Jesse Valdez from the 1972 Olympics Was a Special Boxer
By: Ken Hissner
It was the summer of 1972 when this writer was watching the Olympic boxing from Munich, Germany. Who would know that the USA team would only win a total of 4 medal’s one being a Gold and three Bronze medals?
The one boxer on this team I always wanted to talk to was a Bronze medal winner Jesse Valdez out of Houston, TX. I started writing ten years ago and during that time I tried making contact with him but never was able to. Finally a week or so ago I saw an article by Rick Wright a Albuquerque Journal Staff Writer in New Mexico entitled “Boxing star Valdez still counting his blessings”. I was able to contact him and he gave me Jesse’s phone number and I took it from there.
“The Lord gave me a gift,” said Valdez. His first coach was Charles Cord.
There was one Gold medal winner on the 1972 team and it was “Sugar” Ray Seales from the Tacoma Boy’s Club that Joe Clough was coach. Seales would go into the professional ranks and end up with a 57-8-3 record with 34 knockouts.
Also on the team gaining a Bronze medal was future two-time world light heavyweight champion Marvin Johnson, 43-6 (35).I contacted him and he said “why would you want to do a story on me?” I said “you were an Olympian and a two-time world champion”. He agreed to do a story. I love it when they are as humble as Marvin was.
Another Bronze medal winner was Ricardo Carreras, of NY, representing the Air Force. After failing to make the 1976 Olympic teamhe turned professional in 1978 and went 2-0 (2).
Three other team members of the eleven turned professional who were Duane Bobick, of the Navy, 48-4 (42) who I did a story on, Reggie Jones, 16-9-1 (8), of the Marines, Louis Self, 3-2 (2), of the Air Force and Davey Lee Armstrong, 24-3 (6) who was also a team member of the 1976 team that I did a story on him and teammates.
Not turning professional were Raymond Russell, of the Marines, Louis Busceme, Louis Self of the Air Force and Tim Dement. “I love Jesse Valdez,” said Dement. Getting back to the other boxer representing the Air Force was Valdez who was the one boxer that stood out to this writer. My two favorite Olympians of all time were him and Chuck Walker from the 1976 team.
Walker said of Valdez: I was one of those glued to the TV in 1972 watching boxing in the Olympics at Munich. Everybody knows Jesse was THE guy. He was the darling that year. I was 14 and just started boxing. He was one of my early heroes. Never noted at all for power but could that guy box, very slick, clever and effective. I believe he won the Bronze but should have won the Gold. I got to know Jesse well when he was the assistant coach at the 1975 Pan Am Games in Mexico City. We (team) trained in Durango, Colorado for several weeks, then got outfitted in Dallas and then onto MC. Jesse was a great pal and coach. He related well with the guys since he was more our age. I remember one time we were riding a taxi to the coliseum for the fights. I was fighting and Michael Dokes was fighting that night. Jesse was trying to find a radio station in English and finally happened on a song by Barbara Streisand. Dokes acted like that was pure anathema and went for the dial. Jesse slapped his hand away and said “Look man….we finally found something in English. Let it be. You’re not going to find any soul music in this city. Dokes said “I don’t know what’s worse….no music at all or Barbara Streisand!!!” Jesse and I used to walk around the Pan Am village together just out of boredom. We went to a few musical acts just outside the pavilion on the grounds. Often we had lunch together in the big cafeteria. Jesse was the one that took me to the USA medical building in the village when I got my lip split by Clinton Jackson in a freak accident in sparring. He looked out for us because he had been there and knew what it was like. He knew it was a tough business and he tried to make it less so.
Valdez was also instrumental in calming what could have been a horrible situation when Tommy Sullivan won 100 bucks from Michael Dokes betting on pinball in the game room. Tempers flared and the two almost went together for real, but Jesse talked them out of it. Later that night 100 bucks came up missing from Tommy’s locker. Jesse, along with “Sugar” Ray suggested to the other fighters that we all put in a few bucks to get Tommy paid back. And then again the situation was controlled. I haven’t talked to Jesse in probably 35 years but have thought of him often and I’m glad to hear he’s doing well. If you talk to him give him my best and tell him I’ve had Burton Gilliam (from Dallas, TX) in several of my movies. Burton and Jesse fought several times back in the amateurs.
Valdez said he had about 200 fights but never kept track of his record. It was in 1964 that the then 16 year old Houston native won the National AAU welterweight championship upsetting Olympic Bronze medalist Quincy Daniels of the 1960 Olympics. Valdez would qualify for the 1964 Olympic team as an alternate. In that same year he toured as a member of the US team in Africa.
In 1967 Valdez won a Bronze medal at the Pan-American Games and was also the Golden Gloves champion. In 1970 he won the National AAU light middleweight title. In 1972 he won the Golden Gloves again and qualified for the US national team by defeating future world light heavyweight champion Eddie Mustafa Muhammad. “He cold cocked me and dropped me to a knee in the first round. I would return the favor in either the first or second round,” said Valdez.
At the Olympics in 1972 Valdez defeated KolmanKalipe (Togo) 5-0, Carlos Burga (Peru) 4-1 which I thought was a tougher fight than with the Cuban but Valdez disagreed, David Jackson (Uganda) 4-1, Anatoly Khohlov (Soviet Union) 5-0, before losing in the semi-finals to Emilio Correa (Cuba) 3-2. This writer thought Valdez won without any doubt.Correra also won the 1971 Pan-American Games and participated in the 1976 Olympics.
Valdez was in the Air Force never turning professional but even fought until 1980 at age 32 as an amateur. Junior Robles had him box on an amateur show against a Marine who outweighed Valdez by 40 pounds. “When I saw how big he was I moved and boxed him,” said Valdez. Robles also had him compete for the CA state amateur title in Sacramento where Valdez came out victorious.
“He gives boxing a good name because he was so kind hearted yet capable of destroying his opponents while staying calmly in control. Good manners are special and Jesse is someone worth writing about. Many years after the 1972 Olympics Jesse told me something to the effect that, I made an impression on him seeing me reading my Bible when we were teammates. What a great guy my brother Jesse is….he loves our Lord,” said Tim Dement. (1972 Olympian at 112)
“I heard about him before I met him. He was like a legend. Everybody talked about Jesse. In 1967 or 1968 I saw him fight Joe Cokes, brother of world champion Curtis Cokes whom he out boxed.He was a gentleman, smart and a classy fighter. I was in the Air Force five years and knew him for about three years. Jesse touched a lot of boxers lives in a very positive way. He is a good friend, mentor and was an inspiration to me. I was proud to be his teammate. When he boxed he was sweet, hard to hit and he could punch…..hard. Jesse coached all the 1972 USAF boxing team in the National AAU,” said Nick Wells.
Valdez was asked to go to Poland on the USA team by Robles whose father had a gym that Valdez was helping with the kids. “The Holy Spirit said why do you need to go. Also veteran USA team official Bob Surkant who was a father figure to me advised me not to go. So I told Robles I wasn’t making the trip. I almost fought Robles at the 1964 Olympic Trials,” said Valdez. Other boxers who claimed to be asked but didn’t make the trip were Jimmy Clark, Marvis Frazier, Bobby Czyz, Robert Hines and Davey Armstrong. The plane went down in Warsaw, Poland, killing all 87 aboard which included Robles.
“My wife Jackie and I got down on our knees and prayed thanking God that I didn’t go. My whole life changed after that, my faith became my way of living,” said Valdez When he told me they were living in San Diego I told him we had a Calvary Chapelchurch there (Harvest Christian Fellowship) where Mike MacIntoshwas the pastor. Valdez couldn’t believe it for he attended that same church. Pastor Chuck Smith was the founder of Calvary Chapel. I’ve attended three of their churches on a week-end in 1989 after starting in Philadelphia. He and his wife Jackie (originally from Buffalo, NY) now attend a Calvary Chapel church in Albuquerque where Skip Heitzig is the pastor. They have two sons James (42) and Jeremy (40).
“My oldest brother (Steve) was on the Air Force team with Jesse and we met at numerous tournaments and went overseas together. He was the greatest amateur of all-time. He could beat you many different ways. I was in awe of him. We were roommates at the Olympics. He met my family. He was like a brother and really humble. He came back from Italy and gave a picture of him and the Pope to my father. He was someone you looked up to and wanted to be like. He was a real role model,” said Tim Dement. (1972 Olympian)
Valdez told me “in 1972 I would spar with 156 pound team member Reggie Jones and I felt he stayed that heavy to avoid meeting me in the Olympic trials,” said Valdez.He said he worked with the Spinks brothers in 1976 and almost had to bring them home.
After leaving the Air Force, Valdez became a TV cameraman, first in Houston and then to San Diego. I told him I had notes that in 1974 he worked on the prison siege at the Huntsville, TX, State Prison. “I was sent to Huntsville where 5 prisoners were holding 5 guards as hostages,with (now well-known writer) Cal Thomas who was the reporter,” said Valdez. In 1976 Valdez working with the Spinks brothers and almost had to take them home.
In 1979 I was in Philadelphia at the Joe Frazier Gym where “Sugar” Ray Leonard, Marvin Stinson (1976 Olympic Alternate) and Leonard’s cousin O’Dell would be fighting in Philadelphia. The name Valdez came up and one of them informed me he was the one who started the bowing to the four corners prior to his fight. “I think I saluted but Correa did bow after that to the four corners. I would also go to my opponent’s corner after the fight before then returning to my corner,” said Valdez.
“Jesse Valdez, David Martinez and Mark Tessman were (boxers) who I wanted to be like,” said Termite Watkins. I got an email from him due to contacting the Texan boxers I had articles with and all Christians. Termite was 61-5-2 (42), and from Houston who fought for the WBC super lightweight title. He has a book called “Termite” about his experiences in Iraq as a pest control exterminator which is well worth reading. He’s a great friend and one of the most genuine and humble boxers I ever met. I’m honored to call him my friend today. We keep in touch on the phone. He may be the greatest amateur fighter I ever saw.
Valdez was kind enough to answer some questions.
KEN HISSNER: The first time I saw you was in the 1972 Olympics and was immediately impressed with your style of boxing. Was your coach Charles Cord responsible for that?
JESSE VALDEZ: In the long run I would say yes. I had him as my coach at a younger age.
KEN HISSNER: You winning the National AAU championship at 16 in 1964 defeating Quincey Daniels who was on the 1960 team did that qualify you as an alternate for that Olympic team?
JESSE VALDEZ: I lost to Maurice Trilot of the Marines and was an alternate.
KEN HISSNER: Did you get involved with making the 1968 Olympic team?
JESSE VALDEZ: I lost to Armando Muniz in the finals.
KEN HISSNER: What period of time were you in the Air Force?
JESSE VALDEZ: 1969-1972
KEN HISSNER: In 1972 you defeated Eddie Gregory (Eddie Mustafa Muhammad later) to qualify for the Olympic team. Was defeating him and Daniels two of your biggest wins prior to going to the Olympics?
JESSE VALDEZ: If I win I win but never think of who I fought.
KEN HISSNER: Were you still pretty active from 1972 to 1980 between your coaching at the 1975 Pan Am Games and still having some fights?
JESSE VALDEZ: I was an assistant at the 1975 Pan Am Games.
KEN HISSNER: Do you still stay in touch with any of your 1972 team members or have any re-unions?
JESSE VALDEZ: I don’t really except “Sugar” Ray Seales.
KEN HISSNER: Getting ripped off in the 1972 Olympics against the Cuban was that a deciding factor in not turning professional?
JESSE VALDEZ: I had two offers. One was to stay in Air Force as the boxing coach and from Bill Daniels owner of the Denver Rockets.
KEN HISSNER: How did the terrorist attack at the Olympics in Munich affect you and your teammates?
JESSE VALDEZ: We heard the gunfire. It was quite alarming.
KEN HISSNER: Not going to Poland in 1980 when their plane went down killing all aboard did that end your boxing career?
JESSE VALDEZ: It totally did. I was 35 at the time and figured at that age I was too old. Junior Robles convinced me to go but I changed my mind. He was among those killed on the airplane.
KEN HISSNER: I know you go back to Houston for some of the Golden Gloves tourneys. Are you completely out of training boxers now?
JESSE VALDEZ: Unless you’ve been in the ring it is hard to teach someone to box.
KEN HISSNER: I want to thank you for taking the time to answer questions and I have to tell you it is so rewarding to finally catch up to you.
JESSE VALDEZ: It was nice going back in time with you.
The Brothers Canizales Put Laredo, Texas on the Map!
The Brothers Canizales Put Laredo, Texas on the Map!
By: Ken Hissner
Gaby Canizales, 48-8-1 (36), held the WBA and WBO Bantamweight titles while his younger brother Orlando held the IBF Bantamweight, THE IBA Featherweight and the IBC Super bantamweight titles.
Gaby was born in 1960 and turning professional in 1979 while Orlando was born in 1965 and turning professional in 1984. Both became world champion putting their town of Laredo, Texas, on the map!
Gaby turned professional in Mexico winning his first 3 fights by first round knockouts. In July of 1980 he made his US debut in Laredo scoring a second round knockout. He scored knockouts in his first 9 fights before losing to Mario Nava, 9-3-1, in May of 1981 in their first of two fights. In the re-match in December Gaby defeated Nava, then 13-3-1.
“Gaby was managed by Dr. Luis Mendoza a Laredo physician throughout his early career helped Gaby. He was trained by a Mr. Infante as well as Tony Ayala, Sr. before Jesse (Reid) and then and later worked with Emmanuel Steward (Kronk) at the end of his career winning the Happy Lara bout in spectacular fashion. I worked with him until after the Chandler bout until he went with Kronk,” said Spagnola.
Gaby made his eastern debut in Atlantic City in June of 1982 winning the USBA bantamweight title stopping Diego Rosario, 14-1-1, in 5 rounds. He would go onto win his first 15 fights scoring 10 knockouts earning him a WBA bantamweight title fight against champion “Joltin” Jeff Chandler, 29-0-2, of Philadelphia, in Atlantic City, losing a decision over 15 rounds.
Gaby would bounce back winning 9 straight and 7 by knockout defending his USBA title twice. He stopped Ron Cisneros, 17-3 the fight after losing to Chandler, then stopped James Pipps, 23-0, and in what would be his fourth defense he decision Kelvin Seabrooks, 13-7. Seabrooks would go onto defeat unbeaten 1976 Olympian Louis Curtis and in his next fight win the IBF bantamweight title stopping Miguel Maturana in Colombia, South American, in May of 1987.
On the card where Gaby defeated Seabrooks his brother Orlando made his debut scoring a knockout in 2 rounds. Gaby would get his second chance at the WBA bantamweight title this time against Richie Sandoval, 29-0, who dealt the first and only defeat to Chandler for the title. This one took place on Sandoval’s turf in Las Vegas, NV. Gaby scored knockdowns in the first, third and 3 times in the seventh to take Sandoval’s title in March of 1986 some 3 years since suffering his first loss up until then to Chandler.
In Gaby’s first title defense 3 months later in June at the Meadowlands Arena in East Rutherford, NJ, he would lose over 15 rounds to Bernardo Pinango, 17-2-2, of Venezuela. He would return to the ring the end of the year and win 4 straight before returning to Mexico losing to Raul Perez, 34-1, being stopped in 9 rounds. It would be the only time Gaby would be stopped in his career of 57 fights. Perez would go onto win the WBC bantamweight title the following year.
Two fights later Gaby would defeat 1976 Olympian Louis Curtis to re-win the USBA title in Atlantic City in November of 1987. In his next fight he would lose that title to Kenny Mitchell, 15-7-3 by a 12 round split decision in Houston, TX. He would come back to win 5 straight of which 4 were in Arizona and the last one in Michigan.
In July of 1989 Gaby would return to Atlantic City and lose to Greg “The Flea” Richardson, 24-4, who would defeat Raul Perez in 1991 for the WBC bantamweight title. It would be Gaby who got a shot at Perez prior to Richardson losing over 12 rounds in their re-match at the Great Western Forum, Inglewood, CA, in January of 1990.
For Gaby he followed with a draw and 3 knockouts to get a shot at the vacant WBO bantamweight title against Miguel “Happy” Lora, 33-1, of Colombia whose only loss was to Raul Perez. The fight took place at the Palace, Auburn Hills, MI, with Gaby gaining a world title for the second time, scoring a second round knockout in March of 1991. Just 3 months later he would fight his final fight in losing to Duke McKenzie, 28-2, in London, UK, over 12 rounds. McKenzie would lose that title in 1992 but go onto win the WBO Super bantamweight title that same year.
By this time Gaby’s brother Orlando, 50-5-1 (37) had made 6 title defenses of his IBF bantamweight title. He had a record 16 as a bantamweight and was never stopped. He was inducted into the IBHOF in 2009. Orlando was having some career since making his debut going 11-0-1 before losing to future world champion and 1984 Olympic Gold Medalist Paul Gonzales, 4-0, for his NABF title losing over 12 rounds though having him on the canvas in round 3. It was the first of two bouts they would have but would wait 4 years for that one.
“I recruited Orlando after seeing him in the Texas State Golden Gloves final destroying National contender Brian Lonon from the powerful U.S. Army team in the finals. Orlando’s older brother Rick, a school teacher in Houston area at the time and brought me to meet the family and help him convince I would take care of their youngest son. I agreed to arrange a part time job for their Orlando in case his boxing dream didn’t work out and rather to live with the other fighters in the apartment I had for them so he could live with Rick in his home.The Canizalesfamily are an amazing crew, five boys raised humbly and with incredible support by their parents. All five achieved a minimum of a four year college degree. I could not think of a single championship quality fighter I have ever known with this type of resume, let alone a family legacy. So proud of the fact both brothers I got to work with are great successes in their post-fight careers.Husbands, fathers and careers giving back to their communities,” said Spagnola.
Orlando would go on a 23 fight win streak following the loss taking the NABF flyweight title in November of 1987, and winning the USBA super flyweight title in his next fight stopping Olympian Louis Curtis, 14-2-1, in 2 rounds in Atlantic City. This earned him a IBF world bantamweight title bout with Kelvin Seabrooks, 25-13, who also lost to brother Gaby on the card when Orlando debuted. Orlando was well ahead stopping Seabrooks in the fifteenth and final round.
Four months later Orlando would defend his title at the Freeman Coliseum, in San Antonio, TX, scoring a first round knockout over Miami’s Jimmy Navarro, 20-1, who he had down twice. In June of 1989 he would give Seabrooks a re-match almost 11 months since their first fight stopping Seabrooks, this time in 11 rounds again in Atlantic City.
In January of 1990 Orlando would travel to the UK and defeat the British champion Billy Hardy, 22-4-1, in a 12 round split decision. In June Orlando would finally get a re-match with the only man to have defeated him by this time, Paul Gonzales, 14-1, in El Paso, TX. It would be his fourth defense and he made it a short fight stopping his opponent in the second round on cuts.
Just 2 months later Orlando would knockout the USBA champion Eddie Rangel, 23-4-2, in 5 rounds in Saratoga Springs, New York, in his fifth title defense. After a non-title win he would give Hardy a re-match in Orlando’s home town of Laredo at the Civic Center Arena in May of 1991. Their previous fight was in the UK by split decision. He had Hardy down in the third round and stopped him in the eighth. It was his first return to Laredo since making his debut almost 7 years previously. Before the year was out he made defenses over the NABF champion Fernie Morales, 28-4, of Mexico, in Indio, CA, easily winning over 12 rounds. Unbeaten WBA world super flyweight champion from Japan Katsuya “Spanky-K” Onizuka was in camp with Orlando preparing for a defense of his own. Then at the end of 1991 he stopped British Commonwealth champion Ray Minus, 39-6-1, of the Bahamas, back in Laredo in 11 rounds. It was the third world title try for Minus.
In April of 1992 Orlando made his ninth title defense defeating Colombian Francisco Alvarez, 32-5-4, in Paris, France, over 12 rounds. In his tenth defense he defeated Filipino Samuel Duran, 36-7-1, stopping his 15 fight winning streak. In his eleventh defense he had a close fight with Clarence “Bones” Adams, 26-0-1, before stopping him in the eleventh round in France. All three judges had it 96-94 through 10 rounds. Adams would eventually become the WBA super bantamweight champ.
In Orlando’s twelfth defense in Houston a No Contest in the third round against South Africa’s Derrick Whiteboy, 33-3-1, who was on a 20 fight win streak. It was a clash of heads that caused a badly cut left eye of Orlando’s. The NC was later changed to a TD3. There would never be a re-match. Two fights later Whiteboy lost his South African title.
It would be 5 months before Orlando’s next defense, his thirteenth defense, easily defeating Colombian Juvenal “El Zulu” Berrio, 24-3, in South Africa over 12 rounds. In making his fourteenth defense he stopped Mexican Gerardo Martinez, 29-1, of San Jose, at the San Jose State Events Center in 4 rounds. In his previous fight Martinez defeated Eddie Croft, 18-0, for the WBC Continental Americas super bantamweight title.
In Orlando’s fifteenth defense he stopped Filipino Rolando Bohol, 34-13-3, in the fifth round at the Convention Center in South Padre Island, TX.In his sixteenth defense he defeated 1992 Olympian Sergio Reyes, 10-0, of Ft. Worth, TX, at Martin Field, Laredo, TX. Reyes was knocked down in the third round.
In January of 1995 Orlando attempted to move up to challenge for the WBA World super bantamweight title that Puerto Rico’s Wilfredo Vazquez, 41-6-2, was champion. It would be his ninth defense and he was on a 13 fight win streak. The fight was held at the Freeman Coliseum, in San Antonio with Orlando losing by split decision. The two judges that voted against him had it 116-115 and 115-113 while the judge who favored him had it 117-113. He actually had more points than Vazquez when you added them up. It dropped his record to 38-2-1.
In June Orlando couldn’t make the 118 bantamweight anymore so he came in at 135 scoring a second round knockout over Kino Rodriguez, 8-5-2 who came in at 126. In July defeated Johnny Lewus, 16-1, out of Chicago, IL, for the international Boxing Council Super bantamweight title over 12 rounds, in Stateline, NV. Two months later he defended against Danny Aponte, 14-0, of Terrytown, LA, stopping him in 7 rounds, at Biloxi, MS, putting him into retirement.
Two months later Orlando defended against Mexico’s Julio Cesar Portillo, 14-4-1, stopping him in the second round. He would then travel to MSG in New York taking on New York’s Junior Jones, 39-2, the former WBA world bantamweight champion in his third IBC defense and lose by split decision over 12 rounds.Jones would go onto win the WBO super bantamweight title at the end of the year stopping Marco Antonio Barrera’s unbeaten streak at 43-0.
In Orlando’s next fight he won the International Boxing Association featherweight title in a rematch with Sergio Reyes, 11-2, stopping him in 10 rounds, in Chiba, Japan. He would score a pair of stoppages in non-title bouts and in July of 1997 win a majority decision over Dominican Edwin “Lightning” Santana, 22-1-3, in Las Vegas.
Over the next 15 months Orlando would win three non-title bouts as a lightweight. He would move down to super featherweight in December of 1998 and lose at the legendary Blue Horizon, in Philadelphia, to Puerto Rico’s Richard DeJesus, 13-5, out of Wilmington, DE, by majority decision. It was the seventh win in eight fights at the Blue Horizon for DeJesus. The decision was controversial so they would have a rematch. It would be 6 months before they would have a rematch at the Blue with Orlando winning by stopping DeJesus in 6 rounds.
Orlando would end his career in his next fight in September of 1999 in a super featherweight fight losing to Frankie Toledo, 35-3-1, of Paterson, NJ, by split decision. Toledo would go onto win the IBF world featherweight title.
Orlando would end up with a 50-5-2 record with 37 knockouts and was never stopped in those 57 fights. He
won the IBF bantamweight title defending it 16 times. He also won the IBC super bantamweight and the IBA featherweight titles. He was 34 while his brother Gaby retired at age 31 having won both the WBA and WBO bantamweight world titles. All together their combined records were 98-13-3 with 73 knockouts.
“Gaby was a wonderful fighter and very talented. Orlando was the best fighter I worked with,” said Spagnola. Reid added, “Orlando and Gaby were both tremendous fighters. Orlando was the super real deal.”
More Boxing History
HBO PPV Round by Round Results: Canelo Wipes Out Liam Smith
HBO PPV Round by Round Results: Canelo Wipes Out Liam Smith
By: William Holmes
Canelo Alvarez (47-1-1) faced off against Liam Smith (23-0-1) in the main event of the night in the latest Pay Per View offering by Golden Boy Promotions and HBO.
AT&T Stadium in Arlington, Texas was the host site for tonight’s bout and was filled with mainly pro Canelo fans. Even though Canelo held a middleweight title, this bout was for Liam Smith’s WBO Junior Middleweight Title.
HBO hyped up their next Pay Per View offering by interviewing both Sergey Kovalev and Andre Ward before the singing of the national anthems.
The national anthem of the United Kingdom was sung first by Danny Walten. The national anthem of Mexico was sung second and was performed by Leonardo Aguilar. The national anthem of the United States was performed by Paula Deanda.
Liam Smith entered the ring to a mainly muted reaction from the crowd, and Canelo entered second to a loud ovation.
The announced attendance for tonight’s fight was 51,240.
The following is a round by round recap of tonight’s bout.
Canelo Alvarez (47-1-1) vs. Liam Smith (23-0-1); WBO Junior Middleweight Title
Canelo and Smith come out to the center of the ring and Smith immediately throws a jab to the body of Canelo. Canelo throws a jab to the body and head of Smith. Canelo with a jab and follows it with a left hook. Canelo with a good right to the body and follows it with a jab. Canelo lands a double jab. Both boxers land a jab at the same time. Canelo lands a good counter right uppercut and follows it with a left hook. Canelo with a jab to the body and head again. Canelo lands a jab to the nose of Smith. Canelo lands another jab to the face of Smith. Smith lands a short jab of his own. Canelo lands three jabs in a row. Smith misses with a wild right hook, and Canelo answers with a two punch combination that forces Smith to stumble backwards. Canelo digs a good body shot into the ribs of Smith. Canelo connects with two more hard hooks to the body. Canelo is throwing a high volume of punches already.
Canelo goes right back to his jab, and then lands several hard combinations to the body and head. Smith not really throwing much at Canelo. Canelo lands another hook to the ribs of Smith. Smith lands a right hook upstairs but misses with his follow up punches. Canelo lands a double jab, and Smith sticks a jab in the face of Canelo. Canelo blocks a hook from Smith, but Smith lands a right hand over the top afterwards. The crowd is loudly chanting for Canelo. Canelo is really putting his combinations together well off of his jab. Canelo with another hard right hand to the body of Smith. Smith connects with two hooks to the body when Canelo’s back was to the ropes, but Canelo quickly backs out. Canelo has a small cut near his left eye. Smith lands a right hand to the cut of Canelo. Smith barely misses with a three punch combination.
10-9 Canelo; 20-18 Canelo.
Canelo opens up the third round with a good left hook to the body, but Smith is starting to open up more and threw several punches in response. Smith lands a good jab on Canelo. Canelo briefly had Smith with his back to the ropes but didn’t land anything of note. Canelo connects with a good left uppercut to the chin and follows it with a right to the body. Good right hook to the body right uppercut to the chin combination by Canelo. Canelo lands a jab, and follows it with a hard right hook to the head. Canelo opening up with some good combinations. A left uppercut may have stunned Smith. Smith lands a hard left hook right hook combination. Canelo does not seem to be concerned about the power of Smith. Smith lands two good jabs on Canelo. Smith lands a good counter uppercut on Canelo after Canelo misses with a wild shot. Closer round for Smith.
10-9 Canelo; 30-27 Canelo.
Canelo is showing good head movement at the start of the fourth round. Canelo digs in a hard body shot to the body of Smith. Good crisp jab by Canelo. Smith lands a good body shot, but Canelo answers with four hard punches. Smith lands a right cross. Canelo is warned to keep his punches up. Canelo with a quick two punch combination. Canelo jabs to the body and head of Smith. Canelo again with a good right hook to the body. Smith has a small cut above his left eye. Canelo lands a jab in the middle of Smith’s face. Smith lands a hard right hook when in tight. Canelo’s back is against the ropes and he backs into a corner. Smith with a body head combination, and Canelo answers with a combination of his own. Smith lands two hard hooks on Canelo.
10-9 Canelo; 40-36 Canelo.
Canelo with a quick double jab. Canelo takes a jab to the body. Smith showing his jab more often. Canelo lands a good right hook upstairs and follows it with a hard right uppercut. Canelo with a three punch combination to the body and head of Smith. Smith lands a right to the body and head of Canelo. Smith with a right hook to the body and right to the head of Canelo. Canelo lands a lead left hook and then a lead right uppercut. Smith looks like he has a little more pep in his step than Canelo. Canelo lands a right cross to the chin of Smith. Good body shot by Canelo. Two jabs in a row for Canelo. Smith backs Canelo up to the ropes and digs in several hooks to the body and several shots to the head of Canelo. Close round.
10-9 Smith; 49-46 Canelo
Canelo is in a more aggressive stance. Smith lands two quick jabs. Canelo misses with a wild right uppercut. Smith lands a good left hook to the head of Canelo. Smith lands a four punch combination on Canelo. Smith lands a hard left hook on Canelo. Canelo answers with a right uppercut and right hook. Smith is covering up though on those punches. Smith lands two jabs to the head of Canelo. Smith takes a right hook from Canelo. Smith lands a right uppercut and Canelo answers with one of his own. Smith sticks a jab in the face of Canelo. Smith has Canelo’s back against the ropes and lands some soft short jabs. Smith sticks another jab in the face of Canelo. Canelo is short with his jab. Smith has blood coming from his eye and gets warned for landing a punch during an attempted break. Canelo lands a good body shot. This round could have been scored for either boxer.
10-9 Canelo; 59-55 Canelo
Canelo is pressing the pace and lands a hard right hook to the side of Smith’s head. Smith sneaks in a right uppercut that partially connects. Canelo whizzes a right hook past the head of Smith. Smith has Canelo’s back against the ropes, but Canelo lands several short uppercuts. Canelo lands a four punch combination and sends Smith to the mat. Smith gets back before the count of ten. Canelo lands a right uppercut on Smith. Canelo lands a jumping left hook and is stalking Smith around the ring. Smith ties up with Canelo briefly. Canelo backs Smith up to the ropes and Smith holds on again. Smith eats a hard left hook from Canelo. Smith lands a good right cross. Canelo with two hard right hooks and a right uppercut to the chin of Smith. Smith was firing off combinations in Canelo’s direction at the end of the round.
10-8 Canelo; 69-63 Canelo
Canelo lands an early jab on Smith. Canelo connects with another jab and follows it with a lead left hook. Canelo lands a clean right cross on Smith. Canelo stabs two jabs in the body of Smith. Canelo barely misses with an uppercut, but lands two consecutive hooks to the head. Jab to the body by Canelo. Smith backs Canelo up to the ropes and throws some uppercuts and body shots in tight. Canelo jabs to the body and lands a right uppercut. Canelo is very effective with the jab to the body. Smith lands a short right hook and uppercut. Canelo lands two straight jabs to the head and two uppercuts. Canelo rips a hook to the body of Smith and Smith goes to the canvas grimacing in pain. Canelo lands another shot to the body and Smith is on his bike for the remainder of the round.
10-8 Canelo; 79-71 Canelo
Canelo starts of the ninth round as the more aggressive boxer. Smith lands two quick jabs. Canelo digs another hard right hook to the body and later a left hook. Smith barely misses with a right hook. Smith lands a body shot on Canelo and a left hook. Smith lands a quick jab on Canelo’s head, and Canelo answers with a hook to the body. Canelo traps Smith by the ropes and unleashes a combination on him. Smith misses with several shots when Canelo’s back is against the ropes. Canelo lands another vicious hook to the body of Smith and he goes down grimacing in pain.
The referee doesn’t bother to count and waives off the fight.
Canelo Alvarez wins by TKO at 2:28 of the ninth round.
Canelo was asked about Gennady Golovkin afterwards and he stated, ” I fear no one. I was born for this. And even though many people may not like it, I am the best fighter right now. About a month ago, we offered him twice or three times as much to make the fight, I didn’t want to say anything, because I respect all my rivals, but about a month ago we offered him twice or three times and he didn’t want to accept.”
HBO PPV World Championship Boxing Preview: Canelo vs. Smith, Monroe vs. Rosado
HBO PPV World Championship Boxing Preview: Canelo vs. Smith, Monroe vs. Rosado
By: William Holmes
On Saturday night AT&T Stadium, the home of the Dallas Cowboys, in Arlington, Texas will be the host site for HBO’s next pay per view offering.
Golden Boy Promotions will pit their superstar, Canelo Alvarez, against British boxer and WBO Junior middleweight champion Liam “Beefy” Smith. Most fight fans were hoping that Canelo would face Gennady Golovkin instead of Liam Smith, and view this fight as mismatch for Canelo.
Two former opponents for Gennady Golovkin, Gabriel Rosado and Willie Monroe Jr., will be fighting in the co-main event of the night. Highly rated prospects Joseph Diaz and Diego De La Hoya will fight on the televised portion of the undercard in matchups that they should win.
Photo Credit: Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions
The following is a preview of the main event and co-main event of the night.
Gabriel Rosado (23-9) vs. Willie Monroe Jr. (20-2); Middleweights
The co-main event of the night will be between two boxers that were stopped by Gennady Golovkin, but remain top contenders in the middleweight division.
Monroe is twenty nine years old and Rosado is thirty, so both boxers are in the middle of their prime years. Rosado will be about an inch and half taller than Monroe, but he will be giving up about two and a half inches in reach.
Rosado has the clear edge in power. Rosado has stopped thirteen of his opponents while Monroe has only stopped six. Monroe has the edge in amateur experience as he won the New York Golden Gloves and reached the finals in the Golden Gloves in 2007. Monroe is also the son of Willie Monroe and the great nephew of Willie the Worm Monroe. Rosado does not have any notable accolades as an amateur to mention.
Monroe has been slightly more active than Rosado in recent years. Monroe fought once in 2016, twice in 2015, and three times in 2014. Rosado has fought once in 2016, once in 2015, and two times in 2014.
Rosado’s record can be deceiving. He does have nine losses on his record and has only gone 2-3 in his past five fights, but his losses have come against some of the biggest names in boxing. He has defeated the likes of Joshua Clottey, Antonio Guiterrez, Charles Whittaker, Sechew Powell, Jesus Soto Karass, Ayi Bruce, and saul Roman. His losses have come to Gennady Golovkin, Peter Quillin, Jermell Charlo, David Lemieux, Alfredo Angulo, Fernando Guerrero, and Derek Ennis.
Rosado is a warrior, but he has been stopped four times in his career. He was able to capture the middleweight crown in Big Knockout Boxing (BKB) outside of his normal career of boxing.
Monroe has defeated the likes John Thompson, Brian Vera, Brandon Adams, Vitaliy Kopylenko, Donatas Bondorovas, and won the Boxcino tournament in 2014. His losses were to Darnell Boone and Gennady Golovkin.
Rosado is a live dog in every fight he enters into, and this Saturday is no different. He would be a bigger underdog if Willie Monroe was known for his power, but he’s not and Rosado can box. This should be a very competitive fight, but this writer sees Monroe winning a decision victory.
Liam Smith (23-0-1) vs. Canelo Alvarez (47-1-1); WBO Junior Middleweight Title
Canelo Alvarez holds the WBC World Middleweight Title but will bumping down to the junior middleweight division to face Liam Smith for his WBO Junior Middleweight Title. An argument could be made that even though Canelo holds a legitimate middleweight title, he has never faced an actual true middleweight, and has only faced blown up junior middleweights and welterweights.
Liam Smith has already gone on the record to state that there will be no fight if Canelo cannot make the 154 pound weight limit. However, there is little reason to believe that Canelo won’t make weight.
Saturday will be Canelo’s 50th fight as a professional, and that’s an impressive feat for someone who is only twenty six years old. Smith is two years older than Canelo, and will have a slight height advantage.
Even though Canelo has nearly double the number of fights of Smith and is two years younger, Smith has been more active than Canelo in the past two years. Smith fought four times in 2015 and twice in 2014, while Canelo has averaged two fights a year since 2012. It should also be noted that Smith has never fought outside of the United Kingdom.
Neither boxer has an overly impressive amateur background. Smith was a two time winner of the ABA Championships as an amateur and Canelo won the Junior Mexican National Boxing Championships as a young teenager, but neither competed in the Olympics or won any medals at an amateur world championship.
Canelo’s only loss in his career was to Floyd Mayweather Jr. His list of defeated opponents is impressive, and he has defeated the likes of Amir Khan, Miguel Cotto, James Kirkland, Erislandy Lara, Alfredo Angulo, Austin Trout, Shane Mosley, and Alfonso Gomez.
Smith has never been in the ring with someone of Canelo’s talent. Smith has defeated the likes of Pregrad Radosevic, Jimmy Kelly, John Thompson, and Zoltan Zera.
The one major positive that jumps out at you when looking at Smith’s resume is that he has stopped his past eight opponents. Canelo has stop three of his past five opponents. However, Smith only has thirteen knockouts on his record while Canelo has thirty three.
Again, this will be the first time that Smith has fought outside of the United Kingdom and this fight will be held in Texas which has a large population of Mexican boxing fans. The fans will be hostile towards Smith, which is something he is not used to, and Canelo is the type of high quality opponent that Smith has never seen before.
The stars are aligned for an easy Canelo victory.
Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Smith, Mayweather, Roy Jones Jr., Jackson, Guerrero, and more…
Boxing Insider Notebook: Canelo, Smith, Mayweather, Roy Jones Jr., Jackson, Guerrero, and more…
By: William Holmes
The following is the Boxing Insider notebook for the week of July 12th to July 19th, covering the comings and goings in the sport of boxing that you might have missed.
Photo Credit: Hogan Photos/Golden Boy Promotions
Canelo vs. Smith Officially Announced for AT&T Stadium
Former two-division world champion Canelo Alvarez (47-1-1, 33 KOs) and WBO Junior Middleweight World Champion Liam “Beefy” Smith (23-0-1, 13 KOs) kicked off the two-city international press tour at AT&T Stadium ahead of their world championship showdown on Saturday, Sept. 17. Located in Arlington, Texas, AT&T Stadium is home to one of the most iconic and successful sports teams in history – the Dallas Cowboys, and will host the big event between Canelo and Smith on Mexican Independence Day weekend, Sept. 17. Canelo vs. Smith will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT on Sept. 17. The heavy-handed combatants will head next to London, England for a press conference at The Landmark Hotel on July 20, 2016.
Oscar De La Hoya, chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions, led those present at today’s press conference in a moment of silence to honor the victims of the recent tragedy affecting the Dallas Police Department and Dallas Area Rapid Transit officers.
Below is what the fighters, their teams, promoters and Dallas Cowboys Owner Jerry Jones had to say at today’s press conference:
CANELO ALVAREZ, Former Two-Division World Champion:
“I had to work for my birthday, so I’m here to work. I’m very happy to be back in Texas again, in this beautiful stadium. I’m going to take this fight seriously and prepare like always. I know how I’m going to have to train. I like to give the fans a great fight, and that is what I will prepare for.”
LIAM “BEEFY” SMITH, WBO Junior Middleweight World Champion:
“I am very excited, I have asked for a top name for a very long time and when Canelo’s name came to the table it was an automatic ‘yes.’
“We are coming very prepared for this fight, and I’m coming to win.”
OSCAR DE LA HOYA, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy Promotions:
“Everything is bigger in Texas, and here we are the iconic AT&T Stadium, where we have two world champion fighters known for knocking out opponents in the ring with their strength and power. Come Mexican Independence weekend, former two-division world champion Canelo Alvarez will face the undefeated WBO junior middleweight world champion Liam “Beefy” Smith for his title.
“Here you have Liam Smith, an aggressive, relentless fighter. His previous eight opponents have fallen before the final bell. And then you have Canelo Alvarez, who is only getting more and more powerful with each of his devastating victories.
“Both of these fighters come from boxing families. Boxing is in their blood. To Canelo and Smith, fighting is a family tradition and with that comes a responsibly to live up to the family name. That said, both of them will come to the ring on September 17 to wage a war: for Canelo, to claim a new title as the WBO junior middleweight world champion and for Smith, to successfully defend his WBO title once again and make a name for himself in the U.S.
“While the fights will be the highlight of the weekend–Golden Boy, Jerry Jones and the Cowboys will bring the people a week full of fun activities that fans will enjoy for the entirety of fight week.”
Floyd Mayweather States that the Baton Rouge Killer is Not a Member of The Money Team
Floyd Mayweather says Gavin Long — who went on a cop-killing rampage in Baton Rouge on Sunday — is NOT affiliated with The Money Team … despite the fact he posted several videos sporting TMT gear.
“Gavin Long is not member of TMT by any means,” Floyd’s rep tells TMZ Sports.
“Floyd doesn’t want the TMT brand to be affiliated with the violent act Gavin has caused and neither Floyd nor anyone else from TMT knows him.”
“He is just a random guy who supported the brand but we don’t support him and what he did to those police officers.”
Officials say Long shot 6 officers — killing 3 of them — during an apparent anti-cop shooting spree.
It was later discovered that Long had previously posted several ranting videos on YouTube — and wore a TMT hat and had a TMT sticker on his chair in some of the clips.
Roy Jones Jr. Considering Five Fight Farewell Tour
47-year-old Roy Jones Jr. says he’s finally ready to hang ’em up … but he wants to go out by flooring 5 more fighters.
The boxing legend tells TMZ Sports he was inspired by the way Kobe Bryant called it quits this year — and says he’d really like a farewell tour of his own.
In fact, RJJ says he wants to line up 5 more fights before the end of the year … but he wants to take on guys he KNOWS he can beat.
“Five guys you should be able to deal with and call it a day.”
Roy says nothing’s in stone yet … but he’s definitely considering it.
Robert Guerrero to Face David Peralta
Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (33-4-1) taking on David Emanuel Peralta (25-2-1) on Saturday, August 27 (9:00-11:00pm ET/PT) from the Honda Center in Anaheim, CA.
Robert Guerrero is among the biggest names in boxing today, having fought the sport’s marquee names like Floyd Mayweather. A former world champion in multiple weight classes, he owns signature victories over Andre Berto and Joel Casamayor. But now Guerrero is on a quest to return to the top of the welterweight division beginning with this matchup on August 27. He must defeat the hard-hitting Argentinian slugger David Emanuel Peralta to see his dreams of sitting atop the division realized once again.
The tripleheader also features all-action slugger Alfredo Angulo (24-5)taking on battle-tested Freddy Hernandez (33-8)in a battle of Mexican brawlers. A fan favorite in Southern California, Angulo enters this fight coming off of two knockout victories and he will look to make it three in a row when he steps into the ring on August 27. A veteran of many exciting 154-pound contests, Angulo is looking to continue to make noise in the middleweight division against Hernandez, who has won his last three fights heading into this showdown.
Rounding out the night of televised fights is 2012 U.S. Olympian Terrell Gausha (18-0) putting his undefeated record on the line against the Bronx’s Steve Martinez (16-2). Fighting out of Cleveland, Gausha has risen up the rankings with five victories in 2015 and a seventh round stoppage of Orlando Lora in April. Now he will test himself against against the dangerous Martinez, who has recorded knockouts in 13 of his 16 victories.
Jerry Odom to Face Julius Jackson
Prospect Jerry Odom steps up to face Julius Jackson in a matchup of super middleweights next Friday, July 22 on ShoBox: The New Generation live on SHOWTIME (10 p.m. ET/PT) from Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Conn.
The hard-hitting Odom (13-2-1, 12 KOs) replaces Ronald Ellis, who pulled out of the bout on Thursday with a right hand injury.
Odom was deep in training and looking to bounce back from a controversial draw with Ellis in February on ShoBox when he received the opportunity to face Jackson (19-1, 15 KOs). Jackson is the older brother of John and son of former two-division world champion Julian “The Hawk” Jackson.
“I have been training for a few fights that fell through. I’m in shape and ready to go,” Odom said. “When my team got the call we decided it was the right decision to take this opportunity.
“My power will be a big factor. Jackson has faced punchers before, but he hasn’t faced one like me. This is a great opportunity, and I will put on a show next Friday.”
Undefeated top 10-ranked super bantamweight Adam “Mantequilla” Lopez (15-0, 7 KOs) faces Roman Ruben Reynoso (18-1-1, 7 KOs) in the 10-round main event. In an eight round lightweight bout, O’Shaquie Foster (10-1, 7 KOs) meets Rolando Chinea (12-1-1, 6 KOs).
The July 22 ShoBox telecast marks the 15-year anniversary of the celebrated prospect developmental series.
Miguel Flores to Face Ryan Kielczweski on August 12th for the PBC
Undefeated rising contender Miguel Flores (20-0, 9 KOs) takes on exciting once-beaten featherweight contender Ryan Kielczweski (25-1, 7 KOs) in the 10-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN and ESPN Deportes Friday, August 12 from Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, New York.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT and features a welterweight showdown between unbeaten contender Bryant Perrella (14-0, 13 KOs) and Cuban Olympian Yordenis Ugas (15-3, 7 KOs) in 10-rounds of action.
“Fighting on ESPN is incredible because you know that fans from all around the world will be tuning in,” said Flores. “My opponent is a very skilled fighter, so I’ll be at my best when we step in the ring on August 12. Expect me to go to war and bring a lot of action to those who will be watching.”
“It’s always exciting to be fighting on ESPN, especially in the main event,” said Kielczweski. “Training is going well and I’ve been traveling around to get great sparring. I don’t know much about Flores other than that he’s undefeated for a reason. If I perform on August 12 hopefully something big will come next that leads me towards a title. It’s going to be an exciting night and an electric fight.”
David Benavidez to Face Denis Douglin on August 5th
Undefeated rising contender David “El Bandera Roja” Benavidez (15-0, 14 KOs) is set to face super middleweight contender Denis Douglin (20-4, 13 KOs) in the 10-round main event of Premier Boxing Champions on ESPN and ESPN Deportes Friday, August 5 live from the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT with exciting lightweight contender Alejandro “El Charro” Luna (20-0, 15 KOs) taking on Ireland’s Stephen “The Rock” Ormond (21-2, 11 KOs) in a 10-round attraction.
“We never stopped training after my last fight,” said Benavidez. “We went right back into camp and I’m already in fighting shape. Douglin is a tough southpaw. We’ll start looking at tape and see what kind of holes he has. I’ll start with the jab and break him down. We’re working hard towards bigger and bigger fights. This is going to be a great night of action.”
“I plan on applying pressure and making Benavidez adjust to my style,” said Douglin. “He’s a tall, strong fighter, but he doesn’t use his height. He’s one-dimensional, but he’s very good at what he does. He doesn’t have the experience to deal with my style. I am stepping in with an undefeated fighter but he will leave the ring with a loss.”