By: Hans Themistode
Anyone who has ever had dreams, understands that it only it takes an opportunity for everything to fall into place. Those opportunities however, are far and few between.
Super Lightweight prospect Yurik Mamedov is in the midst of a stellar boxing career. Through 12 professional bouts he has won 11 of them. Truth be told, he should be sitting here as an undefeated fighter as his 2017 defeat at the hands of Marcus Beckford was highly disputed. Still, even with that small blimp on his resume, Mamedov has enjoyed a successful career thus far.
Unlike many young prospects, Mamedov has not had the luxury of getting many fights as of late. In the career of a young fighter, it is ordinary to see them grace the ring four, five, even six times during a year.
In 2017, Mamedov made six appearances in the ring and excelled winning five of those aforementioned contest. The following year, however, things began to change. He entered the ring just twice during the year and has since followed that up with just one appearance in 2019.
Things needed to be altered. Mamedov, who was born in Russia but currently resides in Brooklyn, New York, decided to make a change. After spending several years as a free agent, he watched as fight after fight fell by the wayside. Just a few short months ago, Mamedov signed a deal with Uprising promotions in order to get the opportunities he has been longing for.
“I made some big changes,” said Mamedov. “I decided to work with Uprising promotions. I have a five fight deal with them and I believe it was the right move for me to do. I had so many fights that got canceled and I couldn’t just continue to train and not actually fight. Me and my new promoters sat down and discussed my future and I like the vision that he has for me so it has me excited.”
The excitement is easy to understand. Shortly after signing his deal with Uprising promotions, he was given a fight date immediately. Mamedov is also being given a shot at a title as well.
“My upcoming fight will be for the WBA Southern Caribbean title against Eduardo Cordovez. The plan is to win this title and work my way into a ranked position in the WBA. I’m glad to be working with Uprising for my future fights. This is my first time that I’ve ever signed a deal with any promoter but I’m happy that I did.”
Although the WBA Southern Caribbean is a smaller trinket, it is something that can position him down the line to securing major fights. The contest between Mamedov and Corovez will take place in Kingston Jamaica. It isn’t the most ideal place for the 28 year old, but he is grateful for the opportunity nevertheless.
“This will be my first fight outside of the country in my professional career but I’m used to it. I’ve fought in France and Puerto Rico in the amateurs so traveling for a fight isn’t a big deal to me. I’m just glad that I will be fighting on pay per view for the first time in my career and it won’t be expensive either. Anyone that wants to watch my fight can go to TelevisionJamaica.com and pay four dollars to watch a great fight. I want everyone to tune in so they can finally see what I can do.”
For just about anyone else, the thought of fighting in another country can be a burden. But for Mamedov, his fight in Jamaica will be easy compared to the fight that him and his people have been dealing with over the years.
“I am Yezidi myself and since 2012 we have been killed by Isis,” said Mamedov. “Because they want to convert us to Islam to become Muslim, they kidnap the women and turn them into sex slaves.”
With the ordeals that his people have currently gone through, Mamedov will look to use this as motivation going forward. The ultimate goal for Mamedov is to secure a title shot in his natural weight class of the Super Lightweight division.
“All I need is a few more fights and I’ll be ready for a world title shot. Now that I am in my normal weight class I believe I will be even more effective. With just a few more fights under my belt I’ll be ranked with the WBA and I’ll be given a title shot within a couple years. First things first, I have to take care of business in my next fight on November 16th.”
Fueled by the trials and tribulations of his people, coupled with the biggest opportunity of his career, Mamedov can’t afford to let this moment go to waste.
By: Bryant Romero
Super lightweight prospect Yurik “DBSBC” Mamedov has a lot to be motivated for when steps into that ring. Not only does he fight for himself his family, but also the Yezidi people. Yurik also goes by the alias of the ‘fighting pride of the Yezidi.’ The Yezidi are a small population of people mostly based in Iraq and for years they have been terrorized by Turkey and now by Isis. Yurik through his boxing wants to bring more awareness to this ongoing issue that has gone underreported with no solution to the problem in sight.
“I am Yezidi myself and since 2012 we have been killed by Isis,” Yurik explained to me. “Because they want to convert us to Islam to become Muslim, they kidnap the women and turn them into sex slaves.
Photo Credit: Yurik Mamedov’s Facebook
“One of my cousins, we don’t know where she is. She could be dead or a sex slave I don’t know. I know that could be my sister. I feel like I need to be a voice for the Yezidi people.
“Through my boxing I can bring awareness to these people, to my people that need help. One of the reasons I step into the ring is to bring awareness to the Yezidi people, which is a genocide and nobody is doing anything,” Yurik said.
The 27-year-old is a well traveled young man and it took awhile for him and his family to get settled at a place they could call home. Yurik was born in Russia, then lived for awhile in Armenia but the situation there was too rough, which forced Yurik and his family to come to Germany where they waited two years to find out if they would get accepted into the country.
After being rejected into Germany, Yurik and his family stayed in Belgium for six months before finally making their way into France in September of 2001.
It was in France where Yurik and his family finally got settled but life wasn’t easy for Yurik while growing up in France. He was different compared to many that lived there, didn’t speak the language originally, and was picked on a lot, which resulted into many street fights.
“I couldn’t be friends with them, so I got into fights a lot and one day I remember one guy pushing me and I just punched him back and he just grabbed me and gave me a kick in my teeth and I lost two teeth,” Yurik said.
“Which still I have, I never put them back because it’s a reminder for why I started boxing.”
Not long after that, Yurik would run into a man that would be the breakthrough he needed to become a boxer.
“Three or four days after, there was this old man that would say hi to me and I thought maybe he knows the city and I could ask him for advice.
“So I ask him ‘do you know where I can find a boxing gym in the city.’ The answer he gave me was ‘I have my own gym and you can come if you want to.’ And this man who I ask is still my coach to this day.
“Everytime I fight I make sure that I get tickets for him to see the fight and be in my corner,” Yurik said.
That man goes by the name of Malek Ikhenach who would take Yurik to and back from the gym everyday to train. Together they formed a strong bond and Yurik began to have success as an amateur winning many fights.
Yurik’s first coach Malek would set up a two week camp in New York with another coach he knew in New York named Simon Bakinde. Being that Yurik was one of the best amateurs from France, he got the experience to train in America and from there realized he wanted to come back to train and see how his boxing career would play out in America.
“He (Malek) introduced me to Simon, so I talk to Simon and I stayed for two weeks and all we did was train and I love the way the people respect boxing. I asked Simon if I could come here and do this and he said ‘sure we just have to find a way to make it happen.’
“So I went back to France for one year and just work and save my money and I found a way to come to the U.S. as a student. I didn’t want to come illegally because all my life I was illegal from Russia to Armenia and I went through so much and I didn’t want to go back to that,” Yurik said.
At the age of only 19 Yurik decided to leave France to begin a new life in America and initially he didn’t get the support he hoped for when he made his decision. While he was winning fights in the amateurs, Yurik didn’t consider himself to be a special talent and even questions himself sometimes of why left France in the first place.
But he took the risk and eventually his family would have a change of heart with his decision to leave. He would compete in the Golden Gloves in New York after just a year of being in the States and he would reach the finals with his father and former coach in attendance as he lost a close decision in the final.
The well traveled 27-year-old is now (10-1, 3 KOs) as a pro and is slowly but surely climbing the rankings of the super lightweight division.
“My next fight will be in August,” he said. “I’m trying to get a bigger name. I want to get as much fights as I can. I want to be busy that is my number 1 goal.
“I want to do stuff at 140 and then gradually move up to 147 and 154 eventually. I feel very strong, my technique is there. It’s all about the right fights and the right time.
“I feel like next year, once I get 15 fights I’m ready for whatever,” Yurik said.