Brazil’s Eder Jofre Leads the List of South American Favorites
By: Ken Hissner
This writer remembers reading about Brazil’s Eder Jofre seeing a dead chicken ran over by a vehicle in the middle of the road. He never ate meat again.
Jofre was 46-0-3 before this World Bantamweight champion was defeated. He added the WBC and WBA belts to his World belt. He had rematches with Argentina’s Ernesto Miranda, 15-3-1, who was living in Spain when they drew twice. He defeated Miranda twice when he was 40-3-4 for the South American Bantamweight title. Miranda ended his career with 99 wins. All four fights with Miranda were in Brazil. He drew with Manny Elias, 44-17-1, in November of 1965 between his only two losses to Flyweight champion Japan’s WBA, WBC and World champion Fighting Harada which both defeats were in Japan.
It took almost five years to defeat Elias, 51-21-2 in their rematch. It was in May of 1970. The first Harada fight ended in a split decision in Nagoya, Japan, in May of 1965. The rematch took place after the Elias draw in Nippon, Japan, in May of 1966.
Jofre’s third draw was against Uruguay’s Ruben Caceres, 11-1-5, in May of 1958 in Uruguay in Montevideo, Uruguay. In their rematch in July of 1959 Jofre knocked out Caceres in 7 rounds.
Jofre would only have his second bout outside of Brazil in August of 1960 when he defeated Mexico’s Jose “El Huitlacoche” Medel, 43-16-3, by 10th round knockout in a NBA Bantamweight eliminator at the Olympic Auditorium in L.A. In November he won the vacant NBA Bantamweight title knocking out Eloy “Emeterio” Sanchez, 25-12, in 6 rounds at the same facility. He had defenses against the former European champ then the Italian champ Piero Rollo, 53-6-6, stopping him in 9 rounds. He knocked out the OPBF champion Japan’s Sadao Yaoita, 43-9-2, in 10 rounds. He stopped the British champion Johnny Caldwell, 25-0, in the 10th round.
Jofre would travel back to the US in his next fight and win the Bantamweight World title stopping Mexico’s Herman Marques, 19-8-1, living in Stockton, CA, in the 10th round at the Cow Palace in Daly City, CA. Then give Medel a rematch knocking him out in 6 rounds.
Then Jofre would go to Japan for the first time knocking out Japan’s OPBF champion Katsutoshi Aoki, 33-1-1, in 3 rounds. Then travel to the Manila, in the Philippines, stopping Filipino Johnny Jamito, 33-2-2, who couldn’t come out for the last round after being knocked down in the previous round.
Next Jofre went to Bagota, Colombia, knocking out Bernardo Caraballo, 39-0-1, of Colombia in the 7th round. Next up was the first loss to Harada losing his title. After the second loss to Harada he moved up to featherweight. It took fifteen fights for him to win the WBC World Featherweight title by majority decision over Cuban Jose “Pocket Cassius Clay” Legra, 131-9-4, living in Spain, over 12 rounds in Brazil. Legra would have two fights after this losing to Nicaragua’s Alexis Arguello in his last fight by knockout.
In Jofre’s next two fights which were non-title he knocked out possibly Chile’s greatest fighter in Godfrey Stevens, 71-7-3, in 4 rounds. Then American Frankie Crawford, 38-17-5, was defeated over 10 rounds. In his first defense he would end the career of the former WBC champion Vicente “El Zurdo de Oro” Saldivar, 37-2.
Jofre would win six non-title fights before his final bout being a title defense defeating Mexican Octavio Gomez, 55-15-7, over 12 rounds. His final record was 72-2-4 (50) in October 8th 1976 at the age of 40. At age 82 Jofre is still seen at the fights in Brazil
More Boxing History
Christian Carto and Jerome Conquest Win in South Philly Friday
By: Ken Hissner
Kings Promotions returned to the 2300 Arena in South Philadelphia Friday featuring former National Golden Glove champion and current unbeaten bantamweight Christian Carto of South Philly.
In the Main Event bantamweight Christian Carto, 12-0 (11), of Philadelphia, went the distance for the first time easily defeating a game southpaw in Alonso “El Elegante” Melendez, 14-2 (12), of Chihuahua, MEX, over 8 rounds.
In the first round the taller Melendez used his reach but Carto landed several right hand body shots. Carto landed a flurry of punches without return to the delight of his many followers. In the second round a lead right from Carto to the chin of Melendez stopped him in his tracks. Carto followed-up with a 3-punch combination but ran into a left hand counter from Melendez to the chin. Carto landed four punches to the body of Melendez. In the third round Melendez landed a good right hook to the head of Carto. Melendez landed a right jab and was countered by a Carto left hook to the chin. Carto landed solid punches on two separate occasions to the chin of Melendez some twenty seconds apart. In the fourth round a left hook from Carto drew blood from the nose of Melendez. Carto jumped on Melendez landing a solid right uppercut to the chin. Melendez landed a counter left to the chin of Carto.
In the fifth round a lead right from Carto to the chin of Melendez backed him up several steps. Carto landed four unanswered punches to the body and head of Melendez. In the sixth round Melendez landed a left to the face of Carto who returned four punches to the head without return. In the seventh round Carto landed four punches without return backing up Melendez several steps. Carto landed four body punches before Melendez returned a left to the chin of Carto. In the eighth and final round Carto continued to dominate the bout. Melendez was returning to the ring after a two year lay-off.
All 3 judges Dave Braswell, John Poturaj and Marc Werlinsky as well as this writer had it 80-72 for the winner. “I was please with his performance,” said Mickey Rosati (trainer of Carto). The winner as usual had little to say “I felt real good,” said Christian Carto. He was mobbed by his many fans. At ringside was Mickey Rosati, Sr. with his granddaughter next to him. Sr. was an unbeaten boxer during a short stint in the ring.
In the co-feature lightweight southpaw Jerome “The Conqueror” Conquest, 9-2 (1), of Philadelphia, defeated Carlos “Rock Hands” Rosario, 7-3 (4), of Pennsauken, NJ, for the WBF North American junior lightweight title over 8 rounds.
In the first round Conquest used an effective jab to outwork Rosario. In the second round of a close contest Conquest out landed Rosario though few punches were landed. In the third round there was a lack of action with Conquest landing what little did land. In the fourth round a “fight broke out” with both landing combinations. At the bell Conquest landed several punches to the chin of Rosario.
In the fifth round both fighters threw punches at the same time with a Rosario punch going south of the border dropping Conquest. Referee Conquest was given a full 5 minutes to re-coup. When the contest continued Conquest went right after Rosario landing a flurry of punches. In the sixth round Rosario did too much “posing” as Conquest dominated with his jab dancing around the ring. In the seventh round Rosario landed a lead right to the chin of Conquest. Knowing he was behind Rosario loaded up hoping to land the right hand as Conquest kept him at bay for the most part with his jab. In the eighth and final round Conquest stunned Rosario with a right hook to the head. Conquest countered with a straight left to the chin of Rosario. The last 30 seconds were the best of the fight with both throwing bombs and Conquest getting in the better of the two.
Judges David Braswell and Lynne Carter scored it 77-74 while judge John Poturaj had it 78-73. This writer had it 79-73. Representing the WBF were Greg Hackett and James Gibbs. The referee was Benjy Esteves, Jr.
“It was a great fight as I expected. They have been asking for this fight for a year. I’m getting better and better every year and I want more competition even with the limited amateur experience. I took his best shot and I used my jab knowing he couldn’t adjust to my boxing ability while he loaded up with his right hand,” said Conquest.
In the opening bout super lightweight from North Carolina Maynard Allison, 9-2 (6), now out of Philadelphia, was stopped at the end of the second round by Juan Rodriguez, 8-7-1 (6), of Haymarket, VA.
In the first round Allison countered the body of oncoming Rodriguez. In the second round Allison is missing wild overhand rights following his jabs but Rodriguez couldn’t take advantage of this until all of a sudden “bang” and down went Allison. It was a short right hand to the chin by Rodriguez who had a bloody nose. Allison beat the count but referee Dali waved it off as the bell sounded.
Allison is originally from NC and his trainer is former boxer Rasheed Brown questioned this but got no answer. “He had his moments but in the second round I felt I was starting to get to him,” said Rodriguez.
Super lightweight David “Two Gun” Gonzales, 8-2-2-1nc (2), of Philadelphia, and Darius “I Am King” Ervin, 4-1-1nc (0), of L.A. ended up in a No Decision do to a clash of heads at 1:53 of the second round. The referee was Dali. “He stopped it do to a cut by my left eye,” said Gonzales. The cut was under the eye lid.
In the first round there were more misses than connections. In the second round the much shorter Gonzales tried his best to make a fight out of it but ran into the first punch of the fight landed by Ervin a right to the chin. Referee Dali had his hands full separating these two. Do to a clash of heads Gonzales was examined by the ring physician who halted the bout. This saved the fans of 5 more rounds like the first one.
Super welterweight southpaw Erik “Abnormal” Spring, 10-2-2 (1), of Reading, PA, was upset by Anthony “Put ‘em down” Prescott, 7-7-2 (2), of Cherry Hill, NJ, over 6 rounds.
In the first round Spring did enough to outwork Prescott. In the second round Prescott pinned the taller Spring in a neutral corner. Prior to the end of the round Prescott had Spring in trouble. In the third round Prescott continued to press the action getting the better of Spring.
In the fourth round Spring worked his way back into the fight landing lead left hands to the head of Prescott who countered well but not well enough. In the fifth round Spring continued outworking what looked like a tiring Prescott. In the sixth and final round Prescott countered with several hard right hands to the chin of Spring.
Judge Braslow had it 58-56 while judges Poturaj and Werlinsky had it 59-55. This writer had it 58-58.
Light heavyweight Brandon Robinson, 7-1 (6), of Upper Darby, PA, stopped George Sheppard, 1-3 (0), of Norfolk, VA, at 1:20 of the fourth and final round.
In the first round Robinson was the aggressor. At the bell both fighters were letting leather fly. In the second round Sheppard stood his ground willing to exchange with Robinson who outworked Sheppard with combinations mostly to the head. Sheppard decided to start moving backwards and was taking quite a bit of punishment from Robinson to the body and head.
In the third round Robinson continued to dominate. In the fourth and final round do to a clash of heads Sheppard took a knee. When time resumed Robinson jumped all over Sheppard landing a barrage of punches having Sheppard hanging over the ropes facing the crowd when referee Dali had no choice but to halt the contest. A jubilant Robinson said “I took the fight on a weeks notice.”
Super featherweight Roberto “Infamous” Irizarry, 4-1-1 (0), of Camden, NJ, defeated southpaw Bryan Perez Nevarez, 2-8-1 (1), of Carolina, PR, over 4 close rounds.
In the first two rounds it was the southpaw Nevarez landing several overhand lefts to the chin of Irizarry. At the 10 second warning ending the first round there was a clash of heads as the time ran out ending the round.
In the third round Irizarry got his best punch in up until then a lead right to the chin of Nevarez. In the fourth and final round both fighters let it all hang out. Nevarez had asked Irizarry to come in and fight and he should have watched what he asked for as Irizarry came in and fought.
All 3 officials had it 39-37. This writer had it 38-38.
In the first walkout bout light heavyweight Amir Shabazz, 4-2 (0), of Philadelphia, was stopped by Alan Lawrence, 2-0 (2), of Newark, NJ, at 1:24 of the first round.
In the first round of action a crushing left hook from Lawrence to the chin of Shabazz dropped him under the ropes. Referee Eric Dali immediately waved it off.
In the second walkout bout welterweight Rasheed Johnson, 2-1 (1), of Philadelphia, knocked out Demetrius Williams, 1-4 (0), of Philadelphia, at 0:36 of the first round.
It was all over in the first round when Johnson landed a lead right hand flattening Williams. Referee Esteves didn’t even have to count.
The ring announcer was Alex Barbosa. It was a very large crowd with Eleven Sports broadcasting the event.
Lundy Wins and Ennis Stays unbeaten at 12-0 in Philly Friday!
Lundy Wins and Ennis Stays unbeaten at 12-0 in Philly Friday!
By: Ken Hissner
Peltz Boxing, BAM Boxing and RAGING BABE returned once again to the 2300 Arena in South Philly with veteran “Hammerin” Hank Lundy’s return to Philly for the first time since 2010. Top Philly prospect Jaron “Boots” Ennis increased his unbeaten win streak to 12.
In the main event Lightweight “Hammerin” Hank Lundy, 28-6-1 (14), of Philly, scored a knockdown and stopped late substitute Dany Evangelista, 20-8-2 (16), of Mexico City, at 2:53 of the fifth round in a scheduled 8.
Lundy easily won the first two rounds ending the last part of the second round switching to southpaw. In the third round Lundy landed a solid left hook to the head of Evangelista stunning him.
Evangelista landed his best punch so far in the fight a right to the midsection of Lundy and repeated it at the bell. In the fourth round while in close Lundy landed a double left hook to the head of Evangelista.
In the fifth round Evangelista landed a solid lead right to the head of Lundy.
Lundy looked angry from that and came back with a flurry of punches dropping Evengelista and causing a cut over his left eye. He got up but didn’t respond when referee Gary Rosato asked him to raise his hands so he stopped it.
In co-feature super welterweight Native American Mark Daniels, Jr., of Crandon, WI, 3-1 (1), suffered his first loss when Isaiah Wise, 5-1 (3), of Philly, used a good body attack for all 6 rounds to take the decision.
In the opening round Daniels had his way halfway thru until Wise landed several good body shots with left hooks. In the second and third rounds Daniels switched back and forth southpaw to orthodox but it didn’t matter to Wise who continued going to the body.
In the fourth round Wise landed a solid lead right to the chin of Daniels that stunned him. Daniels came back causing a small cut over the right eye of Wise. In the fifth round Daniels got in his best punch of the fight a left hook to the chin of Wise who came right back with a combination to the body of Daniels. In the sixth and final round Wise continued with a body beating.
Judge’s Poturaj and Lundy had it 59-55 while Kinney had it 60-54 as did this writer. Referee was Rosato.
Top Philly welterweight prospect Jaron “Boots” Ennis, 12-0 (10), scored his twelfth straight win in fourteen months stopping Wilfredo “El Zurdo” Acuna, 16-21 (12), of Managua, NIC, with a pair of knockdowns at 1:23 in the first round.
In the opening round Ennis switched from orthodox to southpaw against the southpaw Acuna and dropped him with a right hook to the chin. Acuna got up and was dropped by a vicious right to the mid-section and counted out by referee Talmadge.
“I always come out orthodox but switched to southpaw and will be back June 17th in Baltimore (per Victory Promotions Chris Middendorf),” said Ennis. In his corner as usual was his father/trainer “Bozy” Ennis. Middendorf and manager Cameron Dunkin have done a fine job keeping Ennis who will turn 20 this month busy.
In the walk out bout cruiserweight Alvin “Iron Majik” Varmall, Jr., 11-0-1 (9), of Catskill, NY, with a pair of knockdowns destroyed Juan Reyna, 6-7-1 (2), of Brownsville, TX, at 2:02 of the first round.
In the opening round Varmall came storming out with solid body work chasing Reyna. An overhand right near the back of the head by Varmall dropped Reyna. A vicious body attack and down went Reyna forcing referee Blair Talmadge to wave it off.
Super lightweight Scott Kelleher, 5-1 (3), of Philly, back from a 13 month layoff was dropped 3 times losing to Dion “Showtime” Richardson, 2-1 (1), of Newark, NJ, at 2:19 of the first round.
In the opening round a right hand from Richardson almost put Kelleher through the ropes causing a knockdown by referee Rosato. Shortly later another right hand dropped Keller down. Before the end of the round Richardson had Kelleher all bloody and down for a third time as referee Rosato waved it off. It was reported Kelleher suffered a broken nose.
In a good featherweight scrap Crystian Peguero, 2-0 (1), of Philly, scored a hard fought decision over Saquan “Roto Rooter” Felton, 0-2 (0), of Rochester, NY, over 4 rounds.
In a close first round Peguero came out looking for another early knockout as he did in his debut but Felton was having none of it. In the second round things heated up with both boxers landing well and sometimes landing at the same time to the chin. In the third round a short right by Peguero to the chin of Felton had him holding on. In the fourth and last round both let it all hang out with the shorter Peguero scoring well but not well enough for a knockdown or knockout.
Judge Lundy had it 39-37 while Poturaj and Kinney along with this writer had it 40-36 for the winner.
In the opening bout super welterweight Ishmael Altman, 0-0-1 (0), of Arapahoe, NC, got the short end of the stick drawing with Tyree Crowder, 0-0-1 (0), of Philly, that ended in a disputed draw over 4 rounds.
In the first two rounds it was all Altman being taller and using his reach chasing Crowder. In the third round Altman continues using his jab with Crowder countering. In the fourth and final round Altman seemed to post a shutout. Referee was Rosato.
Judges Lundy, Poturaj and Frisca all had it 38-38. This writer 40-36.
In a rematch Marko Bailey, 5-0 (3), of Durham NC, won by majority decision over southpaw Vinnie Denierio, 1-2 (1), of Geneva, NY, over 4 good rounds of boxing.
In the first round it was Denierio controlling with a jab and an occasional straight left to the chin of Bailey who was chasing him. In the second round Bailey got a couple of right’s to the head in but Denierio outworked him. In the third round Bailey knowing he may be behind in the scoring aggressively went after Denierio. In the fourth and final round it was all Bailey halfway through the round when both exchanged uppercuts to the chin. Bailey seemed to earn a draw taking this round.
Judges Kinney and Poturaj had it 39-37 while Frisca and this writer 38-38. Referee was Rosato.
Welterweight Marcel Rivers, 2-0 (1), of Philly, scored a knockdown in winning a decision over Jamaal “Shoota” Gregory, 1-0 (1), of Charlotte, NC, over a spirited 4 rounds.
In the opening round both boxers mixed it up well. In the second round Rivers knocked the mouthpiece of Gregory out twice. Gregory did get the last punch in at the bell. In the third round an overhand right from Rivers to the chin of Gregory dropped him. Gregory got up and fought back to a stand still with Rivers.
In the fourth and final round the taller Gregory came back in the best round of the fight to take the round. Referee was Blair Talmadge.
All 3 judges and this writer had it 39-36 for the winner.
In attendance were former Philly world champions “Joltin” Jeff Chandler and Bernard “Be-Hop” Hopkins. It was a sell-out crowd!
“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.
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.
Gerrie Coetzee the First African to Win the Heavyweight Title!
Gerrie Coetzee the First African to Win the Heavyweight Title!
By: Ken Hissner
After an amateur career with a 185-7 record Gerrie “Boksburg Bomber” Coetzee would start the long journey to be the first African to become the world heavyweight championship. Losing 3 times to Kallie Knoetze came to an end when in 1973 he stopped Knoetze for the Senior Amateur title. What seemed as a long shot he would overcome all the odds and road blocks he would encounter along the way.
Coetzee would turn professional in September of 1974 against the former South African champion Chris Roos, 11-6-2, seemed like the right opponent to start his career. In having what would be his only scheduled 4 rounder in his career he won the decision over Roos in Johannesburg, South Africa. He would score knockouts in his next 3 fights with a pair of first round knockouts of which one was an opponent from the Netherlands and another from the UK.
After Coetzee’s sixth fight he had won 3 by knockout and 3 by decision. Wanting to get a rematch for those he won decisions over he aimed to show improvement in knocking them out in return matches. He would start with Hennie Thoonen, 4-1, some 7 weeks after defeating him and coming off another decision win some 20 days after defeating Amedeo Laureti, 6-5-1, all over 6 rounds. Thoonen would be halted in 3 rounds this time. This followed with a rematch with Chris Roos who hadn’t fought in 13 months since being defeated by Coetzee. It was a totally different outcome this time stopping Roos in 3 rounds in his first scheduled for 8.
Feeling confident Coetzee would take a giant step taking on the veteran Jimmy Richards, 26-9-4, in February of 1976. Richards was 10-0-1 having won the South African title and drawing with American Henry Clark but losing his title to Mike Schutte over 12 rounds. Coetzee defeated Richards over 6 rounds. Then he moved back up to an 8 rounder against Hartmut Sasse, 11-6-1, from Europe and found himself on the canvas in the first round. He was able to rebound and take an 8 round decision over Sasse.
Then Coetzee had a rematch with Richards some 6 weeks after defeating him. This time he stopped Richards in the 9th of a 10 rounder. Next up American Ron Stander, 30-9-2, was brought in. He had failed in a world title fight with “Smokin” Joe Frazier. He stopped Stander in the 8th round of a 10. This set the stage for his first shot at the South African title against champion Mike Schutte a month later.
Schutte, 32-5-1, was on a 14 fight win streak at the time. It had been almost a year since taking the title from Richards and this would be his first defense in August of 1976. Coetzee was 12-0 at the time with almost 2 years of experience. By the 6th round Schutte was DQ’d and Coetzee was the new South African champion. Coetzee injured his right hand in this fight.
It would be 2 ½ months later when Coetzee would defend against his old nemesis from the amateurs Kallie Knoetz, 6-1, who had defeated Coetzee 3 times before Coetzee ended his amateur career stopping Knoetz. Coetzee went against his physician’s advice to fight having a pulled muscle in his back. Knoetz just 2 weeks earlier lost for the first time by DQ. This would be a 10 round non-title bout. Coetzee would take a decision win over Knoetz.
Now it was time for Coetzee to make the first defense of his title. He was considered the white champ and would be taking on the non-white champion James Mathatho, 12-4-1. He was 7-1-1 since taking his title. Coetzee would score a 7th round knockout. Pierre Fourie, 52-6-1, was next. He had failed twice trying to take Bob Foster’s light heavyweight title and failed both times. He was now on a 3 fight win streak. Coetzee would score a knockout in 3 rounds.
Next up would be a rematch for Coetzee with Schutte whom he won the South African title over. Schutte had rebounded defeating Americans Rodney Bobick and Chuck Wepner. Coetzee would take a 12 round decision over Schutte this time but had hurt his left hand in the second round and his right hand in the third round but showed quite a bit of courage in winning this fight over 12 rounds. After the fight his gloves had to be cut off due to the swelling in his hands.
After this fight a Johannesburg surgeon performed a complex operation on his right hand and also on his left hand at that time. He would be back in the ring 6 months later and win 4 straight fights against Americans stopping Tom Prater, 18-6-1, and Johnny Boudreaux, 20-2-1. He would be off for 5 months before taking on and defeating future cruiserweight world champion Randy Stephens, 10-3. It was a lack luster win and he would receive another operation after this fight and be out for 7 months returning to defeat American Ibar Arrington, 26-6-1.
This writer remembers Cus D’Amato telling me Bob Arum who had been with the IRS wanted him to come up with an idea of taking 2 black boxers to South Africa against 2 white challengers with the winners meeting. Knoetz, 17-2, was on an 11 fight win streak since losing to Coetzee and would meet Olympian John Tate, 18-0, who would knock out Knoetz in 8 rounds. Coetzee would meet former world champion and Olympic champion Leon Spinks, 7-1-1, who had lost in a rematch with Muhammad Ali in his previous fight.
It was in Monte Carlo in June of 1979 and Coetzee would score 3 knockdowns in the first round to stop Spinks earning a shot at the world title in meeting Tate, 19-0, some 4 months later. Before over 77,000 people in a South African stadium Coetzee would fall short losing a decision to Tate. In his first defense Tate would be knocked out by Mike “Hercules” Weaver while ahead on all 3 scorecards being knockout out in 2:13 of the 15th and final round.
His first fight back since losing to Tate, Coetzee would take on American Mike Koranicki, 22-5-2, who had just knocked out Knoetz in the 10th and final round. Coetzee scored a 1st round knockout. In October of 1980 Coetzee would get another shot at the world title that Weaver had won over Tate. He had Weaver hurt in the 8th round but didn’t finish him off. It would be Weaver’s first defense taking a close decision into the 13th round and knocking out Coetzee.
Coetzee would take his first fight outside of South Africa going to Hawaii and defeating American George Chaplin, 16-2-2, over a lack luster 10 rounds. Some 5 months later he would make his state side debut in America against Renaldo “Mr.” Snipes, 21-0, for the right to meet WBC champion Larry Holmes, but lost a disputed split decision to Snipes in New York.
Coetzee would come back to South Africa and score 4 straight knockouts over American opponents with the last one in Atlantic City, NJ, stopping Stan Ward, 15-4-2, in 2 rounds. He would return to the American City, fighting to a draw with future world champion Pinklon Thomas, 20-0. One judge had it for Coetzee but the other two called it a draw. Thomas would take the WBC title from “Terrible” Tim Witherspoon the following year.
For Coetzee he would meet American Michael “Dynamite” Dokes, 26-0-2, who had taken the WBA title from Weaver by a disputed stoppage and fought to a draw in the rematch in his previous fight before meeting Coetzee. The fight would take place in Richfield, OH, the home state of Dokes and promoter Don King. It was September of 1983 and Coetzee would have his third chance to win a world title. He was a 5-1 underdog. He had dropped Dokes in the 5th round and seemed to tire late in the fight. He was slightly ahead on all 3 scorecards and scored a sensational knockout in the 10th round achieving his dream of being the first African world heavyweight champion. It was reported he received $250,000 to $750 that Dokes the champion received.
Bringing the WBA title back to South Africa Coetzee would make his first defense some 15 months later. A unification bout with Larry Holmes had fallen through. Coetzee had 23 surgeries on his right hand during his career having his bones fused together and was given the moniker the “bionic hand.” His challenger would be American Greg Page, 23-3, who was coming off 2 straight losses, one a loss to Witherspoon for the vacant WBC title but still ranked No. 6. He was from the same city, Louisville, KY, that Ali was from and tried to imitate the same style as Ali. Coetzee was down in the sixth being hit after the bell and in the seventh round. He seemed to recover and started to outbox Page in the 8th round but would be knocked out in the 8th round at 3:50, of the round that had gone well over the 3 minute mark. Pages manager Janks Morton was yelling at the time keeper prior to the stoppage about the fight continuing past the 3 minutes. The WBA Championship committee denied a protest from Coetzee, and Page’s win was upheld.
It would be 9 months before Coetzee would fight again taking on American James “Quick” Tillis, 31-6, winning over 10 rounds. He came in at a career high 232 for this fight. It would be his last fight in South Africa. He would travel to the UK and take on Frank Bruno, 27-1, at the same weight with the winner to fight Witherspoon now the WBA champion. Coetzee was knocked out in the first round. Bruno would lose to Witherspoon in his next fight. Soon after this Coetzee would move his family to America.
Coetzee had Hal Tucker as his manager and co-manager Jock Lewin and later Peter Vension as his manager. His trainers were his father Flip Coetzee, Willie Locke and Jackie McCoy.
It would be 7 ½ years when Coetzee would make a comeback winning 3 straight knockouts in California He had retired after the second win and come back some 3 years later. He was 41 at the time of his return. He would then have the final fight of his career at age 42 against the former middleweight and light heavyweight champion Iran “The Blade” Barkley, 40-12, in Hollywood, CA, coming in at 253 lbs. Barkley was on a 7 fight win streak and a title called the vacant World Boxing Board was at stake. He would drop Barkley in the second round but tired as the fight progressed. Barkley scored a 10th round stoppage ending the career of the first African to ever win a world title, Gerry Coetzee, 33-6-1 (21)! Barkley would never defend the title. Coetzee would return to live in South Africa.
KEN HISSNER: Being the first African to win a world title must have been a dream come true for you.
Yes, I was very proud to open all doors, for all people, and the boxers in Africa. I really was excited to get a third opportunity for the WBA World title against Michael Dokes. Many people in South Africa told me to go to the USA early in my career, but I was so attached to my family, I could not leave them in South Africa. I need to highlight when I went to the USA to meet my USA trainer Jackie Mc Coy I was so impress with him I knew he is the man that shall make me the next World Champ. He asked me to write down what my training sessions was in South Africa. I wrote it down and gave it to him, the next day he said softly. Do I want to impress him, I said no Uncle Jackie this is what I did for my previous fights. He looked at me and said, this will be cut by fifty present as I was over trained for most of my fights. He took over the training and it was a new me. This made me extremely positive, I felt light and quick and could not believe that I won some of my previous fights in that condition and with bad hands. Since my victory over Dokes South Africa and Africa produced many more world champs, it opened the door for them to get the opportunities many couldn’t before
KEN HISSNER: Did you get discouraged having lost in two attempts at the title when you met Michael Dokes for another chance for the title?
Losing to John Tate the next day I could not face the public and press the fight was of such magnitude it drew 96 thousand people it filled Loftus rugby stadium. It was very difficult since that time; I never realized that I was over trained. That is why I felt weak and slow during the fight and the press and public blamed it on me being unfit. Although it went 15 rounds I was weak before even entering the ring after the fight a couple of days later I swallowed tablets because I could not accept that I lost that fight, with all the training as Tate was not a strong puncher and could not take a punch. I was convinced I would beat him. My wife called a doctor when this happened he came to our house and monitored the situation until I was stable and, the doctor found no permanent damage, I just had a good sleep. Luckily my wife managed to keep this away from all the press who would have loved to report this. Getting knocked out by Mike Weaver was even worse after the fight, as I trained even more for the Weaver fight, when watching the fight you will notice that I was holding onto the ropes and Weaver, from round one, I had one good round as my trainer Allan Toweel had me doing 15 rounds of sparing the Friday night before the fight, with 3 different sparring partners from the USA. This loss also had bad publicity and again I was depressed and negative for not being able to win and felt I disappointed my fellow countrymen. I was depressed and embarrassed by my loss that I stayed in bed for around 3 weeks and allowed no one to talk to me, my wife and my cocker spaniel who stayed by my side helped me not to do anything drastically as she knew how I felt and what happened the last time.
KEN HISSNER: Was there any talk of meeting Dokes or Pinklon Thomas whom you had drawn with in the previous fight before defeating Dokes?
Yes there was a lot of talk and pressure on me, for the Pinklon Thomas fight. I broke my right hand again in sparing preparing for that fight. Every person involved in boxing knew about my broken hand. I am sure a promoter, manager or a trainer paid one of my sparing partners to make a fight of my sparing session, to use his elbows, and his head, my sparring partner changed his style of boxing leading into the fight . I kept on training with my broken hand. When I entered my dressing room, the night of the fight, there was an official in the dressing room watching me with an eagle eye. I started to get undressed and put my boxing trunks on. I had a terrible headache and wanted to take a tablet for the headache, before I could take the tablet the official slap the tablet and water out of my hand. He then picked up the tablet in order to keep me from taking it and he was there all the time until we left for the ring. I suppose he had it tested, that did not concern me accept the headache before the fight. I knew they can test it but I was clean. As you know it was a draw, but I can’t recall the round, when I thru my right hand, I could clearly see his eyes rolled, this is a sure sign that I shook him, with my broken hand. He himself had an explosive jab that made you think twice what to do. He also gave me a tremendous cut above my left eye. That evening at their apartment my trainers were loud and the neighbors called the cops, my mom called me immediately as I stayed close by, fortunately I arrived just in time as the cops pulled their guns pointing it at my dad as he kept on moving towards them, I rushed passed them and picked my dad up and took him up stairs and locked the door. I warned him not to open his mouth again; the cops recognized me as they were watching the fight earlier on. A couple of weeks later they brought me a card which allowed me having any moving violation without getting a fine
KEN HISSNER: Did you think the loss to Page getting stopped after the 3 minute mark would be reversed?
With apartheid here in South Africa, it would not have been reversed. For Don King to support and promoting me, he would come across that he supported apartheid, which I don’t agree with as we are all people, unfortunately this is not how it works. The only way out for Mr. King was to sell me for an enormous amount of money, and wipe his hands clean. Again I broke my right hand thumb during sparing, when this happened the people around the ring heard the bone snapped. Jackie McCoy said immediately that I must stop. I completed the round as I did not want the people to know I broke my hand. We went to get x-rays of my hand and it showed that my metacarpal was severely broken. Uncle Jackie said there was going to be no fight with Page, Stan Christodolou who was the head of the boxing board met with us the following day and we showed him the x-rays his response was that Tommy Hearns had his right hand broken and went ahead with the World Title fight by only using his left hand and faking with the right. Uncle Jackie told him that this would never happen in the USA and Stan told him we are not in the USA and if I did not fight he will make sure the WBA would strip me of the title. My response to him was then I will fight with both hands broken. Uncle Jackie did not condone this, on the night of the fight the boxing board doctor injected me with the same stuff the dentist use to num your gums. After the injection I fell asleep and they had to wrap my hands while I was sleeping, Uncle Jackie woke me up when they were announcing the fight. I went in without warming up; many people mentioned that I only started to look better in the 8th round when the injection was wearing off. This was when I was knocked out, most of the damage was done when the bell rang and I turned away and walked to my corner and he came from behind and hit me with a overhand right, which I never saw and I went down.
KEN HISSNER: You had 23 operations on your right hand. What kind of effect did this have over your career?
It was an extra large and serious problem for me during my career, my left hand was broken twice and my right hand was serious with twenty three operations. After the twenty third operations Dr Boonzaier mentioned that this is the last operation that he will do on my hands. His theory was: There was a man with short legs and long arms, which nearly touched the floor. He asked the Dr. to shorten his arms, the Dr. said yes it can be done and he will look like a normal person, but let me tell you one possibility, you can get an infection in one of your arms and then we have to amputate the arm. Then he looked at me seriously and said we can no longer operate on your hand as there were too many ops on your hand and you can end up with only one hand. Training was a terrible problem, as the broken hands prevented me for getting back into the gym. I couldn’t fight too often and when I had a fight I sometimes went in with a broken hand and other times broke it during the fight. My punching power was not there in many fights and I felt I could have had more knockouts. To make it short and sweet I fought more or less with sixty percent of my fights, with broken hands.
KEN HISSNER: In your next fight you would defeat Tillis. Did you know at the time it would be your last fight in South Africa?
I knew I was at the end of my career, my mother passed away on Monday the week of the event; we were unable to cancel the fight because of the date was set for the television. This was the worst time of my life to continue with that fight. But at least I won, I forced my memory to think that I am doing it for my mother, as I was a real mama’s boy.
KEN HISSNER: You travel to the UK and get stopped by Frank Bruno and announced your retirement. Bruno would lose in his next fight losing to Witherspoon for his WBA title. What made you come back over 7 years later?
I was asked by Sol Kersner from Sun International to win two fights and then Larry Holmes. Larry played the same game again as after the Dokes fight Promoter offer him 5 million then He wants 10 million then they offer him 10 million, surprise he then wants 15 million and so on, it never stopped. Renaldo Snipes fought him and dropped Larry. I fought Snipes and drop him twice. Larry didn’t want to fight me, signed many agreements and took upfront money when signing. The love for the UNITED STATES, it is as my country and my youngest daughter is an AMERICAN CITIZEN as well as my grandson.
KEN HISSNER: You won 3 straight by knockout on your return with your weight now over 250 lbs. You are stopped by former 2-division world champion Iran Barkley ending your career. Did you know it was over this time for good?
Re the Barkley fight, it sounds that I have an excuse for every fight I lost. You can check and verify, that my trainer Uncle Jacky had throat cancer and I took that fight without a trainer and training maybe once a week at the gym by myself and the rest is history.
KEN HISSNER: South Africa changed dramatically upon the release of Nelson Mandela’s release from prison in 1990. Were you living in South Africa at the time or did you move back afterwards his taking over the country?
I was then all ready in the USA. When I returned from the USA Nelson Mandela wanted to meet me, and I was so privy to meet such a great man .He gave me goose bumps and He reminded me of Ali. There is only good things you can say of our Madiba which Means Father of the Nation.
KEN HISSNER: When was it when you met Mandela and under what circumstances?
GERRIE COETZEE: I recon it was in 2000 or 2001 I shall find out. I went to his government section and I was so nerves. I was so proud when he accepted my gold coin with my face on it. What a great and wise man there is only respect for him.
KEN HISSNER: You had an outstanding career. When did you have what was called the “bionic hand” and was it an asset
After my second Mike Schutte South African title fight it was more of a problem but the press enjoyed it
KEN HISSNER: I understand from Macauley Utuk that Fonta Brilla Productions wants to do a movie of your life. How exciting would that be and have you agreed to it?
Yes, thank you it will be very exciting. I am a supporter of all USA Presidents and the country. I never miss the Presidential elections, on TV. And I would be honored to have a movie made by an American company.
KEN HISSNER: I’ve wanted to do an article on you for years and want to thank you for taking the time out to respond to these questions.
I sincerely appreciate it and it is a big honor for me.
KEN HISSNER:Thank you for taking the time out to respond to these questions.
There is so much more exciting things I can tell you. When I lost an amateur boxing fight between the age of 10 to 12 years, my Father would give me a good hiding and told us he is going to run into another car on our way home, we all were crying, shaken and scared. An unknown person was tail gating our car and my father was so angry with my loss he hit the brakes and the person hit the back of our car, the impact was so big some of the smaller siblings went over the front seat. Later the cops came to our house and wanted to take a statement. My mother always knew how to handle the situation. Another time when I lost he stop behind a car at a shop and on my Mothers return, he started the car and accelerated into the car in front, then put the car in rear gear and hit the car behind him. Then he had a big space to exit and when we got home gave me another hiding. My Father was very aggressive when I lost but normally he is a very soft and kind person, assisting the poor people of all colours.
This was a quote:
A left hand that can thread a needle and a fist that can stun a Rhino. Yet 2 years ago boxing’s most valuable was so mangled in that fight with Mike Schutte that his boxing life hung on a thread.
Thank you let us know if there are any other questions as I have many more incidents in my career. For all the politics and injuries it was a miracle to make it to the top. My medical doctor, Dr Jock Lewin, who lives in America, said I was one of a kind and definitely not human.
Anthony “Bad Boy” Burgin loses split decision to Avery Sparrow in an All Philly War at 2300 Arena Friday!
Anthony “Bad Boy” Burgin loses split decision to Avery Sparrow in an All Philly War at 2300 Arena Friday!
By: Ken Hissner
Peltz Boxing, BAM Boxing, Joe Hand Promotions and Raging Babe returned to the 2300 Arena in South Philly with an all Philly main event. J Russell Peltz and BAM Rodgers served as matchmakers. This was the way Philly boxing should be!
In the main event lightweight Anthony “Bad Boy” Burgin, 10-3 (2), of N. Philly, lost a split decision to returning after a year Avery Sparrow, 6-1 (3), of N. Philly, over 8 rounds. Burgin was dropped once.
In the opening round Sparrow showed his quickness outworking Burgin. In the second round Sparrow continued being the quicker of the two but Burgin landed a “bolo punch” right to the midsection of Sparrow. It was a close round. In the third round Burgin came alive. It was a good round for Burgin who had been very methodical up to this point.
In the fourth round Sparrow landed a 3-punch combination getting Burgin’s attention. Burgin continued being the aggressor for the most part. A hard left hook by Burgin to the chin got Sparrow’s attention with about a minute left in the round. It was another close round. In the fifth round Sparrow outmaneuvered Burgin scoring points. Sparrow continues with hands low dancing around using angles to score points. In the sixth round Burgin drove Sparrow into the ropes with a combination. A right uppercut by Sparrow dropped Burgin to the canvas. He was able to box his way out of the round. In the seventh round Sparrow kept stepping around landing the jab but Burgin was landing the harder punches with left hooks to the head of Sparrow. In the eighth and final round Sparrow looked spent but kept moving as Burgin landed powerful left hook’s to the body. Both fighters let it all hang out right up to the bell.
Judge Myra Grant 76-75 Burgin, Judge Steve Weisfeld 76-75 Sparrow and judge John Poturaj 77-74 Sparrow as did this writer. Gary Rosato was the referee.
Super welterweight Fred Jenkins, Jr., 10-4 (1), of N. Philly, suffered a mild upset losing to Panama’s Roque Zapata, 3-1-3, of Culpeper, VA, by decision over 6 rounds. That’s two in a row for Zapata over Philly fighters.
In the first round Jenkins worked well to the body but got tagged midway by a right from Zapata on the chin. Just prior to the bell a short right by Zapata to the chin of Jenkins dropped him to a knee. He was up immediately but took the count from referee Bashir. In the second round Jenkins outworked Zapata who had a sneaky right that came out several times on the chin of Jenkins stopping him in his tracks. In the third round Jenkins did a workman like job and knocked out the mouthpiece of Zapata with a left hook to the chin.
In the fourth round Zapata started getting busier than he had in the first two rounds. He rocked Jenkins with a hard left hook to the chin. Jenkins lands punches well but leaves himself open for a counter. In the fifth round Zapata was beating Jenkins to the punch. An overhand right from Zapata to the chin rocked Jenkins. A Zapata right to the chin of Jenkins just prior to the bell had him wobble back to his corner. In the sixth and final round Zapata was looking for the knockout landing several power punch rights to the head of Jenkins who seemed to be fighting on instinct after being hurt bad at the end of the previous round.
Judge Jasper 57-56, judge’s Poturaj and Weisfeld 59-54. This writer had it 58-56.
Heavyweight Cassius Chaney, 9-0 (5), of W. Philly, won a majority lack luster decision over Tommy Washington, Jr., 6-10-1 (2), of Lansing, MICH, over 6 rounds.
In the opening round Chaney used his height and reach to out box Washington until a minute left in the round when Chaney landed 3 power punch right hands to the chin of Washington. In the second round Chaney continued to box Washington until a minute left in the round when Washington had enough and let it all hang out swarming over Chaney. By the end of the round Chaney was back in control. In the third round Chaney continued using his jab in a slow round.
In the fourth round at the halfway point Washington backed Chaney into a corner and landed a flurry of punches. Once back into the middle of the ring Chaney regained control. In the fifth round Chaney seemed to be running out of gas as Washington became more and more aggressive. In the sixth and final round of a close round Chaney rocked Washington with a right hand to the chin knocking him back several feet but he tied Chaney up until the bell sounded.
Judge Gail Jasper 57-57, John Poturaj and Steve Weisfeld 59-55 for Chaney. This writer had it 58-56 for Chaney.
Super welterweight Isaiah Wise, 4-1 (3), of S. Philly, stopped Jeffrey “The Prototype” Wright, 4-6-1 (4), of Milwaukee, WI, at 0:32 of the 4th round of a scheduled 6.
In the opening round it was all Wise with double left hooks to the body and head. The only moment Wright had was at the midway point of the round landing a stunning right to the chin of Wise having him hold on until his head cleared. In the second round Wise had Wright going thru the ropes and kept punch him before referee Rosato finally pulled Wise off. Wise was dishing out plenty of punishment until a right hand from Wright landed on the chin of Wise and down he went taking a knee.
In the third round it was all Wise with wicked body shots until a left hook to the body dropped Wright who beat the count but was dangerous to the end of the round. In the fourth round a flurry of punches by Wise dropped Wright. He beat the count but was obviously finished. Referee Rosato wisely stopped the bout.
Lightweight Joseph “Blessed Hands” Adorno, 3-0 (3), of Allentown, PA, electrified the fans and stopped Marco Ocano, 1-1 (1), of Agua Prieta, MEX, at 0:45 of the first round. Referee Bashir counted him out.
Ocano came out aggressively running into several left hooks by Adorno. Adorno landed an overhand right to the chin of Ocano having him out on his feet when referee Bashir wisely stepped in and stopped it. Adorno’s many fans went ballistic with the quick stoppage.
Lightweight southpaw PR Victor Padilla, 3-0 (3), of Berlin, NJ, scored a pair of knockdowns stopping Carlos Castillo, 4-5 (3), of Tucson, AZ, at 0:48 of the first round to the delight of his many fans.
Castillo raced out but ran into a left hook from Padilla and down he went. Shortly after Castillo got up he attacked Padilla with both throwing bombs until a Padilla left hook dropped Castillo face first to the canvas. He beat the count and argued with referee Blair Talmadge that he wanted to go on but the fight was over. Padilla had many fans going wild with the quick stoppage.
Super middleweight Chris “Sandman” Thomas, 5-0 (2), of Beachwood, NJ, easily defeated Mike Rodriguez, 0-5 (0), of Springfield, MASS, over 4 lopsided rounds. Referee Bashir had to break up the fighters throughout due to the holding of Rodriguez.
In the opening round Thomas took it to the much taller Rodriguez who spent the entire round doing more holding than punching. In the second round referee Ron Bashir saw enough of the holding and took a point from Rodriguez. In the third round and fourth round the awkward Thomas continued to outwork Rodriguez who continued holding.
Judges Jasper 39-36, Poturaj and Grant 40-35 as did this writer.
Super bantamweight PR Crystian Pequero, 1-0 (1), of NE Philly, made a sensational debut stopping Alonzo Davis, 0-1 (0), of W. Philly, at 2:12 of the third with a vicious body attack for the count.
In the opening round both fighters came out going at it. In the final minute Pequero landed hard rights to the side of Davis on two occasions hurting him. In the second round Pequero continued with the body shots until near the end of the round also going to the head having Davis out on his feet at the bell after receiving four body shots from Pequero.
In the third round with his fans yelling “Pequero, Pequero” Pequero continued working the body of Davis. A right uppercut to the midsection sent Davis down taking the count on one knee from referee Talmidge. In the corner of Pequero was Javier Varella.
In the opening bout flyweight Basyzbek Bartov, 1-1-1 (0), of KYR, NE Philly, won a split decision over Tyrone “T-Bone” Arzeno, 0-0 (0), of N. Philly, in an all action bout.
In the opening round both boxers let it all hang out. It was back and forth with Arzeno possibly having a slight edge. In the second round it was all Baratov putting pressure on Arzeno having him hurt against the ropes just prior to the bell. In the third round it was more of the Baratov did what he does best and slug. Arzeno’s round.
Judge Poturaj 39-37 Arzeno, Judge Grant and Jasper 39-37 Baratov. This writer had it 38-38. Chuck Diesel in Baratov’s corner and Chino Rivas in Arzeno’s corner.
Flyweight Ernesto Almodovar, 1-0 (0), of NE Philly, scored a knockdown and won a decision over 34 year-old debuting southpaw Steven Lopez, 0-1 (0), NE Philly, who never stopped trying, over 4.
In the opening round the southpaw Lopez boxed well keeping Almodovar on the defense until a lead right hand by Almodovar landed on the chin of Lopez dropping him. In the second and third rounds Almodovar used the lead right to keep Lopez in check. In the fourth and final round Lopez Almodovar got the better of the mix though it was Lopez coming forward not able to block the right.
Judge’s Jasper and Poturaj had it 39-36 while judge Weisfeld and this writer had it 40-35.
Ring announcer was Steve Mittman while Mike Mittman and Marc Abrams did the commentating for GFL-TV. Next show is June 2nd.
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.
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.