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By Scott Ploof and Alex Dombroff at ringside
Cruiserweight Troy Ross (18-1, 13 KOs) scored a sudden fourth round TKO over Ehinomen “Hino” Ehikhamenor (12-4, 7 KOs) to earn the Season Four Contender championship on Wednesday night at the MGM Grand Theater at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, Connecticut. A competitive fight ended when a massive right-left combination by Ross left Ehikhamenor unable to defend himself in a corner forcing referee Steve Smoger to stop it at the 2:00 mark.
Cruiserweight Rico Hoye (20-2, 15 KOs) took a one-sided eight round unanimous decision over Akinyemi “AK” Laleye (10-1, 5 KOs) in the Contender semi-windup. Hoye outworked Laleye in a good action bout to win by scores of 79-72 on all cards.
By Kurt Wolfheimer at ringside
Former WBO cruiserweight title challenger Bobby “The Celtic Warrior” Gunn (21-3-1, 18 KOs) scored a fourth round TKO over Brad Gregory (11-3, 9 KOs) on Wednesday night at the Medieval Times Castle in Lyndhurst, New Jersey. Gunn dropped Gregory twice with bodyshots in the fourth to claim the WBA-NABA belt and retain the WBC-USNBC belt. Time was 2:14.
By Andreas Hale at ringside
It was a short night for light heavyweight contender Shaun George (18-2-2, 9 KOs) as he needed just 86 seconds to take out Jaffa Ballogou (46-8, 40 KOs) on Wednesday night at BB King Blues Club & Grill in New York City’s Times Square. George rocked Ballogou early and battered him until the bout was halted at 1:26. George is currently ranked #8 by the WBC, #9 by the IBF and #11 by the WBA.
Heavyweight Tor Hamer (4-0, 4 KOs) destroyed Clarence Tillman (1-2-1) via first round TKO. Tillman was knocked down twice before the bout was stopped after just 1:44.
This Saturday night in his hometown of Los Mochis, Sinaloa, Mexico Francisco “Panchito” Arce, the younger brother of three-time world champion Jorge”Travieso” Arce, will step into the ring to face Simphiwe Nongqayi of South Africa in an IBF super flyweight eliminator bout. Arce (28-4, 19 KOs) is currently ranked #13 by the IBF while Nongqayi (14-0, 6 KOs) is ranked #6. The Zanfer Promotions promoted card will be televised via Azteca America here in the US from the Gimnasio Polideportivo Centenario in Los Mochis. Arce currently holds a minor belt after having disposed of William De Sousa last November that open the door to this elimination bout. “I’ve got to take advantage of this opportunity – Nongqayi looks like a difficult and tough opponent but I’ve got to fight this type of fighters if I want to fight for a world championship. I’ve got to show my fans and my people in Los Mochis that I can beat high level fighters and I’ll prove it to them that I can on Saturday Night,” said Arce.
Photos: Tom Casino/SHOWTIME
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The always-exciting Tomasz Adamek will defend his International Boxing Federation (IBF) cruiserweight title against undefeated Johnathon Banks in the main event this Friday, Feb. 27, on ShoBox: The New Generation on SHOWTIME (11 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast). The aggressive-minded Adamek (36-1, 24 KOs), of Jersey City, N.J., by way of Poland, will be making the first defense of his IBF title against Detroit’s Banks (20-0, 14 KOs), the IBF’s No. 8-ranked contender who is managed by Hall of Famer Emanuel Steward, at the Prudential Center in Newark, N.J. In the 12-round ShoBox co-feature, Giovanni Lorenzo (26-1, 18 KOs), of New York City via the Dominican Republic, will meet Dionisio Miranda (19-3-2, 17 KO’s) of Barranquilla, Colombia, in an IBF middleweight elimination bout. The winner could be next in line to challenge champion Arthur Abraham. The event is promoted by Main Events and Ziggy Promotions, in association with K2 Promotions. Tickets, priced from $38, can be purchased at the arena box office or by calling Ticketmaster (201) 507-8900. The first live fight starts at 8:30 p.m. ET. Here’s what the fighters and camp members said Wednesday: (more…)
By Jeff Pamungkas
WBA featherweight champion Chris John finished his final sparring session on Tuesday, 2/24, at his training camp in Houston, Texas, prior to his encounter with the hometown hero Rocky Juarez, Feb. 28 at the Toyota Center in Houston. The official weigh-in will be conducted on Friday, 2/27.
Indonesian young star Daud “Cino” Yordan (23-0, 17 KOs) departed to California last week for the long preparation and adaptation for his most important fight in his boxing career against the former IBF featherweight champion, Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero (23-1, 16 KOs), March 7, at the Tank in San Jose, California. The bout is scheduled in 10 rounds, in the jr. lightweight division.
Besides his brother/trainer Damianus Yordan, Indonesian jr. welterweight Daudy Bahari also included in Yordan’s entourage. Besides demonstrating his ability in front of the US public during sparring sessions with Yordan, Daudy will also make his US debut against Argentina’s Hector David Saldivia. The 25-year-old Bahari (38-2-1, 14 KO), a former jr. welterweight PABA champion, will try to seize Saldivia’s WBA fedelatin welterweight title in St. Thomas, Virgin Islands on 3/27.
By Scott Ploof and Alex Dombroff at ringside
The local flare added to the card by Tim Flamos was extinguished quickly by Felix Cora, Jr. Cora(20-3-2, 10 KOs) and Flamos(20-6-1, 8 KOs) fought most of the first round on even terms, each trying to break the other down by working the body. As the action wore on, Cora began finding his range, and battering Flamos, from nearby Brockton, Mass. In round three, with Cora pinned in the corner, Cora unleashed a series of uppercuts that backed Flamos off him. A series of looping power punches in the middle of the ring dropped Flamos, whose subsequent trouble rising to his feet cause referee John Callas to stop the bout at 1:57 of round three.
In the opening bout of the evening from the brand new MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods in Mashantucket, CT, Alfredo Escalera Jr. (17-2-1, 12 KO’s) led by his powerful jab and explosive combinations, battered and beat his opponent Erick Vega (8-4-1, 6 KO’s) over six masterful rounds until referee Johnny Callas called a halt to the bout at 2:50 of the final round. Escalera Jr. was explosive with his combinations and out landed and out worked his opponent throughout.
“The Contender’s” Ryan Coyne (10-0, 2 KO’s) kept his perfect record unblemished as he landed the more effective punches and combinations, typically in the later minutes of each round to score a six round unanimous decision over Richard Gingras (9-3, 5 KO’s). Scores of the bout were 60-54 twice and 59-55 all in favor of Coyne.
Interview by Byron Spurlock
With probably his biggest fight to date, only days away, IBO Lightweight Champion Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz held little back expressing his opinion of opponent, Juan Manuel Marquez, Saturday night at the Toyota Center in Houston, Tex. (more…)
Lightweight contender Rich Crunkilton has been forced to withdraw from Sunday’s WEC showdown with Bart Palaszewski after suffering a knee injury during training. Replacing Crunkilton in the bout against Palaszewski will be unbeaten Chicago lightweight Ricardo Lamas, who will step into the cage at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas . . . Click here for more by Thomas Gerbasi, WEC
Interview by Byron Spurlock
Featherweight contender Rocky Juarez (28-4, 20 Kos) will get another shot at world title Saturday night when he takes on Chris John for his WBA featherweight title on HBO Championship Boxing in Houston, Texas at the Toyota Center. Juarez will be fighting in hometown while John will be making his US debut. Fightnews was able to catch up with Juarez early in the week. (more…)
On Friday March 6th, the 2007 amateur world champion and 2008 Olympian Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade (2-0, 2KO) will look to showcase his talent to the boxing world when he opens up the March 6th ESPN2 “Friday Night Fights” telecast at the Mohegan Sun Resort and Casino in Uncasville, CT against Tom Joseph (4-1-1). The bout against Joseph will be held in the light middleweight division and is scheduled for four rounds. It will be the second time in just three fights the 20-year-old Andrade (Andrade turns 21 on 2/26) will be fighting on National T.V. (pro-debut was on the Versus network). The card, which is being promoted by Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing in association with the Mohegan Sun, is being headlined by Delvin Rodriguez (23-2-2, 14KO) defending his USBA welterweight championship against highly touted contender Shamone “The Truth” Alvarez (20-1, 11KO). Also on the line will be the number two ranking in the IBF world ratings. . . . Click here for more
The hype surrounding 22-year-old lightweight prospect Amir Khan may not be the same since his stunning first-round knockout loss to Breidis Prescott last September, but the 2004 Olympic silver medallist has the full confidence of his head trainer, Freddie Roach, as they prepare in Los Angeles for Khan’s showdown with multiple world champion “The Baby Faced Assassin” Marco Antonio Barrera, Saturday, March 14 at The M.E.N. Arena in Manchester, United Kingdom . . . Click here for more
Former world light heavyweight champion Glen Johnson and Daniel Judah faced off at today’s final press conference at the Seminole Paradise in Hollywood, FL. On Friday night, they will pick up from where they left off in their 2003 showdown (which ended in a disputed draw), at the Seminole Hard Rock LIVE Arena. ESPN2 will televise nationally.
European super-middleweight champion Karo Murat will be hoping for history to repeat itself when he takes on former world champion Cristian Sanavia in Neubrandenburg on Saturday night. Ten months ago, the 25-year-old clinched a points victory over the experienced Italian to celebrate the biggest success of his career. Murat is now looking to do the same trick again as he prepares for the rematch. “A lot of things have changed in my life since I won the European title,” Murat stated. “I am very proud to be the champion and I will do everything to defend the belt. I have beaten Sanavia once and I will beat him again.” (more…)
By Alexey Sukachev
Fresh off his recent two-round destruction of Thai Decho Bankluaygym, junior welterweight contender Denis Shafikov (18-0, 10 KOs) is ready for more. Shafikov, promoted by Finnish P3 Boxing promotional group, will take part in a local tournament, which is scheduled to take place on April 18 in Helsinki, capital of Finland. Shafikov is slated to collide with the reigning Mexican champion Juan Carlos Rodriguez (57-22-2, 41 KOs), who has sound names of former world champions Jose Luis Lopez and Livingston Bramble on his rich resume. (more…)
WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko has filed a complaint against the WBC at the International Court of Arbitration for Sport to try to avoid making two mandatory defenses in a row. Klitschko is slated to face mandatory challenger Juan Carlos Gomez on March 21, with the winner to face ex-champ Oleg Masklaev within 120 days. Klitscho prefers to make a more lucrative voluntary defense after the Gomez fight, saying “the fight with Maskaev won’t be interesting for me or the spectators.”
Preview by Pat Kelley
Hard Hittin’ Promotions has announced that it will make its much-anticipated promotional debut on Friday, February 27, at Ken Shamrock’s Lions Den Fitness Center in Middletown, Connecticut. The event, which promises to be action-packed, will be headlined by a six-round main event between Hartford, CT heavyweight Tony “TNT” Grano (14-1-1, 12 KO’s) and Rochester, New York’s Jermell “The Truth” Barnes (18-18-2, 4 KO’s). (more…)
Weights from the Lyndhurst, NJ!
Bobby Gunn 197 vs Brad Gregory 192
Marcus Bianconi 160 vs Nelson Roldan 160.5
K.C. Cunningham 220 vs Tyyab Beale 236
Carlos Zambrano 126.5 vs Javier Dennis 131
Jose Ortiz 129.5 vs. Jonathan Ocassino 127
Kyle White 166 vs Cornelius Blackwell 164
Venue: Medieval Times in Lyndhurst, NJ
Promoters: Mike Indri of Dignity Promotions and David Feldman of Felko Promotions.
Tickets: Available at the box office or call 201.741.4994. Doors open at 6:30 pm and first bout is at 7:30 pm.
Weights from NYC
Shaun George 177.5 vs Jaffa Ballogou 177
Venue: BB King Blues Club & Grill in Times Square.
Promoter: DiBella Entertainment
Tickets: $55-$150. Call 212-947-2577.
“When I saw him at the scales, all I could think about is how much I want to hurt this guy,” said George. “He has to pay for me not getting the fights with the top ten contenders that I want. He has to pay for all the guys that have been ducking me. When I started boxing as a young man, I would take all of my aggressions out on my opponents. That’s what I plan to do with Jaffa tomorrow night.” George is currently ranked WBC #8, IBF #9 and WBA #11. He scored a stirring knockout defeat of two-time heavyweight champion Chris Byrd last May.
Fernando Beltran Jr. (31-3-1, 18 KOs) will battle Aldo Valtierra (25-10, 13 KOs) for the vacant IBF Latino featherweight title on March 20 at the Laredo Entertainment Center in Laredo, Texas. The bout will be televised live on ESPN2. It will be the first championship fight card at the LEC since 2005 and the first time that ESPN has televised a fight card from the arena. In the co-feature, hard-hitting Russian jr. welterweight prospect Ruslan Provodnikov (11-0, 7 KOs) will face an opponent to be announced. Also 2008 U.S. Olympian Demetrius Andrade (2-0, 2 KOs) will also be featured on the card in a four-round jr. middleweight bout. Andrade is co-promoted by Joe DeGuardia/Star Boxing and Art Pelullo/Banner Promotions, and is considered by most observers to be the top prospect from the 2008 U.S. Olympic team.
IBF cruiserweight champion Tomasz Adamek poses with Larry Hazzard and Tyrone Smith at the C.O.M.B.A.T. Gym in Newark NJ. Adamek prepared for his Friday night SHOWTIME, ShoBox: The New Generation fight against Johnathon Banks with an open workout on Monday. (more…)
Vicente Escobedo (19-1, 12 KOs) returns to ARCO Arena to take on former WBC featherweight champion Kevin Kelley (60-9-2, 39 KOs) on March 26. Escobedo, a 2004 Olympian, will be fighting in his fifth main event at ARCO Arena and his first fight back home since June 2008. “I really think Vicente is on his way,” said Hall of Fame matchmaker Don Chargin. “During his last fight, he took on the best fighter he’s ever fought. I think we’ll have him fighting for a world title in six to eight months.” Also featured on the card is southpaw Mercito Gesta of Cebu, Philippines (14-0-1, 5 KOs) versus an opponent to be named later. Gesta, incidentally, has expressed a desire to fight Escobedo so he’ll be looking to upstage the former Olympian. Additionally, California super bantamweight champion Christopher Martin of Chula Vista (13-0, 2 KOs) will take on an opponent to be named later. Lower level General Admission seating is just $20. Tickets go on sale Friday at 10AM.
By Ron Jackson
Oscar Chauke and Takalani Ndlovu are scheduled to meet for the vacant World Boxing Foundation featherweight belt on March 20 at the Graceland Casino in Secunda. The title became vacant after the tragic death of the champion Ludumo Galada in January this year. Howard Goldberg the local representative of the WBF advised that the original opponent for Ndlovu, Jackson Asiku of Uganda had been withdrawn as he could not agree on terms with the promoters, World Sports Promotions. (more…)
By Alexey Sukachev
In an unprecedented local superfight, two best Ukrainian welterweights will collide for a world championship on April 10th, when WBA regular champion Yuri Nuzhnenko (28-0-1, 13 KOs) risks his belt against WBA #4 ranked and fellow unbeaten Vyacheslav Senchenko (28-0, 20 KOs). Both parties involved, K2 East Promotions (Nuzhnenko) and Union Boxing Promotions (Senchenko), have made the final arrangements this week, and both boxers signed the contract yesterday. The fight will take place at Druzhba Sports Palace in Donetsk and will headline a huge tournament, presented by the Union Boxing Promotions. That’ll be the first time in post-Soviet history when two local fighters dispute a world title in their homeland. (more…)
Miguel Cotto Promotions and H2 Entertainment announced the fight card for the first edition of the event “Boxeo Boricua en Caguas.” Promoter Héctor Soto ensured the audience that “the night of the 27th of February will feature great bouts.” Meanwhile, welterweight champion and entrepreneur Miguel Cotto said that “it’s going to be an explosive night for all the fans. They’ll witness the great talent of all the fighters who will leave everything on the ring.” Linette Chico was confirmed as the announcer (first female to host a boxing event in PR). The main event of the night will feature Luis Cruz vs. Carlos Díaz.
By Ron Jackson
Tshepo Lefele makes the first defence of his South African minumumweight title against Sakhumzi Mqadaru at the Nasrec Indoor Arena in Johannesburg on Friday night. The 28-year-old Lefele from Theunissen in the Free State made his pro debut in April 2000 losing on a first round stoppage to Mzwandile Nkele. However, he put this setback behind him and won his next twelve fights in a row and in June 2005 captured the vacant WBC International minimumweight title when he outpointed Elmer Gejon from the Philippines. (more…)
By Emily Harney
The stage is set for the live season four finale of “The Contender” reality boxing series. Troy Ross weighed in at 194 pounds and Ehinomen “Hino” Ehikhamenor scaled in at 192 for their ten round battle on Wednesday night.
Akinyemi “AK” Laleye 194 vs Rico Hoye 199
Felix Cora Jr.200 vs Tim Flamos 195
Erick Vega 200 vs Alfredo Escalera Jr. 198
Richard Gingras 192 vs Ryan Coyne 194
Venue: Foxwoods MGM Grand Arena, Mashantucket, CT
Promoter: Tournament of Contenders
Universum Box-Promotion celebrated its 25-year anniversary with a roaring, gala event at the famous Universum Gym in Hamburg. In the boxing highlight, longtime world champion Artur “King” Grigorian (38-1, 22 KOs), the WBO lightweight champion from 1996 to 2004, was victorious in his comeback fight, winning a six round decision over Kirkor Kirkorov (28-22, 6 KOs). Ringcard girls for the fight were current world champions Ina Menzer and Alesia Graf, plus female legend “Boxing Queen” Regina Halmich.
Among the ex-champs and current champs on hand to honor promoter Klaus-Peter Kohl were Dariusz Michalczewski, Regina Halmich, Markus Bott, Michael Löwe, Juan Carlos Gomez, Felix Sturm, Ruslan Chagaev, Zsolt Erdei and Sergej Dzinziruk. (more…)
Boxing has lost another great man. Arizona boxing legend Al Fenn, 89, passed away after losing his battle with cancer, Sunday, Feb. 22. Before WW II, Fenn fought, both, as an amateur and pro. During the war, he fought at Guadalcanal, Iwo Jima and Pearl Harbor. After military service, Fenn pursued journalism – and continued filling many roles in boxing. He is credited with saving amateur boxing in Arizona, and preserving the state Golden Gloves tournament for years. Fenn was also the trainer for many outstanding fighters, including Zora Folley and Manny Elias. For decades, he was also a matchmaker and promoter across Arizona.
A service for Al will be held at the LDS Stake Center (36th St. & Shea Blvd.) in Phoenix, at 11 a.m. Thursday, Feb. 26. In lieu of flowers, his family is requesting that donations be sent to the Phoenix Boys and Girls Center, 2116 W. Buckeye Rd., Phoenix, Ariz., 85009. For more details call 602.264.6372.
The Ultimate Fighting Championship® (UFC®) today announced that it has signed top-ten middleweight contender Yoshihiro Akiyama to an exclusive promotional contract that will see him step into the UFC® Octagon™ for the first time this summer. “I’m excited to bring Akiyama into the UFC and I can see him making an immediate impact in the middleweight division,” said UFC President Dana White. “Besides his great judo and submission game, he’s a finisher, and UFC fans are going to love watching him because he always shows up to fight.”
Ringside report by Felipe Leon
Three divisional world champion Erik Morales’ Box Latino joined forces with his brother, former bantamweight champion Diego “Pelucho” Morales of PM Promotions, to stage a seven-fight bout card in the small beach town of Rosarito, Mexico, about 20 minutes south of the San Diego-Tijuana border, Saturday night . . . Click here for more
Houston native and former unified lightweight world champion Juan Diaz recently partnered with Everlast to give back to his community. On Feb. 13, Diaz and Everlast provided a $5,000 donation to The Contemporary Learning Center in Houston. The check was presented to the students during a ceremony held at the school. An Everlast endorser, Diaz is a former Contemporary Learning Center student who frequently returns to the school to speak in order to help motivate students to thrive in education and fitness. Juan will be fighting in his hometown of Houston, Texas versus Juan Manuel Marquez on Saturday.
By Karl Freitag
In March 2006, Juan Manuel Marquez traveled to Indonesia to challenge WBA featherweight champion Chris John on John’s home turf. With two point deductions late in that bout, the Marquez camp contends he didn’t get a fair shake in his opponent’s backyard. Marquez will again be fighting in enemy territory when he faces Juan Diaz on Saturday night at the Toyota Center in Houston, Texas. “I’ve got no worries whatsoever,” stated Marquez today on the topic of his opponent again having homefield advantage. “Part of the deal was I would take the fight but I wanted neutral judges and I feel my promoter Golden Boy Promotions did a good job. I’m very satisfied with the judges as long as they do their job and score what they see in the ring.” The always respectful Diaz said Marquez is “a man on a mission” and “he doesn’t care about where or who he fights.”
P4P best Manny Pacquiao has given up the WBC lightweight title. In a letter to the WBC, Pacquiao wrote:
Dear Mr. Sulaiman and World Boxing Council;
I take great pride and honor in representing the W.B.C. as its Lightweight Champion at the present time. Your instituion has opened the door formy success in boxing and I am grateful for the prestige your organization has given me over the years as one of its champions in many different weight categories.
I have had discussion with my team as to the direction of my career since my fight at 147 lbs with Oscar De La Hoya, on December 6, 2008. After careful consideration and the in the advancement of my professional boxing career, I intend at this time to campaign in the Super Lightweight division with a fight against Ricky Hatton on May 2, 2009.
Therefore, this correspondence will serve as formal notice to the World Boxing Council, I am voluntarily relinquishing my W.B.C. Lightweight Championship Belt in order to pave the way for a new champion and provide opportunities and success to other fighters in the Lightweight division.
I look forward to the opportunity and distinction of representing your organization as a World Champion in the future.
Emmanuel “Manny” Pacquiao
Spike TV’s coverage of UFC 95 on Saturday, February 21 (9:00pm-Midnight) delivered more Men 18-34 (634,000) and Men 18-49 (1,244,000) than anything else on television (broadcast or cable) in its timeslot. The action-packed fight card peaked at 11:30pm with 3 million viewers for the main event featuring former “The Ultimate Fighter” champs and current lightweight contenders Diego “Nightmare” Sanchez and Joe “Daddy” Stevenson. With a bevy of exciting early-round knockouts, the three-hour Spike telecast included an unprecedented nine fights, five from the main card and four undercard bouts. The previous high for a Spike TV fight card was seven fights. Emanating from the O2 Arena in London, England, UFC 95 aired same-day tape on Spike TV and drew a 2.2 in Men 18-49, 2.7 for Men 25-34, 2.2 for M18-34, and 2.4 million viewers.
No, you’re not imagining things. Jose “Junior” Aldo is back again. The 22-year-old phenom is Texas-bound for his fourth WEC fight in the past eight months. The Brazilian is set to lock horns with an extremely powerful and aggressive Iraqi war veteran named Chris Mickle (31-11-2), who doesn’t seem to care that the 13-1 Aldo has been manhandling opponents and skyrocketing up the featherweight contender ladder in the process . . . Click here for more by Frank Curreri, WEC
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