By David Finger
The city of Cleveland, Ohio prepares to gear up for one of the most exciting fight cards to hit the Buckeye state this year as Hector “Macho” Camacho Jr. looks to resurrect his career in ten round junior middleweight fight to be broadcast on live on Pay-Per-View. The card, which is already taking on a spirited “Puerto Rico versus Puerto Rico” tone, features Camacho Jr. (48-3-1, 27 KOs) as he takes on the tough Puerto Rico contender Israel “Pito” Cardona (36-9, 28 KOs) in a ten round bout for the vacant WBC Caribbean Boxing Federation (CABOFE) light middleweight title . Although Camacho’s weight has been an issue in the past, it appears as if the slick Puerto Rican has rededicated himself to the sport and is primed to make a run for a world title fight at junior middleweight. Most boxing insiders felt that Camacho’s best weight is at 154 or less, a theory that was given a great deal of credence when he won an impressive decision over Sammy Sparkman in his last fight (in which he weighed in at 157 pounds). With a dominant win over Cardona, Camacho would not only capture a WBC title, but could find himself in the top ten of the WBC world rankings.
“We are pretty excited about this fight,” commented promoter Zef Ramirez, “Camacho knows this is his hour, and he wants to silence his critics and put himself back on the map as one of the best fighters in the world.”
However, few are counting out the cagy veteran from Hartford, Connecticut. He has won two IBO world titles and an NABF title in his career, as well as holding the USBA lightweight title for over two years (winning the title in impressive fashion over Ivan Robinson back in 1997). Although Cardona is ten years removed from his last world title fight, he recognizes that a win over Camacho could put him in line for one more championship fight, something not lost on Camacho or Ramirez.
“I understand this is not a cakewalk for Hector,” added Ramirez, “if he brings his A-game, he should win, but Cardona has shown time and time again that he can win the big fight.”
The undercard is also shaping up to be a classic, featuring local prospect Ronald “The American Dream” Johnson (10-1, 3 KOs) in the co-main event in a ten round fight for both the WBC USNBC light heavyweight title and the WBF world light heavyweight title as he takes on tough Billy Bailey (9-4, 3 KOs). Although Bailey doesn’t have the flashiest record out there, his last two loses were by split and majority decision to prospects Anthony Ferrante and Roger Cantrell respectively. And few are questioning his abilities after he starched Brian Cohen back in January to win the WBC USNBC title. A win for Johnson would put him on the map in the light heavyweight division as a future contender, but many insiders recognize that this is not going to be a cakewalk.
“I recognize that Johnson has the tools to become a real force in the division,” commented Ramirez, “but his first step to becoming a contender is to get past Bailey. The thing is Bailey has shown that when the going gets tough, he comes out swinging. I am predicting an all out war.”
Rounding off the PPV broadcast is a ten round swing bout featuring one of the most talked about prospects ever to come out of Cleveland: Mickey Bey Jr. (12-0, 7 KOs). Although an opponent has yet to be determined, the fight will be a ten rounder for the vacant NABO super featherweight title, indicating this may very well be the first major test for the young prospect.
Also on the card is junior welterweight prospect Marvin Cordova Jr. (20-1-1, 11 KOs) as he looks to rebound from his first defeat back in May as he takes on fellow prospect Earnest Johnson (18-3-0, 7 KOs) in an eight round fight. After his loss to Pilipino contender Dennis Laurente, Cordova has rededicated himself to the sport, and has shown flashes of brilliance in the gym. But Cordova has picked a dangerous opponent for his first fight back in Johnson. Johnson is considered by many a future contender in his own right, and his only three losses were close decisions to future hall-of-famer Zab Judah and contenders Earnest Zavala and Rogelio Castaneda Jr.
“I know we are putting Marvin in a pretty tough fight here,” commented Ramirez, “but it’s time for him to take his place among the boxing elite in the junior welterweight division, and the only way to do that is to fight the best out there and beat them. I am confident that if Marvin shows Earnest Johnson his A-game he will emerge victorious.”
Rounding off the card is cruiserweight contender Aaron Williams (19-2-1, 13 KO’s) against a TBA in an eight round fight. Popular Colorado-based Abel Perry (10-3, 3 KO’s) looks to establish himself as a legitimate prospect after his highly disputed loss to contender Donald Camarena back in January by taking on fellow border-line prospect Jay Krupp (12-2, 5 KO’s) in a classic crossroads fight. Ohio fans will probably see the winner continue his climb into contention while the loser will probably slip into journeyman status. Light middleweight prospect Dante Moore (4-0, 3 KO’s) takes on fellow prospect Julius Kennedy (6-1, 3 KO’s) in a four round fight and super middleweight prospect Julius McPherson (7-0, 4 KO’s) will take on a TBA in a four round fight to start the show off.
The venue for this event will be at the Wolstein Center in downtown Cleveland Ohio. The event will be on live on Pay-Per-View. This event is promoted by. Zeferino Entertainment and AD&CO Events LLC, The fight will be sponsored by www.fmsnevada.com, FMS, LLC and “Put Down The Guns And Pick Up The Gloves” (a foundation formed by Ronald Johnson, to give kids an alternative to gang violence). Tickets for this event available at Ticket Master, or can be purchased at the Wolstein Center Arena Box Office (at 1-800-745-3000).