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Boxing back in Baltimore

By Gary “Digital” Williams

The Baltimore Pro Boxing card that will take place on Saturday, May 8 at Du Burns Arena in Baltimore is an interesting mix of fighters returning after a long absence and boxers making their pro debuts. The main event, however, is a classic matchup of youth versus experience. Undefeated Catonsville, MD cruiserweight Steve “Show Stealer” Wheeler will battle veteran Ariel “Iron” Espinal of Brooklyn, NY in the six-round main event.

Wheeler (4-0, three KO’s) has scored knockouts in the last three bouts (his last two were first-round KO’s) but will be in a scheduled six-rounder for the first time in his young pro career. Espinal (8-13-3, four KO’s) has won two of his last four, both wins coming by TKO. Espinal, however, has yet to beat a Beltway Boxer, dropping recent decisions to Scott Sigmon, Julius Kennedy and Alexander Johnson.

One of the boxers returning to action after a long absence will be Baltimore heavyweight Jed “The Punisher” Phipps, who steps in the ring for the first time since June of 2007. Phipps (17-7, 10 KO’s) was a promising heavyweight when he debuted in 2002. Phipps won his first nine bouts before being stopped in back-to-back bouts by Troy Beets and Brian Minto. Phipps seemed to right his ship by winning six of his next seven before losing his last four, three by knockout. The other loss in that stretch was a disqualification loss for the USBO Heavyweight title in August of 2006, where Phipps was disqualified for excessive spitting of his mouthpiece.

Phipps’s opponent will be Maurice Winslow of Wilson, NC (3-11-1, three KO’s). All three of Winslow’s knockouts have come in Beltway locations.

Also returning to the ring after a two-and-a-half year absence is Randallstown, MD light heavyweight Dalemanik Robeson-El. Robeson-El was a highly-touted amateur who made his pro debut in December of 2006 and scored a third-round TKO over Michael Ciccone in Pikesville, MD. Roberson-El will battle the debuting Ken Rosser of Philadelphia, PA.

Undefeated Baltimore super middleweight “The Golden Greek” Elias Bouloubassis also returns to action when faces Kelvin Kibler of South Carolina in a four-round contest. Bouloubassis (4-0-4, four KO’s) has not fought since stopping Joey Montgomery in the first round on October 16 at Du Burns. Kibler (0-1-1) was stopped in the third round by Mikael Zewski on February 27 in Atlanta, GA.

Also returning to action is Severna Park, MD middleweight Shelly Seivert (4-1, one KO), who’s last bout was on April 10, 2009 against Rachel Clark at Du Burns. Seivert won a four-round majority decision. On this card, Seivert will face the debuting Tori Nelson of Alexandria, VA.

Making his Baltimore-area debut is hometown junior middleweight Mischa Christensen (1-0). Christensen made his pro debut on December 12, 2009 in Ransom, WVA and defeated Jamil Ramsquer by four-round majority decision. Christensen’s opponent will be Cambridge, MD’s Dontre King (1-7-1) who will be looking to break a five-bout losing streak. King’s last outing was a tough four-round unanimous decision loss to Todd Wilson on the March 20th Du Burns card.

Rounding out the card will be a battle of two debuting Baltimore heavyweights — Mark Orndorff and Riley Brooks.

For more info on the best boxing in the world, visit www.boxingalongthebeltway.blogspot.com

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