Jeison Rosario Pulls the Upset and Stops Julian Williams
By: Rich Lopez
Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) started the New Year with a possible upset of the year candidate. The card was held at Liacouras Center in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and televised on FOX. It was supposed to be a homecoming win for local favorite Julian Williams. However, it turned out to be the Jeison Rosario show.
The upset took place in the main event as Jeison “Banana”Rosario (20-1-1, 14 KO’s) of the Dominican Republic stopped Julian “J-Rock” Williams (27-2-1, 16 KO’s) of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, in the 5th round. Rosario captured the WBA and IBF World Super Welterweight Titles and a new champion was crowned.
In the opening round, Williams started off by establishing his jab while Rosario was the aggressor. Williams had a good round and landed some good right hands on the head of Rosario. Once round two got underway, Rosario cut the left eye of Williams with a left jab. The cut bothered Williams and both fighters started to exchange punches with Rosario getting the better of them. Round three was action packed as both fighters traded punches in the inside. Williams landed more punches than Rosario but it was close. In round four, Rosario was starting to land his jab. In the center of the ring, both fighters traded blows again. Then disaster came for Williams in round five. Rosario landed a right hand followed by a left hook that wobbled Williams. Rosario went for it and threw many hard punches to finish off Williams. Williams grabbed Rosario and fell down. Williams managed to get up but very slow. Rosario went for the finish and landed a right uppercut and then a left hook that staggered Williams again which prompted the ref to stop the fight.
No complaints on the stoppage as Williams was basically out on his feet. The finish came out at 1:37 of the 5th round.
Julian Williams defeated Jarett Hurd last year to win the IBF and WBA titles. Once again the championship changed hands and according to the odds makers, it was a huge upset. Rosario was on a mission and trained very hard for the fight and it paid off. An emotional Rosario celebrated his victory while Julian Williams was in shock. Williams did not blame his loss on the cut and he gave Rosario his props for the victory. Williams made Philly proud for putting up a good fight. Jermell Charlo might be the top fighter in super welterweight division but now we have Jeison Rosario to look out for.
In the co-feature, Chris “Primetime” Colbert (14-0, 5 KO’s) of Brooklyn, New York captured the vacant Interim WBA Super Featherweight Title. He won a twelve round unanimous decision over former world champion Jezreel “Invisible” Corrales (23-4, 9 KO’s) of Panama. The fight was a test for Colbert as he faced off against a former world champion. The first round was a feel out round with not much action with both fighters keeping their distance. Colbert moved forward in round two and Corrales landed body shots towards the end of the round. The fight was tactical and the action was slow in round three. Colbert put more pressure in round four and had some better success. Both fighters were landing jabs on each other. In round five, the pace still did not pick up. There was showboating from Colbert and he spend a lot of time switching stances. The pace finally picked up in rounds six and seven. Corrales was starting to land straight left hands to the body of Colbert. As Colbert was the aggressor in the rounds, Corrales did a good job of countering Colbert. In round eight, Colbert started the round well but then the fighters went back to keeping their distance and posing. In round nine, Corrales was firing some good body punches but then started to grab Colbert and used dirty tactics. Colbert broke through in round ten when he dropped Corrales with a left hook and right hand. Corrales managed to get up and finish the round. Colbert picked up where he left off and went right to Corrales in round eleven. Colbert landed a good right hand that stunned Corrales again. Colbert threw a flurry of punches that made Corrales grab again. As Corrales tried to grab, he fell to the canvas and wentout the ropes. It was not a knockdown and Corrales made it back in the ring. In the final round, Corrales just looked to survive and Colbert just boxed his way to the end. The final scores were 116-111, 117-110 (twice) all in favor of Colbert.
Colbert did not get the knockout like his previous fight but he fought a former world champion that gave him rounds. Styles make fights. The style of Corrales was difficult for Colbert throughout the fight but Colbert managed to figure his opponent out and he closed the show. With the victory, Colbert is in line to face WBA World Super Featherweight Champion Leo Santa Cruz. It might be too soon for Colbert, but he feels that he is ready for the challange.
In the opening bout of the telecast, top prospect Joey Spencer(10-0, 7 KO’s) of Linden, Michigan, kept his winning ways. Hedefeated Erik Spring (13-4-2, 1 KO) of Reading, Pennsylvania,by a six round unanimous decision. Once again styles make fights and this particular fight hardly produced any action. This was a slow paced fight from beginning to end. In rounds one and two, both fighters did not do much. Spencer did pick up the pace a little in round three and landed a few shots on Spring. The pace was still slow in round four. Spencer came forward but was having a hard time landing clean shots. Towards the end of the round, Spring went forward but he couldn’t land anything either. In round five, Spencer landed a nice right hand and left hook on the head of Spring. In the final round, Spring made an effort to push the action but it was not much. Spencer landed a left hook at the end to close the round. All judges scored it the same at 60-54 for Joey Spencer.
It was a fight with no action and maybe Spencer could have been more impressive. He looked average in the fight but then again the style of Spring made it difficult to land anything clean on him.
PBC On Fox Preview: Williams-Rosario
By: Sean Crose
Julian “J Rock” Williams earned more good will among boxing fans in a single night than most fighters could probably earn throughout a career. Having been seen as a legitimate rising start in the junior middleweight division, William’s upward trajectory came to a sudden and seemingly permanent halt when the Philly based fighter was bested by Jermall Charlo late in 2016. Rather than fall apart, however, Williams decided to grow form the experience. “I just dusted myself off,” Williams recalled years later. “It was just another fight to me.” That mentality served the man well. For when Williams faced the highly regarded Jarret Hurd last spring – he dominated. What’s more, he earned himself the WBA and IBF junior middleweight titles.
A rematch was expected but has yet to come to fruition. Therefore, Williams will be making the first defense of his belts Saturday night in his hometown of Philadelphia, at the Liacouras Center, in a scheduled twelve rounder that will be aired live on Fox. The 27-1-1 William’s opponent will be the largely unknown but talented Jeison Rosario, a 19-1-1 contender who can hit hard and who employs sound footwork in the ring. Few may be giving Rosario a chance, but the native of the Dominican Republic is a dedicated professional and, at the age of 24, is nothing if not determined to shock the world this weekend. Rosario’s last fight was a split decision win over Jorge Cota last April.
The interim WBA junior lightweight title will also be at stake this weekend when the undefeated Brooklyn based fighter Chris Colbert takes on the 23-3 Jezzrel Corrales in a scheduled 12 rounder. At 13-0, Colbert is confident, funny, and eager to take on Leo Santa Cruz in the future. First, though, Colbert will have to get past Corrales, who has already held a world title in the same division. Although he’s been knocked out by Alberto Machado and dropped a split decision loss to Ladarius Miller his last time in the ring, Corrales is an experienced vet who knows how to get the big win.
Rising middleweight Joey Spencer will also appear on the PBC card. The 19 year old already has a 9-0 record, with 7 knockouts to his name. The Californian will be facing the 13-3-2 Erik Spring in a scheduled 6 rounder. The 35 year old Spring’s last fight was a unanimous decision loss to Courtney Pennington last September. Spencer’s last bout was a September knockout of Travis Gambardella.
The Williams-Rosario card is being presented by Premiere Boxing Champions and will be aired live on Fox starting at 8pm Eastern Standard Time on Saturday.
Jarret Hurd Backs Out Of Julian Williams Rematch
By: Hans Themistode
Unified Jr Middleweight champion Julian Williams (27-1-1, 16 KOs) shocked much of the boxing world when he unseated former champion Jarrett Hurd (23-1, 16 KOs) on May 11th, earlier this year. It was even more shocking to hear that their highly anticipated rematch, which was slated to take place sometime in December, was called off.
Hurd initially opted to have an immediate rematch to avenge his lone defeat as a pro. With the news of the former champion electing to go in a direction however, it has left several scratching their heads.
Standing at six feet one inches, Hurd has always been viewed as the biggest fighter in the division. He has also at times struggled to make weight. A move up to the Middleweight division could be in the cards for Hurd.
The former champion had long expressed a desire to move up in weight, but first wanted to capture every title in the Jr Middleweight division. He was half way there as he picked up the IBF crown by stopping Tony Harrison in the ninth round of their 2017 matchup. He followed that up one year later by taking the WBA title away from long time belt holder Erislandy Lara via split decision.
The first contest between these two was competitive, but one that Williams won decisively. He floored the much bigger Hurd in the second round and had the former champion on his heels all night long. According to Williams, the decision made by Hurd was a wise one.
“Our first fight was a really good, fan-friendly fight, but it appears he has other plans. I’m not going to bash him. I don’t know what happened. You have to ask him,” Williams said. “Things change in boxing, man, what can I say. I don’t really know how to feel about it. If he doesn’t want to fight, that’s his prerogative. Smart move if you ask me. I wish him the best. I don’t have anything bad to say about him.”
The news of the cancelation of this contest is a tough pill to swallow for fight fans as the rematch was sure to be another action packed contest. Even with Williams needing to find a new opponent, his motivation to unify titles remains the same. The rematch between former champion Jermell Charlo and current WBC champion Tony Harrison is set to take place later on this year and Williams has been vocal about taking on the winner.
As for Hurd, his future is murky at best. He recently decided to part ways with long time trainer, Ernesto Rodriguez which adds to the uncertainty that currently surrounds him.
With his time at the Jr Middleweight division seemingly over, Hurd could have big matches awaiting him one weight class above.
Williams Upsets Hurd On Memorable PBC Card
By: Sean Crose
PBC on Fox, along with the EagleBank arena in Fairfax, Virginia hosted one heck of a card on Saturday night, one which featured three memorable bouts. The first match was a controversial affair, as the 28-2 Matvey Korobov battled the 18-1 Immanuwel Aleem to a majority draw in a ten round middleweight fight. After Korobov looked strong in the first half of the bout, Aleem came on strong in the second half. The fight was originally read as a win for Korobov, making things a bit chaotic once it became clear the wrong score had been read. In the second bout, welterweight Mario Barrios, 23-0, demolished the 20-1 Juan Jose Velasco in the second round of their scheduled ten rounder with a paralyzing body shot.
The main event, which was for Jarret Hurd’s IBF and WBA junior middleweight belts, was a scheduled twelve rounder. Hurd had the advantage of fighting close to home in Virginia, but his opponent, the 26-1-1 Julian Williams was determined to redeem himself after losing a much hyped bout against Jermall Charlo in 2016.
The first round was something of a feeling out process. Williams was able to land effectively in the second, even hurting Hurd a bit. Then, with only 30 seconds left in the round, Hurd actually got sent to the mat. Hurd got back to his feet. Williams unloaded, but the defending champion was able to survive until the bell. The third was a rough, mauling affair, one which still saw Williams gaining an edge. By round’s end, however, Hurd began landing well from a distance. Williams continued to chop away at Hurd in the fourth. Round five was terrific, with neither man willing to be denied. The sixth was all out war, with the fighters engaging in a seesaw battle.
Hurd pressed the attack in the seventh, swinging wildly at the final bell. The beginning of round eight had shades of Clay-Liston, as Hurd appeared to be troubled by something in his eye. Williams went in for the kill, but after a few moments, Hurd seemed to be no longer bothered. Williams landed clean, heavy shots in the ninth. Hurd may have pulled off the tenth by virtue of being the more active of the two fighters. In the eleventh, it was clear that Williams simply hit considerably harder than the defending champion. The twelfth was close, but it was Williams who threw the harder punches.
Williams won the fight, via unanimous decision, and went home with Hurd’s title belts.
“Boxing world,” Williams said after the fight, “stop forgetting fighters once they take a loss.” The newly crowned champion was referring to his single to defeat to Charlo almost two and a half years earlier. Hurd, as was fitting his personality, was gracious in defeat.
Jarrett Hurd-Julian Williams Fight Preview
By: Sean Crose
IBF and WBA junior middleweight champion Jarrett Hurd will defend his titles in Fairfax, Virginia this Saturday night when he faces Julian “J Rock” Williams in a card that will be aired live on Fox starting at 8 PM Eastern Standard Time. Hurd, 23-0, has taken to besting a who’s who of divisional notables in the past two and a half years. Erislandy Lara, AustinTrout, and Tony Harrison have all fallen victim in one form or another to the fighter known as “Swift.” In Williams, 26-1-1, Hurd will be facing another name of note.
A Philly fighter, William’s one loss was to Jermall Charlo in December of 2016. Since that time, he’s gone on to win four in a row, three within the distance. “I just dusted myself off,” Premiere Boxing Champions quotes William’s as saying of his lone loss. “It was just another fight to me.” Now, over two years since that single loss, Williams is getting another major title shot (the bout with Charlo was for the IBF junior middleweight championship). Hurd, however, intends to continue succeeding in the ring. “My confidence level is sky high,” the defending champion said on a recent conference call to promote this weekend’s fight. “I want to make it one sided all the way through.” The Hurd-Williams match is scheduled for 12 rounds.
The well regarded 23-0 junior middleweight Mario Barrios will also be on Saturday’s card. His opponent is the 20-1-0 Juan Jose Velasco, whose lone loss came at the heavy hands of Regis Prograis last summer in New Orleans. The bout, which is scheduled for 10 rounds, is expected to result in another win on Barrio’s resume. None of Barrio’s last seven opponents has managed to go the distance with the San Antonio, Texas native.
Another Jermall Charlo victim, Matvey Korobov, will be fighting Saturday night in Virginia, as well. The 28-2 Russian’s opponent will be the 18-1-1 Immanuwel Aleem. The fight is scheduled for 10 rounds in the middleweight realm. Korobov was on the rise, but was stopped by Andy Lee in 2014. He moved on to his ill-fated fight with Charlo late last year, but aims to prove that a loss or two doth not a career define. Aleem himself only has a single loss on his resume, a 2017 knockout defeat to Hugo Centeno Jr.
The entire card will go down live at the EagleBank Arena in Fairfax.
Philadelphia’s Julian “J Rock” Williams Gearing for Another Title Shot
By: Ken Hissner
Philadelphia’s Julian “J Rock” Williams is gearing for WBO & IBF titles. He is ranked No. 3 in the WBO and No. 6 in the IBF. His only loss was to Jermall Charlo now the interim WBC world champion in December of 2016.
In Williams most recent fight he defeated No. 5 IBF and No. 12 WBC contender Nathaniel Gallimore, 20-1-1, on April 7th by majority decision at the Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Las Vegas, NV, despite being cut by an accidental clash of heads.
Latest rumor is Williams may be fighting against No. 2 ranked Takeshi Inoue, 13-0-1 (7), in an elimination to meet Jarred Hurd who is coming off the injury list.
Williams is trained by Stephen “Breadman” Edwards and trains at the James Schuler Memorial Gym in West Philadelphia. As an amateur Williams always had that determination to “hurt” his opponents by throwing punches with “bad intentions!” I think he has carried that over to the professional ranks.
After turning professional in May of 2010 he won his first six fights before drawing with Francisco Santana, 12-2, at the time. In his last fight in April Santana defeated Felix Diaz 19-2, and is now 25-6-1.
After the draw Williams won his next seven fights including defeating Joey Hernandez, then 24-2, and Luciano Leonel Cuello, then 35-3 for the WBC Continental Americas title. He had a no contest in the fourth round due to an accidental head butt after winning the first three rounds on all score cards against Hugo Centeno, Jr., then 19-0. Centeno’s camp would not give Williams a rematch per Williams. In Centeno’s most recent fight he was stopped by Jermall Charlo in April dropping his record to 26-2.
Williams then won his next nine fights before the Charlo loss. He’s won his last three fights including defeating Ishe Smith, then 29-8 in November of 2017.
I remember when Philadelphia’s then unbeaten Mike “MJ” Jones and Williams would spar and you didn’t know who was who because it was that even of a typical “Philly gym war” like the old days.
The contenders ahead of Williams in the IBF were Gallimore and Maciej Sulecki, 26-1, after losing to Danny Jacobs the end of April. That only leaves Kanat Slam who is No. 3 since No. 1 and 2 are vacant. I cannot find Slam in Box Rec. IBF & WBA Champion Jarrett Hurd won a split decision in his most recent defense over Erislandy Lara who was No. 4 in the WBA. Williams should be in line for Hurd’s next defense.
In the WBC where Williams is No. 1 Jermell Charlo is the champion. In the WBO No. 3 but No. 1 Liam Smith, just lost to WBO champion Jaime Mingiae and No. 2 is Ireland’s Dennis “Hurricane” Hogan, 27-1-1, fighting out of Australia. Williams could fight an eliminator with Hogan in order to get a title fight with champion Mungia.
Showtime Boxing Results: Hurd Wins Thriller Over Lara, Williams and DeGale Victorious
By: William Holmes
Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions put on a triple header on the Showtime networks live from the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada.
The main event of the evening was between Erislandy Lara and Jarrett Hurd and the co-main event of the evening was between James DeGale and Caleb Truax which was a rematch of a mammoth upset in 2017.
The opening bout of the night was between Julian Williams (24-1-1) and Nathaniel Gallimore (20-1) in the junior middleweight division. The winner of this bout will likely be looking at a title shot in the near future.
Julian Williams was a big step up in competition for Nathaniel Gallimore and he stayed behind a strong jab and good side to side movement in the opening three rounds. Gallimore was able to land some shots on the inside, and landed and received some heavy shots in the fourth round.
Williams had a small mouse under his right eye in the fifth round that opened up from an unintentional headbutt. Williams began to focus on the body more in the middle rounds, though he looked a little tired in the fifth and sixth rounds.
Williams body work continued into the seventh, eight, and ninth rounds and it was visibly sapping the energy of Gallimore. Gallimore’s punches didn’t have much snap in the tenth round and Williams had Gallimore badly hurt in the eleventh round and looked close to stopping him.
It was an entertaining fight, with only one questionable scorecard at the end.
The final scores were 114-114, 116-112, and 117-110 in favor of Julian Williams.
After this bout Floyd Mayweather Jr. was interviewed by Showtime and indicated that if he was going to unretire he would fight in the octagon.
The co-main event of the night was between Caleb Truax (29-3-2) and James DeGale (23-2-1) for the IBF Super Middleweight Title.
Photo Credit: Showtime Twitter Account
DeGale showed the quicker hand speed and more accurate in the opening two rounds, but it featured many headbutts that often happen when a southpaw faces an orthodox fighter.
Truax applied heavy pressure in the third round which featured a hard-right hand to the chin of DeGale that sent him falling backwards into the ropes. DeGale had a cut by his right eye that the referee ruled was caused by a punch, but the video replay showed it was caused by a head-butt.
The Nevada commission informed the announce team in the fourth round that the ruling on the cut being caused by a punch still stood despite the video evidence.
Truax continued to come forward in the fourth through sixth rounds while DeGale badly bled. Truax however wasn’t able to land many effective combinations but he was pressing the action.
DeGale started to land some good counters in the seventh round and land some good short shots on the inside. DeGale had a very strong eighth and ninth rounds and often switched to an orthodox stance from his traditional southpaw stance.
Truax had cuts under both of his eyes by the ninth round and appeared to be tiring. DeGale lost a point in the tenth round for a deliberate shoulder strike.
The final two rounds were close and featured some tight action, but DeGale looked like he was landing the better punches.
The final scores were 117-110, 114-113, and 114-113 for James DeGale.
The main event of the night was between Jarrett Hurd (21-0) and Erislandy Lara (25-2-2) for the IBF and WBA Junior Middleweight Titles .
Photo Credit: Showtime Twitter Account
Hurd looked like he was two weight classes bigger than Lara, but Lara was able to find a home with his straight left hand early on and land some quick combinations in the second.
Hurd didn’t appear to be too bothered with Lara’s power and was able to land some good short shots on the inside and was making Lara back away from him in the fourth rounds.
Hurd showed he had a granite chin in the fifth round and was able to take the shots of Lara and answer with his own shots to the body. Lara appeared to tire in the sixth rounds as his back was against the ropes again, and he took a hard right hook at the end of the seventh round.
Hurd was able to land some very hard shots in the eighth round and had Lara’s eye puffed up badly in the ninth.
Lara was able to slow Hurd’s momentum in the 10th round with quick counters and being the first on the attack, and he was able to finish the eleventh round strong and maybe steal the round.
The twelfth round featured both boxers going for the knockout, but it was Hurd who landed a shot that sent his opponent to the mat. Lara looked badly hurt and face was swollen, but he was able to survive the round.
The scores were 114-113 Lara, 114-113 Hurd, and 114-113 Hurd.
Mayweather Promotions on Bounce TV Results: Williams defeats Smith
by B.A. Cass
Julian Williams defeated Ishe Smith tonight by unanimous decision. The scores were too lopsided to be taken seriously.
Photo Credit: Mayweather Promotions
In the first round, Williams used his quick, powerful jab to keep Smith at bay. But Smith didn’t back down and kept walking Williams down.
During the second round, it became clear that all Williams has to offer is the jab. Smith, on the other hand, is a multi-dimensional fighter. He put in work to the body while also throwing jabs and rights to the head.
Williams did utilize his right hand in the third round, but that was because Smith made him use it by bringing the action to Williams. During this round, Williams head-butted Smith causing a cut to open to the side of Smith’s left eye.
During the fourth round, Smith slipped and immediately got up. But Smith was soon reprimanded for hitting Williams with a low blow. Smith continued to work the body of his opponent during the third round, but his cut opened again.
The fight really started to get fun in the fifth round. Smith went for it—letting his hands go and hitting to the body and the head. Williams didn’t buckle, and he deserves credit for that. Just before the round ended, Smith landed a great right hand to the head.
For some inexplicable reason, Williams stopped using his jab during the sixth round. His jab had previously been his only defense against the more aggressive Smith. During the seventh, Williams head-butted Smith again, opening a new cut, this time above the left eye. This time the cut was bad, and the blood was coming down into Smith’s eye. In the next round, the referee paused the fight to get the doctor to look Smith’s cut, which was bleeding. “I can see,” Smith said, and the doctor gave his okay.
In the ninth round, Williams was more active, and the Smith’s hometown fans started chanting, “Ishe, Ishe, Ishe.” Williams was still forgoing the use of his jab, and because of this, Smith was able to land a series of clean combinations.
And then in the tenth round, Williams landed another headbutt. I say “landed” because it’s hard to believe that this third headbutt was accidental. Williams came at Smith like a soccer player trying to go for a header. Smith was hurt and stood for a moment doubled over. But the fight continued, and Smith was more active, as he had been for much of the fight. Smith ended strong.
It was a very close fight, but the scores did not reflect that at all. The scores were 99-91, 98-92 and 97-93 for Williams. But bad scoring is something fight fans have come to expect when a fight takes place in Las Vegas.
However, the fight between Earl Newman and Lionell Thompson was judged fairly.
In the first round, Thompson was more active but inflicted no damage to his opponent. Newman landed jabs, mostly to the chest, and seemed to be controlling the movement of the fight.
The second round was uneventful, except for the fact that Floyd Mayweather—wearing a white turtle and grey sportscoat—began offering advice to Thompson from his ringside seats.
Everything changed in the third round. It was during this round that Thompson landed a solid uppercut that staggered Newman. Thompson got his opponent against the ropes and may have finished him, had not the referee, Robert Byrd, interceded. Byrd didn’t stop the fight but instead offered Newman an eight count. It was unclear why Byrd decided to do this as Newman hardly touched the ropes.
During the fourth round, Newman was knocked down. He took his time getting up and once the fight resumed it appeared Newman’s legs had yet to recover. Byrd told him, “Got to show me something, son.”
By the fifth round, it became clear that Thompson was now controlling the movement of the fight. He was making Newman follow him around. Worse, Newman wasn’t letting his hands go. During the sixth round, Thompson began throwing combinations to the body and Newman was staggered once.
Newman started to pick up the pace a bit starting in the seventh round. He was throwing more combinations, but he was still too slow. For example, in the eighth round, he hit Thompson with a solid right but then paused before landing body shots, giving Thompson time to protect himself. Thompson wasn’t damaged by any of Newman’s shots.
Thompson performed much better than probably anyone expected. He was faster, more aggressive, and, baring the eighth and ninth rounds, more active than Newman. Thompson also showed brilliance in backing up and using the ropes to evade his opponent’s punches.
And so, it was no surprise when all three judges gave Lionell Thompson the win. It was the right choice, even if it put the dreams of the top-heavy Earl Newman, two-time NY Golden Gloves winner and formally undefeated fighter, on hold. It’s hard to see where Newman goes from here. He needed a decisive win to progress to the next level, but he has shown that he just isn’t that impressive.
Follow B.A. Cass on Twitter @WiththePunch
Mayweather Promotions Boxing Preview: Julian “J-Rock” Williams vs. Ishe Smith; Earl Newman vs. Lionell Thompson
by B.A. Cass
This Saturday at the Cosmopolitan of Las Vegas Mayweather Promotions brings us some interesting fights—well, potentially interesting. The fights will air on Bounce TV starting at 9 PM EST. I’m particularly excited to watch the main event between Julian Williams an Ishe Smith and the undercard fight between Earl Newman and Lionell Thompson. Here’s why.
Earl Newman (10-0-1) vs. Lionell Thompson (18-4); 10 rounds; light Heavyweight
In September, after a layoff of nearly a year, Newman fought Paul Parker, a contest that ended in a draw. Newman is a two-time New York Golden Gloves winner. He’s to be a talented boxer. However, he’s a top-heavy athlete who operates with a certain amount of caution in the ring. It’s unlikely that anyone is going to catch him with that one devastating shot.
Back in 2014, Thompson was knocked out by a fresh-faced Sergey Kovalev, a devastating loss that came in the third round. He has since won more than he’s lost, and he’s still a solid fighter. He doesn’t seem to like to let his hands go. He may just be the perfect opponent for Newman. Like Newman, no one would call Thompson fleet-footed. As far as styles go, they’ll be equally matched. Newman won’t have to worry about a barrage of combinations coming his way, which means he can concentrate on doing what he does best—working down his opponent and slowly breaking him down.
I’ll be watching to see whether Newman can finally distinguish himself as a future contender. He’s got skill and intelligence, but he needs an impressive win.
Julian “J-Rock” Williams (23-1-1) vs. Ishe Smith (28-8); 10 rounds; Junior Middleweights
The hard-hitting Williams may be best known for being the knocked out by Jermall Charlo. Williams landed a jab and right that just barely reached Charlo, who then stepped in with a sharp right uppercut. Williams’ legs gave out and he face-planted into the canvas. The referee started the count and, wavering slightly, Williams got to his feet. The fight continued, but only for a few seconds. Charlo came at him, throwing solid, though not hard-hitting, combinations. Williams fell to canvas again, this time on his back.
Since his defeat to Charlo, Williams has fought once, against Joshua Conley. For most of their fight, Conley was so inactive that he could be said to be stagnant. And although Williams worked Conley down, I doubt anyone would say he put on an impressive performance. In fact, for a man who hadn’t received much damage, he looked almost as tired as Conley.
Ishe Smith is twelve years older than Williams, and you can look at that two ways. One on hand, he clearly doesn’t have the speed he used to have, which should give the 27-year-old Williams a clear advantage. On the other hand, Smith has twelve years of experience on Williams. Also, Smith has faced superior opponents, and, even though he has lost to men like Erislandy and Lara and Danny Jacobs, he has never been knocked out.
Smith is crafty. He knows how to take a hit, knows how to draw an opponent in, knows how to tire a guy out, he knows how to duck and weave away from punches. He is a consummate professional.
Williams may be the favorite, he may have a better record, but from the looks of it, he still hasn’t gained his confidence back from his loss to Charlo—which means, Smith could surprise us.
Smith has had a hard year, a hard life actually. Not a man given to self-pity, Smith remains driven despite all the obstacles he’s had to face. He has put his children before his boxing career but this year was particularly hard for him as the mother of his three children was executed. At thirty-nine, he has only so much time remaining as a professional fighter. This fight will determine whether he continues. It’s hard not to root for a guy who’s been through so much.
Follow B.A. Cass on Twitter @WiththePunch
What About Jorge Juarez? The Man Who Nearly Beat Canelo Alvarez
By: Brian Strahan
Mexico, has its own California. Baja California. A feral peninsula, encompassed by the Pacific Ocean to its west, and the Sea of Cortez to its east. At its tip, bordering that other California, lies Tijuana. A city known in the past as much for its pull of Hollywood celebrities, who could gamble in relative anonymity, as it was for criminality, which eventually, morphed into a city more associated with cultural growth.
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-Hoganphotos/Golden Boy Promotions
It was here that Saúl “Canelo” Álvarez came close to suffering his first professional defeat. An opening flurry of victories as a 15-year-old, came at something of a canter. Similar to the only man who would ever defeat him – Floyd Mayweather Jr – Canelo had a family in his corner. Just not his own. Not far from his modest home in Juanacatlan on the fringes of Guadalajara, his brother Rigoberto introduced him to Chepo and Eddy Reynoso.
From the Julian Magdaleno Gym, were the father and son team trained the flame-haired Canelo, his route was plotted. Impressed by his speed of thought and power, the Reynoso’s didn’t feel, but knew he was ready. Such was his ferocity at the 2005 Junior Nationals, in the southern, busy city of Tuxtla Gutiérrez; no one his age, apart from the foolhardy, wanted to face him.
Turning professional at such a young age, is no big deal in Mexico. Other nations may scoff at the youthful age that boys are thrown in amongst men to fight. But Mexican boxing can point to the robust nature of their success, rooted in the tough start they allow their young boxers. Mexico can boast having more than 150 professional world champions in its pugilistic history. Only the United States can champion a stronger record.
So, there was nothing unorthodox in Canelo facing fellow Mexican Abraham Gonzalez in his first fight; Gonzalez three years his senior. That chasm in physical development, a lot wider in teens then a corresponding chasm for even marginally older boxers. It mattered little, however. A total knock out in the fourth and final round for Canelo.
Little changed for his second fight against Pablo Alvarado, very much his elder at 26. It was, physically and literally, man against boy. Again, an irrelevance. Alvarado lasted two rounds before Canelo ended his night.
The third test of this fledgling career would prove more demanding. Miguel Vazquez – again three years his senior – may have been making his professional debut, but he had genuine potential. Potential that he would go on to fulfill. But this welterweight fight was out of reach for a fighter who would go on to win a multitude of titles. His only defeat in a valiant 2013 unification loss to Mayweather by majority decision. Still though, against Vazquez, Canelo was made work. The split decision went his way.
Pedro Lopez, a month later, didn’t offer a similar challenge. Back in Canelo’s hometown of Guadalajara, Lopez, a fighter from the former colonial city of Tabasco, had little vigour to offer. Another knock out. It would be the beginning of a trend in a career that bore little fruit.
So on to the Auditorio Municipal in Tijuana. Perhaps more famed for its seminal Friday night dose of Lucha Libre; the Mexican variant of professional wrestling. With its spirited masks and costumes and comic-book style heroes and villains; it appeals to the masses as a sport and entertainment.
On June 17th, 2006, there was substantially less of the fanfare for the meeting of Canelo and Jorge Juarez. Not that the night itself was sedate. Hector Velazquez, a Tijuana local, and a solid career fighter, was the main draw. After he discarded compatriot Guadalupe Hernandez in a deeply one-sided affair, the crowd simply dispersed.
The undercard, as Canelo and Juarez were, came after the main event. Perhaps not the most carefully structured running order. What it meant was a sparse attendance and a quieter atmosphere, despite Juarez being a local. But three victories from eight against a relative unknown, was not enough to keep seats filled.
Maybe they should have stayed. What was missed was Canelo being tested. That was the function of Juarez. To try the properly strong Canelo against someone who would hold firm. Where some previous opponents had struggled to match his intensity, Juarez used the physicality and experience that came with his 8-year advantage. Canelo tired in the fourth-round bout and Juarez made connections.
If he didn’t quite school him; Juarez was in his element. This was as evenly matched a welterweight contest as there could have been. Juarez would have more defeats than victories up until his retirement in 2011. In 2015 Juarez returned but has had eight defeats on the bounce since.
Still though, the two came together at a time and a night when there was nothing to split them. The triumvirate of judges scored it 37-39, 38-38, 37-39. A one-point difference anywhere along the way could have meant another easily forgotten victory for Canelo. Or it could have meant Juarez being the only person outside of Floyd Mayweather to defeat Canelo in his professional career; to date.
How much relevance it will have on Saturday, who knows? But it has relevance for Juarez. And not because he can dine off a former glory. But because he showed he could match someone who was on his way to becoming one of the world’s best.
Peltz Boxing Returns to 2300 Arena with an All Philly Main Event Friday
By: Ken Hissner
IBHOF Promoter J Russell Peltz continues his tradition of Philly fighters fighting one another at the 2300 Arena in South Philly Friday night. In the Main Event he features Super welterweights Isaiah Wise against Fred Jenkins, Jr. There are 10 bouts scheduled with BAM Boxing’s Brittany Rogers also co-promoting and helping with the matchmaking.
Wise, 5-1 (3), has fought all his 6 fights at the 2300 Arena. Jenkins has fought his last 6 fights at the same venue. His father and trainer Fred Jenkins, Sr., is a PA BHOF trainer out of the ABC Rec Gym in North Philly.
In the co-feature Philly’s Super featherweight Avery Sparrow, 7-1 (3), taking on Canadian Joey Laviolette, 6-0 (4), of Sackville, Nova Scotia. The latter is a 4-time Canadian National Champion. Sparrow is 2-0 in 2017.
Philly’s Super welterweight Elijah Vines, 4-0 (4), is making his home debut against Gilbert Alex Sanchez, 5-7-1 (2), of Camden, NJ, who is coming back from 2 years of inactivity. Highly touted welterweight prospect Julian “Hammer Hands” Rodriguez, 15-0 (10), of Hasbrouck Heights, NJ, returns to action after 10 months taking on Dario “Macizo” Ferman, 14-2 (11), of Chihuahua, MEX.
Also on the under card are Philly welterweight prospect Marcel Rivers, 2-0 (1), Upper Darby Super welterweight Brandon Robinson, 5-1 (4), Philly lightweight Jae Ho Kim, 6-4-1 (2) formerly of South Korea, Philly debuting middleweight Leon DeShields and PR Super lightweight Victor Padilla, 3-0 (2), of Berlin, NJ, who is another good prospect will be among those on the undercard.
USA Comcast SportsNet will televise.
Julian “J-Roc” Loses – When Will Philadelphia Jinx End?
Julian “J-Roc” Loses – When Will Philadelphia Jinx End?
By: Ken Hissner
The “Philadelphia Jinx” continued Saturday night in L.A. when No. 1 IBF contender Julian “J-Roc” Williams was stopped by IBF champion Jermall Charlo in 5 rounds. Many in Philadelphia felt Williams had a good chance of ending the jinx and winning the title. That was then and now is now.
The once city of “Brotherly Love” or better “Brotherly Shove” still has Danny “Swift” Garcia who tries to unify his WBC title against WBA welterweight champion Keith Thurman on March 4th. One of his WBC contenders is “The New” Ray Robinson ranked No. 5 from Philadelphia who is biting at the bit hoping he gets the winner of that fight.
In February of 2016 “Hammerin” Hank Lundy was stopped by WBC/WBO super lightweight champion Terence Crawford. In April Eric “Outlaw” Hunter lost a winnable fight to Lee Selby for his IBF featherweight title after having Selby on the canvas. Neither Lundy nor Hunter are going to win a “congeniality” award. Also, in 2016 two-time IBF cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham tried winning the WBO title but lost to Krzysztof Glowacki in April. At 40 Cunningham is no longer in any of the rankings.
In 2015 heavyweight Bryant “By By” Jennings got a pair of title bouts. First losing to Wladimir Klitschko for his titles in April and then to Louis Ortiz for his WBA interim title in December. Jennings does remain No. 5 in the WBC.
Maybe he can get a shot at Deontay “Bronze Bomber” Wilder since Wilder never defends against anyone in the top 4 of the WBC.
In his last fight former world middle and light heavyweight champion Bernard “The Alien” Hopkins lost WBA/IBF titles in November of 2014 being shut-out by Sergey Kovalev the then only WBO champion.
Though living in Hockessin, DE, for years Hopkins is still known as a “Philly fighter” and will be having his “last” fight on December 17th a month away from his 52nd birthday and having not fought in two years against Joe Smith, Jr.
Going back to January of 2013 Philly’s Gabe “King” Rosado by-passed fighting for the super welterweight title to take on Gennady “GGG” Golovkin for his middleweight titles. It took two workers to clean up the ring that Rosado left quite a bit of his blood. At least he fought one of the best in the world at the time.
Going back to June 2012 Mike “MJ” Jones looked like he would be a sure winner taking on former IBF super lightweight champion Randall “The Knockout King” Bailey for the vacant IBF welterweight title but was knocked out!
In 2011 Rogers “Tiger” Mtagwa got a title fight losing to WBC featherweight champion Jhonny Gonzalez. In the previous year Mtagwa lost to Yuriorkis Gamboa in January of 2010 for his WBA title. He was stopped both times.
At present besides Jennings Philadelphia has three contenders. Robinson at No. 3 and unbeaten Jesse “Hard Work” Hart who is No. 1 in the WBO, No. 5 WBC and No. 11 in the WBA. He just made his return to the ring with a victory after being on the sidelines with a hand injury. Hart has all the tools but sometimes thinks he’s like his dad Eugene “Cyclone” Hart and is also a knockout fighter instead of a boxer-fighter with the size to do both in the super middleweight division.
Another is super featherweight Tevin “American Idol” Farmer, 24-4-1 (5) who is on a 17 fight winning streak since losing to current IBF world champion Jose Pedraza. Farmer in Ranked No. 3 in the WBC, No. 7 IBF and No. 10 WBO.
Philadelphia is full of prospects such as super lightweight 20 year-old Milton “El Santo” Santiago at 16-0 but with only 3 knockouts. Since losing his head trainer “Bozy” Ennis he has failed to impress in his last 3 fights. His father took over and seems to be trying to make his son more of a puncher. Remember the name Cesar Cuenca of Argentina who was 48-0 with TWO knockouts when he lost fighting for the world time? You don’t always have to have a lot of KO’s on your record to be a champion.
What this writer calls the “Fab Four” are now 21-0-1 since turning professional in 2016. It includes at the top is welterweight Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 7-0 (6), with Christian Carto at 5-0 (5) in the bantamweight division, heavyweight Darmani “Tight” Rock, 6-0 (4), and super lightweight Joshua Jones, 3-0-1 (2).
Besides these four are the Pizarro brothers, super bantamweight Angel 2-0 (1) at 21 and 17 year-old lightweight Branden 1-0 who are schedule on December 16th to fight on a Philadelphia card at the Sugar House Casino along with Carto and Ennis. Super bantamweight Manny Folly is on the card at 8-0 (6), but being a Philadelphia policeman has not made him as available as if he was a boxer alone.
Let’s hope 2017 is a better year for the “Philadelphia Jinx” to be abolished!
Mares Impresses, Charlo Destroys In Satisfying Showtime Card
Mares Impresses, Charlo Destroys In Satisfying Showtime Card
It was a battle of undefeateds Saturday night in California as Jernall Charlo – 24-0 – defended his IBF super welterweight title against Philadelphia tough guy Julian Williams – 22-0-1 – at the USC campus in Los Angeles. This was no mere tuneup. This was two top divisional fighters throwing down. It was, in short, the real thing. Both men were active and sharp in the first, with no one landing anything too significant. Things remained sharp in the second until – bang – Charlo dropped his man with a jab. Williams beat the count and the two men took to banging away for the next several seconds. Things settled down – but then Williams landed hard himself.
It was becoming an exciting affair.
Things got a bit quiet in the third – at least by the standards that had been set by the match so far. In the fourth, Williams started landing clean and hard with some consistency. It remained, however, a very close bout. Williams continued to land in the fifth, but an absolutely thunderous shot from Charlo put Williams down in highlight reel fashion. Williams managed to get up – but Charlo put him right back down again and that was the end of the fight.
Unfortunately, in an act of bad sportsmanship, Charlo refused to tap William’s offered glove after the fight. It was an off putting footnote to an impressive performance. Afterwards, however, the man publicly expressed remorse when being interviewed by Showtimes’ Jim Grey. “I apologize for me being a fighter and letting my emotions take over me,” he said.
The audience at USC appeared to be unforgiving, but that didn’t take away the fact the man apologized in public. What more could be expected of the guy?
It was then time for the main event. Thirty-one-year-old Abner Mares – 29-2-1 – was giving what might be a last grasp at glory by facing the menacing 28-1 Jesus Cuellar for Cuellar’s WBA featherweight title. The first round belonged to the veteran challenger, Mares, who controlled space and fired effectively. Cuellar started trying to rough his man up in the second and managed to find some success. Mares, however, wasn’t simply going to roll over.
Cuellar began asserting himself in the third, moving forward and landing hard. Mares landed straight and clean in the first minute of the fourth. Indeed, the experienced pro re-asserted himself and took the round. Mares went on to employ an impressive skill set throughout the fifth. Cuellar, however, kept the fight very close in the sixth, possibly taking the round with a clean shot in the final seconds. And indeed, things remained close and exciting throughout the seventh.
Yet Mares looked completely in control in the eighth. As the fight moved onto the later rounds it became clear that Mares controlled tempo and distance – but Cuellar landed the harder shots. Depending on one’s preference, it wasn’t hard seeing the rounds go to one man or another. Mares landed hard after the bell at the end of the ninth, of course, but illegal shots simply don’t count. Things remained incredibly close in the tenth – but then Cuellar tasted the canvas in the eleventh.
Cuellar got up, but it looked like Mares was going to stop him. Cuellar managed to survive the round and even remained competitive. Still, it was clear by that point that Mares had the edge. Mares played defense in the center of the ring in the twelfth and began raising his hands in victory before the round even ended. Here was a supremely confident man.
Ultimately, the judges went for Mares by split decision. Those who had possibly written Mares’ career off after his 2015 loss to Leo Santa Cruz had clearly done so too soon.
Showtime Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Joshua vs. Eric Molina, Cuellar vs. Mares, Charlo vs. Williams
Showtime Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Joshua vs. Eric Molina, Cuellar vs. Mares, Charlo vs. Williams
By: William Holmes
Showtime will be televising three world title fights on Saturday from two separate locations. The first bout they will be showing is an IBF Heavyweight Title Bout between Anthony Joshua and Eric Molina in Manchester, England. Coincidentally, HBO will also be showing a heavyweight title bout around the same time.
The other two bouts they will be showing is a WBA Featherweight Title bout between Jesus Cuellar and Abner Mares, as well as a very intriguing IBF Junior Middleweight Title bout between Jermall Charlo and Julian Williams.
Two of the three bouts should be very competitive and intriguing bouts, with only the heavyweight bout having a clear and hands down favorite.
The following is a preview of all three world title bouts.
Anthony Joshua (17-0) vs. Eric Molina (25-3); IBF Heavyweight Title
Of the three world title fights that Showtime is televising, this is by far, the biggest mismatch.
Eric Molina is thirty four years old and seven years older than his opponent. He will be giving up three inches in reach and two inches in height. He also has three knockout losses and will be facing an opponent that has defeated every single boxer he’s faced as a professional by stoppage.
Molina does have nineteen knockouts, but he was unable to stop nine of his opponents.
Anthony Joshua has been very active in the past two years. He has already fought twice in 2016 and fought five times in 2015. Molina fought once in 2016 and three times in 2015.
Joshua has the edge in amateur experience. He won the gold medal in the Super Heavyweight division in 2012. Joshua will also be fighting in front of a friendly crowd in Manchester, England.
The only reason Molina is fighting Joshua is because he scored a huge upset over the veteran Tomasz Adamek in his last fight in Adamek’s home country of Poland. However, his list of notable victories is short. His biggest wins have come against Adamek, DaVarryl Williamson, and Tony Grano. He has lost, by stoppage, to Deontay Wilder, Chris Arreola, and Ashanti Jordan.
Joshua has defeated the likes of Dominic Breazeale, Charles Martin, Dillian Whyte, Gary Cornish, and Kevin Johnson.
Every single victory that Joshua has earned has come by way of stoppage. Every single loss that Molina has suffered has come by way of stoppage.
The expectations are that those trends will continue.
Jesus Cuellar (28-1) vs. Abner Mares (29-2-1); WBA Featherweight Title
Abner Mares has had recent issues with his eyes and it has been questioned if he should ever fight again.
Mares is a good boxer, but he’s a former bantamweight world champion and is likely fighting in a higher weight class than he should be.
Mares will be giving up an inch and a half in height to Jesus Cuellar and will be giving up two inches in reach. Cuellar also has the edge in power. He has twenty one stoppage victories, all at a higher weight class than what Mares is used to competing in. Mares’ power hasn’t followed him as he’s gone up in weight classes but he still has fifteen stoppage victories.
Mares is two years older than Cuellar, but has been in the ring with some of the best bantamweights the sport of boxing has to offer. His losses were to Leo Santa Cruz and Jhonny Gonzlaez. He has defeated the likes of Daniel Ponce De Leon, Jonathan Oquendo, Anselmo Moreno, Eric Morel, Joseph Agbeko, and Vic Darchinyan.
Cuellar hasn’t fought the same level of competition that Mares has fought as a professional, but he still has an impressive resume. He has defeated Jonathan Oquendo, Vic Darchinyan, Ruben Tamayo, Juan Manuel Lopez, and Rico Ramos. His lone loss was in 2011 to Oscar Escandon.
The biggest question mark about Cuellar on Saturday will be ring rust. He had no fights in 2016 and will be in the ring with an experienced opponent.
Mares does have the edge in amateur experience. Cuellar experienced some success in regional tournaments as an amateur, but Mares represented Mexico in the 2004 Olympics.
Mares career appears to be on the downside of his career. He’s good enough to make the fight competitive and close with Cuellar, but Cuellar is the naturally bigger boxer and should be considered the favorite.
Jermall Charlo (24-0) vs. Julian Williams (22-0-1); IBF Junior Middleweight Title
If you talk to anyone involved in the Philadelphia boxing scene, they will tell you that Julian “J-Rock” Williams is one of Philadelphia’s best boxers and has the potential to be a world champion.
That reputation may have hurt Williams’ chances at securing a title shot as he has been avoided by many the past two years, but he’ll get his first chance at a world title against a very dangerous champion.
Jermall Charlo, one half of the Charlo twins, is the same age as Williams but will have a one inch height and a one inch reach advantage over Williams. He also has more knockout victories. He has stopped eighteen of the boxers he’s faced while Williams has only stopped fourteen.
They both had good amateur careers, but neither can claim any international amateur success.
Charlo has the more impressive professional resume. He has defeated the likes of Austin Trout, Wilky Campfort, Cornelius Bundrage, and Antwone Smith. Two of Charlo’s past four fights were stoppage victories.
Williams has had trouble attracting a top name opponent into the ring with him, but he has beaten fighters such as Marcello Matano, Luciano Leonel Cuello, Joey Hernandez, Freddy Hernandez, and Joachim Alcine. However, William’s power appears to be improving as he has stop four of his past five opponents.
Everything on paper appears to suggest that Charlo should be the favorite on Saturday, but Williams has been avoided for a reason, and this writer believes Williams will win the IBF Junior Middleweight Title on Saturday.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Julian Williams, Lucas Browne, Jack, DeGale, Peralta, and more…
Boxing Insider Notebook: Julian Williams, Lucas Browne, Jack, DeGale, Peralta, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of November 15th to November 22nd, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Photo Credit: Leo Wilson/Premier Boxing Champions
Lucas Browne Tests Positive Again
Dan Rafael of ESPN recently reported that heavyweight contender Lucas Browne has failed his second drug test of the year.
The drug test was performed by the Voluntary Anti Doping Association as part of the WBC’s Clean Boxing Program and Browne tested positive for the banned substance ostarine. VADA has notified the WBC.
Read more at: http://www.espn.com/boxing/story/_/id/18110513/heavyweight-contender-lucas-browne-fails-another-drug-test
12 Rounds with Junior Middleweight World Title Challenger Julian Williams
The following interview can also be found at the Premier Boxing Champions website. This was conducted with Junior Middleweight Title Challenger Julian Williams, who is scheduled to face Jermall Charlo on December 10th on Showtime.
Do you have a boxing hero?
I respect Muhammad Ali as a modern hero in history for the things he stood for-not just for what did in boxing. To me, Ali’s boxing [accomplishments] are relative and a smaller part of his legacy compared to what stood for outside of the ring.
Muhammad Ali’s true greatness was represented by what he did for the world and the stands he took more than his fights.
Of all the boxers in history, who do you wish you could’ve fought, and how would the fight have played out?
I don’t want to give you a result, but I would say Sugar Ray Robinson, because in my opinion, he is the best fighter who ever lived. And I would want to see how I would stand up against the best fighter ever to wear a pair of gloves.
Sugar Ray Robinson had everything-great punch selection, the skills, the jab, the speed. He was a tremendous fighter. I’ve never seen anybody as good before or since.
This was during a time when guys were fighting with six-ounce horsehair gloves two or three times a month. They were doing that against the best competition. I mean, he would fight Jake LaMotta and Kid Gavilan in 15-round fights. They just don’t build men like that no more. It doesn’t happen.
Sugar Ray Robinson would bring out the best in me and give me a great gauge about how good I actually am. I would never disrespect Sugar Ray Robinson by saying I would beat him. I respect the legends. I would just like to see how good I would do against those types of guys.
Finish this sentence: If not for boxing, I would be …
… probably just finishing up college, paying back student loans and being miserable. I would probably be a major in business administration.
What’s the public’s biggest misconception about boxers?
That we’re all stupid.
What’s the hardest you’ve ever been hit, and how you did you deal with it?
You know what, I’m not trying to sound cocky or anything, but I don’t remember. I’ve had some tough fights, but I don’t really recall an opponent who has really hurt me like that.
It’s never been where I was like, “Oh my God, he punches so hard,” or “He hit me so hard, I couldn’t get myself together.” I’ve never experienced that. I’m not saying that it can’t happen; I’m just saying that it hasn’t happened.
Excluding yourself, who’s the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world today?
It’s close, because I don’t think anyone has taken the lead for now. I would probably say Andre Ward, but at the same time he’s had so much time off.
You’ve got guys like Sergey Kovalev out there who have been dismantling everybody, and then you’ve got guys like Guillermo Rigondeaux who is probably the best fighter in the world, but he’s never gotten the opportunity to prove it on the big stage.
Then you’ve got Floyd Mayweather Jr., who I think is the clear-cut best fighter in the world when he’s active. But he’s retired.
It’s just hard to pick one. I couldn’t pick one. I would be able to pick one at the beginning of the next year.
What kind of food is the toughest to give up while training for a fight?
I like pasta and red meat. I don’t eat too much red meat when I’m training, because it’s too hard to cut. I like steak and lamb and pasta. I just like all pasta in general.
Speaking of training, what’s your favorite exercise?
I don’t really have any. I hate them all. I just do them because I have to do them.
What about a favorite punch to throw?
It depends on who I’m fighting, but I would definitely have to say the jab, because the jab sets everything up. That’s usually my range finder, and I can usually control the fight with the jab. I pretty much use it in every fight to good effect.
Do you have a favorite boxing movie?
Raging Bull. I liked Rocky, also. I mostly liked all of the Rocky movies.
Who is the one artist on your playlist that would surprise fight fans?
Teddy Pendergrass. I grew up with my mother and father liking his music.
Would you rather run over a linebacker or juke him out of his shoes?
That depends on who it is. If it’s [retired Baltimore Ravens legend] Ray Lewis, I would have to juke him. Because I don’t want to be hit by him.
Finish this sentence: People would be surprised to know that …
… I’m an amazing cook. I can cook a lot of things-pretty much anything.
If you could change one thing in the world, what would it be?
Race relations. The world would be a better place if everybody didn’t see so much color.
What’s on your life’s bucket list?
I want to be a world champion, which I can accomplish in my next fight by beating Jermall Charlo. This is what I’ve been working so hard for my entire life.
I don’t have a bucket-list wish to go skydiving before it’s all over or go to Japan or anything. It’s simple: I’ve been working half of my life to become a world champion, and that’s the most important thing on my bucket list.
Lipinets to Face Zappavigna on Mares vs. Cuellar Undercard
An exciting night of undercard action comes to Los Angeles on Saturday, December 10 and is highlighted by hard-hitting unbeaten contender Sergey Lipinets (10-0, 8 KOs) in a 12-round junior welterweight world title eliminator against Australia’s Lenny Zappavigna (35-2, 25 KOs) from the Galen Center at USC.
The December 10 event is headlined by a featherweight world championship showdown between WBA titleholder Jesus Cuellar and former three-division world champion Abner Mares. The live SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXINGâ telecast begins at 10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT with junior middleweight world champion Jermall Charlo taking on undefeated top contender Julian Williams in a matchup of undefeated rising stars in their prime.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Ringstar Sports and TGB Promotions, are on sale now and are priced at $35, $50, $75, $150 and $200. To purchase tickets go to www.galentix.com.
Also featured as part of the jam-packed night of fights are undefeated rising contenders Erickson “Hammer” Lubin (16-0, 11 KOs) in a junior middleweight bout and Mario Barrios (16-0, 8 KOs) battling Argentina’s Claudio Rosendo Tapia (24-18-4, 9 KOs) in junior lightweight action.
An array of talented fighters from the Los-Angeles area round out the evening as Oxnard’s Hugo “The Boss” Centeno Jr. (24-1, 12 KOs) competes in a middleweight attraction, former title challenger Josesito Lopez (33-7, 19 KOs) of Riverside in a six-round welterweight fight and Abner Mares’ younger brother, Adan Mares (14-1-3, 3 KOs) enters the ring in a lightweight bout.
An accomplished amateur who was born in Kazakhstan but fights out of Russia, Lipinets turned pro in April of 2014 with a decision victory over Franklin Varela. The 27-year-old recorded six knockouts in a row before stepping up in competition and impressing with a victory over Haskell Lydell Rhodes in March 2015 and a knockout of Levan Ghvamichava in March. He kept the momentum going in July when he stopped established contender Walter Castillo in the seventh round. He will challenge the 29-year-old Zappavigna out of New South Wales, Australia. He enters this fight the winner of his last 10 contests, including his most recent triumph, a sixth-round stoppage of Ik Yang in July.
A highly regarded prospect with an exciting style, the 21-year-old Lubin burst onto the scene looking to finish opponents early as he cements his status as an elite contender. Fighting out of Orlando, he has already taken down experienced veterans including Orlando Lora, Ayi Bruce, Michael Finney and Norberto Gonzalez. He was sensational in November 2015 when he knocked out Alexis Camacho and in January he headlined his first card and dominated Jose De Jesus Macias in his first 10-round bout. He has kept the hot streak going in June by stopping veteran Daniel Sandoval in the third round and dominating veteran Ivan Montero in July.
Badou Jack vs. James DeGale Set for Showtime on January 14th
WBC Super Middleweight World Champion Badou Jack (20-1-2, 12 KOs) and IBF Super Middleweight World Champion James DeGale (23-1, 14 KOs) will look to stake their claim as the best 168-pound fighter in the world when they meet in a title unification clash on Saturday, January 14 from Barclays Center in Brooklyn and live on SHOWTIME as boxing returns to New York for the first time in five months.
The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXINGâ telecast will also feature undefeated junior lightweight world champion Jose “Sniper” Pedraza (22-0, 12 KOs) defending his title against up-and-coming Mayweather Promotions’ undefeated contender Gervonta “The One” Davis (16-0, 15 KOs).
“I’m expecting a very tough fight from James DeGale,” said Jack. “But I’m very confident that I’m going to win the fight and become the unified champion. This is an incredible stage to be at Barclays Center and on SHOWTIME and I’m going to take full advantage of it. I’m ready to make my mark as the best in the division.”
“I am so happy that this fight has finally been made,” said DeGale. “This is the best fighting the best. This is what boxing is all about. Badou Jack is a very good fighter and he’s underrated. I am going to have to be 100 percent on my game to beat him, but I am confident I will deliver on January 14. I have already fulfilled my dream of becoming a world champion and now it is time to unify.”
“Davis is a great young fighter with an impressive record,” said Pedraza. “He is a complete fighter and I am very happy to fight a challenger of his caliber. However, I do feel that Davis has been protected so I plan to really show off in this fight and perform at my best. Defeating Davis will be a great start to 2017, a year I would love to unify my division. I am thrilled to be back on SHOWTIME and look forward to putting on a great show for all those in attendance at Barclays Center.”
“I’m excited for the opportunity to fight a respected undefeated world champion like Jose Pedraza,” said Davis. “I’m also ready to show the boxing world what I’m capable of doing. Boxing is searching for its next star and I believe that I’m the one. On January 14, I plan to show what over 200 amateur wins and 12 years of training with coach Calvin Ford looks like. Baltimore, we’re here. Brooklyn, I’m ready to shine for you. Jose Pedraza, get ready. I’m coming to kick your a**.”
“Mayweather Promotions is pleased to have the opportunity to bring this huge event to Brooklyn and Barclays Center,” said Floyd Mayweather, President of Mayweather Promotions. “Badou Jack versus James DeGale is one of the best match-ups in the sport. It’s the best fighting the best. I believe that Badou Jack has what it takes to be a unified world champion. I’m also excited to see Gervonta Davis fight for his first world title. He has the skills to be a fighter who carries the sport. He has a tough, undefeated world champion in front of him and I am looking forward to seeing him perform on January 14. These are two evenly-matched fights that will bring a lot of explosive action to the ring on fight night, you don’t want to miss it.”
David Peralta to Take On Berlin Abreu on December 10th
David Peralta will take on Berlin Abreu in a scheduled 10-round bout for the WBC Latino Welterweight title on a massive card that will take place on Saturday, December 10th at the Sands Bethlehem Event Center.
The show, which is promoted by GH3 Promotions, King’s Promotions and Sampson Boxing, will be televised LIVE on ONE World Sports beginning at 9 PM ET.
Peralta of Cordoba, Argentina has a record of 26-2-1 with 14 knockouts and is coming off the biggest win of his career, when he upset former world champion Robert Guerrero on August 27th in Anaheim, California.
The 34 year-old is an 11 year professional, who won his first 20 fights. As the underdog, Peralta was able to outbox Guerrero and stun the former unanimous decision and the former cab driver was quickly hailed as a legitimate contender in the welterweight division.
Abreu of Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic has a record of 13-1 with 11 knockouts.
The 24 year-old is a six year professional and has knocked out his last six opponents, which includes a 1st round stoppage over Juan Carlos Contreras on October 22, 2015.
Seeing action in an 8-round bout will be undefeated super middleweight Ronald Ellis (12-0-1, 10 KO’s) of Lynn, Massachusetts taking on Oscar Riojas (10-6-1, 3 KO’s) of Monterrey, Mexico. Ellis, age 27 is a five year professional won his first 12 bouts. In his last outing, Ellis fought a draw with Jerry Odom on February 19th in Atlantic City.
Riojas, 33 years-old is a former WBC FECOMBOX Super Middleweight champion.
The three year professional, will be making his fifth appearance in 2016 and is coming off a stoppage defeat to Vyacheslav Shabranskyy on August 19th in Los Angeles.
Also appearing in televised action will be former two-time welterweight world champion, Kermit Cintron taking on Rosemberg Gomez in an eight-round battle. Cintron of Reading, Pa., has a record of 38-5-2 with 29 knockouts. The 37 year-old is a 16 year professional, who has reached the top of the mountain on two occasions. Cintron won his first 22 bouts, which included wins over Elio Ortiz (25-6), Luis Rosado (29-5), Ian Mackillop (14-1), Omar Davila (12-2), Said Ouali (7-0) and Leon Pearson (9-1-1)
On July 17, 2004, Cintron stopped Teddy Reid in 8 rounds to capture the WBO Interim Welterweight title.
Michael Dutchover Remains Perfect
Junior lightweight Michael Dutchover (2-0, 2 KOs) kicked off this past Friday’s “New Blood” boxing event in Ontario, CA. with a devastating first round knockout of Sergio Campos (0-1). Dutchover bolted out of his corner with a fierce attack that put Campos, who was making his professional debut, on the defensive immediately. Dutchover unloaded power shots to the body and landed a left hook that dropped Campos for good at the :51 mark.
Dutchover fights out of Midland, Tex. and is trained by Danny Zamora. He is promoted by Banner Promotions and Thompson Boxing.