DAZN Boxing Preview: Rios vs. Soto
By: Michael Kane
Brandon Rios travels to Tijuana to take on local favourite Humberto Soto on Saturday live on DAZN in the U.S and SKY Sports in the UK.
Both are former world champions, Soto a former multi weight champion will be looking to role back the years. The fight is taking place in the junior middleweight division which is some way out from where both fighters had there best days.
Soto (68-9-2, 37 KOs) won an interim featherweight title as well as world super featherweight and lightweight titles, while Rios is a former lightweight champion too.
Soto is on a three fight win streak after losing unanimous decision to Antonio Orozco in 2015. He last fought in August last year beating Edgar Puerta by unanimous decision.
Rios (35-4-1, 26 KOs) has won 4 and lost 4 from his last eight fights. Most recently he defeated Ramon Alvarez by TKO in the 9th in November last year.
The event at the Auditorio Municipal Fausto Gutierrez will be the first show Matchroom have put on on Mexico.
“It feels nice to fight back in Mexico,” said Rios to Matchroom Boxing website. “Especially right now with everything that’s going on, all the politics. Not only that, but it’s good to give the Mexican fans a great show, they get to see me live which is awesome.
“I’m fighting a guy that lives in Tijuana. He’s from Mexico, so I’m pretty sure the crowd’s going to be on his side, 100 per cent, but it feels good to be back out in front of Mexican fans. I’m ready to go and show the world that I’m ready to get back to the top again.
“The main decision for me to come back was when I was watching a fight on TV and j told my wife ‘baby, that can still be me. I can still do that shit. I know I can still do that shit.’ I just had bad camp, bad habits. She told me, ‘I’m going to let you do what you want to do, you’re a grown man but if you come back, you’ve got to promise me to do it right.’ None of the half assed shit with dieting, and all that. So I thought about it for about a day or two, and I had the urge for it.”
Rios has signed a three fight deal with Matchroom, this being the second of that deal and he is looking ahead to being in the mix for a title shot after promising his daughter.
“Nobody was really paying attention to me anymore, and Eddie gave me an opportunity, and I really appreciate that. I’m fighting my second fight with him, and I can’t wait to go again.
“My main target is to get a title shot. I promised my little girl. She does karate. I told her, if you become a black belt you give me that title. When I become a champion again, I give you my belt.
“We made that promise, and I don’t want to break her heart, so that’s why I want to be a champion again before I retire. I keep my word. Every day, I kid you not, she says ‘dad, remember you promised me?’ Every day. I come to the gym today, she’s asking me if I’m bringing back a title. That’s 100 per cent my drive.”
Rios feels with a win over Soto he will be back in title contention soon.
“You know what, it could be soon. It could be my next fight, who knows with Eddie Hearn. For now I’m just concentrating on this guy. I’m ready for whatever falls next.
“Soto is a veteran he’s 38 years old, he knows some tricks, he’s a former three time world champion, so we’ve got to be ready for whatever he brings. That’s why I’m working so hard to correct the mistakes.
“Working with Matchroom Boxing and being on DAZN, they’ve given me fights back to back which is great. I haven’t got that wasted time, rested time, there giving me fights right away. I’m grateful and happy to be a part of the team. I’m ready to get back to the top.
“Its going to be a great fight. You’ve got a three division former champion, Soto comes to fight, very talented and very skillful, he’s a big counter punched. Then you’ve got myself, Bam Bam, who comes to brawl and always gives the fans a good show, but what always makes a perfect fight is a counter and brawler. There’s always going to be punches thrown, always something going to happen.”
Soto said in the press conference “I’m excited to get into the ring once again. I’m really thankful to all my fans, and I’m really happy for the chance to be the main event once again.”
The card, as to be expected is stacked with Mexican fighters. Highlight of which will be the rematch between Jose ‘Gallito’ Quiniro (20-2-3, 9KOs) and Joel Cordoba (7-4-2, 1KO). Both fighters fought in December in an entertaining fight at the same venue that ended in a draw.
Decorated amateur Alexis Espino from Las Vegas makes his professional debut against Diego Pacheco (1-0, 1KO)
2016 former Olympian Joselito Velasquez (7-0, 6KOs), Omar Aguillar (11-0, 10KOs) and Sulem Urbina (8-0, 1KO) will all be looking to continue their unbeaten runs.
Johnson-Monaghan Clash A “Do Or Die” Moment For Both Fighters
By: Sean Crose
Per Matchroom Boxing: “Callum Johnson and Sean Monaghan will clash in a crunch Light-Heavyweight battle at the Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York on Saturday March 9, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.” The 17-1 Johnson, who suffered a KO loss to IBF World Light Heavyweight Champion Artur Beterbiev last October in Chicago, is eager for a chance at redemption. A win against the popular Monaghan on the undercard of the Dmitry Bivol-Joe Smith Jr/ Maurice Hooker-Mikkel Les Pierre double header in Verona would certainly prove good for the Englishman’s career.
“I was gutted in the Beterbiev fight,” Johnson says. “I was gutted because I felt the occasion maybe got to me, but I still had good moments in the fight and I’ve learned a lot from it…I know that if a second shot comes my way, I will be more than ready for it with the experience of Chicago behind me. Sean always puts everything into his fights and he badly needs this win, just like I do, so there should be fireworks.” Johnson, who has earned all four of his previous wins by knockout, is clearly hoping to impress.
Yet the 29-2 Monaghan is looking to redeem himself, as well. As Matchroom puts it: “The New Yorker enters the bout gone the ten round distance with Sullivan Barerra in November, and the 37 year old sees a victory over Johnson as a must-win to keep his World title dreams alive.” Aside from being handed a loss by Barerra last November, Smith has also been defeated by now WBA interim Light Heavyweight champ Marcus Browne via stoppage in 2017. A win against a name fighter might do wonders for the New Yorker’s career at this point, which helps make the bout with Johnson the must win occasion it is for both men.
“I’ve had my eye on Callum since before the Beterbiev fight,” Monaghan claims. “He has a come forward pressure style and our styles should make for a fan friendly fight.” Monaghan also makes it clear that facing an English fighter comes with risks in and of itself. “I know these Brit’s always come in shape,” he says, “so I’m already working very hard. This is a fight I absolutely need to win. No excuses, it’s do or die for me.” The Johnson-Monaghan match is scheduled for ten rounds.
Sor Rungvisai Joins Matchroom and DAZN
By: Sean Crose
“I’m delighted,” says Matchroom Boxing honcho Eddie Hearn, “to welcome Srisaket Sor Rungvisai to the Matchroom Boxing USA team. Srisaket is one of the top pound-for-pound fighters in boxing today and has been a revelation in recent years with great fights and wins over Roman Gonzalez and (Juan Francisco) Estrada and has some huge fights to be made in the division. His next fight will be announced soon, and fans can expect another firecracker live on DAZN and Sky Sports!” Like fighters such as Daniel Jacobs, and Demetrius Andrade, Sor Rungvisai is now connected to Hearn and the DAZN streaming service.
“It’s my great honor to be working with Matchroom Boxing USA and DAZN,” the 47-4-1 WBC super flyweight champion says. “I thank my team and everyone who made this opportunity possible. I am extremely excited for my future fights in the USA with Matchroom Boxing and DAZN, and I promise to bring excitement to all my fans always.” Sor Rungvisai’s deal is said to cover several fights. Since twice besting Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez, who had been considered by many to the best pound for pound fighter on earth, the Thai fighter himself is now considered high in the pound for pound rankings.
According to Matchroom, Sor Rungvisai “moved to 47-4-1 on home turf in Thailand with a wide points win over Iran Diaz, three months after notching an incredible 41st KO triumph by blasting away Young Gil Bae in the opening round, again on home territory.” What’s more, Matchroom claims “The Thai king will return to the ring to defend his strap for the fourth time in his current reign in a fight to be announced soon, and the 32 year old is delighted to have penned a deal with Hearn and the streaming giants.”
Although no announcement has been made in regards to his next fight, Sor Rungvisai is expected to have a rematch with Estrada, who he bested by majority decision last year at the Forum in Inglewood, California. Sor Rungvisai first gained international attention when he bested Gonzalez by controversial decision at Madison Square Garden on the Gennady Golovkin-Daniel Jacobs undercard back in 2017.
He met Gonzalez again later that year at the StubHub Center in Carson, California and knocked the iconic Nicaraguan out in a one sided beatdown that didn’t get past the fourth round. Since that time, Sor Runvisai has gone on to win three in a row.
Tevin Farmer: “You Don’t Want To Get Personal With A Philly Guy”
By: Sean Crose
“Tevin Farmer will defend his IBF World Super-Featherweight title against Jono Carroll at the Liacouras Center in Philadelphia on Friday March 15, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.” The red hot 28-4-1 Farmer will be putting his IBF World Super Featherweight Title on the line when he meets Ireland’s 16-0-1 Carroll on Saint Patrick’s day weekend. “He’s got a World title shot on St Patrick’s weekend,” Farmer says. “He should be thanking me.”
The Philly native says his foe is “trying to get under my skin but it’s impossible to get under my skin. He’s making himself look bad and he’s stepping up to a whole different level with me. I’m A-level and he’s going to pay.” Carroll most certainly seems ready for war. “I’ll do what I want with Tevin,” the Irishman says. “He’s a tiny little child and I’m not afraid of him…when we meet, if he’s respectful of me, I’ll be respectful back as that’s how I’ve been brought up – but if comes talking rubbish then I’ll put him in his place.”
“He says we both come from tough backgrounds, the hood,” Farmer says of the Dublin native. “That boy hasn’t come from any struggle, no hood. I’m going to show him when he comes to Philly, he’s going to eat his words. He’s trying to get his buzz up but there’s certain things that you don’t say. He’s made this personal and you don’t want to get personal with a Philly guy like me.” This will be Carroll’s first shot at a major world title. “He’s never met a man like me in his life,” Carroll says of Farmer. “He came from a rough background yes, but so did I. We’re both from crazy places but we’re in the limelight now, so we have to be grown-up and responsible as we’re going to have cameras around us.”
Farmer may not be crazy about Carroll, but he’s thrilled to be fighting in his hometown. “This is big for me, fighting as a World champion in Philly,” he says. “When does Philly hold big World championship shows? This is big – it’s a boxing town but this is as big a show as there’s been here for a long time.” This will be Farmer’s fourth fight in just over six months – a very high work rate for an established fighter, the kind preferred by Matchroom Boxing honcho Eddie Hearn, a man who, along with promoter Lou DiBella, Farmer has high praise for.
“I have to thank Eddie, Lou and DAZN,” he says, “for making this a reality, because often World champions don’t always get the chance to fight in their home city. It doesn’t happen, but it’s happening for me and that shows the level of respect that Eddie, Lou and I have for each other. It’s going to be a great night.”
Super Bantamweight Titlist TJ Doheny Teams Up With Matchroom Boxing
By: Sean Crose
“I am absolutely ecstatic to be joining the principal team in professional boxing today,” says Ireland’s TJ Doheny, the IBF super bantamweight world champion. Doheny, according to Matchroom Boxing “has signed a promotional deal with Matchroom Boxing USA and will make the first defense of his IBF World Super-Bantamweight title at the Hulu Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York on Friday January 18, live on DAZN in the US and on Sky Sports in the UK.”
“I believe with Matchroom Boxing and my management team at MTK Global I have the perfect blend to help me achieve my ultimate goals in the sport of boxing,” says Doheny. Doheny, who won his belt by besting Ryosuke Iwasa in Japan last summer, boasts an undefeated 20-0 record. His opponent for the 18th has yet to be announced.
“I’m delighted to welcome TJ to the team,” said promoter Eddie Hearn. “TJ is always in great fights and he is coming off a huge win in Japan to capture the title.” Doheny is one of numerous fighters of note in recent memory who have teamed up with Hearn. “He (Doheny) will make the first defense of his title at Madison Square Garden on Jan 18,” the promoter continues, “and if he comes through will attempt to unify the division against WBA champ Danny Roman in the spring. There are some great fights to be made at 122lbs and we expect to see all of them on DAZN.”
Doheny, who now lives in New Zealand, has fought most of his matches in his homeland, though this will be his fourth time fighting in the US. Although not well known to American audiences, Doheny’s a belt holder in a division that includes Guillermo Rigondeaux. Isaac Dogboe, Rey Vargas, and Diego De La Hoya. Fighting, as he will be on the undercard of the Demtrius Andrade-Artur Akavov WBO middleweight title bout, should help expose the man to a wider audience.
This will be Doheny’s first fight in Madison Square Garden. New York, with it’s large Irish population, could present a comfortable audience, as Boston has in two of Doheny’s previous American fights. ““I am really excited to getting the ball rolling with my first defense on January 18 at Madison Square Garden,” he says. “This fight will give me the momentum I need going into (a) really big year.”
HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Jacobs vs. Derevyanchenko, Machado vs. Evans
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night the Hulu Theater in Madison Square Garden in New York City will host an IBF World Middleweight Title fight between Daniel Jacobs and Sergi Derevyanchenko.
The undercard will feature two other world title bouts. The co-main event of the evening will be a WBA Regular Junior Lightweight Title fight between Alberto Machado and Yuandale Evans. The first fight of the telecast will be a rematch between Heather Hardy and Shelly Vincent for the vacant WBO Women’s Featherweight Title.
The fight between Hardy and Vincent was just recently added to the telecast and was originally scheduled to be on the untelevised undercard. Their first fight was a 2016 Ring Magazine Female Fight of the Year, and saw Hardy win by a majority decision.
Even though this writer does not remember their first fight being as close at the judges scored it, it was an action packed fight that should be entertaining for fight fans.
The following is a preview of the co-main event and main event of the evening.
Alberto Machado (20-0) vs. Yuandale Evans (20-1); WBA “Regular” Junior Lightweight Title
Alberto Machado is currently co-promoted by both Golden Boy Promotions as well as Miguel Cotto Promotions. He holds the WBA Regular Junior Lightweight Title and is considered one of Golden Boy’s top prospects.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
He’s in the midst of his athletic prime at 28 years old and is one year younger than Evans. He has 16 stoppage victories on his resume, two more than Evans, and has been more active. Machado has stopped three of his past five opponents. Saturday will be his second fight of 2018, after fighting three times in 2017 and four times in 2016. Evans will be fighting for the first time 2018, fought twice in 2017, and didn’t fight at all in 2016.
Both boxers have been fairly successful as amateurs. Machado was a national champ at the Junior, Junior Olympics, and Cadet Categories. Evans won a bronze medal in the National Golden Gloves Tournament.
Machado has never tasted defeated and has beaten the likes of Rafael Mesnah, Jezreel Corrales, Carlos Morales, and Juan Jose Martinez. Every opponent that Machado has defeated since 2014 had a winning record.
Evans’ lone loss was to Javier Fortuna by TKO way back in 2012. He has notable wins against Luis Rosa and Billel Dib. Two of the past four fighters that Evans has faced had losing records.
Machado should win by a comfortable margin on Saturday, as Evans doesn’t have the experience of Machado and has been fairly inactive in the past few years.
Sergiy Derevyanchenko (12-0) vs. Daniel Jacobs (34-2); IBF Middleweight Title
Daniel Jacobs is one of Eddie Hearn’s top middleweights and he’s looking at potential bouts with either Canelo Alvarez, Demetrius Andrade, or Billy Joe Saunders in the future on the DAZN network.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
But first he has to get past an under the radar Sergiy Derevyanchenko, who is better than most people realize.
Jacobs has 29 stoppage wins on his resume and nearly triple the number of professional fights than Derevyanchenko. Derevyanchenko only has 10 stoppage wins, but Derevyanchenko spent most of his early career fighting under the World Series of Boxing Banner, which don’t technically count as professional fights.
When Derevyanchenko fought for the World Series of Boxing he had over 23 fights and only lost once.
Both boxers had successful amateur careers. Jacobs was a Junior Olympics, Golden Gloves, and US National Champion. Derevyanchenko competed in the 2008 Summer Olympics, the most prestigious amateur event for boxing.
Jacobs two losses were a monumental upset to Dmitry Pirog back in 2010, and a close decision loss to Gennady Golovkin. He has defeated the likes of Maciej Sulecki, Luis Arias, Sergio Mora, Peter Quillin, Caleb Truax, Jarrod Fletcher, and Ishe Smith.
Derevyanchenko has never tasted defeat as a pro, but he did lose a World Series of Boxing match. He has beaten the likes of Dashon Johnson, Tureano Johnson, Sam Soliman, Kemahl Russell, Elvin Ayala, and Vladine Biosse.
The biggest notable difference on Saturday will be size. Daniel Jacobs will have at least a two and a half inch height advantage as well as a five and a half inch reach advantage. He looked even bigger when they faced off with each other. Both guys are still in their athletic prime, with Jacobs being 31 and Derevyanchenko being 32.
Jacobs shouldn’t overlook Derevyanchenko, for his amateur pedigree indicates he will be a tougher opponent than most expect. But Jacobs will be fighting in front of a friendly crowd with big fights on the horizon, this writer has a hard time imagining a scenario where he doesn’t walk out the victor.
DAZN Boxing Results: Andrade Steamrolls Kautondokwa
By: Sean Crose
After a very long undercard…seven hours or so…Michael Buffer stepped up to the center of the ring at Boston’s TD Garden arena to announce the main event of the evening’s DAZN broadcast. Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade entered the ring with a record of 25-0. His goal? To conquer his undefeated challenger, the 17-0 knockout artist known as Walter Kautondokwa.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
Kautondokwa went down in the first, though Andrade also clipped him while his man was down. The second round saw Andrade clearly looking to impress, for he fought aggressively and punched with power. Kautondokwa landed himself, though, proving that he was no pushover.
Andrade was all business in the third, landing effectively and with great speed. He then sent Kautondokwa back on the mat with a thunderous right. Andrade jumped on the corner ropes to celebrate, but the rugged Kautondokwa got up and survived the round.
Andrade sent his man to the mat twice more on the fourth. He was completely wiping Kautondokwa out but the game contender simply wouldn’t quit. Andrade looked as if he wanted to conserve some energy in the 5th though he wrapped the round up with a series of explosive body shots.
Andrade kept an active, dominant pace in the sixth, though there were no knockdowns. The seventh was much the same as the sixth. There was little doubt Andrade was pitching a shutout. By the eighth round, the situation was becoming repetitive. Kautondokwa was acting as target practice for Andrade’s fists.
In the ninth, Kautondokwa spit up blood. And yet he kept fighting. The man’s heart was nothing short of impressive. And still, Andrade kept banging clean shots against his foil in the tenth, and eleventh. Andrade conintued throwing thunder in the twelfth. Kautondokwa stayed on his feet…but it was all he could do.
Andrade walked away with the UD win.
DAZN Boxing Results: Joshua Stops Povetkin, Maintains Claim to the Heavyweight Throne
By: William Holmes
Wembley Stadium in London, England was the host site for tonight’s Heavyweight Championship fight between Anthony Joshua and Alexander Povetkin for the IBF, WBA, and WBO Heavyweight titles.
A mega fight between Tyson Fury and Deontay Wilder was just announced for December 1st on Showtime, and the winner of the Joshua and Povetkin fight will likely, and hopefully, face the winner of tonight’s bout in the near future.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
The undercard featured several good prospects. Sakhram Giyasov defeated Julio Laguna by a fourth round KO, Sergey Kuzmin defeated David Price by 4th round TKO, and Lawrence Okolie defeated Matty Askin by points.
The co-main event of the night was between Yvan Mendy and Luke Campbell in a lightweight eliminator for the WBC title. Luke Campbell was in clear control for a majority of the fight and pulled out the decision win with scores of 119-109, 118-111, and 116-112.
Anthony Joshua (21-0) and Alexander Povetkin (34-1) met in the main event of the evening before a very pro Anthony Joshua crowd.
Povetkin, the first man to enter the ring, was met with a loud chorus of boos and whistles.
Joshua towered over Povetkin, who had to use good head movement early on to avoid the jab of Joshua. Povetkin was able to land some good right hands to the body, and ended the opening round with a good combination.
Joshua came out aggressive in the second round but had a bloody nose by this point. Povetkin was able to land some good right crosses to the head and body, but Joshua started to pump his jab with more regularity.
Joshua opened up the third round with a solid short right hand, but Povetkin was able to answer with an over the top right hand. Joshua landed a few good uppercuts and left hooks and likely took the round with his accurate punching.
Povetkin had a cut open up by his left eye in the fourth round, and by the fifth round Joshua had landed 30 jabs to the 2 jab that Povetkin landed. But Povetkin was throwing and landing more power shots than Joshua at this point.
Povetkin got tagged with several good jabs by Joshua in the sixth round. Povetkin was aggressive and tried to hurt Joshua with short right hands, but often landed on the guard of Joshua or swung at air.
Joshua opened up the seventh round circling away from Povetkin, who was coming forward with straight right hands. Joshua landed a sudden straight right hand that hurt Povetkin and followed it up with a combination that ended with a right hook that sent Povetkin down.
Povetkin looked hurt but was able to get back to his feet, but was still badly hurt. Joshua jumped on Povetkin with another combination that forced the referee to jump in and stop the fight.
Anthony Joshua wins by TKO at 1:59 of the seventh round.
DAZN Boxing Preview: Amir Khan vs. Samuel Vargas
By: Ste Rowen
At Arena Birmingham this Saturday night, Amir Khan takes on Samuel Vargas in a 12-round contest that will surely propel the winner to a shot at the biggest names in the welterweight division.
Since May 2016, the former unified super-lightweight world champion, has spent just shy of 40 seconds in the ring. On his first return to the ring since being wiped out by ‘Canelo’ Alvarez, Amir Khan stepped between the ropes in March to decimate an overawed and overmatched, Phil Lo Greco in the 1st round.
‘‘I didn’t get a chance to show everyone what I had been working on during my time out, against Lo Greco.’’ Said Khan, 32-4 (20KOs), speaking to his promoter Matchroom last month. ‘‘But you saw the punch power, accuracy, speed and timing, and you’ll see it again against Vargas. I always make it exciting.’’
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
Post-fight in April, Amir mentioned the likes of Adrien Broner as a potential next opponent but whilst Broner is otherwise engaged – trying to get Burger King employees to quit on the spot – Khan, and promoter Eddie Hearn, moved to make the Sam Vargas bout, and keep a historically inactive fighter in Amir busy, before an expected massive welterweight showdown with any of the division’s big names.
‘‘This will take me to the bigger and better fights, and that’s with no disrespect to Sammy. He’s going to come to win. He knows by beating me it propels him on to a whole new level…Vargas is a very tough and well-schooled fighter but if he wants to fight on the inside, I’ll be more than ready for it.’’
‘‘There’re big fights in the pipeline but I can’t afford to look that far ahead. Vargas has my full attention.’’
Colombian, Vargas was on a hot streak of four consecutive victories, since his stoppage loss to Danny Garcia in 2016, until he ran into Mauro Godoy two months ago. At Ontario’s Scotiabank Convention Centre, the two South Americans fought out a tit-for-tat majority draw, which did very little to wow the crowd.
The Canadian resident isn’t exactly renowned for his power, but his KO record isn’t holding him back from laying out to the 2004 Olympic silver medallist, exactly how dangerous of an opponent he will be,
‘‘If I touch him on the chin, he’s going down. That’s a guarantee…He’s been stopped really badly a couple of times, so we know it’s always there and we have 36 minutes to do it…Your body can only take so much before it gives out. Maybe this is the fight for him.’’
As mentioned earlier, Vargas, 29-3-2 (14KOs), isn’t a complete stranger to sharing the ring with the biggest talent. The current WBA-NABA champion has stepped in, and lost to WBC champ at the time, Danny Garcia – going 3 rounds further than Saturday night’s opponent could handle against the Philadelphian – and the 2015 tussle with a 15-0, Errol Spence.
‘‘I’ve been in there with the best. Obviously, I didn’t get the results that I wanted but those defeats have been my biggest lessons…I’m just a regular guy that decided not to quit and not give up, to get up and to keep on going. And here I am.’’
‘‘This is all or nothing for me.’’
This fight will also be Bolton native, Khan’s second under the tutelage of Joe Goosen. Hopefully fans get to see a little more of what the legendary trainer has been teaching him this time round.
Saturday night’s card also includes a number of domestic favourites including;
Current British middleweight champion, Jason Welborn will once again face-off against Tommy Langford, the man he took the Lonsdale belt from back in May, with a 12-round split decision.
British lightweight champion, Lewis Ritson is scheduled for a 10-round stay busy fight against Nicaraguan, Oscar Amador, 10-7 (1KO). The Newcastle native, 16-0 (10KOs), is already set to headline a card in his hometown on the 13th October, where he’ll come up against Belgian, Francesco Patera, 19-3 (7KOs), for the EBU European 135lb title.
2014 Commonwealth gold medallist at 69kg, Scott Fitzgerald, 10-0 (7KOs), takes on southpaw, Craig Morris, 10-1 (3KOs).
Sam ‘The Savage’ Eggington enters the ring for the 3rd time in 2018 when he takes on Tanzanian, Hassan Mwakinyo, 11-2 (7KOs) in a scheduled 10-rounder. Eggington, 23-4 (15KOs) is currently 15th in the WBC’s junior middleweight rankings.
The Midlands Area junior middleweight champion, Ryan Kelly, 11-1 (5KOs), defends his strap for the first time, against the unbeaten Kelcie Ball, 9-0 (2KOs).
Dillian Whyte vs. Joseph Parker Preview
On Saturday night, London’s O2 arena will once again hold host to a Dillian Whyte headline bout as the WBC’s number 1 challenger takes on former WBO heavyweight champion, Joseph Parker for the status of, ‘Best of the Rest’ and a future shot at the true heavyweight honours.
Whyte, 23-1 (17KOs) is fighting at the O2 for the 5th time in his career and the 3rd time as one half of the headline fight. Last time out, Dillian took just 6 rounds to KO the previously unbeaten, Lucas Browne of Australia in impressive fashion. Dominating from the first bell, Whyte seemed to know within the first few minutes that Browne had come to survive. The ‘Body Snatcher’ held his punches a lot better than in previous bouts and, in stark contrast to his awkward encounter with Robert Helenius in 2017, the Jamaican-born heavyweight timed his attacks well, and didn’t throw desperately, when Browne occasionally avoided his assaults. It all culminated in an evil left hook, arguably the best punch Whyte has thrown in his pro career, landing on the Australian’s wide-open chin, sending him face down and conclusively ending the fight.
Photo Credit: Matchroom Boxing Twitter Account
That March matchup came a week before Parker took on Joshua at the Principality stadium in Cardiff, and winning that bout appeared to put Whyte to the front of the heavyweight line waiting for a shot at the belts. Saturday’s fight won’t be for world championship honours, but Dillian, speaking to ‘Give Me Sport’ recognises how close he is to the shot he’s been working for, for so long,
‘‘Anyone that’s successful in life, whoever and wherever they are, have had to take a lot of risks and chances…That’s why I signed with Matchroom. That was a risk because I knew they had Joshua, and Joshua’s the golden boy.’’
And the challenge of facing the former WBO champion,
‘‘I’ve fought everyone that’s been asked of me to fight. I feel good…If he (Parker) didn’t come to fight against Joshua, the biggest fight of his career, what’s he going to change now? He could have come back and had an easier fight, but he didn’t. I respect him for that.’’
‘‘Who knows. They might surprise us, and he might come out and go for it in the first couple of rounds…I don’t expect Parker to try and come and mix it with me in the centre of the ring, because if he does that, he gets dropped early.’’
Saturday’s bout will mark Parker’s return to the ring since losing a 12-round decision to Anthony Joshua; a loss that took his ‘0’ and his WBO world strap.
‘‘The body’s looking better than last fight,’’ Said the Samoan-born boxer, speaking to ‘RadioSport’ in New Zealand. ‘‘It’s stronger than last fight. I feel I do need a stoppage. There might be a bit of favouritism here for the local fighter. We’ve given our thoughts on the officials.’’
‘‘When you have two fighters like myself and Dillian Whyte going at it I think it probably won’t reach the 12th round…His fight plan is just to stand there and throw bombs and he wants me to get sucked in to his plan.’’
‘‘I think this is a must win. The winner of this fight elevates to the top for a world title fight with Joshua, maybe Wilder and then all of these fights with Tyson Fury and the big names.’’
This will be Parker’s, 24-1 (18KOs), 3rd fight in a row in England, after also defending his belt in a drab of a scrap against Hughie Fury last September, in which the New Zealander won via a split decision. The talk is big from Joseph in the build up to the weekend’s main event, but he’s struggled to really impress since his 3-round KO of Alexander Dimitrenko back in late 2016.
As has been mentioned multiple times about this matchup, the winner should maneuverer there way into a world title fight next. The WBC ‘Silver’ and WBO ‘International’ straps aren’t just there for decoration alone. They might be meaningless when they’re wrapped around the winner for post-fight photos, but the belts signify an elevated status in the rankings and if the victor’s follow up bout to Saturday night isn’t a world championship bout, they’ll have a pretty big target on their back with the best of the rest of the division ready to shoot.
Eddie Hearn Announces American Streaming Service
By: Sean Crose
British super promoter Eddie Hearn has officially launched a streaming service here in the United States. According to the press release: “Matchroom Boxing, a world leading boxing promoter, and Perform Group, the digital leader in global sports media, have today announced the creation of a landmark $1billion joint venture and the biggest-ever deal in boxing.” Matchroom is Hearn’s company and it’s clear he’s making it a major player in US boxing. Hearn announced the deal on Thursday with Perfom Group CEO Simon Denyer.
“This is a historic moment for Matchroom and the sport of boxing,” said Hearn “Since our expansion to the US, we have been looking for a partner that shares our vision and that can give us the volume of dates and rights fees required to build the strongest stable in world boxing and take it to a new level.” Hearn intends to showcase 16 Matchroom promoted cards in America this year, along with another 16 from Great Britain. Matchroom will also include all the Pay Per View cards he airs across the Atlantic. “None of the fight nights will be on PPV,” the press release claims. “All will be available for one monthly fee and no long term contract.”
“This is a dream scenario for us,” said Hearn. “We can build a formidable team of fighters and also put our stamp on events from production to talent to in arena experience. Our plan is to make DAZN the home of boxing and with 32 big fight nights already confirmed from the US and UK we are nicely on our way…America – we have well and truly arrived, let the fun begin!” According to the LA Times, Hearn claims he “has $110 million per year to spend on the eight-year deal.” Such a bank account may allow Hearn to bring in the kinds of big American names he hopes to.
Denyer claimed that “Perform Group has a rich history of long term strategic partnerships with the best rights holders in world. I’m excited about working with Matchroom; we share the same passion and vision for reigniting boxing in the US and it’s time for DAZN to provide an exciting new platform for these great events. It’s a better deal for everyone – especially fight fans.” Streaming is making a huge impact on the sport of boxing recently. Aside from Hearn’s Matchroom deal, ESPN has recently begun its own streaming service.
HBO World Championship Boxing Preview: Seldin vs. Ortiz, Miller vs. Wach, Jacobs vs. Arias
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Eddie Hearn’s latest acquisition, Daniel Jacobs, will be on display on HBO. He will be facing Luis Arias in the main event of the evening. Two other bouts are also planned to be broadcast, a heavyweight fight between Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller and Mariusz Wach in the heavyweight division and a junior welterweight bout between Cletus Seldin and Roberto Ortiz.
The NYCB Live, Home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum in Uniondale, New York will be the host site for Saturday’s boxing card.
Photo Credit: Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing
The following is a preview of Saturday’s HBO card.
Cletus Seldin (25-0) vs. Roberto Ortiz (35-1-2); Junior Welterweights
The opening bout of the night will be between Cletus “The Hebrew Hammer” Seldin and Roberto Ortiz in the junior welterweight division.
Seldin is a local fighter with a large, supportive fan base. He’s fought in New York for most of his career with a large majority of his fights taking place at the Paramount Theatre. He’s undefeated, but he is currently thirty one years old and his window of opportunity for a legitimate world title fight is getting smaller.
His opponent Roberto Ortiz is the same age and has fought mainly in Mexico. He fought one time in the United States and was stopped by Lucas Matthysse. Ortiz will have a slight two and a half inch height and reach advantage.
Neither Seldin or Ortiz has a notable amateur background in boxing. However, Seldin does have experience in wrestling and judo. He also was a finalist in the New York Golden Gloves tournament.
Both boxers have decent power. Seldin has sixteen stoppage wins on his resume while Ortiz has twenty six. Seldin has never tasted defeated while Ortiz was stopped in his one fight against a big name opponent.
Neither boxer has any big name victories. Seldin’s best wins were against Jesus Selig, Johnny Garcia, and Bayan Jargal. Ortiz’s best wins were against Reyes Sanchez and John Aparicio.
This is an excellent test for Seldin and it will be the toughest of his career. Ortiz has a good record, but lost the only fight in which he faced a good opponent. Seldin should be able to win a close victory, but we’ll definitely have a better idea if he’s a legitimate contender on Saturday night.
Jarrell Miller (19-0) vs. Mariusz Wach (33-2); Heavyweights
Jarrell Miller is an intriguing heavyweight prospect in that he has experienced some surprising success in another combat sport, that being kickboxing.
He was able to defeat UFC veteran Pat Barry in a kickboxing match and went 19-0 in Muay Thai before going to kick boxing. He found some success in kickboxing’s prestige league, K1, and lost to UFC veteran Mirko Cro Cop twice by decision.
He has been very successful since switching to boxing. He’s undefeated and has seventeen stoppage wins, including eight stoppage victories in a row. He fought once in 2017 and three times in 2016.
Miller does have some amateur boxing experience. He made it to the finals of the New York Golden Gloves and lost to Tor Hammer on points. His opponent, Mariusz Wach, also had a successful amateur career and was a Polish National Champion and an Olympic alternate.
Miller will have an eight year age advantage on Wach, who is currently thirty seven years old. Wach will have a height advantage of about three and a half inches and a reach advantage of four inches.
In addition to being tested as a kickboxer, Miller also has defeated some notable heavyweights. His notable wins include Gerald Washington, Fred Kassi, and Donovan Dennis.
Wach’s biggest wins have come against Tye Fields, Kevin McBride, and Jason Gavern. His losses were to Alexander Povetkin and Wladimir Klitschko.
Wach’s age and relative inactivity is a concern. He fought only once in 2017 and once in 2016, against less than impressive opposition.
There’s been a lot of talk recently about a potential heavyweight fight between Deontay Wilder and Anthony Joshua, but an impressive win by Miller could result in him getting a title shot before Wilder and Joshua meet inside the ring.
Daniel Jacobs (32-2) vs. Luis Arias (18-0); Middleweights
Daniel Jacobs earned the title of “Miracle Man” after defeating a diagnosis of bone cancer in 2011. He was previously signed to Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) but has recently decided to sign with Eddie Hearn and Matchroom Sport.
Jacobs had a very successful amateur career. He was a Junior Olympics National Champion, a Police Athletic League (PAL) National Champion, and a National Golden Gloves Champion. His opponent, Luis Arias, also had a very successful amateur career. He was a US National Champion at middleweight in 2008 and 2010 and was also a Gold Medal PAL winner.
Arias is twenty seven years old and three years younger than Jacobs. Jacobs will have a very sleight half an inch reach advantage over Arias.
Jacobs has a large edge in power over Arias. Jacobs has stopped twenty nine of his opponents and nine of his past ten fights were TKO victories. Arias only has nine stoppage victories, but three of his past four fights were TKO victories.
Jacobs has the better professional resume of the two boxers. He has defeated the likes of Ishe Smith, Jarrod Fletcher, Caleb Truax, Sergio Mora, and Peter Quillin. His losses were a close decision loss to Gennady Golovkin and a shocking knockout loss to Dmitry Pirog.
Arias has defeated the likes of Arif Magomedov, Scott Sigmon, and Jorge Silva.
Arias does have an edge in activity. He already fought twice in 2017 and fought three times in 2016. Jacobs has only fought once in 2016 and once in 2017.
This should actually be a tougher fight for Jacobs than most expect. Arias has the amateur background to match Jacobs and he has never tasted defeat. He’s also been in the ring more often than Jacobs and won’t have to worry about ring rust.
However, Jacobs was very impressive in his defeat to Gennady Golovkin and is filled with confidence. Arias has never felt the power of a boxer like Jacobs and has never been in the ring as a professional with someone of Jacobs’ caliber.
This is Daniel Jacobs’ fight to lose, but Arias has enough talent to make it closer than expected.
Daniel Jacobs: “At The End Of The Day It’s About What You Do Inside The Ring.”
By: Sean Crose
Top middleweight Daniel Jacobs may be taking his November 11th opponent, Luis Arias, seriously as a foe. What Jacobs is not doing, however, is taking Arias seriously as a talker. “It is kind of hard to listen to him because he is trying to force you guys into believing something that does not exist or really is not there,” Jacobs said of Arias on a recent conference call. Still, Jacobs claimed he wasn’t shocked by Arias’ words, as Arias was once part of Floyd Mayweather’s stable of fighters.
Photo Credit Ed Mulholland/Matchroom Boxing
“You have to realize that this guy is a former TMT (The Money Team) guy,” said Jacobs. “He is used to the brash talk.” There’s little doubt that the 18-0 Arias is at least talking a good game in the lead up for a bout most expect him to lose. “I’m going to rough him up,” he told me. “I’m going to be in his face all night.” Some might argue that’s not the best strategy to employ against a man with an over eighty percent knockout ratio, but Arias appears confident as his showdown with Jacobs at New York’s Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum approaches.
“I do think he’s over-rated,” he said, referring to Jacobs. “If you go and look at his record,” Arias went on to add, “there is nobody there that he beat.” British promoter Eddie Hearn, who has recently teamed up with Jacobs, wasn’t willing to sell Milwaukee’s Arias short. “Maybe I’m a little bit different,” Hearn claimed. “Maybe I’m too much of a fan – it the upset comes, the upset comes.” Not that there was any questions where the man’s loyalty could be found. “Of course Danny Jacobs is our guy,” he said, “and I want him to win but if Luis Arias goes out there and gets the victory – good on him.”
I asked Hearn if Jacob’s impressive performance against Gennady Golovkin at Madison Square Garden last winter had anything to do with his interest in the Brooklyn native. “Many felt that he won,” Hearn said of that fight. “You know that he’s on that level.” The promoter made it clear, though, that he was well aware of the cold, hard facts of the matter. “He (Jacobs) didn’t win (the Golovkin fight),” he stated, “and that’s the reality of it.”
Jacobs also came across as a practical man on the call. After admitting he’d like to knock Arias out, Jabobs went on to say that he “would be completely fine getting a decision.” A decision? Against a man he’s clearly supposed to be better than? “I’m a boxer puncher,” Jacobs explained, “and I love to box.” In fact, Jacobs is such a realist that he made it clear where he feels he stands in relation to Golovkin and Canelo Alvarez, who Golovkin recently fought to a draw. “I know,” he said, “that even though these guys aren’t really fearful of me, right now I’m in a lose-lose situation with those guys because I am not technically a champion.”
“They know it’s not worth it to step in there with a guy like me,” Jacobs continued. “I’d rather continue to do my job, climb the ladder, get a title eventually and maybe chase these guys, but to fight me right now? I don’t see that happening.” And so, for the moment at least, there’s Arias. “My job is to continue what I’ve been doing,” said Jacobs. “I’m a professional and have to act accordingly and the goal is to get the job done and look impressive.”
What’s next for WBA super-flyweight champion Kal Yafai?
By: Dale Josephs
Khalid “Kal” Yafai finally revived Birmingham boxing by bringing world championship boxing back to the region earlier this year, with a lively card of extremely high quality bouts, as well as a WBA world title on the line.Suguru Murunaka was the preferred opponent for Yafai’s first voluntary defence; a durable Japanese fighter who’s never been stopped but had previously only ever fought in his home surroundings of Korakuen Hall, Tokyo.
Eddie Hearn, the figurehead of Matchroom Boxing, delivered once again with a truly enjoyable spectacle which witnessed local Brummies compete; younger brother Gamal Yafai, Sam Eggington and Frankie Gavin emerged victorious from their bouts. Still WBA super-flyweight world champion, Kal Yafai, headlined the Birmingham bill which enticed a rammed arena to cheer, jeer, and drink plenty of beer. The Barclaycard Arena, which sits next to Brindley Place overlooking the famous canals, was occupied by a energetic, vibrant crowd which, along with the lights, music and fighters, created a thrilling atmosphere.
Admittedly, fans wereentirely anticipating Yafai to unite both his raw talent and ferocious power to make easy work of Murunaka. Yet, the Japanese fighter showed heart, courage and commitment to ensure Kal had to work to retain his belt. Despite the contest lasting 12 rounds being seen as extra, unnecessary ring time, it did mean the super-flyweight champion was allowed to showcase his superior boxing ability. Over the distance, Murunaka was completely out-boxed.And, considering Yafai’s hands were immediately in ice following the fight, Murunaka proved he is very tough and durable and is able to take a volume of big punches. Kal was clearly a fan favourite in his home town and he made certain the fans observed a successful defence of his prestigious title.
Now, despite Yafai allowing his bruised hands to heal thoroughly before he advanced any further in his career, the next move in his so-far perfect career has now been plotted. Later this year, the Birmingham based boxer will encounter a Japanese fighter for the second successive fight, and yet another fighter with an unblemished record. The second defence of Yafai’s WBA super-flyweight title will see him share the ring with 25-year-old, Sho Ishida.
So, will this Japanese fighter be able to achieve what the previous one couldn’t and inflict a first defeat on Kal Yafai’s record?
Well, Yafai himself seems to think this will be his most difficult fight to date, and believes Ishida’s unusual height for a super-flyweight will potentially cause him problems. He told Sky Sports, “I’ve watched a few bits of him and the first thing about him is he is very tall. He’s very, very tall for a super-fly so I have no idea how he does that, but he actually looks very good as well.”
Alongside his incredible 5 foot 8 frame, which is 4 inches more than Yafai, he also possesses natural, fierce power which has enabled him to win 13 out of his 24 professional wins inside the allotted distance. But, it’s his range and boxing ability that could prove to be the difference, with a huge reach advantage of 10cm, Kal may discover an extreme difficulty in getting close enough to land his own decisive shots. Although, Yafai is a big body puncher and has showed time and time again his ability to land ferocious punches to his opponents’ ribs and midriff. With that in mind, if he can reduce the gap between himself and Ishida, hurtful body shots could take its toll on a taller, thinner opponent.
Providing Yafai successfully defends his title and retains the WBA super-flyweight belt, an obvious progression would be to establish himself in America and aim to unify the division. Even though Roman Gonzales was finally conquered by Srisaket Sor Runvisai, he remains a colossal name within the 115lbs division, and still has an opportunity to acquire revenge in his rematch with Runvisai. So, along with Roman Gonzales, other opponents which could assist Yafai in creating a legacy would be the other champions; IBF champion Jerwin Acajas, WBO title-holder Naoya Inoue or even WBC champion Srisaket Sor Runvisai if he beats Gonzales for the second time would set up massive clashes in the super-flyweight bracket.
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Errol Spence Jr. vs. Kell Brook
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Errol Spence Jr. vs. Kell Brook
By: William Holmes
On Saturday afternoon at the Bramall Lane Football Ground in Sheffield, England one of the best fights that could be made in the welterweight division will occur.
Uber prospect Errol Spence Jr. will take on IBF Welterweight Champion Kell Brook in Kell Brook’s home town and this bout will be televised on Showtime in the United States.
Eleven bouts are currently scheduled to take place on the undercard, including a WBA Super Middleweight Title bout between George Groves and Fedor Chudinov. It’s unlikely that the Groves bout will be televised in the United States absent a quick stoppage.
The following is a preview of the IBF Welterweight Title fight. The lead promoter for this bout is Eddie Hearn’s Matchroom Boxing.
Kell Brook (36-1) vs. Errol Spence Jr. (21-0); IBF Welterweight Title
The welterweight division has always been a stacked division full of talent. Keith Thurman currently holds the WBA and WBC World Titles, Kell Brook holds the IBF Title, and Manny Pacquiao holds the WBO title, but only Kell Brook had the courage to move up two weight classes to face Gennady Golovkin and give him a better fight than most expected.
Brook could have taken an easy fight after his bout with Golovkin and most boxing experts would not have blamed him. However, Brook has decided to take on one of the most dangerous prospects in the sport today, Errol “The Truth” Spence Jr.
Errol Spence was an amateur star on the United States amateur scene and was a 2011 US National Champion and a 2012 Olympic team member. Kell Brook didn’t compete in the Olympics, but was able to experience a good amount of success as an amateur in England, including two Amateur Boxing Association of England titles.
Spence appears to have the advantage in the physicals. Spence will have about a half an inch height advantage, a three inch reach advantage, and is four years younger than Brook. Spence also appears to have the edge in power. Spence has stopped eighteen of his opponents and is currently riding an eight fight stoppage streak.
Brook also has power in his hands as he has stopped twenty five of his opponents. Seven of his past eight wins were stoppage victories, but his last bout was a TKO loss.
Both boxers have been fairly active the past two years. Spence fought twice in 2016 and four times in 2015. Brook fought twice in 2016 and twice in 2015.
Spence has soundly defeated the likes of Leonard Bundu, Chris Algieri, Alejandro Barrera, Chris Van Heerden, Phil Lo Greco, Samuel Vargas, Ronald Cruz, Emmanuel Lartei Lartey. Kell Brook has defeated the likes of Kevin Bizier, Frankie Gavin, Shawn Porter, Vyacheslav Senchenko, Carson Jones, Matthew Hatton, Lovemore Ndou, Michael Jennings.
This is a tough bout to choose the winner. Spence will be in enemy territory and the 30,000 expected fans in attendance will be loudly cheering for Brook. However, Brook is coming off a TKO loss to Gennady Golovkin and has not been seen in the ring since.
Additionally, Brook will have to make the cut back down to 147 again after competing in the middleweight division.
This is a rare time that we get to see a young prospect with high expectations take on an established champion still in the midst of his athletic prime, and it’s a fight that hardcore boxing fans are looking forward to.
It’s a fight that this writer expects Errol Spence Jr. to officially announce to the world that he is, in fact, the next big thing with a convincing and clear victory.