Boxing Ledger's Archives

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

Peter Manfredo, Jr. Returns This Friday vs. Veteran Slugger Daniel Edouard On ESPN2's "Friday Night Fights" From Key West, Florida; Hot Prospect Edwin Rodriguez Steps In With Pryor, Jr. In The Co-Feature


(January 11, 2010 – New York, NY)

The middleweight division takes center stage this Friday, January 14, when ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights returns to Mallory Square in Key West, FL for a night of red hot action. In the main event, former star of The Contender and top-ten ranked Peter Manfredo, Jr. (36-6, 2 KOs) looks to position himself for another crack at a world title against the rugged veteran, Daniel Edouard (23-3, 14 KOs).  

In the co-feature contest, one of the hottest prospects in all of boxing, super middleweight Edwin Rodriguez (17-0, 13 KOs) faces the toughest test in his career and the son of a legend, Aaron Pryor, Jr. (15-2, 11 KOs). 

The Key West showdowns will be promoted by DiBella Entertainment and DEJ Promotions. The show will be televised LIVE on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, and ESPN3.com.


“There is nothing that warms the soul in the dead of winter like great boxing, and there is no better place for it than Key West,” said Lou DiBella, the President of DiBella Entertainment. “Manfredo and Edouard will step into the ring on January 14 knowing only one will leave it as a viable title contender, and Edwin Rodriguez will likely face adversity that he has never faced before. I am excited to be teaming up with DEJ Promotions for this memorable night of action.”

“Peter Manfredo vs. Daniel Edouard top off a very exciting card; Edwin Rodriguez and Aaron Pryor, Jr. should generate a night of great entertainment for the avid boxing fans,” said Dave Johnson, the President of DEJ Promotions. “I am ecstatic to be putting on this show with DiBella Entertainment, and I am confident that we will have fight fans talking.”


Manfredo, 30, is marking a decade as one of boxing’s most exciting attractions. Best known for his stint on season one of the reality show The Contender, Manfredo has stepped in with some of the biggest names in boxing, including Sergio Mora (twice), Alfonso Gomez (twice), Jeff Lacy, and the recently retired, Joe Calzaghe. His tenth round stoppage of Angel Hernandez this past May is considered a Fight of the Year candidate.

Edouard, 30, is well known to fight fans for his showdowns with the likes of Dorian Beaupierre, Willie Gibbs, and Jermain Taylor. His fourth round stoppage over Gibbs in 2004, where both men hit the deck, was named ESPN’s Fight of the Year. Edouard is coming off a split decision loss to Alfonso Mosquera, but had won his previous five fights before that.
Rodriguez, 25, is one of the fastest rising prospects in all of boxing. A former amateur standout, Rodriguez has won eight of his last nine bouts by knockout, including his last fight, a nationally televised destruction of James “Buddy” McGirt, Jr., which netted him the WBC USNBC Super Middleweight title.

Pryor, Jr., 32, has more than just his last name going for him. Despite being the son of Hall of Famer, Aaron “The Hawk” Pryor, Junior has begun carving out his own niche in the sweet science. In his last bout on national television, he thoroughly dominated Dyah Davis (son of former world champion Howard Davis) over eight one-sided rounds. Pryor is riding a three fight win streak going into his showdown with Rodriguez.

Balker’s Ready For London Showdown With Okoth On January 22nd

TKO Box Office
Graham Earl Promotions
Presents
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Mitchell Balker vs. Nick ‘The Ox’ Okoth
22nd January 2011 @ York Hall, London

 Mitchell Balker  sparring with Leon ‘Solid’ Williams at the Ultrachem TKO Gym in London

 Mitchell Balker

London Tuesday 11th January 2011

Exciting London based Dutch Cruiserweight Mitchell Balker is set for his second British outing, since signing with Johnny Eames’ Ultrachem TKO Boxing Gym team last year, when he comes face to face with Battersea’s super tough ‘Fighting Fireman’ Nick ‘The Ox’ Okoth at the Graham Earl promoted ‘CAPITAL PUNISHMENT’ event at York Hall in Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 22nd January 2011.

Balker, who prior to moving to London had an unbeaten three fight record, will be looking to put the disappointment of losing to British championship prospect Matty Askin, when the fight was controversially stopped during a wild exchange that see Balker visibly shake Askin, on his maiden UK outing in November.

However Balker’s opponent on the 22nd January is no walk over, as the ever popular former Commonwealth and IBO Inter-Continental Champion Darren ‘Raging Bull’ Corbett can attest. Back in April last year Okoth shot to fame following his gritty all action performance to overcome Corbett at the Sky televised Prizefighter - Cruiserweights 2 to rightfully earn a showdown with eventual tournament winner Jon Lewis Dickinson in the final.

Following a sparring session with Southern Area Cruiserweight champ Leon ‘Solid’ Williams, at the Ultrachem TKO Gym in Canning Town, Balker spoke briefly about his preparations for his upcoming fight with Okoth. “I don’t know not too much about Nick. He fought Ali (TKO gym mate Ali Adams) not long ago, but other than that not know much about him.

Training going very good. After my first fight in the UK I was straight in the gym so I’m in shape like always.

I’ve been sparring Leon (Williams). Sparring has been going really, really well. I’m in great shape. Tip top condition so sparring going very well.

I feel really strong, very confident. I can’t wait. It’s going to be a great fight”

Mitchell Balker versus Nick ‘The Ox’ Okoth will be on the undercard of Paul Morby vs. Daniel ‘The Slick’ Cadman BBBofC Southern Area Super Middleweight title showdown at the Graham Earl promoted ‘Capital Punishment’ event at York Hall, Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 22nd January 2011.

Graham Earl has put together a top class support card for the Morby vs Cadman title fight that includes the third outing for Ultrachem TKO’s exciting Welterweight Danny ‘Cassius’ Connor, who is set to face Graham Earl’s nineteen year old protégé Terry Holmes.

Also on the card are British Masters Light Welterweight Champion Jay ‘The Isle Of Wight Assassin’ Morris, Hove’s unbeaten Light Heavyweight Navid Iran, unbeaten Middleweight Joe ‘The Belfast Banger’ Hillerby, Leicester’s Super Middleweight Jahmaine ‘ Smasher’ Smyle, Balker’s Ultrachem TKO gym mate Daryl Setterfield and Miami, Florida exile, now living in Luton, Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Oshinronde all against yet to be named opponents.

Tickets, priced £35 (unreserved) and £50 (ringside) are available on-line now at www.tkoboxoffice.com - or for further information call 07960 850645.

Former World Champ Graham Earl Guests On The Steve Bunce Show This Thursday

TKO Box Office
Graham Earl Promotions
Presents
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
22nd January 2011 @ York Hall, London
 Graham Earl with Terry Holmes and Manny Oshunrinde

London - Tuesday 11th January 2011

Former WBU Lightweight Champion of the World, now turned Boxing promoter, Graham Earl is to be a guest on Steve Bunce’s Boxing Hour, on BBC Radio London 94.9 between 8pm and 9pm this coming Thursday, 13th January 2011, to talk about his upcoming show ‘CAPITAL PUNISHMENT’ which takes place at York Hall, in Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 22nd January 2011.

During his illustrious career Graham won virtually every domestic title going, including the Southern Area, British, Commonwealth and of course the WBU World title. Whilst the later may have been Graham’s crowning glory it was his next fight, against Michael ‘The Great’ Katsides for the interim WBO belt, that Graham is most fondly remembered for.

Graham, always a crowd favourite due to his ever gutsy performances, showed he had the heart the size of a Lion’s after going to war with Katsides right from the opening bell. Graham was sent to canvas twice in the final 30 seconds of first round but on both occasions was back on his feet to resume the toe-to-toe punch fest.

Round two was more of the same, again Graham was sent to the canvas but as before Graham was back on his feet quickly. Some twenty seconds or so later Graham’s trainer Johnny Eames threw the towel into the ring as Graham, with his back against the ropes, absorbed massive salvo after massive salvo from Katsides.

Referee Mickey Vann picked the towel up and threw it back, just seconds later it was Katsides turn to take the count after Graham lets rip with a massive right hand which turned the Australian’s legs to jelly. Following the count Graham marched forward and pressured Katsides, who was clearly was in trouble, for the rest of the round.

Round three see Graham revert to boxing rather than locking horns with Katsides, following a series of lows blows from Katsides, which eventually cost the Aussie a point deduction, Graham easily secured the round by a clear 10-8 points margin.

Round four was just plain brutal, Katsides stepped up his attack but Graham once again showed his resolve by letting rip with massive rights and combinations of equal venom.

Graham again reverted to his boxing in the fifth round and put on a magnificent performance. In the final twenty seconds of the round Katsides backed Graham into a corner and started to let rip with bomb after bomb, Graham ducked and weaved before letting rip with massive right hands of his own.

Unfortunately for Graham, even after putting on such a solid performance in the fifth, his team felt he was taking far too many shots and retired him in the corner.

Graham may have lost the fight but he won the hearts and minds of boxing fans the world over with his gutsy never say die performance that night. The fight quite rightly was declared the ‘Fight of the Year’.

When Graham fought you were guaranteed value for your money and now he has turned his attention to promoting nothing has changed, his ‘Capital Punishment’ event which is headlined by the much anticipated Southern Area Super Middleweight title fight between Paul Morby and Daniel ‘The Slick’ Cadman and is supported by a top class undercard.

Speaking earlier today Graham Earl said, “It’s always an honour to be on Buncey’s show.

Steve is the voice of British Boxing and his shows are always entertaining. I’m really looking forward to being on his show this Thursday.”

Final word has to go to the show’s host Steve Bunce who said, “In addition to Graham I’ve got Willie Casey on the show, Jimmy Batten from the 70s and 80s and the last interview with Gary Mason.

It's the original and still the best - it covers the lot: Million-pound fights, down and out boxers, new promoters, old promoters, cranks, unknown amateurs, fruitcakes, world champions, legends, lunatics and the best from boxing every single week. It has broadcast every single Thursday since Jan 7th 2010!"

Steve Bunce’s Boxing Hour goes out on BBC Radio London every Thursday between 8-9pm on BBC London 94.9, online live on BBC iPlayer.

Tickets for the Graham Earl promoted CAPITAL PUNISHMENT at York Hall, Bethnal Green in London on Saturday 22nd January 2011 are priced £35 (unreserved) and £50 (ringside) and are available on-line now at www.tkoboxoffice.com - or for further information call 07960 850645

Monday, January 10, 2011

Connor Says, “I’m Gonna Knock Holmes Out”

TKO Box Office
Graham Earl Promotions
Presents
CAPITAL PUNISHMENT
Danny ‘Cassius’ Connor Vs. Terry Holmes
22nd January 2011 @ York Hall, London


London - Monday 10th January 2011

Sutton’s Danny ‘Cassius’ Connor intends to start  2011 of with a bang after a fairly disappointing end to 2010, following the cancellation of Bruce Baker’s ‘Christmas Punch’ event due to the extreme snow storms that battered Surrey in December.

Connor’s first outing of the year sees him up against Graham Earl’s protégé Terry Holmes at the former World Champion boxer turned promoter’s ‘Capital Punishment’ show, headlined by Paul Morby’s defense of his Southern Area Super Middleweight title against Daniel ‘The Slick’ Cadman, at the York Hall in Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 22nd January 2011.

Following a brutal sparring session with Sam Standing at Johnny Eames’ Ultrachem TKO Boxing Gym in Canning Town, ‘Cassius’ took a little time to talk about his upcoming showdown with Holmes. “I’m up against a guy called Terry Holmes, from Stevenage.

He’s a traveling kid so he’s bred into boxing. He’s going to be a tough come forward type and he’s supposed to be a bit of a good boxer who likes to mix it up a bit, but then again I can mix it up. I can fight just as good as him, if not better.

He’s 1 and 0, but he beat Johnny Greaves, who’s a bit of a journeyman. No disrespect to Johnny Greaves but we all know what journeymen are there for.

I’m not a journeyman I am on my way up and this is going to be my year so this is the start of something big and I’m taking him out.

I’ve been sparring Sam Standing, he’s another pro that’s just turned over. Been doing a little bit with Ricky Boylan, I’ve also been doing my sprints and that with him.

I’ve also been sparing with Southern Area champ Ben Murphy, he’s an experienced pro who can really bring me on. He knows all the tricks of the trade.

It’s the best sparring you can get so everything is going brilliant and I can’t wait to get in there and show everyone what I am about with this fight.

It’s gonna be a stoppage. I’m not messing about I’m just gonna knock him out. I’m going to start the year in style.”

Danny ‘Cassius’ Connor versus Terry Holmes will be on the undercard of Paul Morby vs. Daniel ‘The Slick’ Cadman BBBofC Southern Area Super Middleweight title showdown at the Graham Earl promoted ‘Capital Punishment’ event at York Hall, Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 22nd January 2011.

Graham Earl has put together a top class support card for the Morby vs Cadman title fight that includes the first London outing for Ultrachem TKO’s highly exciting Dutch Cruiserweight prospect Mitchell Balker, who is set for a baptism of fire when he faces Battersea’s super tough ‘Fighting Fireman’ Nick Okoth, who was runner up at the exceptional Sky televised Prizefighter - Cruiserweights back in April last year.

Also on the card are British Masters Light Welterweight Champion Jay ‘The Isle Of Wight Assassin’ Morris, Hove’s unbeaten Light Heavyweight Navid Iran, unbeaten Middleweight Joe ‘The Belfast Banger’ Hillerby, Leicester’s Super Middleweight Jahmaine ‘ Smasher’ Smyle, Danny Connor’s Ultrachem TKO gym mate Daryl Setterfield and Miami, Florida exile, now living in Luton, Emmanuel ‘Manny’ Oshinronde all against yet to be named opponents.

Tickets, priced £35 (unreserved) and £50 (ringside) are available on-line now at www.tkoboxoffice.com - or for further information call 07960 850645.

Photo Credits: Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro

Danny "Cassius" Connor and Sam Standing

Danny "Cassius" Connor sparring with Sam Standing at the Ultrachem TKO Gym in London

Friday, January 7, 2011

Contracts Sent To Mabuza




Kathy Duva, CEO Main Events, confirmed, "Contracts have been emailed to Kaizer Mabuza's promoter, Branco Milenkovic. The contract specifies the Judah - Mabuza IBF Jr. Welterweight title fight will be held March 5th."

According to the rules of the IBF purse bid that Main events won last week, Mabuza has two weeks from day of the purse bid to sign the contract. Duva expects the executed contracts back by next Thursday.

It has been confirmed the fight will be the inaugural event for the Amerihealth Pavilion at Prudential Center, Newark, NJ.

Kaizer Mabuza of Johannesburg, South Africa has a record of 23-6-3, 14 KO's, Zab Judah, Brooklyn, NY, 40-6, 27 KO's.

More details to come. 

BERNARD HOPKINS TO APPEAR ON ESPN's FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS SEASON OPENER TONIGHT

 The Future Hall of Famer Will Discuss Coming Year and Announcement of WBC Mandated Rematch With Jean Pascal

Philadelphia, PA (January 7)...Its never "out with the old and in with the new" when referring to future Hall of Famer Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins, as the two-division, two-decade fighting pugilist ended the year with an old fashion ass-whooping of young champion Jean Pascal and tonight will appear via satellite in the season opener of ESPN Friday Night Fights (10 p.m. ET on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes in Spanish and ESPN3.com). The taped-to-air interview, conducted by ESPN anchor Brian Kenny, takes place just a week shy of The Executioner's 46th birthday which he will celebrate January 15.

In addition to talking about his 2010 year-end performance that led to a controversial draw with Pascal, he will also express his feelings on Thursday's announcement that the WBC is mandating a rematch between the two.

"I think the WBC just gave me an early birthday present," said Hopkins. "They've done the right thing and are not going to let Pascal run from me again like he did in the ring during our fight.  I will show him and the rest of the world that those belts should have been mine the first time around."

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Red Hot Dibella Entertainment Prospects Edwin Rodriguez & Marcus Johnson Collect Year End Recognition With An Eye Towards The Future

(January 5, 2011 – New York, NY) Recently, the name of DiBella Entertainment’s grand champion Sergio Martinez has been turning up left and right, as publication after publication name their 2010 Fighter of the Year. But also getting some ink are two young super middleweights in the DiBella Entertainment (“DBE”) stable: Edwin “La Bomba” Rodriguez (17-0, 13 KOs) and Marcus “Too Much” Johnson (20-0, 15 KOs), as they have both been recognized as top prospects to keep an eye on in 2011 by various media outlets.

Rodriguez was active in 2010, going 4-0 with each of his wins coming by way of knockout. He made his debut on ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights in March with a first round knockout of normally rugged veteran George Armenta, and then made his ShoBox debut in April with a six round drubbing of Kevin Engel. Both those wins came via body shot. He closed the year by capturing the WBC USNBC title with a ninth round stoppage of James McGirt, Jr. on ShoBox.

“Receiving these honors validates the hard work I put in at the gym,” said Rodriguez, who returns to the ring next Friday night against Aaron Pryor, Jr. on Friday Night Fights. “To have guys like Dan Rafael and George Kimball write the things they have about me is humbling and it only makes me want to do more.”

Johnson fought twice in the year, both on Showtime’s ShoBox series. In April, he decisively beat previously unbeaten Derek Edwards, winning a twelve-round decision. He followed up that performance with an impressive third round stoppage on hard-nosed Kevin Engel in November.

“This is pretty exciting,” said Johnson. “I am looking forward to this upcoming year and making some more noise. I am going to keep striving and keep my record intact.”

Dan Rafael of ESPN.com listed both Rodriguez and Johnson in his annual prospects watch list, mentioning that Rodriguez “had an excellent year, going 4-0 and winning each fight by knockout” and cooed at Johnson’s size and skill, saying the Houston native “is built like a truck, puts his punches together well and has solid power.”

Hall of Fame boxing scribe George Kimball of the Boston Herald named Rodriguez the New England Fighter of the Year over former Olympian Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade and former Olympic alternate Danny O’Connor “on the basis of experience, level of competition, and the fact that as a sparring partner, in the past two months alone he made a pair of world champions — Froch and Jean Pascal — both say ‘Uncle.’”

Jake Donovan of BoxingScene.com listed Rodriguez in his honorable mention of top prospects, hinting that Rodriguez may have saved his best performance for last in his “one-sided beatdown of James McGirt Jr on Shobox.”

Peter Czymbor of 8countnews gave Rodriguez his New England Fighter of the Year honors, for living up to his billing despite being the “most hyped amateur turned pro to come out of the region in years.” He even suggested a showdown between Rodriguez and Johnson.

Cyzmbor also put Rodriguez on his list of the top prospects entering 2011, heaping high praise upon the unbeaten super middleweight saying, “He may be the best body puncher to come out of New England since ‘Irish’ Micky Ward.”

Bob Hanna of the New Bedford Times in Massachusetts also hailed Rodriguez as the New England Fight of the Year by virtue of certifying himself “as one of the top prospects in the country.”

Pepper Roach Talks Greatest Boxers Of All Time And Sparring Brother Freddie Roach

ANDRADE & GONZALES LOOKING TO START 2011 WITH A BANG, BOTH SET FOR ACTION FRIDAY NIGHT


 DEMETRIUS ANDRADE

On Friday night, one of boxing brightest star's, Providence, Rhode Island's Demetrius Andrade (11-0, 8KO's), will look to keep his unbeaten record in tact, and kick off what is expected by many to be a very big year for the 22-year-old southpaw, when he takes on Alberto Herrera (7-1-1, 5KO's) from the Cox Pavilion in Las Vegas, NV.  The bout, scheduled for eight rounds in the jr. middleweight divison, is promoted by Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing and Banner Promotions, and will kick off ESPN's 2011 "Friday Night Fight" series.

Also on the same night, not too far away in Fairfield, California, fellow undefeated prospect "Flawless" Brandon Gonzales (13-0, 10KO's) headlines Telefutura's fight-series season opener when he squares off against Lester Gonzalez (11-1-1, 6 KO's) in an eight round middleweight contest.  That bout is promoted by Star Boxing, in association with Let's Get It On Promotions on Don Chargin's card. 

"We are expecting huge years out of both Demetrius and Brandon," stated promoter Joe DeGuardia (DeGuardia co-promotes Andrade with Banner Promotions and Gonzales with Let's Get It On Promotions). "They are both very exciting and talented, and they are right on the cusp of moving from top prospects to legitimate top ten contenders in their respective divisions. As long as everything goes as planned, we will keep both of them very busy this year, and believe that they will both be ready to challenge for their first world titles by early 2012. They are both elite prospects, and we expect two stellar performances from them on Friday night."

Andrade, the 2007 Amateur World Champion and 2008 U.S. Olympian, went 3-0, 2 KO's in 2010, with two of those fights coming on the nationally televised Friday Night Fight series.  Gonzales, who was the 2006 Regional Golden Gloves Champion, ranked number one as a light heavyweight in the U.S. as an amateur in 2005 and went 4-0, 2 KO's.  

Both Andrade and Gonzales are expected to be tested somewhat on Friday night, with both taking on just once beaten foes.  Coincidentally, both Andrade and Gonzales' opponents are coming off their first career losses, both at the hands of Chris Chatman, who Andrade previously defeated in 2009.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Judah vs. Mabuza Update


According to reliable sources, Zab "Super" Judah (39-6, 26 KO's) vs. Kaizer Mabuza (23-6-3, 14 KO's) is likely to take place on Saturday, March 5, 2011 at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey. Currently, Mabuza is ranked # 1 by the IBF, while Judah is ranked # 2. The winner will be crowned IBF Junior Welterweight champion.

More details to follow.

Main Events Wins Judah - Mabuza Purse Bid

Totowa, NJ - Kathy Duva, Main Events CEO, announced their promotional firm won the purse bid held at IBF headquarters in East Orange, NJ, Thursday. The bid was for the right to hold the IBF's junior welterweight title fight between Zab Judah of Brooklyn, NY and Las Vegas, and South Africa's Kaizer Mabuza.

IBF Championships Chairman, Lindsay Tucker explained, "It is a 50-50 split of the earnings between the two fighters. Kaizer is ranked No. 1 by the IBF, and Judah is No. 2. Where the fight will be held is up to the winning bidder."


Judah (39-6, 26 KOs) is promoted by Main Events and his own firm Super Judah Promotions, and Branco Milenkovic, of South Africa, promotes Mabuza (23-6-3, 14 KOs).

Kathy Duva confirmed the fight will take place at Prudential Center in Newark, NJ, late February or early March this year as part of Main Events' Brick City Boxing Series.

"We are very happy that Zab has the opportunity to fight for the IBF Junior Welterweight title right here in New Jersey.  Winning this fight will put Zab right in the mix with the winner of Bradley-Alexander and Amir Khan." Duva elaborated, " Zab will work very hard to win this fight so that he will be one step closer to his ultimate goal of unifying all of the Junior Welterweight titles by the end of 2011!"

Monday, December 27, 2010

Floyd Mayweather, Jr. CAUGHT ON TAPE Losing It With Security Guard

Griffin-Mack IBF Eliminator tops “New Years Bash” January 7!


Minneapolis, MN (December 27, 2010) – USBA Light Heavyweight titlist Otis “Triple OG” Griffin and Yusaf Mack will battle it out to become IBF champion Tavoris Cloud’s mandatory challenger when they meet Friday, January 7 in the main event of “New Year’s Bash” from the Hyatt Regency Hotel in Minneapolis.
 
The card is presented by Seconds Out Promotions in association with Brewer Sports International and tickets start at $30.
 
Griffin, who won Oscar De La Hoya’s reality show “The Next Great Champ” owns a solid 23-6-2 pro ledger with 9 wins by way of knockout. The Sacramento, CA native has shared the squared circle with the likes of Danny Green, Jeff Lacy, Marcus Oliveira, Enad Licina and Jesse Brinkley. Last May, Griffin won the USBA belt with a shocking eighth round knockout of two time WBA Super Middleweight champion Byron Mitchell.
 
Mack, 28-3-2 (17 KO’s), is universally recognized as a player in the light heavyweight division that has fought some of the world’s best. Born and bred in the fighting city of Philadelphia, PA, Mack holds impressive victories title challengers Chris Henry and DeAndrey Abron while falling just short against Glen Johnson, Alejandro Berrio and Librado Andrade.
 
“This is going to be an outstanding fight and the fans are in for a real treat,” said Promoter Tony Grygelko of Seconds Out Promotions. “Both men have been in the ring with top fighters and the winner will be one victory away from becoming an elite light heavyweight.”
 
Griffin-Mack is scheduled for 12 rounds.
 
Unbeaten junior lightweight Ismail “Sharp Shooter” Mudendo will look to move to 8-0 with 7 knockouts when he faces an opponent to be named in the six round co-feature. The Minneapolis based Ugandan is regarded as one of the Midwest’s best prospects and at age 22 has plenty of time to develop.
 
Also appearing on the undercard will be former amateur star Javonte Starks  (4-0, 4 KO’s), Charles Meier (4-1-1, 2 KO’s), the pro debuts of Mellissa Littlejohn and Tristan McNutt in separate bouts and two mixed martial arts featuring local favorites.
 
Tickets can be ordered by going to soboxing.com or calling 612-807-5547.
 
Doors open at 7pm and the first bell is scheduled for 8pm.

Saturday, December 25, 2010

A Special Christmas Greeting from WBC Middleweight Champion and 2010 Fighter of the Year, Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez


Sincerely Boxing Friends:

2010 has been a wonderful year for myself, my team, and my family. I have made tens of thousands of new friends and proven myself as one of the greatest fighters in the world. I want to thank each and every one of you for the love and support you have shown me. I would do it in person if I could.
As important as boxing is to me, and it is a big part of my life, at this time let us remember that there is nothing more important than family, friends, and dignity. Let us also remember those less fortunate than ourselves and fight against unnecessary violence, particularly against women. 

I look forward to resuming my career in March at Madison Square Garden, and hope that all my friends will join me for a celebration of the best of boxing. I wish all of you un año de maravilla. Feliz Navidad por todos.
 
- Sergio "Maravilla" Martinez

Monday, December 20, 2010

Bernard Hopkins Speaks

Quebec City, CAN (December 20).....Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins knew going to Quebec, Canada could prove fatal for a history-making victory over Jean Pascal if the fight was close.  In fact, he knew this from his own experience when, almost 16 years to the date of Saturday night's robbery, he received a similar verdict in Quito, Ecuador on December 17, 1994 when he battled Segundo Mercado to a similar draw decision for his first-ever title challenge.  

The outcry from that fight led to an immediate rematch between Hopkins and Mercado, which took place April 29, 1995, less than five months from the original fight.  With fight stats from Saturday night clearly in his favor, as well as the majority of media reports and fan outcry backing Hopkins' assessment of the outcome, a rematch between Hopkins and Pascal should be scheduled immediately.   

"I knew if they could they take it from me they would, and now that I have had the chance to review the fight on tape, I clearly know I won that fight," said Hopkins. "Jean Pascal, his corner and all of the Canadians in the arena and on television know I won the fight too. The crowd was loud in the beginning, but the silence was deafening as I dominated Pascal from the middle rounds all the way to the end of the fight. After the last round, Pascal went back to his corner with his head and hands down.  I am sure he is still hanging his head today to think he let a 45-year-old man beat him up the way I did. If I were him, I would want to redeem myself and my reputation immediately after what happened Saturday night." 

For Hopkins, it was a brilliant performance in front of a sold out crowd at the Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec City, Canada, as well as for the millions watching on SHOWTIME® in the United States, on pay-per-view in Canada and around the world.  Complementing his argument for an immediate rematch are the statistics behind the bout, which reflect the pure genius of Hopkins' intense execution of his own game plan and his destruction of Pascal's. Hopkins threw a total of 445 punches, of which he landed 141 power shots, more than 50% of the 270 he threw.  Pascal threw 100 less punches than Hopkins with 353 total shots, but landed only 85 of the 196 power shots he threw. 

"Again, it is crazy to think that a 45-year-old fighter like myself threw and landed more punches than this so-called young gun, the current champion, and still I am not given the win," said Hopkins. "Watch the tape. The poor guy was running scared, winded and backing up from round six and on. He seemed to just be holding on for dear life.  But, he knows what happened in there and he has to live with it too. The film doesn't lie, but I bet he doesn't even watch the tape so he, and all his people around him, can tell him something other than the truth. He lost the fight."

Hopkins continued, "The whole thing is bad for boxing, bad for Pascal and especially bad for Canada.  Pascal knows he should do the right thing and fight me as soon as tomorrow."   

16 years earlier, Hopkins got his rematch and convincingly defeated the Ecuadorian to capture his first middleweight world championship.

"Pascal is a hard punching, young gun who gave it his all Saturday night," said Hopkins. "But he is 18 years younger than me and that speaks for itself. It showed Saturday night too by just getting a draw, which everyone knows is really a loss, against a 45-year-old man.  If this guy has a backbone and wants to walk around with any kind of dignity and self-worth, the only thing he can do is fight me again. If that was me, I know that is the only way I could really live with myself."

Sunday, December 19, 2010

Hopkins, Pascal Battle To A Majority Draw


Bernard "The Executioner" Hopkins (51-5-2, 1 NC, 32 KO's) and Jean Pascal (26-1-1, 16 KO's) fought to a twelve-round majority draw in front of 16,133 boisterous fans at the Pepsi Coliseum in Quebec City, Canada. As a result, Pascal retains his Ring Magazine, WBC and IBO Light Heavyweight titles. Official scores were 114 -112 (Steve Morrow) for Hopkins, 113-113 (Claude Paquette) and 114-114 (Daniel Van De Wielle). The Boxing Ledger had it scored 116-111 for Bernard Hopkins. Had Hopkins, 45, pulled off the victory, he would have been the oldest champion in boxing history, breaking George Foreman's record by 38 days. In 1994, Foreman kayoed Michael Moorer in the tenth round with a devastating right hand shot to win the heavyweight title.

Hopkins successfully scored with his right hand in the opening round. Then, Pascal, 28, connected with a solid counter left hook. Moments later, Pascal struck Hopkins with a right and he quickly held Pascal. After that, Pascal floored Hopkins with an overhand right that landed behind Hopkins' head. However, referee Michael Griffin ruled it a knockdown, which was the correct call because Hopkins was ducking as the punch landed.

In round two, Hopkins continued to score with his right hand and was the aggressor. As the bell rang to end the round, Pascal landed a wide left hook.

Pascal started round three by landing a sweeping left hook to Hopkins' head. Nevertheless, Hopkins managed to score with vicious left hooks to the champion's body. Suddenly, Hopkins struck Pascal in the head with a clean left hook. During a heated exchange, Pascal connected with a rock-solid left hook that landed on the left side of Hopkins' collarbone. Hopkins went down swiftly. Just as the bell sounded to end the round, Hopkins landed three late punches, ending with a left hook to Pascal's head. The crowd was so loud that many were unaware the bell had rung, including the referee.

From that point, Hopkins took full control of the fight.

In round four, Pascal landed a right as referee Michael Griffin attempted to break a clinch. After Pascal missed a left hook, Hopkins quickly countered with a left hook of his own, followed by a sharp left hook to Pascal's body. Hopkins momentarily went down resulting from a slip. Subsequently, Hopkins continued to strike Pascal in the body with well-timed left hooks, slowly wearing him down.

Hopkins exhibited a slightly higher work rate than Pascal in round five, repeatedly striking him in the body with fierce left hooks. Pascal briefly stunned Hopkins with a counter left hook - right uppercut combination. Hopkins answered in a flash with a series of rights and lefts that landed on Pascal's head. Pascal responded promptly with a lunging left hook, but Hopkins kept coming, firing and landing a powerful right to Pascal's body.

Hopkins had a very impressive sixth round, pushing Pascal back with punches from all angles. Hopkins, possessing the edge in hand speed, scored with a succession of rights and lefts to Pascal's body and head. At this point, it was the most clear-cut round Hopkins had won in the fight.

In the seventh round, Pascal displayed a minor abrasion under his right eye. Hopkins pursued Pascal, assaulting him with overhand rights and left hooks to the body as the crowd quieted down.

In the early moments of the eighth round, Hopkins landed an overhand right and immediately clinched with Pascal. After Hopkins connected with another right, Pascal landed a massive left hook, but Hopkins instantly
grimaced, letting Pascal know that the punch did not faze him. Soon after, Hopkins moved close and landed a left hook that was below the belt line, although there was no warning from the referee and Pascal did not complain.

Hopkins tallied with a left uppercut - right to the body to begin round nine. Hopkins temporarily dazed Pascal after he landed a flush overhand right. Afterward, Pascal struck Hopkins in the body with a right cross, but Hopkins caught him with a buzzing left hook simultaneously.

The tenth round was closer to score. Pascal tagged Hopkins with a firm right uppercut, while Hopkins kept finding the target, hitting Pascal with left hooks to the body and right crosses to the head. When Pascal connected, his shots were wild and never came in combination.

It appeared Pascal went down from a Hopkins right hand in round eleven, but referee Michael Griffin ruled Pascal had slipped. Hopkins continually got his punches off first, but Pascal was able to land some hard inside uppercuts during the round. After the round concluded, Pascal's corner was desperately telling him that he needed to go out and win the twelfth round.

As the twelfth round began, Hopkins went on the attack. Both men brawled intensely in close quarters, Pascal landing a right uppercut and Hopkins catching Pascal with a colossal left hook to the head. Hopkins, displaying a cut lip on the left side of his mouth, looked like the younger fighter, trading blow-for-blow with Pascal. Unfortunately, Hopkins did not receive the decision victory he had earned in the end, succumbing only because of erroneous judging.

Arthur Mercante, who refereed Joe Frazier - Muhammad Ali I among many other championship fights, believed that you scored a fight by deciding which fighter won two out of the three minutes in every round, awarding each minute to one of the fighters. That method usually led to a fighter clearly winning a round. Using Mercante's judging standard, if one was scoring the Hopkins - Pascal fight, there is absolutely no objective way to award more rounds for Pascal, simply because he did not win two out of the three minutes in more rounds than Hopkins. Also, Hopkins threw and landed more punches than Pascal, outworking him the majority of the bout.

The World Boxing Council may order Pascal to give Hopkins an immediate rematch, although Pascal could always relinquish the title and fight someone else. Assuming that occurred, Hopkins may be able to fight for a vacant WBC Light Heavyweight title in the near future against another fighter, gaining another well-deserved opportunity to set history. In the court of public perception, Hopkins won the fight easily. Sadly, that means little for Hopkins officially entering the record books as boxing's oldest man to win a major world title.

Other Results

Welterweights: Paulie Malignaggi TKO 6 against Michael Lozada

Super Middleweights: Peter Quillin KO 1 against Martin Desjardins

Welterweights: Kevin Bizier RTD 3 over Ronnie Warrior, Jr.

Lightweights: Pier Olivier Cote TKO 1 over Cesar Soriano

Heavyweights: Tyson Fury UD 8 versus Zack Page

Super Middleweights: Danny Jacobs TKO 5 versus Jesse Orta

Heavyweights: Eric Bahoeli UD 6 over Ruben Rivera

Middleweights: Mikael Zewski TKO 2 against Leonardo Rojas

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Mares, Agbeko Advance In Showtime's Bantamweight Tournament


Abner Mares (21-0-1, 13 KO's) won a twelve-round split decision over Vic "The Raging Bull" Darchinyan (35-3-1, 27 KO's). The victory places Mares in the finals of Showtime's Bantamweight Tournament, where he will face Joseph "King Kong" Agbeko, who defeated Yonnhy Perez by a twelve round unanimous decision in the main event. Mares won by 115-111 on Tom McDonough's scorecard, and 115-112 on Alan Krebs' scorecard. Judge Glen Hameda saw it 115-111 for Darchinyan.

Mares suffered a deep gash along his hairline on the left side of his head from an accidental headbutt in round one. Mares scored with a right cross - left uppercut combination in round two, but was floored by Darchinyan's counter left. It was the first time Mares was floored as a professional, and he bounced right back up.

After Darchinyan landed his left hand numerous times throughout the first two rounds, Mares stepped up his punch output in the third round, landing a right to Darchinyan's body. Mares was aggressive, utilizing his left jab with blood pouring down his face from the cut. Mares also sustained a minor cut on the side of his left eye in the round.

Darchinyan landed a straight left to start the fourth round, but Mares came out quickly, scoring with rights and lefts to Darchinyan's body. Referee Robert Howard deducted one point from Mares for excessive low blows.

In round five, Mares connected with a short left uppercut. Then, Mares landed a right to the body, as he tried to trap Darchinyan in the corner. Darchinyan, 34, found the target midway through the round again, pummeling Mares potent straight lefts. However, Mares answered quickly with some counter left hooks.

Mares landed a big right hand in round six, and walked through most of Darchinyan's shots. Darchinyan landed two massive straight lefts, although Mares, 25, absorbed the punches like a true Mexican warrior. Darchinyan came on strong in the closing seconds, but Mares' youth was starting to have an impact in the fight.

In the seventh round, Mares floored Darchinyan when he connected with a grazing left jab, as Darchinyan was off balance. Referee Robert Howard made the correct call. Mares did land the punch, so it would have been incorrect if Howard had ruled Darchinyan slipped. 

Mares' punch output dropped slightly in round eight. As Mares pressed the action, Darchinyan caught him with a straight left. Next, Darchinyan scored with a lunging left uppercut.

Mares came out furiously in the ninth round, walloping Darhinyan with a right cross - left hook combination. Then, Mares struck Darchinyan in the body with a fast right. Mares began to overwhelm Darchinyan with his swift combinations, landing short rights and rapid left uppercuts. Toward the end of the round, Darchinyan connected with a counter left uppercut.

Mares had a solid tenth round, peppering Darchinyan with rights to the body, vicious left hooks to the head and a firm right hand that sent Darchinyan backwards.

Mares continued to have a higher work rate, striking Darchinyan with a right cross. Yet, Darchinyan would not back down, landing consecutive, flush lefts. Moments later, Mares hurt Darchinyan with a spirited left hook.

In the twelfth round, Mares hit Darchinyan with a right cross. Then, Darchinyan connected with a straight left to Mares' body, but held him after the punch landed. Following a crisp left hook that found its target, Mares struck Darchinyan with wild shots from various angles. After that, he tagged Darchinyan coming forward with a straight right, but Darchinyan responded with a solid left cross.

In the end, Mares' youth, athletic ability and large volume of punches helped edge out a split-decision victory. Darchinyan hit Mares cleanly quite a few times, but Mares fought through these punches that would have put other fighters down for the count.

Next, Darchinyan will face Yonnhy Perez in a consolation bout, while Mares squares off against slick boxer-puncher Joseph Agbeko in the finals of the bantamweight tournament.

AGBEKO OUTPOINTS PEREZ

Joseph "King Kong" Agbeko (28-2, 22 KO's) captured a twelve-round unanimous decision over tough Yonnhy Perez (20-1-1, 14 KO's), pushing ahead a showdown with Abner Mares in the finals of Showtime's Bantamweight Tournament. Official scores were 117-111 (Alan Krebs), 116-112 (Glen Hameda) and 115-113 (Glen Feldman).

Agbeko, 30, and Perez, 31, fought very competitively in round one. Perez put on the pressure, as Agbeko utilized his left jab and moved in and out very efficiently. 

In round two, Perez landed frequently, but Agbeko countered well and delivered punches from a multitude of angles, keeping Perez from sitting down on his punches. 

Perez closed the gap in round three, trapping Agbeko in the corner and connecting with a three-punch combination. Perez' punches were very accurate, as Agbeko tried to control the distance between them.

Agbeko found his range and struck Perez with clean, counter rights in round four. Perez received a minor cut above his left eye, resulting from Agbeko's flush right hands finding its target.

Perez got close in round five to landing some deadly shots, but Agbeko was too elusive for the hard-punching Colombian fighter. Yet, Perez did connect with consecutive rights that briefly stunned Agbeko. 

In the first thirty seconds of round six, both men delivered a series of blazing punches. A right cross by Perez momentarily buckled Agbeko, who was now slugging it out with Perez instead of using his lateral movement. 

In the seventh round, Agbeko went back to circling around the ring and found his range. After connecting with an overhand right, Agbeko landed a right uppercut followed by a flush right cross. Perez received a cut on his forehead, as well as minor swelling under his left cheek.

Agbeko forced Perez back in round eight, landing clean rights and beating him to the punch. Agbeko's right hands were set up behind a well-timed left jab. Perez landed some right crosses, but Agbeko took the punches and kept unleashing his own. 

Perez picked up the pace in round nine, landing a solid counter left hook. Agbeko's punch output dropped during the round. 

After controlling most of the action in round ten, Agbeko connected with a devastating right cross behind his accurate left jab in round eleven, which was the best punch either fighter had landed in the round. Perez' punches lost steam, which enabled Agbeko to hit him at his own will.

In round twelve, Agbeko fought astutely by not entering into any heated exchanges, understanding that he was most likely ahead on the scorecards. Agbeko boxed intelligently, striking Perez with the jab and tactfully using angles until the final bell.

Agbeko versus Mares presents a very interesting match-up. Mares likes to throw a high volume of punches, relying at times on his youthful energy when trading shots with the opposition. Mares also possesses the gifted ability to hurt the competition with either hand. Adversely, Agbeko is a polished boxer, punching at various angles and avoiding an opponent's counter attack by sticking and moving smoothly. Currently, Agbeko utilizes his left jab much better than Mares. Fans are going to be treated to a very stimulating bout when these two men battle in the near future.

Khan Wins War Versus Maidana


Amir "King" Khan (24-1, 17 KO's) proved to the world last night that he can now take a solid punch, winning a vigorous twelve-round unanimous decision over the resilient, hard-punching Argentinian warrior Marcos "El Chino" Maidana (29-2, 27 KO's), in what could be "Fight-of-the-Year". Both C.J. Ross and Jerry Roth scored the bout 114-111, while Glenn Throwbridge scored it 113-112. With the victory, Khan retained his WBA Junior Welterweight title.

Khan opened the first round aggressively, but Maidana caught him with a pair of hard overhand rights. From there, Khan circled as Maidana pressed the action. With approximately twenty seconds left in the round, Khan hammered Maidana with a right followed by a perfectly-placed left hook to the body, instantly dropping him. Maidana got up, but was on shaky legs. Khan came close to ending the bout at that moment, landing a barrage of punches, although the bell rang to end the round.

In round two, Maidana caught Khan with a flush left hook, but Khan answered with a right cross - left uppercut combination. Khan pushed Maidana back, connecting with a series of crisp, accurate combinations to the body and head. Khan displayed too much hand speed for Maidana, landing numerous times to the Argentine combatant's head.

Maidana landed a short right that momentarily hurt Khan in the third round. Again, Khan countered quickly with a sequence of sharp punches, and started using more lateral movement.

During the first 1:30 of round four, Khan blistered Maidana with lightning-quick punches. However, Maidana was relentless, and scored with consecutive left uppercuts as Khan tried to cover up in the second half of the round. In the closing seconds, Khan fired and landed a right uppercut - left hook combination.

Maidana closed the distance in round five, landing an array of left hooks and overhand rights. Yet, referee Joe Cortez deducted one point from Maidana, who was visibly down on the scorecards, for attempting to elbow Khan on a break. Khan had a better second half of the round, striking Maidana with a right uppercut followed by a left hook. Maidana responded near the end of round, connecting with a right to the body and left hook to Khan's head.

In round six, Maidana sustained a cut near the corner of his right eye. Khan flurried, but Maidana kept coming at him, landing a string of uppercuts, left hooks and right crosses. Overall, Khan landed the cleaner punches in the round.

Finally, Maidana's effort would be rewarded. In round seven, Maidana landed a massive overhand right that buckled Khan. Then, Maidana scored with his right uppercut followed by consecutive right hands. After that, Maidana landed a left uppercut - left hook combination. As Khan was against the ropes, Maidana belted him in the body repeatedly while one arm was being held by Khan.

In round eight, Maidana looked extremely tired. Khan took full advantage, nailing Maidana with a succession of rights.

Then, Khan tagged Maidana in round nine with a sharp right uppercut, as Maidana applied pressure. Khan's four-punch combinations and superior hand speed kept Maidana away for the better part of the round.  

Maidana regained his energy in round ten, rocking Khan with a powerful overhand right. Next, Maidana chased Khan around the ring, landing a barrage of rights, left hooks and uppercuts with both hands. Khan responded with a straight right, and somehow managed to stay on his feet.

Maidana appeared a little gassed in round eleven, but continued to stalk Khan. After Khan connected with a fast right uppercut, he hurt Maidana with a precise right - left combination. Later, Maidana answered with rights and lefts to the body followed by a clean right uppercut that struck Khan in the face, although Khan seemed to land the sharper punches in the round.

While Khan closed the twelfth round with a flurry and connected with many flush rights, Maidana brought tremendous pressure, landing wide overhand rights and rock-solid left hooks to Khan's body.

Many members of the boxing media and fight fans believed Maidana would be too tough for Khan to handle, while others had Khan using his ring generalship to capture a decision. Few considered Khan would actually trade punches with Maidana as often as he did. When Khan got hurt during the bout, he showed he was capable of surviving. Maybe, Khan's chin is durable after all?  Khan has vastly improved his skills working under trainer Freddie Roach, and appears ready to conquer the junior welterweight division.

But, will Khan ever attempt to avenge his lone defeat, a first-round knockout at the hands of Breidis Prescott in 2008? There have been rumors swirling about a possible fight with Juan Manuel Marquez next, or perhaps Khan will square-off against the Devon Alexander vs. Timothy Bradley winner on January 29, 2011?

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