referee Ansel Stewart. Hernandez came back with much pressure driving Tikonov back again and again. When a left hook from Hernandez knocked the head of Stewart back referee Stewart waved it off to prevent Tikonov from suffering anymore punishment.

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The World Boxing Super Series Begins


The World Boxing Super Series Begins
By: Matthew N. Becher

Over the past weekend, the newly created World Boxing Super Series held its very first draft, for its very first tournament. The premise of the new tournament is an open competition for any professional boxer that is ranked in the top 15 of the major sanctioning bodies systems.

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In theory the best fighters would face off against one another, until the last man was standing, thus making him the #1 boxer in that weight class. Simple. That is the easy part, the hard part is getting the best fighters to all participate in such a tournament, with everyone having different promoters and so forth. Fortunately, it seems to have worked out for the initial Cruiserweight Tournament.

The seeding of the tournament went as follows. The top 4 fighters were ranked 1-4 by the WBSS, with the four belt holders getting the top rankings.

1: Oleksander Usyk (WBO)
2: Murat Gassiev (IBF)
3: Mairis Briedis (WBC)
4: Yunier Dorticos (WBA)

Then from 1-4, the fighter was allowed to pick or draft his opponent from a group of 4 boxers, for their first round fight. (An exception was made for Gassiev, who had a mandatory against Krzysztof Wlodarczyk. That fight was picked for him)

The first round of the tournament looks like this.

Oleksander Usyk (12-0 10KO) v. Marco Huck (40-4-1 27KO)
Murat Gassiev (24-0 17KO) v. Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (53-3-1 37KO)
Mairis Briedis (22-0 18KO) v. Mike Perez (22-2-1 14KO)
Yunier Dorticos (21-0 20KO) v. Dmitry Kudryashov (21-1 21KO)

Literally the best of the best in the Cruiserweight division will be competing against each other, until one is standing with all the belts, the inaugural Muhammad Ali Trophy and possibly a $1 million dollar bonus for advancing though semifinals and the championship round.

The tournament is slated to begin in early September and rap up by Mary of next year. The location of the fights have yet to be determined and will be placed in locations that match up well for each fight.

“To unify a division and spotlight a division that has clearly been underappreciated, even though the fights in the ring are always among the most exciting in the sport, irrespective of the division, that those four champions, if you look at the record – they are all undefeated. Most of their wins, the vast majority have come by knockout. So these are all big punchers, undefeated. I’m really excited,” said Richard Schaefer, the Chairman of the Americas for Comosa, who helped put this field together alongside fellow promoter Kalle Sauerland (the Chief Boxing Officer for Comosa).

This is a very exciting tournament for boxing and especially for the roll out of the new World Boxing Super Series. With formats like this, expect many division to start falling in line and possibly getting to see the best match up against the best in the near future.

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HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Raymundo Beltran vs. Jonathan Maicelo, Terence Crawford vs. Felix Diaz


HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Raymundo Beltran vs. Jonathan Maicelo, Terence Crawford vs. Felix Diaz
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night the under appreciated Terence Crawford will defend his WBO and WBC titles against former Olympic Gold Medalist Felix Diaz. This bout will take place at Madison Square Garden in New York City.

The co-main event of the night will be between Raymundo Beltran and Jonathan Maicelo in an IBF Lightweight eliminator. American prospect Shakur Stevenson will also be featured on the undercard.

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Top Rank will be the lead promoter on Saturday night and HBO will be televising the fights. The following is a preview of Saturday’s card.

Raymundo Beltran (32-7-1) vs. Jonathan Maicelo (25-2); IBF Lightweight Eliminator

The opening bout of the night will be between the rugged and entertaining Raymundo Beltran and contender Jonathan Maicelo.

Beltran is always a tough fight, but at thirty five years old his best days physically are likely behind him. He’s two years older than Maicelo and will be about one inch taller than him but will also be given up one inch in reach.

Beltran has the edge in power over Maicelo. He has twenty victories by stoppage and his last three wins have been by KO or TKO. Maicelo has twelve wins by stoppage but his last four fights were decision victories. Both boxers are able to be stopped, as Beltran has two stoppage losses and Maicelo has one.

Neither boxer has any notable international success as an amateur, though Maicelo did compete in several regional amateur tournaments in South America with a moderate amount of success.

Beltran’s last fight was a sensational knockout victory over Mason Menard. He has also defeated the likes of Arash Usmanee, Ji-Hoon Kim, Henry Lundy, and David Torres. His losses were to Terence Crawford, Luis Ramos Jr., Sharif Bogere, and Ammeth Diaz. He stopped Takahiro Ao in the second round, but that bout was overturned due to a positive test for steroids.

Maicelo has defeated the likes of Jose Felix Jr., Samual Amoako, and Art Hovannisyan. His losses were to Darleys Perez and Rustam Nugaev.

Beltran is that type of contender that will seemingly always be in the title hunt and has a pressure style that is difficult for some boxers to overcome. Maicelo has never defeated a high level opponent and doesn’t seem suited to handle the forward pressure that Beltran is known for.

This should be a good fight, but despite his age Beltran has enough gas in his tank to squeak out a decision victory.

Terence Crawford (30-0) vs. Felix Diaz (19-1); WBO/WBC Junior Welterweight Title

Terence “Bud” Crawford is considered to be a possible future opponent for Manny Pacquiao and is one of the top talents on the Top Rank roster.
He’s twenty nine years old and is in the middle of his athletic prime. His opponent, Felix Diaz, is thirty three years old. Crawford will also have a three inch height advantage and a three inch reach advantage.

Crawford has been fairly active the past two years. He has fought three times in 2016 and twice in 2015. Diaz fought twice in 2016 and twice in 2015.

Both boxers have strong amateur backgrounds. Crawford had success on the national level as an amateur and won the Police Athletic League Championship as well as the United States Pan American Games. Diaz won the gold medal in the 2008 Summer Olympics for the Dominican Republic.

Crawford has looked sensational throughout his career and nobody has come close to defeating him. He has defeated the likes of John Molina Jr., Viktor Postol, Henry Lundy, Dierry Jean, Thomas Dulorme, Raymundo Beltran, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Ricky Burns, and Andrey Klimov. Even though Crawford has fought many fights in his native Nebraska, he has shown a willingness to travel to fight as evident in his past fight with former champion Ricky Burns in Scotland.

Diaz is a technician but lacks power. He only has nine stoppage wins while Crawford has twenty one. The best opponents Diaz has defeated so far are Sammy Vasquez, Gabriel Bracero, Adrian Granados, and Emmanuel Lartei Lartey. His lone loss was a disputed loss to Lamont Peterson.

This writer thinks Diaz be one of the most difficult fights in Crawford’s career. He’s a technician and has a deep and successful amateur background. But Crawford has faced elite talent several times in his career and has defeated every opponent put in front of him. Diaz’s resume is void of any elite talent, and the one time he did face a legitimate title contender in Lamont Peterson he came up short.

Crawford should win the fight by decision.

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WBA/IBF Heavyweight Title Fight Preview: Anthony Joshua vs. Wladimir Klitschko


WBA/IBF Heavyweight Title Fight Preview: Anthony Joshua vs. Wladimir Klitschko
By: William Holmes

On Saturday afternoon one of the biggest heavyweight bouts in recent memory will take place at the famous Wembley Stadium in London, England.

This is such a major event that Wembley Stadium is expecting a record setting crowd of 90,000 fans in attendance. It is so big that Showtime will air the fight live at 4:15 p.m. live while HBO will televise the replay at 11:00 p.m. on same day tape delay.

It’s rare to see two of the biggest broadcasters of boxing agreeing to televise the same fight.

Esther Lim Showtime
Photo Credit: Esther Lin/Showtime

Both boxers appear to realize the magnitude of the vent at the most recent press conference. Joshua stated, “ Even though this is such a great event, I always try to strip it down to what it really is and just focus that it’s just me and this man coming to blows and the best man will win. I’m not only prepared physically but mentally as well for any battle.”

Klitschko recognizes that many count him out as an old faded champion and stated, “ Can you imagine my next opponent is going to fight a guy whose age is exactly the number of how long he has been in boxing- 27 years? Can you image that? It’s a pretty amazing task. Is it a degradation that I’m actually a challenger and underdog in this fight after 27 years in the sport? I don’t think so. I think it’s great”.

This is a huge bout, and will help determine if Anthony Joshua is the current kingpin of the heavyweight division and the reign of Klitschko is over, or if Klitschko’s time at the top is still ongoing.

The following is a preview of Saturday’s heavyweight title fight.

Anthony Joshua (18-0) vs. Wladimir Klitschko (64-4); WBA/IBF Heavyweight Title

This bout is between the next great big thing in the heavyweight division and a man who reigned over the heavyweight division from 2000-2015.

Both Joshua and Klitschko obtained the highest accolade one could achieve as an amateur boxer. Klitschko won the Gold Medal in the 1996 Summer Olympic Games for the Ukraine in the super heavyweight division and Joshua won the Gold Medal in the 2012 Summer Olympic Games for Great Britain in the super heavyweight division.

Both Joshua and Klitschko are very large heavyweights. Both stand at 6’6” and Joshua will have a slight one inch reach advantage, but both men have a reach of over 80”.

Klitschko’s age is his biggest liability. He’s forty one years old and is fourteen years older than Joshua. Joshua’s biggest liability is his relative lack of experience in big fights. He’s only fought eighteen times and has never faced an opponent the caliber of Klitschko.

Klitschko’s inactivity may also hurt him. He fought zero times in 2016, partially due to a calf injury, and only fought twice in 2015. Joshua on the other hand has been very active and fought five times in 2015 and three times in 2016.

Klitschko has been absolutely dominant the past decade and has defeated almost every big name in the heavyweight division in that time frame. He has defeated the likes of Bryant Jennings, Kubrat Pulev, Alexander Povetkin, Mariusz Wach, Tony Thompson, David Haye, Samuel Peter, Eddie Chambers, Ruslan Chagaev, Hasim Rahman, Sultan Ibragimov, Lamon Brewster, Calvin Brock, and Chris Byrd.

Joshua doesn’t have the extensive list of defeated contenders on his resume as Klitschko, but he has still defeated some very good opponents. He has defeated the likes of Eric Molina, Dominic Breazeale, Charles Martin, Dillian Whyte, Gary Cornish, and Kevin Johnson.

Joshua has the clear edge in power as he has stopped every single opponent he has faced as a professional. Klitschko has stopped fifty three of his opponents but has been stopped three times in his career.

Klitschko’s two biggest concerns appear to be fighting a tall boxer as was evident in his fight with Tyson Fury, and fighting a hard puncher as evident in his three knockout losses.

Joshua is just as tall as Klitschko and has plenty of power.

Don’t forget Joshua will be fighting in front of his countrymen.

All signs point to Anthony Joshua winning on Saturday and ushering in a new era of heavyweight boxing.

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Kell Brook to Defend Title Against Errol Spence Jr.


Kell Brook to defend title against Errol Spence Jr.
By: Matthew N. Becher

​While Manny Pacquiao was telling the world that he would no longer be fighting in Australia and was going to take his talents to Dubai, as well as letting twitter fans vote on the actual opponent for that fight, Kell Brook let it be known that he was ready to accept the challenge for his IBF welterweight title against the Undefeated Errol Spence Jr.

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​Negotiations for the Brook v. Spence Jr. fight have been going on for quite some time now. Spence became the number one contender almost six months ago, after defeating Leonard Bundu in Coney Island, NY. Unfortunately, the fight was pushed aside, since Brook decided to take on Gennady Golovkin for the Middleweight championship in England. This wasn’t just unfortunate for Spence, who would have to wait on his shot at the IBF title, but also unfortunate for Brook, who ended up getting his orbital bone broken in the 4th round, by the champion Golovkin.

​After surgery to repair his broken face, Brook went in to negotiations with longtime rival, and fellow countryman, Amir Khan. The two should have fought already, but they still have not been able to come to an agreement on the monetary split. It seemed very close to final this time around, and again looked like Spence would be put on the back burner. Until Brook made an announcement on his Social Media page last night.

“All that work just to give it up? Never ducked a challenge in my life. Here to give the fans what they want. Errol Spence Jr. you are next”

​To be honest, this is great news for the sport. With Danny Garcia and Keith Thurman fighting to unify the division on March 4th, the second best fight to be made in the weight class would be Spence v. Brook and just like that, it will also happen this year.

​Brook should be commended for taking the challenge of a young undefeated Spence, right after coming back from facial surgery and right after fighting one of the top pound for pound fighters at a higher weight. This is definitely one that fight fans are not going to want to miss.

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Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Jose Pedraza vs. Gervonta Davis, James DeGale vs. Badou Jack


Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Jose Pedraza vs. Gervonta Davis, James DeGale vs. Badou Jack
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York will host a WBC/IBF Super Middleweight Unification Title fight between Badou Jack and James DeGale to be televised live on the Showtime Cable Network.

This bout will help determine who the true number one boxer is in the super middleweight division since Andre Ward bumped up to the light heavyweight division.

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Another bout scheduled for Saturday will be between Jose Pedraza and Floyd Mayweather Jr. promoted Gervonta Davis for Pedraza’s IBF Junior Lightweight Title. This bout should open up the Showtime broadcast.

The following is a preview of Saturday’s card.

Jose Pedraza (22-0) vs. Gervonta Davis (16-0); IBF Junior Lightweight Title

This is an intriguing matchup between two young upcoming stars in boxing with a bright future ahead of them. It’s also interesting because both boxers have had some much publicized issues with their management teams in the months coming into this fight. It’s been alleged that Pedraza wasn’t completely pleased with his lack of activity underneath the management of Al Haymon, and it’s also been alleged that there was some friction between Gervonta Davis and his promoter, Floyd Mayweather Jr.

However, those issues appear to have been resolved to allow this matchup to take place.

The most noticeable difference between the two boxers on Saturday will be the difference in size. Pedraza will have a two and a half inch height advantage over Davis and will also have about an inch and a half reach advantage. Pedraza is also five years older than Davis, and is experienced enough to deal with the southpaw style that troubles many boxers.

Pedraza does have an edge in amateur experience. Davis did well on the national level; he was a 2012 National Golden Gloves Champion, a three time National Silver Gloves Champion, and a two time PAL Champion. But, Pedraza competed on the international stage as an amateur and represented Puerto Rico in the 2008 Summer Olympics. Valuable international experience that Davis does not appear to have.

Davis has been the more active boxer between the two. He fought five times in 2015 and twice in 2016. Pedraza only fought twice in 2015 and once in 2016.

Davis is also the more powerful puncher/knockout artist. He has stopped fifteen of his opponents. He has defeated the likes of Marco Antonio Macias, Guillermo Avila, Luis Sanchez, and Cristobal Cruz.

Pedraza only has twelve stoppages on his resume. He has defeated the likes of Stephen Smith, Edner Cherry, Andrey Klimov, Michael Farenas, and Tevin Farmer.

This will be an entertaining bout between power and technique, and it should be a close one. But Pedraza has faced better opposition both as an amateur and a professional, and that experience alone gives him a slight edge going into their fight on Saturday.

Badou Jack (20-1-2) vs. James DeGale (23-1) WBC/IBF Super Middleweight Titles

This is one of the best bouts that could be made in the super middleweight division, and the winner should be considered by most to be the best super middleweight.

Both boxers are beginning to leave their prime ages as Jack is thirty three years old and DeGale is thirty years old. Neither boxer is known for their power, as Jack only has twelve stoppage victories and DeGale has fourteen stoppage victories.

Even though both boxers are at the top of their weight division, neither fighter has been very active. Jack fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015, and DeGale also fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015.

Both boxers have a deep amateur background. Jack represented Gambia in the 2008 Summer Olympics and DeGale represented Great Britain in the 2008 Summer Olympics. However, only DeGale medaled as he won the gold medal.

Jack has defeated the likes of Lucian Bute, George Groves, Anthony Dirrell, Rogelio Medina, Marco Antonio Periban, and Farah Ennis. His lone loss was an upset loss to Derek Edwards which he lost by TKO.

DeGale has defeated the likes of Rogelio Medina, Lucian Bute, Andre Dirrell, Marco Antonio Periban, Gevorg Khatchikian, and Dyah Davis. His lone loss was the George Groves.

Even though this is a good matchup, it will likely not be a fan pleasing fight as both boxers are technically skilled fighters that are not known for their power. DeGale has experienced more success as an amateur than Jack, and that indicates that he’s the better technical boxer.

DeGale should win by a close decision on Saturday night.

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HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Parker vs. Ruiz, Beltran vs. Menard, Terence Crawford vs. John Molina


HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Parker vs. Ruiz, Beltran vs. Menard, Terence Crawford vs. John Molina
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night HBO and Top Rank Promotions will team up to televise three bouts from two different locations.

Terence Crawford will defend his WBO and WBC Junior Welterweight titles in the main event of the evening against John Molina live from Omaha, Nebraska. Additionally, lightweight contender Raymundo Beltran will compete against rising prospect Mason Menard as the co-main event of the Nebraska card.
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It was also recently announced that Top Rank will promote Joseph Parker in the United States; and HBO has decided to show the WBO Heavyweight Title Bout between Parker and Ruiz on a same day tape delay from Auckland, New Zealand.

The following is a preview of all three televised bouts.

Joseph Parker (21-0) vs. Andy Ruiz (29-0); WBO Heavyweight Title

Joseph Parker will be fighting in his hometown of Auckland, New Zealand and will be the favorite coming into this bout.

He has already fought four times in 2016, and four of his past five fights have been by TKO/KO. He is twenty four years old and is three years younger than his opponent. He will also have a two inch height advantage and a two inch reach advantage on Ruiz. Ruiz has also been fairly active and has fought three times in 2016.

Joseph Parker has the heavier hands of the two boxers. He has stopped eighteen of his opponents, and four of his past five fights have ended by TKO/KO. Ruiz has stopped nineteen of his opponents, but only two of his past five opponents failed to go the distance.

They both have had moderate success as an amateur. Ruiz was a Mexican National Amateur Champion and Parker medaled in several international competitions as an amateur.

Parker has a slight edge in quality of opposition. He has defeated the likes of Alexander Dimitrenko, Carlos Takam, and Bowie Tupou. Ruiz has defeated the likes of an aged Ray Austin and Siarhei Liakhovich.

Ruiz is a good enough of a boxer to last all twelve rounds, but it will be extremely difficult for him to pull out a victory in Parker’s home country of New Zealand.

Raymundo Beltran (31-7-1) vs. Mason Menard (32-1); Lightweights

The opening bout of the night in Omaha, Nebraska will be between Ray Beltran and Mason Menard in the lightweight division.

Beltran is a former sparring partner of Manny Pacquiao and is a rugged, tough, durable opponent. He’s much better than his record suggests and is known for having excellent stamina.

However, Beltran is thirty five years old and will be seven years older than his opponent, Mason Menard. Beltran will have about a two inch height advantage and a one inch reach advantage.

Menard does have a slight edge in power. He has twenty four knockouts on his record while Beltran only has nineteen.

Menard became well known with some upset victories on national television, including wins over Bahodir Mamadjonov and Eudy Bernardo. But prior to those wins he faced mainly non-descript opponents and most of his bouts were in his home state of Louisiana.

Beltran has defeated the likes of Ivan Najera, Arash Usmanee, Ji-Hoon Kim, and Henry Lundy. He also has several losses, but most of them have come against good opposition. He has lost to the likes of Terence Crawford, Luis Ramos Jr., and Sharif Bogere.

Neither boxer was very active in the past two years. They both fought twice in 2016 and once in 2015. Neither boxer experienced a great deal of success on the international stage as an amateur.

Menard has surprised many with his two latest victories, but Beltran is a big step up in competition for him and isn’t past his prime yet. This should be a fight that Beltran wins through a hard fought decision.

Terence Crawford (29-0) vs. John Molina (29-6); WBO/WBC Junior Welterweight Titles

Terence Crawford is one of Top Rank Promotions’ biggest stars and has been a rumored opponent for Manny Pacquiao in the future.

Crawford regularly fights in Omaha and will have a nearly sold out venue cheering him on.

He’s twenty nine years old and is in the middle of his athletic prime. He’s four years younger than Molina, but will be giving up about two and a half inches in height as well as an inch in reach.

Crawford has been fairly active for a champion and fought twice in 2016 and twice in 2015. Molina has only fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015.

Crawford has twenty stoppage victories and three of his past five fights did not go the distance. Molina has twenty three stoppage wins, but has gone 3-3 in his past six fights.

Molina is always a dangerous fighter, and this was evident in his last upset victory over the hard hitting Provodnikov. He has also defeated the likes of Mickey Bey, Dannie Williams, and Henry Lundy. However, Molina also has an impressive list of opponents that he has lost to. These fighters include Antonio DeMarco, Andrey Klimov, Lucas Matthysse, Humberto Soto, and Adrien Broner.

Crawford has never been defeated and has been slowly increasing the level of competition that he faces in the ring. He has defeated the likes of Viktor Postol, Henry Lundy, Dierry Jean, Thomas Dulorme, Raymondo Beltran, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Ricky Burns, and Andre Klimov.

Crawford was also very successful as an amateur on the national level, and has even won a Police Athletic League Boxing Championship.

This is a fight that very few expect Crawford to lose. He’s a more technically skilled boxer than the last man that Molina beat and should be able to stop Molina.

Molina has been known for upsetting the apple cart from time to time, but Saturday is unlikely.

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Three Warriors get the Call to Boxing Hall of Fame


Three Warriors get the Call to Boxing Hall of Fame
By: Matthew N. Becher

​Yesterday afternoon it was announced that 3 fighters would be inducted into next year’s class of the Boxing Hall of Fame in Canastota, New York. It was a very fitting class, since the three boxers were all known for being true warriors to the sport. Evander Holyfield, Marco Antonio Barrera and Johnny Tapia would be fitting to lead any class alone, but together, they make up one of the most “Tough as Nails” groups that you could put together.

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​Marco Antonio Barrera (67-7 44KO): The “Baby Faced Assassin” is and forever will be one of the greatest fighters to come out of the country of Mexico. Barrera was a three division world champion winning his first title against Daniel Jimenez in 1995. He would rule the super bantamweight division for most of the next decade, which included his most famous fight, against Erik Morales in 2000 to unify the division. Barrera loss the first of three to Morales, which became one of the greatest trilogies in boxing history and would solidify him as one of boxing’s toughest. He was also the man to snatch away the “0” from Prince Naseem Hamed, a fight that stunned the world, but not the fans that follow the sport closely. The flashy Hamed fought once more after he took the beating from Barrera then retired. Barrera went on to beat fellow Hall of Famer Johnny Tapia in 2002 and was knocked out for the only time of his career against the great Manny Pacquiao. Barrera has come a long way from the 15 year old who turned pro in 1989 to one of the greatest Mexican fighters ever.

​Johnny Tapia (59-5-2 30KO): Nothing written can do justice to the life that “Mi Vida Loca”, Johnny Tapia’s story tells. Born into extreme Poverty in Albuquerque, New Mexico in 1967. The most poignant of ways to describe Johnny’s life can be taken from a passage in his Autobiography, Mi Vida Loca: The Crazy Life of Johnny Tapia, Tapia wrote: “My name is Johnny Lee Tapia. I was born on Friday the 13th. A Friday in February of 1967. To this day I don’t know if that makes me lucky or unlucky. When I was eight I saw my mother murdered. I never knew my father. He was murdered before I was born. I was raised as a pit bull.

Raised to fight to the death. Four times I was declared dead. Four times they wanted to pull life support. And many more times I came close to dying. But I have lived and had it all. I have been wealthy and lost it all. I have been famous and infamous. Five times I was world champion. You tell me. Am I lucky or unlucky?”

​Tapia came from a struggle that no person should ever have to, and he used his fists as a way of expressing his anger and hate. He was never the most beautiful of fighter, but he was tougher than anyone you would ever want to face.

He was a fan favourite and multiple world champion. Unfortunately Tapia faced many out of the ring problems with drugs and criminal charges. Unfortunate to all, this Induction will be done posthumously as Johnny Tapia died in May of 2012 of Heart Failure, he was 45.

​Evander Holyfield (44-10-2 29KO): Many thought this day would never come, since Holyfield just wouldn’t stop fighting. Eventually he hung up the gloves in 2011 after Knocking out Brian Nielsen in Denmark. “The Real Deal” is one of the biggest names of his era. Holyfield was a member of the famed 1984 US Boxing team, where he won the Bronze medal (though he was unjustly disqualified in a controversial call). Holyfield then turned pro that same year and became the WBA World Cruiserweight champ in only his 12th fight, against Dwight Muhammad Qawi.

Holyfield would go on to become the Unified WBC/WBA/IBF Cruiserweight champ by 1988 before announcing he would move up to the Heavyweight division. Many thought that Holyfield, as good as he was, stood no shot against the bigger men, but he ran through the gauntlet of fighters and in two years became the Lineal, Undisputed Heavyweight champion in 1990 by knocking out James “Buster” Douglas. He would defend his titles against George Foreman, Bert Cooper, & Larry Holmes until engaging in one of his three thrilling fights against his rival Riddick Bowe. Bowe would win the first and third fights, but Holyfield took the second, leaving the only blemish on Bowes near perfect record. Holyfield was not finished there, as he then would go on to win the Heavyweight title against Mike Tyson in 1996 and defeat Tyson again in 1997, in a fight in which Tyson would bite part of Holyfield’s ear clean off.

Holyfield was a Heavyweight champion on four different occasions, Fighter of the year 3 times, ranked as the greatest Cruiserweight of all time and one of the top ten heavyweights ever. The man is a living legend and a true warrior of the sport.

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The Heavyweight Crown is Up for Grabs


The Heavyweight Crown is Up for Grabs
By: Matthew N. Becher

​A little over a week ago, the reigning (yet non-defending) Lineal Heavyweight champion, Tyson Fury, was forced to relinquish his titles. He had not fought it close to a year, was/is battling with an undisclosed “medical” or “mental” condition and has tested positive for cocaine usage. So with this event taking place, three major belts are currently sitting in a vacant state (four if you count the IBO title).

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​The WBC belt is currently held by American Deontay Wilder. Wilder has yet to fight a real formidable opponent, one of the Top of the heavyweight food chain. With that aside, he is a heavyweight champion and owns at least 1/5th of the ultimate piece of the pie. Wilder won his belt in 2015 and has defended it 4 times so far. Against the likes of Eric Molina, Johann Duhaupas, Artur Szpilka and Chris Arreola. Wilder was injured in his last fight and will look to defend his title again next year. Getting to the point of unifying the division.

​The IBF belt is currently held across the pond by the 27 year old British heavyweight Anthony Joshua. Joshua is a former Olympic Gold Medalist, who won his title earlier this year, blasting away at then champion Charles Martin in only 2 rounds. Joshua has a date set to defend his title in England on December 10th. Talk of him taking on former unified heavyweight champion Wladamir Klitschko were making the rounds for a bit, but seem to have stalled. Joshua will most likely fight against a lesser than opponent and wait until next year to possibly try and add another belt around his waist.

​So where do the other belts end up?

​The WBO has ordered a fight between New Zealand’s Joseph Parker (21-0 18KO) and Mexican American Andy Ruiz Jr. (29-0 19KO) to take place in Auckland on December 10th. Both men have stellar records, against little known opponents. Parker at 24 and Ruiz at 27 would make either a very young champion and would also surely set them up against one of the upper echelon of the heavyweight division next year.

​The WBA is a bit trickier, in that they have a “Regular” champion and a “Super” Champion. The “Regular” champion is undefeated Cuban Luis Ortiz (25-0 22KO). Ortiz will defend that title November 12th against veteran Malik Scott. If Ortiz can pull through, he should be set up with a chance to fight for the “Super” title, sometime next year.

​All the belts are right now up for grabs and if you noticed, all of the names that have been brought up, sans Klitschko, are of fighters with undefeated records.

Most have yet to test themselves against one another, and the top men in the most glamorous division in all of sport will be put on the spot to finally validate themselves. By this time next year, we should see at least two unified champions, if not one lineal, undisputed heavyweight champion of the world. If this doesn’t happen, then who knows where the belts will be, most likely around peoples waist that hardly deserve them.

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HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Chocolatito vs. Cuadras, Golovkin vs. Brook


HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Chocolatito vs. Cuadras, Golovkin vs. Brook
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night HBO will broadcast two world championship fights from two different venues. Pound for pound king Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez will be bumping up to the junior bantamweight division to chase after another world title when he faces off against Carlos Cuadras. If he is successful he will have won titles in four different weight classes. Earlier in the day knockout artist Gennady Golovkin will be defending his middleweight titles when he faces welterweight world champion Kell Brook.

The Gonzalez vs. Cuadras bout will take place at the Forum in Inglewood, California and the Golovkin vs. Brook bout will take place at the O2 Arena in London, England on Brook’s home turf. HBO will also be televising a rematch between Yoshihiro Kamegai and Jesus Soto-Karass in the junior middleweight division. Their previous fight was considered by many to be a fight of the year candidate.

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The following is a preview of both world title fights.

Carlos Cuadras (35-0-1) vs. Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (45-0); WBC Junior Bantamweight Title

Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez is a three division world champion and considered by many to be the best pound for pound boxer in the world today. However, there are limits to how many weight classes an individual can be a champion in and he’s facing a legitimate junior bantamweight world champion.

Gonzalez will be giving up five inches in height and two inches in reach to Cuadras. Cuadras is also one year younger than Gonzalez, but both are in their physical primes.

They both have been fairly active in the past two years. Cuadras fought three times in 2014 and in 2015, and already fought once in 2016. Gonzalez fought four times in 2014, three times in 2015, and once so far in 2016.

They both had experienced success as an amateur. Cuadras is a Pan American gold medalist and a gold medalist in the International Junior Olympics. Chocolatito has an alleged record of 88-0 as an amateur, but does not have any notable international amateur tournament victories.

Chocolatito has beaten the likes of Yutaka Niida, Juan Francisco Estrada, Rocky Fuentes, Akiri Yaegashi, Edgar Sosa, Brian Viloria, and McWilliams Arroyo. Cuadras has defeated the likes of Marvin Mabait, Luis Concepcion, Dixon Flores, Koki Eto, and Richie Mepranum.

Gonzalez has more world title fight experience and has a record of 14-0 in world title fights. Cuadras has a record of 6-0 in world title fights.

Both boxers have considerable power. Cuadras has twenty seven stoppage victories, and three of his past five fights were by stoppage victory. Gonzalez has thirty eight stoppage victories.

It will be interesting to see how Gonzalez handles the length and reach of Cuadras. Gonzalez, who was a world champion in the minimumweight division, will likely be unable to jump additional weight classes if he’s victorious on Saturday and he has a very tough test ahead of him. This should be an entertaining and technical bout, but Gonzalez should be able to pull off the decision victory, but may have his chin tested in the process.

Gennady Golovkin (35-0) vs. Kell Brook (36-0); WBA/WBC/IBF Middleweight Titles

Don’t let the fact that Kell Brook is jumping up two weight classes to fight Gennady Golovkin fool you. Brook is a large welterweight and Golovkin is a smaller middleweight. In fact, Brook has been weighing in heavier than Golovkin in the weeks leading up to the fight.

One of the biggest question marks about Golovkin is his age. He’s thirty four years old and doesn’t have many years left in his prime. His opponent is four years younger than him. Golovkin, however, will have a slight one and a half inch height advantage and a one inch reach advantage.

Despite the fact he’s a major star in boxing, Golovkin has kept a fairly active schedule. He has fought once in 2016, three times in 2015, and three times in 2014. Brook has been having trouble finding a big fight in the welterweight division and fought twice in 2014 and in 2015, and once in 2016.

Golovkin’s power is well known and can be considered legendary. He has thirty two knockouts on his resume and is in the midst of an incredible streak that consists of twenty two wins by knockout in a row. Brook’s power can’t be overlooked, he has stopped twenty five opponents and has one four of his past five fights by stoppage.

Brook will be fighting in front of his home crowd at the O2 arena and that will be a big advantage for him. He has defeated the likes of Kevin Bizier, Frankie Gavin, Ionut Dan Ion, Shawn Porter, Vyacheslav Senchenko, Matthew Hatton, and Luis Galarza.

The last person to go the distance against Golovkin was Amar Amari in 2008. He has steamrolled every boxer he’s faced since then. He has defead the likes of Dominic Wade, David Lemieux, Willie Monroe Jr., Martin Murray, Marco Antonio Rubio, Daniel Geale, Curtis Stevens, Matthew Macklin, Nobuhiro Ishida, Gabriel Rosado, Kassim Ouma, and Grzegorz Proksa.

Golovkin has to be very careful to not overlook Kell Brook. Brook is a very good, technical boxer and is considered by many to be a top 10 pound for pound fighter. Golovkin’s power should be able to lead him to victory, but don’t be surprised if he knockout streak ends on Saturday night.

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Jacobs vs. Mora II and Easter vs. Commey at Santander Arena in Reading, PA, Friday!


Jacobs vs. Mora II and Easter vs. Commey at Santander Arena in Reading, PA, Friday!
By: Ken Hissner

Two World Title fights headline Friday night at the Santander Arena in Reading, PA! King’s Promotions bring’s big time boxing to Reading on SPIKE TV with co-features starting at 9pm. Jacobs-Mora II and Easter and Commey for vacant title should be nothing but fireworks!

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Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs, 31-1 (28), of Brooklyn, NY, defends his WBA World middleweight title against former WBC super welterweight champion and No. 15 contender Sergio “The Latin Snake” Mora, 28-4-2 (9), of L.A. in a rematch from August of 2015. In December Jacobs scored a sensational knockout over former WBO champion Peter Quillin in the first round. Mora has not fought since August. Several weeks ago on a conference phone call Jacobs said “If he’s saying I didn’t knock him down that caused him to twist his ankle I felt the contact it in my hand,” said Jacobs. “He grazed the back of my head but my ankle was already twisted,” said Mora. Both boxers are managed by Al Haymon. The call ended with “Go F yourself. I’ll see you in two weeks old boy,” said Mora. “Well let’s do it on September the 9th. You already know Sergio I’m coming for you brother,” said Jacobs. There is obvious bad blood between the two since their first fight which should make for a very interesting contest.

In the other co-feature 2012 Olympic alternate Robert Easter, Jr., 17-0 (14), of Toledo, OH, and Richard Commey, 24-0 (22), of Accra, GH, fight it out for the vacant IBF Super lightweight title.

“Yeah I am very excited coming to Reading and fight for the IBF title. I hope Richard Commey is bringing his A game because I will be bringing mine,” said Easter. “I’ve worked very hard to get this opportunity as I’m sure Robert Easter, Jr. has too so it should be a great fight,” said Commey. Commey is No. 3 and Easter No. 4 with both the No. 1 and No. 2 vacant.

There are a dozen bouts on the undercard at this point but several will fall out or the Boxing Director Greg Sirb will see to it you don’t have much more than 7 bouts. In 8 round bouts former IBF welterweight and interim WBC champion Kermit “El Asesino” Cintron, 37-5-2 (28) of Reading continues his comeback. Local favorite super featherweight Frankie De Alba is in an 8. Another local favorite super Heavyweight Travis “My Time” Kauffman, 30-1 (22), of Reading is in a 10.

In a pair of 8 round bouts from Philadelphia crowd pleaser super middleweight Christopher “Ice Cold” Brooker, 10-1 (5) steps up to meet Elvin Ayala, 28-7-1 (12), of New Haven, CT. Light heavyweight Earl Newman, 9-0 (7), of Brooklyn will meet Leo Hall, 8-1 (7), of Detroit. Also scheduled yet without an opponent is Argentina’s Jorge Sebastian Heiland, 27-4-2 (14), who is the No. 1 WBC middleweight contender.

Super welterweight Erik Spring 7-1-1 (1), super welterweight Miguel Martinez, 2-2 (0), and super lightweight Kashon Hutchinson, 1-0 (1) all of Reading are in 6 round bouts. Also, from Philadelphia, the popular super featherweight Thomas “T.J.” Velasquez, 5-0 (4) out of the Danny “Swift” Garcia camp is in a 4 round bout. He is still without an opponent.

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PBC on NBC Results: Spence Stops Bundu and Makes Himself the Mandatory for Kell Brook


PBC on NBC Results: Spence Stops Bundu and Makes Himself the Mandatory for Kell Brook
By: William Holmes

Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) was broadcast live from the Ford Amphitheater from the Coney Island Board in Brooklyn New York. It was a one hour special attraction and was broadcast immediately after the United States gold medal win in Olympic basketball and before the closing ceremonies.

The main event of the night was between 2012 US Olympian Errol Spence Jr. (20-0) and veteran boxer Leonard Bundu (33-1-2) in the welterweight division.

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NBC wasted little time in getting right into fighter introductions and right into the fight.

Spence, a southpaw, was noticeably taller and longer than Bundu. He spent most of the first round sticking his jab in the face of Bundu and remained patient. He was able to land some hard hooks to the body, and handled a switch to the southpaw stance by Bundu in the middle of the round well.

Spence stayed steady with his jab in the second round and mixed it up with an occasional lead left hook and cross to the body. Bundu was having difficulty finding his range and had most of his punches blocked when he did get within range.

The clean punching of Spence continued into the third round; though Bundu was able to land a few short overhand lefts and hooks to the body. Spence was in almost complete control by the fourth round and was mixing up his body head combinations well. An uppercut from Spence in the fourth round knocked the mouthpiece of Bundu out of his mouth.

Bundu looked frustrated and a little desperate in the fifth round, but Spence remained calm and in control.

Bundu’s right eye was slightly swollen at the start of the sixth round and Spence picked up the pressure and aggressiveness and ripped some hard hooks into the body of Bundu. Spence scored the first knockdown of the night with an uppercut to the body on Bundu by the ropes that sent him crashing backwards. Bundu got back to his feet but was crumpled over backwards by Spence with a vicious combination that had Bundu on the mat awkwardly leaning backwards on his right leg.

The referee waived off the fight at 2:06 of the sixth round giving Errol Spence Jr. another knockout victory.

Errol Spence Jr. is now the mandatory challenger for the IBF Welterweight title, which is currently held by Kell Brook.

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PBC on NBC Preview: Errol Spence Jr. vs. Leonard Bundu


PBC on NBC Preview: Errol Spence Jr. vs. Leonard Bundu
By: William Holmes

On Sunday afternoon, at 5:00 PM EST, Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) will broadcast a daytime event live on NBC from the Ford Amphitheater at the Coney Island Boardwalk in Brooklyn, New York.

Only one bout is scheduled to be televised on Sunday and it will be between former United States Olympian Errol Spence Jr. and Italian contender Leonard Bundu. They will be competing in an IBF Welterweight Title eliminator bout.

Photo Credit: Lucas Noonan / Premier Boxing Champions

Prospects Claudio Marrero and Heather “The Heat” Hardy will be competing on the undercard will have a chance at fighting on the televised portion of the NBC card if the Spence bout is over quickly. Heather Hardy will have the toughest test of her career when she faces fellow undefeated boxer Shelly Vincent.

Spence, who is perhaps the most famous United States Olympian boxer from 2012, will be fighting before the start of the closing ceremonies for the 2016 Rio Olympics and on the same network that will be broadcasting it.

The following is a preview for the bout between Errol Spence Jr. and Leonard Bundu.

Errol Spence Jr. (20-0) vs. Leonard Bundu (33-1-2); IBF Welterweight Eliminator Bout

Many pundits consider Leonard Bundu to be the toughest opponent that Errol Spence Jr. has faced at this point of his career.

At first glance that may appear to be true. Bundu, like Spence, competed in the Olympics and was successful on the national and international stage in the amateurs. Bundu was born in Sierra Leone but represented Italy in the 2000 Summer Olympics. Spence represented the United States in the 2012 Summer Olympics. Both failed to medal.

However, the similarities end there.

The biggest difference between the two opponents is age. Bundu is fifteen years older than Spence and is past his prime at the age of forty one. Bundu will also be giving up about three inches in reach and three inches in height when he steps into the ring.

Bundu also has only competed once in 2015 and once in 2016, while Spence fought once in 2016 and four times in 2015. Spence has clearly been the more active fighter.

Spence has seventeen knockouts on his record for a high stoppage ratio of 85%. Bundu has only stopped twelve of his opponents, and has five less stoppage victories despite having sixteen more fights.

Spence has been in the ring with increasingly difficult opposition. He beat the brakes off of Chris Algieri and was able to stop him while Manny Pacquiao was unable to do so. He has also defeated the likes of Chris Van Heerden, the sparring opponent of UFC star Connor McGregor, Phil Lo Greco, Alejandro Barrera, and Ronald Cruz.

Bundu stepped up in competition to face the elite of the welterweight division when he faced Keith Thurman, but he lost to him by decision. He has defeated the likes of Frankie Gavin, Lee Purdy, and Daniele Petrucci.

Bundu is a good fight for Spence at this stage of his career and has a solid chin. He should be able to give Spence some rounds and an opportunity for Spence to showcase his skills in front of a nationally televised audience.

But, Bundu has little to no chance of defeating one of the most prized prospects in the United States on Sunday afternoon. Bundu can survive the whole bout, but will take a beating in the process.

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