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Steve Molitor 121.6 vs Takalani Ndlovu 121.2
(IBF jr featherweight championship)
Greg Kielsa 239 vs Neven Pajkic 240.6
(Canadian heavyweight title)
Ana Julaton 120.8 vs Lisa Brown 122
(WBA female super bantamweight title)
Justin Fountain 145.2 vs Fabian Ramirez 147
Jason Douglas 165.8 vs Stephan Boyd 165.6
Felix Mercedes 144 vs Ivan Flores142.4
Venue: Rama Casino, Rama Ontario, Canada
Promoter: Orion Sports Management
By Graham Houston
When old champions come back it is often with unhappy outcomes. The latest to try is Erik Morales, who, at 33, is giving the game another try, this time in the welterweight division.
Morales, a champion at 122, 126 and 130 pounds, was last seen in the ring almost three years ago when losing a tough fight to David Diaz in Chicago. Morales fought well, even scoring a knockdown, but Diaz was a bit too strong and persistent for him in a gruelling fight.
I have to admit that Morales surprised me in that fight. He had more left in him than I thought would be the case. Still, his decision to retire seemed the right one. This was his fourth loss in a row, including consecutive stoppage defeats against Manny Pacquiao.
On Saturday, Morales meets Jose Alfaro, the former lightweight champion from Nicaragua, in a 12-rounder for the WBC’s International welterweight title.
Morales will have trained down to 147 pounds after packing on poundage during his layoff, while Alfaro is moving up two weight divisions. It is difficult to say which man will be the more effective at welterweight.
Alfaro is a good puncher but has not always shown a sturdy chin. He lost his lightweight title in Tokyo when Yusuke Kobori outpunched him in a fierce battle that saw each man hurt before a left hook from the Japanese fighter sent Alfaro sprawling in the third. After three wins in a row, Alfaro was disappointing in his last fight when losing in 10 rounds to Antonio DeMarco. It was as if Alfaro had become slower and even easier to hit than in the past, although DeMarco’s height, reach and southpaw stance might have played a big part in the Nicaraguan boxer’s struggling performance.
The Morales camp will have studied this fight and decided that they are getting Alfaro at the right time. Any fight is a gamble for Morales, though, after his long layoff and the hard slog to lose weight and get himself into boxing shape. He isn’t an old fighter as such at 33 but he has been in many hard fights and taken a great deal of punishment. The three years away from boxing might have rejuvenated Morales to some degree, but no one can be sure how much of his one-time ability he retains, nor how well he will be able to take a punch after the lengthy break from boxing.
Morales has fought at a much higher level than Alfaro, of course, and he is boxing at home in Mexico. He might be able to win simply on heart, pride and experience. Alfaro says he has trained very well, but he is coming into the contest after getting outclassed and stopped in his last fight and this might have had a negative psychological effect.
Anything can happen in this fight, but I will go with Morales to reach back and find sufficient form to scrape through with a win, perhaps by stoppage late in the fight.
By Graham Houston
Andre Dirrell, who failed narrowly to win the WBC super middleweight title from Carl Froch in the U.K. last October, will be on home ground in Michigan when he takes on Arthur Abraham in the second-round stage of Showtime’s Super Six tournament on Saturday. Fighting at the Joe Louis Arena in Detroit won’t be of much help to Dirrell, though, if he doesn’t let his hands go more than he did when losing the split decision to Froch. The Froch fight looked winnable for Dirrell but he let the British fighter bully him — and perhaps intimidate him, too. If Dirrell has learned from that experience he has a chance of winning on Saturday. It is up to Dirrell. Being elusive without throwing punches won’t get the job done. (more…)
Story by Brady Crytzer
Georges “Rush” St. Pierre is enjoying a wild ride. Considered one of the best pound for pound fighters on the planet, as well as one of the best athletes in any sport, the man affectionately known as GSP takes being the best one day at a time . . . Click here for more
By Ron Jackson
Nkosinathi Joyi won the IBF mini-flyweight belt when he outclassed champion Raul Garcia of Mexico at the new International Convention Centre in East London on Friday night. In an outstanding performance Joyi 21-0; 15 controlled the fight from outside with his educated southpaw right jab and rocked the Mexican’s head back throughout the 12 rounds to win with margins of 119-109 on two cards and 118-110 on the third. (more…)
By Rick Scharmberg at ringside
Ahmed “Baby Face” Kaddour, Omar Sheika, and Terrance “The Heat” Cauthen all registered victories last night at the sold-out Hamilton Manor in Hamilton, NJ. Kaddour (22-2-1, 9 KOs) dominated Jerome Ellis (12-11-2, 10 KOs) over eight rounds in the junior middleweight main event. In twin co-features, Omar Sheika (29-9, 20 KOs) overcame a very slow start to batter game Garrett Wilson (7-4, 2 KOs) and stop him in the fourth round of a scheduled eight round cruiserweight bout, and Terrance Cauthen (34-6, 9 KOs) rode his right hook to an eight round unanimous decision over power hitter Isam Khalil (15-2-2, 9 KOs) in a welterweight bout. The eight-bout card was promoted by Nedal’s Promotions. (More to come)
Ringside by Gerardo Martinez
Tonight at Isleta Resort & Casino: Repeating her success of the first fight, Holly Holm (26-1-3, 7 KOs) defended her WIBA super welterweight title with a ten-round unanimous decision over Chevelle Hallback (27-6-2, 11 KOs). Scores were 99-92 and 98-92 twice. In the co-main event, Victoria Cisneros (4-8-2) pulled off the majority decision victory over Terri Blair (11-15-3, 6 KOs). Scores were 77-75, 77-76 and 76-76. In the top undercard bout, Albuquerque’s David Proa (7-2 7 KOs) was upset by Jonathon Arias (10-6, 8 KOs), who won a majority decision with scores of 58-56 twice and 57-57. (more…)
In the lightweight main event Vincente Escobedo (22-2, 14 KOs) got back in the win column with an impressive third round knockout of journeyman Carlos Urias (43-24, 32 KOs) on Friday night at the Auditorio Plaza La Condesa in Mexico City, Mexico. The bout was competitively fought for the first two rounds but in round three Escobedo broke through with a pinpoint combination that put Urias down. Urias beat the count but moments later Escobedo put him down again with a series accurate solid shots to the head. The referee immediately waved off the bout without a count. The bout was the first for Escobedo since his decision loss to world champion Michael Katsidis September 2009.
Dante Jardon (12-1, 12 KOs) stopped David Rodela (14-3-2, 6 KOs) in round three of their WBC Youth super featherweight title bout. Jardon was a like a human punching machine as he threw punches non stop from the opening bell to the end of the fight. Though Jardon entered the bout winning all of his fights by knockout Rodela was a considerable step up for him. Jardon showed his power was for real as he hurt Rodela badly with a left hook in round two and moments later put him down with the same punch. Rodela beat the count but Jardon jumped right on him unleashing power shots to the head and body. Fortunately for Rodela the bell saved him but not for long. Jardon immediately pounced on Rodela at the start of round three unleashing more power punches punctuated by an uppercut that put Rodela down again where he was counted out by the referee.
Ringside by Rocco Morales
Photos by ‘Big’ Joe Miranda
In a final tune-up fight prior to his scheduled May 22nd title challenge for the IBF bantamweight belt of Yohnny Perez, IBF No. 6 bantamweight contender, Abner Mares, took on tough journeyman fighter Felipe Almanza at Club Nokia in Los Angeles.
Almanza proved a lot tougher than his record indicated, coming in undefeated in his last eight fights and offering a very awkward style for Mares, as well as some very rough tactics . . . Click here for more
By Francisco Salazar at ringside
Demetrius Hopkins put in a dominating performance over Jesse Feliciano on Thursday night in his first fight in almost a year and a half. However, according to Hopkins, he was not as pleased as he wanted to be with his performance.
“It was just ring rust,” was Hopkins’ answer after the fight . . . click here for more
By Chris Royle at ringside
Welterweight Matthew Hatton (39-4-2, 15 KOs) claimed the vacant European 147lb title with a twelve round unanimous decision over former world title challenger Gianluca Branco (43-3-1, 22 KOs) on Friday night at the Goresbrook Leisure Centre in Dagenham, England. Scores were 117-111, 115-113 and 116-112. (more…)
Tomorrow (Saturday, March 27th) Cuban superstar Yuriorkis “El Ciclon” Gamboa will defend his WBA featherweight championship in Germany for the first time against unbeaten Jonathan Victor Barros from Argentina. ARENA and SAT.1 present “Ran Boxen” live from Sporthalle Hamburg. At today’s weigh-in both contenders brought exactly the limit of 126 lbs. For more details and photos click here…
All the action in images from today’s “Title Night” weigh-in at the Hard Rock in Las Vegas: Marcos Maidana vs. Victor Cayo, Ali Funeka vs. Joan Guzman, and more. For a slideshow of today’s scale action by photographer Chris Cozzone, click here
All the shots from the UFC 111 weigh-in today at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J., including Georges St. Pierre vs. Dan Hardy; Frank Mir vs. Shane Carwin. For a slideshow of today’s scale action by photographer Ed Mulholland, click here
Nkosinathi Joyi defeated Raul Garcia via unanimous decision (by scores of 119-109 twice and 118-110) to win the IBF mini-flyweight title in East London, South Africa earlier today. More to come…
By Francisco Salazar
Junior welterweight champion Timothy Bradley wanted to make clear his intentions behind his June 19th bout against unbeaten Luis Carlos Abregu. “No one wants to fight me and I have to stay busy.” Seems like an honest answer from Bradley, who will be fighting for the third time in a row at the Agua Caliente Casino Resort Spa in Rancho Mirage, CA, just a stone’s throw away from his hometown of Palm Springs. It will be the first fight for Bradley since signing a network deal with HBO. Bradley successfully defended his title against Anthony Peterson in December, winning a wide, yet competitive 12 round decision. Co-promoter Gary Shaw and Thompson Boxing Promotions had looked at other champions at 140 pounds, even at Paul Malignaggi as possible opponents for Bradley. When nothing panned out, Bradley decided a move up a weight class was necessary. “I’m going to try 147 pounds. Manny (Pacquiao) shows that he can do it at 147 pounds.” (more…)
Robert Kravantka at the scales
From the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. for tomorrow night’s UFC 111, live on pay-per-view beginning at 10pm ET / 7pm PT. Fans can also tune in to Spike TV at 9pm ET / 6pm PT to see live UFC 111 preliminary bouts.
Main Event – UFC Welterweight Championship
Georges St-Pierre 170 vs Dan Hardy 170
Co-Main Event – Interim UFC Heavyweight Championship
Frank Mir 265 vs Shane Carwin 265
Fabricio Camoes 155 vs Kurt Pellegrino 155
Ben Saunders 169 vs Jon Fitch 171
Mark Bocek 154 vs Jim Miller 155
Prelims on Spike
Rory Markham 177 vs Nate Diaz 171
Matt Brown 170 vs Ricardo Almeida 170
Undercard (may not be broadcast)
Tomasz Drwal 185 vs Rousimar Palhares 186
Jared Hamman 205 vs Rodney Wallace 206
Greg Soto 170 vs Matt Riddle 170
Ulises Solis 108 vs Bert Batawang 107.5
(IBF jr flyweight eliminator)
Giovani Segura 112 vs Ronald Ramos 112
Venue: Plaza Pueblo Antiguo, Ensenada, BC
Promoter. Top Rank/Zanfer
TV: Fox Sports Español and TV Azteca (Mexico)
By Gabriel F. Cordero
WBA bantamweight world champion Anselmo “Chemito” Moreno of Panama managed to make the 118lb bantamweight limit as did Venezuelan WBA Interim world champion Nehomar Cermeño, at their weigh-in carried out today at the Polideportivo Jose Maria Vargas in La Guaira, Venezuela.
Jorge Linares 130 vs Francisco Lorenzo 129
Johan Pérez 140 vs Azael Cosio 140
Vanessa Medrano 118 vs Ogleidis “La Niña” Suarez 124
Gusmyr Perdomo 177 vs Darmel Castillo 177
Promoters Don King and Ahikiko Honda arrived in Venezuela at the invitation of promoter Boxtrack. The card, billed as “El Desafio” (The Challenge), will take place Saturday night and be televised internationally by Meridano Sports and DirecTV.
Click here for more photos…
Just in: Tomorrow night’s 12-rounder between Joan Guzman (29-0-1, 17 KOs) and Ali Funeka (30-2-3, 25 KOs) is still on – but it will not be for the IBF lightweight title, at least for one of the fighters. Earlier today, Guzman weighed in nine pounds heavy, at 144, while Funeka made weight at 135. A deal was struck between camps allowing the fight to go on – providing that Guzman does not weigh more than 150 lbs. tomorrow morning at 7 a.m. If Funeka defeats the overweight Guzman, he will also be allowed to bring the IBF lightweight title home to South Africa.
From the Hard Rock’s Wasted Space nightclub in Las Vegas for tomorrow night’s Golden Boy-promoted, HBO-televised “Title Night” card:
Marcos Maidana 140 vs. Victor Cayo 140
* For the WBA Interim Super Lightweight title
Ali Funeka 135 vs. Joan Guzman 144*
* Guzman an astounding nine pounds overweight. Has two hours to lose nine pounds. The vacant IBF Lightweight title will most likely not be at stake – if the fight happens at all.
Daniel Jacobs 166.5 vs. Jose Rodriguez 164.5
Jermell Charlo 149 vs. Gerardo Prieto 148
Omar Figueroa 137 vs. Edgar Portillo 136
Diego Chavez 147 vs. Edvan Dos Santos 150
By Pasi Taavitsainen at ringside
Unbeaten WBA #12 heavyweight Robert Helenius moved to 12-0 with 7 KOs after an eight round unanimous decision over Gbenga “Bang Bang” Oloukun (17-4, 10 KOs) on Friday night at the Töölö Sporthall in Helsinki, Finland. Scores were 79-76, 78-77 and 77-75. Helenius showed a good jab and was a bit more active. Oloukun was strong and hit hard, but Helenius was just a little more effective. No knockdowns in the bout. The decision verdict breaks a string of six consecutive KO victories for Helinius, including an impressive eighth-round stoppage of former WBO heavyweight champion Lamon Brewster. More photos…
In preparation for his April 17th IBF world title fight against Lucian Bute, Edison Pantera Miranda has been training in Van Nuys, CA with his new trainer Joe Goossen. The two have now been working together for nine months, and Miranda claims his training is going perfect. “I connected with Joe the first day we met, and I have seen myself get better and better over the months. I believe Joe has been the missing ingredient for me to get the belt. Now that he’s in my corner, I realize I can achieve whatever I want.” (more…)
The World Boxing Association has rejected a request for a rematch made on behalf of former champion, Gabriel Campillo, who lost his WBA light heavyweight title to Beibut Shumenov by a 12-round majority decision this past January 29. Shumenov will next fight official challenger Vyacheslav Uzelkov.
Erik Morales 147 vs Jose Alfaro 147
Hugo Hernan Garay 175 vs Chris Henry 175
(WBA light heavyweight title eliminator)
David Rodriguez 246.4 vs Daniel Dos Santos 224.8
Venue: La Explanada Del Palacio Municipal, Monterrey, Nuevo Leon, Mexico
Promoter: KO Entertainment and Box Latino
Pay-Per-View Information: Distributed in the United States 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, TVN and DISH Network, for a suggested retail price of $29.95.
Click here for more photos…
It’s Fight Glove Friday!
Enter for your chance to win a pair of Andre “The Matrix” Dirrell custom 1910 pro fight gloves. No purchase necessary. Click here.
Kingsley Ikeke will make the first defense of his North American Boxing Association super middleweight title against Zane Marks on April 3 at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma. Ikeke, currently ranked No. 10 by the World Boxing Association, captured the NABA crown with a 10-round split decision over Mark Woolnough on Aug. 29, 2009 and brings a record of 26-3-0 with 14 KOs into the 10-round championship bout. A native of Nigeria who now calls Los Angeles home, Ikeke has won three consecutive fights since dropping back-to-back bouts to current WBC light heavyweight champion Jean Pascal and top-ranked super middleweight Arthur Abraham. Both defeats came in 2005 with the latter being for the vacant IBF middleweight title. The 25-year-old Zane Marks is 17-4-1 with 10 KOs.
Highlighting the five-bout undercard will be undefeated heavyweight George Foreman III (6-0-0). Foreman, the son of former world champion George Foreman, has scored all six of his professional wins by knock out, including five first-round KOs. The 27-year-old Foreman will meet Dale Mitchell in the four-round contest. The first bout is scheduled for 7 p.m. Tickets are available at the Emerald Queen Casino box office and any TicketMaster location.
Jayson Vélez 121.2 vs. Pedro Rincón 122
Abner Cotto 135 vs. Roberto Acevedo 137
Albert Cruz Jr. 135 vs. Kevin Arce 136
Emanuel Rivera 118.7 vs. Angel López 119.7
Miguel Robles 120 vs. Eduardo Meléndez 120
Jonuel Tapia 154.2 vs. Carlos García 153.5
Manuel Ramos 114 vs. José Guardiola 115
Venue: Coliseo Roger L. Mendoza, Caguas, Puerto Rico
Promoter: Promociones Miguel Cotto
Click here for more photos…
WBC President Jose Sulaiman has expressed concern on the free way that boxing organizations are using the approval of interim championships, when they should be used strictly when a champion leaves a title inactive for medical or legal problems. He plans to present a recommendation to the WBC Governors at the coming 48th annual convention to be held in Cancun, Mexico, from November 7 to the 13, in regards to instituting a WBC silver world championship, in substitution of an interim championship “that does not represent a real title, when it is approved only for a fight without real significance.”
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