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Following a grueling workout at Striking Unlimited last week Friday, UFC Interim Heavyweight Champion Frank Mir sat down with the sports media in Las Vegas to talk UFC 100. Mir gave advice to UFC Heavyweight Champion Brock Lesnar, stating the strategy he used against him the first time around might just work the second. “If Brock really comes out and tries to abandon the running at me, heads over heels and just trying to knock, bull rush me over, I honestly think that’s his best approach,” said Mir, with a black shine circling his eye. “I would just come after me – take a chance, ’cause to sit there and play the cat and mouse game with me, and jab and slip and move around, I think that’s a slow death for him that he can’t possibly win.”
UFC 100 takes place Saturday, July 11 live from the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. The sold out event is available live on Pay-Per-View starting at 10pm ET/7pm PT.
Two of the hardest-hitting boxers in the world participated in a media conference call Tuesday to discuss their upcoming world title fight on Saturday, July 11, live on SHOWTIME at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast) from the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Fla. IBF Bantamweight champion Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko and two division world champion Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan both possess eye-popping knockout percentages. Agbeko (26-1, 22 KOs) of Accra, Ghana, now fighting out of Bronx, N.Y., has knocked out more than 81 percent of his opponents while Darchinyan (32-1, 26 KOs), of Sydney, Australia, by way of Armenia, is right behind him at 76 percent. (more…)
Two stars from The Contender season 4 television reality show, Rich Gingras (9-2, 5 KOs) and Tim “The Hammer” Flamos (20-6-1, 8 KOs) collide on a July 17 presented by Jimmy Burchfield’s Classic Entertainment and Sports Inc. (CES), at the Twin River Event Center in Lincoln, Rhode Island. The bout will be an eight rounder for the vacant EBA cruiserweight belt. The second half of the co-main event is a six-round rematch between unbeaten Eddie Soto (11-0, 4 KOs) and Sean Eklund (6-4, 1 KO), who is trained by his uncle “Irish” Micky Ward. Soto won the first fight by split decision. Tickets are $25-$100 Call 401-724-2253/2254. Note: Twin River has waived its 18+ rule for this event. Anybody under the age of 18 must be accompanied at all times by an adult and they must enter through the West entrance.
Need evidence of the recession? Just take a look at unemployment rates, home foreclosure statistics, dwindling 401Ks, or former TUF 8 contestant Tom Lawlor – the UFC’s latest addition to the middleweight division. . . . Click here for more by Debbie Lee, UFC.com
Fresh off a devastating third round knockout win this past Friday night, two time world heavyweight title challenger “Fast” Fres Oquendo (30-5, 19 KOs) will return to action against WBO Latino Heavyweight Champion, Argentinean Gonzalo Omar Basile (41-4, 19 KOs) on July 24th at Chicago’s UIC Pavilion. Oquendo was originally slated to fight Basile last Friday, but Basile had problems getting into the United States from Argentina. Oquendo instead crushed Mark “Oak Tree” Brown. Local lightweights Gadiel Andaluz and Oscar De La Cruz meet in the co-feature. Advance tickets for “Windy City Fight Night 4” start at $31. Call 312-226-5800.
To all my friends and fans:
I cannot describe this moment of glory that I’m going through right now, after I conquered the WBA Super Lightweight title last Saturday at the Staples Center in Los Angeles. It was a dream night for me. Due to the magnitude of the fight, the quality of my opponent Victor Ortiz, and especially beacuse of how things unfolded during the bout in my debut in the United States.
Obviously, it was quite a tough fight. I was quite nervous at the beginning and things got complicated for me. But I always had the unbreakable determination of winning the fight. Every time of the three occasions I hit the canvas, I got back on my feet saying to myself that I could not lose. (more…)
By Rick Scharmberg
Ryan Belasco (11-2-2, 3 KOs), of New Castle, Delaware will fight in his first main event on Friday, July 24, when he faces West Virginia’s Dean White (14-10-1, 7 KOs) in an eight round junior welterweight bout at Dover Downs Hotel and Casino. At stake will be the WBF USA belt. Belasco is unbeaten in his last seven bouts. In the co-feature, rising star “Mighty” Mike Tiberi (9-1, 4 KOs) will face an opponent to be determined. The promoter of “Delaware’s Young Guns” is Capital City Promotions. (more…)
Puerto Rican world champion Juan Manuel “Juanma” Lopez turns 26 today. The undefeated champion succesfully defended this WBO junior featherweight crown on Saturday night in Atlantic City, for the fourth time. Lopez will spend the day with his family in Caguas. “I feel very good about the win and hope to return to the ring very soon”, said Lopez. Lopez 26-0 with 23 KOs is 5-0 with 5 KOs in championship fights since June of 2008.
By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
Golden Boy Promotions’ bid of $1,211,000 beat the $1,195,000 of InterBox, giving the Los Angeles-based promotional powerhouse the right to promote the mandatory defense of IBF super middleweight champion Lucien Bute against Librado Andrade. Bute, who won the first fight on points after controversial ending, will get 75% ($908,250). The bout could land on the September 19 undercard of Mayweather-Marquez in Las Vegas.
After Saturday’s thrilling world title match, which ended in a sixth round technical knockout victory for Argentinean Marcos Maidana when the fight was stopped by the ringside physician due to a severe cut over Victor Ortiz’ right eye and swelling under his left eye, Ortiz wants to clear the air with the media and public regarding his performance. “I didn’t fight the right fight and I didn’t execute the correct game plan to beat Maidana,” Ortiz said from his home in Oxnard. “I will learn from the mistakes I made on Saturday and not make the simple mistakes again, like trying to slug when I should box. I promise that next time, I will be more focused.” (more…)
Top Rank’s new series – Pinoy Power – will be announced and outlined at a press conference at the Hard Rock Hotel and Casino, Las Vegas, on Wednesday. “Our Latin Fury series is very hot and successful,” said Bob Arum of Top Rank. “Now we are launching Pinoy Power which we believe will be just as exciting.” Nonito Donaire of General Santos, Philippines, will be at the press conference to talk about his fight with Rafael Concepcion of Panama City at the Hard Rock on Saturday, August 15. Concepcion is on a flight from Panama and will be at the press conference with his manager Damon de Berry of New York City. Donaire and Concepcion are fighting for the WBA Interim Super Flyweight (115-pounds) Championship. Also attending will be world featherweight champion Steven Luevano of LaPuente, Calif. Cameron Dunkin, manager of Luevano, and trainer Robert Garcia will be the champ. Luevano is defending against a Manny Pacquiao-managed fighter, Bernabe Concepcion of Rizal, Philippines. Michael Koncz of Team Pacquiao is accompanying Concepcion to the press conference. Pinoy Power on August 15 will be available on Pay Per View at a suggested retail of $34.95.
“Fast” Eddie Chambers (34-1, 18 KOs), of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, is planning a fireworks display on July 4 when he tackles 6’7″ behemoth Ukrainian Alexander “Sascha” Dimitrenko (29-0, 19 KOs) in an important twelve round WBO heavyweight title elimination bout at the Color Line Arena in Hamburg, Germany. Chambers will also be staking his claim as America’s best heavyweight. Dimitrenko is the top ranked contender in the WBO, while Chambers is number five. (More.)
By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Former IBO 130 pound champion, Bill Dib, talks to Fightnews and states he is looking forward to his nationally televised clash with Japanese opponent Kenichi Yamaguchi (15-1-2, 4 KOs) at Luna Park, Sydney, Australia on July 9, and mentions he is ready to challenge any of the world featherweight title holders including IBF champion Cristobel Cruz and also WBA ruler Chris John. (more…)
DiBella Entertainment has inked a deal with undefeated super middleweight Marcus “Too Much” Johnson (16-0, 13 KOs). Johnson will be co-promoted by DBE and Antonio Leonard Productions, and managed by James Prince. “Being with Lou DiBella is going to help dramatically,” said Johnson. “He’s going to push to get my name out there and get me recognized. He will get me a title shot.”
Irish boxing manager Gary Hyde, president of NTH Promotions, is seeking an injunction to prevent two-time Olympic champion Guillermo Rigondeaux from fighting on the July 17th ESPN2 Friday Night Fights show in Reno, Nevada. Rigondeaux (1-0, 1 KO), fighting as a bantamweight, now lives in Los Angeles after defecting from Cuba. The 28-year-old southpaw has won multiple world championships in a 243-4 amateur career. “I first met Rigo in Belfast at the 2001 World Boxing Championships and subsequently traveled to Cuba,” Hyde explained. “Rigo signed a 5-year management contract with me in March of 2007. I am currently battling in the Miami courts to enforce our management agreement because he made his pro debut under the management of GSMG LTD and Marcus Concepcion, who work closely with the Arena Box outfit. I could find no record of either holding a manager’s license.” (more…)
Boxing returns to the Plaza Hotel & Casino in beautiful downtown Las Vegas on Friday night when Guilty Boxing, in association with Rattlesnake Events, LLC presents a bout that is sure to be full of venom as Dewey “The Black Kobra” Cooper (17-3-3, 10 KOs) goes fang to fang with “Cobra” Cory Phelps (13-5-1, 7 KOs) in a scheduled eight rounder. The semi main event will feature a battle of unbeaten welterweights as Abdon Lozano (5-0, 1 KOs) goes against Andre “Gorgeous” Gorges (8-0, 6 KOs) over six rounds of boxing. The undercard will showcase hard charging, non-stop punching lightweight “Lightning” Lonnie Smith (7-2, 5 KOs) fighting in a six round bout against Detroit, Michigan’s dangerous James Lester Jr (8-2, 4 KOs) . Also duking it out on the card will be Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak (5-0, 2 KOs) versus James Helmes (6-3, 1 KO). Tickets start at $20 and can be purchased at the Plaza Hotel & Casino Box office or by phone at 702-386-2575.
The IBF today sent a letter to Sauerland Event, promoter of IBF middleweight champion Arthur Abraham, advising them that negotiations should start immediately for a fight between Abraham and mandatory challenger Giovanni Lorenzo (27-1, 19 KOs). Rumors are swirling that Abraham, who defended his title successfully on Saturday night against Mahir Oral, will move up in weight class. In that case, the IBF would order Lorenzo, the #1 contender, to fight Sebastian Sylvester, an Abraham stablemate who earned the #2 IBF ranking when he soundly defeated Lajuan Simon on Saturday night. “I’ll fight either one,” the low key Lorenzo stated. “If Abraham won’t fight me, I’ll knock out Sylvester to win the title instead. I’ll fight either one of them right in Germany if I have to. Now it’s my turn and I’m going to come home with the title. I’m just waiting for them to tell me the date.” (more…)
World Extreme Cagefighting® proudly confirms the remaining bouts for WEC: Torres vs. Bowles live from The Joint at Hard Rock Hotel and Casino on Sunday, August 9. Tickets for Torres vs. Bowles are on sale now and priced at $40, $55, $85, $100, $125, $175, and $225. Tickets may be purchased by calling Ticketmaster Charge-By-Phone at 1-800-745-3000 or by visiting the Hard Rock Box Office. Tickets also are available online through www.wec.tv or www.ticketmaster.com. (more…)
“Guys like Stephan Bonnar, the kinds who can stand up and fight me as well as submit me on the ground,” says Jon “Bones” Jones, “well, that’s probably the worst matchup for me.” . . . Click here for more by Chuck Mindenhall, UFC.com
Photos: André Boge/Universum Box-Promotion
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WBO #1 heavyweight Alexander Dimitrenko (29-0, 19 KOs) and #5 rated Eddie Chambers (34-1, 18 KOs) met for the first time on Monday during a press conference at the Cinemaxx in Hamburg, Germany. They are set to collide on Saturday in a WBO official eliminator at the Color Line Arena, topping a fully loaded “Universum Champions Night” card. The winner will become the mandatory challenger for IBF/WBO/IBO heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko in the next mandatory defense of his WBO belt.
“I had very good preparation here in Hamburg with my trainer Fritz Sdunek,” said Dimitrenko. “I had super work and a super sparring partner. I’m ready and fit for the biggest fight of my career on Saturday evening. I won’t give away a lot, however, you will be surprised. My best time starts now and I’m happy about it!”
As for Chambers, Dimitrenko stated. “I’ve seen his fights and know what’s coming. He’s quick, but so am I. Understandably, I won’t give away my tactics, but I can say that one punch can decide everything. It will be interesting!” (more…)
A ‘no frills’ fighter in the best sense of the term, Dan Henderson has long been one of mixed martial arts’ best, pound for pound. On July 11th, ‘Hendo’ competes in perhaps the most high-profile fight of his nearly ten year pro career when he takes on Michael Bisping in a featured bout on the UFC 100 card at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas. Will a win over ‘The Count’ earn a place on the list of Henderson’s seven defining moments? . . . Click here for more by Thomas Gerbasi, UFC.com
By Dave Spencer/Fightnews Canada
Olivier Lontchi came in to the theme music of Michael Jackson’s ‘Thriller’ Saturday night, but in the end, it was undefeated Juan Manual “Juanma” Lopez who walked out as the King of ‘Pop’. Juanma (26-0, 24 KOs) made the fourth defense of his WBO super bantamweight title and scoring his 24th stoppage in 26 fights at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City. Lontchi (18-1-2 8 KOs) proved to be a worthy foe in the headline bout of Bob Arum’s promoted Top Rank card, but by the end of the night, the champion was just too powerful and tenacious for the Montreal fighter who suffered his first defeat of his professional career. (more…)
As one of the birthplaces of martial arts, China is rightfully considered to be hallowed ground for the warriors of the Ultimate Fighting Championship®. Today, UFC® is pleased to announce a television deal with Inner Mongolia Television that will mark the first time in history UFC will be seen on TV in China, continuing the global expansion of the premier brand in mixed martial arts. (more…)
By Alexey Sukachev and Andrey Bazdrev
Photos: Andrey Bazdrev
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This Thursday, July 2, once-beaten cruiserweight Grigory Drozd (31-1, 23 KOs) will face his toughest test since the only loss to ex-world champion Firat Arslan in October 2006. At “Dynamo” Sports Arena (the part of Krylatskoye Sports Complex), Drozd, who is one step from challenging one of five world champions in his weight class, collides with the dangerous American brawler Darnell “Ding-a-Ling Man” Wilson (23-8-3, 20 KOs) in the risky defense of his PABA and WBO Asia Pacific 200lb titles. Not only will minor belts be at stake but also Drozd’s WBO #1, WBA #2 and WBC/IBF #5 world rankings are on the line against the currently unrated Wilson…but Drozd just doesn’t feel the pressure, it seems. (more…)
Call it ESP for GSP, but when UFC welterweight champion Georges St-Pierre first saw Brazil’s Thiago Alves, he had a feeling that the two would eventually meet in the Octagon.
“When I first saw him fighting, I knew he was going to be a potential opponent,” said St-Pierre on a media teleconference Thursday to promote his UFC 100 clash with ‘The Pitbull’ on July 11th . . . Click here for more by Thomas Gerbasi, UFC.com
Heavyweight contenders Alexander “Sascha” Dimitrenko and “Fast” Eddie Chambers faced off today at a press conference in advance of their WBO heavyweight eliminator on Saturday at the Color Line Arena in Hamburg. Full report to come…
By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Former Thailand amateur champion Tantong Kiattaweesuk (11-0, 7 KOs) will clash with Bogie Delada (13-1,11 KOs) over twelve rounds at Sonkhla, South Thailand with the IBF Pan Pacific title up for grabs on July 17. Promoter Jimmy Chaichotchuang is confident Kiattaweesuk has the skills to defeat the best bantamweights in the world, including IBF#5 Michael Domingo (38-14-2,16 KOs). (more…)
By Alexey Sukachev
According to Mario Preskar representatives, the Croatian heavyweight prospect is now in Zagreb, Croatia, recovering after a dramatic accident following his eight-round draw against Maxim Pedyura in Lviv last Saturday. Contrary to the previously announced information, Preskar is doing completely fine now. There was a suspicion of subdural hemorrhage according to sources in local Ukrainian media, but all the subsequent tests came back negative proving the heavyweight will be able to recover fully after what seemed to be a brief collapse due to heat exhaustion. “It was too hot inside the arena”, Preskar is being quoted by the K2 East official portal. “The hall, we’d been fighting in, was unventilated. At the end of the fight, I was totally dehydrated with a dry mouth and that was the reason why I fell unconscious. Now, I’m feeling myself just fine. The subsequent medical examination proved I had no serious injuries during the fight. Considering the excessive fouling throughout the fight, I wish to ensure you that all these actions were unintentional on my behalf. As for Pedyura, he was impolite and behaved himself in an unsportsmanlike way, hitting me while we were both lying on canvas.”
Kurt Wolfheimer and Rick Scharmberg at Ringside
Photographer Marty Rosengarten/RingsidePhotos.com
One of the best pound for pound fighters in the world, Juan Manuel “Juanma” Lopez (26-0, 24 KOs) successfully defended his WBO junior featherweight title with a convincing ninth round stoppage of Olivier Lontchi (18-0-3, 8 KOs) in the Adrian Phillips Ballroom at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City New Jersey on Saturday. In the co-feature of the Top Rank promoted “Latin Fury 9” pay-per-view card, Jorge “Travieso” Arce (52-5-1, 40 KOs) rebounded from his loss to Vic Darchinyan with an impressive third round knockout of Fernando Lumacad (18-2-2, 7 KOs). Click here to read the full ringside reports and view the explosive photogallery!
Sad news to report. Mikki Wilkins, daughter of IBF President Marian W. Muhammad, passed away after a difficult battle with gastric cancer. Ms. Wilkins was officially diagnosed with cancer eight months ago when she was hospitalized for excessive weakness after having rapidly lost 80 pounds over a period of four months. She passed away Saturday, June 27 at 5:05 AM at the Wake Medical Center in Raleigh, NC, just short of her 37th birthday which would have been on July 1. Her mother was by her side when she transitioned. Many in the boxing community will remember her from the IBF Annual Conventions. (more…)
By Joe Koizumi
Japan-based Venezuelan, unbeaten WBA super-feather champ Jorge Linares (27-0, 18 KOs), still twenty-three, displayed a very impressive eighth-round TKO victory over Josafat Perez (26-2, 20 KOs), a durable Mexican, on Saturday in Nuevo Laredo, Mexico. Linares, already a two-class champ as ex-WBC 126-pound ruler, made his initial defense of his second world throne, which was shown on delayed basis through WOWOW cable TV here in Japan today (Monday). His stoppage of the game and tough Mexican warrior was well-received by all our aficionados. The champ’s post-fight comment in the Japanese language was as follows: “I deeply appreciate Japanese fight fans’ supports and also express my personal thanks to Teiken Gym’s staff and clubmates. I will diligently keep training to become stronger.” Linares seems humbler and more moderate than our younger generation. His personality as well as his still growing strength will make him more popular here in Japan.
By Dennis Principe
Apparently legendary trainer Freddie Roach wants to “pull the trigger” and silence critics of the one-sided win scored by Manny Pacquiao over Oscar De La Hoya late last year. Interviewed by the Philippine radio show “Sports Chat” hosted by this writer, Roach said he wants his prized ward to battle a legitimate world welterweight champion who is at his prime and is not past the age of 30. “When we fought Oscar before the fight they said he’s going to kill Manny and then afterwards they say he was old. So after we beat (Miguel) Cotto what are they going to say?” said Roach during an overseas telephone interview from his Wild Card Gym. “So we’re going to beat another champion at that weight and that will be another achievement for Manny Pacquiao, another world title for the pound for pound king.” (more…)
By Alexey Sukachev
Croatian heavyweight prospect Mario Preskar (16-0-3, 10 KOs), who collapsed after an eight-round draw against Ukrainian slugger Maxim Pedyura and was taken out on stretcher, is still being held in one of Lviv hospitals. Preskar, who was under suspicion of subdural hemorrhage due to the rupture of blood vessels and experienced breathe problems, was immediately treated by the emergency care squad, driven out by resuscitation ambulance van and regained his consciousness in the hospital since then. He is now being reported to remain in stable satisfactory condition, awaiting the results of various medical tests; his boxing career being arguably over after this tragic accident. Preskar was down twice during a wild last-round foul-fest. He has fought numerous times in the U.S. under the DKP banner.
By Alexey Sukachev
Highly regarded Russian bantamweight contender “Knight” Alexander Bakhtin (22-0, 9 KOs) will be back to the ring on July 5 at Chatan Dome in Okinawa, Japan, to face Indonesian national champion Richard Samosir (18-1-3, 7 KOs) in the initial defense of his OPBF title. Unbeaten Chita native, who is currently ranked #2 by the WBC, #4 by the WBA and #5 by the IBF at 118 lbs, spent his entire career in Japan, retaining the Japanese national belt record nine times before taking a forced one-and-a-half-year-long layoff due to various off-ring problems. Bakhtin, whose amateur record reads as 124-4, 80 KOs and who is trained by well-known Russian specialist Alexander Zimin, is now desperately looking for a world title opportunity in a talent-filled bantamweight class.
World super flyweight champion Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan and his manager Elias Nassar have announced from Darchinyan’s Las Vegas-based training camp that they will be extending their relationship with promoter Gary Shaw for life. “The real wonder of our relationship is that we have never had a signed piece of paper between us,” said a pleased and honored Shaw. “Just a handshake and a hug. It’s a beautiful friendship and I look forward to working with them on developing more talent from Australia, Armenia and Russia for many years to come.” Darchinyan (32-1, 26 KOs), already a two-division world champion, moves up to challenge IBF bantamweight champion Joseph “King Kong” Agbeko (26-1, 22 KOs) on July 11. The fight will be broadcast live from the Bell Atlantic Center in Sunrise, Fla., on SHOWTIME Championship Boxing, beginning at 9 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast.)
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