Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Prograis, Bivol, Pascal, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of October 9th to October 16th; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Photo Credit: Tom Hogan-HoganPhotos/Golden Boy Promotions
Canelo Alvarez Receives WBC Middleweight Title in Mexico City
Canelo Alvarez (50-1-2, 34 KOs) received his WBC Middleweight World Title today at Museo Soumaya in Mexico City in recognition of his spectacular victory against Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in September. Canelo also received the Cinturon Chiapaneco and the Cinturon Huichol at this momentous event as he prepares to return to the ring. The 28-year-old WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion will take on WBA Super Middleweight World Champion Rocky Fielding (27-1, 15 KOs) in a special 12-round super middleweight attraction on Saturday, Dec. 15 at Madison Square Garden.
Below is what today’s participants had to say at the belt presentation:
CANELO ALVAREZ, WBC, WBA, Lineal and Ring Magazine Middleweight World Champion:
“I want to thank everyone for their support during the good times and the bad. It was a tough year for me. I would never do anything to blemish my career, but I’m grateful to all those who were there with me. I’m going to represent the WBC from here on. They’ve been my family since the beginning. It’s a great responsibility to be a Mexican world champion. But I take that responsibility because I know I’m a determined and disciplined fighter. I honor every fighter who has fought at Madison Square Garden, but I’m going to make my own story. This is another chapter in my legacy.
JOSE “CHEPO” REYNOSO, Manager and Trainer of Canelo Alvarez:
“The past 13 years of Canelo Alvarez’s career has not been easy. It has been difficult. But when you have a lot of determination like he does, it makes the hard road that much easier. We completed the promise of making him a world champion because he completed his part of working hard. I thank everyone here and the sport of boxing.”
EDDY REYNOSO, Head Trainer and Manager of Canelo Alvarez:
“I’m grateful and thankful for all that Canelo Alvarez has achieved. I thank Mauricio Sulaiman and the WBC for their help. They’ve supported us all along the way. We’re proud of what he has accomplished, and we know there is more to come.”
ERIC GOMEZ, President of Golden Boy Promotions:
“We’ve worked with Canelo Alvarez since he was a very young prospect. He was hungry and determined to be great. To see him achieve that greatness is a wonderful thing to see. I congratulate him on this exciting day for him.”
MAURICIO SULAIMAN, President of the WBC:
“Canelo shut a lot of mouths in his last fight. He quieted a lot of critics who said he did not come forward. But in his last fight he showed with his fists and his aggression that he is the better fighter. Canelo is always first to raise the Mexican flag after a victory and yell Viva Mexico! I am so proud he is representing the WBC once again.”
Canelo vs. Fielding is a 12-round fight for the WBA Super Middleweight World Title presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Matchroom Boxing. The event is sponsored by Tecate, “THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING,” and Hennessy “Never Stop. Never Settle.” The event will take place Saturday, December 15 at Madison Square Garden in New York City, New York.
Prograis Makes Brief Stop Home Before Upcoming Fight
Since the Crescent City last saw native son Regis “Rougarou” Prograis in the ring in July, it’s been a whirlwind for the rising star of boxing’s super lightweight division.
Prograis has been to Russia, Brazil and then in training for nearly six weeks in both Los Angeles and Houston as he counts down to an Oct. 27 matchup with Englishman Terry Flanagan at UNO Lakefront Arena.
“I started training camp two weeks earlier,” Prograis said Wednesday in a visit with local media. “I had to go to Russia on Tuesday (after his last fight). When I came back, I went back to Houston and bought a house. I barely stayed in my house for a couple of days, then I went to Brazil for a month … I was training MMA and jiu jitsu. I was back in Houston for a week, then off to (Los Angeles) for training camp.”
The longer camp allowed Prograis and trainer Bobby Benton to change the focus initially.
“As we start camp, we usually start with strength and conditioning,” Benton said. “Instead, we worked his feet. His feet are so much better, his balance is better. It’s made a difference.”
Prograis was wearing a reminder of how difficult training for the fight has been, showing a mark below his left eye as a result of a “little pop” in training Tuesday.
“My training camps are really, really hard,” Prograis said. “My body is sore.”
It’s the second consecutive fight at Lakefront Arena for Prograis, who dispatched Juan Jose Velasco in an eighth-round TKO in the headline event of New Orleans’ first championship fight card in nearly two decades.
“My whole goal is to turn it into a franchise,” Prograis said. “We got the Saints, the Pelicans, and hopefully now we’ll have Regis Prograis.”
A win against Flanagan could mean a return to New Orleans for his next bout.
Prograis, who is 22-0 in his career with 19 knockouts, is not only the No. 1 seed in the super lightweight bracket for the Ali Trophy, but ranked No. 1 in the 140-pound division by ESPN. As the top seed, he had a choice of opponents and picked Flanagan (33-1, 13 KOs).
“I’m in it to fight the best people,” Prograis said. “Terry Flanagan is tough, he’s scrappy, he’s going to come to right and he has a lot of experience. I wanted to fight the hardest fight first.”
If his first fight in his hometown taught Prograis anything, it was to watch what he eats right before the fight. What will he do differently this time? “Don’t eat po-boys and gumbo before I fight,” he said. “Otherwise, everything went smoothly. I experienced (nervousness) already, so that’s done. This time, it’s going to be back being fun to me again.”
If Prograis can win the Ali Trophy – the final would likely happen around June 2019 – he has in his sight a matchup with fellow unbeaten Jose Ramirez (23-0). Prograis attended Ramirez’s fight last month in Fresno, California.
Prograis and his team were headed back to Houston late Wednesday to resume training before returning to New Orleans in the days leading up to the fight.
The Prograis-Flanagan co-headliner is another Ali Trophy super-lightweight quarterfinal between Ivan Baranchyk and Anthony Yigit for the IBF world championship.
The undercard is expected to begin at 6 p.m., with the two main events at about 9. Tickets are available through Ticketmaster and the Lakefront Arena box office.
Dmitry Bivol to Defend WBA Title Against Jean Pascal in Atlantic City
Dmitry Bivol will defend his WBA Light Heavyweight World Title against former Olympian and former WBC, IBO, and Ring Magazine champion Jean Pascal on Saturday, November 24, 2018 as boxing returns to Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City.
The event will be promoted by Main Events and World of Boxing, Bivol’s promoter, in association with Jean Pascal Promotions. The bout will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Bivol, age 27, of St. Petersburg Russia, risks his perfect record of 14 wins with no losses and 11 knockouts against the time-tested Pascal, who turns 36 on October 28, has 33 wins, 20 by knockout, against five losses and a draw.
Bivol is coming off a dominating 12-round decision victory over crafty Isaac Chilemba of Malawi on August 4. Pascal is fresh from an eighth round TKO over former UFC champion Steve Bosse at Place Bell in Laval, Quebec on July 20.
After storming through the amateur ranks, Bivol has quickly moved himself into position to take over the highly competitive light heavyweight division by facing top names and defeating them, one after the other. Bivol is open about his ambitious goals to fight all of the best opponents in the division, and to deliver entertaining fights in front of large audiences.
Bivol’s ultimate goal to unify the light heavyweight division: “It’s very important for me. It’s every boxer’s dream to be the champion, the unified champion. It’s a big step to dream about. Like (unified cruiserweight champion) Oleksandr Usyk.”
Although he has a humble nature, Bivol is sure about his abilities. “Not too long ago, Pascal fought for three world titles and I watched on TV. Now he wants to take my title away, and I am very happy to accept this challenge and look forward to my next title defense on HBO.”
Vadim Kornilov, Bivol’s manager, added, “We are looking forward to another great performance by Dmitry Bivol on November 24th. Jean Pascal is a name everyone has heard, and we look forward to a competitive fight with this great champion.”
Andrei Ryabinski of World of Boxing, Bivol’s promoter, said, “We are glad to be putting together another fight for Dmitry Bivol together with HBO, Main Events and the Hard Rock. Look forward to a great fight between Dmitry Bivol and Jean Pascal!”
“This is the most important fight of my life and I could not be more motivated,” said Pascal. “I’m making boxing history on November 24th. I’m known as a champion who never turned down any challenges, but I want to be two-time champion and I want to be immortalized in the Hall of Fame when my career is over. To fully cement my status as a hall of famer, I must win this fight and I will win this fight.
“Bivol is a very good fighter and a difficult challenge, but greatness has never been achieved without overcoming difficult challenges. My Canadian fans should be very excited because all of the light heavyweight belts will be in our house for Christmas this year,” promised Pascal.
Manager Greg Leon is equally confident. “In my opinion Bivol is the best light heavyweight champion in the world, so this is an extremely difficult challenge for us. However, Jean is fighting for the hall of fame, history and legacy. That coupled with the intangibles he possesses that cannot be taught make him the most dangerous fighter Bivol has ever faced by far.
“November 24th will provide Bivol with a couple of new experiences; he’ll be fighting in his first major main event and he’ll be suffering his first loss as a professional,” said Leon.
Main Events CEO Kathy Duva said, “Main Events could not be more excited to return to Atlantic City for our second card at the Hard Rock’s Etess Arena. Our first card there on August 4 was a sellout, and we expect to build on that momentum by bringing Dmitry back to be in the main event on November 24.”
“Following up on the success of last August’s fight between Alvarez and Kovalev, this will just be another step forward in Atlantic City’s return to professional boxing,” says Bernie Dillon, Vice President of Entertainment for Hard Rock Hotel & Casino Atlantic City, “I’m thrilled that Hard Rock can be a big part of that.”
Ruben Villa Shines on Front of Hometown Fans on Saturday Night
Featherweight Ruben Villa (14-0, 5 KOs) returned to his hometown for the second time in his career and delivered a thrilling, one-sided performance against the game Miguel Carrizoza (10-4, 2 KOs) Saturday night from a sold-out Storm House in Salinas, Calif.
Villa, 21, used terrific footwork to find the angles against Carrizoza in route to a sweep of the scorecards in the 8-round main event. Throughout the fight, Villa hammered Carrizoza with a stiff jab, followed by a thundering left hand. It was an outstanding display of accuracy for the southpaw in his fifth fight of the year.
“I felt great tonight,” said Villa, who is promoted by Banner Promotions and Thompson Boxing. “Everything was clicking. The guy was tough. I landed a lot of good shots and he came coming back. I’m very happy with my performance. I put on a great show for my hometown fans.”
To watch a replay of Villa’s dominant performance, please click here
Villa, who has been as active as possible since joining the professional ranks in 2016, looked as comfortable as he ever has.
“I’m gaining more and more confidence with each win,” Villa said. “I like where I’m at right now.”
PBC on FS1 Results: Pascal Defeats Elbiali and Retires
By: Ken Hissner
At the Hialeah Park Racing & Casino in Hialeah, FL, on Friday night, promoter Leon Margules of Warrior Boxing over USA Fox Sports 1 presented a triple header.
In the main event light heavyweight Egyptian Ahmed Elbiali, 16-1 (13), of Miami, FL, suffered his first loss as former world champion Haitian Jean Pascal, 32-5-1 (19), of Quebec, CAN, ended his career with a win at 2:06 of the sixth round.
Photo Credit: Douglas DeFelice / Premier Boxing Champions
In the first round after twenty seconds Elbiali landed a left hook to the chin of Pascal rocking him. He went after Pascal who countered with a left hook to the head of Elbiali. Pascal finished the final minute strong with left hooks to the head of Elbiali. In the second round Pascal was swinging wildly mostly with left hooks. Elbiali landed his share of rights to the head. Pascal ended the round with a flurry of punches to the head of Elbiali.
In the third round both fighters mixed it up well taking turns getting the better of it. Pascal would throw and land punches then hold too much. In the fourth round just under a minute into the round the slugfest continued with both fighters landing bombs. Referee Tellis Ashimentos warned Pascal to stop holding. A big left hook by Pascal to the chin of Elbiali was the highlight of the round.
In the fifth round both fighters landed right hands to the head at the same time. With a minute remaining in the round Pascal was overwhelming Elbiali. Both fighters looked exhausted at the end of the round. In the sixth round Pascal turned up the heat over the much younger Elbiali driving him into a corner landing a dozen punches causing Elbiali’s corner to throw in the towel forcing referee Telis Assimenios ending the fight.
Returning after a fourteen month layoff welterweight southpaw Bryant “Goodfella” Perrella, 15-1 (13), of Ft. Myers, FL, wona lopsided decision over southpaw Alex “Chi-Town Heat” Martin, 13-3 (5), over 8 rounds with a first round knockdown.
In round one Perella was the aggressor outworking Martin. With less than half a minute left in the round a vicious right hook from Perella on the chin of Martin dropped him. Referee Andrew Glen gave him the 8 count. Martin held on to get through the round. In the second round Perella continued to walk through Martin who was on the defense for the most part.
In the third round Perella continued to push Martin around the ring. Martin waited until the final ten seconds to land a combination to the head of Perella. In the fourth round Martin worked his way back into the fight with right hooks to the head and body.
In the fifth round Perella was on the offense backing up Martin. With less than a minute left in the round a Perella right hook to the head stunned Martin. In the sixth round Perella continued to outwork Martin. Halfway thru the round Perella landed half a dozen punches that were unanswered by Martin.
In the seventh round Perella continued to dominate Martin. With a minute left in the round Martin landed a rare combination to the head of Perella. In the eighth and final round Perella dominated the first half of the round while Martin came back landing well but too little too late.
Judges scores Green and Ray 79-72 with Ross 77-74, this writer 78-73.
In the co-main event returning after a year off heavyweight Cuban southpaw Louis “King Kong” Ortiz, 28-0 (24), of Miami, FL, knocked out Daniel “The Mountain” Martz, 16-6-1 (13), of Clarksburg, WV, at 0:43 of the second round.
From ringside WBC champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder got into the ring telling Ortiz “you better be in shape because I am going to knock you out!”
In the first round it was all Ortiz. With less than twenty seconds left several body shots while inside dropped a defensive Martz. In the second round a crushing left on the chin of Martz and down he went and out. Referee Sam Burgos didn’t count but just waved it off.
Featherweight Stephen ”Cool Boy Steph” Fulton, 12-0 (5), of West Philadelphia, PA, scored a majority decision over Adam “Blunose” Lopez, 8-1 (3), of Glendale, CA, over 8 rounds.
In the first round both were trading jabs until Lopez landed a 3-punch combination. Lopez gets Fulton in a corner and lands half a dozen punches before Fulton spun out and landed several punches of his own. With half a minute left in the round Fulton landed his best punch of the round a lead right hand to the chin of Lopez. In the second round half a minute in Lopez landed a power punch right to the head of Fulton. With a minute left in the round Fulton landed a big right to the chin of Lopez. Lopez would come back and rock Fulton with seconds to go in the round with a big right to the head.
In the third round Lopez landed several good shots driving a countering Fulton into the ropes. Lopez landed over a half dozen punches to a hands held high Fulton who was against the ropes. With under a minute left in the round Fulton landed a solid left hook to the head of Lopez drawing blood from the nose of Lopez. In the fourth round the blood from the nose of Lopez is flowing. Fulton countered much better in the round outworking Lopez for the most part. Lopez seemed to have some trouble breathing due to the nose bleed.
In the fifth round in the middle of the ring after Fulton becoming the aggressor for the first half of the round Lopez landed several good uppercuts with both hands to the chin of Fulton. Under a minute left in the round Fulton landed a good right to the chin of Lopez. The jab of Fulton is giving Lopez trouble. In the sixth round Lopez turned to southpaw again becoming the aggressor. With a minute to go in the round Fulton takes the lead landing straight rights to the head of Lopez making him go back to orthodox. In the final twenty seconds Fulton drops his hands scoring well but at the bell he got his second warning from the referee Assimenios for a low blow.
In the seventh round both boxers are slugging it out. Halfway through the round Fulton continues to show his better hand speed while Lopez works on the body when inside. In a close round Fulton seemed to have a slight edge. In the eighth and final round Lopez lands a double left hook to the chin of Fulton. Lopez got a warning for a low blow. Lopez was scoring well but walked into a Fulton left hook to the head. Just under a minute Lopez landed a good right to the head of Fulton. Lopez’s trainer former champion Buddy McGirt was screaming to let his hands go. The corner of Fulton was Hamaz Muhammad and assistant Naziim Richardson.
Judges scores were Rupert 76-76, Ross 78-74 and Young 77-75 with this writer having it 76-76.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Kovalev, Ali, Pascal, Frazier, Gonzaga, and more…
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of October 24th to October 31st; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Kovalev vs. Shabranskyy Now for WBO Light Heavyweight Title
The World Boxing Organization voted today at their annual convention to sanction the upcoming battle at the Theater at Madison Square Garden on Saturday, November 25 between former unified light heavyweight world champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (30-2-1, 26 KOs) and Vyacheslav “Lion Heart” Shabranskyy (19-1, 16 KOs) for the vacant WBO Light Heavyweight World Title.
The fight will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing® beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT and is presented by Main Events and Krusher Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions. Tickets range from $50 to $350 and available online at Ticketmaster.com, at the MSG box office or Main Events’ office by calling (973) 200-7050 or emailing [email protected]
Kovalev vs. Shabranskyy is a 12-round fight for the vacant WBO Light Heavyweight World Title promoted by Main Events and Krusher Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions. Barrera vs. Valera is a 10-round light heavyweight fight promoted by Main Events in Association with Shuan Boxing Promotions. Sosa vs. Castellanos is a 10-round super featherweight fight promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Peltz Boxing. The event will take place at the Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York City, and will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.
Unbeatend Ahmed Elbiali Clashes with Jean Pascal on December 8th
Unbeaten contender Ahmed Elbiali will take on former world champion Jean Pascal in the 10-round light heavyweight main event of a special Friday night edition of Premier Boxing Champions TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS on FS1 and BOXEO DE CAMPEONES on FOX Deportes, December 8 from Hialeah Park in Miami, Florida.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and features former two-time world champion Chad Dawson against hard-hitting contender Edwin Rodriguez in a 10-round bout plus a showdown between unbeaten prospects Austin Dulay (11-0, 8 KOs) and Raynell Williams (12-0, 6 KOs) in eight rounds of lightweight action.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Warriors Boxing, begin at $30 and are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased at www.TicketForce.com or calling (877) 840-0457, and are also available at the casino cage.
“The historic Hialeah Park Racetrack & Casino is a beautiful venue for an old-school crossroads fights like Ahmed Elbiali vs. Jean Pascal and Chad Dawson vs. Edwin Rodriguez,” said Leon Margules, President of Warriors Boxing. “In the main event, the world will be watching to see if the young contender Elbiali will have his day or if the older champion Jean Pascal still has what it takes. With Dawson vs. Rodriguez, it is ‘do or die’ time for both these guys. The winner of this fight will go on to another big opportunity. The loser will have some thinking to do. It’s going to be an outstanding night of fights from top to bottom, at one of the nicest venues for boxing in North America.”
The 27-year-old Elbiali (16-0, 13 KOs) is a powerful 175-pound contender looking to prove he stacks up with the other big punchers in the division. Born in Cairo, Egypt and now living in Miami, he will be fighting before a hometown crowd in a major step up bout against the former 175-pound champion Pascal. Elbiali is coming off a TKO victory against Christopher Brooker in his last fight on July 18 after previously stopping Jackson Junior in March.
“I’m so thankful to everyone who helped me get here and believe in my skills enough to give this opportunity,” said Elbiali. “This is my golden ticket. I’m excited, ready and blessed for this opportunity. Come December 8, it will be fireworks in Miami!”
Pascal (31-5-1, 18 KOs) was born in Port-au-Prince, Haiti but now lives in Laval, Quebec, Canada, and won the light heavyweight title with a decision victory over Adrian Diaconu. He went on to make three defenses, including a victory over Chad Dawson, before losing the title to Bernard Hopkins in 2011. The 34-year-old is looking to bounce back from losing a majority decision to Eleider Alvarez in his last fight on June 3.
“This is not only a comeback fight, but I’m ready to battle for my career on December 8,” said Pascal. “They’re trying to give this young guy a test against a former champion and he’s going to try to use me as a ladder to the next level in this sport. I have a dangerous opponent and I’m going to be ready for him. When I fought Bernard Hopkins I was the young lion, now it’s the other way around and I’m going to be ready to show him something he’s never seen before.”
Ali, Frazier, Marciano Autographed Memorabilia on Auction Block
The Steiner Auctions’ “Fall Classic” online auction is by no means limited to baseball memorabilia with a slew of collectibles signed by greats of the sweet science on the auction block up for grabs through November 18th. Legendary boxing champions such as Rocky Marciano, Muhammad Ali, Joe Frazier, Mike Tyson, Sugar Ray Leonard and Floyd Mayweather spearhead the online auction.
Visit steinerauctions.com to bid and for more information.
Gennady Golovkin, Marvin Hagler, Oscar de la Hoya, Manny Pacquiao and Jack Dempsey are also among the greats featured.
The Aaron Judge Game Used No. 99 Home Uniform Jersey from September 30, 2017 when he broke Babe Ruth’s 96-year record for most Home Runs at Yankee Stadium juxtaposed against the 1925 Lou Gehrig Signed Yankees Players Contract and a Yankee Stadium Guest Book Signed by Babe Ruth, Jackie Robinson, Walter Johnson and Mickey Mantle can also be found on the auction block.
In late July, the uniform jersey worn by Aaron Judge in the Yankee rookie’s debut game, which fetched a high bid of $160,644.05, was the top seller in Steiner Auctions’ Mid-Summer Classic on-line auction which concluded Saturday (July 29). A total of more than $1 million in winning bids was collected on 1,006 memorabilia pieces.
Collectors interested in consigning memorabilia to the next Steiner auction may call 914-307-1058 or email [email protected]
Here are some of the vintage collectibles included in the Fall Classic Auction.
• Rocky Marciano Cut Signature framed Collage (JSA)
• 1958 Cassius Clay Golden Gloves Light Heavyweight Ticket
• Floyd Patterson Light Heavyweight Champion Ring
• Muhammad Ali vs. Sonny Liston II Original Full Fight Ticket from November 16, 1964
• Muhammad Ali Vs. Floyd Patterson Original Full Fight Ticket from November 22, 1965
• Sugar Ray Leonard Signed Boxing Trunks (PSA/DNA Holo Only)
• Smokin Joe Frazier Signed 20×30 Framed Photo with Ali (PSA/DNA)
Former UFC Heavyweight Title Challenger Gabriel Gonzaga Wins Boxing Debut
Former UFC heavyweight title challenger Gabriel “Napao” Gonzaga has a successful pro boxing debut last night (Saturday, Oct. 28) in the co-featured event on the “New England’s Future 4″ card, presented by Rivera Promotions Entertainment (RPE), at DCU Center, Exhibition Hall, in Worcester.
The 6′ 2”, 280-pound Brazilian, now fighting out of Worcester (MA), fought another pro-debut boxer with limited MMA experience, Alejandro Esquilin Santiago, of Tampa (FL). Gonzaga stalked the southpaw Santiago, landing some hard shots in the opening round. The heavy-handed Gonzaga picked up the pace in the third and his upset-minded opponent responded in a positive fashion. Both fighters exchanged freely in the fourth and final round, neither was hurt during the contest, and Gonzaga was awarded a win by four-round majority decision.
“I thought I’d be more relaxed in the ring like I had been in the gym,” Gonzaga said. “I did my best and came away with a victory. I was too safe in the third round. My punches were much strong and a lot of his punches I blocked with my gloves. This was really great! tonight”
“I felt good and gave it my all,” Santiago remarked. “He hit me with some shots and gave ’em back. Not only does he have a big nose (“Napao”), he has a strong, big head, too.”
In the main event, popular Hartford (CT) light heavyweight Richard “Popeye The Sailor Man” Rivera remained undefeated, improving his record to 4-0 (3 KOs), with a first-round knockout of an over-matched Hansen Castillo (0-3)
Rivera, not relations to the promoter, first dropped Castillo with a beautifully placed left uppercut and finished the show moments later with a left hook that sent Castillo flying to canvas. Referee Kevin Hope didn’t bother to count.
“My coaches were telling me to be calm because it was a six-round bout,” Rivera explained. “I saw that he had his left down and caught him with an uppercut. I’m strong to the finish because I eat my spinach.”
New Haven junior middleweight Edwin Sosa (11-2-2, 4 KOs) overcame at 15-pound disadvantage, at the very least, en route to a dominant six-round unanimous decision over Anthony “The Animal” Everett (1-7), of Rowley (MA).
Danbury (CT) junior welterweight Omar Bordoy, Jr. (3-0, 1 KO) stopped New York veteran Bryan “The Brick” Abraham (6-31, 6 KOs) in the fourth and final round. Abraham was decked twice and after counting to 10 after Abraham’s second time on the canvas, referee Paul Casey waved off the action.
Three-time national amateur champion Elvis “Chi Chi” Figueroa (3-0, 1 KO), fighting out of New Haven, pitched a complete shutout over a game, pro-debuting Rene Nazare (0-1), of Brazil, for a convincing win by way of a four-round unanimous decision.
Southbridge (MA) welterweight Wilfredo “El Sucaro” Pagan (3-0, 1 KO) pinned Patrick Leal (0-4), of Woburn, on the ropes early, dropping him three times until referee Casey halted the fight midway through the opening round.
Edis Tatli and Francesco Patera Will Clash for EBU Lightweight Belt
Edis Tatli (29–2) gets a chance to revenge his split decision defeat against Francesco Patera (18–2). Tatli and Patera will meet for the second time on 12th December in Finland.
Tatli and Patera met for the first time in May, as the challenger Patera managed to squeeze out a controversial decision over the EBU champ Tatli. Tatli, his team and Finnish sports journalists were shocked over the verdict, and Tatli’s manager Pekka Mäki filed a formal claim demanding an immediate rematch between the two.
The claim was rejected, but Tatli was named as the mandatory challenger for the victor of Patera’s next fight. Patera was supposed to face Yvan Mendy next, but Mendy had other ideas and withdrew from the fight. Therefore it’s Tatli’s turn after all.
Tatli vows to get his vengeance.
“This time the fight won’t go to the scorecards”, says Tatli.
“I will give him a boxing lesson. If I was too passive in our last fight, now it’s different. I will give him a beating and become the European champion once more.”
The fight, dubbed as The Rematch, will take place at Kisahalli, Helsinki. More info about the event will be published next week.
Showtime World Championship Results: Adonis Stevenson Blitzes Past Fonfara, Alvarez Defeats Pascal
Showtime World Championship Results: Adonis Stevenson Blitzes Past Fonfara, Alvarez Defeats Pascal
By: William Holmes
Reigning WBC Light Heavyweight Champion Jean Pascal fought again in the familiar confines of the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada as he defended his title against an opponent he had difficulty with before, Polish light heavyweight Andrzej Fonfara.
The opening bout of the evening was between former lineal light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal (31-4-1) and the undefeated prospect Eleider Alvarez (22-0). Despite Pascal’s recent losses, he still remains a popular boxer in Canada.
Alvarez, the taller fighter, took the center of the ring in the opening round and was sharp with his jab and the more aggressive boxer early. Pascal rallied late in the first round with some good shots to the body and may have stolen that round.
Alvarez’s straight right hand forced Pascal to clinch in the second round and was able to land some hard uppercuts. His aggressiveness continued into the third round which featured a fierce exchange between both boxers as the round ended.
Pascal was warned for punching after the break in the fourth round as Alvarez’s sharp jab was forcing Pascal to hold on often. Alvarez’s jab continued to be effective in the fifth, sixth, and seventh rounds and were noticeable effecting Jean Pascal.
Pascal was able to land some good flurries in the eighth round including two right hooks to the temple and a double left hook. But Alvarez retook control in the ninth round and landed two head snapping right uppercuts that had Pascal hurt.
Pascal may have stolen the tenth and eleventh rounds with late flurries near the end of the rounds, but in the final round Alvarez looked like the fresher fighter and was able to close out the bout strong.
The final scores were 114-114, 117-111 and 116-112 for Eleider Alvarez.
The main event of the night was between WBC Light Heavyweight Champion Adonis Stevenson (28-1) and Andrzej Fonfara (29-4).
Fonfara started off aggressively and was coming at Stevenson with his jab, but his momentum was short lived. Stevenson landed his straight left and followed it up with a clubbing straight left that sent Fonfara down to the mat. Fonfara was able to get back to his feet, but Stevenson swarmed on Fonfara and landed several hard straight left hands that had Fonfara hurt. Stevenson was unloading on Fonfara by the corner as the opening round came to an end.
Stevenson landed several hard straight left hands to open up the second round and he had Fonfara backing up and not throwing many punches back towards Stevenson’s way. Virgil Hunter then stepped on the apron to stop the fight before his boxer would take any additional damage.
Adonis Stevenson destroys Andrzej Fonfara by TKO at 0:28 of the second round.
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Adonis Stevenson vs. Andrzej Fonfara, Jean Pascal vs. Eleider Alvarez
Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Adonis Stevenson vs. Andrzej Fonfara, Jean Pascal vs. Eleider Alvarez
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada Adonis Stevenson will take on Andrzej Fonfara for Adonis Stevenson’s WBC Light Heavyweight
Title in the main event of World Championship Boxing on Showtime.
Former world champion Jean Pascal will be the lead fight of the undercard as he takes on undefeated contender Eleider Alvarez.
Two other light heavyweight stalwarts, Sergey Kovalev and Andre Ward, will meet in a few weeks on HBO Pay Per View. It seems logical that the winner of Saturday’s Stevenson and Fonfara bout will likely face the winner of the pay per view bout between Kovalev and Ward, at least it should happen for boxing fans worldwide.
The following is a preview of Saturday’s card.
Jean Pascal (31-4-1) vs. Eleider Alvarez (22-0); Light Heavyweight
Eleider Alvarez is an intriguing prospect with a successful amateur background that includes competing in the 2008 Summer Olympics. Pascal is an ex-champion that has faced some legends in the sport. He also had a successful amateur background and won the Canadian Amateur Championships seven times and competed in the 2004 Summer Olympics.
Alvarez will have about an inch and a half height advantage as well as a three and a half inch reach advantage. They’re both nearing the end of their primes, with Pascal being thirty four years old and Alvarez being thirty three years old.
Pascal has defeated the likes of Ricardo Ramallo, Yunieski Gonzalez, Lucian Bute, George Blades, Chad Dawson, and Adrian Diaconu. His losses have come to Carl Froch, Bernard Hopkins, and Sergey Kovalev twice.
Alvarez opened up a lot of eyes with his knockout in his last bout against Lucian Bute. He has also defeated the likes of Robert Berridge, Isaac Chilemba, Ryno Liebenberg, and Edison Miranda. Alvarez has never tasted defeated.
Both boxers have average power, Pascal has stopped eighteen of his opponents while Alvarez has stopped eleven of his opponents.
Alvarez is an intriguing prospect, he’s undefeated with a deep amateur background but older than the age most people would consider someone to be a prospect. But his career trajectory is on the upswing, while Pascal’s appears to be on the downswing. For that reason this writer has to give the edge to Alvarez.
Adonis Stevenson (28-1) vs. Andrzej Fonfara (29-4); WBC Light Heavyweight Title
This bout is a rematch of their bout in May of 2014 that saw Stevenson win a close and tightly contested decision.
Since that bout Stevenson has gone on a tear, including winning three of his past four fights by stoppage. Fonfara was knocked out viciously and quickly by Joe Smith Jr., but was able to bounce back from that by defeating former world champion Chad Dawson.
Both boxers had moderate success as an amateur. Stevenson won the Canadian National Championship in 2005 and 2006. Fonfara competed regularly on the European circuit. Neither boxer competed in the Olympics.
Stevenson has considerable power and has stopped twenty three of his opponents. Fonfara has seventeen stoppage victories. Both boxers have at times been stopped. Stevenson was stopped by Darnell Boone while Fonfara was stopped twice.
Stevenson has defeated the likes of Thomas Williams Jr., Tommy Karpency, Sakio Bika, Dmitry Sukhotskiy, Andrzej Fonfara, Tony Bellew, Tavoris Cloud, Chad Dawson, and Donovan George. Fonfara has defeated the likes of Chad Dawson, Nathan Cleverly, Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., Gabriel Campillo, Tommy Karpency and Glen Johnson.
Stevenson started late as a professional but is currently thirty nine years old. Fonfara is ten years younger at the age of twenty nine. Stevenson will be giving up a three and a half inch height advantage. They have the same reach.
Their first bout was close, but Fonfara is coming off a knockout loss. If this bout goes the distance Fonfara has a chance at winning as stamina favors him. But this writer believes Stevenson will walk away the victor and hopefully chase after the winner of Ward and Kovalev.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Molina, Pascal, Cotto, Lara, Povetkin, Kirkland, King, and more….
Boxing Insider Notebook: Molina, Pascal, Cotto, Lara, Povetkin, Kirkland, King, and more….
Compiled By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of December 13th to December 20th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Miguel Cotto vs. James Kirkland Showdown Set for February 25th
Roc Nation Sports and Miguel Cotto Promotions are pleased to announce that Five-Time World Champion Miguel Cotto (40-5, 33 KOs) will return to the ring on Saturday, February 25, 2017 when he takes on James “Mandingo Warrior” Kirkland (32-2, 28 KOs) at Ford Center at The Star in Frisco, Texas. Coming off respective losses to Canelo Alvarez, both fighters will be seeking redemption in a 12-round junior middleweight showdown. The event will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.
Cotto and Kirkland will join Roc Nation Sports and the Dallas Cowboys organization on Monday, December 19, 2016 at 12:00 p.m. CT for a press conference at Ford Center at The Star to officially announce the fight. This will be the first event of its kind to be held at the state-of-the-art, 510,000 square foot indoor athletic facility shared by the Dallas Cowboys, the City of Frisco, and Frisco ISD’s high schools. Ford Center at The Star is also the home to the Dallas Cowboys Football World Corporate Headquarters.
Tickets priced at $304, $204, $154, $104, $79, $54 and $29 not including applicable service charges and taxes, go on sale Thursday, Dec. 22, 2016 at 10:00 a.m. local time and will be available at all Ticketmaster locations, online at Ticketmaster.com, charge by phone at (800) 745-3000 and the AT&T Stadium box office.
“I’m excited to return to the ring and put on a great show. I can’t wait to start training camp and get ready for February 25,” said Five-Time World Champion Miguel Cotto. “Fighting inside the beautiful Ford Center, Jerry Jones and the Dallas Cowboy’s newest creation, and headlining the first ever boxing event there pumps me with a lot of enthusiasm and energy.”
“I’m very excited to get back into the ring against a legend like Miguel Cotto. I’m going to train like never before so I can show the world that the old James Kirkland is back,” said James Kirkland. “You know the fight will be exciting while it lasts. February 25 can’t come soon enough.”
“Miguel Cotto is back and ready to put on an exciting show against the always tough James Kirkland,” said Hector Soto, Vice President of Miguel Cotto Promotions. “We can’t wait to see Miguel back in the ring on February 25 on HBO Pay-Per-View.”
“On behalf of Roc Nation Sports, we are so thrilled about Miguel Cotto’s return to the ring and to bring the first public event to Ford Center at The Star,” said Michael Yormark, Roc Nation President & Chief of Branding and Strategy. “This will undoubtedly be a historic event with an exciting, all-action bout in store for the fans in Frisco and all of North Texas along with those watching from home on HBO Pay-Per-View.”
“We are excited to host an incredible matchup for the very first boxing match here at Ford Center at The Star,” said Jerry Jones, Dallas Cowboys Owner, President and General Manager. “This venue was designed with the idea of versatility in mind, and we expect a great crowd in Frisco, Texas to experience a world class fight between Miguel Cotto and James Kirkland.”
“Throughout his brilliant ring career, Miguel Cotto has never backed down from a challenge and on February 25 he takes on a dangerous knockout specialist in James Kirkland,” said Tony Walker, Vice President, HBO Pay-Per-View. “Fans watching live in Frisco and those tuning in on pay-per-view should not blink in what should be an all-action slugfest.”
Don King Responds to WBC and Povetkin-Stiverne Drug Tests
Top rated heavyweights Alexander Povetkin and Bermane Stiverne were scheduled to fight for the World Boxing Council (WBC) Interim Heavyweight title on Saturday night at the Ekaterinburg Expo Center in Ekaterinburg, Russia. However, the WBC withdrew it’s sanctioning of the bout due to a Povetkin failed drug test. The WBC informed both camps of their decision Friday evening and advised the Stiverne camp they should not go through with the fight. The WBC abides by “Safety First” protocol in their Clean Boxing Program.
Povetkin (31-1, 23 KOs) from Checkhov, Russia was going into the fight rated No. 1 by the WBC. No. 2 rated Stiverne (25-2-1, 21 KOs) was born and raised in Haiti, now residing in Las Vegas. They were to fight for the WBC Interim Heavyweight Title, the winner becoming mandatory challenger to current champion Deontay Wilder, who has been incapable of defending due to injury.
The WBC uses VADA (Voluntary Anti-Doping Association) to administer their drug testing. VADA uses random testing and athletes may be tested at any time. This is the second fight in which Povetkin has tested positive for a banned substance – this time Ostarine. Povetkin’s positive sampling was taken December 6 and the WBC and both fight camps were notified of the test results Friday night. Within a couple of hours of the notification, the WBC tweeted it was “Withdrawing its recognition of Povetkin vs Stiverne due to the positive result of Povetkin for Osterine,” and shortly thereafter wrote in its ruling “The WBC hereby withdraws its sanctioning of the bout for the heavyweight interim world championship and will conduct a thorough investigation of the circumstances of the case and will issue subsequent rulings as required.”
Statement from Stiverne’s promoter Don King: “To say that I am very saddened and extremely disappointed that Alexander Povetkin was caught again using banned substances would be an understatement. What is the WBC going to do about it will be the answer. Bermane Stiverne deserves better than that. Bermane should be declared the interim title holder. This is the second time Alexander Povetkin is in the drug abuse program and has embarrassed the WBC causing the WBC’s sanction of the fight as a world title fight being withdrawn. The firs time was the Deontay Wilder vs. Povetkin May 21 in Moscow.
“Even though it hurts Bermane economically, psychologically and especially psychologically, I want to congratulate the WBC’s Clean Boxing Program. WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman did himself and his organization, the WBC, proud by withdrawing their sanctioning of the fight.. Thank you WBC, thank you Mauricio Sulaiman, thank you for your honest, dynamic leadership.”
Ostarine is known to increase muscle mass and fat loss as well as increase stamina. Previously Povetkin was to face WBC titleholder Deontay Wilder on May 21, but tested positive for Meldonium a week prior to the fight. Meldonium is known to increase blood vessel size, increasing blood, hence, improving once again, stamina.
Erislandy Lara to Defend Title Against Yuri Foreman
Super welterweight world champion Erislandy “The American Dream” Lara (23-2-2, 13 KOs) will take on former world champion Yuri Foreman (34-2, 10 KOs) in a world title showdown that headlines Premier Boxing Champions on Spike on Friday, January 13 from Hialeah Park Racing and Casino in Miami.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT with former super middleweight world champion Anthony “The Dog” Dirrell (29-1-1, 23 KOs) battling Hungary’s Norbert Nemesapati (24-4, 17 KOs) in a 10-round bout.
“I’m very excited to be making my return to the ring in front of my Cuban fans in Miami on Spike on January 13,” said Lara. “Yuri Foreman is a former world champion who is dedicated to this sport and will be looking to win another world title. I expect nothing but the best from him. On fight night, I’m making another statement and going for the knockout! After this fight, it’s time to unify the division, then move up to win the middleweight titles. Everyone should tune-in because it’s going to be a great night of boxing.”
“I’m thrilled to be fighting for the world title,” said Foreman. “I’m really looking forward to showcasing my skills and talent and becoming a two-time world champion. At this stage of my career, it would be a tremendous accomplishment. Lara is very crafty and many elite fighters have had trouble dealing with his style, but I have studied him and am very confident that I will defeat him by presenting him with something he’s never seen before.”
The Cuban Lara will be making his fifth defense of his title as he heads to Miami to fight in front of the many Cuban boxing fans in the city. The consensus best fighter at 154-pounds, Lara will be challenged by an experienced Foreman, a former 154-pound champion in his own right, who has fully recovered from physical ailments that almost derailed his career. Now, Foreman looks to establish that he can still challenge at the elite level as he prepares to solve the crafty champion.
Tickets for the live event, which is promoted by Warriors Boxing, are priced at $25, $35, $50, $75, $100 and $125, not including applicable fees, and are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased online at www.myticketforce.com by clicking HERE, by phone at (877) 840-0457 or at the Hialeah Park casino cage.
Barrerra Taunts Pascal, “Did My KO of Shabranskyy Scare You?”
Fresh off of his crushing 7th round knockout of the previously unbeaten Vyacheslav Shabranskyy, top rated light heavyweight contender Sullivan “Sully B” Barrera has his next victim in mind.
The former amateur standout from Cuba wants to avenge his countryman Yunieski Gonzalez’s defeat to Jean Pascal. Shabranskyy is the only other fighter to defeat his compatriot.
“I knocked out Shabranskyy to get revenge for my friend and I will knockout Pascal too. We can fight anywhere in the United States. Hell, I would go to his country of Haiti and fight him. I just want to get my hands on him,” Barrera stated.
Barrera has been chasing Pascal for two years but has had no luck getting the former champion in the ring. With Barrera’s main two targets – Andre Ward and Sergey Kovalev – locked in for a year rematch in the first half of 2017, Barrera knows a fight between himself and Pascal would produce a worthy challenger for either one of them in the second half of next year.
“I want a rematch with Ward or a fight with Kovalev but I know they are fighting again so I can’t just sit around. Pascal needs to man up and fight me. If he beats me he can get a Ward fight. If I beat him I can get a Ward rematch or a Kovalev fight,” said Barrera.
“I can’t fight in Canada but I am willing to fight him anywhere else in the world. I will fight him in the backyard of his parent’s house in Haiti if he wants. Pascal, you need to stop running from me and give the fans the fight they want. Did my knockout of Shabranskyy scare you? Me and you toe to toe is guaranteed to end in a knockout! Congratulations on your win on Friday but now it is time for me and you to get in the ring!”
Adam Lopez Faces Danny Roman in Matchup of Top 10 Ranked Super Bantamweights in Main Event of ShoBox
Undefeated, WBA No. 3-ranked super bantamweight Adam Lopez (16-0-1, 8 KOs) will face the WBA’s No. 4-ranked Danny Roman (20-2-1, 7 KOs) in the 10-round main event of a ShoBox: The New Generation quadrupleheader on Friday, Jan. 20, live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast) from Bally’s Atlantic City Hotel and Casino.
The first ShoBox telecast in 2017 features eight fighters with a combined record of 115 wins against just seven losses.
In the co-feature, undefeated super middleweight Ronald Ellis (13-0-1, 1 NC, 10 KOs) will face off with Christopher Brooker (11-2, 5 KOs) in an eight-round 168-pound matchup of ShoBox veterans.
In another eight-round featured bout, former national amateur champion Kenneth Sims Jr. (10-0, 3 KOs) and Dominican Olympian Wellington Romero (11-0-1, 5 KOs) will clash in an eight-round matchup of up-and-coming, unbeaten super lightweights making their ShoBox debuts in their toughest assignments to date.
In the opening bout of the telecast, undefeated bantamweight Stephon Young (15-0-3, 6 KOs) takes on Mexican veteran and two-time interim world title challenger Daniel Rosas (19-3-1, 11 KOs) in an eight-round bantamweight bout.
Tickets for the show, which is promoted by GH3 Promotions, Kings Promotions in association with Thompson Boxing (the main event) and Bally’s Atlantic City Hotel and Casino, are $125, $100 $75 & $50 and can be purchased at www.ticketmaster.com or calling 1-800-745-3000
Warriors Boxing Congratulates King Carlos Molina for Victory Saturday Night
Warriors Boxing sends congratulations out to Former IBF junior middleweight world champion “King” Carlos Molina for winning his sixth consecutive (and fifth this year) fight on Saturday night.
Fighting at the Gran Oasis Arena in Cancun, Mexico, Molina (28-6-2, 8 KOs) won a unanimous shutout (80-72 X3) decision over Diego “Demoledor” Cruz (17-4-1, 13 KOs). The 33-year-old Molina is currently rated #9 at welterweight by the WBC.
“I feel very comfortable at 147; this is my natural weight,” said Molina, post-fight. “I am at weight after working out and I feel faster in my fights. For this fight, I worked on utilizing my jab and being more effective with it. Over all I am happy about how things came together. I will continue to work hard to get back to a world title fight.”
Molina says he likes the hectic schedule he maintained this year, in fighting five times against respectable opposition.
“I want to stay busy. The activity I experienced this year was excellent and I want to continue being busy. I want bigger fights with anyone in the top 10 at 147. I want the fights that will lead to a second world title. I am a problem for anyone at 147 and in 2017, I want to be challenged with the best the division has to offer.”
“Carlos was one of the best in the world at 154,” said his promoter, Leon Margules of Warriors Boxing. “But at 147, he could very well be the best in the world. He is a true technician with a difficult style to solve for anyone. Now that he’s bigger and stronger than his opponents, he’s in very serious contention for a second world championship once again. He had a great year and I congratulate him.”
Boxing Insider Notebook: Hurd, Herring, Joshua, Klitschko, Fury, Stevenson, Leo Santa Cruz, and more…
Boxing Insider Notebook: Hurd, Herring, Joshua, Klitschko, Fury, Stevenson, Leo Santa Cruz, and more…
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of June 14th to June 21st, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Jamel Herring to Face Denis Shafikov
Unbeaten lightweight contender and 2012 U.S. Olympian Jamel “Semper Fi” Herring (15-0, 8 KOs) will take on former title challenger Denis Shafikov (36-2-1, 19 KOs) in the 10-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN & ESPN Deportes Saturday, July 2 from Santander Arena in Reading, Pa.
The Fourth of July weekend action begins at 9 p.m. ET with undefeated Polish prospect Patryk Syzmanski (15-0, 9 KOs) taking on former title challenger “Silky” Wilky Campfort (21-2, 12 KOs) in a 10-round lightweight bout.
“I am just excited about the fight. I have been looking for a big step up to get me in title contention,” said Herring. “I started training before I got the call before the fight. I have been training in D.C. with Mike Stafford, Barry Hunter, Patrice Harris and Levi Smith and I feel after this fight, it will get me up to a championship fight. He is a tough guy. If you train hard and stay ready, you can make the fight a lot easier on yourself.”
“I am looking forward to facing Jamel Herring,” said Shafikov. “He is undefeated and a former Olympian. I have the experience of fighting for a title and I know with a win, it will get me another opportunity.”
Jarrett Hurd to Face Oscar Moline on PBC on CBS
An intriguing matchup between undefeated super welterweights Jarrett Hurd and Oscar Molina will open this Saturday’s Primetime CBS broadcast from Barclays Center in Brooklyn. The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING on CBS broadcast, presented by Premier Boxing Champions, airs live at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and is headlined by a welterweight blockbuster between undefeated champion Keith Thurman and once-beaten former titlist Shawn Porter.
The 10-round showdown between the 25-year-old Hurd (17-0, 11 KOs) and 26-year-old Molina (13-0-10 KOs) is a rare matchup between young undefeated prospects in one of boxing’s hottest divisions. The winner graduates to contender status in the stacked 154-pound class, a division featuring Erislandy Lara,
Jermall and Jermell Charlo, Demetrius Andrade and Julian Williams.
Hurd vs. Molina represents the toughest professional fight for either man.
“The dictionary definition of ‘Swift’ is to happen quickly or promptly,” said Hurd. “So just like my ring name, that’s exactly what you’ll see on Saturday night. I’m so grateful that this fight was made and that the whole world will be able to see my boxing skills on this highly anticipated card.”
“I’m excited for this fight and I’m grateful that it’s even bigger now that it’s on CBS,” said Molina. “I’ve seen Hurd fight. I know what he does well and what his weaknesses are and I’ll be looking to capitalize on them. It’s important for me to defeat the top guys and this is someone I have to beat to become a world champion one day. I’m excited about fighting in Brooklyn on the big stage, but my focus will be on my trainer’s game plan and coming out victorious.”
Stevenson vs. Williams is Announced
Groupe Yvon Michel (GYM) and Gestev are proud to officially announce, “SHOOTOUT”, the next fight for power-punching Adonis “Superman” Stevenson, July 29 at Centre Videotron, a presentation of Videotron in association with Mise-O-Jeu. This event is presented as part of the prestigious “Premier Boxing Champions” (PBC) series, to be broadcast live in the United States, and on Canal Indigo in Canada.
Stevenson (27-1, 22 KOs), who established himself as one of the most powerful pound-for-pound fighters in the world, will defend his World Boxing Council (WBC) and lineal light heavyweight (175 pound division) title for the seventh time, against the dangerous, WBC No. 9 rated Thomas “Top Dog” Williams (20-1, 14 KOs).
“I am very happy to get back in the ring for my next fight, which will be held July 16 in the superb Centre Videotron of Quebec, against Thomas Williams Jr.,” Stevenson said. I will demonstrate that, like fine wine, I am even better with age. Even though I haven’t boxed for 10 months, I’ve never left the gym and I’m willing to defend my crown.”
Artur Beterbiev Won’t Compete in Rio Olympics
After careful consideration, rising Groupe Yvon Michel (GYM) star and double Russian Olympian, Artur Beterbiev, will not take part in the qualifying process to earn a spot to compete in the 2016 Summer Olympic Games in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil.
An Olympic qualifying tournament for professional boxers will be held July 3-8 in Vargas, Venezuela, following the decision of the International Amateur Boxing Association (AIBA) to include professionals in the Olympic tournament.
However, Beterbiev (10-0, 10 KOs), who made a triumphant return to the ring after a one-year absence on June 4 at the Bell Centre in Montreal against Argentinian Ezequiel Maderna (23-3, 15 KOs), will not be there.
“After analyzing all situations, we came to the conclusion that the current situation was not favorable,” GYM president Yvon Michel explained. “The short-term goal for Artur Beterbiev is to become world champion in the pro ranks. He will be back in the ring in September.”
Currently world ranked in the top 10 of the light heavyweight division — IBF # 2, WBC and WBA #4, WBO #7 and The Ring magazine #9 — Beterbiev has already participated in the Olympics twice: 2008 in Beijing (178 lbs.) and 2012 in London (201 lbs.).
“Regardless of my boxer’s objectives, ” Beterbiev’s head trainer Marc Ramsey said, “I’m behind him 100-percent. However, the main goal remains the conquest of a World title.”
Mario Barrios to Face Devis Boschiero on PBC on ESPN
Undefeated rising super featherweight contender Mario Barrios (15-0, 8 KOs) will take on former title challenger Devis Boschiero (39-4-1, 21 KOs) in the 12-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN & ESPN Deportes Saturday, July 9 from Sun National Bank Center in Trenton, New Jersey.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and features an exciting battle of undefeated super lightweight prospects as Los Angeles-native Kevin Watts (11-0, 4 KOs) takes on Chicago’s Eddie Ramirez (13-0, 9 KOs) in a 10-round fight.
“This will be a great opportunity to showcase my talent to the world on ESPN,” said Barrios. “The time is now to take the super featherweight division by storm. A victory will put me one step closer to fulfilling my dream of becoming a world champion. I will not be denied.”
“I look forward to making my American debut on July 9 in New Jersey,” said Boschiero. “I know a win over Barrios will take me towards a world title shot. I plan on coming to America and putting on a great performance and bringing a great victory back to Italy.”
Sullivan Barrera to Pascal: “Keep Your Word, Fight Me Next!”
Former Cuban amateur standout Sullivan Barrera (17-1 12 KOs) is training hard with new trainer Derik Santos. The Florida-based duo have gelled and can’t wait to show off the new and improved Barrera in the very near future.
With Sergey Kovalev and Adonis Stevenson already locked into their next bouts, Barrera wants to face former champion Jean Pascal in a high stakes showdown. With both fighters coming off of losses, the heavy handed fighters are sure to produce fireworks in what would be the definition of a crossroads roads battle. The winner would be in a great position for several major fights in the winter and spring of 2017.
Pascal in fact has already agreed to the bout, displaying his desires on his verified Twitter timeline. Barrera intends to take him up on his offer and has no problem traveling to Canada to make the fight happen.
“I’ve been trying to get a fight against Pascal since last year,” Barrera stated. “I have power and he has power. I need a win and he does too, so let’s do it. You already agreed to the fight so stop ducking me. You’ve been all talk so be a man of your word and make it happen. I am ready to fight you now. Let’s give the fans a great fight.”
With Barrera coming off his first career loss and Pascal losing 2 of his last 3, and all three losses between them coming against elite competition, there is no better time than now for these heavy hitters two face each other.
Leo Santa Cruz Set to Face Carl Frampton
Undefeated featherweight world champion Leo “El Terremoto” Santa Cruz (32-0-1, 18 KOs) and fellow unbeaten Irish star Carl “The Jackal” Frampton (22-0, 14 KOs) will meet with a world title and two perfect records at stake on Saturday, July 30 in the main event of a Premier Boxing Champions event from Barclays Center in Brooklyn. This bout will be shown live on Showtime.
Breazeale Confident Ahead of Fight with Joshua
Undefeated World Ranked Heavyweight Contender and 2012 U.S. Olympian Dominic “Trouble” Breazeale (17-0, 15 KOs) arrived at London Heathrow Airport on Thursday afternoon ahead of his world title challenge against IBF Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua (16-0, 16 KOs) on Saturday, June 25 on SHOWTIME BOXING INTERNATIONAL® from The O2 in London, live on SHOWTIME.
Confident as he’s been since the fight was announced, Breazeale was met by the local media upon his arrival.
“We’re two knockout artists so whoever lands first is going to win,” Breazeale said. “I know I got under his skin at the first press conference. He was rattled when we met and he knows I’m not some pushover like he’s had in the past.
“I am an opportunist and if I see an opportunity, I am going to take advantage of it. If he exposes something or shows a weakness of some sort, I plan to take advantage of it.
“I’ll go with the game plan, of course. My trainer, Manny Robles has done a great job developing a game plan during our training camp.
“I’ll hit him hard, hit him strong, hit him with everything, just be ready. We’ve had a great camp and it’s the most exciting part about camp is getting to the finish line and I am excited. I am ready to be victorious on June 25.”
HBO Boxing Preview of Klitschko vs. Fury
Wladimir Klitschko and Tyson Fury are set to rematch on Saturday, July 9th at 5:00 P.M. exclusively on HBO. They will be fighting in England in a rematch that saw Fury dethrone the heavyweight champion. HBO has posted the following video preview in anticipation of their bout.