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By Miguel Maravilla
Undefeated WBO super middleweight champion Gilberto “El Zurdo” Ramirez (33-0, 24 KOs) of Mazatlan, Mexico is set to make the first defense of his title when he takes on Dominik Britsch (32-1-1, 11 KOs) of Germany on July 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas live on HBO PPV. “I’m happy to be defending my title. I know nothing about my opponent, all I know is that I am training really hard for this fight,” Ramirez told Fightnews.com®.
After winning the title this past April, Ramirez went back to train in his hometown of Mazatlan, then resumed his camp in Southern California working with his longtime team of Jesus and Hector Zapari in preparation for the German challenger.
“I am training here in the area in Long Beach for this fight,” Ramirez said. “This preparation will be like every other. Training really hard to be ready for what my opponent has.” (more…)
Super middleweight contender George Groves believes he will beat Martin Murray and send him into retirement when the pair clash in an eliminator for the WBA title at London’s O2 Arena on June 25. Murray has lost in four world title shots – three at middleweight and one at super middleweight – and Groves has failed in three cracks at the super middleweight crown. Groves was quick to point out that Murray had been hand-picked for his shots, and he believes he’ll beat Murray and leave his career in tatters.
“I think if he loses he will think about packing it in,” said George. “I can’t speak for Martin but he’s older than me and he’s exhausted all the natural things that a fighter can do to win a world title. He didn’t pull it off at middleweight, he’s moved up to super middleweight and he’s had a crack at Arthur Abraham, and I think he let himself down there. He’s got the domestic dust-up that he’s craved and that’s what is motivating him for this fight, if he doesn’t win then I don’t know where he goes from there. (more…)
Former two-division world champion Jhonny Gonzalez (60-10, 50 KOs) will face Christopher Martin (29-7-3, 9 KOs) on June 18 at the Deportivo Agustin Ramos Millan in Toluca, Mexico. The WBC #5 super featherweight Gonzalez figures to be a big favorite over Martin, but the San Diego fighter has promised to bring it. “Jhonny is a fighter with lots of experience,” said Martin, “he has faced tough opponents, he’s intelligent and very fast, but don’t think that I’ll hold back. Tell him to be careful because if the knockout is there, I’ll go for it!” Gonzalez is the current WBC International Silver super featherweight beltholder, but that title might not be on the line since Martin has lost four of his last five.
Photo: Top Rank
Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach and undefeated lightweight contender Felix “El Diamante” Verdejo both arrived at the hotel in New York City at the same time on Tuesday. WBO #2 rated Verdejo (21-0, 14 KOs) faces Juan Jose ‘Piquet’ Martinez (25-2, 17 KOs) in Saturday’s HBO co-feature in the Theater at Madison Square Garden. Vasyl Lomachenko meets Rocky Martinez for the WBO jr lightweight world title in the main event. Roach trains two-time Olympic gold medalist Zou Shiming of China, who tops the undercard lineup and will be making his U.S. debut.
Roach and Shiming later visited Associated Press Headquarters, then worked out at Mendez Boxing Gym in Manhattan. More photos…
HBO Sports returns to Russia for the first time since 2013 to present world light heavyweight champ Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev’s title defense against challenger Isaac Chilemba (24-3-2, 10 KOs) on Monday, July 11 from the DIVS Arena in Ekaterinburg, Russia. The bout will be tape delayed and air at 10:15 p.m. ET/PT. Two days earlier, the network will televise the rematch between WBA/WBO heavyweight champion Tyson Fury and former titlist Wladimir Klitschko in Manchester, England. That bout will be shown live.
A Team Promotions hosted an open media workout on Monday at Bix Six Academy in Providence for undefeated former world champion Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade (22-0, 15 KOs), who is finalizing preparations for this Saturday’s 12-round WBC super welterweight eliminator against Willie “The Great” Nelson (25-2-1, 15 KOs) of Cleveland, Ohio, in one of three fights on Showtime from Turning Stone Resort Casino in Verona, NY.
“I’m putting myself in the best position to fight for the WBO or WBC title,” said Andrade. “There are rumors of Canelo fighting (WBO champion Liam) Smith. Let me fight Smith and the winner gets Canelo. Or let me fight Canelo with the winner getting Smith…I’m going to knock out the Charlo twins. Both guys have fought on Showtime, so those fights shouldn’t be too difficult to make. Once I take care of business with the Charlo twins, I’ll fight Lara (WBA champion) to clean up the division.” (more…)
Photo: Team Sauerland
Undefeated Ghanaian star Richard Commey (24-0, 22 KOs) is set to face Robert Easter Jr (17-0, 14 KOs) for the vacant IBF World Lightweight title.
The often-avoided fighter, who is mandatory challenger for the IBF strap, was anticipating a showdown with champion Rances Barthlemey, and was ringside to watch the Cuban defend his title against Mickey Bey last Friday.
However, yesterday the IBF announced that Barthlemey has opted to vacate the title rather than face Commey, and have now ordered the 29 year-old to meet Easter Jr, the next highest ranked contender, for the vacant belt.
Both parties have agreed to the fight in writing and have until July 6 to come to an agreement before the IBF calls for purse bids.
Speaking today at a press conference at the Kempiski Hotel in Accra, Ghana, Commey expressed his delight at landing his long-awaited World title shot. (more…)
“Boxeo TELEMUNDO Ford” will kick off its Summer Season Friday, June 24 from the A La Carte Pavilion in Tampa, Florida. The main event will feature a clash between world ranked contenders when WBO Latin super flyweight Champion Ricardo “Meserito” Rodriguez of Mexico City, Mexico faces interim Champion David “Gabo” Quijano of Caguas, Puerto Rico in a bout scheduled for 10 Rounds. Rodriguez (26) ranked #15 WBO, is a series favorite having fought 6 times only losing twice to world ranked contender David Carmona in highly competitive encounters and has a pro record of 13-3, 4 KOs. Quijano (29) on the other hand is ranked #14 WBO, in his last fight defeated Daniel Lozano in the same ring at the A La Carte to capture the interim title and his right to face Rodriguez bringing his record to 16-5-1, 9 KOs. (more…)
Spain isn´t used to seeing big names in their rings. But, on June 18th, Fight Club Albacete in association with Punch Boxing Promotions will present an interesting event at the Pabellón de la Feria in the city of Albacete, with six professional fights including the comeback of welterweight Thomas Dulorme (22-2, 14 KOs) after his defeat against Terence Crawford last year. The Puerto-Rican star is currently training in Spain and wants to reboot his career after more than a year of inactivity. Dulorme will face Jesús “Pantera” Gurrola (22-8-3, 10 KOs) in an eight rounder.
In other action, super lightweight Aik Shakhnazaryan (17-2, 8 KOs) faces Daniel “Cañerito” Ruiz (24-8-2, 24 KOs) in a twelve rounder for the WBA International belt. Lightweight Vage Sarukhanyan (13-1-1, 2 KOs) meets former world champion Gamaliel “El Plátano” Díaz (39-14-3, 18 KOs). And unbeaten super lightweight Manvel Sargsyan (12-0, 8 KOs) will fight against Texan Juan Ocura (11-4, 4 KOs).
Former world champion Canelo Alvarez took the stand Monday in Miami to testify in the trial over a long simmering contractual dispute. Promoter Tuto Zabala Jr. of All Star Boxing is seeking damages from Canelo for breach of contract and from Golden Boy Promotions for tortious interference by signing Canelo when he was still under contract. Canelo acknowledged he signed the document presented in court, but testified he didn’t understand it since it was written in English. Zabala, who is seeking $27 million in damages, testified last week.
Former WBO cruiserweight champion Enzo Maccarinelli (51-7, 33 KOs) will face Dmytro Kucher (23-1-1, 17 KOs) for the vacant EBU European cruiserweight title on Friday night at the famed York Hall in Bethnal Green, London. Maccarinelli is coming off the back of a brutal knockout win over Roy Jones Jr. in Moscow last December.
The same night, super lightweight Kristian “Mr Reliable” Laight (11-225-7, 0 KOs) could be eyeing a rare win when he faces Andy “Thunder” Harris (3-33-1, 0 KOs) at the Grange Leisure Centre in Swindon, England.
WBO #15 super middleweight Jürgen Doberstein (20-2-1, 6 KOs) will take on #5 rated Robin Krasniqi (45-4, 17 KOs) on July 15th at the Saarlandhalle in Saarbrücken, Germany. Both the WBA and WBO Inter-Continental titles will be at stake. Also on the card is local flyweight Mirco Martin (5-0, 1 KO).
Just one week after a loss to Jon Kays, welterweight ‘Smokin’ Ibrar Riyaz (4-98-4, 2 KOs) moved closer to the 100 loss club with a six round decision setback to Tommy Tear (12-1, 1 KO) last Saturday in London. The quite active Riyaz has now fought nine times in 2016.
Did anyone actually believe all that talk of Floyd Mayweather fighting UFC star Conor McGregor?
Strength and conditioning coach Angel “Memo” Heredia says welterweight Phil LoGreco (27-2, 15 KOs) is ready for Joseph Elegele (15-2, 11 KOs) this Sunday on BounceTV in Lakeland, Florida. “He’s ready, he’s on weight, and I don’t see any problems at all. I’m 100% confident he will be victorious Sunday night.”
By Miguel Maravilla
Photo: Mikey Williams/Top Rank
Undefeated WBO jr welterweight champion Terence “Bud” Crawford (28-0, 20 KOs), of Omaha, Nebraska, will have his toughest test when he takes on undefeated WBC champion “The Ice Man” Viktor Postol (28-0, 12 KOs) of Kiev, Ukraine, in a unification bout on July 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas live on HBO Pay-Per-View.
“It’s going to be big. I’m going in there and putting on a spectacular show and showing everybody that I belong here,” Crawford told Fightnews.com®. “I have to make a statement on July 23rd.”
Crawford will be training for the fight in his hometown of Omaha, Nebraska under the watchful eye of his longtime trainer Brian “BoMac” McIntyre. (more…)
WBA cruiserweight world champion Beibut Shumenov (17-2, 10 KOs) hopes WBA (super) and IBF cruiserweight champion Denis Lebedev (29-2, 22 KOs) will go through with a WBA-mandated unification fight this summer. “I have heard rumors that Lebedev doesn’t want to fight me and, if this is true and he relinquishes his WBA super belt, then I want to fight (WBA interim champion Yunier) Dorticos because every organization should only have one champion in each division. I hope this isn’t the case, as I have been waiting to fight Lebedev since I won the WBA interim title (mandatory) back in July of 2015. The WBA has ordered us to fight within 120 days of May 21st. I am ready, willing and able to fight him and I hope he is ready, too.”
When asked if he thinks a deal will be made between his manager Al Haymon and Lebedev’s promoter Andrei Ryabinsky, or will it go to purse bid, Shumenov stated, “It doesn’t concern me, whether it goes to a purse bid, or where the location is. However, I hope the parties can get the best deal worked out for everyone involved.”
Word from the camp of current heavyweight champion Tyson Fury on the passing of the legendary former heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali:
By Peter Fury
We, like everyone else, got news of Muhammad Ali’s passing on Saturday morning. It hit us hard. The man was a living legend. It’s always sad to lose a great champion and they don’t come much greater than Muhammad Ali. It was a sad day for everybody in boxing and everybody in the world. As a little lad growing up, we always used to watch Ali on the TV or listen to his fights on the radio. He was a big part of our lives and a great ambassador for the sport; us young kids definitely looked up to him.
Tyson and Hughie also looked up to him the way we did. He was a gift passed down the generations. It didn’t matter whether you watched him during his prime or not. He was the kind of fighter who will never be forgotten. A great fighter and an even greater human being. (more…)
Legendary streetfighter and pro boxer Kimbo Slice, a.k.a. Kevin Ferguson, has died. ET is reporting that the 42-year-old suffered a fatal heart attack. Tweets by Slice’s promoter Gary Shaw and MMA broadcaster Mauro Ranallo were first indicators that Slice had passed. CBS 12 in West Palm Beach then confirmed the sad news. Earlier today, TMZ Sports reported that Slice had been hospitalized in Florida in “dire condition,” and later also confirmed Slice’s death.
Slice first made his name as an Internet streetfighting phenomenon, then as a popular MMA fighter. However, between August 2011 and January 2013, Slice compiled an unbeaten 7-0 record with six knockouts as a heavyweight in the boxing ring. His most recent fight was an MMA scrap against Dada 5000 in February.
We lost a great dear friend.As mean as he was inside the ropes and inside the cage, that is how nice and great he was, as a friend. Miss you
— gary shaw (@boxing1111) June 7, 2016
— Mauro Ranallo (@mauroranallo) June 7, 2016
Photos: Mikey Williams / Top Rank
Undefeated lightweight prospect and one of the most popular boxers in the Bay Area, Andy “El Tiburon” Vences of San Jose, California, is set to return to the ring on Saturday, July 9 at the Tachi Palace Hotel & Casino in Lemoore, California in a “Solo Boxeo Tecate” show presented by Top Rank.
Vences (15-0, 10 KOs) will be looking for his second win of 2016 when he takes on Moises Delgadillo (15-15-2, 8 KOs) of Guadalajara, Mexico in an eight round bout.
Vences, 25, last fought on February 13 of this year in Studio City, California and took home a eight round unanimous decision win over Yardley Juarez of Mexico.
“I wanted the knockout and worked hard to get it, but Juarez did not want to fight and was happy to survive. It was frustrating, but as a boxer you know you can’t knock everyone out and at the end of day it was good to go eight rounds and I felt great,” said Vences. (more…)
DiBella Entertainment has announced that it has partnered with Foxwoods Resort Casino in Mashantucket, Connecticut, to stage a summer boxing series. “New England Broadway Boxing” will kick off next month, on Thursday, June 30th, with a card headlined by undefeated, world-rated super bantamweight contender Luis Rosa (22-0, 10 KOs) vs. TBA. The series will follow up with its second installment on Thursday, July 21st. The summer series will close out with its final edition sometime in the second half of August. “Foxwoods is one of the great venues for boxing on the East Coast and our (DBE) home away from home in the New England area. We are thrilled to have partnered with our great friends at the Northeast’s premier resort destination to be doing a summer series, featuring some of boxing’s best talent as well as some of the most promising young fighters out of the New England area,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment.
By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Former Aussie lightweight champion Val Borg (12-2, 8 KOs) is a major draw card and talks to Fightnews.com® about wins over IBF #4 Jeff Horn and WBA #13 George Kambosos in the amateur ranks and promises he’ll be back in world ratings soon.
Super middleweight Martin Murray has warned George Groves he’s going to drag him into deep waters and make him crumble when they face-off in a WBA eliminator at London’s O2 on June 25. “I train for fights to go all the way and take my opponents into deep waters,” said Murray. “I’ve shown that I have got a good engine and can sustain a good work rate over 12 rounds. George has stamina issues, that’s well known, the fight favours me late on with him fading and my high work rate over 12 rounds, but it favours him early with his power and I know that, and it makes for an exciting fight.
“I have one of the best defences in world boxing, I’ve been in with better fighters than George who have not been able to get rid of me and I am that confident in this fight that the only way he can beat me is if I lose concentration and get caught with something stupid early. (more…)
By Mauricio Sulaiman
WBC President – Jose Sulaiman’s son
There is no other topic that could be proper for this week’s column. Muhammad Ali has gone onto the path of no return and the world’s response is the greatest memorial one could have – the world has crowned him as “The Greatest of All-Time.” The reaction that has taken place is a celebration of life for a man who changed the world of sports both inside and outside the ring, and a man who fought for his convictions, values and principles, who overcame so many obstacles to make a change and leave a better world for many.
My father, Jose Sulaiman, used to tell a story from one conversation with Muhammad. Ali saw humanity as eternal life, comparing it with all the grains of sand in the desert. Ali said he would paint one grain per year he lived, and then throw them into the desert to see his passing through life with colors until the wind of time would blow them away into eternity. Those 74 grains which Ali has dropped into the desert will certainly be seen by generations to come. (more…)
Looks like IBF #2, WBO #4, WBA #4 and WBC #6 light heavyweight contender Artur Beterbiev (10-0, 10 KOs) could be the first top professional boxer to announce his participation in the 2016 Rio Olympics. Beterbiev’s promoter Yvon Michel has confirmed that Beterbiev has “major interest” in competing in the Olympics. Beterbiev’s trainer Marc Ramsay also stated that he supports Beterbiev 100%. Beterbiev scored a fourth round KO over Ezequiel Maderna (23-3, 15 KOs) last Saturday night at the Bell Center in Montreal, Canada.
On Monday, Beterbiev tweeted the following message:
By Miguel Maravilla
We already knew WBC super featherweight champion Francisco “El Bandido” Vargas and former three-time world champion Orlando “Siri” Salido were must-see TV. But their awe-inspiring twelve round war for the ages on Saturday night at the StubHub Center (also known as “The War Grounds”), surpassed our wildest expectations.
“Tonight we witnessed the fight of the year,” said promoter Oscar De La Hoya at the post-fight press conference. No one in attendance disagreed. (more…)
By Przemek Garczarczyk
Photo: Przemek Garczarczyk
“There are so many great fighters in the light heavyweight division that one mistake takes you out of the pack running for the title for a long time,” says trainer Sam Colonna. “Fonfara knows that well preparing for Smith Jr.” Colonna is training “The Polish Prince” Andrzej Fonfara (28-3, 16 KOs) to take on little-known Joe “The Irish Bomber” Smith Jr. (21-1, 17 KOs) on June 18 at Chicago’s UIC Pavilion in a clash that will be televised on NBC in primetime.
How difficult is to prepare the #2 WBC-ranked fighter Fonfara against an opponent who has managed to stay out of the limelight?
Not easy, but no one ever told me, or Andrew, that life in boxing is supposed to be easy. It’s just like Andrew said himself, nobody knew who he was before the Glen Johnson bout. One win changes everything. This is the story of boxing anyway. There’s almost nothing about Smith Jr. on the Internet – maybe a couple of rounds on YouTube. I spoke about this guy with some of my friends who did see him fighting live to get more info about what we’re up against. For me, Joe Smith Jr. is a better version of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. – better because Smith is accustomed to fighting at 175, hits harder and will be better prepared. I’m expecting an interesting fight. Somewhat, I’m under the impression that Smith’s people are underestimating what Fonfara can do in the ring. (more…)
By Ray Wheatley – World of Boxing
Hall of Fame Broadcaster Colonel Bob Sheridan who called the “Rumble in the Jungle” (Ali vs. Foreman) and the “Thrilla in Manila” (Ali vs. Frazier III) talked to Fightnews.com to pay his respects on the passing of the “Greatest of All-Time”
Muhammad Ali. “It is so humbling to think I will be in the International Hall Of Fame, it is with great sadness that we lay to rest the ‘Greatest Of All Time’ in Muhammad Ali this week,” said the Colonel.
“Within this same week, I will be alongside Ali and so many other greats on the very same ‘Hall Of Fame’ walls. Cassius Clay vs. Sonny Liston was the very first professional fight I ever saw, when I was asked to sell Coca-Cola at the fight in Miami Beach. As a youngster at that fight, I was so overwhelmed by the man who would become Muhammad Ali along with the entire boxing scene. What an influence Ali had on me. (more…)
Professional boxing is set for Saturday night at the Presque Isle Downs Casino in Erie Pa as Ernie Bizzarro’s Bizzarro Promotions features the comeback of Lorain, Ohio welterweight sensation Wilkins “The Hispanic Hurricane” Santiago (12-1-2, 2KOs) as he faces Pittsburgh, PA upset artist, Justin “Baby Boy” Johnson (6-14-4) in the six round main event. The nine bout card will also include a six round contest as undefeated lightweight Thomas “Gunna Man” Mattice (4-0, 3KOs) of Cleveland, Ohio battles it out with Puerto Rico’s Edgardo Rivera (7-2-2, 5KOs). (more…)
By Ricardo Ibarra
Vancouver, Washington’s Virgil “Black Mamba” Green (11-4, 4 KOs) will take on Johnathan Chicas (14-2, 7 KOs), of San Francisco, California this Saturday at the Emerald Queen Casino in Tacoma, Washington, headlining the 106th installment of the long-running boxing series “Battle at the Boat” presented by Brian Halquist Productions.
Green will look to add his first win since losing to unbeaten prospect Miguel Cruz in a nationally televised bout last December. He had been on a three-fight win streak before facing Cruz and losing via seventh round TKO. (more…)
Three-time junior lightweight world champion Roman “Rocky” Martinez will travel to New York on Tuesday to complete his training for his defense against the WBO featherweight champion Vasyl Lomachenkot, to be held on Saturday at The Theater at Madison Square Garden in New York televised on HBO. Martinez (29-2-3, 17 KOs), from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, will defend his WBO belt for the second time versus Lomachenko (5-1, 3 KOs), a two-time Olympic gold medalist and two-time amateur world championships gold medalist. Martinez travels to New York with his team led by his trainer Raul “Papo” Torres and Peter Rivera, Vice-President of PR Best Boxing Promotions (PRBBP).
In 2015, Martinez fought two times against Mexican Orlando “Siri” Salido. The first time, Martinez won a unanimous decision over Salido to become world champion again, while in the second fight the result was a draw.
Lomachenko had two fights in 2015 too. In May, 2015, he beat Puerto Rican Gamalier Rodriguez by KO9, and in November he beat Mexican Romulo Koasicha by TKO10.
By Joe Koizumi
Former world challenger, ex-Japanese national super-feather champ Daiki Kaneko (23-5-3, 15 KOs), 130, proved too sharp and scrappy for elongated compatriot Ribo Takahata, winning a unanimous nod (all 98-91) over ten nearly lopsided rounds on Saturday in Tokyo, Japan. Kaneko once failed to win the WBA 130-pound belt from Takashi Uchiyama via unanimous decision despite dropping the champ with a furious combination in the tenth on New Year’s Eve in 2013. Though raising his stock in spite of his hard-fought defeat, Kaneko, a well-proportioned boxer-puncher, failed to win the OPBF belt, losing a close but unanimous verdict to Jomthong Chuwatana (whom Uchiyama later dismantled in only two rounds in May 2015) and dropped a split duke to compatriot Masao Nakamura on points –in succession. Kaneko this night regained his form, outpunching the taller foe and downing him to the ropes in round two. Though he positively maintained the pressure, Kaneko failed to score a lethal shot only to go the distance given winning good points. Kaneko’s confrontation with the current national champ Kenichi Ogawa will be greatly anticipated.
Upcoming Masaru Sueyoshi (12-1, 7 KOs), 131.75, upset ex-OPBF challenger and one of Eto brothers, Shingo Eto (17-5-1, 9 KOs), 132, by a unanimous decision over eight.
By Gary “Digital” Williams at ringside
A recent accident was not enough to keep undefeated Gaithersburg, MD super welterweight Gerome “GQ” Quigley from scoring a devastating knockout Saturday night in the main event of the Jeter Promotions card at the ABC Sports Complex in Springfield, VA.
Quigley scored a vicious first-round knockout over veteran Reggie “Two-Gun” Nash of Grand Rapids, MI. Quigley rocked Nash with a right hand on top of Nash’s head that dropped him to his knees. Nash was able to recover from that knockdown but a few seconds later, Quigley landed a powerful left-right combination that sent Nash crashing to the canvas. Referee Freddy Corritone did not have to finish the count before the bout was stopped at 2:33. Quigley remains undefeated with a record of 15-0, 14 KO’s while Nash falls to 10-39-1, two KO’s. (more…)
HBO Sports reflects on the life of the legendary Muhammad Ali. Narrated by Liev Schreiber, produced by Bentley Weiner and written by Aaron Cohen.
By Karl Freitag
Photos: Team SES / P. Gercke
Not one, but two clashes between unbeaten heavyweights took center stage at the open air floating stage at Elbauenpark in Magdeburg, Germany.
In the main event WBO #15 heavyweight Tom Schwarz (17-0, 11 KOs) took a one-sided ten round unanimous decision over Dennis Lewandowski (9-1, 4 KOs). Scores were 99-91, 100-90, 99-92. With the win, Schwarz retained his WBO Youth title and added the vacant WBC Youth title to his collection.
In the co-feature, heavyweight Agit Kabayel (15-0, 12 KOs) scored a seventh round KO over Christian Lewandowski (9-1, 9 KOs), brother of main eventer Dennis Lewandowski.
Lightweight Kevin Nieves (10-1-1, 5 KOs) scored an eight round unanimous decision over Alex “Perro” Del Bosque (11-3, 8 KOs) in the main event of a card presented by Miguel Cotto Promotions on Saturday night at the Cosme Beitia Coliseum in Catano, Puerto Rico. Nieves was the winner on all three scorecards by scores of 78-74.
In the co-feature, 18-year old jr welterweight John “E Terrible” Bauza (2-0, 2 KOs) of Catano stopped Mike Erosa (0-8) at the :50 mark of the second round. Bauza had Erosa down in both the first and second round before the referee stopped the fight.
Cruiserweight Kelvin Nunez (14-0, 12 KOs) of Carolina stopped Jonuel Tapia (8-7-1, 5 KOs) in the third round, after stopping him in the fourth round of a bout they had back in February.
Super middleweight Magdiel Cotto (4-0, 4 KOs) stopped Antonio Alicea by first round TKO. Cotto was 167 pounds for this fight but he will now fight at 160 pounds.
Funeral services for legendary three-time world heavyweight champion Muhammad Ali will take place on Friday morning in Louisville, Kentucky. Starting at 9AM, a procession will bring the champ all over town so people can say their goodbyes. The motorcade will pass by the Muhammad Ali Center and through Ali’s old neighborhood before heading to Cave Hill National Cemetery where Ali will be buried in a private ceremony.
At 2PM, there will be a memorial service at the KFC YUM! Center that will be open to the public and will be streamed live at www.alicenter.org. Later a private reception for friends and guests will be held at the Ali Center. The family is requesting that donations be made to the Ali Center in lieu of gifts and flowers.
Photos: Promociones del Pueblo
Former two-time super flyweight world champion Cristian “El Diamante” Mijares (54-8-2, 26 KOs) won a twelve round majority decision over Andres “Jaguarito” Gutierrez (34-0-1, 24 KOs) to claim the vacant WBC silver featherweight title on Saturday night at the Grand Oasis Cancun Hotel Complex in Cancun, Mexico. It was a close fight with Mijares emerging victorious by scores of 114-114, 116-112 and 114-113. Only Mijares was eligible to win the belt as Gutierrez came in four pounds heavy.
By Rocky Morales at ringside
Photos: Chris Farina/Team Salido
Francisco “El Bandido” Vargas and Orlando “Siri” Salido promised a war and they delivered a war on Saturday night at the StubHub Center in Carson, California. After twelve rounds of toe-to-two carnage, the judges couldn’t decide a winner. WBC super featherweight world champion Vargas (23-0-2, 17 KOs) retained his belt with a split draw against Salido (43-13-4, 30 KOs). Scores were 114-114, 114-114 and 115-113 Vargas. Salido outworked Vargas down the stretch, seemed to land the more damaging blows and seemed to finish in better shape than Vargas but it wasn’t enough to dethrone the champion, who did fight well earlier in the bout.
“I feel really good about this decision,” said Vargas. “I knew coming in that I was going to be facing a very tough opponent; however I didn’t expect for him to head butt me and give me so many cuts to the face. Overall, I’m happy I was able to face this skilled warrior. I used powerful jabs and countered with ruthlessness. Takashi Miura was a much more powerful puncher, but my respects to Salido. He is a very tough fighter and has a very strong chin.”
Salido commented, “It was a complicated fight like I expected, a very difficult fight from beginning to end with a lot of action. It was a great spectacle for all the fans. They got what they wanted. They wanted to see blood and they saw blood. I would welcome another fight with him. I believe that I won by a slight margin, but I would welcome a rematch. I would also accept the fight from Takashi Miura or from Lomamcheko. I’ll fight anyone.”
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