Atlantic City, NJ—The billboards and the posters and the press releases may be promoting the HBO-televised matches featuring Yuriorkis Gamboa vs. Jorge Solis and Matt Remillard vs. Miguel Angel Garcia, but the fans who jam the 2,700-seat ballroom at Atlantic City Boardwalk Hall on Saturday evening, March 26, will be coming to see another fight which will not be part of the telecast.
It’s the scheduled 12-round contest between USBA super bantamweight champion Teon Kennedy, of Philadelphia, PA, and challenger Jorge Diaz, of New Brunswick, NJ.
Both men are undefeated and both men bring large contingents of die-hard followers.
Kennedy, 24, is 16-0-1, 7 K0s. He won the vacant USBA 122-pound title Nov. 20, 2009, when he knocked out Francisco Rodriguez, of Chicago, IL, in the 10th round at the Blue Horizon in Philadelphia.
In two subsequent fights, Kennedy outpointed Jose Angel Berranza, of Mexico City, over 12 rounds, then K0d Alex Becerra, of El Paso, TX, in 10 rounds.
A pro since 2007, Kennedy is ranked No. 3 in the world by the IBF, No. 14 by the WBA, No. 23 by the WBC. He also has beaten Lucian Gonzales, Andre Wilson and Thomas Snow.
Kennedy won the 2004 National Golden Gloves flyweight championship in Kansas City, MO. He is managed by Doc Nowicki, Jim Williams and Joe Hand, who also handle the career of unbeaten welterweight Mike Jones. Kennedy is trained by ex-pro lightweight Wade Hinnant and his brother Randy Hinnant.
Diaz, 23, is 15-0, 9 K0s. In his last fight Oct, 30 at Bally’s Atlantic City, Diaz scored a 10-round decision over Emanuel Lucero, of Mexico City, in one of the best fights of 2010 in Atlantic City.
A pro since 2007, Diaz has several impressive wins on his resume, including a sixth-round knockout over highly touted Cuban Yan Barthelemy in Madison Square Garden and an eight-round decision over previously undefeated (16-0) Mexican Alejandro Lopez in Key West, FL.
Against common foes, Diaz out-pointed Lante Addy, of Ghana, over six rounds, while Kennedy was held to a 10-round draw by Addy. Also, Diaz K0d Arthur Parker, of Lancaster, PA, in two rounds, two months after Kennedy beat Parker via four-round decision.
Diaz is managed by Pat Lynch and Sal Alessi. Lynch guided the successful career of the late Arturo Gatti. He is trained by ex-pro welterweight Joe Grier.
A swarming, all-action fighter, Diaz will put pressure on the slick-boxing Kennedy from bell-to-bell.
Kennedy has excellent defensive skills, but he is not shy about standing toe-to-toe and trading punches.
Each man is 5-foot-5 and neither man is known to back down from a good fight.
The first of seven fights begins at 8 pm.