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Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Lipinets vs. Kondo, Porter vs. Granados, Wilder vs. Stiverne


By: William Holmes

Last Saturday night Heavyweight Champion Anthony Joshua was able to successfully defend his belt against an overmatched Carlos Takam, but looked less than impressive in doing so.

This Saturday night the WBC Heavyweight Champion, Deontay Wilder, will look to defend his title against Bermane Stiverne in a rematch of a fight that Wilder convincingly won the first time.


Photo Credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME

Two other bouts will also be televised. Shawn Porter will look to get back into the welterweight title picture when he faces Adrian Granados in a WBC Welterweight Title eliminator. The first bout of the night will be for the vacant IBF Junior Welterweight Title and will be between Sergey Lipinets and Akihiro Kondo.

This card will take place at the Barclay’s Center in Brooklyn, New York and will be televised live on Showtime.

The following is a preview of the three televised bouts.

Sergey Lipinets (12-0) vs. Akihiro Kondo (29-6-1); IBF Junior Welterweight Title

The opening bout of the night will be between Sergey Lipinets, a highly ranked prospect from Kazakhstan, and Akihiro Kondo, a tough rugged veteran from Japan.

Lipinets, at 28, is four years younger than Kondo but will be giving up about one inch in height. They both have notable power. Lipinets has ten career stoppage victories including four of his past five bouts. Kondo has sixteen stoppage victories including five straight KO/TKO wins.

Lipinets has been fairly active and fought three times in 2016 and once in 2017. Kondo fought twice in 2017 and four times in 2016.

Lipinets is also a former WAKO World Full Contact Kicking Boxing Champion at Light Welterweight.

Lipinets, despite only having twelve professional fights, has only faced on opponent with a losing record since the start of his professional career. He has already defeated the likes of Clarence Booth, Leonardo Zappavigna, Walter Castillo, and Haskell Rhodes.

Kondo has never fought as a professional outside of Japan. More specifically, he never fought outside of Korakuen Hall in Japan as a professional. His list of defeated opponents is less than impressive and includes boxers such as Komsan Polsan, Shogo Yamaguchi, and Ryuji Migaki. His losses were to Nihito Arakawa, Yoshitaka Kato, Tomoya Yamada, and Rick Sismundo.

Kondo will likely be a tough opponent that has the ability to go the distance, but his six losses in Japan are hard to overlook as well as his lack of a notable victory over a well known opponent. Lipinets should win, but he may have to box conservatively to avoid a shocking knockout loss and win a safe decision victory.

Shawn Porter (27-2-1) vs. Adrian Granados (18-5-2); Welterweights

Shawn Porter is another boxer looking to get back into title contention as he faces Adrian Granados in the welterweight division.

Porter is two years older than Granados but still in his athletic prime at the age of thirty. He will be giving up two inches in height and about four and a half inches in reach to the taller Granados.

Both boxers has fairly successful amateur careers. Porter was a US National Golden Gloves Champion while Granados was a Junior Golden Gloves National Champ.

Both boxers have been fairly inactive the past two years. They both only fought once in 2016 and once in 2017.

Porter has higher number of knockouts. He has stopped seventeen of his opponents while Granados has stopped twelve. Porter also has the better resume as a professional. He has defeated the likes of Andre Berto, Adrien Broner, Erick Bone, Paul Malignaggi, Devon Alexander, Julio Diaz, Phil Lo Greco, and Ray Robinson. His losses were to Keith Thurman and Kell Brook.

Granados lost a close fight to Adrien Broner and scored a big upset over Amir Imam. However, he has lost to the likes of Brad Solomon, Felix Diaz, Frankie Gomez, and a Joe Juan Fuentes.

Granados is a viable opponent because of his close fight with Adrien Broner and his upset victor over Amir Imam, but Porter is too experienced to lose a fight over an opponent like Granados at this stage of his career.

Deontay Wilder (38-0) vs. Bermane Stiverne (25-2-1); WBC Heavyweight Title

The man event of the evening is between Deontay Wilder and Bermane Stiverne for the WBC Heavyweight Title. They previously met in January of 2015, a fight which went the full twelve rounds and saw Wilder win a comfortable decision.

Wilder was originally scheduled to face Luis Ortiz, but a positive drug test by Ortiz forced the cancellation of that bout.

Wilder will have a five inch height and a three inch reach advantage over Stiverne. He is also seven years younger than his opponent. Stiverne, at the age of thirty eight, will likely have a very hard time getting another title shot if he’s not successful on Saturday.

Wilder has unbelievable knockout power. He has stopped thirty seven of his opponents and the only man to take him to the distance was Bermane Stiverne. Stiverne has twenty one stoppage victories on his resume but has only won one of his last five fights by stoppage.

Inactivty will hurt Stiverne. This will be his first fight in nearly two years. He last fought on November 14th of 2015. Wilder fought twice in 2016 and once in 2017.

Both boxers have a decent amateur background, but Wilder is the only one of the two to have medaled in the Summer Olympics.

Wilder has defeated the likes of Gerald Washington, Chris Arreola, Artur Szpilka, Eric Molina, Bermane Stiverne, Malik Scott, Siarhei Liakhovich, Audley Harrison, and Kelvin Price. Stiverne has defeated the likes of Derric Rossy, Chris Arreola, Ray Austin, and Kertson Manswell. His losses were to Deontay Wilder and Demetrice King, who has a record of 11-15 at the time.

It’s hard to imagine Stiverne having a better shot now, at the age of thirty eight, than he did two years ago, especially with his inactivity. This wasn’t Wilder’s first choice for an opponent, but it’s an opponent that he should feel fairly confident that he can beat, again.

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Showtime Championship Boxing Results: Charlo defends title by devastating KO; Porter wins by 9th round TKO


Showtime Championship Boxing Results: Charlo defends title by devastating KO; Porter wins by 9th round TKO

By: Matthew N. Becher

Premier Boxing Champions presented its second major welterweight matchup in 2017, again at the growing boxing venue the Barclays Center in Brooklyn,NY. Andre Berto and Shawn Porter are both former welterweight world champions, with the winner getting a chance to take on the unified welterweight champ, Keith Thurman.

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The leadup fight is between two Jr. Midleweights from the great state of Texas. Jermell Charlo, one half of the famous “Charlo Twins”, will defend his WBC title for the first time, against a very game Charles Hatley. Hatley has only fought outside of his home state of Texas once in his career, when he went to Australia and beat an aging Anthony Mundine over 17 months ago.

Jermell Charlo v. Charles Hatley: WBC Jr. Middleweight

Hatley came out a bit more wild in the opening round. It was easy to see who was the champion, with Charlo landing the much more effective, crisp punches. Hatley was the more aggressive fighter, as Charlo was content in countering and waiting on a heavy shot. Charlo recieved a cut over his left eye due to an accidental clash of heads in the second round.

In the third round Charlo landed a beautiful three punch combination to knock down Hatley. Hatley was definitley hurt, but was able to survive the round by moving and holding appropriately.

Charlo is able to land a one, two, left, right to the head of Hatley at will. Charlo cuts off the ring with no problem and can even fight backing up and using his supperior speed to counter Hatley.

In the fifth round Hatley just decided to continualy move around and around the ring, not engaging with Charlo. Charlo was able to use a stinging left jab that snapped Hatley’s head back every time.

Charlo decided to unleash a barrage of punches in the sixth round and ultimately ended the fight by knocking Hatley out of the ring with a devastating right hand to the chin.

Charlo defended his title and proved that he was on another level than Charles Hatley.

Charlo KO6 0:32

Shawn Porter v. Andre Berto: Welterweight

Neither of these veterans decided to come out and feel the other out, it was a rough and tough battle from the first bell. Both Berto and Porter fought and clinched, wrestling around to show the other who was the stronger or more dominant man.

Berto was just physically dominated by Porter in the second round. Porter bum rushed his way in, got Berto on the ropes and used his head, elbows and just unloaded punches. In the trenches, Porter ended up coming away with a nasty cut over his left eye, from a headbutt. This didn’t bother Porter in the slightest, as he put Berto to the canvas at the end of the round with a right hand to Berto’s temple.

Porter just puts his head down and bumrushes Berto into the ropes. Porter is mentally frustrated by not being able to box and continually fighting with his back against the ropes. The recklesness of Porters sytle is he ended up getting cuts over both of his eyes from headbutts.

The ugliness of the fight now has both fighters with bad cuts over their eyes. Porter is an overwhelming swarm of a fighter, pushing forward , with no regard to headclashes or shots landed back. Berto, is having trouble with the blood flowing into his eye. Porter is fighing thinking the fight could end at any moment and go to the scorecards, Berto is trying to figure out a way to get back to his gameplan.

In the seventh round, Berto has been landing his counter shots much more accurately. Those punches come very few and far between unfortunately, as Porter has the advantage of power and continues to lead with his jab and braun.

Porter came out in the eighth round and used Berto like a heavybag. Porter immediately got Berto on the ropes and just unloaded against the body and head. Berto didn’t seem to be hurt, but he was never able to get anything started at all.

Porter, who seemed to have an endless supply of energy, rushed Berto and in an ugly exchange between the two fighters, Porter was able to knock Berto down for the second time of the fight. Berto complained about a clash of heads that left him seemingly dazed. Porter rushed in again, got Berto stuck in a corner and the ref stepped in and stopped the fight in the 9th round.

Porter TKO9 1:31

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PBC on Showtime Preview: Andre Berto vs. Shawn Porter, Jermell Charlo vs. Charles Hatley


PBC on Showtime Preview: Andre Berto vs. Shawn Porter, Jermell Charlo vs. Charles Hatley
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night in Brooklyn, New York Showtime will televise at least two bouts in the welterweight and junior middleweight divisions live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

The main event will be between two top contenders, Shawn “Showtime” Porter and Andre Berto in a WBC Welterweight Title eliminator. The co-main event will be for the WBC Junior Middleweight Title between Jermell Charlo and Charles Hatley.

Other boxers on the undercard include WBO Women’s Bantamweight champion Amanda Serrano, Jose Miguel Borrego, Julian Sosa, and Richardson Hitchins.

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The following is a preview of the Porter vs. Berto and Charlo vs. Hatley bouts.

Jermell Charlo (28-0) vs. Charles Hatley (26-1-1); WBC Junior Middleweight Title

This bout is between two boxers who should be somewhat familiar with each other, Jermell Charlo and Charles Hatley. Charlo and Hatley are both Texas natives and Charlo hails from Houston while Hatley hails from Dallas.

Charlo, the younger twin brother of Jermall, will be five years younger than Hatley and will have about a one inch height and reach advantage. Hatley, however, appears to be the harder puncher of the two. Hatley has stopped eighteen of his opponents and four of his past five wins have come by TKO. Charlo has only stopped thirteen of his opponents and only two of his past five opponents were stopped.

Both boxers have not been very active recently. Charlo only fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015, while Hatley did not fight in all of 2016 and fought twice in 2015.

They both had decent amateur careers, but Hatley was the more accomplished amateur. Hatley was the 2007 US National Amateur Welterweight Champion and the 2008 Olympic alternate. Charlo won the bronze medal in the 2005 Junior Olympics.

Charlo has the better resume as a professional. He has beaten the likes of John Jackson, Joachim Alcine, Vanes Martirosyan, Mario Lozano, Charles Bellamy, Gabriel Rosado, Demetrius Hopkins, and Harry Joe Yorgey. Hatley has beaten the likes of Emmanuel Augustus, Anthony Mundine, Saul Roman, and Jose Flores. His lone loss was to Lanardo Tyner, and he failed to go the distance in that bout.

At the age of thirty one and not having fought in over a year, ring rust is a serious concern for Hatley. Charlo is coming off a very good win against Jackson and momentum and age is on his side.

This should be a close bout early, but Charlo should take over in the later rounds.

Shawn Porter (26-2-1) vs. Andre Berto (31-4); WBC Welterweight Eliminator

This is a bout between two of the top contenders in the welterweight division that are looking for another chance at a welterweight title shot. Another loss for either boxer could spell the end of any hope of fighting for a title in the near future.
Both Porter and Berto had successful amateur careers. Porter was a World Golden Gloves Champion and came up short in qualifying for the 2008 US Olympic Team. Berto was a National Golden Gloves Champion, a bronze medalist in the 2003 World Championships, and represented Haiti in the 2004 Summer Olympics.

Both boxers have had some difficulties as of late. Berto has gone 3-3 in his last six bouts while Porter has gone 4-2. Porter has losses to the likes of Keith Thurman and Kell Brook by close decisions. Berto has lost to the likes of Floyd Mayweather Jr., Robert Guerrero, Victor Ortiz, and Jesus Soto Karass.

Berto appears to have the harder punch of the two. He has stopped twenty four of his opponents while Porter has only stopped sixteen. However, Porter is five years younger than Berto and will have a half an inch height advantage and about an inch reach advantage.

Neither boxer has been very active the past two years. They both fought once in 2016 and twice in 2015.

Berto’s career started off strong but has since fizzled a little bit. He has wins over Victor Ortiz, Josesito Lopez, Jan Zaveck, Carlos Quintana, Juan Urango, Luis Collazo and Freddy Hernandez.

Porter’s two losses could have gone either way, and he has defeated the likes of Adrien Broner, Paulie Malignaggi, Devon Alexander, Julio Diaz, Phil Lo Greco, and Alfonso Gomez.

This should be a good bout and as typical for most Shawn Porter fights, will likely be very rough and chippy. Porter should be given the edge based on his edge and recent performance, but Berto has the power to stop the fight early if he lands a punch cleanly.

This writer believes Porter will win a close, and at times ugly, decision.

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Best 10 Boxing Fights of 2016


Best 10 Boxing Fights of 2016
By: Jordan Seward

With the new year approaching it’s time to reflect on the best boxing action of 2016, so in no particular order….

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Orlando Salido vs Francisco Vargas

The two Mexicans treated us to a classic right up to the final bell for Vargas’ (23-0-2) WBC World Super Featherweight title. Vargas, coming off the back of Fight of the Year for 2015 faced a true, steely warrior in the 36-year-old Salido (43-13-4). It was a back-and-fourth slug fest between two champions who don’t know when to quit. In the end the pair couldn’t be separated and the judges correctly scored it a draw.

Tony Bellew vs Ilunga Makabu

The real life rocky story that saw Bellew (28-2-1) finally crowned a world champion. Just after starring in the new rocky film ‘The Bomber’ got his third bite at the cherry facing a dangerous and feared Congolese who had chalked up 18 knockouts in 19 fights. A packed crowed inside his beloved Everton football club’s stadium were stunned when Makabu (19-2) sent Bellew rolling over at the end of the first. The Everton man climbed off the canvas Balboa esque and rallied to stop Makabu in the third with a flourish of heavy punches to claim the vacant WBC World Cruiserweight strap.

Dillian Whyte vs Dereck Chisora

This one had it all. Filled with controversy from the start these two Heavyweights threw everything but the kitchen sink. A table was thrown though. At a press conference. Which, as a result meant the British title wasn’t on the line. But after all the talk, the bad mouthing and the attempted scrapping Whyte (20-1) and Chisora (26-7) done it properly in the ring and fought out a clean and action-packed-12-rounder. Both men were rocked and absorbed a lot of punishment, but Whyte’s superior stamina was just about enough to nick it for him on the judges’ scorecard by split decision.

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Keith Thurman vs Shawn Porter

Thurman (27-0) was getting in the ring with probably the best opponent he’s faced. The only man to previously have defeated Porter (26-2-1) was Kell Brook, but, in a fierce competitive fight, Thurman successfully defended his WBA World Welterweight title dishing out Porter’s second loss of his career with a 115-113 unanimous decision. Although the announcement was greeted by booing, the stats suggested Thurman deservedly had his hand raised at the end, landing 43.6% of his punches while his opponent made 35.6%.

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Andre Ward vs Sergey Kovalev

The fight that everyone scored differently. It was a fight we all wanted as soon as Ward made the jump up from Super-Middleweight. The defensive suave of Ward (31-0) met the aggressive power of ‘The Krusher’ (30-1-1) at the T-Mobile Arena, in Las Vegas. The American, fighting on home turf, was put down in the second round for only the second time in his illustrious career. But Ward, as Ward does, after falling behind on the cards managed to take the second half of the fight and claim Kovalev’s WBO, IBF and WBA Super World Light Heavyweight titles by unanimous decision.

After Capturing Light Heavyweight Titles, What is Next for Andre Ward?

Carl Frampton vs Leo Santa Cruz

After unifying his IBF super-bantamweight title by outpointing Scott Quigg, the Northern Irishmen capped off his impressive year by adding Leo Santa Cruz’s (32-1-1) WBA Super World Featherweight belt. ‘The Jackal’ (23-0) jumped up a weight division and battled it out with the Mexican champion in an absolute barn burner. After a hard and punishing 12 rounds it went to the judges’ scorecards and Frampton, was given the nod. Now, just for us, they’re doing it all again at the MGM Grand on the 28th January. Not a bad way to start the new year.

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Hosea Burton vs Frank Buglioni

Words were exchanged between the pair in what was a heated build up to this Light-Heavyweight contest for the British title. But when the fighting started it quickly turned in to a very watchable and enjoyable scrap. Both Burton (18-1) and Buglioni (19-2-1) continuously plowed forwards, in attempts to assert their dominance. They were both taking serious damage and in the twelfth-round Burton’s chickens came home to roost. The 28-year-old was slowing down and deserved to hear the final bell but with just one minute left in the bout Buglioni landed some hurtful blows and the ref waved it off.

Thomas Williams Jr. vs Edwin Rodriguez

A fiery, hard fought contest… while it lasted. At the StubHub Center, on the undercard of Andre Berto’s knockout win against Victor Ortiz, Rodriguez, (28-2) displayed courage, grit, determination, and, a chin. In this two-rounder, it was Williams Jr (20-2) who was landing the more powerful and hurtful shots but a number of times Rodriguez remained upright and proudly came firing back. In the end, it took a monster left hook to knock the resolute 31-year-old out.

Gennady Golovkin vs Kell Brook

As far as unexpected fights go, this one took the biscuit. You couldn’t have called it. This was not a fight many had in mind, but, when it was made it was all the talk. The IBF World Welterweight champion, Brook, jumped up two weight division to face the feared Middleweight kingpin at the O2 Arena. Looking in great shape and as confident as ever the Englishman made a great start to the fight. However, as the fight went on we began to realise Brook wouldn’t be making history as Golovkin’s power started to take its toll and Brook’s trainer, Dominic Ingle threw in the towel stopping proceedings in the fifth round.

Anthony Crolla vs Ismael Barroso

After prizing away the WBA World Lightweight title from Darleys Perez in their second meeting, Crolla, (31-5-3)made his first defence against the man who, effectively, sent world title challenger Kevin Mitchell into retirement. As expected, the Venezuelan (19-1-2) started strong and, typical of a Joe Gallagher fighter, Crolla did not. He absorbed some early punishment and probably lost the first five rounds. It became clear after six though, that Crolla’s tactics were spot on, as the challenger noticeably began to tire. He had thrown all he had and was on empty, Crolla seized his chance and overwhelmed his opponent, eventually stopping him in the seventh.

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Shawn Porter is Checking Names Off the List


Shawn Porter is Checking Names Off the List
By: Kirk Jackson

Shawn Porter 26-2-1 (16 KO’s) fell a bit short in his bid for another world title, losing to WBA welterweight champion Keith Thurman 27-0 (22 KO’s) in a closely contested bout, which is surely a leading candidate for the fight of the year.

After such a grueling affair, it’s expected both combatants would probably prefer a break to recuperate from the battle. Porter is different from the norm.

PBC on NBC Results: Shawn Porter Defeats Adrien Broner, Spence Smashes Lo Greco

While Thurman appears open to a rematch with Porter down the line, his eyes seem locked in on current WBC welterweight champion Danny Garcia 32-0 (18 KO’s). Thurman has the goal of unification within the division, in addition to defeating another father/son duo.
While the intent of unification should be applauded, who knows how long that process will take, if the match-up between Thurman and Garcia even takes place?

Also to take into consideration, the WBA ordered the winner of the Thurman vs. Porter fight to face interim WBA welterweight champion David Avanesyan 22-1-1 (11 KO’s).

The father/son duo of Kenny and Shawn Porter has other plans.

“I don’t want to sit out for six to eight months, definitely not another year,” said head trainer Kenny Porter in an interview with FightHype.

“It is his [Shawn] livelihood to work out; this is what he does. We’re ready to go, we will be ready to go in 90 days. The only reason I’m saying 90 days is because I know it will take at least that much of a promotion for them to put a fight together.”

According to Kenny Porter, head trainer and father to Shawn, there is a hit list of names he would like to see his son battle.

The Porter Hit List:
✓ Keith Thurman
✓ Adrien Broner
✓ Paulie Malignaggi
o Danny Garcia
o Andre Berto
o John Molina
o Ruslan Provodnikov
o Brandon Rios

Out of the eight names on the list, Shawn Porter fought three and defeated two. The chances of Porter securing a rematch with Broner and Malignaggi appear unlikely.

Malignaggi has an upcoming bout towards the end of the month against Gabriel Bracero (hopefully a retirement bout), it may be safe to say Malignaggi probably does not want to re-enter the house of pain that is Shawn Porter.

From a stylistic standpoint, Broner would be better off avoiding a return bout with Porter. Broner has yet to develop an alternate strategy for dealing with constant aggression, which is something Porter excels at.

As mentioned earlier, Thurman has plans for Garcia. Speaking of Garcia, he may be in talks to fight Andre Berto, another name off the Porter hit list.

John Molina is coming off an impressive performance, recently defeating Ruslan Provodnikov. Either Molina or Provodnikov is a viable option and a likely win for Porter. The only issue could be the discussion of weight.

Porter is a welterweight, while Molina and Provodnikov are a weight class lower at junior welterweight. The last name to be addressed on the hit list and probably the most likely match-up is Brandon Rios.
Rios is a welterweight, currently does not have a fight although he is training, is looking for an opponent and has the perfect style to suit Porter and the fans.

Win, lose or draw, Rios likes to come forward and is very aggressive. Porter and Rios have similar styles with slight distinctions; both fighters are comparable height/size and with their arm reach. The match-up has fight of the year written all over it.

Something to keep in mind, Porter is still ranked as the No. 2 welterweight according to the WBA. Porter may want to consider adding Avanesyan to the list and challenging him.

It’s uncertain if Thurman will fight his mandatory next. They may strip Thurman, give him an extension, force a title eliminator between Avanesyan and Porter, either way, Porter can be placed in a position of benefit.

As time unfolds we’ll see what transpires. What do you make of Porter’s hit list? Who would you like to see Porter face next?

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PBC on CBS Results: Thurman Scrapes by with Controversial Decision, Hurd Stops Molina


PBC on CBS Results: Thurman Scrapes by with Controversial Decision, Hurd S
By: William Holmes

Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions series was broadcast on CBS live from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York. Two fights were televised tonight and featured a WBA World Welterweight Championship between Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter as the main event of the night, and featured a co-main event between undefeated prospects Jarrett Hurd and Oscar Molina in the junior middleweight division.

Abner Mares was originally scheduled to fight in the co-main event of the evening, but had to pull out at the last minute due to an injury. The Hurd and Molina fight got bumped up to the co-main event as a result.

Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter

The undercard featured several highly touted prospects. Regis Prograis looked impressive in his fourth round stoppage of Luiz Florez and David Benavidez was dominant over Francy Ntetu, despite the fact fans disapproved of the stoppage.

Heather “The Heat” Hardy continued to grow her fan base with an exciting decision over Kirstie Simmons in the featherweight division.

The attendance for the fight was 12,718 and most of the seats were filled by the start of the first televised fight.

The first televised bout of the night was between Jarrett Hurd (17-0) and Oscar Molina (13-0-1) in the junior middleweight division.

Hurd’s size advantage was evident at the opening bell and he was able to use his size advantage to push Molina back with a steady jab in the opening round. He was able to stun Molina and knock him down with a good counter right uppercut, but Molina was able to beat the count, get back to his feet, and survive the round.

Hurd patiently picked Molina apart in the second and third rounds. Molina was able to land some decent shots on Hurd, but he lacked the power to hurt him.

Hurd picked up his activity in the fourth round and was able to deflect most of Molina’s shots. The fifth round featured some good exchanged and both boxers were able to land their shots, but Hurd was landing the harder shots. The action in a phone booth continued in the sixth round as both fighters seemed content with trading shots.

Both boxers dug in deep with their punches in the seventh round, but it was one of Molina’s best rounds of the night and his double left hook worked well for him, but Hurd was able to have a strong eighth round and re-establish control of the bout and had Molina hurt at the end of the round.

Molina needed a knockout by the final two rounds to win the fight, but Hurd dominated and had badly bruised the face of Molina. Hurd unleashed several combinations in the final round and had Molina hurt before the referee jumped in to save Molina from himself.

Jarrett Hurd impresses on national television and wins by TKO at 2:02 of the tenth round.

Afterward Hurd stated, “Molina is a great fighter. This is definitely a big win for my career. He was taking a lot of shots, but he knew how to survive.”

The main event of the night was for the WBA World Welterweight Championship and was between Keith Thurman (26-0) and Shawn Porter (26-1-1).

The crowd and energy was high for this bout and both boxers appeared to be jumpy in the opening round. Porter was reaching for his shots and at times overly aggressive in the first round, while Thurman was able to land some clean counter right crosses on Porter.

Porter had a strong second round and kept the fight in close and beat up Thurman by the ropes and was very effective with his body work. Both boxers threw bombs in the third round and neither established control in the first two minutes, but Thurman landed a bomb of a right hook near the end of the round that got the crowd on its feet.

Thurman had a very strong fourth round and had Porter on the defensive with his check left hook. They had a vicious exchange in the middle of the ring in the fourth, but Thurman was able to briefly buckle the knees of Porter during the exchange.

The fifth and sixth rounds were close and at times it looked like Porter was a bull and Thurman was the matador, but Porter was the aggressor in these rounds and was able to pound the body of Thurman whenever his back was against the ropes.

Porter had another strong round in the seventh round and was able to land hard right crosses and decent body shots. The eighth round was close and could have been scored either way, but Porter was able to land some thudding body shots while Porter was able to land hard check left hooks.

Porter had a very strong ninth round and was able to open up a cut near Thurman’s left eye and had him on wobbly legs by the ropes by the end of the round. The tenth round was action packed. Thurman was able to momentarily stumble the legs of Porter near the end of the round with a hard left hook, but Porter answered back with hard combinations of his own.

Thurman was able to land a huge left hook in the eleventh round that got the crowd on it’s feet, but he was fighting backwards most of the round and did not want to engage Porter in close range.

By the final round this bout could have been scored in either boxer’s favor, as for many rounds were close, but Porter appeared the land more punches in the last round while Thurman appeared to land the harder shots.

This fight screams for a rematch, but the judges scored it 115-113 on all three scorecards for Keith Thurman.

The crowd thought otherwise and booed, loudly, the judges decision.

Undercard Quick Results:

Heather Hardy (17-0) defeated Kirstie Simmons (8-2) by decision in the featherweight division with scores of 79-73, 78-74, and 78-74.

David Benavidez (15-0) defeated Francy Ntetu (16-1) by TKO in the light heavyweight division at 1:30 of the seventh round.

Jonathan Alonso (10-0) defeated Brian Jones (13-6) by decision in the junior welterweight division with scores of 60-54 on all three scorecards.

Regis Prograis (18-0) defeated Luis Florez (21-4) by TKO at 1:47 of the fourth round for the NABF Junior Welterweight TItle

Josue Vargas (5-0) defeated Ryan Picou (2-10-1) by decision in the junior welterweight division with scores of 40-36 on all three scorecards.

Nicklaus Flaz (3-0) wins by knockout at 1:13 of the first round over Mack Babb (1-7) in the junior middleweight division

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Keith Thurman vs. Shawn Porter and the Start of a New Era


Keith Thurman vs. Shawn Porter and the Start of a New Era
By: Kirk Jackson

Finally, after talk and speculation, rescheduled dates and car accidents, we’ve arrived to the anticipated, precipice of warfare between the world’s top welterweights.

The battleground is The Barclays Center, Brooklyn, New York.

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The battle combatants; Keith “One Time” Thurman 26-0 (22 KO’s) and Shawn “Showtime” Porter 26-1-1 (16 KO’s).

This match-up brings much intrigue and can have a significant impact on the welterweight division. This is a fight that can get the ball rolling so to speak.

The welterweight division is stacked and fans are yearning for a series of fights to transpire, pitting the best against the best.

We recently witnessed the exit of two historically great welterweights, Floyd Mayweather and Manny Pacquiao. Although it would not be a surprise if either Mayweather or Pacquiao suddenly decided to come back for another fight.

Omitting those two names, the division is stacked with a wealth of talent; WBC welterweight champion Danny Garcia, IBF welterweight champion Kell Brook, WBO welterweight champion Jessie Vargas, two division champion Robert Guerrero, three division champion Adrien Broner, two division champion Timothy Bradley, two division champion Amir Khan, undefeated contender Errol Spence and there’s a few other notable fighters in the division as well.

Of course we have two fighters leading the charge to represent the new welterweight era, Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter.

Thurman is defending his WBA welterweight title and aiming to establish himself as the best fighter in the welterweight division.

Porter is seeking redemption from his defeat to Brook in the form of gaining another world title and wants to firmly plant his declaration as the division’s premier fighter.

Fitting this fight will be broadcasted across network television under the Premier Boxing Champions banner.

The odds makers regard this fight as a close to even match-up with Thurman slightly favored, as each fighter holds certain advantages and distinct styles.

According to a who’s who of the welterweight division, the fighter who will emerge victorious is a toss-up:

Robert Guerrero: “This is a fight the fans are going to love watching. Both Thurman and Porter bring exciting styles to the ring. I think if Porter can keep the fight on the inside he’ll have a better chance to come out victorious. But Keith Thurman is a very smart and powerful fighter and will make the right adjustments. I just think Thurman is going to outbox Porter. I’m picking Thurman to win by decision in a very tough fight.”

Danny Garcia: “I think this is a great matchup. Thurman has the boxing ability and the movement while Shawn Porter is the aggressor and he’s going to bring the heat. To be honest with you it’s a 50-50 fight, but I would give the edge to Keith Thurman by a very close decision.”

Kell Brook: “This is a great fight, one I can’t wait to watch. If Shawn can stick to his boxing I think he can become world champion again on points, but Keith is heavy-handed and he could walk Shawn onto one – it’s really a pick ’em fight for me.”

Errol Spence Jr.: “I think this is a great fight between young fighters with good skill. Shawn throws a lot of punches while Thurman is a boxer who can punch too. I know Shawn will be aggressive and it should make for a great fight. If Keith can box and keep Shawn Porter on the outside I see Keith Thurman winning. If Shawn stays on the inside and stays in the chest of Keith, I see him winning.”

Andre Berto: “Shawn is going to come, but I think Keith will be on his toes and box but also drop hard shots as well when Shawn comes in. Keith can be very versatile in there and has a lot of great skills, while Shawn is more like a bull. Keith will hurt or knock Shawn down but will keep coming all night.’’ (Source USA Today).

Porter possesses the frame of a well-conditioned football player; resembling a short, stocky, rugged linebacker. His style of fighting plays off of that distinction, as he likes to blitz his opponents with aggression, utilizing his physical prowess and peak conditioning to overwhelm his opponents.

Despite standing the same height as Thurman and possessing a slight reach advantage, Porter prefers to fight in the trenches and that is to be expected when he faces Thurman.

Thurman is a power puncher living by his mantras, “All it takes is one time,” and “KO’s for life!”
But Thurman is quite the boxer as well; displaying the ability to adjust and adapt his game plan in previous fights against Diego Chaves, Jan Zaveck and Leonard Bundu.

Expect Thurman to set the pace whether as the matador, or as the one leading the charge. He wants to dictate and control the action.

There are many variables to this fight. If Thurman can catch Porter coming in and consistently create separation to allow his offense to thrive, he should win. If Porter can implement his imposing style and take this fight to the trenches, making the fight scrappy and ugly while attacking Thurman’s body, he should win. The fight can play out in various ways.

Ultimately this boils down to intangibles and who can better utilize them.

The great intangible Porter possesses is his strong will and determination. Despite constantly being heralded as the underdog and facing technical disadvantages in many match-ups, Porter typically rises to the occasion and perseveres relying on his determination and physicality.

An overlooked intangible Thurman possesses is his ring intelligence. Intelligence allows a fighter to pinpoint the opposing fighter’s weaknesses; allows the fighter to adapt to various situations and ultimately carves the path towards victory.

Thurman can make the necessary adjustments. Although he may not stop Porter within the distance, Thurman has enough power to keep Porter off, where he can consistently create space and find his range to land scoring punches.

The goal of Porter is to overwhelm and wear down opponents, but he will be on the receiving end of energy sapping punches for the more powerful and accurate Thurman.

Expect this to be a competitive, highly contested bout throughout, with Thurman creating enough separation as to who is the superior fighter en route to unanimous decision.

Nearly as important as the fight itself is what happens after the fight. The welterweight division has somewhat been at a standstill since the conclusion of the Mayweather-Pacquiao era and this event can trigger a series of significant fights moving forward.

Potentially there is a match-up featuring Kell Brook vs. Jessie Vargas later in the fall. Perhaps we’ll see the winner of Thurman/Porter take on the winner of Brook/Vargas.

Or we’ll see the winner of Thurman/Porter take on Danny Garcia or Adrien Broner or Errol Spence.

This match-up featuring Thurman and Porter should showcase the very best of what the welterweight division has to offer post Mayweather-Pacquiao era and is a nice transition into the new era of welterweights.

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PBC on CBS Preview: Thurman vs. Porter, Hurd vs. Molina


PBC on CBS Preview: Thurman vs. Porter, Hurd vs. Molina
By: William Holmes

On Saturday night Al Haymon’s Premier Boxing Champions will put on one of their best cards on network television of the year as Keith Thurman defends his WBA Welterweight Title against Shawn Porter in the main event of the evening.

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Abner Mares was originally scheduled to face Jesus Cuellar in the co-main event of the evening, but an injury to Abner Mares forced him to withdraw. Instead, fight fans will be get to see two prospects battle it out in the junior middleweight division when Jarret Hurd takes on Oscar Molina.

The Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York has been a boxing hotspot since the Barclays Center inception and it will be the host site for Saturday’s fight card.

Jarrett Hurd (17-0) vs. Oscar Molina (13-0-1); Junior Middleweights

Jarrett “Swift” Hurd first burst into the national spotlight when he scored an upset stoppage victory over Frank Galarza, and win over Molina could lead to a big fight in the junior middleweight division.

His opponent, Oscar Molina, will be the third straight undefeated opponent he has faced in a row and is also known for his power. Hurd has stopped eleven of his opponents and four of his past five fights failed to go the distance. Molina has ten stoppage wins, and three of his past five fights failed to go the distance.

Hurd is twenty five years old and Molina is twenty six, but Hurd will have a four inch height advantage and a six and a half inch reach advantage. They both have been very active the past two years. Hurd fought three times in 2015 and four times in 2014 while Molina fought twice in 2014 and four times in 2015.

Hurd has the better professional record so far. He has beaten the likes of Jeff Lentz, Frank Galarza, and Eric Mitchell. He’s also never been knocked down during his professional career. Molina has not beaten many names of note, but has defeated the likes of Adrien Torres and drew with Domonique Dolton.

The only noteworthy advantage Molina has over Hurd is that he fought in the 2012 Olympics for Mexico. However, Hurd is in the middle of an impressive winning streak and his height, reach, and power will be too much for Molina to handle over the course of ten rounds.

Keith Thurman (26-0) vs. Shawn Porter (26-1-1); WBA Welterweight Title

The main event of the evening is the best fight the PBC can put on in the welterweight division.

Keith Thurman, the current WBA Welterweight Champion, is considered by many to be the best boxer in the welterweight division now that Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr. have retired. However, Shawn Porter recently beat Adrien Broner, the man many people felt would replace Floyd Mayweather Jr.

Porter is twenty nine years old and two years older than Thurman. Thurman will have a slight half an inch height advantage on Porter and Porter will have a slight half an inch reach advantage on Thurman.
They both fought twice in 2015 and in 2014. Thurman has the heavier hands, as he has stopped twenty two of his opponents while Porter has only stopped sixteen. However, as the level of competition that Thurman faces continues to get better his knockouts seems to be happening less often. Two of the past three opponents that Thurman has faced went the distance.

Keith Thurman and Shawn Porter both experienced success as an amateur. Porter was a US National Golden Gloves Champion and Thurman was an Olympic Trials Runner Up.

They both have an impressive resume as a professional. Thurman has defeated the likes of Luiz Collazo, Robert Guerrero, Leonard Bundu, Jesus Soto Karass, Diego Chavez, and Jan Zaveck. Porter has defeated Adrien Broner, Paul Malignaggi, Devon Alexander, Phil Lo Greco, and Alfonso Gomez. Porter’s lone loss was to Kell Brook.

This should be an excellent fight and could go either way. Thurman has to be considered the favorite based on his undefeated record and power. Porter is a physical and in your face type of boxer, but he can get sloppy at times and Thurman is the type of boxer that will eat up your mistakes.

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Barclays Center Is Becoming A Boxing Hotspot


Barclays Center Is Becoming A Boxing Hotspot
By: Sean Crose

Danny Garcia fights there regularly. So does Chris Algieri. Deontay Wilder laid out Artur Szpilka there in frightening fashion last winter and then Tyson Fury got in the ring and made a scene. Madison Square Garden may indeed be the Mecca of Boxing, but Brooklyn’s Barclays Center is becoming a boxing hot spot of its own. Although the relatively new – it just opened in 2012 – arena hasn’t hosted the kind of major bouts that constitute superfights, it’s proven to be a fan friendly, and affordable, outlet. Sure enough, this weekend’s Keith Thurman – Shawn Porter throwdown is perfectly suited for the Center.

Boxing - Open Workout

A major, relevant matchup that’s not quite big enough for pay per view yet exciting enough on paper to warrant some real attention, Thurman-Porter truly has the makings of a fight that’s “for the fans.” You don’t have to be well connected to get in to see this one live, either. While it may not be cheap to get to any professional sporting event, Thurman-Porter at the Barclays Center is still relatively affordable. Expect a good sized crowd this Saturday when the fight airs live on CBS – the first fight to do so in primetime since the Ali era. Again, this is a high quality matchup (hopefully the fight will live up to its potential).

When one steps back and observes things objectively, however, the Barclays Center is a perfect outlet for boxing in the northeast. The sweet science may not be what it was in the stretch between New Jersey and New Hampshire, but Brooklyn, where the Barclays is located, is perfectly suited to draw in local fans. For the greater New York area is home to large numbers of African Americans, Puerto Ricans, Eastern Europeans, Russians and Irish. And each of those demographics have fight friendly populations within their ranks. There’s a reason to have fights take place in Brooklyn, after all, rather than a few miles up the road on the Connecticut “Gold Coast.”

The main reason the Barclays may be becoming a boxing hot bed, however, is the fact that the people who run it want it to be. If one wants to host fights, one simply has to show a willingness to. And the Barclays has been willing to host fight card after fight card since its opening several years ago. Naturally, fight fans and promoters have returned the favor. Something must be working, otherwise both the Barclays and the boxing world would cease working together. Business is business, after all.

Here’s hoping business keeps rolling along in Brooklyn.

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Always On The Cusp: Shawn Porter


Always On The Cusp: Shawn Porter
By: Brandon Bernica

Shawn Porter sits on the brink of stardom. Coming into Saturday’s high-powered matchup with fellow rising star Keith Thurman, Porter is familiar with his own burgeoning prospects. Yet like many fallen stars in the boxing universe, prospects often diverge from how reality actually plays out.

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See, a look into Shawn’s past, and you can earmark numerous instances where he appeared ready to break out. He held his own in sparring with the great Manny Pacquiao during the Pacman’s prime, casting hopes on his future potential. But it took longer than expected for his career to catch the break it needed. He finally won a world title against Devon Alexander in 2013. After obliterating Paulie Malignaggi in a menacing 4th round knockout, Porter’s career looked poised for greatness. Then, Kell Brook took Porter’s belt in an upset victory, forcing him to reassess his journey in the sport.

Most fighters would slump after losing their aura of invincibility, but Porter took it in stride. He went on to defeat Adrien Broner in the Battle for Ohio last June. Once again, Porter’s career projected highly. So what exactly was his reward for winning such a high-profile fight? A year lay-off. Porter can attribute that year’s worth of missed earnings to Al Haymon, who inexplicably ignored his rise in favor of Broner’s marketability. What was arguably the biggest win of his career turned into stifled momentum.

What is holding “Showtime” back? Is it fate’s cruel vendetta against him? Or were his losses that untimely and impactful? My guess is that it’s a little bit of both. While his defeats cost him an unscathed record, many fighters in the sport take greater hits with lesser resumes to fall back on. And his persona? Charming nice-guy, engaging, likable. Though the sport often favors the villains that can turn hatred into viewership, there isn’t any reason why a talented good-guy who’s well-spoken can’t fit into boxing’s diverse narrative.

One thing we know about Shawn, though: he relishes the doubts. You can see it in the way he fights with his head down, pushing the pressure like a man unwilling to accept mediocrity. Somehow, that lack of fulfillment drives him to find one more shot at glory. And that shot may stand in the form of Keith Thurman come Saturday night.

Keith finds himself in the same predicament as Shawn, grasping for the upper echelons. Perhaps the stature Thurman he carries, along with the respect earned from beating him are the hurdles needed for Porter’s breakout performance. After all, Batman didn’t earn his name destroying weak minions and guards; he fought bosses and won a legacy. Shawn will have to carefully push the pace against a dangerous puncher in Thurman if he wants to make the most of this opportunity. Much like Porter’s career, this fight is craving for someone to take charge and control the action. Maybe it’s finally time for Shawn to grow into both capacities.

Shawn Porter happens to be from Cleveland, Ohio. Cleveland sports struggle to garner the same respect Porter often does from fans. In the midst of a recent 52 year title drought, the city felt cursed, narrowly missing championships year after year. The truth is, sometimes fate IS cruel. But Sunday night, LeBron James gave a virtuoso performance, shelling out every inch of effort to break this status quo and lead the Cleveland Cavaliers to a victory. Maybe Porter is ready to trample the expectations as well. Maybe skill does eventually supersede misfortune. If desire is any prerequisite, there’s no doubting that he will follow in LeBron’s footsteps to glory soon.

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Keith Thurman – Self Promoter


Keith Thurman – Self Promoter
By: Sean Crose

Make no mistake about it – self promotion is BIG in today’s society. Oh, it’s always been big, but it seems to be particularly popular in this era. This, of course, is an age where people are famous…just cuz. Sure enough, talent and ability often take a back seat when personality and showmanship is in play (as anyone who has spent any time in the workplace can attest). When a person has some talent to at least somewhat back up his or her self-promotion, however, it can prove to be a formidable combination indeed. Enter one Keith Thurman.

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An undefeated welterweight with a powerful shot, speed and a strong ability to put his punches together, the WBA world welterweight champion is certainly worth paying attention to in this (supposedly) post Mayweather-Pacquiao era. Thurman has another weapon at his disposal, though, one that can greatly fatten his wallet if not his ring record. That weapon? A gift for self-promotion. Although Thurman has nowhere near the fan base of a Canelo Alvarez, or even perhaps an Amir Khan, he’s clearly able to draw the kind of attention that his upcoming opponent, Shawn Porter, simply can’t.

Whether it’s donning a musician’s hairstyle, playing a woodwind instrument or driving a hybrid vehicle, Thurman possesses a uniqueness which is seemingly more at home at a Masters of Fine Arts program than it is in the boxing ring. That’s not what really draws the extra attention, though. What really brings in the chatter is Thurman’s mouth – which he employs freely and often frequently. “I love what’s happening in the world of boxing today,” he said recently, “This is a big stage, it’s a big platform, and it’s always been my dream to awaken people, to bring boxing back to the public.” Give Thurman this, he dreams big.

As for his upcoming bout with former IBF world welterweight champion, Porter, Thurman has things to say about him, as well. Sure enough, the fighter known as One Time makes is clear he knows Porter will try breaking him down when they meet in New York on June 25th. “The thing is,” Thurman claims, “can he break down Keith Thruman before being knocked out?” You have to love a fighter who refers to himself in the third person (paging Tyson Fury). You also have to give credit to a man who – whether you agree with him or not – goes right out and lets the world know he thinks Floyd Mayweather was a cherry picker.

Sure, lots of welterweight fighters probably think Floyd was overly cautious in his choice of opponents, but how many of note come right out and say it? Thurman did, on an extremely popular satellite radio show, no less. Being a provocateur is part of being a self-promoter, after all. Thurman is a bit different from other mouthy types, however in that he isn’t outright mean. Men like Fury, and Adrien Broner can be straight up nasty. Thurman doesn’t go that route. He pretty much sticks to promoting Thurman.

And unless Porter shuts him up, you can expect Thurman to keep on talking for quite some time.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Thurman, Porter, Lomachenko, Guzman, Chisora, Shumenov, and more…


Boxing Insider Notebook: Thurman, Porter, Lomachenko, Guzman, Chisora, Shumenov, and more…
By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of April 26th to May 3rd, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

Photo Credit: Amanda Westcott/Showtime
Photo Credit: Amanda Westcott/Showtime

Keith Thurman/Shawn Porter Press Conference Quotes

Welterweight world champion Keith Thurman and former champion Shawn Porter recently held a press conference to discuss their upcoming matchup on June 25th, live on Showtime, from the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York.

Below are some quotes from that press conference.

KEITH THURMAN

“I made you wait. But it’s worth it. This is a tremendous fight. Arguably the best matchup of the year. We’re going to work our butts off to make it the Fight of the Year.

“Our two teams go way back. This is the most beautiful moment of my professional career and I’m about to compete with somebody I grew up with. I’m happy for my success and I’m happy for Shawn’s success. We come from the same boat. When you’re a young kid in the gym training and then you’re here today, that takes a special kind of person. Shawn and I are both that kind of person.

“We took six weeks off after my accident, with three days a week of physical therapy. I was relaxing at home. I didn’t like it. As a fighter, I wanted this fight as bad as the fans wanted this fight.

“This isn’t just the biggest fight of my career. But it’s the most anticipated fight of my career. Sometimes it pays to add some drama to the game. It wasn’t our intention, but I think it worked out.

“Barclays Center makes this a big fight. We get to promote here in New York City. New York is a fight town. My favorite fighter of all time, Mike Tyson, is from Brooklyn. This just happened to work out for the best.

“I anticipate most of the welterweight division being in attendance on June 25. The situation that division is in right now is that we’re all in a frenzy. Everyone wants the spotlight and everyone wants to be the top dog. We all have that opportunity.

“I want to have two titles by the end of this year. People talk about replacing Floyd Mayweather, but you can’t become the man without beating all the people in front of you. One fight at a time. I want to stay at the top by grabbing another belt. I’m going to show that I’m the big dog at 147 pounds.

“June 25, my friend is about to become my enemy. I’m going to treat him like any other enemy.

“Get your tickets. Get your seats. Get your popcorn. Whatever you need to do. This is going to be a fight you don’t want to miss. This is going to be a knockout you don’t want to miss. I love you Shawn, but I’m doing my best to put you to sleep.”

SHAWN PORTER

“I’m very excited about this fight. I’m blessed to have this opportunity. Not only to go for this title but to be a part of a record-breaking show at Barclays Center. This night is going to be memorable.

“Keith Thurman is bringing out the competitiveness in me to a level I’ve always wanted. It’s a level I expect. I have a guy next to me who is challenging me more than ever. Me and Keith Thurman are going to put on a show. Everything you talked about, you’re going to get it.

“It is amazing to be a part of something great like this. I’ve always considered myself to be a very good fighter and a very good athlete, but I’ve always wanted something like this and to have it is very humbling.

“I wasn’t surprised that Keith said he would knock me out. He has to pump himself up and be confident. When he looked at me I think he was trying to convince me that he was being real and I was looking at him to find out if he was convinced. He thinks he’s going to knock me out, I say he’s not. I’m going to do everything it takes to beat him and make it look easy.

“This is forming to be a big fight, one of those fights that we’ve looked forward to since we were kids.

“This is my second time fighting at Barclays Center. I’m 1-0 with a championship so now I’m looking for another one. I’ve been to some of the other fights at Barclays too and it is really an electric atmosphere. People are coming out to see something great and that’s what I’m going to give them.

“I’m not changing anything in camp because of how familiar Keith and I are with each other. I have to do it at the right time in the ring. We’re going to do everything we do to prepare for a world championship fight.

“Thurman is a little unorthodox at times so we’re prepared for that. It’s about going 12 rounds or less and looking good doing it. We’ve done a little sparring as pros but nothing as competitive as I’m expecting on June 25.

“I have a feeling Keith is going to say he’s knocking me out a lot. I want to know if he believes that. He’s a cutthroat kind of fighter. I know that. The hands will be up, the defense will be taken care of, and we’re taking care of business.”

Tickets to Martines v. Lomachenko/Verdejo and Zou US Debut On Sale

Three-time world champion ROMAN “Rocky” MARTINEZ and World Boxing Organization (WBO) featherweight world champion VASYL LOMACHENKO will go mano a mano for Martinez’s WBO junior lightweight world title and the boxing gem of Puerto Rico, FELIX “El Diamante” VERDEJO, will risk his WBO Latino lightweight crown, undefeated record and No. 2 world rating against JUAN JOSE MARTINEZ in the co-main event of a championship doubleheader Saturday, June 11 — one day before the famed Puerto Rican Day Parade — at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. The two bouts, scheduled for 12 and 10 rounds, respectively, will be televised live on HBO beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. The non-televised undercard will feature the U.S. debut of two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Amateur Champion ZOU SHIMING from The Peoples Republic of China in a 10-round flyweight bout.

The five gladiators boast a combined record of 87-6-3 (53 KOs) — a winning percentage of 91% with over 60% of their victories coming by way of knockout.

“I feel very happy returning to New York to fight, and even more on a special date like the Puerto Rican Day Parade. I know that a lot of Puerto Ricans will be there and I’ll be ready, as always, to give it my all,” said Martinez. “About Lomachenko I can say that he is a boxer with a lot of accomplishments as an amateur and even though he became champion in just a few professional fights, it isn’t the same in amateur as in professional boxing and we are working hard to take the victory on June 11.”

“Thank you to Top Rank! Thank you to my manager, Egis Klimas!. And thank you to HBO for believing that I can headline its telecast in the main event of the evening,” said Lomachenko. “It is a big opportunity for me. It is a chance to set a new record by becoming a two-division world champion in the shortest period — my seventh professional fight — a record that currently stands at eight fights. On June 11, at Madison Square Garden, I’m going to do my best to reach a new career pinnacle.”

“I’m more motivated than ever for this fight on HBO and performing in front of my people in New York,” said Verdejo. “I recognize that my focus for my last couple of fights hasn’t been at its best. I feel that my last performances haven’t been close to what has been expected of me and that has motivated me to show my supporters that the Felix Verdejo they have been rooting for will be at The Garden on June 11 and for a very long time after.”

“This is the first time in boxing history which two fighters on this card each won two Olympic gold medals,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “Vasyl Lomachenko and Zou Shiming accomplished iconic feats in the sport of boxing and Felix Verdejo himself is a former Olympian and one of the top amateur boxers.”

Sampson Lewkowicz Ordered to Begin Negotiating Guzman vs. Wake Fight for IBF Super Bantamweight Title

Promoter Sampson Lewkowicz has been given the go-ahead to begin negotiating a world-title fight between his fighter, Dominican Jonathan Guzman, and the promoters for Japan’s Shingo Wake.

The IBF ordered Lewkowicz, representing Guzman, the IBF #2 Super Bantamweight, and Kyoei Promotions, the IBF #1 Super Bantamweight, to begin negotiations immediately and have them completed no later than June 2 of this year.

Guzman (21-0) just defeated Daniel Rosas in Atlantic City while Wake (20-4-2) decisioned Thailand’s Mike Tawatchai last June.

The IBF rules state: “Any boxer who is contracted with a promoter, a network, or a state, tribal or national commission to take another fight, or who is ill, injured, under a legal impediment which could prevent the bout from taking place in the opinion of the IBF/USBA, or on suspension at the time the Championships Chairman and the President order a bout under this rule shall be considered unavailable. We would then move to the next available contender. Neither fighter can take another fight until this fight for the vacant title is concluded.”

In the event the camps cannot reach an agreement by June 2, the IBF will call for purse offers to be held to determine who will promote the bout, when and where it will be held. Per IBF rules, neither boxer may compete in another match until they face each other.

Pulev-Chisroa Title Clash Added to Crolla-Barroso Lightweight Title Telecast

This Saturday, a heavyweight contest between former world title challenger Kubrat Pulev and Dereck Chisora has been added to the telecast that will feature WBA Lightweight Champion Anthony Crolla defending his title against the hard punching Ismael Barroso that will be shown live on AWE-A Wealth of Entertainment.

The Pulev – Chisora European Heavyweight title clash will originate from Hamburg, Germany and will precede the Crolla – Barroso bout from Manchester, England.

“We are ecstatic to add this important heavyweight fight to our world title broadcast. The winner of this fight will be at the head of the line to get their second world title opportunity and these are big heavyweights, so we expect an explosive fight,” said AWE President, Charles Herring.

Rances Barthelemy to Face Mickey Bey on June 3rd

Undefeated lightweight world champion Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy (24-0, 13 KOs) will make his first title defense against former world champion Mickey “The Spirit” Bey (22-1-1, 10 KOs) in the main event of Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) on Spike Friday, June 3 at the Hard Rock Live at the Seminole Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Florida.

Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/PT as unbeaten Puerto Rican prospect Emmanuel Rodriguez (14-0, 10 KOs) takes on hard-hitting Mexican Victor “Pitufo” Proa (28-1-2, 21 KOs) in a 10-round bantamweight affair.

“There were rumors that a fight between me and Mickey Bey was on the brink of happening prior to my fight against Denis Shafikov, so now that it is here, I know it was destined to happen,” said Barthelemy. “I’m not a rookie anymore. I’m not going into this worried or nervous about it being my first title defense at 135. I’m comfortable enough now to see every fight as just another challenge I need to execute my game plan the most effectively and with the least amount of errors.”

“Barthelemy won my title, I had to vacate it due to a hand injury, so all he is doing is keeping it warm for me,” said Bey. “Training camp is going great. I have been training hard for over a month. I have the best team in the business, with the most knowledgeable trainers. I’m looking forward to the challenge with him being undefeated and a two-time world champion. We both have a lot of skills, so it will make an entertaining fight for sure.”

“I want to challenge all of the bantamweight champions to fight me so they can see a real athlete in the ring,” said Rodriguez. “I have been training hard. This is a lifestyle for me. I have been training since December and on June 3, I am going to deliver a knockout.”

“I’m excited about this opportunity against a good young fighter,” said Proa. “I’ve been training hard and feel like this is my time. I’m going to come forward and see what this guy can do.”

WBA Interim Cruiserweight World Champion Shumenov Protests WBA “Regular” World Cruiserweight Title Fight

World Boxing Association (WBA) Interim cruiserweight world champion Beibut Shumenov (16-2, 10 KOs), the only Kazakhstan-native to hold world titles in two different weight classes, is disputing the WBA’s sanctioning of the WBA “regular” cruiserweight world championship fight, May 20 in Paris, between two lower-ranked WBA fighters, No. 2 Yunier Dorticos and No. 5 Youri Kalenga (recently upgraded to No. 3).

Last July, Shumenov defeated B.J. Flores by way of a 12-round unanimous decision to become the mandatory challenger for WBA “regular” cruiserweight champion Denis Lebedev, who was later elevated to “Super” champion.

Lebedev hasn’t fought a mandatory defense in one year, ironically, when he won a 12-round decision over Kalenga, who had earned his world title shot, like Shumenov, by becoming WBA Interim world champion. The WBA granted Lebedev an extension in terms of his due mandatory defense because of the Russian’s unification fight May 21 in Moscow against International Boxing Federation (IBF) title-holder Victor Emelio Ramirez.

“I’m very disappointed the WBA is sanctioning Dorticos-Kalenga for its ‘regular’ cruiserweight title, when I am the No. 1 ranked and current WBA Interim champion,” Shumenov said. “I repeatedly informed the WBA through emails, texts and verbally that I was ready to fight back in January. I preferred to fight Lebedev but I was willing to fight Dorticos or anybody else in the top 15. For the past few months, I’ve been laboring over what I believe is a very bad decision, letting two lower-ranked fighters, the No. 2 and No. 3 guys, fight for the WBA ‘regular’ title. I am shocked and bewildered and do not understand the WBA’s rationale to have either of these fighters declared the WBA ‘regular’ champion without first defeating either Lebedev or me, the Interim champion and No. 1 rank contender.

“I appealed the decision but, so far, the WBA has done little in response to my appeals other than delay and stall before finally ruling that I will fight the Lebedev-Ramirez winner months from now, yet, ignoring my appeal to stop the regular title status of Dorticos-Kalenga and still sanction a fight between them, its No. 2 and No. 3 rated fighters, for the WBA ‘regular’ title. This is unfair to fans, who deserve to watch the best fighting the best, especially when a world championship is at stake! We now have this odd situation where there will be three separate WBA cruiserweight fights in May, all for a different version of WBA world title I just don’t feel anyone should get the WBA ‘regular’ title without first defeating a champion or at least the top-ranked fighter in the division. The WBA knew I was and am ready to fight. Its decision makes no sense and, in my opinion, diminishes the prestige and meaning of the title. I have respect for Dorticos and Kalenga but I think the legitimacy of any world title resulting from a fight between the No. 2 and No. 3 ranked contenders, when the No 1 mandatory contender who already holds the WBA Interim champion is ready and available, to say the least, is highly questionable.

“The WBA told me and announced to the media that it was working to have only one world champion in each division. While I’ve been sitting out the last four months waiting to fight, the WBA has decided to allow six different guys to fight for three WBA cruiserweight world titles, practically on the same day, instead of crowning only one WBA cruiserweight world champion. I look forward to returning to the ring and my manager, Al Haymon, has advised me that I will fight in May and we will announce next week. I want to thank everyone for their support and I apologize to my family, friends, fans and my country, Kazakhstan, for this chaos the WBA has caused that has damaged and delayed my professional boxing career. I will move forward and continue to fight inside the ring, letting my attorneys and manager fight this unfair situation outside the ring.”

UFC Fighter Paige VanZant Says Tyson Fury Deserves an Ass Whooping

UFC fighter Paige VanZant recently told TMZ Sports that Tyson Fury’s sexist comments about women are completely disrespectful, and that he needs to get his ass kicked.

Fury stated in a December interview that “A woman’s best place is in the kitchen and on her back.” Wladimir Klitschko stated that Fury was a disgrace to the sport of boxing, and VanZant is following suit.

You can read more at http://www.tmz.com/2016/04/28/paige-vanzant-tyson-fury-wladimir-klitschko-sexist/

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