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Preview by Brady Crytzer
There is no bigger question mark in combat sports than the fate of last minute replacement. Originally slated to face tough jiu jitsu black belt Hermes Franca in the main event of UFC Fight Night 17 on Saturday, February 7th, Joe Lauzon now must prepare for an entirely different kind of opponent. Instead of fighting the veteran Franca, Lauzon is now scheduled to meet Des Moines, Iowa’s Jeremy “Lil’ Heathen” Stephens. Starting as the aging warrior challenging the young upstart, UFN 17’s main event has transformed overnight into a high profile showdown between two of the lightweight division’s best young hopefuls. With one of the most intriguing fights of the new year, the Ultimate Fighting Championship makes its debut on the campus of the University of South Florida in a big way . . . click here for more
Legends are made from incidents like 2008 U.S. Olympic first alternate Danny O’Connor experienced last weekend in Canada, when his glove split after he pounded pro-debuting Greg Jimenez’s body with monster-like hooks en route to a win by 4-round decision off-television on ESPN Friday Night Fights show, headlined by the IBF light welterweight title fight between Juan Urango and Herman Ngoudjo at the Bell Centre in Montreal. The 23-year-old O’Connor (3-0, 1 KO) turned in the best performance of his young pro carer, but what fans there will remember is seeing Danny hit his opponent so hard that his glove literally split. (more…)
By Ron Jackson
Three South Africans Philip Ndou, Ali Funeka and Thomas Mashaba will be involved in career defining fights overseas in February and March. First up is Phillip Ndou, 31, who returns to the ring after an absence of nearly five years when he faces Rachid Drilzane 15-6; 1 from France in San Quentin, France on February 14 in a scheduled ten round welterweight contest. Ndou who lost his last two fights to Floyd Mayweather in 2003 and to Isaac Hlatshwayo in 2004 will have a lot of ring rust to knock off, but he should not have to many problems with the light punching 30-year-old Drilzane who has only one inside the distance win on his record and that was on his pro debut in April 2003. (more…)
Former junior-welterweight world champion DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley (33-10-1, 19 KOs) scored a seventh round TKO over former title challenger Wilson “El Topadora” Enrique Galli (31-9, 13 KOs) on Tuesday night at the Meadowlands Sheraton Hotel in East Rutherford, NJ. Corley dropped Galli twice in the contest, getting the stoppage at 1:23 of the seventh when Galli’s corner threw in the towel. The time was 1:23. Promoter Darwish Brothers Knockout Promotions was staging their first boxing show in four years.
By Gabriel F. Cordero
Representatives of former world champion Jhonny González are apparently willing to offer $160,000 to bring a bout between WBC super bantamweight world champion Toshiaki Nishioka and González to Mexico or United States instead of Nishioka’s home turf in Japan. Sources acknowledge that it is very difficult to bring Nishioka to North America to expose his crown and for now the situation is they trying to resolve the percentages between champion and challenger. In the event no deal is reached, a purse bid will be carried out at noon on Friday the 13th at WBC Headquarters in Mexico City.
With Merit Tully of the Honda Center between them, three-time world champion Jorge “Travieso” Arce (left) and undisputed super flyweight champion Vic Darchinyan spoke at the Pal Boxing Club in Downtown Anaheim about their careers and training methods. The fighters snubbed each other during the brief photo-op on Tuesday leading up to their big fight this Saturday night at the Honda Center to be televised by Showtime.
They were in the same room and the same ring, but three-time world champion Jorge “Travieso” Arce and undisputed super flyweight champion Vic Darchinyan did not engage in conversation as they took questions from young amateurs boxers today at the PAL Boxing Club in downtown Anaheim. Arce and Darchinyan will meet on Saturday night at the Honda Center in a long awaited battle between two of the most fierce and highly popular boxers in the lower weight classes. (more…)
By Andreas Hale at ringside
Gleason’s Gym kicked off their monthly shows in Brooklyn at the Masonic Temple with two ex-world champions in the main event on Tuesday night. Former WBA interim super flyweight champ Rafael Concepcion (13-3-1, 8 KOs) pounded out a methodical and slow-paced unanimous decision over former WBO minimumweight and WBO interim light flyweight champion Kermin Guardia (37-9, 21 KOs) in an eight round super flyweight bout. Scores were 78-74, 78-74, 77-75.
Story by Mariano A. Agmi
Jr. middleweight Sergio Martinez reintroduced himself to American boxing fans in emphatic fashion on October 4, 2008, when the Argentine southpaw dominated Alex Bunema for eight rounds on HBO’s Boxing After Dark, causing the Congolese’s corner to stop the bludgeoning at the end of the round . . . . Click here for more
World Extreme Cagefighting® (WEC®) today announced that WEC will add a flyweight division to the WEC championship divisions. The organization will no longer actively promote the welterweight division, continuing its focus on the lighter weight classes including lightweight (155 pounds), featherweight (145 pounds), bantamweight (135 pounds) and flyweight (125 pounds) . . . click here for more
By Edgar Gonzalez
Fightnews.com was informed by inside sources that Ricardo Mayorga has withdrawn from his scheduled bout on February 14 against unbeaten junior middleweight prospect Alfredo Angulo. The fight was scheduled to take place at the BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise, Florida. Fightnews spoke directly with Angulo, but unfortunately he didn’t know who he will face next nor did he know about “El Matador” pulling out. Sources say Mayorga got hurt during training and promoter Gary Shaw is trying to replace Mayorga with a suitable opponent instead of canceling the fight. No comment from the Mayorga camp. Nate Campbell will be the main event as he defends his WBO/IBF lightweight title against Ali Funeka and Sergio Martinez will defend his WBC interim junior middleweight title against former welterweight champion Kermit Cintron. Sources say Alfonso Gomez might be the replacement but is not confirmed.
World super flyweight champion Vic “Raging Bull” Darchinyan and WBA interim super flyweight champion Jorge “Travieso” Arce will host a media workout Wednesday, February 4, beginning at 2 P.M. PT at TKO Boxing (1601 South Center Street, Santa Ana, Calif. 92704.) The public is invited to attend, free of charge. Darchinyan and Arce will finally meet, in a long-awaited world title showdown, on Saturday at the Honda Center in Anaheim. Darchinyan and Top-10 lightweight contender Antonio Demarco will conduct their workout at 2 P.M., followed by Arce and Almazbek “Kid Diamond” Raiymkulov at 3 P.M. (more…)
Giovanni Lorenzo of Dominican Republic and New York City (26-1, 18 KOs) will take on Dionisio Miranda of Barranquilla, Columbia ( 19-3-2, 17 KOs) in a 12 round IBF Middleweight eliminator bout Friday, February 27th at Prudential Center in Newark, NJ. The winner of this battle will move into the #1 position and become the mandatory IBF Middleweight challenger to Champion Arthur Abraham. The fight will be televised live on ShoBox: The New Generation on SHOWTIME (11 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast).
In the main event, IBF Cruiserweight Champion Tomasz “Goral” Adamek (36-1, 24 KOs) of Jersey City and Golwice, Poland, will make the first defense of his world title against Detroit’s undefeated Johnathon Banks (20-0, 14 KOs). (more…)
Southern California promoter Roy Englebrecht’s Battle in The Ballroom series is set to kick off the 25th anniversary of its legendary run on February 19th at the Irvine Marriott. In the main event, which is presented in association with Golden Boy Promotions, highly touted middleweight prospect Craig McEwan puts his unbeaten record on the line against popular Pomona product Ivan “Sitting Bull” Stovall, his toughest test to date. Also in action will be world-ranked featherweight star Rhonda Luna, and unbeaten 21-year old phenom “Mad” Max Skayzer. Another highlight will be the induction of the first four boxers into the Inaugural Battle In The Ballroom Hall of Fame. Inductees include Gernaro Hernandez, Johnny Vasquez, John Montes, and Freddie Roach. In the non boxer category, the Marriott’s first promoter Don Fraser will be honored. (more…)
WBA super bantamweight champion, Ricardo “El Maestrito” Cordoba will defend his world title against Bernard Dunne on March 21st at The O2 in Dublin, Ireland. It will be the first world title fight to take place in Ireland in 13 years. Dunne turns 29 next month and he feels the timing is perfect for a shot at the WBA belt which once adorned the waist of countryman Barry McGuigan over two decades ago. “This is the fight I’ve wanted since I first put on a pair of boxing gloves,” said Dunne. “It’s every boxer’s dream to be a world champion and I’m no different. This is what I’ve worked my whole life for and now that the chance is here I want to grab it with both hands.” (more…)
By Lee Bates
World ranked 140 pounder Alex ‘El Pollo’ De Jesus (19-0, 13 KOs) returns to the ring March 20th against unbeaten César Cuenca (35-0, 1 KO) of Argentina in a battle between two southpaws. De Jesus will be taking on Cuenca in his native country of Argentina. De Jesus is currently ranked number 5 by the WBO while Cuenca himself is ranked number 8. “This is a very important fight for De Jesus and hopefully a victory will bring him that much closer and faster to a world title opportunity.” said De Jesus’ promoter Ivan Rivera president of PR Best Boxing.
Amir Khan’s mega showdown against Mexican legend Marco Antonio Barrera is still on for March 14th at the Manchester Evening News Arena. There had been concerns that the fight would have to be postponed following the cut Barrera received last Saturday night against Freudis Rojas in Mexico, but following a thorough medical examination “The Baby-Faced Assassin” has been given the all clear to box. Barrera needed two stitches to close the gash. (more…)
John Duddy (l) and Matt Vanda (r) pose at the press conference announcing their upcoming Middleweight fight at Madison Square Garden. The two will meet on February 21, 2009 on the undercard of the Miguel Cotto-Michael Jennings.
Antonio Leonard Productions will presents a boxing card on February 5th at the Rio Events Center in Houston, Texas. Headlining is unbeaten welterweight Cornelius White (7-0, 6KOs). The co-main will feature another undefeated local prospect in light heavyweight Alfonso “El Tigre” Lopez (11-0, 9 KOs). Lopez, a former Sam Houston State football player, has caught the attention of boxing fans and media all over Texas since he traded his cleats for gloves and smashed onto the radar with his fast hands, excellent defense and fluid technique. Lopez looks like one to watch. Immediately following the fight card, chart topping super star rapper ScarFace will headline a live concert event. “My goal is to bring the best boxing in town to one of the best locations and also to give the fans their hard earned money’s worth, great fights followed by an electrifying concert. Where else can you get that for the price?” said Antonio Leonard.
Tickets for the April 1 showdown between Carlos Condit and Martin Kampmann, at the Sommet Center in Nashville, Tenn., goes on sale Thursday for UFC Fight Club members . . . click here for more
Boxeo TELEMUNDO will return to the Miccosukee Resort and Gaming on February 13th. In the main event, Jose “El Gallo” Reyes (23-5, 8 KOs) of Caguas, Puerto Rico will be facing Efren “El Huracan” Hinojosa (29-5, 17 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico in clash schedule for 12 Rounds with the WBO Latin Lightweight Title at stake. In a special attraction, Cuban Jr. Middleweight undefeated prospect Lester “El Cubanito” Gonzalez will be making his first south Florida appearance when he faces Quinton Whitaker (5-3, 4 KOs) of San Antonio, Texas in a schedule 6 round fight. Seven fights are schedule, doors open at 7:00 PM first bout 8:00 PM. Tickets are already on sale at the Miccosukee Resort and Gaming 500 SW 177 Ave., Miami, FL and at all Ticketmaster locations Tel: (305) 358-5885 or at www.ticketmaster.com The show is being presented by All Star Boxing, Inc. “The New Generation.” The main event will be televised live at 11:35 PM by the Telemundo Network.
Former world champion Miguel Cotto unleashes a vicious right hand during a training session on Monday in Caguas, Puerto Rico. Kennan Collins, one of Cotto’s sparring partners, said “he is moving really fast, putting in some great hands, the work in the gym has been excellent. He is definitely ready for Jennings.” Cotto meets Jennings on February 21 at Madison Square Garden for the WBO welterweight title.
“Two World Title Fights,One Night” — “Ireland’s” undefeated Middleweight John Duddy(L) greets Hall of Fame Top Rank promoter Bob Arum Monday night after arriving in New York. Duddy is in New York for a press conference Tuesday at Madison Square Garden to promote his upcoming feature fight against Matt Vanda at Madison Square Garden on Top Rank’s “Two World Title Fights,One Night” Pay-Per-View. Two-time world champion Miguel Cotto and WBC World Middleweight Champion Kelly Pavlik will headline this double-header extravaganza on Saturday, Feb. 21 where both superstars will host two world title fights in two different cities ,on the same night and on the same live telecast. Cotto will take on Michael Jennings for the vacant WBO Welterweight Championship at Madison Square Garden and Pavlik will fight #1-rated challenger Marco Antonio Rubio at the Chevrolet Centre in Youngstown, Ohio. Also joining Duddy at the news conference will be his opponent Matt Vanda, top-rated Lightweight Anthony Peterson and undefeated female contender Maureen Shea.
WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko and his mandatory challenger Juan Carlos Gomez met at Hamburg airport yesterday for the first time before stepping into the ring on March 21st in Stuttgart, Germany. Klitschko’s ‘warm reception': “Juan, my friend, I am sorry that I have to beat you up!” The “Black Panther” answered: “I’m so fast, you won’t even hit me – I will beat you up!” (more…)
By Craig Watt
Former two time WBA super-middleweight champion Anthony Mundine (34-3, 23 KO’s) entered into his usual pre-fight “trash” talking yesterday in Sydney at the press conference for his February 11th fight with fellow Aussie Shannon Taylor (48-6-3, 34 KO’s). The 33 year old from Sydney was controversial in his outburst, “I have one message for you Shannon, I want everyone to listen – the mouth is an open grave.” The 36 year old Taylor from Wollongong responded by saying, “It’s is you that mouths off all the time. That is why little old ladies hate you. Ninety-five per cent of people don’t like you. They only come to watch you to see you get beat.” (more…)
Three-time world champion Jorge “Travieso” Arce arrived in Anaheim, California tonight for his world title fight against Vic Darchinyan on Saturday at the Honda Center to be telecast by Showtime. “I’m very happy to be here and I’m looking forward to the fight on Saturday. I have come to shock the world with a victory and take home all the belts,” said Arce upon his arrival. Arce landed in Tijuana on Sunday, trained in Tijuana on Monday, and arrived in Anaheim with his team on Monday night. Arce will take part on various promotional activities leading up to the big fight on Saturday. “I feel great and I will show a lot of people that I belong with the elite in this division,” said Arce, looking confident and sure of himself as he predicted a victory over the current champion.
By Alexey Sukachev and Anton Gorunov
2008 was a breakthrough year for K2 East Promotions, one of the biggest and, surprisingly, the youngest boxing groups in Eastern Europe. Ten regular events have been arranged in a number of Ukrainian cities; Yuri Nuzhnenko has elevated his status of WBA interim welterweight titlist by becoming a regular one, while a bunch of highly touted prospects, including Vyacheslav Uzelkov and Sergey Fedchenko, is on a verge of joining him. Not a bad result for a newly created promotional company, which was started in November 2007, from the former National Box Promotions with a solid help and under aegis of Klitschko brothers. Fightnews sat down with K2 East general director Alexander Krasyuk to know more about its recent activities and future plans. (more…)
World rated light heavyweight Joey “KO Kid” Spina, former USNBC and IBF Intercontinental champion, has rededicated himself for his loyal fans as he prepares for his next fight February 6 at Twin River Event Center in Lincoln, Rhode Island. Spina (23-1-1, 16 KOs), rated No. 14 by the WBO and No. 15 by the WBC, takes on Kansas veteran Matt Gockel (12-9, 7 KOs) in the 8-round main event. The veteran Gockel replaces Steve Walker. Spina, who holds victories against former world champion Carl Daniels and super middleweight contender Jesse Brinkley, has had a somewhat sputtering pro career that he’s vowed to turn around starting Feb. 6.
Unbeaten super bantamweight Teon Kennedy will face his most experienced opponent as a pro when he boxes crowd-pleasing southpaw Paulino Villalobos, of Veracruz, Mexico, in an eight-round contest Friday evening, March 6, at the Legendary Blue Horizon. Topping the seven-fight card will be Mike Jones’ first defense of his NABA welterweight title in a 10-round match with Larry Mosley. (more…)
By Bob Ryder at ringside
Veteran Demetrius Jenkins was unable to slow the progress of fellow Detroit native Darryl Cunningham and was stopped via a third round TKO. Time of the ending was 1:33. Cunningham (172) and Jenkins (167 1/2) fought the first two rounds on fairly even terms before Cunningham unloaded on Jenkins along the ropes, sending him crashing to the canvas. Jenkins was in no condition to continue upon rising and saw his record slide to 21-17-1. In winning the main event before a SRO crowd at the Royal Oak Music Theatre, Cunningham improves to 13-2, 6 KO’s. (more…)
Following his dominating world title unification victory over Christian Mijares, Vic Darchinyan asked reporters at the post-fight press conference “Did I keep my promise (to knock him out)? What about my pound-for-pound ranking? Mijares was No. 6.” Even after a career changing win, the 115-pound IBF, WBC and WBA champ’s fight against Jorge Arce, Feb. 7 on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING, is still about respect. “Against Mijares, I promised to deliver a skillful, smart fight. I promised to destroy him and knock him out. And I did that,” Darchinyan said. “But I still don’t know if I get any respect.” (more…)
WBA heavyweight champion in recess Ruslan Chagaev, his challenger Carl Davis Drumond, WBA super light champion Andreas Kotelnik, his challenger Marcos Maidana, #11 rated heavyweight Denis Boystov and his opponent Israel “King Kong” Garcia were all on hand at today’s prefight press conference for Saturday’s “The Champion Returns” PPV card in Rostock, Germany. Click on the image below for more photos…
Photos: Eroll Popova
By Jeff Pamungkas
WBA featherweight Chris John and his trainer, Craig Christian, stopped by the gym at the Sultan’s Hotel in Jakarta today for some exercise. John and Christian are currently in Jakarta for a week from John’s training camp in Perth, Australia, before their departure tomorrow to Houston, Texas. John will defend against Rocky Juarez on February 28. It will be the first bout in the United States for the long time featherweight champion who has made ten successful title defenses since winning the title in 2003, including a victory over Juan Manuel Marquez.
Featherweight prospect Matt “The Sharp Shooter” Remillard, formerly promoted by CES, has signed an exclusive promotional agreement with Las Vegas based TKO BOXING Promotions. The 22-year-old Remillard is 16-0 with 8 KOs. Most recently he won a unanimous decision over former world champion Mauricio Pastrana in November 13, 2008. Details of Remillard’s first bout under the TKO BOXING Promotions banner will be announced shortly.
Unbeaten WBA heavyweight champion (in recess) Ruslan Chagaev (24-0-1, 17 KOs) and unbeaten challenger Carl Davis Drumond (26-0, 20 KOs) met for the first time today at a press conference held at a VW dealer in Rostock Germany. They will collide in a PPV showdown on Saturday at the StadtHalle in this beautiful Baltic city. This is Chagaev’s first fight since recovering from an achilles tenden operation. With this fight against the WBA #9 rated Drumond, Chagaev plans to test his form and ‘ring feel’ in advance of his rematch with current titleholder, seven-foot ‘Russian Giant’ Nikolai Valuev. (more…)
A decision will be made today on whether ring legend Marco Antonio Barrera will still be able to face Amir Khan on March 14 at the M.E.N. Arenea in Manchester, England. The bout wqs put in question after Barrera was cut during a tune-up bout on Saturday in Mexico. “I spoke to Don King and he told me that hopefully it will be OK,” promoter Frank Warren told The Times. “At the moment, we just don’t know. I am told it was a vertical gash, but we will find out more on Monday….I did not want this fight in Mexico to happen, but I think there was pressure on him to go ahead with it. If the worst comes to the worst, we will have to push it back a couple of weeks, but we don’t want to do that.” More than 15,000 tickets have already been sold for the card.
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