Somebody’s 0 Has Got to Go: The Top Three Fights Fans Want to See
By: Oliver McManus
“Somebody’s 0 has got to go”, it’s possibly the most used phrase in modern boxing. Mind you, if David Diamante has his way it will soon become “let’s nix a nil” but the premise remains the same, two unbeaten fighters putting their records on the line in, hopefully, guts-and-glory encounters.
Don’t get me wrong, a loss doesn’t make you a bad fighter and beating an unbeaten man doesn’t, equally, make you a star player in the sport. As we’ve seen recently there have been a fair few damp squibs when it comes to unbeaten vs unbeaten – Andrade vs Kautondokwa, anyone?
Nonetheless there are plenty of mouth-watering fights in prospect and these are three fights I want to see, at world level, where someone’s 0 has got to go…
Anthony Joshua vs Oleksandr Usyk – Heavyweight
Where better place to kick off than in the heavyweight division? Anthony Joshua has had things pretty much his own way at the top of the game since winning his first world title – sanctioned by the IBF- in 2016. Since that capitulation of Charles Martin, Joshua has fought in six world title bouts and added the WBA, WBO and IBO straps to his collection.
With a touted fight against Deontay Wilder falling by the wayside – take whoever’s side you want on that thorny issue – Joshua is next out on April 13th, at Wembley, with an opponent yet to be scheduled in.
But I’ll be honest, the tag of undisputed aside, I’d much rather see AJ in with the man who holds all of the cruiserweight belts and, arguably, one of the best in the world pound for pound. Usyk seems to me, and many others, the toughest challenge that Joshua can face.
Technically he is sublime and he possesses the heavyweight power required to take Joshua into deep water but, let’s not forget, Usyk has amateur pedigree in the heavier division so it’s not like he’s inexperienced at the weight. Even having said that experience wouldn’t be an issue for someone of such natural quality as Usyk for his fight IQ and ring-ability transcends weight classes.
Coming off the back of a breezy fight against Tony Bellew in which, if we’re honest, he never looked out of control the natural step is for Usyk to go up to heavyweight. Joshua, we know, is searching for “legacy defining” fights and a bout against Oleksandr Usyk is about as big as they come.
The fight seems the most realistic, out of all the big heavyweight contests, with Eddie Hearn taking an active involvement in the promotion of the Ukrainian powerhouse so, fingers crossed, we could see a blockbuster event next year.
Winner of Errol Spence Jnr and Mikey Garcia vs Terence Crawford – Welterweight
Announced last week is the fight that, if we’re honest, made no real sense. Mikey Garcia was the man we all wanted to see fight Vasyl Lomachenko and Errol Spence was the champion looking to unify with Terrence Crawford.
The IBF Welterweight title will be on line come March 16th with Garcia looking to become a five weight champion in his 40th fight. A frighteningly skilled boxer, the California native has continually proved his credentials with a frightening knockout power.
In his last three fights Garcia has been extended the distance but has boxed with class throughout the 36 rounds, controlling the pace of the fight and manouvering his way out of danger with a comprehensive ease.
Errol Spence Jnr goes into the bout with an obvious weight advantage – fighting 12lbs heavier than the division in which Garcia actively holds a world title. 2 years the younger man, Spence burst onto the scene in 2016 with knockout victories over Chris Algieri and Leonard Bundu.
Having captured the IBF crown with a ferocious victory against Kell Brook, in Sheffield, the Texas-man has defended the belt twice in equally terrifying fashion. A non-stop work rate with continual punch output, if you let the champion unfurl his hands then you’re going to be in trouble.
And whilst the question of weight will loom over the bout until fight night, Garcia is a consummate professional and an outstanding athlete. For a man trying to prove his ability in the welterweight division, there could be no better way to silence the critics than claiming a world title in your first fight so that’s where Terence Crawford comes into play.
Errol Spence is the man that people wanted to see in a unification class with Bud, they would produce a scintillating fight. If Mikey Garcia is able to overcome such a challenge then he will have instantaneously justified getting a fight with the WBO champion.
All roads lead to unification, or so they… bring it on!
Artur Beterbiev vs Dmitry Bivol – Light Heavyweight
We’ll deal with the younger boxer first in Dmitry Bivol who ticked over towards the back of 2014 with a Bronze Medal at the 2008 Youth World Championships and a Gold Medal at the 2013 World Combat Games. A two time Russian national champion with a record of 268-15, his amateur pedigree was impressive but paled in comparison to his counterpart.
As a professional, though, the 27 year old really turned up the heat by claiming the first, major, belt of his career in just his fifth fight. The knockout power we all enjoy was evident from the first second of his debut but, with that, he’d find opponents looking to hold and just survive through the early phases. Not that that mattered, Bivol has always found ways of punishing his opponent.
Even when he has been stretched the distance – three times in 14 fights – the Kyrgyzstan-born man has always looked in complete control with an array of power punches as well as technical skill. Of course we’ll all remember his fierce one-punch knockout over, admittedly over-matched, Trent Broadhurst that saw Bivol claimed champion.
Successful defences against Sullivan Barrera and Isaac Chilemba have followed – he next fights Jean Pascal on the 24th – but surely the Russian will be eying up the options for unification come the turn of the year.
Beterbiev, on the other hand, turned pro in the middle of 2013 and initially built up a strong following in Canada – the elite amateur (World Champion & runner up, two-time European champion) had moved to Montreal in order to purse his professional ambitions.
At 5 and 0 he stepped up to face Tavoris Cloud – a former IBF champion – and dealt with the threat of the American, coming off a world title loss, in convincing fashion. The momentum from this bout seemed to follow as Beterbiev looked to fight better opponents at every opportunity possible.
A refreshing attitude of “fight who’s in front of me and knock them out” has ensured success with all thirteen of his wins coming via an early stoppage. A grizzly fighter, that’s the best way to describe it, Beterbiev never looks the fastest of opponents but, boy, does he have vicious punch power.
Typically standing with his hands at shoulder level, the 33 year old stands ready to pounce and is mature enough not to go out all-guns-blazing. The IBF champion won his title against Enrico Koelling last November and, in a fight that ended in the 12th, boxed patiently and calmly to do so.
Two unbeaten Russian powerhouses, slugging it out to unify light heavyweight world titles… what more could you ask for?
Mikey Garcia Vacates IBF Lightweight Title; Richard Commey To Vie For Vacant Belt
By Jake Donovan
For the second time in as many fights, Mikey Garcia has elected to vacate an alphabet title in pursuit of bigger game.
The unbeaten lightweight titlist and pound-for-pound entrant has agreed to relinquish his International Boxing Federation (IBF) lightweight title in lieu of satisfying a mandatory title defense versus Richard Commey.
Photo Credit: Mikey Garcia Twitter Account
IBF spokesperson informed BoxingInsider.com that Garcia had formally notified the New Jersey-based sanctioning body of his decision, confirming a news story first reported by ESPN.com senior writer Dan Rafael.
The move comes ahead of a second ordered purse bid between Garcia and Commey due to defaulting on a previously reached verbal agreement.
Garcia (39-0, 30KOs) inherited the mandatory challenge following his points win over previously unbeaten Robert Easter Jr. in their unification bout this past July. Both boxers entered the contest with the understanding that the winner would be immediately ordered to next face Commey, with the IBF granting Easter Jr. such an exception in order to pursue the aforementioned title unification clash.
With Garcia scoring a landslide decision, he was on the hook to satisfy the overdue mandatory title defense which was ordered by the IBF on August 1. The first ordered purse bid was canceled after Richard Schaefer (representing Garcia) and Lou DiBella (Commey’s promoter) informed the IBF and various media outlets—including BoxingInsider.com—at the time that a verbal agreement had been reached.
However, Commey was the only party to send back a signed contract. When Garcia failed to do so within the 15-day period assigned by the IBF, the agreement was considered null and void with a new purse bid hearing scheduled for Tuesday.
By that point, speculation had run rampant that California’s Garcia—who has won titles in four weight divisions—would be moving up to welterweight in pursuit of a challenge versus unbeaten Texas native Errol Spence for his welterweight title. The matchup had been rumored for several weeks, but never evolving past casual conversation.
Because the mandatory was overdue, Garcia could not file for an exception which factored into his opting to vacate in lieu of being stripped for the title.
Commey (27-2, 24KOs) will now make his second attempt at a lightweight title, both coming in vacant title fights. His first bid ended just short, going tooth and nail with Easter Jr. in dropping a competitive decision in their Sept. ’16 shootout. The Ghana-bred boxer was similarly edged out in a title eliminator just three months later, losing a split decision to Denis Shafikov.
Three straight wins have followed, including 6th round knockout of previously unbeaten Alejandro Luna in their final eliminator this past March. The bout took place on the Showtime-televised undercard to Garcia’s 140-pound championship winning effort over Sergey Lipinets—interestingly with Garcia vacating the bout soon thereafter as he opted to return to the 135-pound division.
His drop back down in weight turned out to be for just one night, at least for now—a familiar pattern since his return the sport in 2016 following a 30-month forced hiatus.
All five of Garcia’s bouts in his second career have taken place between 135-140 pounds, although barely staying in the same place for very long. His 3rd round knockout of then-undefeated Dejan Zlaticanin to win a lightweight title in Jan. ’17 was followed by a pair of 140-pound bouts, scoring a points win over Adrien Broner last July and then Lipinets.
In his pursuit of Spence and a title in a fifth weight class, Garcia—who spent the first eight years of his career fighting at 126 and 130—would be making his welterweight debut. While he still holds a lightweight title, that reign could too be in jeopardy. Still awaiting the 30-year old is a mandatory title defense versus Luke Campbell, who earned his second title crack following a decision victory over Yvan Mendy in September to avenge his lone defeat.
Meanwhile, Commey will soon enter negotiations with the next leading available contender for the IBF lightweight title. The current next highest-rated lightweight is Russia’s Isa Chaniev (13-1, 6KOs), who has won three straight including a career-best decision win over former lightweight titlist Ismael Barroso this past May in Riga, Latvia.
Back to Basics: Recognizing the Significance of Boxing Fundamentals Through Mikey Garcia
By John Tsoi:
Scanning through the current boxing pound-for-pound rankings, all of the entrants possess an “X factor” – something unique that makes them great. Heavy-handed hitters such as Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence Jr are rightfully included, while technicians like Vasyl Lomachenko, Terence Crawford and Oleksandr Usyk also justified their places in the list after glittering performances. However, Mikey Garcia is actually the name that stood out the most. Despite not being a knockout artist after moving up in weight classes, nor is he blessed with athleticism or speed, Mikey earned his spot as one of the pound-for-pound fighters with something many aspiring boxers may have overlooked – solid boxing fundamentals. So basic to the human eye, yet there is so much more behind the fighting style devoid of flashiness as demonstrated by the four-division world champion.
In boxing gyms, beginners often look up to their more experienced counterparts who display massive power and fast combinations, and hence try to mimic them. However, there are always a few who never capture people’s attention because all they do is practise rudimentary punches, for example, throwing a jab over and over again. Years later, these boxers go on to have successful careers, surprising those who doubted they would go far because they never looked spectacular in training. Mikey Garcia is just like that too. We never see him being showy in training camps, but he gets the job done in the ring. He constantly proves that there is merit in getting the basics right, which can help one go a long way in the competitive world of boxing.
Just like what Showtime commentator and analyst Paulie Malignaggi said, Mikey is like a “textbook boxer”. Apart from the abilities to throw sharp punches and maintain a good balance, he is graced with a great sense of timing, allowing him to conserve energy without the need to throw a barrage of punches while still being able to land enough and hurt his opponents. On the defensive end, he is well-schooled with Boxing 101. Both of his hands are always up in position to protect himself, whether against head or body punches. This should resonate with a plethora of boxing trainers who frequently tell their fighters to put their hands up, especially when they get tired in the later rounds. Aside from stamina issues, some boxers employ the stance where their lead hand is low or covering the stomach area, much like Floyd Mayweather’s stance. There is no right or wrong in various boxing stances, but when you do not have Floyd’s reaction time or the required defensive mindfulness, it is better to learn from Mikey by putting both hands up. Eleider Alvarez’s first knockdown against Sergey Kovalev illustrates the ramification of not doing so. All of these combine together to make Mikey a well-rounded fighter no matter which weight class he fights in.
Mikey Garcia’s victory over Adrien Broner reveals several points about basic boxing strategies. First of all, Garcia was able to counter off Broner’s body punches. There was an instance where he blocked the American’s attempt to the body with his elbows, then came right up to Broner’s chin with a counter left hook – one of Garcia’s best punches that stunned opponents like Sergey Lipinets. In addition, notice how Garcia always responded to Broner’s offense immediately with his own punches, especially when Broner landed clean on him. A boxer cannot keep defending without retaliating because it adds more confidence to your opponent. In his fights, Garcia has a tendency to mount his own offense which tends to overshadow what his rivals did previously, and therefore swinging the rounds back to his favour as well as sending a stern message in the psychological warfare between the two.
On top of his boxing fundamentals, Mikey has a clever method of disrupting an opponent’s rhythm in attack and setting up his own punches. When Broner was forced to the ropes, Mikey tried to unleash short combinations and did land some of them. However, peruse the fight again and you will see that after the punches, he put his left glove in the face of Broner, which looks like a jab, and proceeded to set up his next round of attack. By doing so, Mikey temporarily “blinds” his opponents so they are not in a position to see clearly, and thus are unable to counter him. Similarly, he sometimes ends his combinations in single or double jabs. This reminds us of how Floyd Mayweather Sr likes to work with his fighters on the mitts – ending punch sequences in several jabs. It serves to stop the opponent from reacting instantly and to create distance for moving away safely. These are effective old school techniques smartly applied by the unified champion.
Garcia’s showdown against Robert Easter Jr epitomizes how a shorter boxer should fight an opponent with advantageous height and reach. Probing with patience in the first few rounds, Mikey did not lose ground over Easter’s long jab. He either parried them with his gloves or stepped back just enough to avoid them. Gradually, Mikey got in range and landed his accurate “1-2” combinations with perfect form. The jab is straight and sharp, not a so-called “lazy” jab that gets countered; while the right hand is thrown with the intention of punching through the opponent – a key approach of throwing a punch properly. Perhaps the best takeaway is how Mikey extends his punches. A good boxing coach would demonstrate how much of a difference it makes when you simply throw a jab or straight right without moving, compared to taking a small step forward with the jab or turning your body with the straight right. Mikey’s well-timed punches were able to travel further due to the extension such that Easter Jr was not able to fight “tall” with his reach advantage.
The final point is about how Garcia consistently brings what he trained in the gym to the actual fights. Some boxers only look good in training camps, but they can’t seem to perform in fight nights. Garcia’s knockdown of Easter Jr is actually a technique he practised repeatedly. He would throw a “1-2” on the trainer-held boxing shield, then after a really short pause, he would throw a left hook. It is not the conventional “1-2-3” punch sequence since the deliberate pause before the left hook is to surprise the opponent who is likely to think that the combination ends with a straight right. Therefore, Garcia’s preparations in camps are highly pragmatic, albeit not fancy at all for the cameras.
After unifying the lightweight titles, Mikey Garcia voiced out his desire to do what seems to be a “mission impossible” in boxing – go up twelve pounds to fight the tough and talented Errol Spence Jr. The best part is that he means it. Knowing that the two-year lay-off took away valuable time in his career, he returned with guns blazing. Three out of his past five opponents were undefeated before they fought. As he continues to journey to the peak of boxing, we should applaud and respect his fearless attitude of only wanting to fight the best. And to all the young boxers with big dreams, never overlook the fundamentals, because a small leak will sink a great ship.
Mikey Garcia’s Bid for Pound-for-pound No. 1
By: Kirk Jackson
Mikey Garcia emerged victorious over the weekend improving his record to 39-0 (30 KO’s) and capturing his fifth world title in a lightweight unification bout against Robert Easter 21-1 (14 KO’s).
After another dominant performance, Garcia’s star continues to shine brighter and it’s time for the boxing public to seriously consider Garcia as the top pound-for-pound fighter.
Surveying various pound-for-pound lists, they’re likely framed to feature the likes of Terence Crawford, Vasyl Lomachenko, Gennady Golovkin and Errol Spence.
Undisputed cruiserweight champion Oleksandr Usyk is a fighter who should be considered in the running as one of boxing’s best fighters and is slept on by a vast majority of the mainstream boxing community.
Making a case for Garcia, he has five world titles across four weight classes in seven championship fights. Traveling from weight class to weight class displays the will and desires to be great.
— Team Mikey Garcia (@mikeygarcia) July 30, 2018
Among his pound-for-pound contemporaries, Garcia faced and defeated a larger tally of world champion fighters. As of now, Garcia defeated 10 world champions, six by knockout.
By comparison, Crawford and Lomachenko defeated six world champions each, Golovkin defeated five, Usyk defeated four and Spence defeated three.
This statistic is not the end-all argument especially considering the multitude of variables at play, but this statistic looks good on paper in favor of Garcia.
Accolades, accomplishments, world titles or records set factor in towards a fighter’s pound-for-pound status. The resume is a crucial factor.
Another measure is the skill-set of pound-for-pound elite fighters and the ability to display these talents against the highest level of opposition.
Garcia displays a certain skill-set required to transcend across several weight divisions. Although not flashy, the subtle adept techniques and overall consistency is what establishes Garcia amongst the greatest fighters of today.
Because Garcia isn’t ostentatious with his lateral movement, punches and overall style, his skills tend to get overlooked.
In the sport of basketball, Tim Duncan for example is considered one of the greatest players of all-time, but his style of play for many observes is bland in comparison to flamboyant players such as Michael Jordan or Kobe Bryant.
Lomachenko and Crawford are so skillful and flashy with what they can do, it’s somewhat easier for the common viewer to acknowledge and visualize what makes them great and transcendent as fighters.
As he showcased against Easter, Garcia measures his distance well and can find the right angles to land a variety of well-placed accurate punches.
Not recognized for blazing hand speed, Garcia contends with excellent timing and possessing excellent foot work he can move in and out of range; avoiding danger at pivotal times.
Easter can even attest. “He was just a better man tonight,” Easter said. “I take my hat off to Mikey. He’s a true warrior. … I just couldn’t find the timing and I just couldn’t let my right hand go.”
Another measure establishing and separating the pound-for-pound best from other great fighters worthy of the crown is the risks and challenges that fighter is willing to take to prove his weight in gold so-to-speak.
This year alone, Garcia moved up in weight capturing the vacant IBF junior welterweight title against Sergey Lipinets.
This past weekend he added another world title to his collection defeating undefeated Easter and unifying the light weight division.
As far as seeking greater challenges, Garcia intends to face one of boxing’s most avoided fighters and current IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence.
“There’s no one else that excites me enough, that motivates me and that can challenge me other than Errol Spence, and I’m willing to take that challenge, all the way up, because that’s the fight that will motivate me the most,” said Garcia at the post-fight press conference.
”I’m here to challenge myself. He is the best. He might feel that it’s an easy fight for him, that I’m too small, and that’s fine. Let’s get in the ring and let’s go to work.”
That is the biggest challenge possible. Forgoing further lightweight unification with Lomachenko, if this proposed dream bout against Spence manifests into fruition, this would be the third weight division and third championship bout of the year for Garcia.
“I’m not going to wait around for Lomachenko. I want Errol Spence, bigger threat but bigger reward,” said Garcia. “No one has beat 3 undefeated champions in 3 divisions within 9 months that excites me.”
Not only is this pound-for-pound territory, Garcia would be entering Henry Armstrong like territory.
If Garcia is able to pull of the monumental upset and slay the proverbial monster and one of boxing’s top avoided boogeymen, Garcia without question establishes himself as the best fighter pound-for-pound.
Comparing Mikey Garcia’s & Henry Armstrong’s Road to Titles
By: Ken Hissner
Henry “Homicide Hank” Armstrong was 21 when he won his first world title in the Featherweight division with a record of 75-11-6 knocking out Petey Sarron, 105-22-13 in 3 rounds at MSG, NY.
Mikey Garcia was 23 when he won his first world title in the Featherweight division with a record of 30-0 defeating Orlando Salido, 40-11-2 by TD8 when Garcia suffered a broken nose from Salido’s head. Garcia made one defense.
Armstrong was 28 when he won his second world title in the welterweight division with a record of 90-11-6 though only weighing 133 ½ defeating Barney Ross, 74-3-3, over 15 rounds at MSG, NY.
Garcia was 25 when he won his second world title in the Super Lightweight division defeating Roman Martinez, 27-1-2, over 12 rounds at Corpus Christi, TEX. Garcia made one defense.
Armstrong was 29 when he won his third world title in the Lightweight division winning a split decision over Lou Ambers, 75-5-7, over 15 rounds at MSG, NY.
Armstrong would make one lightweight defense while still holding the welterweight title of which he made five defenses.
Garcia was 29 when he won his third world title in the Lightweight division knocking out Dejan Zlaticanin, 22-0, in 3 rounds at MGM Grand, Las Vegas, NV. He made one defense.
Garcia was 29 when he won his fourth world title at Super Lightweight Diamond defeating Adrien Broner, 33-2, over 12 rounds at the Barclay Center, Brooklyn, NY.
Garcia was 30 when he won the world Super Lightweight division defeating Sergey Lipinets, 13-0, over 12 rounds at Freedom Coliseum in San Antonio, TX.
Armstrong, of L.A., CA, ended up with a 152-21 (9), record over a 13+ year span. Garcia of L.A., CA, has a 38-0 (30) record over a 12 year span.
Showtime Boxing Preview: Ortiz vs. Cojanu, Garcia vs. Easter
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Showtime will broadcast three bouts live from the Staples Center in Los Angeles, California. This fight card will be presented by Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions.
The main event of the night will be between Mikey Garcia and Robert Easter Jr. in a WBC/IBF Lightweight Title Unification Bout. The co-main event of the night will feature the return of heavyweight contender Luis Ortiz as he takes on Razvan Cojanu.
Other boxers on the undercard include Mario Barrios, Jose Roman, Roberto Marroquin, and other prized prospects. The Barrios vs. Roman fight looks likely to be broadcast on Showtime in addition to the Easter-Garcia and Ortiz-Cojanu bout.
The following is a preview of the co-main event and main event of the evening.
Photo Credit: Premier Boxing Champions Twitter Account
Luis Ortiz (28-1) vs. Razvan Cojanu (16-3); Heavyweights
Luis “King Kong” Ortiz fought a hard battle against Deontay Wilder in his last match but eventually succumbed to Wilder’s power.
He returns on Saturday against Razvan Coajnu, a three loss Romanian heavyweight that should be viewed as a comeback opponent that stands little chance of winning.
Cojanu will have a rather large five and a half inch height advantage, but will still be giving up about three inches in reach. Ortiz is eight years older than Cojanu.
Ortiz has a strong edge in amateur experience. Cojanu has no notable amateur accomplishments while Ortiz was a multi time National Champion in boxing mad Cuba as an amateur.
Ortiz’s age and recent inactivity could be a factor. He only fought once in 2018 and once in 2017 and is pushing 40. Cojanu fought once in 2017 and three times in 2016, but it should be noted that two of his past three wins were against opponents with losing records.
Ortiz has beaten the likes of Malik Scott, Tony Thompson, Bryant Jennings, and Monte Barrett. His lone loss was to Deontay Wilder.
Cojanu doesn’t have any big wins on his resume, but his best wins have come against Zhiyu Wu, Ed Fountain, and Manuel Alberto Pucheta. His losses were to Alvaro Morales, Joseph Parker, and Donovan Dennis.
This fight will likely not be competitive. Ortiz should stop Cojanu within the first six rounds.
Mikey Garcia (38-0) vs. Robert Easter Jr. (21-0); WBC/IBF Lightweight Titles
Mikey Garcia is considered by many to be one of boxing’s best pound for pound fighters. He’s held world titles in four different weight classes spanning from featherweight to the junior welterweight divisions.
Garcia is facing a fellow undefeated fighter in Robert Easter Jr. Garcia is only thirty so he’s still in his athletic prime, but Easter is three years his younger and will have a large four inch height advantage and an even larger seven inch reach advantage.
Garcia does have an edge in power. He has thirty stoppage victories on his resume while Garcia only has fourteen. Garcia has stopped two of his past five opponents while Easter has stopped one of his past five opponents.
Easter had a close win against Javier Fortuna in his last bout. He has also defeated the likes of Denis Shafikov, Luis Cruz, Richard Commey, and Argenis Mendez.
Garcia has enver tasted defeat and has beaten the likes of Sergey Lipinets, Adrien Broner, Dejan Zlaticanin, Juan Carlos Brugos, Roman Martinez, Juan Manuel Lopez, and Orlando Salido.
Garcia did have an extended break from boxing from January of 2014 to July of 2016 while he was working out promotional issues, but has been fairly active since then.
Both boxers enjoyed moderate success as amateurs in the national scene. Garcia was a Bronze Medalist in the National Golden Gloves while Easter was a US Olympic Team Alternate.
Technically, Garcia is one of the best in the sport. The height and reach of Easter should give Garcia problems early on, but Easter doesn’t have enough power for Garcia to worried about trying to force his way on the inside.
The opening few rounds should be close, but Garcia should be settled and win a comfortable decision victory when the final bell rings.
Mikey Garcia Becomes Four Division Champion in a War with Lipinets
By: Bryant Romero
Mikey Garcia made history Saturday night by becoming just the third fighter in boxing history to win world titles from featherweight through Jr. welterweight becoming a four division champion with a unanimous decision win over Sergey Lipinets ( 13-1, 10 KOs) in a very competitive good fight between two undefeated world champions. Garica (38-0, 30 KOs) showed tremendous toughness, good whiskers, and good accurate punching as he was in very tough tonight in San Antonio, Texas against a young, strong, and very hungry determined world champion in Sergey Lipinets.
The 30-year-old Garcia started the fight very well using his precision and accurate punching from a distance to catch Lipinets with the cleaner more effective shots. Lipinets was not discouraged and was never broken by Mikey as the Kazakhstan fighter showed many wrinkles in his game throughout the contest. Lipinets showed a very accurate jab that would bloody the nose of Mikey Garcia early in the fight. The 28-year-old began to gain momentum in the middle rounds as he was constantly backing Garcia up and landing very good power punches that would get the attention of Mikey Garcia.
Garcia however, stayed composed and showed a very strong chin as he was getting tagged with some big shots from Lipinets in many of the rounds. In round 7, Garcia would have the biggest moment in the fight by dropping Lipinets with a counter left hook and halting some of the momentum Lipinets was gaining in the middle rounds of the bout.
Garcia displayed more punching power in this fight compared to his debut at the weight class against Adrein Broner. Garcia’s accurate counter shots definitely got the attention of Lipinets as the two warriors traded big shots in the championship rounds with both fighters closing the fight very strong in the 12th stanza. Many of the rounds were competitive but it was Garcia that was awarded a comfortable unanimous decision win. Mikey will now move on to bigger and better things as he will have many options to take for his next fight whether it’s returning lightweight division to defend his title or continue to campaign in the super lightweight division.
On the undercard, Kiryl Relikh (22-2, 19 KOs) avenged his defeat to Rances Barthlemy (26-1, 13 KOs) last May with a clear unanimous decision win and winning the vacant WBA Jr. Welterweight strap. Relikh would not be denied as he simply outpunched and outworked Barthelmy throughout the bout as the 31-year-old Cuban was unable to match the pace of Relikh. Relikh becomes just the third fighter from Belarus to win a world title.
Showtime Boxing Results: Mikey Garcia Defeats Sergey “Samurai” Lipinets for IBF title
By: Ken Hissner
Tom Brown’s TGB Promotions and Showtime featured 3-division world champion Mikey Garcia winning his fourth division title defeating IBF World Super Lightweight Champion Sergey “Samurai” Lipinets in the main event. The event was held at the Freeman Coliseum in San Antonio, TX, Saturday night.
Photo Credit: Showtime Boxing Twitter Account
IBF World Super Lightweight Champion Sergey “Samurai” Lipinets, 13-1 (10), of KAZ, and Beverly Hills, CA, lost his title to the former WBO Featherweight, Super Featherweight and WBC Lightweight Champion Mikey Garcia, 38-0 (30), of Moreno Valley, CA, over 12 rounds.
In the first round almost a minute went by with little connecting. There were mostly jabs by both boxers with Garcia landing a couple of combinations. In the second round Lipinets does a lot of feinting and using the jab. Garcia landed several chopping rights to the head. With a minute left in the round Garcia rocked Lipinets with a right to the chin. Garcia had a bloody nose.
In the third round Lipinets opened up rocking Garcia who came right back with combinations. Lipinets kept his left hand low while Garcia had his up high. In the fourth round Lipinets landed an overhand right to the head. Referee Lawrence Cole warned Lipinets for a low blow. Garcia landed a lead right to the chin.
In the fifth round Garcia landed a triple left hook. Midway Lipinets landed several left hooks to the head. Garcia countered well. Lipinets ducked into a Garcia left hook. In the sixth round Garcia used his jab well. Lipinets landed a straight right. Garcia came back with a solid right to the head. Garcia landed a combination but got countered by a Lipinets left hook to the chin.
In the seventh round Garcia landed a chopping right and got countered by a right. A counter left hook by Garcia dropped Lipinets at the midway point of the round. Lipinets was up at eight and cut on the left eye brow. In the eighth round Garcia landed a lead right to the head. Lipinets drove Garcia against the ropes with a flurry of punches. Garcia landed a hard right to the chin just prior to the bell.
In the ninth round Garcia boxed well for the first half of the round. Lipinets landed a right followed by a left hook driving Garcia back a few steps. In the tenth round Lipinets kept the pressure on Garcia. At the midway point Garcia rocked Lipinets with a lead right to the chin. Lipinets missed a right and was countered by a Garcia left hook. Garcia ended the round with a right cross to the head of Lipinets.
In the eleventh round Lipinets landed a hard left hook to the head of Garcia. Lipinets came back with a combination to the head. Garcia landed several lead right hands to the head. Both boxers landed left hooks to the head. In the twelfth and final round Lipinets was looking for a knockout seemingly behind. Lipinets landed a solid left hook to the chin. Both fighters left it out in the final minute of the fight.
Judges scores Mark Calo-Dy 116-111 and Julie Lederman and Nelson Vasquez 117-110. This writer had it 116-111.
“I want to thank the beautiful fans in San Antonio for their support. He was very strong and prepared. There were moments I felt I may have hurt him but didn’t want to chance getting hit with an overhand right. I would like to go back to lightweight and unify and back to super lightweight and unify,” said Garcia. “I thought his experience won him the fight,” said Lipinets.
In a rematch the former IBF World Featherweight and IBF World Super Lightweight Champion Cuban Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy, 26-1 (13), of Las Vegas, NV, lost in a lopsided decision to the new champion Kiryl “Mad Bee” Relikh, 22-2 (19), of Minsk, Belarus, for the vacant WBA World Super Lightweight title.
In the first round Barthelemy with hands held high kept moving as Relikh chased. Relikh landed combinations when he was able to catch up with Barthelemy. Barthelemy ended the round with a pair of body shots. In the second round Relikh had Barthelemy on the ropes landing have a dozen unanswered punches.
In the third round Relikh landed more than half a dozen punches keeping Barthelemy on the ropes. Barthelemy landed a combination to the head of Relikh while in the middle of the ring. Relikh landed the best punch of the round a solid right to the head of Barthelemy. In the fourth round Barthelemy stayed in the middle of the ring quite a bit and got out punched when he did. Not much jabbing in the fight as both fighters are head hunting.
In the fifth round Barthelemy was warned about a low blow by referee Luis Pabon. Relikh got through the defense of Barthelemy with uppercuts and straight punches. In the sixth round Barthelemy landed a left hook to the head but got countered by Relikh with his left hook. Barthelemy forced by holding Relikh to go backwards into the ropes and to the canvas. Relikh continued to outwork Barthelemy.
In the seventh round for the third time in the fight Barthelemy warned for low blow and deducted a point. That didn’t stop Relikh from out landing him. In the eighth round Barthelemy landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Relikh. Relikh used a jab and left hooks with chopping right hands to body and head of Barthelemy.
In the ninth round Barthelemy fights in spurts while Relikh lands heavy handed punches. Barthelemy “shoe shines” at the end of the round trying to steal the round in the judge’s eyes. In the tenth round Relikh continued out working Barthelemy. Half way through the round both fighters were throwing punches at each other to the first delight of the fans. What may have looked like a good body punch by Barthelemy was low. A left hook by Relikh to the head of Barthelemy was countered with a flurry of punches.
In the eleventh round only in spurts does Barthelemy land left hooks to the body of Relikh. Barthelemy’s style is not entertaining to the fans and shouldn’t be to the judges. In the twelfth and final round Barthelemy switches from orthodox to southpaw and back. Relikh landed a double left hook to the body. Barthelemy comes forward but not throwing many punches as Relikh countered well. With five seconds to go once again Barthelemy lands a low blow and loses another point. It looked like a shut out for Relikh but since their first fight did and he lost you never know with judges.
Judge Palacano 118-109 Judge Ramos Judge Montoya. This writer had it 120-107.
“The difference this time was I did it with my new trainer. I am very happy and dreamed of this and now it is done,” said Relikh.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Garcia, WBSS, Hernandez, Carto, Beltran, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of January 16th to January 23rd; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Mikey Garcia vs. Sergey Lipinets Rescheduled for March 10th
The highly anticipated showdown between undefeated three-division world champion Mikey Garcia and IBF 140-pound champion Sergey Lipinets has been rescheduled for Saturday, March 10th. The Premier Boxing Champions event was set to take place on February 10th, but Garcia’s quest for a fourth world title had to be rescheduled following a training injury to Lipinets’ hand. The fight will be live on SHOWTIME and will remain in San Antonio but move to the Freeman Coliseum.
Ticket information will be released early next week. Those holding tickets for the original date at the Alamodome will receive priority on seat exchange for the new venue. Tickets are priced at $250, $150, $75, $50 and $20 and will be available at Ticketmaster.com or by calling 210 556-6390. The event is promoted by Ringstar Sports and TGB Promotions, in association with Leija-Battah Promotions.
The remainder of the card will remain the same including the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING co-feature, which will see two-division world champion Rances Barthelemy taking on Kiryl Relikh in a rematch of their thrilling fight last May, this time for the vacant WBA 140-pound world title. The doubleheader of title bouts in the wide-open 140-pound division sets the stage for a potential unification match.
The 29-year-old Garcia (37-0, 30 KOs), emphatically returned to pound-for-pound lists in 2017 by scoring a highlight reel knockout of Dejan Zlaticanin to win the WBC Lightweight World Championship in January and then dominating four-division champion Adrien Broner on his way to a unanimous decision in July. Garcia is a member of a renowned boxing family, and is noted for his sportsmanship and his commanding presence in the ring, honed by his brother and acclaimed trainer Robert Garcia.
Garcia, of Moreno Valley by way of Oxnard, Calif., returned to the ring after a two-and-half-year layoff in July 2016 without missing a beat by stopping former champion Elio Rojas. Garcia, who has held world titles at 126, 130 and 135 pounds, has stopped 19 of his last 22 opponents including Roman “Rocky” Martinez, Juan Manuel Lopez and Orlando Salido.
With a win, Garcia would become only the third fighter in modern history to become champion at 126, 130, 135 and 140-pounds, joining future Hall of Famers Juan Manuel Marquez and Manny Pacquiao*.
The unbeaten Lipinets (13-0, 10 KOs) captured a super lightweight world title in just his 13th pro fight by defeating Akihiro Kondo via a unanimous decision on November 4 on SHOWTIME. He is originally from Kazakhstan but moved to Russia when he was six years old. He currently lives in Beverly Hills, California, Lipinets and is trained by Buddy McGirt.
Nico Hernandez to Fight on February 10th
2016 Olympic bronze medalist and hometown hero Nico Hernandez has fully recovered from an injury that postponed his December 2nd fight to Saturdeay, February 10, versus Hungarian champion Jozsef “Little Red” Ajtai in the the eight-round main event for the vacant International Boxing Association (IBA) Americas flyweight title, headlining the “KO Night Boxing: Gold & Glory” card, at Hartman Arena in Park City, Kansas.
“KO Night Boxing: Gold & Glory” is a presentation of KO Night Boxing LLC., in association with Hartman Arena, and sponsored in part by Park City (KS), Twister City Harley-Davidson and Metro PCS.
The action will be taped live for future airing on CBS Sports Network.
The 22-year-old Hernandez (3-0, 2 KOs), fighting out of Wichita, suffered an undisclosed injury that forced him to withdraw from the Dec. 2nd fight. Neither Hernandez nor his promoter, John Andersen (KO Night Boxing, LLC), have revealed any details about Nico’s injury to avoid giving his opponent any possible advantage to target in the ring.
“I feel good, ready to fight,” Hernandez commented. “We wanted to make sure that I was injury free and I am 100-percent. I’m going to do whatever is needed to win this fight. Fighting for my first title means a lot to me. I didn’t think it would happen this fast. I want everybody to see that I can be competitive with the best in my division. A win February 10th will get me there a lot closer.
“My opponent like to runs a lot and he’s quick, so I need to have my legs under me. Other than that, though, I should be okay. He has fought some good guys. I can’t wait to get in the ring in front of my fans.”
Ajtai (19-9, 12 KOs), who is one year and six days younger than Hernandez, has already fought in five title fights. He also went the full 10-round distance, albeit in a loss by decision in 2016, to two-time Olympic gold medalist Shiming Zou, the former World Boxing Organization (WBO) flyweight world champion. Fighting in his opponent’s hometown isn’t a problem for Ajtai, who has vast road experience having fought as a pro in the USA, United Kingdom, Spain, Germany, Ukraine and Slovakia.
“Nico will not know where I will be in the ring,” Ajtai predicted. “When he looks to the left for me, I will go to the right; when he tries to find me on the right, I will be on the left. When he wants to rest, I will come forward punching; when he wants to punch, he won’t find me.
“I have a plan for this fight and I’m sure he does as well. But, in the ring, only one fighter’s plan can succeed. It’s going to be a good fight, but I can’t promise the public that Nico will be the winner.”
“I’m excited that Nico is 100-percent healthy for this fight,” Andersen said. “We couldn’t be happier to bring this great fight, and many more as we move forward, to the great city of Wichita.”
In the six-round co-featured event, Minneapolis welterweight Javonte Starks (13-2, 7 KOs), a former Future Stars National Champion as an amateur, takes on veteran Mexican fighter Cesar Soriano (28-36-1, 17 KOs), the former FECARBOX lightweight titlist.
Tickets for Beltran-Moses Are on Sale
World championship boxing returns the “Biggest Little City in the World,” Reno Nevada! No. 1 world-rated lightweight contender RAY “Sugar” BELTRAN, fighting for his first world championship belt and his green card to stay in the U.S. with his family, will headline an all-action card on Friday, February 16, in the Grand Sierra Resort’s Grand Theatre. Beltran (34-7-1, 21 KOs), from Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico, will be battling former world champion and current No. 2 world-rated contender PAULUS MOSES (39-3, 24 KOs), from Windhoek, Namibia, for the vacant World Boxing Organization (WBO) lightweight world title. The co-main event will feature undefeated NABF welterweight champion EGIDIJUS “The Mean Machine” KAVALIAUSKAS (18-0, 15 KOs), from Oxnard, Calif., by way of Kaunas, Lithuania, defending his title against former world champion DAVID “Ava” AVANESYAN (23-2-1, 11 KOs), of Pyatigorsk, Russia, in a 10-round battle of Top-10 world-rated contenders. Both title fights will be televised live and exclusively at 9 p.m. EST on ESPN and ESPN Deportes and stream live on the ESPN App at 7 p.m. EST. The championship event will also feature the return of 2016 Olympic silver medalist SHAKUR STEVENSON (4-0, 2 KOs), of Newark, NJ. Stevenson has a unique relationship with Reno, where he began each year from 2013 through 2015 by winning a national amateur title. Additionally, he won the gold medal and Outstanding Boxer award at the 2016 Olympic Trials. Stevenson has never lost in Reno
Two-time world heavyweight championship challenger and current Top-10 world- rated contender BRYANT JENNINGS (21-2, 12 KOs), of Philadelphia, PA, will also be featured on the undercard, in an eight-round bout. Jennings, who is a vegan, appears in “The Game Changers,” a documentary directed by Louie Psihoyos, the Oscar®-winning director of “The Cove.” “The Game Changers” tells the story of James Wilks — elite special forces trainer and winner of The Ultimate Fighter — as he travels the world on a quest for the truth behind the world’s most dangerous myth: that meat is necessary for protein, strength and optimal health. It premiered last week at the Sundance Film Festival.
Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Let’s Get It On Promotions, tickets to the Beltran-Moses world championship event will go on sale Tomorrow! Wednesday, January 24, at 1 p.m. EST / 10 a.m. PST. Priced at $79, $54, and $29, including facility fees, tickets may be purchased online at www.grandsierra.com, at the Grand Theater Box Office, 9 a.m. to 9 p.m. PT, daily, or charge by phone at 1-775-789-1115.
“There isn’t a more inspiring story in boxing than Ray Beltran’s,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “It hasn’t been an easy road for Ray, but he has more than met the challenge time and time again. I can’t think of a better way to start Ray’s 2018 season than with this tremendous world championship fight. I am also looking forward to seeing the welterweight battle between Egidijus Kavaliauskas and David Avanesyan which should be nothing but fireworks. And no one lights up a night better than Shakur Stevenson, with his fast hands and bright smile.”
“I’m excited about this fight for many reasons. I’m fighting for myself, for my eighteen years I have worked to become a world champion, I am fighting for my family, my wife, and for my children to be proud of me,” said Beltran. “When you’re a champion, you are a champion forever. I am fighting for my team, the people who have been with me from the start. It’s easy when you are on your way up to have fans, but my true fans have been with me at my lowest, and stayed through my highs in life. This fight means everything to me, a victory will also seal my green card. For me to be world champion, and a citizen of this country, this is my dream. I respect my opponents always, but this is my destiny, and no man will get in the way of that. I’m ready to prove to everyone that I am the most dangerous lightweight in the world. I’m coming February 16th to take what was mine in Scotland, and when I leave Reno I am leaving as the WBO world champion.”
“I would like to thank God for this amazing opportunity. I have had a blessed boxing career and all thanks to everybody who supported me over the years. Thanks to my Promoter and mentor Nestor Tobias and to an amazing forward looking visionary sponsor in MTC who continues to push us to become only the best,” said Moses. “It’s been an incredibly positive week. I am honoured to have recently been inducted as a MTC Sports Legend, the highest sports honour in Namibia and now an amazing opportunity to fight Beltran who I highly regard, and of course an opportunity for me to become world champion again. I look forward to this fight and doing my country proud once again.”
“I don’t remember much about Avanesyan when we were in the amateurs. But he will, for sure, be my toughest opponent in the ring,” said Kavaliauskas. “I am very excited to show the best of me in this fight. Thank you, Top Rank and ESPN for giving me this opportunity — one step closer to getting a world title belt.”
“I am so glad and proud for the Mean Machine to climb to a new level. Thank you, Top Rank for giving the Machine an opportunity to make his debut on ESPN,” said Egis Klimas, who manages Kavaliauskas.
“This is a great opportunity for me to return to the top of the welterweight division,” said Avanesyan. “My trainer and I are working very hard on my conditioning, strength and strategy because we know what is at stake and we know Egidijus brings to the fight. And make no mistake, this is a fight.”
“I’m ready to kick off 2018 in my first eight-round fight. I’ve been wanting to go eight rounds for awhile now and I’m excited to finally get the opportunity in my first fight of the year.” said Stevenson. “I’m undefeated in Reno and won four national titles there in the amateurs, including the 2016 Olympic Trials, so I plan to keep that streak going on February 16.”
“Grand Sierra Resort is thrilled to host this exciting championship fight card and generate national TV exposure for the Reno-Tahoe region,” Christopher Abraham, VP of Marketing at Grand Sierra Resort said. “We are thrilled to work with such outstanding partners as Top Rank, ESPN and Let’s Get It On Promotions.”
Beltran, a native of Mexico who resides in Phoenix, AZ., enters this fight having won four of his last fights by knockout. A three-time lightweight world title challenger and a former sparring partner of eight-division world champion Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao, Beltran still trains at Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif. Beltran is fighting for more than just a world title. He is fighting to obtain his green card so that he can remain in the U.S. with his family under the Extraordinary Ability as a Professional Boxing (EB-1) Employment-Based First Preference category.. A world title victory will all but assure him of his permanent status. Recent career highlights include one-punch knockout victories over Mason Menard (32-1, 24 KOs) and Jonathan Maicelo (32-1, 24 KOs) on December 10, 2016 and May 20, 2017, respectively. In his most recent fight, Beltran solidified his upcoming world title shot by winning a gritty majority decision over former two-time interim World Boxing Association (WBA) super featherweight world champion Bryan Vasquez (36-2, 19 KOs), on August 5. Vasquez was world-rated No. 1 by the WBA when they fought. Beltran is currently world-rated No. 1 by the WBO and the World Boxing Council (WBC).
Moses captured the WBA world lightweight title in 2009, traveling to Yokohama, Japan to defeat defending champion and hometown favorite Yusuke Kobori via a unanimous decision. After one successful title defense — another unanimous decision victory, this time over Takehiro Shimada, Moses’ 15-monthn reign as world champion ended in 2010 at the hands of Miguel Acosta. Since losing a unanimous decision to Ricky Burns in their 2012 WBO lightweight world championship fight, Moses has strung together an impressive record of 11-1, 1 NC, including TKO victories over Cosmas Cheka and Crispin Moliati in his last two fights and a two-year reign as WBO International lightweight champion and his current 14-month reign as WBO Africa lightweight champion. Moses, a veteran who has fought professionally in Asia, Europe and Africa, will be making his North America debut.
World Boxing Super Series Semi-Finals Schedule
Super Channel, the No. 1 destination network for Canadian boxing fans, will air the upcoming semifinals of the popular World Boxing Super Series (WBSS) tournament, featuring world-class cruiserweight and super middleweight divisions action, live from various venues in Europe.
Super Channel acquired exclusive rights in Canada to air the entire WBSS tournament from MP & Silva, a leading international media company that provides media rights, digital, technology and sponsorship services.
“We are thrilled that the WBSS is returning to Super Channel for exclusive Canadian coverage of the highly anticipated semifinals,” said Troy Wassill, Director of Programming, Domestic Distributors and Sports. “I have no doubt that every single bout is going to deliver exciting, must-see action for boxing fans, as these world-class fighters compete to see who is going to go head-to-head for the coveted Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
WBSSis a revolutionary bracket-style elimination tournament featuring the world’s best boxers and a total of $50 million in prize money. The knockout format of the competition will see the best boxers ultimately compete for the Muhammad Ali Trophy, the greatest prize in boxing. The tournament is organized by newly-founded Comosa AG, a Swiss-registered company with principal owners Highlight Event & Entertainment, Modern Times Group and Team Sauerland. Comosa AG is working in partnership with boxers, promoters and managers around the world, and in alignment with the four major world boxing federations, to create a new global platform for the sport.
The first of its kind tournament, which is planned to take place on an annual basis, kicked off this past September with quarterfinals competition in two divisions, cruiserweight and super middleweight. An expert panel invited the world’s best boxers to compete, namely the top 15-ranked fighters of the four major federations: WBA, WBC, IBF and WBO. The winners of the two semifinals will advance to the championship round in both divisions this May.
Below find the WBSS semifinals schedule and a preview of the four matches and eight fighters who survived the quarterfinals:
January 27, Riga Arena, Riga, Latvia – WBO/WBC Unification
Oleksandr “The Cat” Usyk (13-0, 11 KOs), WBO World Champion, Ukraine – Ring #1 vs. Mairis Briedis (23-0, 18 KOs), WBC World Champion, Latvia – Ring #3
February 3, Bolshoy Ice Dome, Sochi, Russia – IBF/WBA Unification
Murat “Iron” Gassiev (25-0, 18 KOs), IBF World Champion, Russia – Ring #2 vs. Yunier “The KO Doctor” Dorticos (21-0, 20 KOs), WBA World Champion, Cuba – Ring #5
February 17, Manchester, Arena, Manchester, UK – WBA/IBO Unification
“Saint” George Groves (27-3, 20 KOs), WBA World Champion, United Kingdom – Ring #2 vs. Chris “Next Gen” Eubank Jr. (26-1, 20 KOs), IBO World Champion, United Kingdom – Ring #4
February 24, Arena Nurnberger Versicherung, Nuremburg, Germany
Juergen Braehmer (49-3 35 KOs), Germany – Ring #10 (Former WBO & WBA Light Heavyweight World Champion) vs. Callum “Mundo” Smith (23-0, 17 KOs), United Kingdom – Ring #3 (WBC Diamond Super Middleweight Champion)
Christian Carto to Face James Smith on March 2nd
Popular and undefeated bantamweight Christian Carto will headline a packed night of boxing when he takes on James Smith in an eight-round bout on Friday, March 2nd at The SugarHouse Casino in Philadelphia.
The card is promoted by King’s Promotions.
Carto of Philadelphia has a record of 13-0 with 11 knockouts. The 21 year-old has established himself as one of the top prospects in Philadelphia, and the popular Carto continues to draw large and enthusiastic crowds to his fights.
Carto, who had a very active 2017 as he mustered seven victories and has a signature win over Alonso Melendez (14-1). Carto is coming off an eight-round unanimous decision over Luis Fernando Saavedra on December 1st at The SugarHouse Casino.
This will be Carto’s 7th appearance at The SugarHouse Casino.
Smith of Detroit has a record of 12-1 with seven knockouts.
The 27 year-old is a seven-year professional, who won his first 11 bouts, which was highlighted by a win over Olimjon Nazarov (14-2).
After suffering his lone defeat, Smith won his last bout as he stopped Yaqub Kareem on August 4, 2017 in Detroit.
In an eight-round all-Philadelphia super middleweight bout, Christopher Brooker (12-5, 5 KOs) battle Jamaal Davis (16-12-1, 7 KOs).
In an eight-round bout, Tyrone Crawley, Jr. (7-0) of Philadelphia takes on Anthony Mercado (10-3, 9 KOs) of Arecibo, PR in a super lightweight bout.
David Gonzales (8-2-2, 2 KOs) of Philadelphia will fight Victor Vazquez (9-3, 3 KOs) of Yonkers, NY in a super lightweight contest.
Undefeated Marcus Bates (8-0-1, 6 KOs) of Washington, DC will take on an opponent to be named in a eight-round super bantamweight fight.
Carlos Rosario (7-3, 4 KOs) of Pennsauken, NJ will square off with Seifullah Wise (3-4, 1 KO) of Philadelphia in a super featherweight fight.
Darius Ervin (4-1) of Los Angeles tangles with Jesus Perez (3-0, 1 KO) of Reading, PA in a super lightweight fight.
Jerrod Miner (1-1, 1 KO) of Philadelphia fights Rondarrius Hunter (1-2, 1 KO) of Atlanta in a four-round super flyweight bout.
Tickets are on sale for $100, $75, $50, and can be purchased at SugarHouseBoxing.eventbrite. com.
What Happened To Adrien Broner?
By: Sean Crose
He seemed on top of the world once, not so long ago, a terrible representative or the sport who was on his way to stardom, nonetheless.
And now this.
After being dominated this past weekend in New York by Mikey Garcia, many are left asking what happened to Adrien Broner. This was the future celebrity, the Mayweather with a bad/worse attitude, the soon to be face of boxing. Now, though, it’s clear the man can’t beat an above average opponent. All that talk, all that hype, and for what? For three losses in a row to big names? For smack talk after defeat? For endless acts of stupidity outside the ring with little to show in the way of real merit inside of it? This isn’t what the public was led to expect.
Oh, the public was led to expect bad behavior when it came to Broner, of course. In fact, the public was expected to celebrate it. For Broner was supposed to be the big mouth who couldn’t be shut up, the man who appealed to people’s inner mean streaks, the guy who acted like many amoral types wished they could have, but were afraid to. Yet the public was also led to expect Broner to back it all up with big win after big win. Thing is, with the possible exception of Paulie Malignaggi, who some feel actually won their fight, Broner has no big wins to his name.
What he has is a record of having attained lots of belts without placing lots of big names under them. It’s now being said the man was a hype job from the word go. Perhaps that assertion is the correct one. Perhaps Broner was never as good as advertised. Perhaps he was simply never going to become as good as advertised, even if he took his profession seriously, which – until recently – he didn’t seem to on any sort of regular basis.
The question, of course, is where to from here for the Cincinnati native. Many, if not most, hope he will fade away. Don’t expect him do, though. Broner’s colorful image is still marketable, even on a smaller scale than it used to be. There’s still titles and lots of money available for the man in the future. Keep in mind that he’s fun to watch fight – and that people also like renegades (and Broner is most certainly that).
The truth is that Broner took a tough loss and if he’s not the total hype job some are saying he always was, he’s going to want to grow as a fighter – as in actually pick up new things. That might take a bit of learning, but he’s still a young man with a considerable amount of God given talent at his disposal. The story of Adrien Broner might still have some more chapters to go. He’s going to have to play is smart, though, if he hopes to eventually go out on top…if it’s even possible for him to go out on top at this point.
Mikey Garcia Easily Defeats Adrien Broner to Stay Unbeaten
By: Ken Hissner
At the Barclay Center in Brooklyn, NY, Mayweather Promotions, PBC and DiBella Entertainment promoted before 12,000 fans over Showtime Saturday night.
The 3 division champion and current WBC lightweight champion Mikey Garcia, 37-0 (30), of Moreno Valley, out of Oxnard, CA, easily defeated former 3 division champion of the world and No. 2 WBA welterweight Adrien “The Problem” Broner, 33-3 (24), of Cinn., OH, over 12 rounds.
In the opening round it took the aggressor Garcia close to a minute to land his first punch, a jab. Up until then it was Broner’s jab controlling. A Garcia lead right had Broner nailed on the chin. Later a left hook body shot by Garcia had Broner against the ropes. In the second round it was all Garcia. When Broner tried to tie him up Garcia pushed him back. Garcia got in several right hands to the body of Broner. In the third round like the first it was Broner’s jab for almost a minute before Garcia landed a counter left hook punch. At the halfway mark of the round Garcia landed a solid left hook to the body. With half a minute left in the round Garcia opened up with a flurry of punches ending with a right uppercut to the chin of Broner. In the fourth round Broner stayed in the pocket for the first time halfway through the round but did little as Garcia landed a flurry of punches twice in the second half of the round with the right uppercut to the chin of Broner at the end of the flurries.
In the fifth round Broner with hands held up right trying to stop the jab and lead right of Garcia but with little success to stop them. With 30 seconds to go in the round Garcia landed a solid left hook to the landed a combination. In the sixth round Garcia continued to pound Broner until a little than a minute left in he round before Broner landed a 3-punch combination to the head of Garcia. The round ended with a lead right from Garcia to the body of Broner. Broner’s corner is Around Broner came out strong for half a minute before dancing around throwing a weak jab as Garcia is all over him. With a minute left in the round Garcia lands punch after punch keeping Broner at bay. Just prior to the bell Garcia landed five unanswered punches with a right to the jaw among them rocked Broner. In the eighth round after a minute Garcia drops his hands challenging Broner to fight back. Garcia landed a dozen punches without return from Broner who landed a chopping right to the head. Broner came forward at the bell trying to steal the round but was stopped in his tracks by a Garcia hard jab. It was a big round once again by Garcia.
In the ninth round a right cross from Garcia grazed the jaw of Broner after the first minute of the round. Garcia keeps pressing Broner easily out landed Broner. Inside of a minute left in the round Broner landed several beltline or lower punched keeping Garcia on the defense. This may have been Broner’s best round since the first round. In the tenth round with Broner coming forward Garcia countered well. At the minute mark to go in the round Broner landed the best punch of the fight for him a left hook to the head of Garcia putting him back a step or two. Garcia finished strong with a combination at the bell. In the eleventh round Broner well behind in the fight was looking for a big punch but was taking a two-handed attack from Garcia. It was another big round for Garcia as both Garcia counters well as Broner keeps coming forward but landing little. A Broner body shot got Garcia’s attention as he came right back landing punch after punch. Garcia finished up as strong as he was in the first round. The referee was Harvey Dock.
Judges Weisfeld and Don Akerman had it 116-112 while Eric Marlinski had it 117-111 and this writer had it 119-109.
“I will stay at 140 but may move up to 147 in the future,” said Garcia. Broner was very bitter though omitting Garcia beat him. Using a couple of foul words as the crowd boo’d him Broner did little to convince anyone he will be back at the championship level as he was boasting. It was a superb performance by Garcia who is trained by his brother Robert Garcia.
In a WBC middleweight elimination bout IBF Super welterweight champion Jermall Charlo, 26-0 (20), of Houston, TX, stopped No. 1 WBC contender, southpaw middleweight Jorge Sebastian “El Gaucho de Pigue” Heiland, 29-5-2 (16), of Bueno Aires, ARG, at 2:13 of the fourth round.
Prior to the start of the fight the Boxing Commissioner made Heiland take off a wrapping around his left leg. In the opening round Charlo kept his jab in the face of Heiland throughout the round. It took Heiland half a round to land a punch though he was the aggressor. How he ever got to be the No. 1 contender must have been “paid for” as he plug’s along. In the second round with Charlo now the aggressor dropped Heiland at the halfway mark of the round with a right uppercut. Referee Benjy Estaves, Jr. administered the 8 count and upon rising made him walk to the left and right. He lasted out the round though a lead right from Charlo rocked him prior to the round ending. The bell sounded to start the round and referee Esteves brought the ring physician in to check the left leg of Heiland. Charlo continued landing the jab followed by lead right hands easily winning the round. Before the third round started the ring physician was brought in again to check Heiland. With one minute left in the round a left hand to the ear dropped Heiland. He got up and looked like a drunken soldier falling back into the ropes forcing the stoppage. This was a mismatch when Heiland signed the contract. He could have had three “good legs” and he was going to be stopped early.
“First I want to thank God for this opportunity along with Showtime and feel I am ready for the best in the middleweight division,” said Charlo.
Heavyweight Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller, 19-0-1 (17), Brooklyn, NY, stopped Gerald “El Gallo Negro” Washington, 18-2-1 (12), of Vallejo, CA, at the end of the eighth round of a scheduled 10.
Miller landed four right hands and had Washington out on his feet forcing referee Gary Rosato to call a halt.
“I want to thank God for the victory. I’m surprised they took this fight. I lost 40 pounds (came in at 298) for this fight. I want to be another American world heavyweight champion,” said Miller. He is No. 7 in the WBO, WBA and IBF while Washington was No. 15 in the WBC.
For Olympian southpaw Rau’sheen Warren, 15-2 (4), of Cinn., OH, bounced back after losing his WBA Super World bantamweight title earlier this year with a win in a super bantamweight bout over McJoe Arroyo, 17-2 (8), of Fajardo, PR, who lost his IBF Super World Flyweight title last year losing over 12 rounds by scores of 118-110 and 117-111 twice.
Showtime Boxing Results: Garcia Dominates Broner, Wins UD After 12
By: Sean Crose
The first fight that aired on Showtime Saturday night from Brooklyn’s Barclay’s Center featured rising star Jemall Charlo, a 25-0 first time middleweight, facing off against Jorge Sebastian Heiland a 29-4-2 Argentine who had previously defeated the likes of Austin Trout and Cornelius Bundridge. It was all Charlo, right from the beginning. He dominated the first, dropped Heiland in the second and then cruised through the third. Heiland, who had clearly hurt his leg, was taken out his misery by the referee in round four. Charlo is clearly looking for bigger things and made it obvious he’s ready to take on Gennady Golovkin, should the Kazakh terror best Mexican star Canelo Alvarez when the two meet in a September superfight.
Photo Credit: Showtime Boxing
It was time for the main event. Adrien Broner was looking at what may well have been his last chance at superstardom by stepping into the ring with lightweight titlist Mikey Garcia, who was making his junior welterweight debut. As for Garcia – this was his time to truly step into the stoplight. Garcia entered the ring looking supremely confident. Broner came in looking relaxed and healthy. It remained to be seen how good the fight would be – but on paper it was some kind of matchup.
And indeed, it was a decent enough fight. It was one sided, though. In fact, it was clear at the end of twelve rounds that Garcia had clearly beaten his man up. Broner had his moments, of course, but there just weren’t enough. Indeed, the one-two combinations Garcia pierced Broner’s guard with told the tale of the night. Those and the thudding body shots Garcia regularly landed to Broner’s body. The judges didn’t even manage to screw up this time…Garcia won by an easy unanimous decision. Sure enough, Broner clapped in approval of Garcia’s performance after the decision was announced.
“When you get inside the ring with me, you find out my timing’s just a step in front of them,” said Garcia after the bout. The man certainly looked impressive. Strength. Confidence. Relentlessness. Such assets told the tale. As for Broner, the man didn’t look bad. Honestly. This author believes Broner can still be a major force – provided the guy gets a new trainer. Broner is loyal to his team. That’s impressive. But he must move on in order to move on.
“If I fight tomorrow, everyone in this motherfucker will still come to see me,” Broner said after the loss. Maybe that’s true. If the man wants a successful career, however, people are going to have to see him win some major fights.
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Adrien Broner vs. Mikey Garcia, Jermall Charlo vs. Jorge Heiland
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night Showtime and Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) will present one of the best boxing matches during the month of August as Adrien Broner takes on Mikey Garcia in the junior welterweight division. Jermall Charlo will also be making his debut in the middleweight division as he bumps a weight class to take on Jorge Sebastian Heiland.
The undercard is also stacked and featured several entertaining fights and high level prospects. Jarrell Miller will face Gerald Washington in a matchup featuring two top ranked heavyweights. Katie Taylor and Rau’shee Warren are two former Olympians that will also be competing on the undercard.
The following is a preview of the televised portion of the bouts that Showtime will be televising live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.
Jermall Charlo (25-0) vs. Jorge Sebastian Heiland (29-4-2); Middleweights
Jermall Charlo is dropping his junior middleweight title to bump up to his brother’s division and chase a world title there. He’s younger than his brother by one minute but they hope to hold titles in the same division as the same time.
Charlo is twenty seven years old and younger than his Argentinean opponent by three years. He’s from Houston, Texas and has been relatively active in the past two years. He fought twice in 2016 and three times in 2017. He stands at 6’0”, but has a pretty good reach of 73 ½”. Heiland has fought once in 2017, twice in 2016, and once in 2015.
Heiland is a southpaw and has four losses on his record. He doesn’t have the power of Charlo and has stopped sixteen of his opponents. Charlo has stopped nineteen boxers.
Despite his four losses Heiland has been boxing well recently. He is currently riding an 8 win fight streak. Neither boxer has any notable amateur titles.
Charlo’s most impressive victory was in his last bout when he defeated Philadelphia native Julian Williams by knockout. His other notable victories include Austin Trout, Winky Campfort, and Cornelius Bundrage.
Heiland’s only notable victory was a knockout over Matthew Macklin before Macklin retired. He has losses to Mateo Damian Veron, Billi Godoy, Nilson Tapia, and Sebastian Zbik.
Even though Charlo is bumping up a weight division, he’s facing an opponent that is not on his skill level. It’s a good first fight to feel out the middleweight division for Charlo.
Adrien Broner (33-2) vs. Mikey Garcia (36-0); Junior Welterweights
Adrien Broner has been in the news a lot recently, but not for boxing. He’s had a few run ins with the law, including an arrest in April of 2017 when the SUV he was driving was found to have bullet holes in it. Broner claimed at the time that his vehicle was shot at.
Broner is a boxer with amazing talents, but the outside issues could be a distraction and he’s facing an elite level talent.
Broner and Garcia are similar in age, with Broner being 28 years old and Garcia being 29. They are also similar in size and height. They are the same height and stand in at 5’6”. Garcia will have a slight reach advantage of one inch.
Neither boxer has been very active in the past two years fighting under the PBC banner. Broner only fought once in 2017 and 2016, but did fight three times in 2015. Garcia only fought once in 2017 and 2016, and did not fight in 2015 and most of 2014 due to contract issues with Top Rank Promotions.
Broner has defeated the likes of Adrian Granados, Ashley Theophane, Khabib Allakhverdiev, John Molina Jr., Emmanuel Taylor, Carlos Molina, Paulie Malignaggi, Antonio Demarco, Daniel Ponce De Leon, and Eloy Perez. His losses were to Shawn Porter and Marcos Maidana.
Garcia’s inactivity has cost him some possible big name matchups, but he still has a good list of defeated opponents. He has defeated the likes of Dejan Zlaticanin, Elio Rojas, Juan Carlos Burgos, Roman Martinez, Juan Manuel Lopez, Orlando Salido, and Jonathan Victor Barros.
Both boxers experienced some success on the national level as an amateur. Broner as a National Silver Gloves Champion and Garcia was a US Pal Gold Medalist and a US Junior Golden Gloves Gold Medalist.
Garcia’s inactivity and recent wins against subpar competition would normally big a cause of concern when facing a highly skilled opponent like Adrien Broner, but Broner’s recent run ins with the law and his two losses against top level opponents is a bigger concern.
This writer wouldn’t be shocked if Broner emerges victorious, but the edge has to go to Garcia.
Can Mikey Garcia Attain Superstardom?
By: Sean Crose
Admittedly, I’m getting ahead of myself here. Mikey Garcia, who will be entering a junior welterweight fight this weekend, has a huge mountain to climb. For the undefeated Californian’s opponent Saturday night at Brooklyn’s Barclay’s Center will be none other than Adrien “The Problem” Broner, a fighter some consider washed up, but who has enormous talent nonetheless and who appears to be taking the challenge Garcia presents quite seriously, to boot. Sure enough, the brash Broner has a personality better suited for contemporary superstardom than Garcia does…even though Garcia might well be the better boxer.
Flashy, showy and completely obnoxious, Broner has those assets modern society can’t get enough of. His fights, even against less than stellar opposition, still bring in nice ratings, and he’s a fighter people love to watch perhaps because of who he is rather than what he can do in the ring. Sure, Broner has – thankfully – toned it down a bit over the years, but the guy knows what to sell the public…and in the Mayweather-McGregor era, that ain’t talent (or at least not talent alone). Still, Broner has allowed himself to face a serious opponent this weekend, one which most expect to defeat him, and that brings us to the question of what happens if Garcia wins.
First off, the man will be a darling of hardcore boxing fans should he vanquish Broner on Saturday. Beating Broner, boxing’s great heel before a certain Irishman came around, is good for one’s career. Yet, it’s worth keeping in mind that Garcia is a serious man who takes his work seriously, and that sort of thing simply doesn’t sell outside of the narrow margins of hardcore fandom. People want flash – and lots of it. Talent and ability – and Garcia has plenty of both – merely complement personality as far today’s larger public is concerned. Achievement alone is most decidedly NOT something to hang one’s hat on. At least that’s generally true in the minds of those who have the power to elevate a pay per view event to over a million buys.
Still, nice guys CAN finish first. It just takes them a lot longer to be grudgingly accepted by the public at large. Rather than flash wads of cash in front of people, Garcia will have to do the hard – the very hard – work of rolling over one top level opponent after another if he wishes to be truly admired. Broner, on the other hand, need only beat Garcia and immediately start shooting off his mouth in order to get serious attention.
As Donald Fagen once sang:
“The things you think are precious, I can’t understand.”
It’s High Noon For Adrien Broner
It’s High Noon For Adrien Broner
By: Sean Crose
“I’ve been in some crazy situations,” the Miami Herald quotes Adrien Broner as saying, “and I’m blessed to be here.” Could this, one may ask, truly be the brash Broner talking? The man who once flushed (hopefully fake) money down a toilet? The man who once referred to himself as being “About Billions?” The man who once planned to host a party bus (I wonder whatever happened to that endeavor?)? Indeed, it seems to be. “I’m taking this seriously,” the Herald further quotes Broner as saying. I know, I know, we’ve heard this all before. Broner is a changed man. Broner means business this time around. Such things ring hollow after learning of another arrest, after seeing more silliness online, after witnessing Broner just seeming like, well, Broner.
This time, however, perhaps – perhaps being the operative word here – things are finally different. For in the leadup to this weekend’s upcoming bout with the talented, uber-serious Mikey Garcia, Broner seems, well, INTENSE. Not insane. Not idiotic. Just intense. As in focused. The question now is whether or not the Cincinnati native has pissed away too much of his talent for this newfound professionalism to even count for much. The truth is that Broner has never done all that well on the big stage. Not once. A close – some say controversial – win over Paulie Malignaggi looks to have been the high point of Broner’s career to date. After that there were beatdowns from Marcos Maidana and Shawn Porter respectively.
And since that time? Well, the man’s gotten along just fine if one counts being in the public consciousness as a measure of success. Broner still hasn’t faced another major opponent, though. At least not until now. This Saturday in Brooklyn’s Barclay’s Center, however, Broner is facing the real thing – a young undefeated guy who doesn’t believe in flash, a man who simply believes in beating his opponents, often by beating them into oblivion. Make no mistake about it, the 36-0 Garcia is dangerous. A loss this time out – at least a definitive one – might well spell the end of the 33-2 Broner’s time as a major player in the sport.
One thing needs to be made clear, though, and that’s the fact that Broner is not just some random opponent in this battle. Sure enough, the man has a real chance of winning. Broner’s always had a sharp skill set – perhaps not of the prime Floyd Mayweather level – but conceivably just a rung or two below. If the guy is as focused as he says he is – and as he appears to be in camp – Broner may be looking at a career revival. It’s also worth noting that the fight is going to be held in the 140 pound junior welterweight realm – rather foreign territory for lightweight titlist Garcia. It may be high noon for the fighter known as “The Problem,” but that doesn’t mean Broner won’t enter the ring on Saturday well equipped for a firefight.