Boxing Ledger's Archives

Sunday, February 27, 2011

Brandon Rios TKO's Miguel Acosta - Watch Video At 1:30

Rios TKO's Acosta; DeMarco Survives Sanchez


2011-02-26: Palms Casino Resort - Las Vegas, Nevada --

24-year-old Brandon "Bam Bam" Rios (27-0-1, 20 KO's) won the WBA World Lightweight title, stopping an extremely tenacious Miguel Acosta (28-4-2, 22 KO's) at 1:14 of the tenth round.

In round one, Rios incessantly stalked Acosta, as he looked for openings to unleash a violent attack. Acosta moved exceptionally well, continuously circling to his left and landing a couple of flush right-hand shots to Rios' sturdy chin.

Rios stepped up his assault in round two, landing a few grazing rights to Acosta's jaw. Toward the end of the round, Acosta caught Rios in the face with a short right uppercut.

Rios tirelessly pounced Acosta's body after absorbing a firm right hand - left hook combination from him in the third round. Rios controlled the first two minutes of action, but Acosta quickly peppered him frequently with forceful rights and wide left hooks to the head and body.

Round four was a nightmare for Rios, as Acosta nailed him numerous times with a series of thunderous right crosses and vigorous left hooks to the head.

Acosta seemed to be winning the fight comfortably behind his well-timed, blazing left jab. But, at 1:30 of round five, Rios connected with a monstrous left hook to Acosta's head. Rios, displaying minor bruising on his face, came on late in the round.

In the sixth round, Rios tagged Acosta on the jaw with a potent left hook, dropping the 32-year-old Venezuelan. However, Acosta fought back fearlessly with his slight edge in hand speed, exchanging bombs with Rios. Nevertheless, Acosta sustained cuts under both eyes and large swelling.

Both men tried to impose their will in a close, competitive seventh round. Acosta's swift hands countered the supreme power of Rios.

With Acosta trapped in the corner, Rios floored him again with a devastating overhand right - left hook combination in the eighth round. Rios' youthful energy flourished, and began to really have a major impact in the fight.

Rios kept applying heavy pressure on a gassed Acosta in the ninth round. Still, Acosta continued firing while his back was against the ropes, although he lacked the steam on his punches to significantly hurt Rios.

Finally, Rios finished a brave Acosta in round ten, sending him down to the canvas hurriedly with a left jab-right cross combination twice, following it with a left hook-right cross-left hook sequence to Acosta's head.

Tonight, Brandon Rios emerged as a star, with unlimited potential to shine even brighter. Before his bout with Rios, Miguel Acosta  had a (19-0, 14 KO's) record since 2004. Rios beat a fighter of the utmost quality in Acosta. In 2007, Acosta had defeated Anges Adjaho via twelve-round split decision, stopped Urbano Antillon by TKO 9 in 2009 and knocked out Paulus Moses in round six in 2010. All of these fighters were unbeaten prior to facing Acosta.

2011-02-26: Heartland Events Center - Grand Island, Nebraska --

Antonio DeMarco (25-2-1 18 KO's) captured the WBC Silver Lightweight title with a twelve-round unanimous decision over Reyes Sanchez (20-4-1, 11 KO's) in a WBC Lightweight Eliminator. Official scores were 117-111, 116-112 and 115-113.

In the first thirty seconds of round one, DeMarco opened a large cut over Sanchez' left eye after landing a hard straight-left shot. Sanchez immediately experienced blood pouring down his face.

Again, DeMarco, a southpaw, hurt Sanchez with a straight left to the jaw in round two. Nevertheless, Sanchez applied more pressure, although he still couldn't disrupt DeMarco's rhythm.

It appeared DeMarco scored a knockdown in the third round when he connected with a straight left, however, referee Vic Drakulich ruled Sanchez had slipped. In the beginning of the round, Sanchez' cut was under control, but he started bleeding all over again by the end of the round.

DeMarco dictated the action for most of round four. Yet, Sanchez trapped DeMarco during the final twenty seconds against ropes, and landed a series of fierce body blows.

Sanchez closed the gap in round five, smothering DeMarco's punches with relentless pressure and by utilizing his left jab.

Sanchez pushed DeMarco back in the sixth round, landing overhand rights and looping left hooks in succession.

Both DeMarco and Sanchez traded a series of accurate punches in a very competitive seventh round.

In the eighth round, they picked up where they left off at the end of round seven. Sanchez threw and landed a high volume of punches in close quarters, while DeMarco retreated. Sanchez, who sported pink, gray and blond hair, took over the fight with his effective aggressiveness, never once taking a backward step.

DeMarco successfully landed many clean punches in round nine, but Sanchez was all over him. DeMarco sustained immense swelling under his left cheek, resulting from the multiple stinging right-hand shots that found the target for Sanchez.

Sanchez caught DeMarco with a low blow in round ten, but DeMarco quickly shook off the effects of it.

In the final two rounds, DeMarco and Sanchez exchanged punch-for-punch at a steady rate. DeMarco tagged Sanchez when his punches were too wide, although he was tiring. Sanchez' punches did not display the same ferocity as early in the fight, however, he was still able to efficiently close the distance between them. 

While Sanchez brought a lot of pressure, he lacked the power to seriously harm DeMarco. On the other hand, DeMarco displayed a ton of heart and a very durable chin throughout the contest. Although he had to fight a great deal backing up, DeMarco managed to strike Sanchez repeatedly with many sound counter-punches, which showed on the official scorecards.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Zab Judah Training For March 5th 2011

Last $50.00 Tickets Released For “Diamond Elite” Event March 12 - Martinez vs. Dzinziruk, Lee vs. McEwan At MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods

NEW YORK, NY (Feb. 25, 2011) – The MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office has released a small amount of $50.00 tickets today for the March 12 “Diamond Elite” championship boxing event, featuring 2010 Fighter of the Year Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez. There will be no additional tickets available at that price level after this small release.

“This is it,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “We wanted to give fans one last opportunity to get in at this price point because the first batch went so quickly. The way tickets are moving makes it clear that Sergio Martinez is the fighter who the people want to see.”

Tickets are going fast and the remaining $50.00 tickets are not expected to last through this weekend. Other tickets for “Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk,” are priced at $450, $250, $125, and $75 and on sale through the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. Tickets can be purchased online at www.mgmatfoxwoods.com, by calling the MGM Grand at Foxwoods at 1-866-646-0609, or in person at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office.

Martinez (46-2-2, 25 KOs), the World Boxing Council (“WBC”) Emeritus and The Ring Magazine middleweight champion, headlines against World Boxing Organization (“WBO”) junior middleweight champion, Sergiy “Razor” Dzinziruk (37-0, 23 KOs), in a 12-round bout for the vacant World Boxing Council Diamond middleweight title.

“Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk” will air live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 PM ET / 7:30 PM PT.

Ethnic rivals Andy Lee (24-1, 18 KOs) of Ireland and Scotland’s Craig McEwan (19-0, 10 KOs) battle in the 10-round “Celtic War” co-feature, matching two of the top middleweight prospects in the world. A solid undercard is also on tap, featuring undefeated Dominican featherweight Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna (13-0, 10 KOs) and 2008 U.S. Olympian, junior middleweight Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade (12-0, 8 KOs).

“Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk” will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Banner Promotions. Lee vs. McEwan will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Golden Boy Promotions. Both bouts will be broadcast live on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 pm ET / 7:30 pm PT.

FRANKLIN “YAH YAH” LAWRENCE READY FOR THE TOP OF THE HEAVYWEIGHT DIVISION

 Photo Credit: Sara Rivest

INDIANAPOLIS, INDIANA (February 25, 2011)—With very few top American Heavyweights in recent years, a new name is ready to crash the party and influx some life into what many boxing insiders say is the lowest time in American Heavyweight boxing.

Enter Franklin “Yah Yah” Lawrence.

The native of Indianapolis, Indiana has scored two impressive knockouts over perennial contender Lance “Mount” Whitaker and most recently on January 29th he beat up and battered former United States Olympian Jason Estrada to win the WBC Interim Caribbean Heavyweight championship.

“I am still absorbing that I have these belts”, said Lawrence, who now sports a record of 14-2-2 with nine knockouts.

“I think because I will fight anyone that I should be recognized more and that motivates me.”

“I was hurt that going into my last bout that Estrada was getting all the recognition. All he ever does was handpick his opponents and I had to earn my spot”

“I should have earned my spot before that and now its time for me to bring back the old days where people look like fighters and fight like true champions”

People who knew Lawrence before the Estrada fight know all about his gift of gab and he even knows that is still more to learn with each fight.

“I defiantly have been a little more confident since that fight as I learned a few new tricks that night”

“I am an exciting fighter and I give the people their monies worth”

Lawrence doesn’t believe that being thirty-five years old is a deterrent on still being able to rise to the top of the Heavyweight division.

“If I started my career sooner, I would be way ahead but I am always in shape as I was back in the gym just four days after the Estrada fight working on my cardio”

Lawrence looks to represent his home state of Indiana and bring back the Heavyweight championship to the Hoosier state.

“In me, Indiana has a true champion. I am doing as well as the Colts, The WNBA team here and all the sports. I want to represent Indiana to the fullest. Lamon Brewster was from here but he has been in California for some time so I believe that I am the man here in Indiana and soon the world will know that”

Franklin Lawrence is promoted by Fisticuffs Promotions and his next bout will be announced shortly.

PROMO : Tomasz Adamek vs Kevin McBride April 9th

Quotes From Adamek - McBride 2/24 Press Conference

2/24/2011 - BRICK CITY BAR & GRILL, NEWARK, NJ

Kathy Duva. Main Events, CEO: "April 9th is an important fight for both fighters: in Kevin McBride's case this is a great opportunity for him; in Tomasz's case he has a great opportunity ahead of him in Poland where he has an offer to fight one of the Klitschko brothers in September. But Tomasz does not like to be idle."

"That brings us to Kevin McBride: he is a big man: he is 6"6"; he is very wide; and very tall; and that is the kind of opponent Tomasz needs to face in order to prepare for the bigger challenge if he is successful. There are other people who have faced Kevin and not been so successful; most notably, Mike Tyson. As we know, Kevin is the man who effectively ended Mike Tyson's career. So Tomasz, Main Events and everybody with him, knows what a big challenge this is, not to be taken lightly."

Doug Jacobs, Integrated Sports, PPV :"It's a bargain at $29.95 for pay-per-view. I know there's another Golden Boy/HBO fight that night that's $45 dollars, but I have no doubt that our show is going to be so much more exciting and a better value for you in today's economic times. In every show we've done here at Prudential Center,with Tomasz Adamek, the atmosphere has been fantastic! The atmosphere comes through well on TV, and the under card matches have come through fantastic. It's always an exciting event."

Jerry Quinn, Kevin McBride Mgr: "We know we are the underdogs for this fight, but we were the underdogs for the Mike Tyson fight also, people underestimated us. We're gonna come down here to win. Kevin is training very hard, day and night, and we are definitely looking forward to it. I know Tomasz is a great fighter. We give him a lot of respect, but we're coming here to win."

Kevin Mc Bride: "I'm from Ireland, I'm Irish, and I'm proud to be a fighter. I'm coming here to fight. This is a big fight for me. An Irish painter, Sean Scully, said to me a couple years ago, 'Follow your dream", and that's what I'm going to do, follow my dream."

"This is a great opportunity, for me to show the world I'm a bigger man. You know, if I get into the later rounds with Tomasz Adamek, when I hit him on the chin he's going to think the whole of Poland hit him! Actually, when I fought Mike Tyson and hit him on the chin I thought, 'when I hit him he's gonna think the whole of Ireland hit him', so I had to think of another statement... You know, Pope John Paul, I hope you don't mind, but I'm gonna take the title from Tomasz Adamek, follow my dream, and become world heavyweight champion, first born Irish. It's gonna be a great night and I'm looking forward to it!"

Ziggy Rozalski, Adamek Advisor - "I want to thank Kevin, because I think it's going to be a great fight. When we fought Kevin with Golota he closed both of Golota's eyes. If I didn't tell them in Polish in the corner, 'how many fingers does the referee have?' he would have probably won, so I say, thank you, but this is going to be a great fight!"

Roger Bloodworth, Adamek Trainer (celebrating his birthday): "I couldn't quite believe I was 31 today... We are taking this fight very serious, because Kevin can punch. Kevin's Irish and he comes to fight. Tomasz is the type of fighter that can't stay idle. He has to stay busy, so we asked for somebody big and they got us somebody big! We have all the respect in the world for Kevin and his corner, and we thank him for taking this fight."

Tomasz Adamek: "This is my next step before Klitschko. My wife says I have ADHD, I cannot sit still at home with nothing doing, this is my life."

"I love fighting at Prudential Center. Everyone lives very close. It feels like my home." When referring to the amount of snow NJ has received this winter, Adamek said, "I can use only shovel, because when my neighbor sees snow blower he smiles, so I only shovel, its good training!"

"Somebody asked me why I am fighting before I have a guaranteed title fight, and I said, 'I want to be active, this is my job. I can't stay home 8 -9 months. So we made a fight - thank you Kevin for taking this fight.' Tomasz added, "He's a big man, we respect him. I'm preparing with Roger, it's our second week in the Pocono's. We prepare very hard and I am very healthy. I want to be the champion. I am serious, this is my life, this is my way, this is my destiny."

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Brandon Rios vs Miguel Acosta February 26th

“Irish” Micky Ward Special Guest For “Diamond Elite” Event March 12 - Martinez vs. Dzinziruk, Lee vs. McEwan At MGM Grand Arena At Foxwoods

NEW YORK, NY (Feb. 24, 2011) – “Irish” Micky Ward, more popular now than ever after the success of the Oscar-nominated movie about his life, The Fighter, has been invited by promoter Lou DiBella to be a special guest March 12 for the “Diamond Elite” event at the MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Connecticut.

World Boxing Council (“WBC”) Emeritus and The Ring Magazine middleweight champion, 2010 Fighter of the Year Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez (46-2-2, 25 KOs), takes on World Boxing Organization (“WBO”) junior middleweight champion, Sergiy “Razor” Dzinziruk (37-0, 23 KOs), in the 12-round main event for the vacant World Boxing Council Diamond middleweight title.

The chief supporting fight is “Celtic War,” pitting exciting middleweights Andy Lee (24-1, 18 KOs) of Ireland and Scotland’s Craig McEwan (19-0, 10 KOs), in a 10-round bout of ethnic rivalry with potential world title shot implications for the winner.

The Martinez vs. Dzinziruk and Lee vs. McEwan fights will be broadcast on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 pm ET / 7:30 pm PT.

Ward has many direct ties to the March 12 event. Here are the seven degrees of Micky Ward, in association with the “Diamond Elite” event, with quotes from the consensus 3-time Fight of the Year participant:

Lou DiBella: The last four fights of Ward’s career (2002-2003), including the famed Gatti-Ward trilogy, were by far his most lucrative with approximately $3-million in purse earnings. By no coincidence, Micky was promoted by DiBella Entertainment for the final four fights of his 18-year pro career. “Lou is a good guy and a man of his word. He promised to make me a lot of money and he did. And all we needed was a handshake deal.”

Sergio Martinez: The Boxing Writers Association of America (“BWAA”) will hold its annual awards dinner May 6 in Las Vegas. Martinez will receive its 2010 Fighter of the Year, named in honor of the great Sugar Ray Robinson, while Ward receives the 2011 James A. Farley Award for Honesty and Integrity in Boxing. “Sergio is a great fighter, one of the best in the world today. He’s also a good person.”

James “Buddy” McGirt: Ward got to know the former two-time world champion and 2002 Trainer of the Year, Buddy McGirt, up close and personal in 2002-2003 when McGirt trained Gatti for all three fights of their epic trilogy. “Buddy was a great trainer and great fighter himself. I’m still good friends with him today.” McGirt is Dzinziruk’s co-trainer.

Andy Lee: Besides the obvious “green” connection linking their Irish heritage, Ward was the color commentator for the PPV airing of Lee’s most dramatic knock-out on March 16, 2007, against former world champion Carl Daniels in The Theater at Madison Square Garden. “Andy is a good, stand-up boxer who has a lot of talent.”

Freddie Roach: Another BWAA recipient in May – third year in a row and fifth time overall as the Eddie Futch Trainer of the Year – Freddie Roach, like Ward, is a Massachusetts native. Ward’s first amateur match at the age of seven was against Freddie’s younger brother, Joey. “I’ve known Freddie my whole life. I never fought Freddie because he’s older than me. I never really thought back then that Freddie would become the trainer he is today.”

Foxwoods: Although Ward never boxed in MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods, he did fight four times in different venues at Foxwoods, winning three times against Steve Quinonez, Louis Veader and Mark Fernandez. Micky lost in the Bingo Hall to Antonio Diaz by 10-round decision on HBO. “I have great memories of fighting at Foxwoods. It’s still one of my favorite places for boxing.”

HBO: Micky fought six times on HBO (three times vs. Gatti, Jesse James Leija, Diaz and Shea Neary). “My experiences on HBO were excellent. HBO was really good for me. Everything was great, from Larry Merchant to Jim Lampley, who were MC’s at my retirement party, to everybody else at HBO.”

“Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk” will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Banner Promotions. Lee vs. McEwan will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Golden Boy Promotions. Both bouts will be broadcast live on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 pm ET / 7:30 pm PT.

Tickets for “Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk,” are priced at $450, $250, $125, $75, and $50 and on sale through the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. Tickets can be purchased online at www.mgmatfoxwoods.com, by calling the MGM Grand at Foxwoods at 1-866-646-0609, or in person at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office.

For more information about DiBella Entertainment, including a list of all upcoming bouts, please visit www.dbe1.com, or follow Lou DiBella on twitter, @loudibella.

ALL PHILLY WAR AT THE SHORE HIGHLIGHTS BOXING ACTION THIS SATURDAY ON GFL

NEW YORK (FEBRUARY 24, 2011)—This Saturday night Peltz Boxing Promotions will present an action packed title bout plus some of the best prospects on the east coast as, it will be a “Philly War at the Shore.” In the Main event, “King” Gabriel Rosado will take on Jamaal “Da Truth” Davis in a battle for the interim NABA Super Welterweight title take place in Atlantic City and an will streamed LIVE all over the world on www.gofightlive.tv

ALL PHILLY WAR AT THE SHORE—SATURDAY 7:30 PM EST--$9.99

Last July, “King” Gabriel Rosado (15-5, 8 KO’s) came within a whisker of winning the USBA Jr. Middleweight title when he and fellow Philadelphia Derek Ennis waged a classic and this Saturday Rosado will once again stare across from a fighter from “The City of Brotherly Love” when he takes on Jamaal Davis (12-7, 6 KO’s) in a battle for the Interim NABA Super Welterweight title.

These two know each other from the Philly gym circuit and boxing fans all know that when two Philly fighters get together expect fireworks.

The exciting co-feature will pit rising and undefeated Jr. Welterweight Ronald Cruz (10-0, 7 KO’s) will take on upset specialist Dillet Frederick (7-3-3, 4 KO’s)

Cruz has been steadily climbing up the ranks and in his last bout he scored what many have called a shocking upset over former amateur national champion Jeremy Bryan and that win catapulted him into one of the top prospects on the east coast.

Frederick has been in this situation before and he stopped then undefeated Florida prospect Raymond Charles in his last bout so Cruz better be on the top of his game if he wants to remain perfect.

Also on the card will be impressive and undefeated heavyweight Bryant Jennings (5-0, 3 KO’s); Jr. Welterweight DeCarlo Perez (2-0-1, 1 KO) and Lightweight Tyrone Luckey (2-0, 2 KO’s) as part of this seven bout card from Ballys in Atlantic City.

FULL CARD:
12 Rounds- NABA Super Welterweight title-Jamaal Davis (12-7, 6 KO’s) vs Gabriel Rosado (15-5, 8 KO’s)
8 Rounds-Jr Welterweights-Ronald Cruz (10-0, 7 KO’s) vs. Dillet Frederick (7-3-3, 4 KO’s)
6 Rounds- Jr. Welterweights-Dontre King (3-8-2, 1 KO) vs. DeCarlo Perez (2-0-1, 1 KO)
6 Rounds- Heavyweights-Bryant Jennings (5-0, 3 KO’s) vs. Theron Johnson (5-3, 1 KO)
4 Rounds- Jr. Welterweights- Hector Collado (0-2-1) vs. Julio DeJesus (4-2-1, 3 KO’s)
4 Rounds- Lightweights- Tyrone Luckey (2-0, 2 KO’s) vs. Gustavo Dailey (4-10, 1 KO)
4 Rounds- Jr. Lightweights- Paul Fernandez (5-3-2, 3 KO’s) vs. Tommy Garcia (2-3, 1 KO)

To order the card for just $9.99, click: http://www.gofightlive.tv/Events/Fight/Boxing/All_Philly_War_at_the_Shore_Rosado_vs_Davis/931

Inside The Cotto Training Camp - 2011

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Toks Owoh Interview: Owoh Talks Glen Johnson, Billy Boyle, Title Aspirations And More...


By: Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro

One of the UK’s most exciting and talented Super Middleweights of the nineties and early naughties, Toks Owoh, made his return to the ring late last year and is now set to start his second championship campaign, albeit at Cruiserweight, in earnest at the Steve Goodwin promoted ‘Unleash The Fury’ Super Show at York Hall in Bethnal Green, London, on the 5th March 2011.

Throughout the 1990s Toks established a reputation as one of the toughest and most talented boxers to emerge on the British scene. One thing you could guarantee is plenty of excitement when Toks fought, his no nonsense all action approach ensured either an early stoppage finish, or if it went the distance an all action full on war to the final bell.

As early as his fourth professional bout Toks was well and truly on Frank Warren’s radar, and by his sixth was signed by the aforementioned Frank Warren to his Sports Network promotions company.

Throughout the nineties Toks built up a formidable 13-1 record, with no less than ten of his wins being by stoppage or knockout. His one and only loss in the 1990s came at the hands of New Jersey hardman Omar Sheika in 1998. By the dawn of the new millennium Toks was ranked #3 in the world and was already being touted as the World Champion in waiting.

Toks fought anyone that was willing to get in the ring with him. The year 2000 epitomised his willingness to do just this. In February he took on tough Ukrainian Kostyantyn Okhrey and firmly disposed of him in the fourth.

Then in June Toks traveled to Burton-on-Trent to face Hull’s Tony Booth for the second time in his career. At the weigh-in Toks came in at 169lbs, but Booth came in at 180lbs, a whopping eleven pounds heavier. Toks just shrugged this off and the fight went on regardless. Unsurprisingly Toks punished Booth by stopping him in the third round.

Three months later Toks finally gets a title shot, for the IBF Inter-Continental Super Middleweight belt. Originally Toks opponent was to be tough African southpaw Joe Lieya, but just a few days before the fight he pulled out and Glen Johnson stepped in.

Again Toks just accepted the situation, even though he had been training for a southpaw, and another all out war ensued, however this time it was Toks that got stopped in the sixth round.

After such a glorious career Toks more or less dropped off the radar, only making the occasional return to the ring during the next five years.

His final fight was against Paul Bonson in a four rounder Cruiserweight contest at the Equinox Night Club in London on the 24th July 2005, Toks won and then seemed to just disappear from boxing altogether. That is until now.

Earlier this week Toks popped in to the Ultrachem TKO Gym in Canning Town to chat with me, I spent a highly entertaining hour or so with him where he happily answered my questions, although have to be honest and admit I didn’t get to use all my pre-prepared questions as Toks covered them as he chatted away. So without further ado I am proud to present a conversation with Mr Toks Owoh - the unabridged version.


Rio - Thank you for taking the time to talk with me today. My first question is an obvious one. Why did you retire and why did you choose to come out of retirement now?


Toks Owoh - Actually I did not want to retire, because that’s not my style. When I lost to Glen Johnson my comeback fight after that was supposed to be against Richie Woodhall for the WBU World title.

That’s when I was with Frank Warren. I went away to train for the fight, come back and the fight did not happen because Richie Woodhall pulled out. He said he had a bad back and retired after that.

There was no replacement for me. You know it’s like training for a war, but there’s no war. You know what I mean, you’re building an army but there’s no war. At the end of the day it’s like me wasting my money and there’s nobody to reimburse me for the money I’d already spent and that kind of hurt me, I was very disappointed with the promotion I was with at that time and I took a step back.

I was supposed to have another fight, which was supposed to be a warm up fight and that did not happen. So I left the promotion and took a couple of months off.

I went to another promoter and had a couple of fights with them, probably three or four fights and after that I decided to take a bit of a rest because I had been trying to keep my weight down for so long. I’d been at Super Middleweight for nearly ten years, that’s a very hard thing to do, staying at the same weight. So I thought you know what I’m going to give my body a rest for a couple of months.

I had a fight in 2005 at Cruiserweight just to give my body a rest. So I decided I’m not going to do Super Middleweight no more and I’m going to move up, because I couldn’t keep to the weight, it was killing me making the weight.

Then my Mum passed away, so I went to Africa to bury my Mum. Afterwards I come back to England to resume my career. A year and half into that I done my brain scan, medical and everything and ready to fight and my Dad passed away so it was like a double blow for me.

When my Dad passed away that was very, very difficult for me because, not only did I love my Mum and Dad, there’d been there for me. I was the only one born in England, out of twenty three kids. One of my Brothers is in Chicago, the eldest, so I have no choice after him it’s me. So I had no choice but to go back home, because my Dad had businesses over there, Hotels, Bakery, Restaurants and everything over there. I had no choice but to go home to bury my Dad and make sure everything is OK for my brothers and sisters , you know what I mean. I went over there, secured that, then when I come back and when I come back decided it was time to finish the unfinished business.

Rio - You’ve been right up there, ranked #3 in the world and fought for a major title - The IBF Inter-Continental against Glen Johnson. Could you give me your view of the fight with Glen?


Toks - When I fought Glen Johnson I was #3 in the World, I was rated high by the WBO and IBF. I was rated very high at that time. At that time I was undefeated for a long time. With Glenn Johnson I don’t want to say that he beat me fair and square. I’m not the kind of person that cries over spilt milk. I lost, I lost, I failed to prepare properly and I failed.

I failed to prepare properly and my body wasn’t right at the time. I was carrying an injury nobody knew about. I was in the situation where I had sold a lot of tickets. I was young, stupid and sold a lot of tickets so wanted to fight.

If you look at my record, look at my fights with Sports Network you’ll see that I sold a lot of tickets.

My fans come to watch me, but often the opponent pull out, that happened four or five times, it’s painful, nothing’s more painful than that. I’d rather fight and lose than let the fans down. It’s the most painful thing when someone pulls out. It hurts me more than anything. Not just that but also the pay day, it’s the only job that I have. Apart from the pay day the pain that you go through in the gym, letting the fans down hurts more than anything.

Coming back to the Glen Johnson fight it went six rounds, hard six rounds. I believe the hardest six rounds that he’s ever had. If you watch the tape, he tells me that he wasn’t expecting that.

You have to remember for that fight I was supposed to fight another guy, who was a southpaw. I was training for a southpaw. The mistake I made was to take the Glen Johnson fight too soon. I took the fight because I didn’t want to pull out because the guy I was due to be fighting pulled out. So they got me someone that had just fought for the IBF World title. Just three days before they told me the opponent had been changed from someone that could have been easier to a really hard one.

I’m a warrior, a fighter and I do this for a living. At the end of the day I got into the ring and I did my best. I wasn’t well, I wasn’t well at all. I was taking tablets for the pain in my side for weeks and weeks before the fight. But I wanted to get the title so bad and I didn’t want to let the fans down.

I gave him a good fight, he stopped Roy Jones in two rounds, I gave him a good fight, he didn’t knock me out. I was stopped on my feet. It was a good fight.

Rio - How badly did that loss affect you?

Toks - The effect of that loss was huge, that could have propelled me to something big, it was huge. This is the question, was I unlucky to get Glen Johnson at that day. But everything happens for a reason. There’s a reason why I am alive today, there’s a lot of people from then that are dead now. There’s a purpose because I am going to become a champion. Plus I had the opportunity to do it . I’ve been in a lot of dog fights but I haven’t been bashed up. I’m still fresh, in my mind I’m still fresh.

Glen Johnson got to fight for many titles and that could have been me if everything was right, if the body and the mind was right and that’s boxing for you. That’s the reason I’m back now I believe in this division. I’m comfortable at this weight and I don’t believe that anybody in this division can live with me.

I’m used to big guys. When I was twelve stone I was sparring people heavier than me, taller than me, so weight is nothing to me. I carry the punch from Super Middleweight to Cruiserweight. I can feel that on the bag, when I spar, I carry that with me.

Rio - On March 5th you are now set to face Billy Boyle after JJ Ojuederie pulled out. Do you know much about Billy and how do you see the fight going?

Toks - I’ve only seen bits and pieces of this guy Billy Boyle. He’s alright. I don’t condemn any fighters. I don’t say I’m going to this or do that. When I was younger I was a little bit Yeah I’m gonna do this and that, bit things are different now in Boxing, anything can happen.

You have to understand that I’m thirty eight years old now and my body isn’t the same as I used to be before. I’m good and there’s no real difference, that’s the weight. I’m still me, anyone that comes in the ring with me will get a good fight. It’s not going to be easy for them. Simple, it’s gonna be a very hard fight

With Billy Boyle I’m not going to say it’s gonna be easy, nothing is easy, it’s gonna be a hard fight but I’m gonna try and make it easy, because I believe I have been in this game longer than him. My experience, my power and I’ve got a variety of punches. I’ve mixed with the best, Chris Eubanks, Roy Jones, all of them I sparred. I learn a lot from them.

Rio - Your comeback fight was against Hastings Rasani at Heavyweight, you won it, could you tell me your thoughts on the fight?


Toks - Yeah that was at Heavyweight, but I’m really a Cruiserweight now, it was my come back fight and I was sixteen stone.

Hastings Rasani, God, I have to be honest with you, anybody and I’m talking about anybody after six years off to come back with Hastings Rasani. He beat JJ Ojuederei, he beat Leon Williams and he beat Bruce Scott.

To come back with Hastings Rasani as my first fight after six years, come on, to be honest with you I could have stopped him, I wasn’t in my best shape, I was flabby. I was say fourty percent in shape. I only had four months to prepare for that fight, I had a lot to catch up on. My experience and the way I know what I know in the ring that’s what got me through the fight. I wasn’t in any trouble at all with Hastings Rasani.

If you watch that fight I could have stopped him in the first round, but I took a step back and let me see how I would go for four rounds and get that into my blood stream. It’s not about taking people out it’s about getting the work out. When people get to know me they know I go about things the hard way and Hastings Rasani is doing it the hard way.

Rio - You’ve been a championship fighter, are you looking for titles on this your second campaign?

Toks - Obviously I’m looking to title fights. The British Boxing Board of Control owe me big time. The only reason I am saying that is because I have been a pro since 1994 or ‘95, it may even be ‘93 I can’t remember. (ed: since 1995). I’ve never done anything to tarnish the name of the game, you know what I mean, I’ve never take drugs, I’ve never fight outside the ring. I’ve always carried my way in the nicest way possible, I’m nice to people who are nice to me, I’ve been good to them and now it is their time to be good to me, in the way of giving me a title shot.

The British Boxing Board of Control should sanction me to fight for the British title. At one time for the Super Middleweight British title they gave it to David Starie and not me. Starie defended the title against Dean Francis. The board asked me to fight David Starie then for some reason between Frank Warren and the board they asked me which one I want, David Starie or Richie Woodhall, but they went for Richie Woodhall and the WBU title but personally I wanted to go for David Starie. You know, that’s what I want but they convinced me to go for the WBU. I said to the board no, I want to go for David Starie.

I fought about everybody around at that time, my record is strong, it’s not their place to go telling me I have to fight for these. My body is right and I make the weight, I should be fighting for the British title, I shouldn’t be going for the Southern Area because I passed that a long time ago. Know what I mean I passed that a long time ago. Southern Area is people up and coming, that’s what the Southern Area is supposed to be about, it’s about people with seven fights or so to give them their first taste of title boxing. I’ve had over twenty fights and I’ve mixed with the best in the World. At the end of the day if I’m going to start somewhere, they should start me of with the British title fight. You know what I mean, I don’t mind if I have to work for it, have a couple of fights for it. If I have to have an eliminator I don’t mind, but that’s what I deserve. I deserve that and I’m asking that from the board.

I talked to one of the guys from the Board, can’t remember his name, he was very nice and he said yeah Toks have a couple of fights and we’ll see.

Rio - Who do you have on the radar for future fights, especially bearing in mid your championship intentions?

Toks - Most of these guys in this division don’t want to fight me, know what I mean, we’re talking about Billy Boyle, he’s really a Light Heavyweight so I have to really, really move down to fourteen stone six or fourteen stone four for Billy Boyle. That’s a Cruiserweight Championship fight weight limit.

At the end of the day I put it on JJ Ojuederie, but he don’t want to know, you know what I mean, I understand JJ saying he don’t want to fight me, he don’t want to know.

We approached Leon Williams, he didn’t want to know. I like Leon Williams, when I was boxing for a title he was an amateur at that time. I remember when he was coming to the gym. He used to look up to me. I like him, he’s someone I like. But he’s someone in my way to getting the title. He’s a Cruiserweight and I’m a Cruiserweight and if you are going to get somewhere you got to get down or lay down. Move out of the way or get moved over, simple if you wont move out of the way I’ll move him over. If he wants me I’m here, the old man is here. That goes for all of them.

Matty Askin, he’s on my radar right now, Ricky Hatton (Askin’s promoter) is my boy, we knew each other well at one time, hopefully he’ll make it happen with his boy. Leon Williams I want him if he’ll have it.

Terry Dunston, how can I say, Terry and I go way, way back. He knows I’m a ruffian, me and Terry are around the same age. Like I said if anybody isn’t going to move over then I’ll make them move over. No disrespect for Terry, Terry’s my boy and he don’t have to move over I’m talking about the kids. With Terry it’s if it happens it happens as I’m not backing down for nobody. If it happens it happens but I’m saying, respect, Terry’s my boy and there’s some places you can’t go because of the respect for someone because of where we’ve been, because of the bond we have from the past. But if the worse comes to worse and we have to do it, then fuck it we’ll do it.

Anyone else in the top ten, you know Herbie Hide, whoever I don’t know them so that’s OK, Terry, it would be hard to fight Terry you know what I mean. Anybody else, Herbie Hide, Rob Norton, anybody else can get it, Leon Williams can get it. I want the guy that beat Leon Williams but JJ Ojuederie is not even on my radar no more, he had his chance.

Rio - Your ring name is Viper, how did you come to have that moniker?

Toks - The Viper, I was the first Viper, at that time Bobby Vanzie was around, but I was number one Viper. I turned professional way before Vanzie, way, way before Vanzie. At that time in the British Boxing Board of Control they asked for your nickname and my nickname was the Viper, you can check this out with the Boxing Board of Control. When Vanzie come he could box like a Viper as well.

It’s still there, it’s the eye to see where the punch can go in that split second. I’ve still got that, you see that in the gym, the Viper spit. You might see that on the fifth as I don’t like overtime. I’m in the mood now with the training I have for this fight is one hundred percent. With Rasani I was just fourty percent. You’re gonna see my body shape, your gonna see what my body looks like, for that fight and this fight. I look more compact and you’ll see the zip of my punches . It’s going to be different I know that. When I feel this way I am confident about the fight.

Rio - Is there anything else you would like to tell the readers about Toks Owoh?

Toks - Before the end of the year I believe I am working toward a World title because I want to try and rack everything together. You know what I mean, the way Boxing works is funny sometimes. I was managed by Frank Warren for nearly six years, there’s a funny story to that. A lot of people have to go to the Olympics, ABA to get with Frank Warren. I didn’t even ask for him, he asked for me, you understand.

At that time I was managed by Mr Akai at All Stars, a wonderful man and I had four fights, four knockouts. In my amateur career I had a fight with a guy called Jimmy Branch and he was a very good amateur, he was top amateur, and he beat me senseless. In my first international he beat me senseless.

Years down the line, that was when I was nineteen, when I am twenty three and professional so I was packing my bags to go to America to train with Eddie Fuchs, Eddie Fuchs was still alive at that time. I went to America to spar with Jimmy Little so when I was over there they say how many fights you had and I say I’ve had just four fights. They say you know what who are you with. I didn’t have a big contract with anybody who could look after me. Eddie Fuchs say that he will look after me.

I came back to England to sell my properties and things to move over there and the call came through to me, I was with Mr Akai, but Ernie Fossey call me for a fight, I don’t know where he got my number but he called me. They were looking after Jimmy Little, he asked me what I was weighing at the moment, I’ve never talked with Ernie Fossey in my life since that day. He says they were going to use me for an opening for Jimmy Branch. So they got me for Jimmy Branch even though I didn’t want to fight Jimmy Branch because the memory of him beating me so bad that I couldn’t swallow a banana after the fight, my body was just numb. So that was still on my mind. Four or five years down the line, I’m a man now not a boy and the memory was still there.

But the only thing that made me take the fight was when they mentioned the money they were going to give me was five grand, that’s a lot of money, that would help me out over there. So you know what I say that I’ll take it. For that kind of money, hell yes I’ll take the fight.

So I took the fight and went to Norwich, on the way to Norwich was me, Israel, John and Trevor and our car had an accident. No lie our car rolled over twice and then boom. We thought we were dead. If you believe in destiny I had been going there thinking I would do my best, I will try and win, I am undefeated so whatever happens, happens.

After the accident i was pumped up. When we got there we probably had four or five people supporting me and Ian Napa, who was just coming forward with Frank Warren.

I knocked him out, it was one of the fastest knockouts of the year - fifty seven seconds. I knocked him out, it was wonderful it was revenge. It was beautiful you know.

They didn’t give me my money that day so they asked me to come in to the office to come and collect the money. I’d already booked my ticket to go to America and when I got to the office Frank made me a tea and asked me to sit down and then asked me to join his promotion. A lot of people chase them, I didn’t chase them and I would love to sign with them but when you phone Sports Network you aint getting nowhere, you know what I mean.

There’s nothing boring about Toks Owoh, Sky TV will tell you any fight I’m in something happens in them, if it goes the distance it will be a dog fight. That’s one thing with me just look at my fights with Glen Johnson, Tony Booth. I had two wars with Tony Booth, when Tony Booth was good. So I go with Frank Warren. I can’t say too much about Frank Warren, I enjoyed my time with Sports Network.

Maybe one day I’ll get the chance to work with them again. I left them they did not leave me. I decided to go because I wasn’t getting the fights I wanted. They released me and there was no court case or anything. Maybe one day I’ll get to fight one of their boys. I know they’ve got Cruiserweights over there.

At the end of the day I can see myself fighting for a World title, if every thing goes well, body well, mind well. With the promoter I’ve got now, he’s a good guy, if the plan goes well. I can sense it by the way he talks to me. He’s very nice, very genuine, straight forward and he tries best to make things work. He’s the kind of person I like and that’s the way Frank Warren used to be when I first was with him.

Rio - Thank you so much, I honestly enjoyed our chat together and genuinely wish you the success you clearly deserve.

Toks - Thank you, I wasn’t sure about coming here but glad I did. I enjoyed it too and will see you at the fight.

Toks Owoh versus Billy Boyle headlines the Steve Goodwin promoted ‘Unleash The Fury’ event at York Hall, Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 5th March, and is supported by a top class eleven bout card that includes the return of the magnificent Michael Grant and another chance to see sensational Dutch Cruiserweight prospect Mitchell Balker in action, plus much, much more.

Tickets for Unleash The Fury at the York Hall, Bethnal Green, London on Saturday 5th March 2011 are on sale now - priced £35 (Unreserved) or £60 (Ringside). and are available on-line at www.tkoboxoffice.com, call 07960 850645 or in person at The Ultrachem TKO Gym, Gillian House, Stephenson Street, Canning Town, London E16 4SA.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Last Chance For Judah - Mabuza Ringside Tix!

Nearly all the VIP Ringside tickets for the World Junior Welterweight Title fight between Brooklyn's Zab Judah and Kaizer Mabuza of South Africa are sold.

Only a handful of the VIP Ringside tickets, priced at $253 remain in the box office, it was announced today by promoters Main Events and Super Judah Promotions.

"Prudential Center's Amerihealth Pavilion is a much smaller venue than the main arena next door," Main Events promoter Kathy Duva said. "Fans who want to sit right up front in the VIP section should buy their tickets now. The Amerihealth Pavilion is an intimate venue where every seat in the house provides a fantastic view of the action."

Tickets priced at $103, $78 and $53 are still available.

The March 5th card featuring Zab "Super" Judah vs. Kaizer Mabuza for the IBF World Jr. Welterweight title is promoted by Main Events and Super Judah Promotions. An exciting undercard will also feature Sadam "Worldkid" Ali, as well as Tarvis Simms and 5 other local standouts. The fights will take place at Prudential Center's AmeriHealth Pavilion, Newark, NJ.

Doors open at 7:30pm; first fight 8:00pm. Tickets priced at $253 Ringside, $103 Reserved seating on floor, $88 General Admission in Bleachers and $53 GA Standing Room on floor. Tickets on sale 2/5, available at Prudential Center Box Office, by calling TicketMaster at 800-745-3000 or www.Prucenter.com

Judah vs. Mabuza will be distributed in North America by Integrated Sports Media for live viewing at 9 PM/ET 6 PM/PT on both cable and satellite pay per view via iN Demand, DIRECTV, Avail-TVN and DISH Network in the United States, as well as Viewer's Choice, Shaw and Bell TV in Canada, for a suggested retail price of only $29.95.

"ACTION HEROES" TAKE TO THE BIG STAGE ON APRIL 9 IN AN EVENT FEATURING SIX ALL-ACTION CHAMPIONS ERIK MORALES VS. MARCOS MAIDANA WINKY WRIGHT VS. MATTHEW MACKLIN ROBERT GUERRERO VS. MICHAEL KATSIDIS FROM THE MGM GRAND GARDEN ARENA IN LAS VEGAS AND TELEVISED LIVE ON HBO PAY-PER-VIEW®


LOS ANGELES, CA (February 22) - To become a legend, you must beat a legend and on Saturday, April 9, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev., six "Action Heroes" will be featured in one night of all-out action fights where every bout pits two fighters looking to prove something against each other. The HBO Pay-Per-View televised event features Five-Time and Three-Division World Champion Erik "El Terrible" Morales taking on former WBA Interim Super Lightweight World Champion Marcos "El Chino" Maidana in the main event. The telecast also features former Undisputed Junior Middleweight World Champion Winky Wright facing current European Middleweight Champion Matthew "Mack The Knife" Macklin as well as former World Champions Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero and Michael Katsidis "The Great" squaring off in what promises to be a slugfest.

"Given the styles, heart and determination of both fighters, Morales vs. Maidana has Fight of the Year written all over it," said Oscar de la Hoya, president of Golden Boy Promotions. "These two fighters only know one way to fight, and that's moving forward. Plus, we have a crossroads battle between a future Hall of Famer in Winky Wright, against a young slugger trying to make a name for himself in the U.S. in Matthew Macklin. You can expect one of the greatest matchups of lightweights in the game today when Robert Guerrero and Michael Katsidis, two warriors who will leave everything in the ring, face each other. I personally can't wait to watching all three of these great fights on April 9."

"Boxing fans are filled with anticipation for April 9," said Mark Taffet of HBO Pay-Per-View. "Boxing legends Erik Morales and Winky Wright in tough comeback fights; non-stop action fighters like Marcos Maidana and Michael Katsidis; and courageous Robert Guerrero continuing his rise to the top. We're looking forward to a great event."

The pride of Tijuana, Erik "El Terrible" Morales (51-6, 35 KO's) has epitomized the heart and skill of the Mexican warrior for 18 years and at 34 he believes he still has plenty to offer the boxing world. A winner of world titles at junior featherweight, featherweight, and junior lightweight, Morales' resume reads like a who's who of the best of this era, with his list of vanquished foes including Daniel Zaragoza, Junior Jones, Wayne McCullough, Kevin Kelley, In-Jin Chi, Paulie Ayala, Jesus Chavez and Carlos Hernandez. The last man to defeat Manny Pacquiao, which he did in their first of three bouts in 2005, "El Terrible" is best remembered for his classic trilogy with Marco Antonio Barrera, a rivalry which captivated all of Mexico and the entire boxing world. Following his 2007 bout with David Diaz, Morales took a nearly three year hiatus from the ring, but upon his return in 2010, he has been in championship form with wins over Jose Alfaro, Willie Limond and Francisco Lorenzo, setting the stage for one of boxing's most highly anticipated showdowns when he takes on Maidana.

"Marcos Maidana is an exciting young fighter and there is no quit in either of us," said Morales. "Like true warriors, we will keep fighting until the end. I know my hand will be raised as the winner when it is over."

Quickly becoming known as one of boxing's most exciting fighters, Santa Fe, Argentina's Marcos "El Chino" Maidana (29-2, 27 KO's) has won over legions of fans in the United States since he made his American debut in June of 2009. It was in that fight that Maidana burst onto the international boxing scene with a stunning upset victory over "Vicious" Victor Ortiz. The bout lasted less than six rounds, but saw Maidana hit the canvas three times and Ortiz twice before the action was halted in the sixth round in a fight that received mention as a Fight of the Year candidate. One of the most powerful and concussive punchers in the sport, as evidenced by the fact that 93% of his wins came via knockout, 27-year-old Maidana once again wowed fans in his last fight on December 11, 2010 when he took on WBA Super Lightweight World Champion Amir Khan in the Boxing Writers Association of America 2010 Fight of the Year. In a back-and-forth battle, Maidana fought through a first round knockdown and endured through the early rounds as he closed the gap against Khan in the late rounds. Khan survived a vicious tenth round onslaught by Maidana in which he looked to be on the brink of being knocked out, and went on to win a close unanimous decision in an instant classic. Maidana will look to give his fans a little more of his brand of boxing excitement when he faces Morales on April 9.

"Erik Morales is one of the greatest fighters of all-time and I'm honored and excited to be fighting him," said Maidana. "But when the bell rings, I will put respect aside and do what I do best - which is knock my opponent out."

A mainstay on the pound-for-pound list throughout his reign as Undisputed Junior Middleweight World Champion and as a top middleweight contender, St. Petersburg, Florida's Winky Wright (51-5-1, 25 KO's) is a gifted technician in the ring whose skill and savvy have befuddled opponents for two decades. The 39-year old Wright won his first world title in 1996 when he defeated Bronco McKart for the WBO Junior Middleweight crown and, with the exception of a majority decision loss to Harry Simon and a controversial majority decision loss to Fernando Vargas that most observers had Wright winning, he reigned over the 154-pound division for eight years. His biggest wins came in 2004 when he defeated Shane Mosley in back-to-back bouts. In 2005, Wright moved up to the middleweight division and issued defeats to Felix Trinidad, Sam Soliman and Ike Quartey, proving over and over that he was among boxing's pound for pound best. His only defeats in nearly a decade came at the hands of future Hall of Famer Bernard Hopkins (at Light Heavyweight) and Paul Williams in his last fight in April of 2009. On April 9, he returns to the ring to begin his search of a fourth world championship. A win for Wright likely means a world title shot will be in his immediate future. A loss for Wright likely means the end of a great career and induction into the Hall of Fame in five years. In Wright's mind, the later is not an option right now.

"I can't wait to get back in the ring on April 9th," said Wright. "I feel stronger, faster and sharper than ever, and I'm ready to reclaim what's mine, but first, I'll have to show Matthew Macklin some new tricks in Vegas."

A gritty battler hailing from Birmingham, England, Matthew Macklin (28-2, 19 KO's) is coming back to fight in the United States for the first time since 2005, eager to show fans in Las Vegas just why he has become a European sensation over the last few years. A crowd-pleaser whose only loss in the last seven years was in a classic 10-round brawl with Jamie Moore, the 28-year old Macklin has since won 11 in a row, six by knockout, including a first round TKO of 26-2 Amin Asikainen in September of 2009 that earned him the European Boxing Union Middleweight title. Macklin has defended his title twice, most recently against Ruben Varon (W12) last December, but he's ready to make a splash on the international stage against one of the best fighters in the game. For Macklin, like Wright, a win on April 9 likely secures him a world title shot. A loss will mean heading back to the drawing board in the U.K. to rebuild, but Macklin fully intends on making some history of his own at the expense of the future Hall of Famer.

"This is exactly the kind of fight I've been looking for and I believe it will bring out the absolute best in me," said Macklin. "Wright is someone I've looked up to throughout my career but this is my time to make a big impact in the U.S. and this is the perfect fight to do that in."

One of boxing's most talented and inspiring fighters, 27-year-old Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero (28-1-1, 18 KO's) has built up an impressive boxing resume in winning the IBF Featherweight title in 2006, defending it several times, then moving up to junior lightweight and winning a World Championship there in 2009. His achievements are even more impressive when you consider that he has done all of it while helping to care for his wife Casey who was diagnosed with Leukemia in late 2007. In early 2010, Guerrero vacated his title in order to be at his wife's side as she went through treatment which thankfully sent her cancer into remission. With Casey on the mend, Guerrero returned to the ring, and re-established himself as one of the premier fighters in the world with wins over Roberto David Arrieta (TKO8), Cuban great Joel Casamayor (W10) and former U.S. Olympian Vicente Escobedo (W10). In 2011, he will seek a world title in a third division, but first must get past Katsidis who will is looking to make some lightweight noise of his own.

"The opportunity to face Michael Katsidis after our first fight did not happen is something that means a great deal to me," said Guerrero. "I appreciate the fact that Michael stepped up for this fight especially when other champions and contenders wouldn't. I think together we're going to put on a great fight for the fans."

The hard-charging pride of Toowoomba, Queensland, Australia, Michael Katsidis "The Great" (27-3, 22 KO's) is a thrill-a-minute warrior who has gained fans around the globe with his "go-for-broke" fighting style. Often compared to the late Arturo Gatti for his tendency to be involved in all-action, dramatic fights (as well as his tendency to get cut), Katsidis is an offensive machine who moves in one direction...forward at his opponents. A two-time holder of the WBO Interim Lightweight crown, the 30-year-old is currently riding a streak of memorable performances which includes a stoppage of Jesus "Matador" Chavez, a stirring win over Vicente Escobedo, a three-round blitz of then-undefeated Kevin Mitchell. Continuing that run, in his most recent bout, he took on Juan Manuel Marquez in a Fight of the Year candidate that saw Katsidis put the future Hall of Famer on the canvas before being halted in the ninth round by the Mexican superstar. Katsidis will look to make a comeback statement against Robert Guerrero on April 9.

"Robert Guerrero is an outstanding young fighter and our styles match up well for a fight everyone will remember," said Katsidis. "But I'm going to take him places he's never gone in the ring and I know I will come out with a big win."

Tickets for "Action Heroes" priced at $350, $250, $150, $75, $50 and $25 are on sale now and availableto charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

"Action Heroes" featuring Morales vs. Maidana in a 12-round junior welterweight bout, Wright vs. Macklin in a 10-round super middleweight fight and Guerrero vs. Katsidis in a 12-round lightweight battle is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Erik Morales' Box Latino and Universum Box Promotions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate, DeWalt Tools and Tres Generaciones. Wright vs. Macklin is presented in association with Winky Promotions and Guerrero vs. Katsidis is presented in association with Sampson Boxing. The bouts will be produced and distributed live on HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

The Morales vs. Maidana pay-per-view telecast, which begins at 9 p.m. ET / 6 p.m. PT, has a suggested retail price of $44.95, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View® and will be available to more than 71 million pay-per-view homes. The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD. HBO Pay-Per-View®, a division of Home Box Office, Inc., is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry. For Morales vs. Maidana fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

A stacked slate of undercard bouts, including the rest of the HBO Pay-Per-View broadcast, will be announced at a later date. For more information, visit www.goldenboypromotions.com, on Twitter at www.twitter.com/GoldenBoyBoxing, www.twitter.com/boxlatino, www.twitter.com/chinomaidana, www.twitter.com/TeamGuerrero or become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GoldenBoyBoxing.

Interview With Kevin Mitchell

(Mark Tibbs, Kevin Mitchell and Jimmy Tibbs at The Ultrachem TKO Gym In London)

By: Gianluca (Rio) Di Caro

15th May 2010 is a date etched deep in the memory of the tens of thousands of Dagenham’s Kevin Mitchell’s supporters. On that fateful night over twenty four thousand of those partisan fans packed in to Upton Park to watch their all conquering hero, who was firm favourite to clinch the interim WBO Lightweight title and to be just one step from achieving his goal of a full blown World title shot.

However it was not to be, as Kevin succumbed to the antipodean upsetter Michael ‘The Great’ Katsides and in doing so not only lost his coveted ‘O’ but also a World title shot in just three short rounds.

I caught up with Kevin at the Ultrachem TKO Gym in Canning Town and got to ask him about the Katsides fight, the on-off-on-off proposed April clash with John Murray and his future championship aspirations amongst other things.

Before we get onto the interview I have to say I was surprised that so many people were quick to write Kevin off, as a genuine contender, following the loss to Katsides and as such feel that it is appropriate to have a quick review of his excellent championship record.

Kevin’s first championship bout, against France’s Mohammed Medjadji for the vacant IBF Inter-Continental Super Featherweight title, was on the undercard of the Audley Harrison-Danny Williams Commonwealth title clash at the ExCel Arena in Docklands on the 10th December 2005.

Kevin, whose record stood at 16 (11 KO)-0, was on top form, he was quick, skillful and powerful. Throughout Kevin showed his superior boxing skills, but the tough Frenchman showed his durability by withstanding Kevin’s constant onslaughts.

In the sixth Kevin really stepped things up, bombarding Medjadji with vicious body shots that were clearly taking there toll on the Frenchman, so much so that with under a minute of the round to go referee Ian John Lewis had no option but to step in and stop the bout as Medjadji had stopped responding with punches of his own.

Just over two months later, on the 25th February 2006, Kevin was back at the ExCel to defend his newly won crown against, another French challenger, Youssouf Djibaba on the undercard of Danny Williams defense of his Commonwealth crown against Matt Skelton.

As before Kevin dominated the proceedings with his superior boxing skills, although Djibaba proved a harder opponent to finish than Medjadji. At the end of twelve hard fought rounds the judges cards read 118-108 and 119-109 (twice) in favour of Kevin.

Kevin’s second defense, and first bout as headliner, came just three months later, on the 13th May 2006 at York Hall in Bethnal Green. Kevin’s Bulgarian opponent Kirkor Kirkorov was a late replacement and had a reputation of being a bit of a spoiler.

Kevin came out fast and went straight to work on the body. Kirkorov defense was strong but Kevin persevered trying to work a breakthrough.

In the second round that breakthrough came, a wicked multi punch combo had Kirkor reeling, Kevin followed up with a vicious left hook to the body and Kirkorov dropped to one knee. Kirkorov survived the round but failed to show for the third.

Kevin had a ‘keep busy’ fight in July against Imad Ben Khalifa which lasted just 214 second, which set him up nicely for his third defense against Belarus’ Andrei Isaeu at the Grosvenor House in Mayfair, London on the 8th September 2006.  The fight was stopped after 1:37 of the eleven round due to cuts.

Just over a month later Kevin was back in action again, this time against Ghana’s George ‘Red Tiger’ Ashie for the vacant Commonwealth title. The fight went the full distance and see Kevin add the Commonwealth belt to his collection after the judges scorecards showed 116-113 (Twice) and 116-112 in his favour.

It was March 2007 before Kevin reentered the fray to defend his newly won Commonwealth crown against the tough South African Harry Ramogoadi.

Kevin gave Ramogoadi a pure boxing master class before finally finished him off in round six. Ramogoadi was sent to the canvas following his walking into a solid right hand.  Referee Terry O’Connor wisely dispensed with the count.

On the 14th July 2007 Kevin defended his IBF title for the fourth time, as well as challenging for the vacant WBO Inter-Continental super featherweight title, against Russian Alexander Khrulev at the O2 Arena in Greenwich.  It was another very short fight as Kevin knocked out Khrulev after less than a minute of the second round.

Another non-championship ‘filler fight’ with Edison Torres was Kevin’s first outing in 2008, a quick finish was the order of the day as Kevin stopped Torres early in the third round.

On the 8th March 2008 Kevin put his Commonwealth title on the line when he challenged Carl Johanneson for his British title.

Kevin started like a runaway train, taking the fight to Johanneson for the first few rounds. Mid way through the fight Johanneson started to turn the fight round but Kevin dug in and  eventually stop Johanneson in the ninth to add the Lonsdale Belt to his growing collection.

Three months later Kevin winged his way across the Atlantic to defend his WBO Inter-Continental Super Featherweight title, against Miami based Colombian Walter Estrada at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City.

I was living in Philadelphia at the time so this was one of the few of Kevin’s championship fights around this time that I actually got to see live.

Kevin seemed to struggle at times against the southpaw stance of Estrada, who wobbled Kevin badly as early as the second round. More trouble for Kevin in the fourth when a large swelling and a small cut appeared under his left eye.

After getting caught yet again by more head shots, Kevin responded with two good right hands to the head of Estrada. With just seconds to the bell to end the fifth, Estrada was sent to the canvas after Kevin let rip with a lightning fast right to the body. Estrada did beat the count  but the referee Lindsey Page stepped in to stop the fight.

Another couple of non-championship bouts followed in 2009, the first against Lanquaye Wilson and then Ruddy Encarnacion. Kevin stopped them both.

Next up was Kevin’s first championship bout at Lightweight, and if that wasn’t enough his opponent, for the vacant WBO Inter-Continental Lightweight title, was none other than Colombia’s Breidis Prescott -the man that KO’d Amir Khan in less than a minute just fifteen months earlier.

Mitchell was savvy and refused to be drawn into a war, instead he relied on his superior skills to frustrate and out box Prescott. Throughout the bout Kevin remained patient, picking his shots with care to totally dominate and win the bout by wide margins on all three judges' scorecards, 119-110, 118-111, 117-111.

Just a couple of months later, on the 13th February 2010 at the Wembley Arena, Kevin defended the WBO Inter-Continental belt against yet another Colombian Ignacio Mendoza.

Another short fight followed as Kevin knocked out Mendoza, with a peach of a right hand to the head, in just one-minute and 24-seconds of the second round.

Which brings us back to where we started, Kevin’s first career loss when he faced Michael Katsides at Upton Park back in May 2010. The fight has been well covered so I don’t feel the need to say any more - I’ll leave that to Kevin.


Rio - Hi Kevin, thank you for taking the time to talk with me today. Before I get on to boxing related questions I have a more personal one. Last year there was sad news that your five year old Cousin Mitchell Huth had been diagnosed with cancer, I wondered just how young Mitchell is doing these days?


Kevin Mitchell - He’s really well now, he popped round my mum’s house the other day, it was the first time I’d seen him in a while. He’s in a happy state, a good frame of mind. We’re gutted for him but he’s a fighter, his fighting the cancer so good on him.



Rio - Your planned fight with John Murray is up in the air at this point. Do you think there is still a chance it will go ahead or is it completely off the board?


Kevin - I don’t think it’s completely off the board, I think it’s still there. I’m in the gym getting ready for it.

I’m just waiting for a better offer of money for it. It’s all negotiable, Frank (Warren) has always done good by me, Frank’s always looked after me and I think he always will do, so just waiting for me and Frank sitting down and negotiating.



Rio - How did it feel coming out at Upton Park to the tens of thousands of fans, and knowing that they were there supporting you?


Kevin - It’s a crazy feeling, twenty-twenty two thousand standing in front of you, twenty four thousand or whatever was there. It was a mad feeling really. It was something else standing there and an even greater feeling to walk out and seeing all those people there. It made me feel really proud, you know I was really proud to be there.

With losing that though I felt I had let everyone down. Obviously I had done things wrong and want to put things right and make sure I make all the West Ham fans proud again. “



Rio - I know your fight with Michael Katsides has been well and truly covered but  what was your view of the fight?


Kevin - I think I knew in the dressing room I wasn’t right, not due to the weight, I’d cut corners because the way my life was at the time. I knew in the dressing room I wasn’t right, I think when you know in the dressing room you’re not right you know you’ve cut corners, you’ve missed out on runs and I was missing out on gym sessions down here, that’s not like me. I like to train everyday, be in the gym every day, train in the gym two or three times a day.

Afterwards I was just gutted that I got beat. If ever I get beat by a better man when I am on top form I’ll hold my hands up. I don’t mind that. But when you get beat due to yourself not being right. But down to not preparing yourself properly, with yourself messing around, you kick yourself in the backside. It’s give me a major lift as well to push myself harder and harder as I’m working now.



Rio - So does that mean you want a rematch with Michael Katsides?


Kevin -
Most definitely yeah. I want the fight against John Murray. Get it on with him, show Britain who is the best on the domestic scene, I know it’s me. Beat John Murray, show them I’m back, and then Katsides and then a World title fight.



Rio - You’ve held all the main domestic titles, but you very first title wasn’t domestic it was the IBF Inter-Continental. What made you decide to go straight for an International title?


Kevin - Well that was down to Frank Warren, Frank’s a brilliant promoter he’s the best at his game without a doubt. he said it gives you more of a lift than the Commonwealth title, It puts you in the World rankings.

He put me in there straight away, put me in with good fighters, good opponents. They were learning fights, I was doing twelve rounds. For me it was a good way to learn doing twelve rounds. I was just twenty one when I started fighting twelve rounders, it shows you don’t it.



Rio - You’ve had some great battles over your career, which holds the fondest memories or means the most to you?


Kevin - The most memorable was most definitely the British title fight against Carl Johanneson. I came out for the first four rounds steaming. Thought in a few rounds I was going to blow him out. I was completely wrong, I came unstuck in the sixth, I took the most punches I ever did in my whole career, I was out of it most of the sixth, I took a few big bombs. Without realising It, I was gone. I went back at him legless and caught hold of him again and got him out of there in the ninth.

Being in there in a fight like that is something I am likely to be again someday. Being in fights like that makes me proud and proves that I can get through hard times.



Rio - You’re trained by Jimmy and Mark Tibbs at the Ultrachem TKO Boxing Gym - Jimmy’s a legend in the sport and Mark is getting a reputation as a chip of the old block, so just how is having them co-training you going?


Kevin -
Working with Jimmy and Mark is brilliant. They’re so much a like. You’ve got Mark bringing in new things and you’ve got Jimmy who is old school. It’s brilliant.

I’m really happy here, It’s great being up here at the TKO Gym with all Jimmy and Johnny’s (Eames) fighters and that. One minute you’ve got David Haye, the next minute you have a kid in here or a cabbie in here. It’s a real happy gym. I’m really happy here, everyone’s here to work, whether it’s a cabbie or a World Champion like David Haye training and sparring in here.

Everyone that’s in here is here to work and train hard, there’s no spectators or nothing like that. The only people that will be watching are either a boxer, a trainer, a pad man or someone involved in the boxing. It’s a brilliant place. What they do here is brilliant.



Rio - I was here at the TKO Gym when you sparred Colin Lynes a couple of weeks ago - that was awesome to watch - does it help having such good sparring in-house?


Kevin - Yes most definitely, sparring with Colin Lynes, an ex world champion and a weight or so above me now, you can’t get better than being around guys like that. You’ve got Michael Grant and guys like that around to spar all the time.

You’ve got Nathan Weise in here. The quality fighters that come out of this gym is brilliant. One minute you’ll be sparring so so and the next time it’s someone different. You get to spar with guys with different styles it’s brilliant. It works sparring all the different styles.

I was speaking with Steve Bunce the other day and he said the gym’s always buzzing and there’s plenty of quality sparring. It is and that’s what you want in a gym.



Rio -
I know the fight with John Murray is still in negotiations, if it doesn’t go ahead who would you be looking to fight next?


Kevin - As in names it doesn’t bother me, although I want to fight Miguel Vazquez, the IBF Champion, I’ve been watching him, watching what he does, I’d love to have a little do with him.

I want to fight first and then a World title. Either Katsides and then a World title fight or John Murray then Katsides and then a World title fight.

I’m looking to be IBF World Champion.



Rio - You more or less covered my next question with that answer - What does the future hold for Kevin Mitchell?


Kevin - Yeah, what the future holds for me in boxing is, and the fight fans is, a big title in the World of Boxing. I definitely want to fight in Vegas in the future. I really fancy topping some big bills in Vegas, and yeah being World Champion and making lots of money.



Rio - Thank you so much for talking with me today, I wish you nothing but success and hope that you get the title shot you deserve.

Kevin - Thank you, and thanks to all the Boxing fans out there. 

JOE "THE FUTURE" HANKS SIGNS WITH STAR BOXING

FEBRUARY 22, 2011 - Fast rising and exciting heavyweight prospect, Joe "The Future" Hanks (15-0, 10KO's) has signed an exclusive long-term agreement with Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing.  The New Jersey native Hanks, who made his pro-debut on a DeGuardia promoted card, now looks to continue his march towards a heavyweight world title under the Star banner.
"Ever since Joe made his pro-debut with us I have kept a close eye on him," stated DeGuardia.  "Right from the start you could see that he had a lot of raw talent and power, to go with his great size.   Joe has grown and improved from each fight, and we feel that he will only continue to do so as begins to make the transition from hot prospect, to a true top-ten contender."
Hanks agent Michael Borao agrees, "I see Joe distinguishing himself from all other heavyweight prospects and breaking into the world ratings within the next 12-18 months.  We are happy to have Star Boxing on board, helping Joe on his journey to a world title."
After having his first three fights as a pro, two of which were on Star Boxing cards, in New York, Hanks took his show out West and has recorded his last twelve victories while fighting in the state of California.  Now DeGuardia, who regularly stages events throughout New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut, is looking to further develop Hanks home fan-base back on the East Coast.
"Joe is from New Jersey, but his last twelve fights have all been on the West Coast.  Now that we have Joe not only are we looking to develop him into a future champion, but we also want to begin broadening his fan base back here in the tri-state area.  We are really excited to be adding Joe, who is one of the top prospects in the area, to our roster."
Look for an announcement as to the date when Hanks will be making his Star Boxing debut very soon.

Monday, February 21, 2011

Happy Birthday Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez

NEW YORK, NY (Feb. 21, 2011) World Boxing Council (“WBC”) Emeritus and The Ring Magazine middleweight champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez celebrates his 36th birthday today.
Martinez (46-2-2, 25 KOs) is preparing for his March 12th showdown against reigning  World Boxing Organization (“WBO”) junior middleweight champion Sergiy “Razor” Dzinziruk (37-0, 23 KOs) in the 12-round main event for the vacant WBC Diamond middleweight title, live on HBO World Championship Boxing (10:30 PM/ET start), from MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Connecticut.
Please join DiBella Entertainment in wishing 2010 Fighter of the Year Sergio Martinez a very happy birthday.
“I’m happy to be celebrating my 36th birthday while I’m in the prime of my boxing career,” Martinez said from his training camp in Oxnard, California. “I’d like to thank everyone for sending me birthday wishes and I’m really looking forward to my March 12th fight on HBO.”
More than half of the tickets for “Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk,” which is being presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Banner Promotions, have been sold and fans are strongly advised to purchase tickets before the show sells-out.
Tickets are priced at $450.00, $250.00, $125.00, $75.00, and $50.00 and on sale through the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.mgmatfoxwoods.com, by calling the MGM Grand at Foxwoods at 1-866-646-0609, or in person at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. 

Undefeated Red Hot Prospect Javier Fortuna Fighting For WBC Youth Title March 12 At MGM Grand At Foxwoods

NEW YORK, NY (Feb. 21, 2011) Unbeaten Dominican knockout specialist Javier “El Abejon” Fortuna will be fighting for the vacant World Boxing Council (“WBC”) Youth Featherweight Championship on the “Diamond Elite” card, headlined by 2010 Fighter of the Year Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez, March 12 at MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Connecticut.

Martinez (46-2-2, 25 KOs), the reigning WBC Emeritus and The Ring Magazine middleweight champion, takes on World Boxing Organization (“WBO”) junior middleweight champion Sergiy “Razor” Dzinziruk (37-0, 23 KOs) in the 12-round main event for the vacant WBC Diamond middleweight title.

In the 10-round co-feature showcasing  ethnic rivals, “Celtic War” matches exciting middleweights Andy Lee (24-1, 18 KOs) of Ireland and Scotland’s Craig McEwan (19-0, 10 KOs) in a battle with potential world title shot implications for the winner.

Martinez vs. Dzinziruk and Lee vs. McEwan will air live on HBO World Championship Boxing starting at 10:30 PM/ET, 7:30 PM/PT.

The 20-year-old Fortuna (13-0-0-1NC, 10 KOs) faces Derrick Wilson (8-1-2, 2 KOs) in the 8-round, chief off-television bout of the evening. Fortuna is handled by the same advisor-head trainer combination, Sampson Lewkowicz and Gabriel Sarmiento, respectively, as his stable-mate, Martinez.  

“Sampson has discovered another gem,” promoter Lou DiBella said. “He’s an amazing judge of talent. Gabriel ranks among the top boxing trainers in the world today. He told me Javier is going to be the next Sergio Martinez and I can see why he feels that way. His last fight left everyone’s jaw dropped.”

In his last fight this past December, the Dominican prodigy knocked-out previously undefeated Victor Valenzuela (8-0) in the opening round of their fight in New York City, marking Fortuna’s U.S. debut.  

Past WBC Youth featherweight champions have included current WBC lightweight king Humberto Soto, former WBC featherweight title holder Rudy Lopez, and world title challengers Tommy Browne, Eduardo Escobedo and Billy Dibb.

“Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk” is being presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Banner Promotions. Lee vs. McEwan is being presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Golden Boy Promotions. 

Tickets are priced at $450.00, $250.00, $125.00, $75.00, and $50.00 and on sale through the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. Tickets can also be purchased online at www.mgmatfoxwoods.com, by calling the MGM Grand at Foxwoods at 1-866-646-0609, or in person at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. 

Sunday, February 20, 2011

Donaire Ends Bout In A Flash; Jones Defeats Soto-Karass Again


The "Filipino Flash" Nonito Donaire (26-1, 18 KO's) scored a scintillating 2nd round, one-punch knockout versus Fernando Montiel (44-3-2, 34 KO's), capturing the WBC & WBO Bantamweight titles. Donaire, 28, gave Montiel, 31, problems with his high-caliber speed and agility, landing a crisp left hook over Montiel's right cross that misfired early in round one. The same sequence would repeat itself later in round two with disastrous effects for Montiel. He displayed a great deal of trouble getting close to the lightning-quick Donaire, who found his range by utilizing feints and employing superior lateral movement.

In round two, Montiel missed with a right cross again before Donaire landed a powerful counter-left hook to his head, only this time it was more precise and damaging. After Montiel was struck, he dropped instantly to the canvas, his legs twitching rapidly as he lay flat on his back. Miraculously, Montiel got back up ahead of the ten count, however, he was clearly out on his feet. Yet, referee Russell Mora gave Montiel a chance, although Donaire vigorously charged forward, connecting with a clean left hook - straight right combination to Montiel's chin, prompting the bout to be halted. Official time of the stoppage was 2:25.

Donaire continues to put on his best performances in his biggest fights. Since 2007, Donaire has stopped nine of his last ten opponents, including a fifth-round TKO win over a previously unbeaten Vic Darchinyan, a victory that might be Donaire's second career best when compared to tonight's showing. Rafael Concepcion, who lost a twelve-round unanimous decision to Donaire in 2009, was the only fighter to the last the distance with him in that time span. Undoubtedly, Donaire has now proven that he belongs among the discussion of the top pound-for-pound fighters in the world with another stellar appearance.

Jones Defeats Soto-Karass Again

For the second time, Philadelphia's Mike Jones (24-0, 18 KO's) defeated an extremely durable Jose Soto-Karass (24-6-3, 16 KO's) via twelve-round unanimous decision in a rigorous welterweight bout. Official scores were 117-111, 116-112 and 115-113. With the victory, Jones retained his NABA, WBO-NABO and WBC Continental Americas welterweight titles.

Soto-Karass controlled the pace of round one, as Jones readily backpedaled to avoid his constant pressure.

In round two, Soto-Karass scored with a right uppercut to Jones' body, but Jones started dictating the flow of the round with his methodical left jab and slick counter punching ability.

Soto-Karass suffered a wide cut on the corner of his left eye in round three, resulting from an accidental clash of heads. However, referee Kenny Bayless, who is unable to see HBO's instant replay, ruled the cut was caused by a punch. Later, Jones connected with some sharp right uppercuts. Soto-Karass also received a minor cut on the corner of his right eye.

Soto-Karass relentlessly pressured Jones again, landing solid rights to his body and head during round four.

Jones answered in the fifth round, scoring with distinct left hook - right uppercut combinations.

Jones was controlling the action in round six when Soto-Karass hurt him with a sound right to the face. As a result, Jones received an abrasion on his left cheek slightly under his eye. Although Soto-Karass successfully landed that punch, he was starting to fatigue and appeared one-dimensional.

Soto-Karass' punch output significantly dropped by round eight, enabling Jones to circle to his left easily, and land a series of right and left uppercuts.

Jones slowed Soto-Karass' body attack in round nine, repeatedly striking the 28-year-old Mexican warrior in the body with hard right-hand shots. After that, Soto-Karass and Jones' foreheads collided fiercely, but neither man endured a cut.

The ringside doctor looked carefully at Soto-Karass' eye in round ten, but allowed him to continue fighting. By this point, Soto-Karass was absorbing enormous punishment from Jones, who landed clean, sharp punches at will.

Soto-Karass, bloodied and exhausted in round eleven, was sent into the ropes after Jones hurt him with a definitive right uppercut to the face.

Jones calmly boxed in the twelfth round, as a gassed Soto-Karass courageously brought steady pressure until the final bell.

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