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- Wilcox faces Orozco on Thursday
- Santa Cruz and Frampton: First Faceoff
- WBA strips Chagaev + Lucas Browne update
- IBF champion Jonathan Guzman loses $70,000
- Update on Tommy Bagnasco's condition
- Andre Ward-Alexander Brand undercard set
- Orozco, "Jojo" Diaz quick quotes
- Leo Santa Cruz: I Will Stay on Top of Him
- Feigenbutz back in action Saturday
- Review: ShoBox scores a knockout at Foxwoods
- Chocolatito-Cuadras kickoff press conference
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Photos: Peter Amador/Top Rank
Undefeated WBO #2 rated lightweight contender Felix “El Diamante” Verdejo took a day away from his Puerto Rico-based training camp to press the flesh and throw some leather for his fans in New York City. The boxing gem of Puerto Rico made a two-hour special appearance at the 152nd Street Cultural Festival in the Bronx on Saturday, taking the stage to address his fans followed by a meet & greet session and a public workout. Joining Verdejo in the open workout was undefeated boricua featherweight prospect Christopher “Pitufo” Diaz.
Verdejo (21-0, 14 KOs), from San Juan, Puerto Rico, will defend his WBO Latino lightweight title against Juan Jose.Martinez (25-2, 17 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico, on the eve of the Puerto Rican Day Parade, Saturday, June 11, at The Theater at Madison Square Garden. (more…)
Super lightweight Ricky Burns (40-5-1, 14 KOs) became Scotland’s first ever three-weight world champion with a one-sided eighth round KO win over Michele Di Rocco (40-2-1, 18 KOs) on Saturday night at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland. Burns outclassed the WBA #1 rated Di Rocco all the way, dropping him in round three and finishing him in round eight. “Rickster” claimed the vacant WBA 140lb title formerly held by Adrien Broner, who lost the belt on the scale.
British super lightweight champion Tyrone Nurse (33-2-1, 6 KOs) retained his title with a ninth round TKO over local hero Willie Limond (39-5, 11 KOs). Referee Victor Loughlin waved it off at 1:54 to save Limond from further punishment.
Conor Benn (2-0, 1 KO), son of former world champ Nigel Benn, took a four round unanimous decision over Luke Keleher (2-5-1, 1 KO).
2012 Olympic middleweight bronze medalist Anthony Ogogo (9-0, 5 KOs) won by third round stoppage over Chris Herrmann (21-11-1, 12 KOs).
Two-time former cruiserweight world champion Krzysztof “Diablo” Wlodarczyk (51-3-1, 37 KOs) scored a fourth round KO over veteran Kai Kurzawa (37-5, 25 KOs) on Saturday night in Szczecin, Poland. The bout was halted after “Diablo” dropped Kurzawa in both rounds three and four. The 34-year-old Wlodarczyk looked to be in good form as he claimed the vacant IBF Inter-Continental cruiserweight belt.
Heavyweight Krzysztof Zimnoch (19-1-1, 13 KOs) rebounded from his KO1 loss to Mike Mollo in February with a fourth round TKO over “The Sandman” Konstantin Airich (23-17-2, 18 KOs). Zimnoch bludgeoned Airich to the canvas in round four and got a referee’s stoppage with his follow-up attack.
In a clash between unbeaten cruiserweights, Michal Cieslak (13-0, 9 KOs) won by ninth round TKO over Alexander Kubich (9-1, 6 KOs).
WBO light flyweight champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes (38-1-4, 22 KOs) scored a fifth round TKO over former world champion Raul “Rayito” Garcia (38-4-1, 23 KOs) on Saturday at the University of St. La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod City, Philippines. Nietes dropped Garcia twice in round three and mercilessly pummeled him for the rest of the fight. Garcia stayed on his stool after round five. For Nietes, it was the ninth defense of his WBO 108lb title after holding the 105ln belt for four defenses. He has been a world champion since 2007.
IBF #9 super flyweight Arthur Villanueva (29-1, 15 KOs) was declared a KO winner after a violent head clash left Juan Jimenez (22-10, 15 KOs) unconscious in round four. The controversial ending marred a great bout in which both fighters tasted the canvas – Villanueva in round two and Jimenez in round three.
IBF #4, WBO #5 light flyweight Milan Melindo (34-2, 12 KOs), who weighed in 4.75 pounds heavy, won by seventh round technical decision over Maximo Flores (19-3, 13 KOs). The bout was stopped early due to a cut suffered by Melindo. Scores were 69-64, 68-65, 67-66. Flores wasn’t happy with the judges’ scoring.
WBC #1 Ilunga Makabu (19-1, 18 KOs) and local contender Tony Bellew (26-2-1, 16 KOs) both made weight for their clash on Sunday for the vacant WBC cruiserweight title at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England. Makabu weighed 196.5, a few pounds less than Bellew who weighed 199.1. They are fighting for the belt vacated by Grigory Drozd, who twice pulled out of fights with mandatory challenger Makabu due to injuries.
Photos: Zanfer Promotions
Three-time world champion in two division Orlando “Siri” Salido closed his training camp in Mexico and will travel to Los Angeles this Sunday for his battle against WBC Super featherweight champion Francisco “Bandido” Vargas next Saturday, June 4 at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. “I am very satisfied with the way the training camp went and I am ready to take on Francisco Vargas on June 4 and look forward to give the fans a great fight,” said Salido, from his hometown of Ciudad Obregon, Sonora where he has been training for the fight.
Vargas (23-0-1, 17 KOs) of Mexico City will be making the first defense of the title against Salido (43-13-3, 30 KOs, 1 NC) in the main event of a card promoted by Golden Boy Promotions that will be telecast on HBO.
“I am very anxious to in the ring and very motivated that I will face a great champion and fight for prestigious WBC belt a championship that I have dreamed of fighting for since I was 12 years Old and saw my idol Julio Cesar Chavez wear it with pride and honor,” said Salido. (more…)
By Joe Koizumi
Photo by Boxing Beat
Former WBO 105-pound champ, unbeaten enfant terrible who won the world belt in his fifth pro bout, Kosei Tanaka (6-0, 3 KOs), still 20, will participate in his first bout today (Saturday) after renouncing the belt to campaign in the 108-pound category when he faces IBF#10 ranked light-fly contender Rene Patilano (15-1-2, 7 KOs) over ten non-title rounds in Nagoya, Japan. The confident-looking Tanaka said, “I’ll knock him out. I won’t see nothing but a knockout over Patilano.” But he should be careful and cautious since a Filipino fighter is usually tough and ambitious as shown by a latest stunning upset victory of John Riel Casimero over Amnat Ruenroeng in China this Wednesday. Take care, Tanaka.
By Bob Caico at ringside
Unbeaten WBO #11, WBA #12, IBF #15 heavyweight Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller (17-0-1, 15 KOs) made quick work of overmatched Nick Guivas (12-4-2, 9 KOs), scoring a second round KO on Friday night at Seneca Niagara Resort & Casino in Niagara Falls, New York. The 6’4 Miller, who weighed in at 283 pounds, dropped Guivas twice in round one, and two more times in round two. Time was 1:26.
In the best fight of the night, super welterweight Skender Halili (10-1, 10 KOs) prevailed in a thriller against Jason Thompson (5-12-4, 4 KOs). It looked like an upset was brewing when Thompson knocked down Halili twice in round two. But Halili not only survived, he knocked out Thompson with a crushing right hand in the same round. Time was 2:59.
Unbeaten Filipino lightweight Harmonito “El Huracan de Gensan” Dela Torre (18-0, 12 KOs) won an eight round majority decision over journeyman Guillermo Sanchez (15-19-1, 6 KOs). Making his U.S. debut, Dela Torre didn’t deliver the big KO splash he was hoping for, but his workrate made the difference against crafty local southpaw Sanchez. Scores were 78-74, 77-75 and 76-76. (more…)
Photo: Marcelino Miguel Castillo Gonzalez
WBA interim welterweight champion David “Ava” Avanesyan (21-1-1, 11 KOs) and multi-division former world champion “Sugar” Shane Mosley (49-9-1, 41 KOs) both made weight for their world title clash on Saturday night at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. Avanesyan weighed 146.7 pounds and Mosley scaled in at 146 pounds even.
The bout will be televised on CBSSN. The Avanesyan-Mosley winner gets the Thurman-Porter winner next.
The WBO has informed representatives of WBO cruiserweight champion Krzystof Glowacki and Oleksandr Usyk that a purse bid will be held June 9 at the Affinia Hotel in New York City. The minimum acceptable bid is $300,000. WBO President Francisco “Paco” Valcárcel will preside. Glowacki (26-0, 16 KOs) will be making the second defense of his title. Usyk (9-0, 9 KOs) is the 2012 Olympic heavyweight gold medalist and the WBO’s #1 contender.
By Gabriel F.Cordero
Nery Saguilan 134.65 vs Marcos Villasana Jr. 134
(WBC regional lightweight title)
Lourdes Juárez 108 vs Suri Tapia 108
Diego Cruz 141 vs Francisco Pérez 140
Enrique Ángeles Jr 123 vs Daniel Olea 121
Venue: Centro de Convenciones de Acapulco
Promoter: Promociones del Pueblo
TV: Televisa (Mexico)
Miguel Vazquez 143.6 vs. Erick Bone 144
Miguel Flores 127.2 vs. Ruben Tamayo 127
Brandon Figueroa 120.4 vs. Jonell Nieves 121
Rickey Edwards 137.2 vs. John Delperdang ??
Emmanuel Medina 146.8 vs. Isaiah Robinson 145.6
Enrique Niera Jr 164.3 vs. Rudy Lozano 163
Ramon Cardenas 122 vs. Isau Duenez 120.08
Xavier Wilson 136 vs. Anthony Hill 136
Rolando Garza 153.4 vs. Rick Graham 154
Venue: Cowboys Dance Hall, San Antonio, Texas
Promoter: Leija*Battah Promotions
TV: Fox Sports 1
By Marco Bratusch
Light heavyweight Mehdi Amar (33-4-2, 16 KOs) pounded out a twelve round unanimous decision over Serhiy Demchenko (16-10-1, 12 KOs) to claim the vacant EBU (European) light heavyweight title on Friday night at the Cirque d’Hiver in Paris, France. Demchenko brought constant pressure for the whole fight but was too slow and defensively sloppy. Amar was able to use his left hook as a counter and kept the distance using lateral movements. A clash of heads marked Demchenko under his right eye in round five. The knockdown scored by Amar in round nine was due to a jab landed along with a Demchenko slip, as the deck was wet near the Amar red corner. Amar appeared pretty tired in the championship rounds when Demchenko tried to force the brawl from the inside but the Italian (he has a double passport) had already lost his power to close matters. Scores were 115-112, 115-113, 116-111.
Boxing Royalty: “Sugar” Shane Mosley works with trainer Roberto “Hands of Stone” Duran during a fight week workout in preparation for Saturday night’s world title challenge against WBA interim welterweight beltholder David “Ava” Avanesyan at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. (Photo: Jason Gonzalez/Hector Madrigal)
Ricky Burns (39-5-1, 13 KOs) and #1 rated Michele Di Rocco (40-1-1, 18 KOs) both made weight for their clash for the vacant WBA super lightweight title on Saturday night at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland. Burns, who’s trying to become Scotland’s first ever three-weight world champion, weighed 139.125, while Di Rocco scaled in at 139.25. They are fighting for the title formerly held by Adrien Broner, who lost the belt on the scale.
Willie Limond 139.5 vs. Tyrone Nurse 140
Anthony Ogogo 161.4 vs. Chris Hermann ??
Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum’s Top Rank Boxing returns to Downtown Dallas on Saturday, June 25th. After an exciting series opening event last January 16th, boxing at The Bomb Factory Fight Club is back. Scheduled as the featured attraction is former world jr. lightweight champion Mike Alvarado (35-4, 24 KOs), who will battle Josh Torres (15-4-2, 7 KOs) in an eight round welterweight main event.
Headlining the undercard will be 2-time Russian Olympian and now middleweight contender Matt Korobov (25-1, 13 KOs) and undefeated jr. lightweight prospect Eric De Leon (12-0, 6 KOs). Korobov will be taking on former top-ten world contender Brian Vera (23-10, 14 KOs) in an eight round super middleweight feature bout. De Leon, who is originally from Dallas, will be fighting an eight round jr lightweight bout against an opponent to be named. (more…)
By Marco Bratusch
Tonight in Paris, France, MK Events will present an intriguing card at the famous Cirque d’hiver. Originally billed as a tripleheader, the card ran into trouble earlier this week when both local champion Cedric Vitu and Catalan fighter Isaac Real suffered minor injuries as they were finalizing preparations for their EBU junior middleweight clash. Another injury KO’d Italian junior welterweight Samuele Esposito, who was scheduled to fight Frank Petijean (16-4-3, 2 KOs) for the vacant minor EU title – the Frenchman will likely be part of the card anyhow in a stay busy fight.
The third headlining bout is still on between two-time interim middleweight beltholder Hassan N’Dam N’Jikam (32-2, 18 KOs) and Poland’s Robert Swierzbinski (16-5-1, 3 KOs), who will fight in an eight rounder.
The unexpected scenario brought a fight between French light heavyweight Mehdi Amar (32-4-2, 16 KOs) and Ukrainian-born, longtime Rome resident Serhiy Demchenko (16-9-1, 12 KOs) as the main event of the show, with the two fighting for the vacant 175lb EBU belt. (more…)
By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Unbeaten Australian 168-pounder Bilal Akkaway (13-0-1, 11 KOs) stopped Francisco Ramon Benitez (15-4, 12 KOs) in round one of scheduled ten round main event at the Entertainment Centre, Hurstville, NSW, Australia on Wednesday. Akkaway delivered a perfectly timed left hook to the head of Benitez in round one and the referee called it off at 1:27. The WBC Eurasia Pacific Boxing Council title and the WBA Oceania title were up for grabs. Argentina’s Benitez had been to Australia twice in 2015 losing in two rounds to WBO rated Rohan Murdoch and in three rounds to Mike Jiminez. (more…)
Hayemaker Promotions and UKTV have announced that “Haye Day II,” featuring former WBA heavyweight champion David Haye’s quick KO over Arnold Gjergjaj and former WBO heavyweight champion Shannon Briggs’ even quicker KO over Emilio Zarate, was part of the “Dave” network’s biggest day in its history. Haye Day II drew a peak audience of 2.5 million with a 14.8% adult audience share, greater than both ITV and C4 and second only to BBC1 at that time. Haye promised Briggs a fight if Briggs won on the undercard, so now the pair will clash potentially in September.
Story by John DiSanto – PhillyBoxingHistory.com
Photos by Darryl Cobb Jr. – dcobbjr.com
Atlantic City middleweight DeCarlo Perez, 15-4-1, 5 KOs, held an open workout for the media and the public, Thursday afternoon at the Joe Hand Boxing Gym in Philadelphia. The event promoted DeCarlo’s upcoming main event against Dashon Johnson, 20-19-3, 6 KOs, of California. The pair will face off in an anticipated, 164-pound, 10-rounder, at the 2300 Arena on Friday, June 3rd.
The fight tops an 8-bout card, and is nicknamed “He’s Backkkkk!”, a reference to Johnson’s last visit to Philadelphia, when he made an impression on local boxing fans three months ago.
In that fight, Johnson lost a 10-rounder to Philly’s Jesse Hart, but gave the undefeated prospect much more trouble than anyone expected. Johnson floored Hart in the final round and proved himself to be a very tough test.
Perez hopes that his turn against Johnson will be a springboard back to the win column, after losing his last outing, a January fight with Rob Brant. (more…)
WBO light flyweight champion Donnie “Ahas” Nietes (37-1-4, 21 KOs) and challenger Raul “Rayito” Garcia (38-3-1, 23 KOs) both made weight on Friday for their world title clash on Saturday at the University of St. La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod City, Philippines. Nietes and Garcia both scaled in at the division limit of 108 pounds.
The late wagering line continues to fluctuate for Saturday’s clash between WBA interim welterweight beltholder David “Ava” Avanesyan and ring legend “Sugar” Shane Mosley on Saturday night at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona. On Thursday, bettors continued to put money on Avanesyan, driving the number up to -280 for the Russian champion, with Mosley backers getting +240. Then a surge of Mosley money came in to drive the price back to -265 for Avanesyan and +225 for Mosley. At the beginning of the week, Avanesyan was just a slight favorite at -165 with Mosley at +145.
The cause of the uncertainty is the 27-year-old Avanesyan (21-1-1, 11 KOs) has yet to face a top flight opponent, while 44-year-old future Hall of Famer Mosley (49-9-1, 41 KOs) has beaten many, but not for many years. The Avanesyan-Mosley winner gets the Thurman-Porter winner next.
By Boxing Bob Newman
The 33rd IBF awards banquet was held last night in the grand ballroom at the NUO Hotel in Beijing, China. A packed house enjoyed fine dining (including traditional Peking Duck), musical entertainment, acrobatic performances and of course, the presentation of awards for the best of 2015.
Accepting awards were:
Amnat Ruenroeng- Jersey Joe Walcott Award, Most Title Defenses, Championship Ring for 3 or more title defenses
Cecilia Braekhus- Female Fighter of the Year Award
Trent Broadhurst & Rob Powdrill- Pan Pacific Fight of the Year Award
Saita Promotions- Most Active Promoter IBF Female
Jimmy’s Boxing- Most Active Promoter IBF Pan Pacific
Naoko Shibata- Championship Ring for 3 or more title defenses (Saita Promotions accepting)
Ring 44 has announced the 2016 class that will be inducted into the Buffalo Boxing Hall of Fame on September 23rd to be held at Ilio DiPaolo’s Restaurant in Buffalo. The four new Hall of Fame members to be inducted at Ring 44’s 20th annual dinner and awards ceremony are:
Dave Moretti: Niagara Falls, NY native. Now boxing judge out of Las Vegas. Records indicate began judging in 1977 primarily in Nevada, but has also judged in Oregon, Florida, New Jersey, as well as Mexico, Australia and Japan. He has served as professional judge in over 100 World title contests.
Kelly Swanson: Buffalo, NY native. Swanson ranks among boxing’s public relations powerhouses for over 20 years. Clients included Riddick Bowe, Floyd Mayweather, Oscar De La Hoya and Bernard Hopkins among others.
Billy Tompkins: Buffalo, NY native. Fought professionally from 1991-1998 with a 14-2 (10 KOs) record. Also had an impressive amateur career representing his hometown.
Top Rank, Inc. is ready to promote “The Heavyweight Debate: Donald Trump vs. Bernie Sanders.” The idea of the debate was first proposed on Wednesday night when Trump appeared on Jimmy Kimmel Live, and Kimmel asked Trump if he would consider it. Trump’s response to Kimmel was “We would have such high ratings and I think I should take that money and give it to some worthy charity.”
Enter Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “It’s the debate of the century between two of the top pound for pound politicians in the country — Mr. Trump, the Republican Party’s presumptive nominee and Senator Sanders, the Democratic candidate,” said Arum, CEO and Founder of Top Rank. “We have two contenders ready, willing and able to go mano a mano over the most important issues facing the United States. And I am ready to promote it.”
Top Rank’s proposal is as follows:
- – Top Rank will negotiate a site fee from a major U.S. venue for the debate
- – Top Rank will produce and distribute the debate live on pay-per-view throughout the U.S.
- – Top Rank will distribute the debate via closed-circuit to establishments in the U.S., including but not exclusive to, bars, restaurants, and movie theater chains
- – 80% of the net proceeds will go to the charity or charities of the candidates’ choice, agreed upon in advance, with a minimum of $20 million being donated
- – The moderator or moderators will be subject to the approval of the candidates
Lucian Bute was informed of the results of the anti-doping test done after his World Boxing Council (WBC) world title fight against Badou Jack, April 30, in Washington, D.C. As reported in a statement sent by the WBC, the Washington D.C. Boxing and Wrestling Commission informed them that Bute tested positive for Ostarine, in an A sample analysis, after the bout.
“I am surprised and sorry about this. I don’t understand what led to this positive result,” Bute said. “I have always passed every anti-doping test that I was asked to take since I won a world title. More recently for my fight against James DeGale, in Quebec City, last November, I was tested eight times from before my training camp until after my fight. I have never taken any illegal products. I have a complete trust in my team. There will be an analysis of the B sample and I am sure that this result will be negative.”
Bute’s promoter Yvon Michel stated, “GYM has always been strongly in favor of a strict anti-doping policy to keep the sport of boxing clean. We are really surprised by this first result and we now hope that the B sample proves that the first result was wrong. Until then, we support Lucian Bute.”
Jarrell Miller 283 vs. Nick Guivas 229.6
Harmonito Dela Torre 131 vs. Guillermo Sanchez 125.6
Malik Hawkins 148 vs. Richard Hall 143.2
Skender Halili 151.8 vs. Jason Thompson 152.8
Nick Casal 148.6 vs. Antonio Chaves Fernandez 148.4
Saadiq Muhammad 162.2 vs. Eric Plumeri 160
Promoter: Greg Cohen Promotions, Salita Promotions, FightCard Productions and Winner Take All Productions
Venue: Seneca Niagara Casino & Resort
TV: CBS Sports Network (9 PM EST)
The World Boxing Council has been notified by the D.C. Boxing and Wrestling Commission about an adverse finding for the banned substance “Ostarine” in the postfight anti-doping test from Lucian Bute. Bute challenged Badou Jack for the WBC super middleweight championship in Washington, D. C. on April 30, 2016, which resulted in a draw .
The D.C. Boxing and Wrestling Commission will follow its rules and regulations regarding antidoping and will be in consultation with the WBC and its Clean Boxing Program. Further news will be known in the coming days.
A battle between exciting welterweights Phil Lo Greco (27-2, 15 KOs) and Joseph Elegele (15-2, 11 KOs) will serve as the 10-round main event of PBC’s next Bounce TV card on June 12 from The Lakeland Center in Lakeland, FL. Televised coverage will also feature unbeaten Australian prospect Steve Lovett (15-0, 12 KOs) against Craig Baker (16-1, 12 KOs) in a 10-round light heavyweight showdown.
Isiah Seldon 156 vs Eddie Edmond 158
Chuck Mussachio 183 vs Willis Lockett 205.3
Adrian Wilson 147.3 vs Quan Johnson 148.6
Soloman Maye 226.7 vs Quian Davis 253
LeRoy Davila 116.9 vs Dominic Whitehurst 117.5
Nick Kisner 197.8 vs Lamont Capers 196.2
Promoter: Rising Promotions
Venue: The Claridge Hotel in Atlantic City
Photo: Lawrence Lustig
Cruiserweight Tony Bellew (26-2-1, 16 KOs) has warned WBC #1 Ilunga Makabu (19-1, 18 KOs) that he will not deny him his dream world title win when they clash for the vacant WBC strap at Goodison Park in Liverpool on Sunday. “There’s nothing he can do to beat me,” said Bellew. “Boxing is a brutal sport and he has to make it as brutal as possible but I don’t believe he has the size and structure to do it. He’s going to come in light which will be a bad mistake. The advantages he usually has in fights are through speed and power – he’s normally faster than his opponents and punches harder than them too.
“In this fight, I don’t think he’ll have those against me. I’ve carried my speed from light heavyweight to cruiserweight, and I don’t think he’s got more power than me. I’ll be the bigger man, I’ll make it show and I am the real cruiserweight. Look at when I am stood next to Johnny Nelson – we’re the same size, and Johnny Nelson was known as one of the monster cruiserweights, well so am I. (more…)
Elite matchmaker Hedi Taouab has passed away after a long illness. A legend in boxing circles, Hedi worked with Universum Box-Promotion and later SES Boxing. He was well-known for decades throughout the world for his enormous personality. The entire team of SES Boxing, in particular Ulf and Peggy Steinforth, are deeply affected by his passing.
“For our athletes and trainers, as a ‘matchmaker’ he put together many big fights, title opportunities and world championships,” said SES in a statement “For SES Boxing, he was one of the key people behind the scenes. His expertise and negotiating skills with promoters, managers and the national and international associations was undisputed and ‘hard,’ but always fair. He leaves a large void in the sport of boxing and will be irreplaceable for many boxers, trainers, managers, and promoters in the world.
“SES Boxing mourns alongside his family in Koblenz. Our sympathies go to all boxers and trainers, for he was an “uncle” to all of us. We in Magdeburg will never forget him. So long “Uncle!”
By Karl Freitag
Four world title bouts are on tap for this Saturday. One in the Philippines, one in the U.S. and two in the U.K.
It all kicks off Saturday at the University of St. La Salle Coliseum in Bacolod City, Philippines, when WBO light flyweight champion Donnie Nietes (37-1-4, 21 KOs) defends his 108lb belt against Raul “Rayito” Garcia (38-3-1, 23 KOs). In his career, WBO light flyweight world champion Nietes is 14-0-1 against Mexican boxers (with the draw avenged by KO). Can Garcia end the streak?
Later that day at the SSE Hydro in Glasgow, Scotland, Ricky Burns (39-5-1, 13 KOs) tries to become Scotland’s first ever three-weight world champion when he takes on #1 rated Michele Di Rocco (40-1-1, 18 KOs) for the vacant WBA super lightweight title formerly held by Adrien Broner, who lost the title on the scale.
Saturday action wraps up at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona, when WBA interim welterweight champion David Avanesyan (21-1-1, 11 KOs) defends his belt against 44-year-old future Hall of Famer “Sugar” Shane Mosley (49-9-1, 41 KOs). The winner will face the Thurman-Porter winner for the full title.
On Sunday, the vacant WBC cruiserweight title will be on the line at Goodison Park in Liverpool, England. Local hero Tony Bellew (26-2-1, 16 KOs) meets WBC #1 Ilunga Makabu (19-1, 18 KOs) for the belt vacated by Grigory Drozd, who twice pulled out of fights with mandatory challenger Makabu due to injuries.
Late wagering continues to flow in the direction of WBA interim welterweight beltholder David “Ava” Avanesyan. Two days ago, he was a slight -165 favorite against 44-year-old ring legend “Sugar” Shane Mosley. Today, the 27-year-old Russian champion has jumped to a -260 favorite. On the other hand, if Mosley wins the payout to his backers has moved from +145 to +220. They collide Saturday night at the Gila River Arena in Glendale, Arizona.
Undefeated WBC #1-ranked lightweight contender Dejan Zlaticanin (17-0, 10 KOs) has vowed that he will destroy unbeaten WBC #2 ranked Emiliano Marsili (32-0-1, 14 KOs) when they meet for the vacant WBC lightweight world championship on June 11 at the Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, NY. “I think those who underestimated me were wrong all along, but I will put some good shots on him and he’ll go down. I will knock him out,” proclaimed Zlaticanin, who hails from the Southeastern European country of Montenegro. “I think they [fans] will cheer for me like I am a home fighter and I will do my best to bring the good fight.”
Regarding Marsali, Zlaticanin stated, “He’s a boxer. He’s smart, but he has no power. He will try to box, keep a distance and use his height advantage. He will use his footwork to keep me at bay, but it won’t work.”
Zlaticanin and Marsili will be fighting for the belt left vacant by the oft-injured Jorge Linares, who was reclassified as “champion in recess” by the WBC as he recovers from a hand injury.
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