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Showtime Boxing Results: Russell Defeats Diaz, Stevenson and Jack Battle to a Draw


By: William Holmes

Showtime has shown no signs of slowing down in putting on competitive fights with a split site double header on their Showtime World Championship Boxing telecast.

The opening bout of the night was between Gary Russell Jr. (28-1) and Joseph Diaz (26-0) for the WBC Featherweight Title. This bout took place at The Theater at the MGM Grand National Harbor in Maryland.

Joseph Diaz entered the ring first and Russell second to a much louder ovation.


Photo Credit: Showtime Boxing Twitter Account

Both boxers were southpaws and Diaz looked like the bigger fighter, but Russell established early on that he had the better hand speed. He was active with his jab in the opening round and had a strong start to the fight.

Russell continued with his jab in the early parts of the second round, but Diaz had some moderate success to the body and ended the round strong.

The third round was a closer round, but it looked like Diaz was willing to take a few punches from Russell in order to land one punch of his own. Diaz ended the round with two good straight left hands.

Diaz kept a high guard in the fourth and fifth rounds but Russell landed the higher volume of punches while Diaz landed the harder shots to the body. Diaz had a strong fifth round, but Russell came back in the sixth round with his active jab and high volume output.

Russell was the first man to throw and land in the seventh and eighth rounds and looked like he was beginning to walk away with the fight. Russell hand speed was on full display in the ninth round as Diaz was simply not throwing enough punches.

Diaz had a better tenth round and took more risks than earlier rounds, but was also countered more often by the faster Russell.

The final two rounds featured several fierce exchanges, and Russell looked like he was beginning to fade a little bit in the last round, but Diaz wasn’t able to do enough to get a stoppage.
The Judges scored the fight 115-113, 117-111, and 117-111.

The last fight televised by Showtime was a WBC Light Heavyweight Title Fight between Champion Adonis Stevenson (29-1) and challenger Badou Jack (22-1-2) at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto, Canada.

Stevenson, a southpaw, and Jack, fighting out of an orthodox stance, had spent the better part of two rounds feeling each other out and tried to find their range. Stevenson was able to land some straight left hands in the second and was more active in the third, but Jack was able to land some counters in the third round.


Photo Credit: Showtime Boxing Twitter Account

Jack was able to fire off his punches first in the fourth round but took a good left uppercut from Stevenson with about thirty seconds left. Stevenson was the aggressor in the fifth and sixth rounds while Jack fought mainly out of a tight high guard. Jack was warned for a low blow at the end of the sixth round.

Jack started to come forward in the seventh round and hurt Stevenson with a short right hand followed up by combinations. Jack was snapping the head of Stevenson in the seventh with his uppercuts, but he was warned for a low blow again at the end of the round.

Jack opened up the eighth round with another low blow and Adonis Stevenson was given time to recover. Jack followed up with short right hooks and uppercuts and was able to bust open the nose of Badou jack.

Jack looked like the fresher fighter in the ninth round and had Stevenson stumbling at one point. Stevenson was able to come back and have a strong tenth round when he hurt Jack with a body shot and had Jack peddling backwards.

Stevenson pressed the pace early on in the eleventh round and had Jack in full retreat, but he tired in the middle of the round and Jack re-established dominance in the ring.

Both boxers were able to land some good shots in the final round, but Jack ended the fight strong with a hard combination as the final bell rang.

The judges scored the bout 114-114, 115-113 Jack, 114-114 for a majority draw.

Adonis Steven retains the title with a draw.

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Showtime Boxing Preview: Stevenson vs. Jack, Russell vs. Diaz


By: William Holmes

On Saturday night Showtime network will broadcast two fights from two separate locations on a split site feature.

One fight will feature a WBC Light Heavyweight Title Fight between current champion Adonis Stevenson and the Swedish fighter Badou Jack. This bout will be taking place in Toronto, Canada at the Air Canada Centre. The other bout will be a WBC Featherweight Title between Gary Russell Jr. and Joseph Diaz Jr.


Photo Credit: Badou Jack Twitter Account

The following is a preview of both televised fights.

Adonis Stevenson (29-1) vs. Badou Jack (22-1-2); WBC Light Heavyweight Title

Adonis Stevenson has often been mentioned as one of the best light heavyweights in the world along with Sergei Kovalev and Andre Ward, but neither of those fights have ever come to fruition and he’s no forty years old and past his athletic prime.

Stevenson will face a very tough opponent in Badou Jack. Jack is six years younger than Stevenson, but has also been more active. He fought twice in 2017 and once in 2016, while Stevenson only fought once in 2017 and once in 2016.

Stevenson will also be giving up about two inches in height to Jack, but he will have a four inch reach advantage. Stevenson will be fighting in his home country which shouldn’t be a big surpise since he has only fought outside of Canada two times. This will be Jack’s first fight outside of the United States since 2010.

Both boxers had successful amateur careers. Stevenson was a Canadian National Champion and Jack was a Swedish National Champion and a competitor in the 2008 Summer Olympics.

Stevenson has defeated the likes of Andrzej Fonfara, Thomas Williams Jr., Tommy Karpency, Sakio Bika, Tony Bellew, Tavoris Cloud, Chad Dawson, and Donovan George. His lone loss was the Darnell Boone, which he later avenged.

Jack also has a good professional resume, though his level of competition in recent fights surpasses that of Stevenson. His lone loss was a shocking TKO upset loss to Derek Edwards in 2014. He has two draws against James DeGale and Marco Antonio Periban. He has defeated the likes of Nathan Cleverly, Lucian Bute, George Groves, Anthony Dirrell, and Marco Antonio Periban.

If this fight happened five years ago Stevenson would have to be considered the favorite. But he’s now forty years old and has been fairly inactive recently while Jack has been steadily facing tougher and tougher competition.

If this fight goes to the Judges scorecards Stevenson may have a slight edge since the fight is happening in Canada, but the timing feels right for Jack to pull off a victory.

Gary Russell Jr. (28-1) vs. Joseph Diaz Jr. (26-0); WBC Featherweight Title

Golden Boy Promotions needs to be given credit for their willingness to throw their fighters in the ring with top fighters from other promotions. The Diaz-Russell fight is a good example of Golden Boy taking a risk by putting one of their top guys against an established champion.

Diaz is twenty five and will be four years younger than Russell. However, Joseph Diaz has been very active since 2016. He fought once in 2018, twice in 2017 and four times in 2016. Russell only fought once in 2017, 2016, and in 2015.

Diaz will have about an inch and a half reach height advantage and both boxers have the same reach. They both represented the United States in the Summer Olympics, Russell in 2008 and Diaz in 2012.

Diaz is a southpaw, and the only boxer that Russell lost to, Vasyl Lomachenko, was a southpaw. It will be interesting to see what adjustments Russell has made since he last fought Lomachenko.

Russell represents the biggest test of Diaz’s young career. He has defeated the likes of Victor Terrazas, Rafael Rivera, Manuel Avila, Jayson Velez, and Ruben Tamayo.

Russell has been fairly inactive for a world champion, but has defeated some very good fighters. He has defeated the likes of Oscar Escandon, Patrick Hyland, Jhonny Gonzlaez, and Christopher Martin. His lone loss was the Vasyl Lomachenko, who has since jumped up two weight classes to dethrone Jorge Linares as the Lightweight Champion.

Russell’s inactivity should be of concern to his camp, especially since he’s facing a young, undefeated, challenger who has a strong amateur pedigree.

This fight will be close, but age and activity has this writer giving Diaz a slight edge on Saturday night.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Ennis, Jones, Holyfield, Russell, Adames, and more…


Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of May 1st to May 8th; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

Gary Russell and His Brothers to Compete on Same Card on May 19th

The Russells of Capitol Heights, Maryland will team up again for an exciting night of boxing for their hometown fans. Three of the five boxing brothers, all trained by their father, Gary, Sr., will compete on the same card for the second time in their careers at MGM National Harbor in Maryland on Saturday, May 19.

The event is headlined by Gary Russell, Jr. defending his featherweight world title against mandatory challenger Joseph Diaz Jr. live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT). His brothers, super lightweight Gary Antuanne Russell and bantamweight Gary Antonio Russell will compete in separate non-televised bouts on the undercard.

Tickets for the event, which is promoted by TGB Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions, are on sale now and are available by visiting http://mgmnationalharbor.com/.

The 21-year-old Gary Antuanne (5-0, 5 KOs) will take on Wilmer Rodriguez (9-2, 7 KOs) in an eight round 140-pound match. Russell was a member of the U.S. boxing team at the 2016 Olympic games. He made his professional debut fighting on the same card as his other two brothers at MGM National Harbor last May 20 when he scored a TKO victory over Josh Ross. With his brothers and father working his corner at his last fight, he scored a stoppage victory over Andrew Rodgers in Brooklyn on April 21.

Gary Antonio (10-0, 8 KOs) will battle Esteban Aquino (12-4, 7 KOs) in an eight-round bantamweight match. Russell scored a knockout victory over Marco Antonio Mendoza Chico in his last fight on Nov. 21 and the card with his brothers last May 20, the 25-year-old Russell stopped Jovany Fuentes for a TKO victory.

In additional undercard action, Cobia Breedy (10-0, 4 KOs) will fight in an eight-round featherweight match and Immanuel Aleem (17-1-1, 10 KOs) steps into the ring for a 10-round middleweight match. Plus, Moshea Aleem (4-1-2, 2 KOs) battles Rayton Okwiri (2-0, 1 KO) in a six-round super welterweight match and Brandon Quarles (18-4-1, 9 KOs) clashes with Fred Jenkins, Jr. (10-5, 3 KOs) in an eight-round super welterweight bout.
Marine Takes on Royal Marines in UK Boxing Match

Marine Corporal Christian Valdes, of Silver Springs, MD, will be competing in a boxing match against the Royal Marines in London, England on May 8th at 2 p.m. eastern. You can watch his boxing match against the Royal Marines via webcast or on our satellite coordinates below.

Marines from the Marine Corps Boxing Team travelled to the United Kingdom to participate in a military-to-military training exchange culminating in a boxing competition against the Royal Marines May 8, 2018. The United States Marine Corps and Royal Marines will use the competition to celebrate their shared warfighting culture, values and military partnership. The U.S. Marine fighters have been handpicked from units in Southern California to represent the United States Marine Corps in the ring against the Royal Marines.

WHO: Corporal Christian Valdes
WHAT: Boxing Match between US Marines & Royal Marines
WHERE: London, England
WHEN: Tuesday, May 8th at 2 p.m. eastern
HOW: Via webcast and Satellite coordinates (below additional info)

Webcast Link to Boxing Matches : https://www.dvidshub.net/webcast/15204

Carlos Adames Ready for ESPN Spotlight

Carlos ‘Caballo Bronco’ Adames no longer wants to be the welterweight division’s best-kept secret. The undefeated 24-year-old from Santo Domingo, Dominican Republic, is seeking to make a statement on one of the biggest stages imaginable.

Adames (13-0, 11 KOs) will face Alejandro Barrera in a 10-round bout as the ESPN-televised co-feature to Jorge Linares’ WBA and Ring Magazine lightweight title defense against Vasiliy Lomachenko on Saturday at Madison Square Garden. Adames, who will be making his debut under the Top Rank banner, has not fought in the United States since his fourth pro bout back in 2015.

“I feel like I carry the responsibility of becoming the superstar that my country is waiting for,” Adames said. “I have the talent, dedication and confidence to become a superstar that represents the Dominican Republic. I’m going to give it all for my country.”

Adames, a go-for-broke puncher, turned pro in 2015 following a storied amateur career that saw him win gold medals at the Pan American Youth Championships and the Dominican Republic Youth National Championships, among other tournaments. Last July, he picked up the most impressive win of his pro career, shutting out former IBF junior middleweight champion Carlos Molina over 11 rounds. Adames gained invaluable experience when he sparred with pound-for-pound elite Terence Crawford roughly two years ago.

“I sparred some good rounds with Crawford, and I did very well against one of the best fighters in the world,” Adames said. “That gave me a lot of confidence, and it showed me that I could go very far as a fighter.”

Standing in his way is Barrera (27-4, 17 KOs), a veteran from Monterrey, Mexico, whose only stoppage defeat came to current IBF welterweight champion Errol Spence Jr. in 2015.

“I’m going to leave it all in the ring and put on a great show for the fans that will be present at Madison Square Garden and for the millions that will be watching live on ESPN,” Adames said. “I want to tell everyone to get their snacks and drinks ready because I am going for the knockout. Watch out. ‘Caballo Bronco’ is coming.’”

Linares vs. Lomachenko and Adames vs. Barrera will be televised live and exclusively at 8:00 p.m. ET on ESPN and ESPN Deportes, and undercard bouts will stream live on ESPN+, available through the ESPN App, beginning at 4:30 p.m. ET.

Roy Jones Jr. and Evander Holyfield to Attend Atlantic City Card at the Claridge

Two of the greatest fighters of all-time, former cruiserweight and heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield and former four division world champion Roy Jones, Jr. will be special guests as Mis Downing Promotions will officially kick off the Atlantic City Boxing Hall of Fame 2nd Annual Induction Weekend on Friday, June 1st, with a great night of professional boxing at The Claridge: A Radisson Hotel.

The fight card on Friday June 1st in the Celebrity Theater at the Claridge Hotel will precede a great show that will take place the next evening Saturday June 2nd at Historic Boardwalk Hall {Adrian Phillips Theater} where Mis Downing Promotions will be working in associating with 4-Time Heavyweight Champ Evander “Real Deal” Holyfield and his promotional company Real Deal Sports & Entertainment.

“To have Evander and Roy attend my fight card will just add to a great night and weekend in Atlantic City. These are 2 of the legends of the sport, and knowing that they will be in attendance on June 1st, that will inspire all of the fighters even more,” Said Mis Downing, CEO of Mis Downing Promotions.

In the main event, super middleweight Derrick Webster (25-1, 13 KOs) of Glassboro, New Jersey will take part in a ten-round bout.
Jaron Ennis to Take On Mike Arnaoutis

On Friday, June 1st Rising Welterweight Contender, Jaron “Boots” Ennis (19-0 17ko) headlines Rising Star Promotions newly created series “Boardwalk Boxing” Round 2 taking on battle tested, former USBA, NABO Champion and World Title challenger “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis (26-10-2 13ko) at the beautiful Showboat Hotel in Atlantic City, New Jersey.

“Boots” comes from a fighting family with his brothers Farah and Derek “Pooh” Ennis along with trainer/father Derek “Bozy” Ennis. Turning pro on April 30th of 2016, Ennis has been very active almost fighting 10 times a year. Ennis will be scheduled to box his first 10 round bout on the Boardwalk.

“This is going to be a great night of boxing, not only for us and the fighters, but for the City of Atlantic City and the State of New Jersey” Rising Star VP Thomas “Cornflake” LaManna says during a brief interview. “Atlantic City has a HUGE history of boxing and I think it’s great that a venue like The Showboat Hotel has gone the extra mile for us to be able to continue bringing Elite Level club show boxing to this reviving city”.

Mike Arnaoutis is no stranger to the big fights. The Pride of Athens Greece is the toughest test to date to the much younger Ennis. Arnaoutis has been in the ring with World Class opposition like Danny Garcia, Kendall Holt, Chris Algieri, Victor Ortiz, Demetrius Hopkins and Delvin Rodriguez to name a couple.

LaManna continued to quote “This is a test that Boots needs but to me, Jaron Ennis is hands down one of the best fighters not only in Philadelphia, but in the country. I see Boots’ story turning out to be like Terrance Crawford, he might be unknown to certain people and outlets outside of Philadelphia and/or the Tri-State area, but once he gets that breakout fight and TV appearance, he will become a superstar and I’m happy to be apart of that journey in any way, shape or form”.

The June 1st undercard is headlined by two NEW JERSEY STATE TITLE FIGHTS

Undefeated Chris “Sandman” Thomas (8-0-1) of Beachwood will be taking on Asbury Park’s Daryl “DreamKing” Bunting (3-3-1) for the NEW JERSEY STATE MIDDLEWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP.

Brick, New Jersey’s Dan Pasciolla (9-2-2) defends his State title against Vineland’s undefeated former Flordia, Marlins Center Fielder Quian Davis (4-0-2 2ko) for the NEW JERSEY STATE HEAVYWEIGHT CHAMPIONSHIP.

Undercard will feature Rising Star Promotions own Donald “No Love” Smith and Nahir “Woo” Albright both of Philadelphia. Afghanistan War Veteran Ernesto “Tito” Perez, Yurik “DBSBC” Mamedov, Joel De La Paz, Michael Lee and Angel Pizarro.

Appearing in six-rounds bouts will be lightweight Christina Linardatou (9-1, 5 KOs) of Athens, Greece; super lightweight John Bauza (9-0, 5 KOs) of North Bergen, NJ; heavyweight Darmani Rock (11-0, 7 KOs) of Philadelphia, PA; featherweight Kevin Asmat (3-2, 2 KOs) of North Bergen, NJ.

Seeing action in four-round bouts will be pro debuting super welterweight Isaiah Hart of Atlantic City; featherweight James Wilkins (3-0, 3 KOs) of Brooklyn, NY; super featherweight Javier Oquendo (3-0, 1 KO) of Philadelphia and super lightweight Osnel Charles (12-18-1, 2 KOs) of Atlantic City.

Tickets are $150 for VIP Ringside; $120 for Stage seating; $85 for Premium Seating and $60 for General Admission

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Thurman, Barrera, Magdaleno, Russell, Diaz, Stevenson, and more…


Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of April 17th to April 24th; covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.


Photo Credit: Mikey Williams/Top Rank

Injury Rehabilitation Forces Keith Thurman to Relinquish WBC Belt

Unified welterweight champion Keith Thurman has voluntarily relinquished his WBC title while he recovers from the effects of elbow surgery last year and a hand injury he suffered in training camp last month.
After speaking with WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman recently, Thurman decided that he would relinquish the title and open the way for former champions Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter, the two leading contenders for the WBC title, to fight each other for the championship while Thurman made a full recovery from his injuries.

“Due to my rehabilitation from my injuries, I agreed to relinquish my WBC title at this time. I continue to rehab my hand and elbow and I look forward to getting back in the ring this summer. This is a temporary setback and I will be the unified champion once again and look forward to winning back my WBC title as soon as possible,” said Thurman.

“Keith Thurman unfortunately has suffered two consecutive injuries that have kept him out of the ring after his sensational victory over Danny Garcia and he has graciously relinquished his title, and the WBC has mandated that Danny Garcia and Shawn Porter will fight for the title,” said Mauricio Sulaiman. “Keith will have a direct path to fight for the title once he has healed just as Vitali Klitshcko and other WBC champions have done in the past. Keith is a tremendous athlete, champion and role model. The WBC will support him completely during this difficult time. ”

Garcia (34-1, 20 KOs), a former unified champion at 140 pounds and the former WBC welterweight champion, lost the WBC title to Thurman by 12-round split decision in 2017. He bounced back with a knockout victory over former champion Brandon Rios in February. The WBC had made that fight a title elimination match, which put Garcia in line to fight Thurman again for the title.

Porter (28-2-1, 17 KOs), a former welterweight champion, lost a close 12-round decision to Thurman in 2016. He became the mandatory challenger for the WBC title when he knocked out Andre Berto last year. He maintained his status with a 12-round decision over Adrian Granados in November.

The 29-year-old Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs) has been plagued by a string of injuries the last two years.
Thurman injured his neck in a car accident in February 2016, which delayed his match against Porter by three months. When they met Thurman defeated Porter by unanimous decision on June 25.

He defeated Garcia by split decision in a welterweight unification match on March 4, 2017. A month later he had major surgery on his right elbow to remove bone spurs and calcium deposits. He is still in rehabilitation from that surgery.

Thurman injured his hand hitting the heavy bag last month and aggravated the injury sparring with some amateurs at his gym in St. Petersburg, Florida. An MRI revealed bruises to the metacarpal bones in the hand, which also has extensive swelling. Thurman can’t have any impact with the hand for at least 8 weeks, which added another delay to his ring return.

He now hopes to return to the ring in the late summer or early fall.

Jessie Magdaleno: I’m Going to Put on a Spectacular Show

World Boxing Organization (WBO) junior featherweight champion Jessie Magdaleno has spent his latest training camp running the mountains near Guadalajara, Mexico, and alongside some of the world’s best fighters at Legendz Boxing in Norwalk, Calif. Magdaleno is preparing for the role of main event headliner against No. 1 contender and interim champion Isaac Dogboe (18-0, 12 KOs) on Saturday, April 28 at The Liacouras Center in Philadelphia.

“I’m mentally ready. I’m physically ready,” Magdaleno said. “Being here with {trainer} Manny Robles keeps me ready. The sparring has been great, but I get impatient sometimes and just want to get in the ring for real. I have to stay calm and wait until the fight comes.”

Said Robles: “Dogboe is a real tough opponent. Jessie definitely has to be ready for this fight, and it should be a fan-friendly fight.”

Magdaleno (25-0, 18 KOs) won the world title with a unanimous decision over four-weight world champion Nonito Donaire on Nov. 5, 2016. He has defended his belt once, a second-round stoppage over Adeilson Dos Santos last April. When Magdaleno steps into the ring against Dogboe, it will have been 371 days since the Dos Santos fight.

“It’s been a long training camp, and I’ve been training with some excellent fighters,” Magdaleno said. “I was with {WBO featherweight champion} Oscar Valdez in Mexico, and now, it’s the home stretch. We’re more than ready to get back in the ring.”

The pre-fight drama escalated last month when Dogboe’s father/trainer, Paul Dogboe, told Ghana’s Pulse website: “We hope Magdaleno will not run like a chicken. We hope he makes the weight and comes in with no excuses because we are ready for him. We are ready to eat him like a chicken. We are focused, and our only mission is to devour him, eat the crazy chicken, throw him over the wall of Mexico and present the title to Donald Trump. Magdaleno will run when he sees Isaac.”

Paul Dogboe has since apologized, and Magdaleno is intent on doing his talking inside the ring.
“It’s about experience, staying focused, and doing our job,” Magdaleno said. “Manny keeps me focused on the fight, and that is my main concern.”

Magdaleno-Dogboe will be televised LIVE on ESPN and stream in English and Spanish on the ESPN App at 7 p.m. ET. Undercard bouts will stream live on ESPN+, available on the ESPN App, beginning at 4 p.m. ET. ESPN Deportes will air the fight at 10 p.m. ET.

Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Peltz Boxing, tickets, priced at $100 (ringside), $65 and $35, are ON SALE NOW and can be purchased at The Liacouras Center Box Office and www.liacourascenter.com, or by calling Peltz Boxing at 215-765-0922.

Adonis Stevenson to Face Badou Jack May 19th in Toronto

Undefeated knockout artist Adonis Stevenson, the longest reigning light heavyweight world champion, will defend his title against two-division champion Badou Jack on Saturday, May 19 live on SHOWTIME from the Air Canada Centre in Toronto in an event presented by Premier Boxing Champions.

The showdown between Stevenson and Jack is one of the most intriguing matches in the light heavyweight division as Jack, a former 168-pound and 175-pound champion, has relinquished his title for the chance to challenge one of the hardest hitters in the sport. Both men are looking to make their claim as the class of the division.

Stevenson vs. Jack is part of a split-site SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® telecast beginning at 10 p.m. ET/PT with featherweight champion Gary Russell, Jr. defending his title against mandatory title challenger Joseph Diaz from the MGM National Harbor in Maryland on Saturday, May 19.

Tickets for the Toronto show, which is promoted by Groupe Yvon Michel, Lee Baxter Promotions and Mayweather Promotions, are on sale Friday, April 27 and will be available at www.ticketmaster.ca.
“It is the second time that we will come to Toronto to promote a WBC world championship fight with Adonis Stevenson,” said Yvon Michel, President of Groupe Yvon Michel. “If you found the first event to be spectacular, be sure not to miss the second one as it will be a real firework! Badou Jack is a two-division world champion and an Olympian. He is dangerous and by far the biggest challenge for Adonis since he won the title against Chad Dawson in 2013. We are confident that ‘Superman’ has what it takes to defend his title successfully for the ninth time.

“I would also like to give thanks to our co-promoter Lee Baxter. This event would not have been possible without his collaboration. In addition, I am grateful for Lee and Wayne Zronik from MLSE, who are providing great support for this event and has opened the doors of the Air Canada Centre to us.”

“Mayweather Promotions is looking forward to partnering with Groupe Yvon Michel to pull off this highly anticipated matchup,” said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions. “Adonis Stevenson has been a reigning champion in this division since 2013. Badou Jack has risen to every challenge he’s faced in his career. Now, he has an opportunity to become a three-time world champion and that raises the stakes for him. I predict two confident, hard-punching and highly skilled fighters will enter the ring at Air Canada Centre on May 19, both determined to walk away a champion.’’

“We are looking forward to hosting this spectacular event at Air Canada Centre,” said Wayne Zronik, Senior Vice President, Music and Live Events at Maple Leaf Sports & Entertainment. “It is the first title fight that the venue will host. We’ve worked with this group before to bring world class boxing to the city and are excited for the return of championship boxing to Toronto, and to Air Canada Centre in particular.”

Stevenson (29-1, 24 KOs) owns one of the most powerful left hands in boxing and goes by the ring moniker “Superman’’. The 40-year-old Stevenson has made eight successful defenses of his title since winning it with a knockout victory over Chad Dawson in 2013. The lineal 175-pound champion most recently defended his title with a second-round stoppage of Andrzej Fonfara last June and delivered a third round TKO over Tommy Karpency in his most recent defense in Toronto in 2015.

“I’m definitely excited and hungry to get into the ring and perform,” said Stevenson. “I’ve trained very hard for this fight against Badou Jack. I’m looking forward to winning this fight by knockout. I’m from the Kronk Gym and we always look for the knockout. Jack is a good, technical boxer. He was a world champion and he has done very well. He’s tough and I won’t underestimate him. I’ll be prepared for anything he brings in the ring.

“I’m fighting him at home in Canada, so I’m looking to give the fans a good show. I’ve got power and I’ve got the best left hook in boxing. I’ve got 12 rounds and I just need to touch you once to end it. It’s not complicated. I don’t need three or four shots. I just need one shot and you’re not going to recover. I’m going to finish you.”

The 34-year-old Jack (22-1-2, 13 KOs) relinquished his 168-pound world championship following a majority draw against James DeGale in 2017 to move up to light heavyweight. He made a successful debut at 175 pounds by knocking out Nathan Cleverly for the light heavyweight championship last August. Jack then relinquished that title to seek out this challenge against the division’s heaviest hitter. Born in Stockholm, Sweden, a 2008 Olympian for his father’s native Gambia and now residing in Las Vegas, Jack is looking to become a three-time world champion on his opponent’s home turf on May 19.

“I’m excited to have the opportunity to fight for my third world title against one of the division’s best, Adonis Stevenson,” said Jack. “I’ve been asking for this fight for a long time and was willing to fight him anywhere, including his backyard. I know he’s good and very dangerous and that’s the reason I want to fight him. I’m all about the best fighting the best and come May 19th, I’m bringing the WBC belt back to Las Vegas. My newborn son, Malik was born just before training camp so now I have two children to fight for, which gives me all the motivation I need to get this win.”

Gary Russell Jr. vs. Joseph Diaz Press Conference Quotes

WBC Featherweight World Champion Gary Russell Jr. (28-1, 17 KOs) and unbeaten No. 1 contender Joseph “JoJo” Diaz Jr. (26-0, 14 KOs) hosted a press conference and faced off for the first time Tuesday before their championship showdown Saturday, May 19 live on SHOWTIME from MGM National Harbor in Maryland.

Tickets for the event, which is promoted by TGB Promotions in association with Golden Boy Promotions, are on sale now and are available by visitinghttp://mgmnationalharbor.com/.

The Russell vs. Diaz fight is part of a split-site SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast that will feature WBC Light Heavyweight World Champion Adonis Stevenson defending his title against two-division world champion Badou Jack in a main event from Toronto presented by Premier Boxing Champions.

Russell Jr., a 2008 U.S. Olympian and 126-pound titleholder since 2015, will defend against his mandatory challenger in the 25-year-old Diaz, who represented the U.S. at the 2012 Olympic games and will be competing in his first title bout.

Here is what the fighters had to say Tuesday from TAP Sports Bar at MGM National Harbor:
GARY RUSSELL JR.

“It’s amazing to be fighting at home. It’s cool to know that the people I see around all the time will be able to get in the car and drive 15 minutes to come watch this massacre. I can’t wait.

“I appreciate JoJo for being honest and saying that he feels I’m the best featherweight in the world. That speaks volumes.

“We stay focused in the gym. The inactivity doesn’t mean anything. It’s no issue. I’ve had hand issues in the past but I’m able to preserve my body and stay sharp, stay focused. I’m a fighter that’s always in shape. I never take a day off. You can ask my wife. On anniversaries, we’re in the gym. On birthdays, we’re in the gym.

“Regardless of what the situation is, you want a sense of financial stability for yourself and your family. I’m at the point of my career where I have maybe six more fights in me. We want to maximize everything. We want to maximize our revenue and it’s been irritating because a lot of the champions don’t want to get in the ring with me. I appreciate JoJo for giving me the opportunity to sharpen my teeth a little bit more. At least he’ll have the opportunity to say he got in the ring with Mr. Gary Russell Jr.

“I’m one of the most dangerous fighters on the planet. Speed, power, ring IQ, we can get ugly if we need to. I don’t plan on going 12 rounds. I’m not going the distance with anybody for the remainder of my career. Mark my words.

“When you have guys that fight and move around a lot, it makes it difficult to get to them the way you want to. When you have a guy that is straightforward and will be in your face, it makes it much easier for me and they’re much more susceptible to get hit.

“A lot of fighters win with pure athleticism because they’re faster, stronger or in better shape. They’re not winning because they have the ability to make the necessary adjustments based on what goes on in the ring. I tell people all the time that boxing is intellect manifested on a physical form. In most cases, the more intelligent fighter wins.

“My father says that whenever you see a fight that is an all-out, knockdown war, it’s just two stupid fighters that didn’t have a plan B or the ability to make the adjustments to make the fight easier. If that’s JoJo’s game plan, it’s going to make this fight a lot easier for me. It’s not going 12 rounds.

“As far as a hit list of my next opponents goes, we are first going to take care of JoJo. I would love to get a unification bout with Leo Santa Cruz after that. If we don’t get that, I plan on moving up in weight and challenging whoever has the title in that division. You want to know who I really want, though? I want Mikey Garcia.

“My last fight will be against (Vasyl) Lomachenko. I want to conclude my career with breaking my foot off of him. That will be the conclusion of it. I’m willing to wait, though. Right now, we’re good.
“Of course I would entertain a fight with Gervonta Davis. We’re cool. He’s somebody that I actually watched grow up and develop as a fighter, but you have to stay in your lane. When I move up in weight, he’s got to get out of the way or he’s going to get ran over too.

“I didn’t want to come home to fight until I had a world title. That’s the reason I didn’t fight at home for so long. Now we have the title, and I wanted to fight at least one more time here.

“I want to maximize our revenue because I don’t plan on fighting for too much longer. I had my first fight at seven years old. I’m 29 now. That’s a long time competing and a lot of wear and tear on your body. I’m a guy that doesn’t cut corners, so it takes away from the time I could be spending with my family and friends. I’m ready to spend time with my family and children and live out the fruits of our labor. But in the meantime, everybody else is in my way. They’re trying to take food off my baby’s plate.”

JOSEPH DIAZ JR.

“I don’t think the fact that I’ve been more active will give me any advantage. I’m just doing what I’m supposed to be doing and getting the experience I need inside the ring before facing an elite fighter like Gary Russell Jr. My preparation has been good. I’ve fought tremendous opponents and I have all the experience to come out victorious May 19.

“It doesn’t affect me at all fighting in his hometown. I’m happy to fight in his backyard. He’s the champion and that’s what champions get to do. I know what he’s capable of doing. He says I don’t have the boxing IQ or the power and speed that he has, but he’s going to be in for a rude awakening come fight night. He’s going to see that I have all the tools.

“It’s a dream come true to be fighting on this stage. Ever since I roomed with Errol Spence at the Olympics, we always promised each other that once we became pro we were going to fight all the elite athletes and the best champions. Gary Russell Jr. is the best at 126 pounds. I’m not scared to fight him and that’s what Errol Spence did, too. He beat Kell Brook in his hometown.

“Gary Russell Jr. is by far the best featherweight in the world. Leo Santa Cruz, Abner Mares, Lee Selby, none of these guys want to fight Russell. They’re afraid of the speed and the counter shots. But I know what I’m capable of doing and I’ll showcase it May 19.

“A win would mean everything for me. It would be a dream come true realizing all of the hard work I’ve put in since I was 13 years old. It would mean that I’m the champion and I’d be the shot caller.

“I think his speed is an obstacle; he’s very fast. But that’s the thing about me, I’m good at adapting to any style that I fight. Come fight night I know that his speed is going to be fast, but it’s nothing that I won’t be able to take, or nothing that will shock me. I’m going to be able to adapt to that speed and make sure I’m able to land my shots when he’s opening up.

“I’m very confident; 100 percent confident I’ll beat him. I know that this is an opportunity that is presented to me and I’ll be victorious. I’ve always prayed to God that I could fight on SHOWTIME and for a WBC title. And now that I am it feels like it’s all settling in and it’s all coming true. I’m working hard every single day, and once I get my hand raised in victory I’m going to go from there.

“If he gets a little bit over confident like he did against [Oscar] Escandon, he’s going to be in for a rude awakening. He’s going to be shocked with not only my punching power, but also with my combinations and with my speed. I’m not like a Jhonny Gonzalez where I’m just throwing one shot, or slow combinations. I’m pretty fast with my punches and you won’t see my punches coming because I throw them very elusive and I punch from different angles. He’s going to be very shocked if he fights the way he fought Oscar Escandon.

“I don’t think it’s going to go the distance. Gary Russell is going to go out there and not back down and give the fight fans a good show, but I’m going to go out there and give a good show and not back down. So I think we’re both not going to back down and we’re going to brawl it out, and let the best man win.”

Sullivan Barrera Expects Bounce Back Performance on Kovalev-Alvarez Undercard

Light heavyweight contender Sullivan “Sully B” Barrera is back in training camp armed with a new fight date and a fresh attitude.

The former Cuban amateur standout admits that not much went right in his March 3rd loss to Dmitry Bivol but chalks it up to an off night and said that it was a learning experience.

Barrera is back with his team but has also added a sports psychologist to his squad in an effort to make sure a repeat of March 3rd doesn’t happen.

“I feel great. I know that was just one bad night. I am not worried about the past and only looking ahead,” Barrera explained.

The plan is for Barrera to return to the ring sometime in the summer on the Sergey Kovalev-Eleider undercard and he hopes to fight the winner next.

“I think the fans know that I always want to fight the best out there. After this fight I want another big fight. My goal is to fight whoever wins between Kovalev and Alvarez,” said Barrera.

“Boxing is like sex. You can be the best lover in the world but sometimes you have an off night. My fiancee knows I am the best even if I don’t perform as well one night. I want to get back in the ring and show the world my best again.”

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Philly’s Avery Sparrow is a Return to Old Philly Boxing


By: Ken Hissner

Philly’s Avery Sparrow puts all his trust in his promoter IBHOF promoter/matchmaker J Russell Peltz. He is currently No. 14 in the WBO ratings due to a victory over previous No. 5 Jose Lopez.

This is what Peltz had to say about his fighter when he was introduced first while fighting an opponent from Nogales, Mexico on the first pro show at Parx Casino in Bensalem, PA, on March 9th.

“When I mentioned this to Brittany Rogers who coordinated the smoothly run show, she remarked “since when did J Russell Peltz care about such things as who enters the ring first?” Never once did Sparrow mention it to me later that shows he has bought into the Peltz Boxing system for which we need a name. You’ve heard of the West Coast offense in football and the Triangle in basketball, but we need a name for the Peltz Boxing system. Something like, as Michelle Rosado coined last week: “If you want a tune-up, go to Midas!”

Avery Sparrow never said one word about being introduced first. He never moaned that he was making substantially less money for March 9th than he made for November 30th when he upset Jose Lopez, the No. 5 ranked WBO junior lightweight contender in the world, on ESPN. He never argued that Jesus Serrano, 17-4-2, was not exactly “a walk in the park type of opponent”. He never threatened to pull out when he was 8 pounds over the contract weight 48 hours before the weigh-in. He simply went out there and destroyed a credible opponent in less than 2 rounds to secure his rating with the WBO and hopefully open the eyes of the other ranking organizations.

I cannot sit here and tell you that Avery Marcus Sparrow will win the world title but I can tell you that after 49 years in this sometimes wonderful, sometimes rancid business of professional boxing, I am grateful that he believes in me as much as I believe in him. I’m not going to worry if, when the money comes in, that some moron on the street will fill his head with negative thoughts about me. That’s part of the business, but as I head to the top of the stretch of my career, I am enjoying the ride.

Sparrow is 10-1 (4) and turned 24 in January. He turned professional in July of 2014 winning his first 4 fight, 2 by stoppage, before losing for the only time in his career so far by DQ in the 6th and final round to Jerome Rodriguez, 6-3-3, in October of 2015. He came back in March of 2016 to score a first round knockout in Dubai Night Life in Charlotte, NC.

Sparrow didn’t fight again until March of 2017 when he was pitted against one time Philly prospect Anthony Burgin, 10-2, when he won an 8 round split decision. In June he was up in The Sands in Bethlehem, PA, defeating Isaelin Florian, 6-0, of the DR and Reading, PA. In September he was put in with another 6-0 boxer named Joey Laviolette from Nova Scotia, Canada who he defeated by majority decision in 8 rounds. Two months later he defeated Lopez, who was 19-1-1 (14), at the MGM National Harbor, in Oxon Hill, MD. This put him into the WBO Super Featherweight ratings.

In December of 2015 Peltz took Camden’s Jason Sosa who was 18-1-3, on a trip to a world championship. Sosa only had one 10 round bout prior to this. Sosa was pitted with Nicholas Walters the WBA World Super Featherweight champion who Sosa drew with in a non-title bout. In his next fight in June of 2016 Sosa defeated Javier Fortuna in Beijing, China, for the world title that Walters had given up.

Will Peltz lead Avery Sparrow to a world super featherweight title the same way? Only time will tell!

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J. Russell Peltz Reflects on his Favorite Fights in Atlantic City


Boxing in Atlantic City has been prevalent for more than 45 years. One man who has been in the center of a lot of the action on the boardwalk has been International Boxing and Atlantic City Boxing Hall-of-Fame promoter and matchmaker J Russell Peltz.

The Philadelphia legend, who has promoted scores of cards in the shore town, is making matches for the February 24 card at The Showboat Hotel that will feature Thomas “Cornflake” LaManna vs. Gabriel “Tito” Bracero in a 10-round battle for the WBC Fecarbox Welterweight championship.

“I did my first fight in 1973,” said Peltz, who has run shows in just about every property in Atlantic City.

It is only fitting that Peltz is the matchmaker with promoter Rising Star Promotions in the South Jersey based promotional outfit’s effort to bring Atlantic City back to prominence as the the premier fight destination on the East Coast.

Peltz is hoping LaManna-Bracero is added to the memorable bouts that Peltz has been involved in Atlantic City:

1. August 31, 1981 at The Sands Hotel–Frank Fletcher vs Ernie Singletary.(PRISM)

“The fight was televised by local cable channel PRISM (Jim Barniak and Bob Wright, both deceased, did the commentary) and it was for Fletcher’s USBA middleweight title.

“This was the most brutal fight I ever saw, even more brutal than Matthew Saad Muhammad-Marvin Johnson I. This was a closet classic since few saw it on PRISM. The fight was toe-to-toe for seven rounds, no knockdowns, until ringside doctor stopped it between the seventh and eighth round. They coukd have fought this one in a phone booth.

“Singletary was taken to hospital after fight.

“Later, when we couldn’t find Fletcher, we broke into his hotel room, and he was out cold on the floor. We couldn’t get an ambulance so we (Marty Feldman and I) put him in the back of a police wagon and rode with him to the hospital where the doctor told us if we hadn’t found him he would have been dead.

“Singletary kept saying in the pre-fight buildup that no 12-2 TV fighter was gonna beat him. This was a reference to Fletcher getting into the first ESPN tournament and winning while Singletary had been plying his trade for years (24-2 then) and never got that kind of exposure, just on PRISM. Actually, Fletcher already had been on NBC once, beating Norberto Sabater.”

2. September 9, 1980 from Resorts–Mike Rossman vs. Al Bolden (PRISM)

“Ex-WBA light-heavyweight Rossman was getting beat up every round for 8 1/2 rounds against Al Bolden, of Pittsburgh, PA, and finally found a little light late in round 9 and came on to knock Bolden out at 2:32 of the 10th round and salvage the win. Bolden took the second knockdown in the 10th on his knees.”

3. March 13, 1983 from Resorts–Jeff Chandler – Gaby Canizalez (ABC)

“Jeff Chandler, in the most brilliant performance of his Hall-of-Fame career out-boxed, out-punched and out-muscled future champion Gaby Canizales, of Texas, over 15 rounds to defend his WBA bantamweight title for the seventh time by unanimous decision. No one thought he could stand up under Canizales’ body attack but it was Chandler’s body and head attack that kept Canizales at bay for the entire fight. Just magnificent.”

4. March 2, 1985 from the Sands Hotel–Gary Hinton vs Aaron Pryor (ABC)

“Unknown lefty Gary Hinton gave IBF 140 pound world champ Aaron Pryor all he could handle, but a 14th-round knockdown helped Pryor gain a 15-round split decision with Sylvester Stallone in attendance. He was our partner at the time with Pryor. It was Pryor’s last successful title defense.”

5. November 19, 2011 from Ballys–Garrett Wilson vs. Chuck Mussachio

“Moving from light heavyweight to cruiserweight, Mussachio appeared to have out-boxed Wilson for 11 rounds in their USBA cruiserweight title fight, but Wilson drilled Mussachhio with a monstrous overhand right 41 seconds into the 12th round for the knockout win.”

Besides LaManna vs. Bracero, a terrific undercard has been assembled featuring undefeated fighters: light-heavyweight Frederick Julan (8-0, 6 KOs), of Brooklyn, NY; super middleweight Darren Goodall (5-0, 4 KOs), of New Milford, NJ; middleweight Omar Kabary Salem (1-0), of Brooklyn, NY; super lightweight Jahmal Dyer (4-0, 2 KOs), of Baltimore, MD.

FIGHT NIGHT TICKETS: $150, $80 and $55 and can be purchased at: www.risingboxingpromotions.com

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Peltz Boxing Returns to 2300 Arena with an All Philly Main Event Friday


By: Ken Hissner

IBHOF Promoter J Russell Peltz continues his tradition of Philly fighters fighting one another at the 2300 Arena in South Philly Friday night. In the Main Event he features Super welterweights Isaiah Wise against Fred Jenkins, Jr. There are 10 bouts scheduled with BAM Boxing’s Brittany Rogers also co-promoting and helping with the matchmaking.

Wise, 5-1 (3), has fought all his 6 fights at the 2300 Arena. Jenkins has fought his last 6 fights at the same venue. His father and trainer Fred Jenkins, Sr., is a PA BHOF trainer out of the ABC Rec Gym in North Philly.

In the co-feature Philly’s Super featherweight Avery Sparrow, 7-1 (3), taking on Canadian Joey Laviolette, 6-0 (4), of Sackville, Nova Scotia. The latter is a 4-time Canadian National Champion. Sparrow is 2-0 in 2017.

Philly’s Super welterweight Elijah Vines, 4-0 (4), is making his home debut against Gilbert Alex Sanchez, 5-7-1 (2), of Camden, NJ, who is coming back from 2 years of inactivity. Highly touted welterweight prospect Julian “Hammer Hands” Rodriguez, 15-0 (10), of Hasbrouck Heights, NJ, returns to action after 10 months taking on Dario “Macizo” Ferman, 14-2 (11), of Chihuahua, MEX.

Also on the under card are Philly welterweight prospect Marcel Rivers, 2-0 (1), Upper Darby Super welterweight Brandon Robinson, 5-1 (4), Philly lightweight Jae Ho Kim, 6-4-1 (2) formerly of South Korea, Philly debuting middleweight Leon DeShields and PR Super lightweight Victor Padilla, 3-0 (2), of Berlin, NJ, who is another good prospect will be among those on the undercard.
USA Comcast SportsNet will televise.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Golovkin, Shields, Lomachenko, and more…


Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of July 25th to August 1st, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.


Photo Credit: HBO Sports

Gennady Golovkin Will Defend All his World Title Belts When he Faces Canelo Alvarez

Undefeated World Middleweight Champion GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN wants to make one thing clear. On Saturday, September 16, when he faces Canelo Alvaraez, Golovkin is walking into the ring at the T-Mobile Arena the same way he walked out of the ring at Madison Square Garden, in his last fight — wearing all his world championship belts.

“GGG will be proudly defending all of his titles — WBC, WBA, IBF, and IBO — as well as looking to add The Ring magazine title to his collection when he steps into the ring against Canelo,” said Tom Loeffler, Golovkin’s promoter. “Fans love this matchup. It’s not only the two best fighters in their division fighting each other in their prime, but also two of the most marketable fighters in the sport.”

Canelo vs. Golovkin is a 12-round fight for the middleweight championship of the world presented by Golden Boy Promotions and GGG Promotions and sponsored by Tecate, BORN BOLD, Hennessy, Never Stop, Never Settle, O’Reilly Auto Parts, Fred Loya Insurance, Fathom Events, Tsesnabank, and Capital Holdings. The event will take place Saturday, Sept. 16 at T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 8:00 p.m. ET/5:00 p.m. PT.
Episode #1 of 24/7 Canelo/Golovkin premieres Saturday, Aug. 26 on HBO immediately following the live World Championship Boxing doubleheader from the StubHub Center at 9:45 p.m. ET/PT.

HBO Sports Special Under the Lights: Canelo/Golovkin Debuts September 2nd

HBO Sports, widely acclaimed for its innovative and provocative boxing programming, examines the upcoming HBO Pay-Per-View® showdown between the two best middleweights today –Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin — when UNDER THE LIGHTS: CANELO/GOLOVKIN debuts SATURDAY, SEPTEMBER 2 (10:00-10:20 p.m. ET/PT) on HBO.

The special will also be available on HBO NOW, HBO GO® and HBO On Demand®, and at hbo.com/boxing, as well as other new media platforms.

In an intimate and unvarnished setting, UNDER THE LIGHTS: CANELO/GOLOVKIN will feature an engaging roundtable conversation hosted by HBO Boxing commentator Max Kellerman, combatants Canelo Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin and HBO boxing analyst and four-division champion Roy Jones, Jr., as they breakdown and examine the many skills and experiences each fighter will bring into the ring for the best boxing matchup of 2017. It’s the final time the two will see each other until fight week unfolds in Las Vegas.

For more information, visit hbo.com/boxing; become a fan on Facebook at facebook.com/HBOBoxing; and follow on Twitter and Instagram at @HBOBoxing. Follow the conversation using #CaneloGGG.

“Canelo vs. Golovkin” takes place Saturday, September 16 at the T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 8:00 p.m. (ET)/ 5:00 p.m. (PT).

Super Channel to Air Vasyl Lomachenko vs. Miguel Marriaga in Canada

Super Channel subscribers in Canada will have the opportunity to watch superstar Vasyl Lomachenko, arguably the No. 1 pound-for-pound professional boxer in the world today, as the Ukrainian defends his World Boxing Organization (WBO) Association Junior Lightweight World Championship for the second time, this Saturday night (August 5), starting at 10 p.m. ET / 7 p.m. PT, live from Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles.

The 29-year-old Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs) will be challenged by two-time world title challenger, dangerous Colombian knockout artist Miguel “The Scorpian” Marriaga (25-2, 21 KOs), the WBO No. 10-ranked contender, in the 12-round main event.
Three exciting fights on the stacked “Lomachenko vs, Marriaga” card, promoted by Top Rank, will air exclusively in Canada on Super Channel.

Super Channel has recently aired major boxing events live like Brook vs. Spence Jr., Pacquiao-Horn, and Eubank, Jr. vs.
Abraham.

“we are all ecstatic to be bringing this exciting bout featuring one of the world’s best boxers, Vasyl Lomachenko, to our viewers and to be presenting another top-notch card from legendary promoter, Top Rank’s Bob Arum, to Canadian fight fans,” said Troy Wassill. Director of Programming, Domestic Distributors & Sports for Super Channel.

Lomachenko is regarded by many as the greatest amateur boxer of his time and arguably all-time having captured two Olympic gold medals (2008 & 2012) and three World Championships, reportedly losing only once in 396 amateur bouts.

Eight (7-1) of his nine fights during his three-year pro career have been in world title fights, including world title winning performances in two different weight classes, WBO featherweight and junior lightweight. Lomachenko has defeated world champions Gary Russell, Jr., Roman Martinez and Nicholas Walters.

Marriaga, who is moving up to junior lightweight to challenge Lomachenko, is a battled-tested challenger with good power and a strong amateur background.

In the 12-round co-feature, NABO & NABF lightweight champion “Sugar” Raymundo Beltran (33-7-1, 21 KOs) defends his titles against former two-time Interim World Boxing Association (WBA) Super Featherweight World Champion Bryan Vasquez (36-2, 19 KOs).

Mexico-native Beltran, fighting out of Phoenix (AZ), is a two-time world title challenger who is knocking on the door for another world title shot. Beltran is ranked No. 2 in the world by the WBO, World Boxing Council (WBC) and International Boxing Federation (IBF), as well as No. 6 by the WBA.

Vasquez, fighting out of Costa Rico, is rated the No. 1 lightweight contender in the world by the WBA
In the eight-round Super Channel opener, 2012 Olympic silver medalist Esquiva Falcao (17-0, 12 KOs), the undefeated Brazilian middleweight, steps up in terms of class opposition to face Ivan “Terrible” Montero (20-2, 8 KOs), of Mexico.

To see the “Lomachenko vs. Marriaga” live, as well as more exciting boxing to come, fight fans in Canada can contact their local cable provider to subscribe to Super Channel and all that it offers, including premium series, movies and much more, for as low as $9.95 per month.

Sadam Ali Captures WBA International Welterweight Title and Third Straight Victory with Decision Win Against Johan Perez

Sadam “The World Kid” Ali (25-1, 14 KOs) took a decisive step towards once again fighting for a world title tonight with a unanimous decision victory against former two-time interim WBA Super Lightweight champion Johan “El Terrible” Perez (22-4-4, 15 KOs). The 10-round fight, which earned Ali the vacant WBA International Welterweight, was the main event of the latest edition of Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN from Casino Del Sol in Tucson, Arizona.

Ali, from Brooklyn, NY, fought in one of the toughest fights of his career against Perez, a native of Caracas, Venezuela, who had scored wins against the likes of Yoshihiro “El Maestrito” Kamegai, Paul Spadafora and Steve “2POUND” Forbes.

“I give myself a 6 tonight; I felt off,” said Sadam Ali. “Perez was tough, very tall and awkward, and I was able to see that I have a lot to work on to be honest. I felt that my movement wasn’t right. I felt slow and off balance. I’m not too happy with my performance. I don’t want to make excuses, but my performance wasn’t as good as I expected. Now it’s time to go back to the gym and work on things I need to work on. That’s how I’ll get better, by seeing my mistakes and getting back to work in the gym.”

“I need rugged fights like this. Johan might not have a big name but he came to fight and not only for a paycheck. So, these kinds of fights are exactly what I need to get into title contention.”

In the televised co-main event, Alejandro “El Elegido” Barrera (27-3, 17 KOs) of Nuevo León, México scored a split decision victory against Eddie “E-Boy” Gomez (20-3, 11 KOs) of the Bronx, NY in a 10-round Welterweight bout.

Barrera, who is a student of the Hall of Fame trainer Ignacio “Nacho” Beristáin, brought a busy style from the outside that nullified Gomez’s counter-punching offense. When Gomez would try to counter, Barrera would step back and throw counters of his own. Or, like in sixth round, Barrera would simply overwhelm Gomez with volume punching.

During an explosive seventh round exchange, Barrera was cut by a headbutt above his right eye. Then, only a few seconds later, Gomez dropped Barrera with a thunderous counter left hook. The back and forth action continued into the final rounds, with Barrera winning by two scores of 93-96, while one judge it 95-94 for Gomez.

“I feel very happy with the victory, but at the same time I feel tired because it was a tough fight,” said Alejandro Barrera. “There were many headbutts. He is a very dirty fighter, but I already knew his boxing was fast-paced. I studied it and trained for it. Now, I’ve got to rest and continue training hard.”

Pablo “The Shark” Rubio, Jr. (10-0, 3 KOs) of Los Angeles, California scored a tough split decision victory against David Perez (8-2, 4 KOs) of Houston, Texas in a non-televised swing bout. Two judges scored the fight for Rubio with scores of 58-56 and 59-55, while one judge scored the fight 60-54 for Perez.

Topping off the ESPN3 live stream, Patrick Teixeira (27-1, 22 KOs) cruised to a unanimous decision victory against Andrew “Hurricane” Hernandez (19-6-1, 9 KOs) of Phoenix, Arizona in an eight-round super welterweight collision.
Teixeira, a native of Santa Catarina, Brazil, used his rangy southpaw stance to box from the outside and to set up straight left hands to the head and left hooks to the body. However, in fifth round, Teixeira injured his left hand, which forced him to rely on his jab and footwork even more for the later stretch of the fight.

Although he was cut below his left eye in the eighth and final round, Teixeira earned an easy victory after not having fought since his first defeat in May of 2016. Teixeira won with two scores of 80-72 and one score of 79-73.

Kicking off the ESPN3 live stream, Daquan “King” Arnett (16-1 9 KOs) of Winter Park, Florida shook off an almost two-year layoff by cruising to a unanimous decision victory against Tijuana, Mexico’s Jorge “Pantera” Silva (21-14-2, 17 KOs) in an eight-round super welterweight fight. Arnett controlled the action throughout the fight by calmly walking Silva down from one side of the ring to the other, using touch jabs to blind Silva before unleashing hard combinations to the head and body.

Silva was deducted a point in sixth round for holding Arnett excessively. After two more rounds of boxing, Arnett earned himself three scores of 80-71.

In the first fight of the evening, Alfredo Escarcega (3-0) scored a majority decision victory against Rodolfo “Rudy” Gamez (1-4) in a four-round super lightweight fight.

Another All Philly War in Line as Wise-Jenkins Collide

It may be just a six-round fight, but the match between North Philadelphia junior middleweights Isaiah Wise and Fred Jenkins, Jr., is sure to be treated by the fans like a main event when the fighters collide Friday evening, Sept. 8, at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia.

Topping the 10-bout card is an eight-round junior lightweight contest between Avery Sparrow, of Philadelphia, and former four-time Canadian national amateur champion Joey Laviolette, of Nova Scotia, Canada. First fight begins at 7.30 p.m.
Wise ( above left), 25, is a relative newcomer, having compiled a 5-1 record since turning pro early in 2016. He has scored three knockouts, losing only by decision to Philly-killer Roque Zapata, of Culpeper, VA.

In two fights this year against Wisconsin-based fighters, Wise got off the canvas to stop Jeffrey Wright in four rounds and he outpointed Mark Daniels over six.

Jenkins,30, is the veteran of the two, owning a 10-4 record since turning pro in 2011. He has scored three knockouts and he is managed and trained by his dad, Fred Jenkins, Sr., an ex-pro junior middleweight himself and a member of the Pennsylvania Boxing Hall of Fame as a trainer.

The biggest win on the resume of Jenkins, Jr. came in 2014 when he knocked out Jeremy Trussell, of Baltimore, MD, in four rounds at the 2300 Arena. He also has defeated Alex Sanchez, of Camden, NJ, and Ibrihim Shabazz, of Newark, NJ.

Wise has had all six of his professional fights at the 2300 Arena. Jenkins is 4-3 in the building.

In an era where Philadelphia fighters often balk at fighting each other, neither Wise nor Jenkins appear to have a problem with the match.

“Fighting someone from the same city doesn’t bother me at all,” said Wise. “This is a business and this fight will show me where I stand.”

Jenkins: “It’s all about winning. I’m trying to climb the ladder and if I beat Wise then I can get another shot at Zapata.”

Zapata, who fights Elijah Vines, of Philadelphia, on the same card, owns victories over both Wise and Jenkins, both by decision, both at the 2300 Arena.

The only other foe common to both Wise and Jenkins is James Robinson, of York, PA. Wise and Jenkins each defeated Robinson by decision, Wise over four rounds and Jenkins over six.

Seven additional bouts complete the Sept. 8 card. Among those featured will be welterweight Marcel Rivers, junior welterweight Victor Padilla and featherweight Crystian Peguero.

Mayweather Promotions Announces the 8th Titans of the Trade: Breakfast of Champions at MGM Grand

Mayweather Promotions is preparing for this signature event for the 8th consecutive time! Titans of the Trade: Breakfast of Champions is set to take place on the morning of the Mayweather vs. McGregor weigh-in, Friday, August 25 at MGM Grand. This event celebrates the continuous achievements of individuals who are influencers the sports and entertainment world to make it what it is today.

This year’s theme is Dream, Conquer, and Sparkle-exemplifying the acknowledgement of those who have shined or sparkled in their respective professional fields. The ability to shine bright within the industry is noteworthy and deserves recognition and presentation of one of our prestigious awards.

Honorees from our 2016 Titans of the Trade affair include: first African American VP in Major League Baseball history; Marian Rhodes, former WBC World Champion; Alicia Ashley, 2016 Olympian; Vashti Cunningham, Chi-Town’s finest breakers; The Monster Kids, and Premier Boxing Champions’ President of Boxing Operations; Sylvia Browne-Owens. Honorees to be recognized at the upcoming event include: multi-talented musician and actress; Tally, undefeated boxing world champion and MMA fighter; Heather Hardy, UC-Riverside’s top performing female basketball player; Simone Decoud, former UNLV softball coach; Shan McDonald, and remarkable boxing referee; Sparkle Lee.
Honorees:

Young Trailblazer Award recipient- Tally is an up and coming multi-talented rap artist, songwriter, actress and musician from sunny Nashville, Tennessee. Growing up, Tally took interest into becoming an artist when she began making YouTube covers, landed lead roles in her school plays, and starting playing the guitar, which helped her songwriting skills.

Music always played an important role in her life and that landed her a star role in the second season of Lifetime’s The Rap Game. After being eliminated after the first episode, she didn’t let that deter her future success. She continued to focus on her music career, ultimately landed her another opportunity on the third season of The Rap Game, as well as performing at the 2017 Radio Disney Awards.
Young Trailblazer Award recipient- Simone Decoud has made headlines due to her continuous success as a point guard at UC-Riverside. This Riverside native has been a three-time, All-Big West Honoree, who has averaged 11.5 points, 5.9 rebounds, and 3.1 assists per game this season. Simone has finished her junior year in college as the team’s seventh all-time leading scorer and second on the career assists list and expects to graduate with a degree in Media Cultural Studies. After graduating, she will look to begin her professional basketball career overseas.

Golden Glove Award recipient- Heather “The Heat” Hardy has let her talent do all the talking. She has contributed to diversifying the sports industry by her remarkable success as a female boxer and strength through her continuous achievements in the industry. Being a single mother and a professional boxer has come with a lot of hard-work and dedication but Heather has conquered her adversities through recognition in combat-sports. Her most recent achievement was her TKO win at her MMA debut against Alice Yauger on June 24th. Heather is also unbeaten in the boxing ring with 20 wins, 4 KO’s and the WBC super bantamweight & featherweight world titlesTitans of the Trade Award recipient- Shan McDonald was inducted into the UNLV Athletics Hall of Fame after leading the Rebels to 511 victories in 17 seasons, seven-straight NCAA tournaments from 1990-96, and three appearances in the Women’s College World Series. The former UNLV softball coach drove her team to break, or tie, 30 school records, which helped earn her the ‘all-time winnings coach’s title. She has proven to be a true titan in sports.

Meritorious Achievement Award recipient- Sparkle Lee has lead a reputable career as a boxing referee that has helped reshape the image of the ‘third man in the ring’ for all women. She has made history on countless occasions including as the first female referee to be inducted in the International Boxing Hall of Fame. Her love for boxing started as a routine workout at Gleason’s Gym in the 80’s and transpired into a career of 30+ years, paving the way for female referees to follow.
In addition to our honorees, the event will be hosted by, TV personality and fashion designer; Angel Brinks. Plus 2 special guest performances by talented Las Vegas native; Cabria Anderson and singer and songwriter, Jade Novah.

This year’s Titans of the Trade: Breakfast of Champions- Dream, Conquer, & Sparkle is sponsored by: The Money Team, Mayweather Sports, MGM Grand, SHOWTIME, FNOM, Screaming Images BoxRaw, Alexandre Crepin, Fight Label, Versace Fragrances, Smooth Operators Salon, Too Pretty Brand, and PINTA USA.

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“Hammering” Hank Lundy & Jaron “Boots” Ennis in Philly Friday!


“Hammering” Hank Lundy & Jaron “Boots” Ennis in Philly Friday!
By: Ken Hissner

Lightweight “Hammering” Hank Lundy, 27-6-1 (13), returns to Philadelphia for the first time since 2009. Also on the card is Philly’s welterweight Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 11-0 (9), the best looking prospect in Philadelphia since 1984 Olympian Meldrick Taylor. Peltz Boxing, BAM Boxing and now Raging Babe continue to bring the fans competitive bouts.

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Peltz is an IBHOF promoter and matchmaker. Brittany Rogers is one of the youngest promoter-matchmakers in the country and though in her 20’s knows her boxing especially learning from Peltz who goes back to 1969 when he promoted his first show.

There was a press conference Wednesday night at the Xfinity Center in South Philadelphia. There are eleven bouts scheduled but by fight night Friday several will probably be cut out. Boxing Director Greg Sirb gets quite upset when there are more than seven bouts. Raging Babe speaks Spanish and was able to speak to the main event opponent of Lundy in Danny Evangelista, Jr., 20-7-2 (16), from Mexico City in a scheduled 8 round bout.

Lundy is quite outspoken and though failed in a title fight with unbeaten Terrance Crawford at 140 proclaims he will be the 135 champ. He has lost 3 of his last 5 fights and was backed by his promoter from CES Promotions out of Rhode Island telling all in attendance about Lundy fighting Crawford with an injury.

When boxers return to their home base Peltz said in so many words they are at the end of their career. Lundy is 33 and in his eleventh year of boxing. He has returned to his trainer “Cornbread” Ramey who is one of the most respected trainers in Philadelphia.

On the other hand Ennis is trained by his father “Bozy” Ennis who may be the best or one of the best trainers in the city and runs “Bozy’s Dungeon” in the Kensington section of Philadelphia. His son has won all 11 fights in but his fourteenth month since turning professional in April of 2016 under manager Cameron Dunkin. Dunkin chose Chris Middendorf’s Victory Promotions instead of Top Rank who are one and have been one of the best promotional groups in the country for years. Middendorf promoted a pair of shows in Philadelphia and hopefully won’t be returning after the mismatches he put on. Ennis has fought 6 of his 11 fights in Philadelphia and another in close by Bristol, PA. His bout is against Wilfredo “EllZurdo” Acuna, 16-20 (12), of Mauagua, NIC, scheduled for 6 rounds.

Also on hand were super welterweight Mark Daniels, Jr., 3-0 (1), a Native American from Crandon, WI, who as Peltz said was “not hesitant to come to Philadelphia to fight a Philadelphian in Isaiah Wise, 4-1 (3), who is a tough opponent and that’s the way Peltz does his matchmaking putting on competitive fights. This is for 6 rounds.

Well known trainer Don Turner now having a camp in Arapahoe, NC, is from the Philadelphia and brings in a pair of boxers to debut here knowing this area will develop out of town boxers as it did in “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler and Eddie Mustapha Muhammad. He has brought with him super welterweight Ishmael Altman who will face Philadelphia’s Tyree Crowder also in his debut. The other from NC is southpaw Heriberto Polanco who will fight Brooklyn’s Omar Kabary Salem, both in their debuts.

In a welterweight bout two out of state boxers face each other in a 6 round bout in Juan Reyna, 6-6-1 (2), of Brownsville, TX, against Alvin “Iron Majik” Varmall, Jr., 10-0-1 (8), of Catskill, NY. Philadelphia’s prospect Scott Kelleher, 5-0 (3), is returning to action after 13 months and will meet Dion Richardson, 1-1 (1), of Newark, NJ. Another prospect from Philadelphia is Crystian Peguero, 1-0 (1), who made his debut in March. He will meet Saquan Felton, 0-1, from Rochester, NY. Peltz said “I’m bringing a match between lightweight Marko Bailey, 4-0 (3), of Durham, NC, and Vinnie Denierio, 1-1 (10) of Geneva, NY, who I was told was a barnburner in their recent meeting.

Peltz doesn’t always care if the boxers are from the city if he knows they will give the fans something to cheer about.
Philadelphia’s super lightweight Nahir Albright, 1-1 (0), will meet debuting Sultan Zamir Uulu, of KYR now living in Philadelphia. Finally Philadelphia’s welterweight Marcel Rivers, 1-0 (1), meets Jamaal Gregory, 1-0 (1), of Charlotte, NC.

First bout is at 7:30PM and you know a Peltz show always starts on time. It is at the 2300 Arena at 2300 S. Swanson St. at the Front and Oregon area. Peltz said the event is already sold out.

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Showtime’s Wild Saturday Boxing Card: Davis and Russell Victorious


Showtimes’ Wild Saturday Boxing Card: Davis and Russell Victorious
By: Sean Crose

Liam Walsh, 21-0, took a crack at the IBF junior lightweight title when he took on American champ Gervanta Davis, 17-0, in a sold out Copper Box arena in London.

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Smith showed some nice range in the first, then refused to sit down in his corner. Davis, however, remained patient throughout the second, exuding terrific confidence in the process. It may have been a somewhat even round in the eyes of viewers and judges, but Davis acted as if he was completely in control. Perhaps he knew what would happen, for in the third he put his man down after several seconds of firing heavy shots. The Englishman got up, but that was polished off a few sharp punches later, when referee Michael Alexander wisely stopped the bout.

Showtime, which broadcast the bout, then went across the Atlantic to showcase a card live from the MGM National Harbor in Maryland. First up was Rances Barthelemy, the 25-0 junior welterweight from Vegas by way of Cuba. Barthelemy’s opponent was 21-1 Belarus native Kiryl Relikh. Barthelemy was well regarded walking into the fight, but Relikh had his man in trouble after dropping Barthelemy in round five. To add to the suspense, Barthelemy dropped Relikh three rounds later. It was an interesting, competitive bout and there was much unhappiness when Barthlemy ended up winning by UD via some very wide scores.

The controversy was followed up by super middleweight Andre Dirrell, 25-2 facing Jose Uzcategui, 26-1, for the chance to face multi-titlist James DeGale (for Dirrell, that fight would be a rematch). The first round wasn’t overly eventful, but Dirrell was jostled by Uzcategui in the second. Indeed, it looked like the man might go down. Dirrell, however, was able to survive the round. What’s more, he was able to work effectively at points, but Uzcategui remained aggressive.

Dirrell came back in the third by employing a very impressive jab and slick defense. By the fourth, Dirrell was in fine form, jabbing and keeping away from his foe proficiently. And Dirrell continued to keep Uzcategui from taking complete control throughout the middle of the fight. Then, at the end of the 8th, Dirrell was hammered after the bell. Referee Bill Clancy subsequently disqualified Uzcategui. Afterward, a rumble erupted and at least one member of Dirrell’s team took shots at Uzcategui.

Word came out that Maryland police were looking for Dirrell’s uncle while essentially keeping Uzcategui in protective custody. It was also reported that Dirrell’s brother may have become violent with a commission member. An ugly scene all around.

It was time for the main event. Featherweight Gary Russell, 27-1, looked to hop back into the public consciousness by looking impressive against 25-2 Oscar Escandon. It was Russell’s second defense of his WBC world title and he had the comfort of fighting within his home state of Maryland. Columbia’s Escandon, however, was planning to make the most of this opportunity. Russell, one of the sports’ more impressive slicksters, may have told the tale in the first round, but Escandon was able to get in his shots.

Both men traded shots effectively in the second, making it a fast paced, close quarters round. Russell, however, was able to drop his man in the third. Escandon got to his feet, but Russell was finding his mark and landing with noticeable power. By the end of the round, Russell was landing hard and often enough to make one wonder if the man would run out of gas should Escandon refuse to be stopped. Russell never had to worry about it. For he stopped Escandon in round seven after what was an exciting, high octane bout. Escandon was a true warrior, but referee Harvey Dock had seen enough of Russell’s power shots landing clean.

To his credit, Russell apologized for the wild antics of the evening – even though they had nothing to him. Boxing could use more of that kind of class.

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Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Gary Russell Jr. vs. Oscar Escandon


Showtime World Championship Boxing Preview: Gary Russell Jr. vs. Oscar Escandon
By: Seamus McNally

On Saturday night, WBC featherweight champion “Mr.” Gary Russell Jr. (27–1, 16 KOs) of Capitol Heights, Md. makes his long-awaited home debut when he takes Colombia’s Oscar Escandon (25–2, 17 KOs) at the MGM National Harbor in Oxon Hill, Md.

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Photo Credit: Tom Casino/Showtime

The bout caps the night of a split-site four fight broadcast on Showtime Championship Boxing. First up, IBF junior lightweight champion Gervonta “Tank” Davis (17–0, 16 KOs) of Baltimore, Md. travels across the pond into hostile territory to risk his undefeated record against fellow unbeaten Liam Walsh (21–0, 14 KOs) at the Copper Box Arena in London. Once that bout is complete, the televised bouts from the MGM National Harbor will commence.

The first televised fight in Maryland will be a 12-round junior welterweight title eliminator between Cuba’s Rances Barthelemy (25–0, 13 KOs), who will be moving up from lightweight, and Kiryl Relikh (21–1, 19 KOs) of Belarus. The co-feature bout is a 12-rounder for the interim IBF super middleweight title between Andre Dirrell (25–2, 16 KOs) of Flint, Mich. and Venezuelan Jose Uzcategui (26–1, 22 KOs).

Russell, 28, entered the professional ranks in 2009 with high expectations, having won numerous amateur national titles, earning a bronze medal in the 2007 world amateur championships, and making the 2008 U.S. Olympic Team.

Russell was a very active fighter early in his career, and by the end of his third year as a professional, he had accumulated a record of 19–0, 11 KOs and was named 2011 Prospect of the Year by the likes of ESPN, Ring Magazine, and Sports Illustrated.

After padding his record for a few more years against modest opposition, Russell got his first crack at a world title in June 2014 against two-time Olympic gold medalist Vasyl Lomachenko. Russell was outclassed and lost a 12-round decision.

Russell won a shutout decision against Christopher Martin that December and then got his second chance at a world title in March 2015. The outcome was different this time as Russell blitz WBC champion Jhonny Gonzalez en route to a fourth-round knockout win.

In his most recent fight, Russell obliterated the overmatched Patrick Hyland in the second round of their fight, which took place 13 months ago in April 2016.

Escandon, 32, was an Olympian himself, representing Colombia in the 2004 Athens Games. Unlike Russell, Escandon entered the paid ranks inconspicuously, building his record in his homeland save for two fights in Argentina and two in Panama before making his U.S. debut in 2014.

By the time Escandon reached U.S. soil, he sported a record of 23–1, 16 KOs. In his U.S. debut in December 2014 on ESPN Friday Night Fights, Escandon was awarded a very controversial decision over Canadian Tyson Cave that elicited an epic rant from color commentator Teddy Atlas once the decision was rendered.

Like Russell, Escandon fought only once in each of the last two years. In April 2015, Escandon lost a close split decision to the undefeated Moises Flores. In his most recent fight, which took place in March 2016 at the D.C. Armory, Escandon scored a seventh-round knockout of Mexico’s Robinson Castellanos.

For the first time in a long while, Russell will enjoy a height advantage in the fight. Escandon is one of the shortest fighters in all of boxing, standing at just 5’1″. Because of his short stature, Escandon tends to throw looping shots to try and reach his opponents’ heads. He puts constant pressure on his opponents, always moving forward. Escandon does not move his head much, as he usually just holds his gloves up, blocking and eating punches as he tries to walk his opponents down to get in punching range.

Russell has arguably the fastest hands in all of boxing, and knows how to use it. Some fighters rely too much on their speed and are not technically sound and get caught (Amir Khan), whereas Russell patiently sets up his shots, and is almost never out of position.

Escandon has one chance to win this fight. The only knock on Russell is that he always throws his punches at the same speed, never varies them up. The saying is timing beats speed, so Escandon may be able to time one of Russell’s punches and connect flush with a looping shot over the top and hurt Russell.

I look for Russell to establish his sharp jab early, and use good lateral movement to keep the charging Escandon at bay. Russell will take out Escandon in the middle rounds, as the blazing combinations will be too much for Escandon to withstand.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: McGregor, Mayweather, Briggs, Davis, Russell, and more…


Boxing Insider Notebook: McGregor, Mayweather, Briggs, Davis, Russell, and more…
By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of May 2nd to May 9th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

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Dana White Giving Up on McGregor vs. Mayweather?

Dana White was recently on Colin Cowherd’s show “The Herd” and he appeared to be growing tired of the negotiations to make McGregor vs. Mayweather and may be ready to give up on making the fight.

When asked if he was growing “tired of Mayweather’s crap” he responded, “It’s not even Mayweather. It’s not even Mayweather, it’s definitely both sides.” He went on to state, “It’s not just Mayweather, it’s both sides of this thing are going to be hard to get done. And absolutely, there’s going to be a point where I’m done. This isn’t what I do, this isn’t my business, and I’m definitely going to walk away.”

Dana White also stated earlier that Golovkin vs. Canelo took the planned date for Mayweather vs. McGregor. Is the planned fight between boxing and MMA’s biggest stars done? It’s doesn’t look good.
Julio Cesar Chavez Criticizes Junior’s Effort

CBS Sports recently reported on Julio Cesar Chavez Senior’s thoughts on his son’s efforts against Canelo Alvarez. In short, he wasn’t impressed.

Chavez Sr. simply stated, “ I am very disappointed.”

When asked about the weight, Chavez indicated he did not believe it had an impact. He stated, “No, no, no, no. Definitively no. It’s true, there is a sacrifice and everything, but I think here Julio lacked that thing that his father had more than enough of.”

Chavez further stated, “Yes, that’s the truth. He was too much of a conformist. I was asking him to throw more punches. That if he lost…that if he got knocked out that he give me a F—— round! That he gift me a f—- round throwing punches! I couldn’t make him understand!”

Read more at: http://www.cbssports.com/boxing/news/julio-cesar-chavez-rips-sons-effort-unwillingness-to-throw-punches-vs-canelo/

Floyd Mayweather Jr. Tells TMZ He Owes All His Success to his Dad

Floyd Mayweather Junior recently told TMZ that he owes his entire boxing empire to his pops!
Mayweather Jr. and Mayweather Sr. have a long history of arguments and periods of estrangement, so much so that Mayweather Sr. even offered to train fighters to defeat his son. However they appear to have a strong and health relationship.

Junior stated he owes “all the thanks to my Dad” and that Senior gave him the single most important piece of advise he ever got about his career, and he never forgot it.

Read more at http://www.tmz.com/2017/05/10/floyd-mayweather-sr-floyd-mayweather/

Shannon Briggs vs. Fres Oquendo Press Conference Quotes

Heavyweight contenders Shannon “The Cannon” Briggs and Fres Oquendo faced off for the first time today (Tuesday, May 9) before they battle for the WBA Heavyweight Championship on Saturday, June 3 in the main event of Backyard Brawl: Briggs vs. Oquendo taking place at Hard Rock Live at Seminole Hard Rock Hotel & Casino in Hollywood, Fla.

The two-time heavyweight champion Briggs and three-time title challenger Oquendo participated in a highly energetic press conference at Hard Rock Live as both men, along with representatives from their camps, proclaimed victory on June 3. Also in attendance were a trio of former Heavyweight champions who plan on attending fight night including Evander Holyfield, Riddick Bowe and Briggs’ trainer Chris Byrd, adding to the anticipation for the Heavyweight title bout.

Tickets are on sale now and are priced at $75, $100, $150, $250 and $500; ringside seats are sold for $1,000; ringside tables with six seats are $5,500 and 10 seats are $11,000 (plus a $5 Facility Maintenance fee applies). All seats are reserved and available at all Ticketmaster outlets online at www.myhrl.com, www.ticketmaster.com or charge by phone: 1-800-745-3000. *Additional fees may apply.

Here is what the participants had to say:

SHANNON BRIGGS

“This has been a long journey. Five years ago, I was depressed and out of the boxing game, but then my daughter was born. I took a stand. I said that I’m going to do this for her. Everyone doubted me. When I met with Kris Lawrence, he listened to me talk for hours on a Monday and then on Friday he called me and said ‘Let’s Go Champ!’ That was the beginning of the comeback.”

“I lost 145 pounds and I went around the world, meeting people and trying to inspire them, but they were inspiring me too. It’s a huge motivation to me to see these people and get the response from people who say that I was able to inspire them.”

“We’re here now. We got the shot. I look forward to becoming a champion for a third time. I’m fighting a very good fighter in Fres Oquendo. He’s a seasoned guy, but he’s out of his league. This isn’t his time.”

“I’ve heard things that he’s said about me, that it might be an easy fight. But he has no idea how motivated and how focused I am right now. I just can’t wait for the bell to ring so that the people can look up and see me smash him.”

“I’m coming out in the first round and I’m gunning for you. As soon as the bell rings, I’m coming to take your head off. If I don’t get you in the first, I’ll get you in the second. All the way to the 12th. I got Liakhovich at 2:59 of the last round and you might have to go that way too.”

“I’m happy and excited. The time is now. I’m home in Florida where I’ve lived for the last 18 years. I’m training like never before. I might have taken two weeks off in the last four years. I’m looking forward to glory. I want to see the people around the world saying “LETS GO CHAMP!”

FRES OQUENDO

“It’s a pleasure to be here for this historic event. Shannon and I go way back. We’re gentlemen of the sport. We carry ourselves with dignity. We’re going to go after it.”

“We actually shared a twin bill on my HBO debut in 2001. That was a special night for me. I’m thankful to Shannon for stepping up and facing a fighter of my caliber. I’m going to go in there with everything that I have. It’s not going to be easy in there for him.”

“I’m dedicating this fight to my son’s friend Jaxon King, who passed away last year at five years old. I have a non-profit that helps a lot of at risk youth in Chicago because I was one of those kids. They all mean so much to me and I’m going to have Jaxon in my heart that day and give me the extra edge to do what I have to do.”

“I’ve been in there with the best in the sport. This is a very special fight for me. This is life and death for me. I’ve fought everywhere in the world, sometimes I didn’t get the decision, but I’m going to bring it every time.”

“I hope to see everyone out there on fight night. It’s going to be a great night of boxing. I can’t wait to make history on June 3.”

Yafai: Joshua Has Inspired me to Unify the Division

Kal Yafai says Anthony Joshua MBE has set a new benchmark for British fighters to follow as he prepares to make the first defence of his WBA World Super-Flyweight title against Suguru Muranaka at the Barclaycard Arena in Birmingham on Saturday LIVE on AWE- A Wealth of Entertainment at 3 PM ET / 12 Noon PT.

For boxing fans who don’t have access to AWE, the fight will be available on the AWE channel on www.klowdtv.com

Yafai and Joshua are close from their days as Team GB teammates, and Yafai won the crown he defends on home turf this weekend on the undercard of Joshua’s win over Eric Molina in Manchester in December.
Yafai was unable to attend Joshua’s epic win over Wladimir Klitschko at Wembley Stadium last weekend, but the 27 year old was bursting with pride as Joshua KO’d the Ukrainian in the 11th round, and believes that Joshua has raised the bar higher than ever for British fighters.

“I was unbelievably proud and happy for Anthony Joshua,” said Yafai. “When he got put down I was very nervous, I was praying for him to get up and recover and that’s what he did. It showed what a World Champion needs to do when it gets tough in there.

“He has completely smashed it now, onto bigger and better things for him. The world is his oyster. It was such a hard and big fight. I’d like to see him fight Tyson Fury but it doesn’t sound like that’s possible to happen next. If he can get a defence for one of his Titles against a contender then move onto one of the other Heavyweights like Wilder would be great.

“I still see him regularly. We come on the Team GB squad together. He’s a good lad, one of the nicest people in boxing. He loves his boxing so much. He soaks everything up like a sponge. He just still wants to learn, he’ll get better and better as he goes on. I mean he’s still only young! Realistically a novice still. He’s a funny lad and good to be around. I’ve got a lot of time for him. He’s raised the bar now – beating Klitschko at Wembley is just massive, and it’s something that we’ve all got to aspire to.

“Winning the World Title on his undercard was great. It took me four and a half years going from amateur into the pro game and winning a World Title. Doing it on a massive show headlined by AJ was special. We are Eddie Hearn’s only two World Champions who he’s had from their debuts.

“I was very pleased with my performance that night. I had to do what I had to do. I stayed focused on my own game plan, even after he failed to make the weight. I got in there and done the business. I out boxed him for 12 rounds. I made it as easy as possible.”

Yafai’s World title defence is part of a huge night of action in Birmingham, where Sam Eggington challenges Cerefino Rodriguez for the European Welterweight title.

Yafai’s brother Gamal defends his WBC International Super-Bantamweight championship against fellow Birmingham man Sean Davis, Ryan Kelly and Adam Harper meet for the Midlands Area Middleweight Title.
Frankie Gavin is back in action in his first fight with trainer Jon Pegg, and there’s action for Lennox Clarke, unbeaten Olympian Josh Kelly, Kieron Conway, Aaron Lovell, Jordan Clayton, Charlie Williams and Cori Gibbs.

Gervonta Davis and Gary Russell Jr. Anchor Four-Fight, Split Site Boxing Event May 20th on Showtime

America’s youngest world champion, Gervonta Davis, will make his first world title defense in the opening bout and featherweight world champion Gary Russell Jr. will make his mandatory world title defense in the main event of a split-site, four-fight SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING event on Saturday, May 20, live on SHOWTIME at 6 p.m. ET/3 p.m. PT*.

Davis will travel to Britain to defend his IBF Junior Lightweight World Championship against undefeated No. 1-ranked contender and local favorite Liam Walsh from Copper Box Arena in London. Russell will make a long-awaited homecoming—his first professional fight in the region—and his second WBC Featherweight World Championship defense against mandatory challenger Oscar Escandon live from MGM National Harbor just outside of Washington, D.C.

*Editors’ Note: In order to present all four bouts on one program, the Davis vs. Walsh bout may air on a delay basis of up to 30 minutes.

SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING host Brian Custer will anchor the four-fight telecast from Maryland with coverage of Davis vs. Walsh provided by BT Sport. Veteran sportscaster Mauro Ranallo will handle play-by-play at MGM National Harbor with Hall of Famer Al Bernstein and former two-division champion Paulie Malignaggi serving as analysts. Emmy award winning sports reporter Jim Gray and 2017 Hall of Fame inductee Steve Farhood will also serve from ringside. Secondary Audio Programming will be offered in Spanish by Alejandro Luna and former world champ Raúl Marquez.

From London, John Rawling will handle play-by-play for Davis vs. Walsh with former world champion Richie Woodhall providing the color commentary at Copper Box Arena.

“May 20 will be a big night of boxing and it kicks off a run of four consecutive weeks of world class fights on SHOWTIME,” said Stephen Espinoza, Executive Vice President and General Manager, SHOWTIME Sports®. “We have consistently delivered the biggest and most important boxing events from around the globe to SHOWTIME subscribers. This unique presentation—four fights, two world championships and two title eliminators, from different continents, all on one show—is yet another example of our unrivaled commitment to the sport.”

The 22-year-old Davis (17-0, 16 KOs) is the youngest reigning world champion from the United States and the second youngest in the world. The Baltimore native and Floyd Mayweather protégé will travel to hostile territory in his first title defense against Walsh (21-0, 14 KOs) in a matchup of undefeated southpaws.

Russell Jr. (27-1, 16 KOs) will look to make a statement in the loaded featherweight division against mandatory challenger Ecandon (25-2, 17 KOs), who owns a stunning knockout of former world champion Jesus Cuellar. Russell vs. Escandon is the sixth featherweight title bout on SHOWTIME since February 2016.
Two world title eliminators will round out the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING quadrupleheader. Top super middleweight contenders Andre Dirrell (25-2, 16 KOs) and José Uzcátegui (26-1, 22 KOs) will face off in an IBF Super Middleweight Eliminator to determine the mandatory challenger for champion James DeGale.
Undefeated Rances Barthelemy (25-0, 13 KOs) will meet Kiryl Relikh (21-1, 19 KOs) in a WBA Super Lightweight Eliminator for unified champ Julius Indongo. Barthelemy, who won titles at 130 and 135, will earn an opportunity to become Cuba’s first three-division champion with a win over the hard-hitting Relikh.

Beltran-Maicelo Title Eliminator Added to Crawford vs. Diaz

Two-time world title challenger RAY “Sugar” BELTRAN and heavy-fisted JONATHAN “The Last Inca” MAICELO will go mano a mano in a high-stakes battle of world-rated lightweight contenders. Sanctioned by the International Boxing Federation (IBF) as a world lightweight title elimination bout, the winner of the 12-round rumble will also lay claim to the vacant World Boxing Association (WBA) International and the NABF and NABO lightweight titles, currently held by Beltran. Beltran vs. Maicelo will be the co-main event to the TERENCE “Bud” CRAWFORD – FÉLIX DÍAZ World Junior Welterweight Championship, Saturday, May 20, at the Mecca of Boxing, Madison Square Garden. Both fights will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing, beginning at 10:15 p.m. ET/PT. The world championship event will also feature the Pride of Newark and 2016 U.S. Olympic silver medalist SHAKUR STEVENSON on the non-televised undercard.
Beltran and Maicelo, who hail from Mexico and Peru, respectively, have a combined record of 57-9-1 (32 KOs), — a winning percentage of 85% with over half their victories coming by way of knockout. Both boast unbeaten streaks dating back to 2015..

“We are ready for this fight. It is a very important fight for the whole team, because it will be the fight that will take us to the opportunity of battling for a world title,” said Beltran. “We are focused on winning. We are coming to fight and give a great show to all the fans. I don’t just want to win. I want to look good and win convincingly. Little by little I am making my dreams come true. I have battled a lot in my career. We have fulfilled many of our goals, like now that we are going to fight at Madison Square Garden. Being able to fight in a historical place, where all the greats have fought, is a dream come true.”

“This is a very important fight for my career. This fight means everything to me because I will be able to display my skills in front of a big audience and on a big stage like Madison Square Garden,” said Maicelo. “Right now I’m at my best and on May 20 everyone will see the best of me. I’m working very hard in the gym because everyone knows that Beltran is a tough fighter, but I’m focused on winning because this is a world title elimination bout that will take me straight to the opportunity of fighting for a world title.”

Beltran (32-7-1, 20 KOs), a native of Ahome, Mexico who resides in Phoenix, AZ., enters this fight having won his last three fights by knockout. A two-time lightweight world title challenger and a former sparring partner of eight-division world champion Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao, Beltran still trains at Freddie Roach’s Wild Card Boxing Club in Hollywood, Calif. In his last fight, in the co-main event to the Crawford John Molina Jr. world title fight on December 10, Crawford scored a sensational one-punch seventh-round knockout of once-beaten Mason Menard in an NABF-NABO lightweight title fight. Beltran is currently world-rated No. 2 by the World Boxing Organization (WBO), No. 3 by the IBF and No. 4 by the World Boxing Council (WBC).

Maicelo (25-2, 12 KOs), a native of Callao, Peru who fights out of North Bergen, New Jersey, is riding a two-year four-bout winning streak. His most impressive victory was his in his last fight, against Jose Felix, Jr. on February 17. Felix, who entered the fight with a 35-1-1 record and world-rated No. 3 by the WBO, was knocked down five times by Maicelo. Maicelo’s upset unanimous decision victory over Felix has propelled him to No. 7 in the IBF.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Ward, Kovalev, Pacquiao, Canelo, Chavez, Gamboa, Burns, and more….


Boxing Insider Notebook: Ward, Kovalev, Pacquiao, Canelo, Chavez, Gamboa, Burns, and more….
Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of April 4th to April 11th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

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Andre Ward vs. Sergey Kovalev Press Conference Quotes

Andre Ward (31-0) and Sergey KOvalev (30-1-1) recently held a press conference to announce their upcoming rematch on Saturday, June 17th at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada. The bout will be produced and distributed live on HBO Pay Per View.

Below are some select quotes from their press conference:

Andre “S.O.G.” Ward – Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

“I want to thank everybody for coming out today – the media, obviously, HBO, Peter Nelson and their whole team, these guys work tirelessly to get these kinds of things done. I appreciate my team, James Prince, Josh Dubin, Roc Nation and everyone at Roc Nation, JAY Z, Juan and Desiree Perez, Michael Yormark. It’s important to have a good team. We talk a lot about fighting, we talk all about matchups, but when we talk about support, it’s frowned upon. When we see fighters 10, 15, 20 years from now shuffling in a room, nothing to show what they fought for, that’s okay. By the grace of God and by way of my team, that’s not going to happen to me.

“Unfortunately, there’s perception and there’s reality. Perception is every one thing that’s written, every opinion but as you grow and learn this business, it’s not about perception. Nobody can point to a fight where I turned. Not one point. That’s not in my track record. So, I don’t mind the perception. I don’t care about Instagram. This is chess, not checkers. You can make all the rules you want to make, but it’s about the checkmate. That’s when the game is over.

“My team is working on life after boxing. Educating me on the ins and outs. A lot of people talk about money, but they don’t talk about the upside. They’re not talking about the personal sponsorships for the fight, and your obligations for the sponsorship. They’re not talking about the television rights and foreign rights, the merchandise. ‘Be tough, keep focus, destroy the fight’. I’m not with that man. I want the whole thing, I want to understand everything. The fight is not the end.

“They have to understand, there’s nothing scary about this man. You realize we just fought 12 rounds four months ago? Everyone wants to highlight the knockdown, that’s probably one of the most beautiful moments of my career. And did you guys see the other 10 rounds? Nobody’s talking about that. But that’s what makes us who we are. It’s hard concrete down there, we don’t want to fall. We’ve got another drive, we’ve got another gear we’ve got to tap into when we hit adversity and hit the cannons. You guys saw that, in the biggest moment of my career.

“I didn’t get to where I’m at because there’s something unique about me. I didn’t get to this point by happenstance. Some may not like it, but you got to respect it. You don’t have to, but we’ve earned the position that we have. We don’t mind being understated. The fight is academic. When my team green-lighted it, I said go ahead and announce it. The reality is, you’ve got to see me on June 17. That’s the reality of the situation. I love to talk, it’s all good. We knocked heads for 12 rounds, that’s the reality of the situation. He felt me, he knows. On June 17, that’s how we’re going to do. We’re going to get started a little early. Whether you’re with me, or whether you’re against me, tune in. Appreciate everybody’s time. Don’t miss this fight, June 17. You got what you asked for.”

Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev – Former Unified Light Heavyweight World Champion

“Hello everyone. I am thankful the fight will take place on June 17. Well, will take place on paper for now. I’m appreciative of my team and Team Ward that this fight will actually happen. I want to apologize to my fans for my performance the last time but we’re going to get this squared either way. We’re going to see who is the best fighter. I’m very excited for June 17. The only thing I hope is that a week or two before the fight, Andre Ward does not get injured and he has enough balls to come out and fight me on June 17.”

Pacman Ready to Go Down Under to Turn Horn’s World Upside Down!

Add Suncorp Stadium in Brisbane, Australia to the list of venues on foreign soil that will play host to a MANNY “Pacman” PACQUIAO fight. Boxing’s only eight-division world champion and the reigning Fighter of the Decade, Pacquiao has accepted the challenge of undefeated No. 2 world-rated contender JEFF “The Hornet” HORN to defend his World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight title, Saturday, July 1 (Sunday, July 2, in Australia). Promoted by Top Rank® and Duco Events, “The Battle of Brisbane” is expected to attract 55,000 fans and a record pay-per-view audience in Australia. It will also be seen live in the U.S. Look for details on the U.S. telecast in the following weeks.

“Manny has been a pioneer, bringing world title fights to Cowboys Stadium, The Venetian Macao’s Cotai Arena and now Suncorp Stadium. We’re boxing’s version of Lewis & Clark, discovering new markets,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. ” Manny knows who will be the crowd favorite on July 1, but he can’t wait to give Australia and the world a great performance. It’s going to be unbelievable event.”

Pacquiao (59-6-2, 38 KOs), from General Santos City, Philippines, is in his third reign as WBO welterweight champion. He regained the title on November 5, winning a dominant unanimous decision victory over defending champion Jessie Vargas.

Horn (16-0-1, 11 KOs), from Bisbane, Queensland, Australia, enters this fight having won his last three fights — all in 2016 — against Ali Funeka, Rico Mueller and Randall Bailey inside the distance. They had a combined record of 105-14-4 when he fought them. Horn is world-rated No. 2 by the WBO and the International Boxing Federation (IBF).

Robin Krasniqi vs. Arthur Abraham Super Middleweight Title Eliminator
The World Boxing Organization (WBO) Super Middleweight title eliminator, featuring two-time world title challenger Robin Krasniqi taking on the three-time, two-division world champion “King” Artur Abraham, will be available to watch April 22 on pay per view in North America, starting at 2 p.m. ET/ 11 a.m. a.m. PT, live from Congress Center in Ekfurt, Germany. The two fighters have a combined record or 91-9 with 47 knockouts.

“Krasniqi vs. Abraham”, promoted by SES Promotions, is a presentation of Integrated Sports Media and FITE.
Integrated Sports Media will distribute “Krasniqi vs. Abraham” live in North America, starting at 2 p.m. ET / 11 a.m. PT, on cable, satellite and internet pay-per-view via iN Demand, Vubiquity, and DISH in the United States, as well as Rogers, Shaw and Sask Tel in Canada, also on the FITE app and website, for a suggested retail price of only $24.95.

Outside of North America, “Krasniqi vs. Abraham” is being licensed by leading boxing television rights distribution firm, Protocol Sports Marketing Ltd.

Born in Kosovo, the 29-year-old Krasniqi (46-4, 17 KOs) is a former European and WBO International Light Heavyweight Champion, who resides in Munich, Germany and packs a thunderous punch. Three fights ago, he moved down in weight from Light Heavyweight to Super Middleweight, winning all three bouts at the new weight class and looking highly impressive.

In 2013, Krasniqi lost his first world title shot by way of a 12-round unanimous decision to defending WBO Light Heavyweight World Champion Nathan Cleverly (25-0), in London, by way of a hard-fought 12-round decision.
Following his first career defeat, Krasniqi went on to capture the WBO International Light Heavyweight Title with a seventh-round knockout of previously undefeated Emmanuel Danso (20-0), and has since defended that belt. Krasniqi won the vacant World Boxing Association (WBA) Continental Light Heavyweight Title with a 12-round unanimous decision over Oleksandr Cherviak (14-3-1).

In 2014, Krasniqi successfully defended those two championships, taking a 12-round unanimous decision from Dariusz Sek (21-1-1), which set up his second world title shot, March 21, 2015 in Germany, against long-time defending WBA Light Heavyweight World Champion Juergan Braehmer (45-2) in a massive all-German world title showdown. Krasniqi was unable to answer the bell for the 10th round but learned that he should drop a weight class. Since moving down to Super Middleweight, Krasniqi has looked impressive but Abraham will surely be the biggest test of his career.

Rated No. 2 by the WBO, Abraham (45-5, 30 KOs) has positioned himself for another world title shot as the winner of his Apr. 22nd eliminator with Krasniqi will become the mandatory challenger for reigning WBO Super Middleweight World Champion Gilberto Ramirez, of Mexico. Abraham lost his WBO crown by way a 12-round unanimous decision to Ramirez in Las Vegas in 2016 but must win against Krasniqi to have an opportunity at regaining his title.

The 37-year-old Abraham, a native of Armenia who lives in Berlin, Germany, is a two-time WBO (World Boxing Organization) Super Middleweight Champion, as well as the former International Boxing Federation (IBF) Middleweight World Champion. The knockout artist has a remarkable 18-4 (9 KOs) record in world championship bouts and is 7-4 (4 KOs) against former or current world champions. Noted victims during his 16-½ year professional career reads like a Who’s Who of Boxing in the 160 and 168-pound divisions, including world champions Raul Marquez, Hector Javier Velazco, Jermain Taylor, Robert Stieglitz thrice, and Giovanni De Carolis. Abraham has also defeated world-class opponents such as Martin Murray, Paul Smith twice, Lajuan Simon, Edison Miranda twice. Khoren Gevor, Sebastian Demers, Kofi Jantuah, Kingsley Ikeke and Howard Eastman.

Four of Abraham’s five career losses have been to world champions Carl Froch, Andre Ward, Robert Stieglitz and Gilberto Ramirez. Stieglitz is the only opponent to stop Abraham, who has won nine of his last 10 fights, the most recent an eighth-round technical knockout of Tim Robin Lihaug (15-1) this past July in Germany for the vacant WBO International Super Middleweight Title.

Featherweight World Champion Gary Russell Jr. Defends His Belt Against Oscar Escandon on May 20th

WBC Featherweight World Champion Gary Russell Jr. will make the second defense of his title when he faces top challenger Oscar Escandon Saturday, May 20 in themain event of SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING from the recently opened MGM National Harbor in Maryland live on SHOWTIME.

The Maryland-native Russell Jr. (27-1, 16 KOs) and the WBC Interim Featherweight Champion Escandon (25-2, 17 KOs) will battle in one of boxing’s most talented divisions that continues to deliver exciting action fight after fight. A lineup of exciting co-featured attractions will be announced next week.

“I’m a gladiator getting ready for a tough battle,” said Russell Jr. “This is going to be a huge night for my family and I’m glad that the time is here. This will be the first time as pros that I get to fight on the same card as both of my little brothers, (unbeaten bantamweight) Gary Antonio and (2016 U.S. Olympian) Gary Antuanne, plus my brother Gary Allan will work all of our corners. We’re excited to get in the ring and show the fans what we’re capable of doing in the ring.”

“I’ve had to wait for this opportunity to face Gary Russell Jr. and I’m going to take full advantage of it,” said Escandon. “It’s going to be a great fight and I know the fans are going to get their money’s worth. I feel 100 percent healthy and now that the fight is here I am ready to knock him out.”

Tickets for the live event promoted by TGB Promotions are priced at $200, $150, $100 and $50, and are now on sale. To purchase tickets go to http://mgmnationalharbor.com/. The main event is co-promoted by Sampson Boxing. This bout was originally scheduled to take place on March 11 but was rescheduled after Escandon suffered a back injury in training camp. Fans who bought tickets for the March 11 show will have their tickets honored on May 20.

“This is going to be a great night of boxing,” said Tom Brown, President of TGB Promotions. “The featherweight division is very hot right now with the recent wins by Leo Santa Cruz and Abner Mares. There is something very special going on in the division and this will be another memorable fight. Escandon is a tough warrior who has proven time and again that he doesn’t care about going on the road or where he fights. There are great boxing fans in the Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia region and they are in-store for an exciting night on May 20.”

A speedy and supremely talented boxer, Russell Jr., was impressive in his fourth-round stoppage of the battle-tested Jhonny Gonzalez that earned him the title in March 2015. The 2008 U.S. Olympian had scored important victories over Vyacheslav Gusev, Juan Ruiz and Miguel Tamayo before losing a majority decision to Vasyl Lomachenko for the WBO 126-pound title in June 2014. The southpaw, of Capitol Heights, Md., most recently scored a dominant second-round TKO victory over Patrick Hyland in his first title defense in April 2016.

Fighting out of Ibague, Colombia, Escandon turned pro in 2008 and was undefeated in his first 22 professional bouts. Escandon won an interim world title at super bantamweight in 2014 when he defeated Tyson Cave in his U.S. debut. He earned his shot at Russell Jr. last March when he survived an early knockdown to score a knockout victory over Robinson Castellanos in the seventh round of their showdown in Washington, D.C.

Golden Boy Promotions Throw Cinco De Mayo Triple Header on Canelo vs. Chavez Weekend

On Friday, May 5, one day before the mega-fight between Canelo Alvarez vs. Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. goes down in Las Vegas, Golden Boy Promotions will throw a Cinco de Mayo fiesta at the MGM Grand Garden Arena. Fans will get a full afternoon and evening of activity starting with the Official Canelo vs. Chavez, Jr.Weigh In, an action-packed night of Golden Boy Boxing onESPN fights headlined by Former Three-Division World Champion Yuriorkis Gamboa taking on the longtime contender Robinson Castellanos, surprise fighter appearances, DJs, sponsor giveaways, entertainment and much, much more!

First, the MGM Grand Garden Arena doors will open at 1:00 p.m. PST for the official Canelo vs. Chavez, Jr. and full undercard Weigh-in with fighters hitting the scales at 2:00 p.m. PST/5:00 p.m. EST, main pay-per-view-view undercard to weigh in beginning at 2:30 p.m. PST/5:30 p.m. EST. Soon after the weigh-in, the Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN fights will begin, leading into a special televised tripleheader of fan-friendly action live on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes.
As a special treat to the fans, Golden Boy Promotions will be giving away exclusive VIP seating and entrance to the Canelo vs. Chavez, Jr. Weigh-in with purchase of a ticket to Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN: Gamboa vs. Castellanos.
“On the eve of the Mexico vs. Mexico superfight that is Canelo vs. Chavez, Jr., it was only fitting we throw the ultimate fan fiesta on Cinco de Mayo in Las Vegas,” said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions. “There is no better way to enjoy this special holiday than to come out and watch some top quality, action-packed fights, listen to the sounds of the mariachi bands and wave your Mexican flags.”

Cuban standout and Olympic gold medalist Yuriorkis “El Ciclon de Guantánamo” Gamboa (26-1, 17 KOs) of Miami, FL will be making a rapid return to the ring to face rugged Celaya, Mexico fighter Robinson “Robin Hood” Castellanos (21-11, 13 KOs) in a main event lightweight fight scheduled for 10 rounds transmitted on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes beginning at 5:00 p.m. PST/8:00 p.m. EST.

In the co-main event, Abraham “El Chamaco” Lopez (22-0-1, 15 KOs) of La Puente, CA will put his WBA-NABA Featherweight title and undefeated record on the line, as he squares off in a 10 round bout against dangerous fighter Jesus Rojas (24-1-2, 17 KOs) hailing from Caguas, Puerto Rico.

Opening up Golden Boy Boxing on ESPN televised fights, someone’s “0” must go as Sao Paulo, Brazil’s own Yamaguchi Falcão (12-0, 6 KOs) faces his toughest challenge yet in the sturdy Morgan “Big Chief” Fitch (18-0-1, 8 KOs) of Pittsburgh, PA in a 10 round middleweight match.

Ricky Burns to Meet Julius Indongo on Saturday April 15th

Ricky Burns and Julius Indongo will clash in a bout that will unify the WBA and IBF 140-pound world titles. The match-up takes place on Saturday, April 15th and will be featured live and exclusively on AWE, A Wealth of Entertainment and www.klowdtv.com in the United States.

Burns will have the home fan advantage. The bout originates from the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland. The undercard fights begin at 2:30 PM EST / 11:20 AM PT.

“We’re thrilled to bring this very exciting world unification fight to our fans,” stated Robert Herring, CEO of AWE.
Burns of Coatsbridge, Scotland has been a world champion in three weight-classes, and has been competing in world title bouts for seven years.

The 33 year-old has a record of 41-5-1 with 14 knockouts. He has taken part in 12 world title bouts with a record of 10-1-1 in those contests.

Burns has wins over Colin Bain (8-0), Graham Earl (22-0), Haider Ali (4-1), Osumanu Akaba (21-4-1), Yakuba Amidu (16-1-1), Michael Gomes (38-9) and Kevin O’Hara (16-4).

On September 4, 2010, Burns won the WBO Super Featherweight title with a 12 round unanimous decision over Michael Katsidis (28-4). He won the full title with a 12-round unanimous decision over Paulus Moses (28-1). Burns defended that title 3 times with wins over Kevin Mitchell (33-1) & Jose Gonzalez (22-0) and a draw with Raymundo Beltran (28-6), before dropping his title to Terence Crawford.

Burns became a 3-division champion with an 8th round stoppage over Michele Di Rocco on May 28, 2016. He has made one defense, which came on October 7th with a unanimous decision over Kiryl Relikh.

“When Julius Indongo knocked out Eduard Troyanovsky he was immediately an opponent I was interested in,” says Burns. “Indongo can clearly punch and that’s an impressive way to win a World title, especially in Russia. It was some shot he hit Troyanovsky with.

“It’s a huge fight in the division and the kind of fights I need to be involved in at this stage of my career. There were other names talked about but I wanted the toughest, most dangerous fight out there. Indongo with his two belts was that man.

“He is a big tall, rangy, southpaw but bring it on – I have no fear of anyone and it is only the massive fights for me now.

“Fighting in Glasgow is special for me, the crowd at the SSE Hydro has been electric the last two occasions and I expect it to be no different this time round.”

Indongo of Windhoek, Namibia has a perfect mark of 20-0 with 11 knockouts.

The 34 year-old is an eight-year professional, who was the WBO African Super Lightweight champion as he had wins over Zolani Marali (4-5), Ibrahim Class (12-1) and Ishmael Kuchocha (12-3).

On December 3, 2016, Indongo scored one of the biggest upsets of the year, when he scored a stunning and explosive 40 second knockout over classy and undefeated IBF Champion Eduard Troyanovsky (25-0) in the former champion’s backyard of Moscow, Russia.

Indongo added: “It’s an absolute honor for me to fight Ricky, who I regard as an accomplished champion. I respect what he has achieved so far but I’m going to Scotland to rob him of his belt. I know it won’t be easy but I’m comforted by the fact that I have a good team and passionate Namibian fans, and I have every intention of making them smile and unifying the division on April 15.”

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Two Philly Boxing Events This Weekend Friday & Saturday!


Two Philly Boxing Events This Weekend Friday & Saturday!
By: Ken Hissner

There have only been 3 events in Pennsylvania this year and 2 of them were in Philly and sub-par shows. This weekend the two top promoters bring shows in Peltz Boxing and Kings Promotions.

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On Friday at the 2300 Arena in South Philly J Russell Peltz brings in what he does best in Philly vs Philly on top! Underneath he will have 10 more fights which is quite unusual for Peltz.

In the main event lightweight Anthony “Bad Boy” Burgin, 10-2 (2), has spent the last 8 weeks in Puerto Rico under trainer Raul “Chino” Rivas. “The new things I learned and did there helped bring my talent to another level physically and mentally. The feeling of fighting the main event in Philly is unbelievable. I have been sparring with Michael Perez and a few other guys from PR,” said Burgin.

His trainer Raul “Chino” Rivas had this to say “Anthony looks amazing like he’s fighting for a world title.”

In the opposite corner that night will be another Philly fighter in Avery Sparrow, 5-1 (3). “Camp has been the best ever. I feel the best I have ever felt in my whole career. We worked hard and smart,” said Sparrow. His trainer Greg Jackson had this to say, “Everyone knows what it is. Everyone is coming to see Anthony Burgin get his head chopped off. This is an execution!”

The semi-final will pit super welterweight Fred Jenkins, Jr., 10-3 (1), against returning visitor Roque Zapata, 2-1-3 (0), who in his last fight defeated Philly’s Isaiah Wise. “I saw him fight Isaiah Wise and it was a good fight. One thing I noticed he threw a lot of punches and Wise was still fighting,” said Jenkins, Jr. His father train had this to say “Fred looks superb. Whatever Zapata brings to the table Fred is ready to match it,” said Jenkins, Sr.

“I am not worried about coming to his backyard or being the underdog. In my MMA days and in boxing I’ve been fighting in the other guy’s back yard a lot and I love it,” said Zapata. His trainer Eric Zamora had this to say “he’s very focused and hungry for this fight. He’s put in enough hard work to have his hand raised on March 10th!”

On the undercard will feature two of the best Puerto Ricans from the area in separate bouts in Victor Padilla, 2-0 (2), of Berlin, NJ, and Joseph “Blessed Hands” Adorno, 2-0 (2), from Allentown, PA. Isaiah Wise, 3-1 will be back. Also returning from out of CT will be heavyweight Cassius Chaney, 8-0. Philly’s Marcel Rivers, 1-0 and Chris “Sandman” Thomas, 4-0, from Blackwood, NJ.

Completing the 10 undercard fights will be debuting Puerto Rican Crystian Peguero, of Philly and Basyzbek Baratov, 1-1-1, of KYR, and now Philly, Ernesto Almodovar debuting from Philly.

First fight will be at 7:30. Besides Peltz, BAM and Joe Hand Promotions along with Park Casino and Coors Light will handle the promotion.

On Saturday night Kings Promotion will have one of Philly’s knockout artists on top in Tyrone Brunson, 23-6-2 (22), facing Brandon Quarles, 18-3-1 (9), of Alexandria, VA. Philly’s David Gonzales, 8-1-2 (2), Tyrone Crawley, Jr., 6-0 (0), with Daquan Johnson, 2-0 (2), of Cherry Hill, NJ, will be taking on Philly’s Vincent Floyd, 1-2 (0). Carlos Rosario, 6-1 (3), of Pennsauken, NJ, Upper Darby’s Brandon Robinson, 1-1 (1), and debuting Philly boxer Terry Crowder as well as Philly’s Sam Orapeza will feature 8 fights.

The event will be at the SugarHouse Casino in Philly.

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Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Chavez, Russell, Lemieux, Thurman, Lubin, and more..


Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Chavez, Russell, Lemieux, Thurman, Lubin, and more..
Compiled By: William Holmes

The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of February 28th to March 7th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.

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Photo Credit: Amanda Westcott/Showtime

Canelo vs. Chavez Tickets are Sold Out!

Living up to its billing as one of the biggest fights of 2017, the Cinco de Mayo weekend showdown set for Saturday, May 6 between two-division world champion Canelo Alvarez (48-1-1, 34KOs) and former WBC middleweight world champion Julio Cesar Chavez, Jr. (50-2-1, 32 KOs) has sold out T-Mobile Arena in Las Vegas.

The number of tickets sold, more than 20,000, is among the largest indoor sell-outs in the rich history of Las Vegas prizefights.

“Big fights sell, and as anyone can see from the fact that we sold out Las Vegas’ biggest boxing venue less than 10 days after tickets became available, Canelo-Chavez, Jr. is a huge fight,” said Golden Boy Promotions CEO and Chairman Oscar De La Hoya. “Now that T-Mobile Arena is full, we will soon announce venues for showing the fight on closed circuit for fans still planning to come to celebrate in Las Vegas, and fans can of course see the fight in the comfort of their own homes on HBO Pay-Per-View.”

Earlier this week, Golden Boy Promotions announced that Argentinian slugger Lucas “La Maquina” Matthysse (37-4, 34 KOs) will appear on the HBO Pay-Per-View in his first fight in more than a year and a half against Emmanuel “Tranzformer” Taylor (20-4, 14 KOs). The remainder of the Pay-Per-View slate and undercard will be announced shortly.

Canelo vs. Chávez, Jr. is a 12-round fight presented by Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Tecate, BORN BOLD, Adriana’s Insurance and Interjet. Matthysse vs. Taylor is a 10-round fight presented by Golden Boy promotions in association with Arano Boxing and Star Boxing. The event will take place on Saturday, May 6 at T-Mobile Arena and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

Gary Russell, Jr.-Oscar Escandon Featherweight Title Match Postponed After Escandon Suffers Injury in Training

The featherweight championship match between Gary Russell Jr. and Oscar Escandon, scheduled for Saturday, March 11 at the MGM National Harbor in Maryland, has been postponed after Escandon was injured in training, according to Escandon’s promoter Sampson Lewkowicz.

“Oscar suffered an injury to his back in training and he’ll be ready to go in April,” Lewkowicz said. “He’s very sorry for the delay in the fight, but these things happen in boxing. He’s really looking forward to facing Gary Russell, Jr., but he wants to be completely healthy when they do meet.”

Escandon, a 32-year-old Colombian with a record of 25-2 with 17 KOs, is the mandatory challenger for Russell’s featherweight championship. Jermell Charlo defending his 154-pound title against Charles Hatley will be the co-feature on the rescheduled card.

“It’s definitely irritating,” Russell said. “But injuries happen especially when you have somebody pushing their body to the limit for a fight that is potentially life changing. It’s disappointing. It might not work out for him because I have a little more time to get ready.”

“We’re working with the venue and the network to find the earliest date that we can reschedule the show,” said Tom Brown of TGB Promotions. “I feel terrible for the fighters who have been training so hard and now have to wait. Gary is really disappointed, but he understands that injuries are all a part of the sport. But Gary will be ready to go on the rescheduled date.”

David Lemieux Media Workout Quotes

Former IBF Middleweight World Champion David Lemieux (36-3, 32 KOs) hosted a media workout at Sherbatov MMA in Laval, Quebec, the same week he departs for Verona, NY for his upcoming showdown with Curtis “The Cerebral Assassin” Stevens (29-5, 21 KOs). The middleweight bout takes place Saturday, March 11 at Turning Stone Resort Casino televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 11:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Lemieux was joined his trainer Marc Ramsay at today’s media workout and spoke onsite about his matchup with Stevens and his training leading up to the mega event for the middleweight titles. Below is what Lemieux and his team had to say at today’s workout:

DAVID LEMIEUX, Former IBF Middleweight World Champion:

”The last time that my opponent spoke so much and I so disliked him, I believe it was Delray Raines. I broke three of his ribs and his nose. It didn’t end up very well for him.

”I couldn’t be more prepared for a fight. I have one objective in mind: I want to take his head off. I am so motivated to put on a great performance on Saturday night. Stevens put a lot of oil in the fire with his disrespectful comments and he will pay for it.

”I had an exceptional camp and we have prepared for this fight very seriously. We are ready for the best Stevens there is, going 12 rounds if needed. I guarantee you that it will be a rough night for him. ”

MARC RAMSAY, Trainer to David Lemieux:

”It is important to go there and deliver a spectacular performance. This is a good challenge. In this fight, we have to execute well what we have prepared to do for the last eight weeks. ”

Tickets for this highly anticipated matchup are still available and priced at $30, $45, $55 and $75 for ringside seats plus applicable fees and are available at the Turning Stone Resort Box Office by calling 315-361-7469 or online at Ticketmaster(www.ticketmaster.com).

Lemieux vs. Stevens is a 12-round middleweight bout for the WBO Intercontinental, WBC Continental Americas and IBF North American Middleweight titles, presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Eye of the Tiger Management and Main Events, and sponsored by “Tecate, BORN BOLD.” The HBO Boxing After Dark® telecast begins at 11:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Quotes from Keith Thurman and Erickson Lubin After their Victories on Saturday

Keith Thurman is the unified welterweight world champion.

Thurman (28-0, 22 KOs) unified boxing’s glamour division with a split-decision victory over Danny Garcia (33-1, 19 KOs) on Saturday, defending his WBA belt and picking up Garcia’s WBC crown on boxing’s biggest stage in primetime on CBS from Barclays Center, the home of BROOKLYN BOXING™.

The event, which was produced by SHOWTIME Sports® for the CBS Television Network, marked the highest-attended boxing event in Barclays Center history with 16,533 fans witnessing just the 10th unification in division history.

The close affair, which was only the third time undefeated fighters unified the 147-pound division, was scored 116-112 Thurman, 115-113 Thurman and 115-113 Garcia.

The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING on CBS main event, which was presented by Premier Boxing Champions, was a tale of effective aggression and ring generalship. Thurman came out swinging and was the busier and more accurate fighter in nine of the 12 rounds. “One Time” Thurman was more tactical in the second half of the fight, utilizing lateral movement and working off his jab. Garcia picked up the pace and was more active in the final rounds, but it was too little too late for the previously undefeated Philadelphia native.

“I thought I out-boxed him.” said Thurman, who likely earned a spot on boxing’s mythical pound-for-pound list with the impressive victory. “I thought it was a clear victory, but Danny came to fight. I knew when it was split and I had that wide spread, I knew it had to go to me.

“I was not giving the fight away. I felt like we had a nice lead, we could cool down. I felt like we were controlling the three-minute intervals every round. My defense was effective – he wasn’t landing.”

A former unified champion at 140-pound, Garcia was aiming to be the first fighter in history to unify titles at 140 and 147 pounds.

“I came up short tonight,” said Garcia, who entered the bout with a 7-0 record in world title bouts. “I thought I was the aggressor. I thought I pushed the pace. But it didn’t go my way.

“I thought I won and I was pushing the fight. But it is what it is. I’ll come back strong like a true champion. I would love a rematch to get these titles.”

SHOWTIME Sports analyst and unofficial scorer Steve Farhood scored the fight 116-112 for Thurman.

Undefeated super welterweight Erickson Lubin (18-0, 13 KOs) knocked out Jorge Cota (23-2, 20 KOs) in a WBC 154-pound title eliminator, dropping the previously once-beaten Cota with a flush overhand left at 1:25 (TKO) of the fourth round.

Lubin now becomes the No. 2 challenger to WBC Welterweight World Championship Jermell Charlo, who is due a mandatory bout against No. 1 contender Charles Hatley.

The Orlando-native Lubin landed 47 percent of his power shots across four rounds of shutout boxing.

“I baited him with the jab. I knew he was going to come with the big shots early,” Lubin said to reporter Jim Gray. “I put a few tricks on him, I landed that overhand and it was night-night. I put my hands down to bait him in, I did a squat and then it was night-night. I was ready to follow-up with a right but he was already out.”

At just 21-years-old, Lubin now has an opportunity to become the youngest world champion in boxing today.

“That would mean a lot to me; that would mean a lot to Orlando, Florida,” Lubin said. “This is my second time knocking someone out in front of Ray Leonard. He’s one of my favorite fighters of all time. It’s an honor to do this on CBS.”

Reynoso to Face Valenzuela for WBC Silver Latino Super Bantamweight Championship on April 1st

On Saturday, April 1, at the Arena Jalisco in Guadalajara, México, promoters Eddie Reynoso of Clase y Talento, and Sampson Lewkowicz of Sampson Boxing will team up to present a night of world-class boxing, televised live on TyC Sports of Argentina.

As part of TyC’s ongoing 25th anniversary celebration of boxing shows, this exciting event will feature a 10-round battle for the WBC Silver Latino Super Bantamweight Championship between Buenos Aires, Argentina’s Roman Ruben Reynoso (19-1-2, 8 KOs) and Sonora, Mexico’s Christian “Molacho” Valenzuela (13-0-1, 8 KOs).

Reynoso has left his native Argentina just twice in his career, but on one of those occasions, fought to a split draw with well-regarded prospect Adam Lopez on ShoBox: The New Generation in July 2016. Like Reynoso, the undefeated Valenzuela has never left his home country, but has stayed busy with 14 fights in his three-year career.

In the chief supporting bout, Argentinean 2016 Summer Olympian Alberto Palmetta will go for his third consecutive victory as a professional against Mexico City’s Luis Montelongo (4-1).

26-year-old Palmetta, a junior middleweight, was one of the most heavily decorated amateurs in his country’s history, in addition to fighting in the 2016 Summer Olympics, he won numerous national and international distinctions including the bronze medal at the 2015 Pan American Games. He turned professional in November 2016.

In the televised opener, Novato, California via Uruguay’s Rudy Macedo (3-0, 3 KOs) will face also undefeated Leonel Rodriguez of Mexico in a four-round welterweight showdown. The power-punching Macedo was an amateur world champion, PAL champion and five-time Silver Gloves Champion. He is trained by Nonito Donaire Sr.

The event is sponsored by Tecate beer, “cervezas con carácter.”

“I am proud to be part of this event and to be helping TyC celebrate their anniversary,” said Sampson Lewkowicz. “They have done a tremendous service to boxing throughout their history. Thank you to my esteemed partner, Eddie Reynoso, as well. I’m looking forward to a great night of fights for the fans in Mexico, Argentina and around the world to enjoy.”

Five more exciting bouts are scheduled for the untelevised undercard.

March 10th Philly Fight Night Quotes

Kicking off the Philly Fight Night series Friday, March 10, at the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia are 11 fights. Topping the show will be an old-fashioned, all-Philly rumble when lightweights Anthony Burgin and Avery Sparrow collide after an eight-week training camp for each. In the six-round semifinal, Philadelphia favorite Fred Jenkins Jr. meets Roque Zapata, of Culpeper, VA. The first fight will begin at 7:30 p.m., and tickets will be available at the door.

The four fighters and their trainers had this to say about training camp:

Anthony Burgin:

“Camp was great; I feel strong and focused. I am in amazing shape for March 10. It was a benefit for me being in Puerto Rico, not only because of the weather but also for the new things I learned and did there to bring my talent to another level mentally and physically. I pushed my body to limits I didn’t even know my body could go to. Now I am just ready for March 10.

“The feeling of fighting a main event in Philly is unbelievable. I am greatly appreciative to have this big opportunity, especially in my own city where all my friends and family can watch. It’s only the beginning for what’s in store for Anthony ‘Bad Boy’ Burgin.

“Every fight for me is an important fight. There is no added pressure just because I am headlining the card, but never have I been so focused for a fight like this and it scares me as crazy as that sounds. I can’t wait to step in the ring. I have been sparring with Michael Perez and a few other guys from Puerto Rico, just working on the game plan.”

TRAINER Raul Rivas:

“Anthony looks amazing; like he’s fighting for a world title. His conditioning and mindset is very focused.

Avery Sparrow:

“Camp has been the best ever, I feel the best I have felt in my whole career. We worked hard and smart. I have grown from my last fights, inside the ring and out. I got stronger physically and mentally. I feel it’s going to be hard to beat a guy like me when I’m this focused. I’ve been beating guys just off my talent and now that I’m in peak shape you’re going to see the best Avery ‘A Plus’ Sparrow. The fans and boxing supporters are going see that I’m a world-class fighter and one of boxing’s next superstars. I’ve been under the radar from the beginning of my career.

“It feels great to be fighting in the main event and it’s been a long time coming. I have a lot of fans all around but there’s no place like home. We are ‘war ready’ and we’re gonna put on a great show for the hometown fans who have been supporting me from the start. I want to give them a knockout because that’s what they deserve. We are not looking for a knockout; we’re just looking to put on a great show and get the win so I can put our city on the map again since Danny Garcia just lost the title. Someone needs to stand up for Philadelphia. I feel I’m the perfect candidate I have the look, skills, power, talent and the work ethic to put the city on my back. All in all it just my time and my city gets to witness the first step in greatness for Avery “A Plus” Sparrow.

“Training at home has been positive. I get to train alongside Bernard Hopkins, Jesse Hart and other top guys from Philadelphia who work hard and push me. They give me good advice and knowledge of the game. We also have the best fighters in the world here so I get the best sparring. By training in Philly, my team and I can’t go wrong. I’m at the point in my life and career where I’ve been through so much there’s nothing negative about anything in my life.

Just waking up in the morning is blessing to me. I could have trained anywhere and still been focused.

“I like Anthony; he’s a good guy, very humble and a good fighter. I just feel like he missed his window. He’s been stopped, he has two losses and he’s just not mean enough to beat a guy like me I’m ready to die in there and I don’t think he is.”

TRAINER Greg Hackett:

“Everyone knows what it is. They are coming to see Anthony Burgin get his head chopped off. This is not a fight; this is an execution. Avery Sparrow looks like a brand new Bugatti on the showroom floor. His ability to focus has been amazing. Anything I ask for, he gives it to me. He turned it up for this fight. Anthony Burgin is a prime duck, ready to be plucked!”

Fred Jenkins, Jr.:

“Camp has been awesome. I can’t wait for this fight. It is everything. It’s not just a fight, it’s do or die. I look at all my fights the same. I go about it as if it’s a fight, it’s boxing. Boxing is fighting. All that extra shit people do, that’s not me, it’s just this is life and death, it’s a fight and I’m gonna get in there and fight the best fight I ever fought. Throughout my life I have been training around world champs and contenders.

“I am not looking past this fight. I look past no one. I’m the son of a man who has been around for a long time and I know they know me. Every opponent is coming to fight and either knows or assumes they know who I am because of my dad. It means a lot to be fighting the semifinal, but you’re supposed to go into every fight the same. It’s not about thinking this fight is more important than that fight. The job is to go in there and win by any means necessary. The object is to win. My goal is to get in there and win every time.

“Zapata is just a fighter who comes to fight. He’s fighting Fred Jenkins Jr. this time and he’s in for a real fight. He has never fought anybody before. He’s fighting somebody now. If you want to know more, come see fight night what I am about. I saw him fight Isaiah Wise and it was a good fight. One thing I noticed was that he threw a lot of punches and Wise was still fighting. Wise was really hitting him but he (Zapata) was out-working Wise. I saw what Zapata can do but I’m a fighter and I’m just gonna get in there and fight until the end. I live for this; I get a kick out of it. I love it. I’m not the bragging and boasting type. I’m a quiet guy but when the heat is on I’m gonna fight.”

TRAINER Fred Jenkins, Sr.:

“Fred looks superb. Whatever Zapata brings to the table we are going to match it. After this fight we are looking to move into co-main event position.”

Roque Zapata:

“I feel honored to be back fighting in Philadelphia. Knowing that my performance is what brought me back and that is what I plan to do, give the fans a fight! Of course, I want to get the win but it’s up to me to see if I can pull the trigger and perform at the absolute best.”

“Jenkins has a lot more boxing experience. It doesn’t bother me at all. All I know is that Jenkins is going to do what he always does best and I’m going to do what I do best. One of us will get the best of the other and on Friday night everyone will see who is better.”

“I am not worried about coming to his backyard or being the underdog. In my MMA days and in boxing I’ve been fighting in the other guy’s backyard a lot and I love it. I know I’ll get the best Fred Jenkins, Jr., that night and it’ll be fun. Being the underdog isn’t something I worry about. I’ve been the underdog in all of my fights. To me it means people are doubting my abilities and that’s fine. I’m used to it.”

TRAINER Eric Zamora:

“He is very focused and hungry for this fight. He’s put in the necessary work to have his hand raised on March 10. We have enhanced his strengths and worked on his weaknesses. Expect to see a Roque like never before.”

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