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Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Results: Lomachenko Stops Linares in the Tenth


By: William Holmes

Madison Square Garden in New York City was the host site for tonight’s collaborative effort between Top Rank Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions to put on a highly anticipated main event between Vasyl Lomachenko and Jorge Linares for the WBA Lightweight Title.

The opening bout of the night was between Carlos Adames (13-0) and Alejandro Barrera (29-4) in the welterweight division.

Adames is a high ceiling prospect for Top Rank and he made it known why early on. His straight right hand was finding it’s home often and he was in control. Barrera was able to sneek some punches in past the guard of Adames, but they didn’t appear to hurt him.

In the sixth round he switched to a southpaw stance and was still able to land shots at will. His power shots came from his right hand, but he was still fluid and smooth in his southpaw stance.


Photo Credit: Top Rank Twitter Account

Barrera was able to do some decent body work in the seventh round and was a little more effective. His counter uppercut found it’s home but Adames was landing the harder shots. Barrera continued to hang in the fight into the eighth round and showed a willingness to exchange, and he may have stolen the round when he landed some short shots on Adames when his back was against the ropes.

The ninth round featured fierce exchanges and started with Barrera walking Adames down, but Adames was able to turn the momentum back in his favor with sharp left hooks. A clash of heads occurred in the final moments of the ninth round that caused a cut by the right eye of Barrera.

Barrera needed a knockout in the final round to win, and he was the more active fighter and landed more shots in the final round, but that knockout never came.

Carlos Adames wins by decision with scores of 97-93, 96-94, and 98-92.

The main event of the night was between Jorge Linares (44-3) and Vasyl Lomachenko (10-1) for the WBA Lightweight Title.

Lomachenko, the favorite, entered the ring first while the champion, Linares, entered second.


Photo Credit: Top Rank Twitter Account

Linares looked like the significantly bigger man in the ring and was able to land his straight left hand from his southpaw stance early on in the first round. Linares though was accurate with his counter punches in the first and landed a good lead left hook at the end of the round.

Lomachenko looked to be a little looser in the second round and was landing more, and by the third round his foot movement was on point as he danced around Linares and landed multiple combinations. Lomachenko continued to stay on the attack in the fourth round. Linares was warned for rabbit punches in the fourth and Lomachenko responded by landing hard right uppercuts.

Lomachenko was able to bloody the nose of Linares in the fifth round. Linares was warned for a low blow in the fifth and sixth rounds and appeared to be fading fast. However, a clean straight right hand by Linares in the sixth round sent Lomachenko to the mat.

Linares pressed the action in the seventh round and Lomachenko was no longer on the offensive. Linares was able to land good shots to the body and head of Lomachenko.

Lomachenko looked like he was recovered by the eight round and was able to get a cut over the left eye of Linares. Lomachenko was focusing on that cut throughout the remainder of the eighth round as momentum swung back in his favor.

Linares and Lomachenko had several good exchanges in the ninth round and that round could have been scored either way, but it appeared Lomachenko was landing more shots than Linares but Linares was landing the harder shots.

Linares came right at Lomachenko in the beginning of the tenth round but Lomachenko was able to slow him down with an accurate jab. Lomachenko connected with a multi punch combination to the head and ended it with a liver shot that sent Linares crumbling in pain to the mat.

The referee counted to nine before waiving off the fight as he could tell that Linares was unable to continue.

Lomachenko wins by body shot knockout at 2:08 of the tenth round.

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Top Rank Boxing on ESPN Preview: Linares vs. Lomachenko, Adames vs. Barrera


By: William Holmes

On Saturday night two of boxing’s best pound for pound fighters, Jorge Linares and Vasyl Lomachenko will square off in a WBA Lightweight Title bout at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Bob Arum’s Top Rank Promotions and Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions will be working together and will televise this fight on ESPN.

The co-feature of the night will be a welterweight bout between Carlos Adames and Alejandro Barrera. Other prospects on the fight card include Michael Conlan, Teofimo Lopez, and Jamel Herring. Conlan may appear on the televised portion of the card due to his popularity, but that bout should be an easier victory for him.


Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank Boxing

The following is a preview of the co-featured bout and the main event of the night.

Carlos Adames (13-0) vs. Alejandro Barrera (29-4); Welterweights

Carlos Adames is a prized prospect with heavy hands. He’s only twenty four years old and will be seven years younger than Barrera on fight night. He will also have a significant three inch reach advantage.

Adames has been very active. He fought three times in 2017 and four times in 2016. Barrera fought twice in 2017 and did not fight in 2016.

Adames has considerable power. He has stopped eleven of his opponents and only one of his past ten opponents was able to make it the full fight. Barrera has eighteen stoppage victories, but he has lost two of his past four fights.

Adames is a former Pan American Gold Medalist and competed in the world amateur championships. Barrera has no notable amateur career to speak of.

Adames has fought mainly in the Dominican Republic, his past nine fighters were there. He has defeated the likes of Carlos Molina, Jean Carlos Prada, and Ivan Alvarez. Barrera has defeated the likes of Eddie Gomez and Juan Macias Montiel. He has losses to Armando Robles, Rmases Agaton, Errol Spence Jr., and Keandre Gibson.

Barrera is talented enough to score an occasional upset, as evident in his win over Eddie Gomez. But Adames looks like he will be too talented for Barrera to handle.

Jorge Linares (44-3) vs. Vasyl Lomachenko (10-1); WBA Lightweight Title

Jorge Linares used to be a top boxer in Top Rank’s stable of fighters, but back to back losses to Sergio Thompson and Antonio DeMarco in late 2011 early 2012 forced Top Rank to let Linares loose and allowed for Golden Boy Promotions to pick him up.

He has since won thirteen fights in a row and his name has often come up in conversation as one of boxing’s best pound for pound fighters.
However, he’ll be facing a true legend in the sport with only eleven professional fights, Vasyl Lomachenko.

Lomachenko has eight stoppage victories and will be giving up about an inch in height and three and a half inches in reach to Linares. Lomachenko will be two years younger than Linares, but both boxers are still considered by most to be in their athletic primes.

Linares has twenty seven stoppage wins, but his past four fights were won by decision. Lomacheno fought three times in 2017 and twice in 2016 while Linares fought twice in 2017 and once in 2016.

Lomachenko’s lone loss was a controversial one to Orlando Salido, who came in overweight. He has defeated the likes of Guillermo Rigondeaux, Miguel Marriaga, Jason Sosa, Nicholas Walters, Roman Martinez, and Gary Russell Jr.

Linares has losses to Sergio Thompson, Antonio DeMarco, and Juan Carlos Salgado. He has defeated the likes of Oscar Larios, Mercito Gesta, Luke Campbell, Anthony Crolla, Kevin Mitchell, and Nihto Arakawa.

It is extremely rare to find someone with the amateur resume of Vasyl Lomachenko. He was a two time Olympic Gold Medalist. Linares was a national champion as an amateur in Venezuela.

Linares has excellent footwork and incredible accuracy, but Lomachenko also has excellent footwork and accuracy and in fact, probably has better footwork than Linares. Linares can hang with anyone in the first half of a fight, but he tends to fade late. Lomachenko has never shown signs of fading in a ring.

Lomachenko does have problems with fighters who are known for being rough on the inside and willing to fight a little dirty, like Orlando Salido. Linares is not that type of fighter. He’s known for his technique and finesse.

Linares will have a size advantage on Saturday night, and he’d be wise to use it. But Lomachenko’s movement and accuracy will should win him the fight, especially in the later rounds.

This writer thinks Linares will be able to keep it close early on, but will fade late and eventually succumb to a Lomachenko barrage.

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Media Workout Notes & Quotes: Lomachenko and Linares Hit the Streets of NYC


Vasiliy Lomachenko and Jorge Linares took their talents to the streets of Manhattan on Wednesday, as they participated in an open workout on the corner of 33rd Street and 8th Avenue, just outside Madison Square Garden.

Lomachenko, a two-weight world champion, is looking to conquer a third weight class when he challenges WBA/Ring Magazine lightweight champion Jorge Linares on Saturday at “The World’s Most Famous Arena.”

Linares vs. Lomachenko headlines an evening of world-class action, as welterweight contender Carlos Adames will take on savvy veteran Alejandro Barrera in the 10-round co-feature.

Appearing on the undercard will be Irish sensation Michael Conlan in an eight-round featherweight bout against once-beaten Ibon Larrinaga, 2016 U.S. Olympian Mikaela Mayer in a six-round lightweight contest against Baby Nansen, and Brooklyn native Teofimo Lopez against Vitor Freitas in an eight-round lightweight bout.

This is what the fighters had to say.


Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Jorge Linares

“I am hungry to win and to continue with my reign as world champion. This is a high-level fight and a very important one for my career because I am going to prove that Lomachenko is not an invincible fighter. We will see what he is really made of when he faces me this Saturday. I believe in myself and I know that I will come out with the victory. I am here to win. I did not come here to quit.”


(Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank)

Vasiliy Lomachenko

“I want to put my name in the history of boxing, and this is one of the steps I have to take, to fight in different weight classes, different titles. That’s what will put my name in the history of boxing.”

“I don’t know what Linares will bring. After the fight, I can compare him with Rigondeaux.”

“I already proved where I am, and I plan on being at the top of the sport for a very long time. I do not plan on slowing down.”

“Linares is one of the best fighters in his weight class. I don’t think it’s going to be easy work.”

Carlos Adames

“This Saturday, the fans will all talk about ‘Caballo Bronco’. This will be the first step towards a world championship opportunity and also the first step on my way to becoming the new face of boxing in the Dominican Republic. I have the talent, the mentality and the dedication to represent my country with dignity. That’s why I’m going to give my best and leave everything in the ring to give the fans a good show”

Mikaela Mayer

“I love that Top Rank is putting me on big cards and exposing women’s boxing a bigger audience. There’s definitely an increased interest in women’s boxing, and I am proud to be part of that.”

“Do I want a knockout? Of course. I want the fans to see that women can be in exciting fights and score knockouts.”

“If Nansen wants to come at me, I’m going to be ready for it. I’m ready for anything.”

Michael Conlan

“Madison Square Garden is my home away from home, and I can’t wait to put on a great show for the New York fans. This is going to be a great night of boxing.”

Teofimo Lopez

“This is my third time fighting at Madison Square Garden, and we know what happened last time I fought here. I knocked out the guy {Ronald Rivas} with one shot. One left hook, and he was out.”

“I believe in my God-given talent. Shout out to New York City. I’m from Brooklyn, and I look forward to showing up and feeling the love from my hometown fans.”

“Big things are coming. I love big cards like this. The more people I see out there, the more pumped up I get. Look out for the knockout because it’s coming.

###

Linares vs. Lomachenko and Adames vs. Barrera will be televised live and exclusively at 8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN and ESPN Deportes, and undercard bouts will stream live on ESPN+, available through the ESPN App, beginning at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Golden Boy Promotions, Teiken Promotions, and Madison Square Garden, tickets for the Linares vs. Lomachenko world championship card are ON SALE NOW. Priced at $506, $406, $306, $206, $106, and $56, including facility fees, tickets can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008), and online at MSG.com.

Use the hashtag #LinaresLoma to join the conversation on social media.

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Lomachenko Eager to Prove That Skills Will be the Difference Against Linares


By: Bryant Romero

Vasiliy ‘Hi Tech’ Lomachenko will be heading into unfamiliar territory as a professional prize fighter as he will head 5 pounds north to the lightweight division and challenge the most established champion at 135 pounds in Jorge Linares (44-3, 27 KOs) on May 12 at Madison Square Garden in New York. Lomachenko (10-1, 8 KOs) will be challenging Linares for his WBA and Ring Magazine lightweight titles in just his first fight in the division. Linares is on an unbeaten 12 fight winning streak and is eager to prove that not only is he the bigger stronger man, but has the skills to match the talented Ukrainian. Lomachenko doesn’t seem fazed whatsoever at the size his opponent will bring come fight night and is confident that size won’t be a factor at all in this intriguing lightweight bout.

“For me, it’s a big challenge because before this fight, I fought against guys who were the same size or a little bit smaller than me,” Lomachenko said.

“Now, I want to feel the way Rigondeaux felt when he fought me. He was smaller than I at that point. I am going to be smaller than my opponents now. I want to show people it’s not a big problem, that five pounds is not too big of a difference.

“I wanted to go up to the next weight category, 135 pounds, and fight only champions. Jorge Linares was available for this moment. That’s why I wanted a fight with him.

“I was asked if I wanted to fight Linares. It took me less than two seconds to accept the challenge,” Lomachenko told the boxing media.

It’s the most important and biggest fight of both fighters careers and Lomachenko recognizes the history in not only fighting in New York but to get the chance to headline the big room at Madison Square Garden where boxing legends have been made.

“It’s important for me because I made my name in the history of boxing. Moving forward, I only want to fight in big arenas. I love New York. I love Madison Square Garden. I feel very comfortable there. The boxing fans are very knowledgeable. It’s a very famous arena. Fighting there is a big honor for me,” he said.

Bob Arum of Top Rank who promotes Lomachenko expects a capacity crowd of over 16,000 in attendance for this fight, which shows that the drawing power of the talented Ukrainian is significantly rising.

As for the two combatants themselves, there has been no shortage of verbal jabs being thrown at each in the lead up to this bout. But Lomachenko hopes that after the fight that Linares will show up at the post fight press conference.

“I like it. Before the fight, all boxers talk trash, but after the fight, nobody comes to the press conference. After this fight, I want to see Jorge Linares at the press conference, and I want to hear what he has to say,” Lomachenko said.

Bryant Romero can be reached on Twitter @BoxingTruth88

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Lomachenko-Linares Set For May 12th In New York


In what Top Rank Promotions is calling “a battle of two of the world’s pound-for-pound best,” Vasyl Lomachenko (10-1) will move up to attempt to gain a title in his third weight division by facing WBA lightweight champ Jorge Linares (44-3). The bout, which will go down at New York’s Madison Square Garden, will be aired live on ESPN and ESPN Deportes on May12th. The card will also be aired live via the ESPN app.

The official announcement of Lomachenko-Linares represents a cross promotional success story. “This demonstrates that promoters and networks, when they work together for the good of everyone, can accomplish so very much,” says promoter Bob Arum. Linares is part of Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy stable. Lomachenko, on the other hand, is represented by Arum’s Top Rank Promotions.

“Jorge has established himself as the world’s best lightweight by taking on any and all comers over his storied career,” De La Hoya claims, “but a win on May 12 would put him on an entirely different level.” Lomachenko was an iconic Olympian who some feel is already the pound for pound best professional boxer in the world.

“We fully understand that Lomachenko is universally seen as the best fighter on the planet,” De La Hoya concedes, “but he’s never faced anyone with the size and skill of Jorge, and I am confident that he will retain his WBA and Ring Magazine world championships. As this fight makes clear, I’m 100 percent committed to giving fans the fights they want to see and will work with anyone to accomplish that goal.”

Linares himself appears quite confident heading into the matchup. “Not only will I demonstrate why I’m the best lightweight in the world,” he claims, “but also that I’m one of the best pound-for-pound fighters in the world. I have the speed, skill and power to win this battle. This May 12, Vasiliy Lomachenko will bow down to ‘King’ Jorge.”

Such a feat may be a tall order. Lomachenko now has a history for himself of making top level opponents quit on their stools, an unlikely feat which has earned him the nickname “No Mas-Chenko,” a nod to the famous 1980 Ray Leonard-Roberto Duran rematch, a bout which saw Duran inexplicably quit in the 8th round.

“We are very excited about the fight,” says Lomachenko. “It should be a great one. Fans from around the world have been waiting for Jorge and me to fight.” The 30 year old also claims he’s happy about the fight’s location. “I am looking forward to May 12 in New York to make my debut in the big arena at Madison Square Garden,” he claims.

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Lomachenko To Face Linares On May 12th In New York


By: Sean Crose

It wasn’t an easy fight to make, but Vasyl Lomachenko will be facing Jorge Linares for Linares’ WBA world lightweight title this coming spring. The 10-1 Lomachenko, considered by some to be the best pound for pound fighter in the world, is currently the WBO world super featherweight titlist. He’ll be moving up a division to battle the 44-3 Linares, who has held his own title since he bested Anthony Crolla in 2016. Should he win Linares’ belt, Lomachenko will have earned titles in three divisions in a career that spans only a dozen fights. The match will go down May 12th at Madison Square Garden in New York.

What makes this pairing unique, aside from the fact that it involves two strong talents, is that it brings together two powerhouse promotional entities in an era where political warfare rages throughout the sport of boxing. The fact that Linares is promoted by Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions while Lomachenko is promoted by Bob Arum’s Top Rank Promotions means that both men are in (sometimes) opposing camps. To further complicate matters, De La Hoya and Arum have a relationship that has its own history of ups and downs.

In short, this bout was never a guaranteed thing. And, in fact, it looked for a while as if the match might not be happening at all, as negotiations appeared to have hit rough seas. Things seem to have been finally worked out, though, when ESPN, which showcases Top Rank fights, agreed to push back it’s slated broadcast for the evening of May 12th so that Lomachenko-Linares wouldn’t compete with HBOs replay of the Canelo Alvarez-Gennady Golovkin II broadcast later that same evening (Canelo-Golovkin II will be aired live on pay per view on May 5th and is – at least in part – a Golden Boy Promotion). Another possible factor in the deal being made was that Linares was reportedly offered a huge some of money (the exact amount was not available at the time this article was being penned) to face the feared Ukrainian Lomachenko.

With the pieces now being in place and the names now officially being signed on the contracts, the fight world can focus on what will surely be a fascinating bout. To say Lomachenko has been dominant in recent performances would be an understatement, as his past several opponents have literally quit on their stools. However, Linares is a skillful vet who hasn’t lost a bout since 2012. What’s more, he’s won his last 13 fights. To make things even more intriguing, there’s no guarantee the impressive Lomachenko will remain as forceful in the ring as he has been, since he’s now going to be moving up in weight yet again. The lightweight division is particularly hot right now, with names like Mikey Garcia (who fought and won last Saturday) and Robert Easter dotting the landscape. And news of Lomachenko-Linares stands to make matters all the more intriguing in the near future.

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HBO Boxing After Dark Results:Matthysse KOs Kiram; Linares Prevails


By: Sean Crose

HBOs Boxing After Dark returned Saturday night with a double header from LA’s Forum. Things started off with Jorge Linares (43-3) defending his WBA lightweight crown against (31-1-2) Mercito Gesta. The first round was tight, but Gesta closed the chapter landing some well aimed, sharp shots. The second was also close, but Gesta landed hard in spots with crisp punching. By early in the third, it looked as if Linares’ timing was a bit off. Still, it was in the third when Linares himself started landing effectively. There was nothing particularly telling about the fourth, though Linares didn’t appear particularly in his rhythm.


Photo Credit: HBO Boxing Twitter Account

Things picked up at the end of the fifth, though Linares had appeared to have developed an edge in the bout. The sixth was, like the rest of the bout up until that point, close. Yet Linares looked to be developing a workmanlike points lead. By the seventh, Linares was tossing off bursts of punches that were holding off Gesta. Gesta, however, was game and was having his moments. By the eighth, it was clear that the fight had entered a form of cruise control, with Linares in almost something of a holding pattern.

The ninth and tenth were essentially showcases for Linares’ greater strength. Gesta simply wasn’t strong enough to hurt the man, nor skilled enough to dazzle him. Linares’ was landing hard, no doubt, but he either didn’t have the power or desire to put a bow on things. The eleventh wasn’t all that different from the previous rounds. This had much to do with Linares’ consistency, which was effective, if not necessarily thrilling. Linares made sure Gesta wouldn’t shock the world in the 12th, assuring himself a unanimous decision win.

In the main event, Lucas Matthysse (38-4) faced off against the obscure, yet undefeated, Tewa Kiram (38-0) for the WBA welterweight title. The first round was a feeling out process, as Kiram was tossing a sharp jab as Matthysse tried to work his way inside. Kiram kept firing the jab in the second, as Matthysse kept moving forward. By the fourth, the fight took on the look of Dempsey-Tunney, with the well known veteran fighter searching for former glory while the taller, more defensive minded man, hit and moved effectively.

The crowd started to boo in the fifth, but it was hard to fault Kiram for engaging in such a smart fight. Kiram was making sure he was winning rounds while Matthysse wasn’t able – for whatever reason – to rise to the occasion. After the 6th, HBOs team indicated that Kiram had been sniffing from a jar that was taken from his corner and was then given to the California Athletic Commission in order for the authorities to ascertain what was inside. The commentary team spoke of the tedious nature of the bout in the 7th.

In the 8th, however, Matthysse finally found his mark and dropped Kiram to the mat. Kiram got up and fought gamely….only for Matthysse to send him down again – and out. Just like that, the fight was over.

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HBO Boxing After Dark Preview: Matthysse vs. Kiram, Linares vs. Gesta


By: William Holmes

On Saturday night HBO’s Boxing After Dark kicks off the 2018 year for HBO with two world title fights on their network.

Lucas Matthysse will be facing off against Tewa Kiram for the vacant WBA “Regular” Welterweight title and Jorge Linares will face Mercito Gesta for Linares WBA Lightweight Title.


Photo Credit: Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

This card will take place live at the Forum in Inglewood, California. The following is a preview of both world title bouts.

Jorge Linares (43-3) vs. Mercito Gesta (31-1-2); WBA Lightweight Title

The opening bout of the night will be between the very talented Jorge Linares and Mercito Gesta.

Linares hit a rough patch in his career in late 2011/early 2012 when he suffered back to back TKO defeats, but has one every fight since then and will be making his sixth defense of his WBA Lightweight Title.

Linares, at thirty two years old, is two years older than Gesta. He will also have a one inch height advantage and a one inch reach advantage.

Linares lives in Tokyo and had a successful amateur background in Venezuela before turning pro. Gesta was born in the Philippines and currently lives in San Diego. He does not have the national amateur accolades of Linares.

Linares has also been slightly more active than Gesta. Gesta fought twice in 2017 and did not fight in 2016. Linares fought twice in 2017 and once in 2016.

Linares’ biggest question mark is his chin. He has three losses by knockout and they were to Juan Carlos Salgado, Antonion DeMarco, and Sergio Thompson. He usually starts his fights off strong but fades towards the end.

He has defeated the likes of Luke Campbell, Rocky Juarez, Anthony Crolla, Ivan Cano, Kevin Mitchell, and Nihito Arakawa.

Gesta does not have the professional resume of Linares. His lone loss was the Miguel Vazquez in his only title shot. He has defeated the likes of Gilberto Gonzalez, Miguel Mendoza, and Ty Barnett.

Linares has good power in his hands and has stopped twenty seven of his opponents. Gesta only have seventeen stoppage victories to his credit.

If Gesta was known for his power he would be a live dog in this fight. However, Gesta is not known for his power and was defeated quite easily when he last faced an opponent on the level of Jorge Linares.

This will be the first fight for Linares on HBO in a long time, and it’s a fight that tailor made for him to look sensational in.

Lucas Matthysse (38-4) vs. Tew Kiram (38-0); WBA “Regular” Welterweight Title

The main event of the evening is between Lucas Matthysse and the relatively unknown Tew Kiram.

Matthysse is from Argentina and is in the middle of a fourteen year career. Kiram is twenty five years old and ten years younger than Matthysse. Kiram turned professional at the age of fifteen.

Matthysse had a successful amateur career and is a former Argentine National Champion and competed in several notable international tournaments. Kiram turned pro before most Americans can drive a car, but has never tasted defeat.

Matthysse has incredible power in his hands and has stopped thirty five of his opponents and has only been stopped once. Kiram has twenty eight stoppage victories and won four of his past five fights by KO or TKO.

Matthysse has not been very active and only fought once in 2017 and zero times in 2016. Kiram fought twice in 2017 and four times in 2016. However, every single fight of Kiram has taken place in Thailand.

Matthysse has defeated the likes of Emmanuel Taylor, Ruslan Provodnikov, Roberto Ortiz, John Molina Jr., Lamont Peterson, Mike Dallas Jr., Ajose Olusegun, and Humberto Soto. His losses were to Zab Judah, Devon Alexander, Danny Garcia, and Viktor Postol.

Kiram has no notable victories on his resume.

It’s hard to pick against Matthysse in this fight when so little is known about Kiram. Matthysse’s inactivity is of concern, but he’s facing an opponent who has never faced someone on his level.

Thai boxers can be surprising and are known for having incredible hearts. Kiram will need to display incredible heart and surprising talent to pull of the monumental upset.

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Campbell Kept Father’s Death A Secret In Leadup To Linares Fight


By: Sean Crose

“I probably cried once a day. I had to try and shut feelings off.” So lightweight contender Luke Campbell told the BBC after his WBA title loss on Saturday night to Jorge Linares at the Forum in Inglewood, California. “After the fight” the Englishman added, “I had a good cry.” The source of Campbell’s pain was the passing of his father, Bernard, who died of cancer just two short weeks before the Linares fight. Campbell kept the news of Bernard’s passing a secret, so as not to give Linares the impression he wasn’t emotionally ready to present a legitimate challenge.


Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

“I didn’t want Linares’ camp thinking it was a weakness,” the 17-2 fighter claimed. “I didn’t want them thinking I was hurt.” Campbell was in training camp in the United States when Bernard passed in the British city of Hull. The funeral for the elder Campbell will be held this coming Thursday. Although soldiering on in the midst of a parent’s death was difficult for Campbell to do, the East Yorkshire native felt it was what Bernard would have wanted of him. Indeed, Campbell made it clear that he feels his father would be pleased, even though he lost a nearly controversial decision to Linares on Saturday night.

Campbell, a former Olympic medalist, gave the respected Linares a true run for his money this past weekend. Although clearly the underdog, the taller southpaw got up from a knockdown and proved able to frustrate Linares with effective punching throughout the fight. Campbell wasn’t able to take away Linares’ WBA title, but he certainly earned the respect of the live HBO audience – an impressive takeaway for any fighter. “I think I shut a lot of mouths,” Campbell told the BBC, “and I thought I actually won the fight.”

Linares admitted that the leadup to the bout wasn’t easy for him, with many not giving him much of a chance to beat Linares. Enduring the naysayers while losing his father on the eve of the biggest match of his career proved to be quite the challenge. Campbell, however, rose to the occasion, as he has been known to do since his amateur days. The fighter once told England’s Mirror that boxing saved him from his own less than promising youth. “Boxing teaches you discipline,” he said, “and without that it was only a matter of time before I got myself into trouble with the police.”

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HBO Boxing Results: Linares Decisions Campbell, Jacobs Announces HBO Deal


By: Sean Crose

Saturday’s live HBO broadcast from the Forum in Inglewood, California featured a twelve round lightweight championship affair between WBA titlist Jorge Linares (42-3) and England’s Luke Campbell (17-1). Linares, the skilled champion with titles in multiple divisions on his resume, was the clear favorite. Former Olympic medalist Campbell, however, didn’t come all the way from England to lose. He wanted Linares’ lightweight title – and entered the ring confident he would get it.


Photo Credit: Tom Hogan- Hogan Photos/HBO Boxing

Antonio Orozco was supposed to put his 26-0 record against 35-1-2 Roberto Ortiz in a 10 round super lightweight match before the main event. Unfortunately, however, that bout was called off, as Orozco didn’t show up for the weigh in on Friday (he was reportedly over five pounds over weight).

Before the action started, however, middleweight Daniel Jacobs appeared before HBO cameras at the Forum to announce that: “I’m with the family. I’m with HBO now.” This was indeed major news, as many of biggest, if not most of the biggest, middleweights in the world are now HBO fighters. “You guys are going to see me on a constant basis from this point forward,” said Jacobs. It was a pointed comment, considering the fact that Jacobs has been less than active since his extremely close bout with Gennady Golovkin last winter.

With the news of the night out of the way, it was time for the WBA lightweight title bout. Campbell’s height advantage was telling right from the opening bell, as the Yorkshire native started flicking out his southpaw jab. Linares, however, was cool and collected. Linares started asserting himself in the second – and took his man down with under a minute to go in the round. Campbell beat the count, but was bleeding. Linares, still patient, started working the Englishman’s body. The third round didn’t have the excitement of its predecessor, but Campbell proved himself back in the fight. The fourth was competitive, and it was clear Linares wasn’t simply going to roll over his man.

The middle rounds were shooting matches. Linares came forward effectively in the fifth, but Campbell landed effectively, as well. Campbell continued to land well in the sixth…but were his punches keeping Linares off his gameplan? The seventh saw both men trading off, but doing so with skill and expertise. The bout was indeed close, though Linares’ heavier hands might have been making the difference in his favor.

The eighth was quite close. The ninth saw Campbell in the center of the ring while Linares looked for openings. In the tenth, however, Linares began to turn on the heat. The bout was competitive enough, however, for it to at least seem like the final two rounds might find the winner. Campbell engaged in a defensive strategy throughout the eleventh. Both men proved aggressive in the twelfth, though Linares may have edged it.

Ultimately, the judges ruled for Linares, via split decision.

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Linares-Campbell Ready To Highlight HBOs Saturday Card


by: Sean Crose

Boxing’s extraordinary 2017 thunders on this weekend with a solid HBO card, broadcast live from the Forum in Inglewood, California at 10 PM -Eastern Standard Time – on Saturday night. The card, which will also be aired live on HBO Latino, features a twelve round lightweight championship affair between WBA titlist Jorge Linares (42-3) and England’s Luke Campbell (17-1). Also on the agenda is undefeated Antonio Orozco pitting his 26-0 record against 35-1-2 Roberto Ortiz in a super lightweight 10 rounder. Orozco is being pushed as the one to watch in this fight, and with good reason. Still, it’s worth noting that Orozco’s lone loss came at the gloves of Lucas Matthysse back in 2014.


Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions

As for Linares, he’s certainly an interesting addition to contemporary boxing. Originally from Venezuela, the man now resides in Tokyo. He’s also held belts in numerous divisions, having previously been the owner of straps at both featherweight and super featherweight. Linares’ last two victories were against Anthony Crolla in England. Both fights went down in Crolla’s home town of Manchester, making each of Linare’s unanimous decision victories particularly impressive. Needless to say, the man has won his last eleven matches in a row.

His opponent, Campbell, is a 2012 Olympic Gold Medalist with a single defeat on his resume (to Yvan Mendy back in 2015). Since that line loss, the Yorkshire native has gone on to win five in a row. Saturday’s bout will not only be Campbell’s first fight in the United States, it will be the man’s first bout outside his native England. It will also be his first crack at a world title. Campbell, however, is exuding confidence in the leadup to this weekend, although he frankly is not expected to win. “This is why I am in boxing,” he says, “for the challenges.” Perhaps not surprisingly, heavyweight kingpin Anthony Joshua has thrown his support behind Campbell, his fellow British Olympian.

Although this clearly isn’t the biggest fight of the year, it’s certainly a solid affair and big things might perhaps be in line for the winner. Mikey Garcia has emerged as the big fish at lightweight. As the WBC lightweight champion, the California native can boast of an undefeated record and of recently having bested Adrien Broner in a high profile bout last July in New York. A unification match with the popular Garcia might prove to be both lucrative and popular for the winner of Saturday’s battle.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Kovalev, Shabranskyy, Carto, AIBA, Linares, and more…


Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of September 5th to September 12th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

Sergey Kovalev to Face Vyacheslav Shabranskyy on November 25th

Former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-2-1, 26 KOs) returns to the ring Saturday, November 25 at The Theater Madison Square Garden to take on hard-hitting contender Vyacheslav “Lion-Heart Chingonskyy” Shabranskyy (19-1, 16 KOs) in a 10-round light heavyweight showdown.

Kovalev vs. Shabranskyy will be promoted by Main Events and Krusher Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions, and televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Tickets for this exciting event will go on sale soon.

The Krusher, 34, from Chelyabinsk, Russia, rose to the top of the pound-for-pound rankings as he quickly tore through the light heavyweight division, stopping 26 of his 33 opponents. He won the WBO Light Heavyweight Title from Nathan Cleverly in 2013 when he stopped the then-unbeaten champion in Cleverly’s backyard. After three straight title defenses, all knockouts, Kovalev dominated future Hall-of-Famer Bernard “The Alien” Hopkins in a unanimous decision shutout to add the WBA and IBF belts to his collection. He continued his run as the unified light heavyweight champion for two more years before meeting undefeated champion and Olympic gold medalist Andre “SOG” Ward in Las Vegas and on HBO pay-per-view. Kovalev dropped two controversial and hard-fought losses to the current pound-for-pound king.

Now, Sergey Kovalev is ready to write the next chapter of his career. Before returning to the United States from a summer in Russia, he spent time at a monastery in Greece to clear his head and prepare mentally and spiritually for his climb back to the top of his division. Kovalev said, “I learned a lot from my fights with Andre Ward. When you don’t win and when you suffer adversity, it makes you stronger.

It also shows you who your real friends are. I feel like I cleaned out my life and now I’m ready to start fresh. I’m very excited to get back in the ring, and fight at Madison Square Garden for the first time, and I’m focused on the future. I’m not looking back.”

Shabranskyy, 30 of Zhytomyr, Ukraine, and fighting out of Los Angeles, California has quickly made a name for himself in the light heavyweight division. “Slava” made his professional debut in 2012 with 17 straight victories and 14 knockouts. His only career blemish is a hard-fought TKO loss to Sullivan Barrera, the Cuban sensation who is currently ranked #3 by the WBC and #2 by the WBA at light heavyweight. Since his loss to Barrera, Shabranskyy has two straight wins both coming by way of knockout including his most recent win over Todd Unthank May where he secured the WBC USNBC Light Heavyweight Title. This is Shabranskyy’s opportunity to shoot to the top of his division if he can pull off an upset of the former unified champion.

“I’ve been waiting for this fight a long time. I will take this chance to show everyone my abilities and qualities in the ring,” Shabranskyy said. “My coach, Manny Robles and I have been working on movement and defense, which together with my natural power will be more than enough to defeat a great fighter such as Kovalev. I’m proud to represent USA and Ukraine at this fight.”

Main Events CEO Kathy Duva said, “The Theater at Madison Square Garden is really a perfect place for Sergey to start the next chapter of his career. He needs to go out and remind people why they love the Krusher. Sergey is an exciting fighter who is a pleasure to watch in the ring and that’s what everyone is going to see on November 25th.”

“Vyacheslav Shabranskyy is back, and ready to prove he will do everything to climb to the top, including facing a top-level fighter such a Kovalev.” said Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions Oscar De La Hoya. “Shabranskyy is stronger and smarter inside the ring, and will show off his mastered talent when he faces Sergey. We are excited to partner with Kathy Duva and the Main Events team yet again for an amazing show that will no doubt bring the action.”

About Kovalev-Shabranskyy: The Saturday, November 25 bout between Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev and Vyacheslav Shabranskyy is a 10-round light heavyweight match-up at the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The event is promoted by Main Events and Krusher Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions and will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

World Boxing Super Series to Feature Murat Gassiev vs. Krzysztof Wlodarczyk

World Boxing Super Series action comes to the east coast as the cruiserweight quarter-final showdown between IBF champion Murat “Iron” Gassiev (24-0, 17 KOs) and former world champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk (53-3-1, 37 KOs) is set for Saturday, October 21 at Prudential Center in Newark, N.J.

Promoted by Ringstar Sports in association with World Boxing Super Series, tickets for the live event are on sale now and are available at Ticketmaster.com. Tickets will also be available to purchase at the Prudential Center box office beginning Monday, September 11 at 11 a.m.

“It’s a great pleasure to promote this exciting World Boxing Super Series matchup,” said Richard Schaefer, Chairman and CEO of Ringstar Sports. “Murat Gassiev is clearly one of the top cruiserweights in the world but he will have a great obstacle against the battle-tested former champion Krzysztof Wlodarczyk, who will have a big boost from the raucous Polish fans in New Jersey. Prudential Center is the perfect venue for this event and I know that the fans will enjoy this matchup as both men vie for the Muhammad Ali Trophy.”

“It’s so exciting that the Ali Trophy is coming to a fighting place like New Jersey,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer. “Hold tight and enjoy the ride, October 21 is going to be a unique experience, think ‘Game of Thrones’ meets boxing. Can’t wait!”

A full slate of undercard bout will be announced soon.

“I promise that I’m going to come to the ring to win and do everything possible to get this victory,” said Gassiev. “I want to take advantage of this opportunity to fight the best boxers in my weight class.”

“I have a very serious opponent in Krzysztof Wlodarczyk who is a two-time world champion and his resume speaks for itself. He has fought the best and I’m looking forward to a very hard fight.”

“It is a great honor for me to fight in the World Boxing Super Series for the Muhammad Ali Trophy,” said Wlodarczyk. “I trained for two weeks in the Polish mountains and now I am back in Warsaw putting in the work for October 21.”

“I am very happy to have the opportunity to fight a champion like Murat Gassiev. He is a young, strong champion like I was a few years ago but I am ready to show that I am still the best in the division.”

One of the hardest punchers in the sport, Gassiev trains with Abel Sanchez in Big Bear, California and hails from Vladikavkaz, Russia. The 23-year-old made his U.S. debut in 2015 and delivered four straight knockout victories, including a “Knockout of the Year” contender when he flattened Jordan Schimmel in the first round in May 2016. Gassiev then challenged Denis Lebedev in Russia last December and was able to drop the champion on his way to winning the IBF title.

Fighting out of Piaseczno, Poland, Wlodarczyk first became a world champion when he defeated Steve Cunningham in 2006 to capture the IBF crown. After fighting to a draw against WBC Champion Giacobbe Fragomeni in 2009, Wlodarczyk stopped Fragomeni in their 2010 rematch to become a champion again. He would go on to defend the title six times and enters his October 21 matchup on a four fight winning streak.

California’s Most Exciting Prospects and Contenders to be Part of Linares-Campbell Undercard

California’s most exciting prospects and contenders will showcase their talent on the explosive non-televised undercard of the lightweight showdown between Jorge “El Niño de Oro” Linares (42-3, 27 KOs) and Luke Campbell (17-1, 14 KOs) for the WBA, WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine Lightweight World Championship on Saturday, Sept. 23 at the “Fabulous” Forum in Inglewood, Calif. The Linares vs. Campbell non-televised undercard action will be live streamed on RingTV.com beginning at 3:00 p.m. PT/ 6:00 p.m. ET.

As previously announced, super lightweight contender Antonio “Relentless” Orozco (26-0, 17 KOs) of San Diego, Calif. will make the first defense of his WBC USNBC Super Lightweight title against veteran Roberto “Massa” Ortiz (35-1-2, 26 KOs) in the co-main televised opening bout.

Topping the non-televised portion of the card, Filipino lightweight sensation Romero Duno (14-1, 13 KOs) will take on Juan Sanchez (29-13, 14 KOs) of Tabasco, Mexico in an eight-round lightweight fight. Duno, a member of the Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif. was last seen in the U.S. blasting Christian “Chimpa” Gonzalez in only two rounds in a knockout upset on the March 10 edition of LA FIGHT CLUB. Duno then stopped Jason Tinampay via second-round technical knockout in June in his return to the Philippines. This will be Duno’s first fight on U.S. soil since signing with Golden Boy Promotions earlier this year.

Azat Hovhannisyan (12-2, 10 KOs), a member of the Glendale Fighting Club, will return in a 10-round fight for the vacant WBC Continental Americas Super Bantamweight title against Sergio Frias (19-7-2, 10 KOs) of Guadalajara, Mexico. Hovhannisyan was last seen in the ring headlining the June edition of LA FIGHT CLUB, beating Isao Carranza by unanimous decision.

Contender Abraham “Chamaco” Lopez (22-1-1, 15 KOs)of La Puente, Calif. will fight in an eight-round featherweight bout against Isao Carranza (15-9-1, 9 KOs) of Mexico City. Lopez will return after his first professional loss, which was against Jesus Rojas, who will now fight Claudio Marrero for the interim WBA Featherweight title on Sept. 15 edition of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN.

Manuel “Tino” Avila (22-1, 8 KOs) of Fairfield, Calif. will also return to the ring in an eight-round featherweight bout against Ramiro Robles (14-6-1, 9 KOs) of Queretaro, Mexico. Avila suffered his first defeat against Joseph “Jojo” Diaz, Jr. in May 2017, and will look to return to his climb of the competitive126-pound division with a win on Sept. 23.

Rafael “El Alikin” Gramajo (8-1-1, 2 KOs) of Los Angeles’ Westside Boxing Club will open the night of boxing in his return after more than a year away from the ring in a six-round super bantamweight fight against Pedro Melo (17-15-2, 8 KOs) of Tijuana, Mexico.

AIBA Statement on Interference During 2017 African Continental Championships

Following an incident on 25 June 2017, during the AFBC African Boxing Continental Championships hosted by the Congolese Boxing Federation (Fecoboxe) in Brazzaville, Congo and in light of reports made by AIBA officials present at the tournament, the AIBA Disciplinary Commission has decided to exclude Fecoboxe from organising any AIBA competition for two years and suspend with immediate effect the President of the African Boxing Federation (AFBC), AIBA Vice President and member of the Executive Committee, Mr Kelani Bayor, from all boxing activities, duties and responsibilities for a period of three years.

The Disciplinary Commission found that a hostile and threatening reaction to AIBA officials by spectators after the result of a bout on the last day of the competition was exacerbated by comments from Mr Bayor, who committed serious and unacceptable violations of the AIBA Disciplinary Code. The intimidation felt by AIBA officials as a result of insufficient security planning from Fecoboxe, their inadequate response to the situation and Mr Bayor’s own actions, was fully outlined in the Tournament Supervisor’s written report. The Commission’s decision was also based on written testimony from the majority of those officials present. The Commission’s decision is final and is not subject to appeal.

Christian Carto to Face Alonso Melendez on September 29

Undefeated bantamweight sensation, knockout artist, Christian Carto has been added to an already loaded night of boxing on Friday night, September 29th at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia.

Carto (11-0, 11 KOs) is set to take on Alonso Melendez (14-1, 11 KOs) of Chihuahua, Mexico in a bout scheduled for eight-rounds.

The show is promoted by King’s Promotions.

The 20 year-old continues to step up in competition, and on September 29th, he will be taking on his toughest foe in Melendez.

Carto has kept extremely busy as he fought all eleven of his bouts in a 13-month span, with his latest being a 2nd round stoppage over Phillip Adyaka on August 11th in front of a sold-out crowd at SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia.

He will be making his 1st appearance at the 2300 Arena.

Melendez will making his United States debut. He has won three in a row, and the five-year professional has a win over previously undefeated Edgar Garcia. Alonso is coming off a 7th round stoppage over Jesus Limones on September 9, 2015 in Chihuahua, Mexico.

Carlos Rosario (7-2, 4 KOs) of Pennsuaken, New Jersey and Jerome Conquest (8-2, 1 KO) of Philadelphia will meet in a highly anticipated eight-round lightweight bout.

In a ten-round super middleweight attraction, Junior Castillo (14-1, 10 KOs) of the Dominican Republic takes on Gabriel Pham (9-1, 4 KOs) of Atlantic City.

Mykal Fox (14-0, 4 Kos) of Forestville, MD will take on Marlon Aguas (9-1, 4 KOs) of Quioto Ecuador in a eight-round welterweight bout.

In six-round bouts:

Maynard Allison (9-1, 6 KOs) of Philadelphia meets Juan Rodriguez (7-7-1, 5 Kos) of Haymarket, Virginia in a junior lightweight bout.

David Gonzales (8-2-2, 2 KOs) of Philadelphia battles Darius Ervin (4-1) of Los Angeles in a super lightweight bout.

Erik Spring (9-1-2, 1 KO) of Reading, PA will fight Anthony Prescott (6-7-2, 2 KOs) of Cherry Hill, NJ in a super welterweight fight.

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Showtime Boxing International Results: Jorge Linares Outclasses Anthony Crolla


Showtime Boxing International Results:
By: William Holmes

The last time Anthony Crolla and Jorge Linares faced each other their bout was televised in the United States on A Wealth of Entertainment (AWE) Network.

However, their bout was so good that Showtime decided to televise the rematch, with the winner likely to face Mikey Garcia.

The Manchester Arena in Manchester, England was the host site for tonight’ fight and the arena was rocking for local favorite Anthony Crolla.

IMG_3176
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/Matchroom

Anthony Crolla (31-5-3) and Jorge Linares (41-3) met in the main event of the card for Linares’ WBA Lightweight Title.

The opening round was a close round and the ring was smaller than the last time they fought. Most of the punches of Crolla were blocked by Linares, but neither boxer landed a dominant punch or combination to clearly win the round.

The second round was a clearer round for Linares, who used good lateral movement and a steady jab to keep Crolla at a safe distance. Crolla was able to land a few good jabs, but Linares landed the higher number of punches.

Crolla was warned for a low blow in the third round, but was met with a lead left hook almost immediately afterwards and was tagged with several sharp and crisp combinations form Linares for the rest of the round. The right uppercut by Linares found it’s home several times in the third and fourth round as Linares’ hand speed looked like it was too much for Crolla to handle.

Crolla was able to land a couple of jabs in the fourth round, but nothing of note that had Linares hurt.

Linares confidence appeared to be very high in the fifth and sixth rounds as he was masterfully out boxing Crolla and landing punches and combinations at will. Linares had the Manchester crowd quiet and had the face of Crolla swollen by the end of the sixth.

By the seventh round in their last bout their fight was close to even on the judges’ scorecards. In this fight Linares was clearly ahead.

Linares landed a looping left uppercut that caught Crolla by surprise and sent him to the mat in the seventh round. Crolla was able to get back to his feet and survive the onslaught by Linares, and even landed some good punches of his own as the round came to an end, but the left uppercut had badly hurt him.

Crolla picked up the pressure in the eighth round and tried to get in on the inside with Linares, but he had difficulty doing so and ate several hard right uppercuts. Crolla had his moments in the eighth and ninth rounds, but Linares was quick to land sharp uppercuts and combinations every time Crolla started to build up some momentum.

Crolla’s left eye had a bad cut over it before the start of the tenth round and he continued to press forward in an effort to back up Linares and test his chin. But Linares’ accuracy and hand speed showed no signs of slowing down as he was able to pop shot Crolla and then move out of danger’s way.

Anthony Crolla clearly needed a knockout in the final two rounds to win the title. But in the eleventh round Linares was closer to knocking down Crolla than Crolla knocking down Linares and Crolla’s corner seemed hesitent to send him out for the final round.

The knockout punch that Crolla badly needed never came in the final round.

Jorge Linares wins convincingly on the judges’ scorecards with scores of 118-109, 118-109, and 118-109.

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Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Crolla vs. Jorge Linares


Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Anthony Crolla vs. Jorge Linares
By: William Holmes

In the early evening on Saturday Showtime will broadcast an international boxing event between Jorge Linares and Anthony Crolla for Linares’ WBA Lightweight Title. This is a huge bout in England and will take place at the Manchester Arena in Manchester, England.

Linares and Crolla met in September in Manchester which saw an exciting back and forth affair in which Linares won with scores of 115-114, 115-113, and 117-111 by unanimous decision. It was the first time that Linares went the full twelve rounds in his career.

TWO WORLDS COLLIDE PROMOTION, MANCHESTER ARENA PIC;LAWRENCE LUSTIG WBA WORLD & WBC DIAMOND LIGHTWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP @ 9ST 9LBS ANTHONY CROLLA V JORGE LINARES
Photo Credit: Lawrence Lustig/Matchroom

Mikey Garcia, who will be a guest commentator, has been mandated by the WBC to face the winner of this bout.

The following is a preview of the upcoming WBA Lightweight Title fight.

Jorge Linares (41-3) vs. Anthony Crolla (31-5-3); WBA Lightweight Title

Prior to facing Crolla in September, Linares had never gone twelve rounds in his career. However, that does not mean he has never tasted defeat.

Linares is one year older than Crolla and will have a two inch reach advantage and a slight half an inch height advantage. Both boxers have not been very active in the past two years. Linares fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015 while Crolla fought twice in 2016 and twice in 2015.

Linares had the edge in power as he has stopped twenty seven of his opponents while Crolla has stopped thirteen. Crolla only has one stoppage loss. However, every single defeat of Linares was by stoppage and his chin is highly suspect.

Linares has beaten the likes of Anthony Crolla, Ivan Cano, Kevin Mitchell, Rocky Juarez, and Oscar Larios. He lost to Juan Carlos Salgado, Antonio DeMarco, and Sergio Thompson. Linares’ last loss came over four years ago and he won his four of his past five fights by stoppage.

Even though Linares beat Crolla last time, he understands that Crolla will be better prepared this time. He stated at a recent press conference, “Crolla could come better prepared than last time. Maybe he will throw more punches, maybe he will box more, I don’t really know. The most important thing is I hope he has worked really hard and comes in great condition so there are no excuses and no doubts after the fight.”

Crolla has defeated the likes of Ismael Barroso, Darleys Perez, John Murray, and Gavin Rees. He has lost to Derry Matthews, Gary Sykes (x2), Jorge Linares, and a relatively unknown Youssef Al Hamidi early on in his career.

Crolla has acknowledged he needs to come in with a different game plan in order to win. He stated, “This time I know I need to deal with the flashy combinations better, cut the ring off better and capitalize when he is open for shots.”

Linares has a slight edge in amateur experience as he was a national champion in Venezuela as an amateur.

This should be a good fight like last time, and Crolla will get a much needed boost from the hometown crown spurring him on. But, the result will likely be the same as last time if Crolla doesn’t take risks and try to test the questionable chin of Linares.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: McGregor, Mayweather, Golovkin, Jacobs, Crolla, Linares, and more…


Boxing Insider Notebook: McGregor, Mayweather, Golovkin, Jacobs, Crolla, Linares, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of March 14th to March 21st, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

Jorge Linares Holds a public Open workout at the National Football museum Manchester. Linares is preparing for his fight against Anthony Crolla in a World Lightweight unification rematch on saturday night Live on Sky Sports. 25th March 2017 Picture By Mark Robinson.

Photo Credit: Lawrence Lusting/Matchroom

TMZ Sports Reports that There’s Still Hope Conor Fights Floyd

Dana White Says Conor vs. Floyd is Still a Real Possibility—Telling TMZ Sports, “It doesn’t make a lot of sense for my business, but I would never keep Conor from making that kind of money.”

The UFC boss was out in Beverly Hills when he laid out Conor’s Opportunities…some real big fights. He also said Conor’s waiting for his kid to be born before his fights again.

Read more at http://www.tmz.com/2017/03/15/dana-white-conor-mcgregor-floyd-mayweather-nate-diaz/

HBO to Replay Golovkin vs. Jacobs

HBO Sports presents WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®: GENNADY GOLOVKIN VS. DANIEL JACOBS AND ROMAN “CHOCOLATITO GONZALEZ VS. SRISAKET SOR RUNGVISAI, the exclusive replay of their highly anticipated world championship title fights, SATURDAY, MARCH at 10:00 p.m. (ET/PT). The HBO Sports team, which was ringside at New York’s Madison Square Garden on March 18, called all the action, which will be available in HDTV, closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired and presented in Spanish on HBO Latino.

Other HBO playdates: March 26 (10:30 a.m.) and 28 (11:00 p.m.)

HBO2 playdate: March 26 (3:45 p.m.) and 27 (11:20 p.m.)

The two-fight combo will also be available on HBO NOW, HBO GO® and HBO On Demand®.

Among the sport’s top pound-for-pound performers, Golovkin put his undefeated mark, extraordinary ring record and collection of 160-pound world title belts on the line against hometown hero Daniel Jacobs of Brooklyn in a fight originally carried live on HBO Pay-Per-View®. The co-feature marked a super flyweight title bout between reigning champ and pound-for-pound ace Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez and challenger Srisaket Sor Rungvisai of Thailand.

Mikey Garcia to be Guest Analyst for Linares vs. Crolla

WBC Lightweight World Champion Mikey Garcia will join the SHOWTIME announce team as a guest analyst for the rematch between WBA Lightweight World Champion Jorge Linares and Anthony Crolla on Saturday, March 25 live on SHOWTIME at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT.

Three-division world champion Garcia, (36-0, 30 KOs), will join host Brian Custer and analysts Al Bernstein and Paulie Malignaggi in New York for the SHOWTIME BOXING INTERNATIONAL® presentation of Crolla vs. Linares II, which will air live from Manchester Arena in Manchester, England.

“I’m excited to participate as guest analyst for this rematch,” said Garcia. “These are two of the most competitive boxers in my division. Jorge Linares won the first fight, but Crolla can create a different outcome.

“Linares has good hand speed, timing, reflexes and has power in both hands. Crolla has a good right hand and has shown some solid body work in his recent fights. While Crolla is getting better with each fight, Linares is likely still the better boxer, and should edge him out in a close fight.”

Linares (41-3, 27 KOs) dethroned Crolla (31-5-3, 13 KOs) in a thrilling battle last fall in Manchester to capture the WBA crown. The Sept. 24 match was the first time the three-division titlist Linares, who also holds the WBC Diamond and Ring Magazine lightweight belts, was pushed the 12-round distance in his career.

The WBC has mandated that the winner of Linares-Crolla II must face the hard-hitting Garcia, who knocked out defending champion Dejan Zlaticanin on Jan. 28 on SHOWTIME in just his second fight back following a 30-month layoff.

Linares-Crolla II is the second lightweight world title bout on SHOWTIME in 2017 and an important fight toward potentially unifying the resurgent 135-pound division.

Jorge Linares vs. Anthony Crolla Media Workout Quotes

WBA Lightweight Champion Jorge Linares and former Champion Anthony Crolla partipicated in a public workout at National Football Museum in Manchester, England in preparation for their rematch on Saturday live on Showtime.

Linares defeated Crolla last September to capture the WBA crown. Below are some fight week quotes from Crolla and Linares.

JORGE LINARES:

“Crolla could come better prepared than last time. Maybe he will throw more punches, maybe he will box more, I don’t really know. The most important thing is I hope he has worked really hard and comes in great condition so there are no excuses and no doubts after the fight.

“I can fight even better this time. Before the first fight I had a broken right hand and I hadn’t fought for a while. That’s always a factor, you know? Inactivity. I haven’t had any issues physically or mentally, so the preparation has been great. We did 129 rounds of sparring and everything has gone well up to this point.

“I know he has been quiet in the build-up, I don’t mind if he hasn’t spoken much lately. Let’s just hope it’s a clean fight like the first one.”

“The plans are in the future to get the biggest fights. Obviously the priority right now is to stay focused on Saturday but then I’ll look towards the big fights like against Mikey Garcia.

“I really think coming to train with Ismael Salas made the difference. It’s what helped me really establish myself as a professional fighter and to gain more experience. We learn ‘old school’ as Salas always says. It really has worked well for me in the two years I’ve been with him.”

“I feel really good because this time we had a lot more time to prepare. We did some of the training camp in Japan and then eight weeks in Las Vegas.

“I’m happy to be back here in England again and have another opportunity. I get treated very well, I feel comfortable fighting here. The fans here have a lot of boxing knowledge and they know me well. It’s nice, I feel at home.”

ANTHONY CROLLA:

“It will be another good fight, that’s for sure. Our styles gel really well and I don’t see how it can’t be another good fight, but this time I see a different winner. The key will be adapting. I might need to adapt a number of times in the fight but it is something I have trained for.

“I learned a lot from that fight. Linares has very good speed, very good ring craft and he used his big fight experience for when to take a rest, when to turn it on for the judges.

“This time I know I need to deal with the flashy combinations better, cut the ring off better and capitalize when he is open for shots.

“He has said he will come with another game plan but so will we. Last time I gave it everything, left it all in the ring, but I came up short. The right man won on the night and now I have a second chance at winning back the belt and beating a great fighter.

“I was disappointed I lost – you should never be happy with losing – but I was satisfied I gave everything on the night. When I watched it again there were things in the fight where I thought, ‘why didn’t I do this, why didn’t I do that’, but that is what I did do in the heat of the battle.

“You see people online saying Linares is a level above and that he outclassed me – he obviously didn’t outclass me because two of the judges only had a point in it. The right man won and now I need to show my improvements and make sure the result is different.

“Last time out in Manchester I lost a close fight but with the improvements I have been making in the gym I believe this time it will be a different result.

“The rematch was always top of my list. Linares is top of the pile in the lightweight division and if there was a chance of having a rematch that was always more important to me than any other fight. I want to fight the best and be involved in the big fights and that’s what this is.

“I want the chance to stake my claim as the best lightweight in the world by going out there and beating him.

“I wasn’t going to turn down a rematch to try and ease myself back into title contention. I want these big fights; these big nights in Manchester are what I thrive on.

“I feel better than I have ever felt. Camp has gone really well and there will certainly be no excuses. I have had no distractions outside of camp and everything is good. It is a matter now of showing in the ring tonight the improvements I have been showing in the gym.

“I have had no social life for the past few months and I will walk to the ring knowing that, knowing I have prepared in the best way I possibly can. There will be no ‘what if I had done this’, ‘what if I had done that’ – I have prepared the best I possibly can.”

Josesito Lopez to Battle Saul Corral in Main Event of PBC on FS1

Former world title challenger Josesito “Riverside Rocky” Lopez (34-7, 19 KOs) will face Mexico’s Saul “Navajo” Corral (22-8, 13 KOs) in the 10-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on FS1 and FOX Deportes Sunday, April 9 from The Novo at L.A. Live in downtown Los Angeles.

Televised coverage begins at 9:30 p.m. ET/6:30 p.m. PT and features unbeaten lightweight contender Alejandro “El Charro” Luna (21-0, 15 KOs) battling former title challenger Andrey Klimov (19-3, 9 KOs) in a 10-round bout plus the pro debut of 2016 U.S. Olympian Karlos Balderas in a six-round super featherweight fight.

“I’m excited to get back in the ring as the main event and put on a show for the fans in Los Angeles,” said Lopez. “I’m looking for a world title shot and I believe I have the skills to beat any welterweight out there. This is going to be a great night of fights from start to finish. I’ve been training like never before and I can’t wait to show everybody.”

“I can’t wait to get in the ring and make the most of this opportunity to make a name for myself,” said Corral. “I’ve been training hard to be ready for anything Josesito brings. It’s going to be an exciting fight but I’m prepared to leave everything in the ring and get the victory.”

Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Ringstar Sports, are priced at $30 general admission, $60 balcony reserved, $100 VIP balcony reserved and are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased through AXS.com.

“I’m thrilled to be able to promote a great night of California-based PBC action here in Los Angeles headlined by the return of a local fan favorite, Josesito Lopez,” said Richard Schaefer, Chairman and CEO of RIngstar Sports. “Also we have Alejandro Luna, who is in a tough fight with his sights set on a world title and I can’t wait for U.S. Olympian Karlos Balderas to make his pro debut in what will be the start to a great career. This is a night at The Novo that you don’t want to miss.”

Always in action-packed fights and known for his exciting style and ability to triumph against the odds, Lopez is coming off of a dominant decision victory over Todd Manuel in December 2016. Proudly representing Riverside, California, Lopez has fought at the highest level of competition for years including challenges of Andre Berto, Canelo Alvarez and Marcos Maidana plus triumphs over Victor Ortiz, Mike Arnaoutis and Mike Dallas.

Representing Agua Prieta, Sonora, Mexico, Corral is the winner of 10 of his last twelve bouts entering April 9. The 30-year-old has fought professionally since 2006 and most recently went the distance in a 10-round decision loss to U.S. Olympian Sadam Ali. He won a Mexican title in July 2016 with a fifth-round stoppage of Francisco Medel and also challenged former champion Mike Alvarado amongst his 30 career bouts.

At just 25-years old, Luna has already put together an impressive 21 professional wins since turning pro in 2010. Fighting out of Bellflower, California he began his 2016 campaign by stopping veteran Alan Herrera before dominating previously once-beaten Naim Nelson on his way to a 10-round decision in August. He had previously defeated former world champion Cristobal Cruz and veteran Sergio Lopez on the way to amassing his perfect record.

Originally from Russia but now living and training in Beverly Hills, Klimov was unbeaten in his first 16 pro fights as he climbed up the world rankings. After dropping a decision to Terrence Crawford in 2013, he won three straight fights to earn his world title opportunity against Jose Pedraza. Klimov owns victories over John Molina Jr., Gabino Cota and Guillermo Avila.

Fighting out of Santa Maria, California, the 20-year-old Balderas is the son of Mexican parents who immigrated to the United States to give their children a better life. Balderas had an impressive amateur career that included a 2014 Youth National Championship, four National PAL championships and an impressive run in the World Series of Boxing. His amateur career culminated in a trip to the 2016 Olympic Games where he represented the U.S. and defeated fighters from Kazakhstan and Japan before a decision loss in the quarterfinals.

If Tapia Wants a War I’ll Give Him a War, States Jason Quigley

The long awaited debut of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN is nearly here. On Thursday, March 23, Irish middleweight contender Jason “El Animal” Quigley (12-0, 10 KOs) will showcase his skills against the hard-punching Glen “Jersey Boy” Tapia (23-3, 15 KOs) in a 10-round main event battle for the vacant NABF middleweight title. In the co-main event, Coachella’s Randy “El Matador” Caballero (23-0, 14 KOs) will campaign to become a two-division world champion as he combats for the NABF super bantamweight title against Jesus “Estrella” Ruiz (35-7-5, 24 KOs) in a 10-round affair; and making her pro-debut on the national TV broadcast, 2012 Olympic Bronze medalist and highly decorated amateur Marlen Esparza will participate in a four-round flyweight fight against Rachel Sazoff (0-2).

The fighters shared their final thoughts ahead the fights, which will air live from Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, California on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT.
Below is what the fighters had to say:

Jason “El Animal” Quigley, Middleweight Contender:

“I’m delighted to be headlining on ESPN on Thursday; it’s a great honor and opportunity. My camp has been amazing – all the hard work has been put in, and I’m ready. I plan on putting on a great show for my American audience and my friends, family and fans back home in Donegal, Ireland.

“If Tapia wants a war, I’ll give him a war…I’m prepared for anything. Winning this fight brings me one step closer to my dream, winning the NABF title will be fantastic, I still have a long way to go, and am dedicated to making my dream of being a world champion come true.”

Glen “Jersey Boy” Tapia, Former WBO NABO Super Welterweight Champion:

“I’m honestly really excited for this fight. Not only because it’s a televised ESPN fight for the NABF title but because it’s been a tough couple of years for my career. People are looking at this like this a make or break fight for me, and even though most people would hate to be in this position, I look at it as an opportunity to bounce back and show the world who Glen Tapia really is!

“I have a lot of fans that believe in me and have been waiting for my return, but I also have a lot of critics that question if I can do this, and that’s a challenge that I’m more than ready to take. My job is not to listen to the critics; my job is to handle my business in that ring and show them why I belong here.At the end of the day, I can sit here and talk about what I’m going to do to Quigley, but the truth is you guys don’t want to hear that. Actions speak louder than words so I’ll just show you guys on March 23rd.”

Ringside Network to Begin 24/7 Television Network Dedicated to the Sport of Boxing

Ortiz Media Group, Inc. has signed an agreement with RingSide Network to Provide on-air operations, cable representation and distribute its signal through Cable, Satellite, OTT, Set Top Boxes, Smart devices, and other platforms throughout the United States and the world.

RingSide Network is an American specialty sports channel headquartered in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania (USA) with programming devoted exclusively to the sport of boxing. Ortiz Media Group will operate the channel 24 hours per day and 7 days a week with programming featuring up-to-date boxing news, one-on-one interviews, highlights, talk shows featuring sport celebrities, expert boxing analysis, documentaries, pre-fights and post-fight press conferences, live weigh-ins, round table panel discussions, skills instructions, and classic professional fights from 1920’s to the present.

RingSide Network programming will include local, regional, national and international content from today’s and tomorrow’s contenders and champions.

“We are excited to bring RingSide Network from Philadelphia, PA, known as the boxing capital of the world. We will play a pivotal role in bringing world-wide boxing to our cable and satellite homes as well as all platforms available directly to our consumers,” said Mr. Alex Hamer, CEO of Ring Side Network.

RingSide Network plans to cover amateur events include Olympic boxing, Olympic boxing trials, National Golden Globes, National Police Athletic League Championships and U.S. Collegiate Boxing Championships, as well as boxing related movies.

Boxing is gaining popularity in the United States. Statista.com reported that in 2015 the number of people in the United States who watched pro boxing amounted to 20.29 million within a period of 12 months.

“Ortiz Media Group is a leader in operations and cable/satellite distributions and we are very excited to be expanding our relationship with RingSide Network with operations, distribution, branding, and revenue generation,” said Mr. Clark Ortiz, President and CEO of Ortiz Media Group.

The sport of boxing makes a great impact in the U.S. economy. Over 54 million Americans paid gym/fitness membership fees in 2014, and for the second year in a row actual visits to the gyms exceeded 5 billion. In 2014, the annual review of $24,2 billion was also a sharp 7.5% increase of $22.4 billion in 2013.

According to the Bureau of Labors Statistics, fitness and recreation sports centers employed 533,200 in 2014, and jobs are expected to grow 8% by 2024.

In 2010, wholesale sales of boxing equipment amounted to about $106 million in the United States. The Title Boxing Clubs grew from 10 locations to more that 100 between 2011 and 2013 and is part of the fitness industry that has approximately 60 million customers in the United States. According to the Sports and Fitness Industry Association there were over 5.1 million boxing for fitness participants in the US in 2014 and according to Statista that number grew to 6.39 million in 2015. In 2016, 5.9% of respondents who came from a household where the annual income was $200,000 or more stated that they are a fan of boxing.

Ring Side Network’s website is www.ringsidenetwork.tv

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