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Text & photos by Chris Cozzone
A press conference introducing the three opening PPV-televised bouts and undercard for Saturday night’s Manny Paquiao-Shane Mosley card was held today at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. In the co-main, WBO Super Bantamweight Champion Wilfredo Vazquez (20-0-1, 17 KOs) will take on former champ Jorge Arce (56-6-2, 43 KOs). Former middleweight king Kelly Pavlik (36-2, 32 KOs) makes his long-awaited return against undefeated Alfonso Lopez (21-0, 16 KOs) in a ten-round super middleweight bout; and in the opening PPV bout, Mike Alvarado (29-0, 21 KOs) takes on Ray Narh (25-1, 21 KOs) for the WBC Continental Americas title. Pictured: Arce tells Vazquez to hush his promises of victory Saturday night.
Kelly Pavlik: “I’m fighting a kid who’s hungry, undefeated and I did not take him lightly. I’m pumped and feel the best in my whole career.”
Alfonso Lopez: “We all know what Kelly Pavlik brings to the table, but I did what I had to do in the gym. I came here to win.”
Jorge Arce: “Only thing I know is, I’m winning by knockout.”
Wilfredo Vazquez: “He is talking about a knockout – he is crazy. It isn’t going to happen. I will be victor Saturday night.”
Mike Alvarado: “This fight will bring me to the next level. I’m ready for the champions out there.”
Ray Narh: “I’m here to take care of business. My hands will be raised high on Saturday night. Let’s do this.”
There isn’t much left to say that hasn’t been said already.
Manny Pacquiao is supposed to win. “Sugar” Shane Mosley is too old to deal with Pacquiao’s speed and is a huge underdog. Pacquiao isn’t distracted by his seemingly endless amount of side activities. Mosley is ready to shock the world. If you listen to the talk surrounding the fight, it is a foregone conclusion what will transpire on Saturday night. But that’s why talk is cheap . . . Click here for more
By Bob Caico
Heavyweight Donnell “The Real Touch of Sleep” Holmes (32-1-2, 28 KOs) returns to the ring on May 20th at The Longbranch Entertainment Complex in Raleigh, North Carolina. He will be featured against an opponent to be named in the main event of Paul Marinaccio’s Jaw Breaker Promotions card. This will be Holmes’ second fight since losing a controversial technical decision to Brian Minto in 2009 and his first start in over a year. Also on the card will be Raleigh resident and Buffalo native John “Bang Bang” Butler (22-3) and undefeated Vernon Alston of Durham.
By Gabriel F. Cordero
Manny Pacquiao, WBO welterweight world champion and elected congressman from the Philippine province of Sarangani, has announced that he will be wearing yellow gloves in the ring against Sugar Shane Mosley on Saturday night to support the Gawad Kalinga organization that has built more than 50,000 homes and helped more 500,000 people in poverty in the Philippines. Pacman says the yellow color symbolizes the fight against poverty. “The biggest fight of my life is not in boxing but is to end poverty in my country. On Saturday I will be using yellow gloves representing the drive to fight poverty and I encourage everyone to wear yellow on Saturday and help me carry this message of unity further.”
By Gabriel F. Cordero
IBF super flyweight Cristian Mijares will not be facing mandatory challenger Raul Martinez on May 14th in Durango. Martinez pulled out after suffering a cut in sparring. IBF #15 Oscar “Ceviche” Ibarra has already said he’s ready to step in against Mijares instead. Oswaldo Kuchle of Promociones del Pueblo confirmed that ‘Ceviche’ is interested in the fight and has been training for several weeks. Ibarra is also the WBC silver titlist.
By Rey Colón -The Sport Press
Orlando Piñero, manager of former WBO featherweight champion Juan Manuel López, has received a summary suspension pending the conclusion of an administrative hearing from the Boxing Commission of Puerto Rico to following the events of April 16 at the Ruben Rodriguez Coliseum, Bayamon, where his previously undefeated fighter lost his belt to Orlando Salido. Piñero’s furious post-fight protest in the ring sparked a riot where the mayor of Guaynabo, Hector O’Neill, allegedly received a head wound from a thrown object.
By Bill Green
Photo: Chris Farina/Top Rank
Unbeaten boxing prospect Mike Alvarado (29-0, 21 KOs) will break from training camp and arrive in Las Vegas on Wednesday as he makes final preparations for this Saturday’s May 7th bout against “Sugar Ray Nahr (25-1, 21 KOs). Alvarado and Nahr will open the televised part of the Pacquiao-Mosley pay-per-view. The junior welterweight fight will be for the vacant WBC Continental Americas light welterweight title. Alvarado is coming off an easy TKO win over England’s Dean Harrison back on Feb 19th. The 30-year-old Colorado native boasts an impressive undefeated record of 29-0 with 21 KOs. Alvarado holds wins over former WBC lightweight champ Cezar Bazan (KO4) and former NABF champ Michael Clark (TKO1). (more…)
By Joe Koizumi
We are looking forward to watching no less than five world title bouts in a couple of weeks here in Japan. On Saturday, in Osaka, WBA bantam champ Koki Kameda (24-1, 15 KOs) will make his initial defense against Nicaraguan Daniel Diaz (18-2, 13 KOs) over twelve rounds.
On Sunday, in Tokyo (at the Korakuen Hall), there will be a female WBC title triple-header that was postponed for eight weeks from March 12 because of the earthquake happening just after the weigh-in ceremony. WBC 108-pound champ Naomi Togashi (8-0, 4 KOs) will defend her belt against Filipino Jujeath Nagaowa (9-9-1, 5 KOs) over ten two-minute rounds. WBC 102-pound titlist Momo Koseki (10-2-1, 2 KOs) will put her belt on the line against unbeaten Thailander Krikanok Islandmuaythai (4-0-1, 2 KOs). WBC 105-pound queen Anabel Ortiz (7-1, 1 KO), from Mexico, will face ex-amateur champ Nahoko Fujioka (5-0, 3 KOs) with her throne at stake. This event is presented by WBC Cares and Gen International.
On May 17, also at the Hall in Tokyo, WBA female super-fly champ Tsunami Tenkai will make her fourth defense against Thailander Petchsairoong Looksaikongdin over ten.
The busy fistic schedule may symbolize this country’s steady effort for restoration after the horrible earthquake and tsunami disaster.
Photo and report by Phil Doherty
The Heavyweight Factory boxing gym in Hollywood Florida received a surprise visitor this afternoon when WBO, IBF, IBO and Ring magazine world heavyweight champion Wladimir “Dr. Steelhammer” Klitschko (55-3, 49 KO’s) stopped in for some “light” conditioning. Klitschko mercilessly assaulted one of the gym’s heavy bags for almost 20 straight rounds until the hapless sack tore off the iron cross beam securing it. No worries for Klitschko as he nonchalantly stepped to his right and continued pounding the next bag in line. (more…)
Former lightweight world champion Michael Katsidis has returned to Australia, setting up camp in his hometown of Toowoomba, Queensland. Despite back-to-back losses to the two men regarded as the best in the lightweight division, Juan Manuel Marquez and Robert Guerrero, the options for crowd-favorite Katsidis were many. However, he recently turned down the chance to fight in Las Vegas on July 30 where it was anticipated he would face Mexican great Erik Morales. But Katsidis said this week his focus was to lock in a date to fight in Australia, something he has not done since June 2006.
“My last 10 fights have been overseas and I think now is the time for me to come back to Australia and bring and bring an international opponent into my country,” Katsidis said. “This is something I’ve been looking forward to for a long time, but until now, the timing just hasn’t been right. It’s been a tough six months for me personally and I feel it is really important to come home and fight.” (more…)
Photo: OPI 2000
Former WBC cruiserweight world champion Giacobbe Fragomeni (28-3-1, 12 KOs) won the vacant WBC International cruiserweight title by TKO in round 7 against Laszlo Hubert (29-8, 19 KOs) last Saturday in Texcoco, Mexico. The fight was promoted by Salvador Briman and OPI 2000 (Salvatore and Christian Cherchi) and was televised by SPORTITALIA in Italy.
The opponents change, but the approach remains the same for super middleweight prospect Vladine Biosse. Coming off a major showcase victory on April 1st in front of 42 million homes on ESPN2, Biosse (11-0, 6 KOs) is preparing to face a much tougher test Friday, May 6th, 2011 against Denis Grachev (9-0-1, 5 KOs) in the main event of “Champion Breed,” presented by Jimmy Burchfield’s Classic Entertainment & Sports at Foxwoods Resort Casino’s Fox Theater in Mashantucket, Conn. (more…)
Photos and report by Ricardo Conde
Fast rising welterweight Hugo ‘The Boss’ Centeno (7-0, 6 KOs) of Oxnard, California will return to action on Friday, June 3rd at the Warner Center Marriot in Woodland Hills, California against an opponent yet to be determined in a 6-round welterweight bout which is being presented by Art of Boxing Promotions and Bash Boxing. In his last outing, the 20-year old Hugo Centeno defeated Jiovanni Rubio (7-14, 4 KOs) of Santa Rosa, California via unanimous decision last month, headlining for the first time in front of a sold out crowd of 1,382 fans at the Hangar at the Orange County Fair and Event Center in Costa Mesa, California, in the second installment of Roy Englebrecht Promotions ‘Fight Club OC’. For more details and photos click here…
All the shots from today’s final press conference for Manny Pacquiao vs. Sugar Shane Mosley: Click here
Special 2-Fight Episode of TUF Tonight: Four fighters enter the Octagon tonight on an all new Ultimate Fighter – can Team Lesnar take the lead as the preliminary round nears the end? Don’t miss an all new episode tonight at 9pm on SPIKE (in the US) and at 10pm on Rogers Sportsnet in Canada
CORRECTION – STRIKEFORCE Challengers Tickets On Sale Next Week: Live Friday, June 24 at the ShoWare Center in Kent, WA – UFC Fight Club Presale starts Tuesday, May 10 at 10am PT Tickets>
Dos Anjos Steps In For Dunham Against George Sotiropoulos At UFC 132: An injury has forced lightweight Evan Dunham out of his contest against George Sotiropoulos, and will be replaced by Rafael dos Anjos on July 2 in Vegas Fight Card Updates>
By Andreas Hale
Manny Pacquiao and “Sugar” Shane Mosley pose for the media at today’s final press conference held at the MGM’s Hollywood Theater in Las Vegas.
J Prince: “It’s an honor and a privilege to be here today to witness one of the biggest upsets in the history of boxing; that’s “Sugar” Shane Mosley beating Manny Pacquiao.”
Nazeem Richardson: “All we keep hearing about is age and is age a factor. What we fail to forget is that we’re not talking about an ordinary guy getting older in the ring. We’re talking about a special guy. This guy is a legend. . . . Mosley is bringing his own set of weapons to the plate and Pacquiao is going to see difficulties that he has never seen before”
Shane Mosley: “This fight is going to be a terrific fight. We’re both warriors, we both love to fight and we’re both winners. When you get two winners in the ring you know it’s going to be a heck of a fight.”
Freddie Roach: “From day one Manny told me this would not be an easy fight and he’s been training his ass off from then until now. We know we’re in for a tough fight.”
Manny Pacquiao: “You heard I trained hard for this fight. You know why? Because Mosley is a good fighter. You think he’s old? He’s not old. He moves like he’s 31-years-old. He has handspeed, foot speed and he knocked Margarito out. I fought Margarito and we went twelve rounds. He has an advantage there.
“The biggest of my fight of my life is not in boxing. The biggest fight of my life is how to end poverty in my country.
“I’m so happy about this fight because there is no trash talking. This is a good example to the boxing fans and the children who idolize the fighters.”
Big time boxing returns to Liverpool’s Echo Arena on July 16th when WBO super featherweight champion Ricky Burns tops the bill in defense of his title. An opponent for Burns will be announced next week. For Burns it will be the third defense of the title he ripped away from Rocky Martinez in September and it will be his first time fighting outside of Scotland as a world champion. Promoter Frank Warren said, “Burns is one of only four world champions that Britain can boast of at the moment and the only one you can watch on these shores and he is every bit as exciting as Haye, Froch and Khan, all who are having their next fights abroad.”
In the co-feature, Commonwealth light heavyweight beltholder Tony Bellew aims to add the vacant British title in a rematch with Ovill McKenzie.
By Ron Jackson
Des Williams, the last surviving member of the outstanding 1948 SA Olympic boxing team, has died at the age of 83. Williams was living at the St Michaels Retirement Village in Weltevreden Park, near Johannesburg, until he passed away after a short illness. (more…)
Photo: Team Sauerland
IBF middleweight champion Sebastian Sylvester (34-3-1, 16 KOs) evoked the names of former IBF 160lb titlists Marvin Hagler, Roy Jones Jr., Bernard Hopkins, Jermain Taylor and Arthur Abraham at a press conference today in Neubrandenburg, Germany. “Hagler, Jones, Hopkins, Taylor, Abraham etc. – they are all illustrious names. And I am proud to be one of them. I think that a triumph on Saturday would take me another step further forwards. I want to show that I deserve to be among this group of names, and leave the ring victorious as the IBF Champion against Daniel Geale,” said the confident title holder. “Geale is strong, but he is not going to win in my living room, the Jahnsportforum,” added Sylvester.
IBF #1 rated Geale (24-1, 15 KOs) stated “My preparation went according to plan,” he said. “Of course I know that Sylvester is very accomplished, but I want to make my dream of being champion become reality.” (more…)
Over four years removed from their first clash, UFC® stars Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber are set to meet again – this time for the UFC bantamweight championship. Ultimate Fighting Championship® officials announced today that on Saturday, July 2 live from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Cruz will defend the UFC bantamweight title against his heated rival Faber in one of the most anticipated title bouts of the summer. The 26-year-old Cruz is out to avenge a 2007 featherweight title loss to “The California Kid” and now looks to settle the score in the highly-entertaining 135-pound division. (more…)
Story by Andreas Hale
Ever since it was announced that Manny Pacquiao would be taking on “Sugar” Shane Mosley, it was a foregone conclusion to many that boxing’s pound for pound king would smash the green-eyed 39-year-old to smithereens. But despite what anyone thinks about Shane Mosley, Manny Pacquiao and Freddie Roach aren’t taking the former three division world champion any lighter than . . . say . . . Floyd Mayweather Jr . . . Click here for more
By Ray Wheatley — World of Boxing
Australian middleweight Daniel Geale (24-1, 15 KOs) will challenge Sebastian Sylvester (34-3-1, 16 KOs) on Saturday for the IBF middleweight crown when they clash over twelve rounds at Jahnsportforum in Neubrandenburg, Germany. IBF supervisor is Aaron Kizer from Phoenix, Arizona who is also an IBF Board member. Referee is Randy Neumann from New Jersey. Judges are Berit Andreasen of Denmark, Steve Epstein from Connecticut and Marcus McDonell from London, England. Geale scored an impressive twelve round stoppage over former IBF 154 pound champion Roman Karmazin in October 2010 to become the IBF mandatory contender. Sebastian Sylvester was awarded a twelve round draw against Roman Karmazin in June 2010 to retain the championship.
Matchroom Sport haas announced that Carl ‘The Cobra’ Froch has signed a five-fight promotional deal. The WBC Super-Middleweight champion spoke with both Barry and Eddie Hearn earlier this month and the work starts straight away with Froch heading to the States to fight Glen Johnson on June 4 in the semi-final of the Super Six in Atlantic City. The 33 year-old Nottingham star has wowed fight fans with his stunning performances against Jean Pascal, Jermaine Taylor, Andre Dirrell and Arthur Abraham, and now he plans to become a household name after years of frustration in the shadows.
“I’m so excited to be working with Matchroom,” said Froch. “When you are fighting at your peak it’s about raising your profile and securing TV time and that’s where I am. When you sit down with Barry and Eddie, you can tell they have the power and the resources to maximise your potential so I’m really excited about the rest of my career. (more…)
Photos: Fantasy Springs Resort Casino
Three-time world title challenger Librado Andrade, top contender Enrique Ornelas and unbeaten local prospect Randy Caballero worked out for the media on Tuesday at the Coachella Boxing Club as they prepare for their upcoming bouts on Friday’s TeleFutura-televised card at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif. Andrade (29-3, 22 KOs) faces Aaron Pryor, Jr. (15-3, 11 KOs) in a ten round light heavyweight main event while younger brother Ornelas (30-7, 20 KOs) will take on Hector Hernandez (10-3-2, 4 KOs) in the eight round light heavyweight co-feature. (more…)
48-year-old former heavyweight champion Evander Holyfield (43-10-2, 28 KOs) is in Copenhagen, Denmark for Saturday’s clash with 46-year-old Brian Nielsen (64-2, 43 KOs), who is returning to the ring after a nine year retirement.
“I’m full of respect for Brian Nielsen. He looks strong-willed, and his form is quite obviously improved since I saw him in December for the first time,” Holyfield wrote in the Ekstra Bladet. “With that said, he’ll have problems when we first meet up between the ropes. It’s me who is ‘The Real Deal,’ and I’m here in this country with a mission to be completed Saturday night. The mission is very simple: I will defeat Nielsen fair and square.” (more…)
Photo: Sauerland Event
Defending IBF middleweight champion Sebastian Sylvester and challenger Daniel Geale worked out for the public on Tuesday at the Bethanien Center in advance of Saturday’s world title clash clash at the Jahnsportforum in Neubrandenburg, Germany.
Geale hit the pads of trainer Graham Shaw for two rounds with rapid fire punches and vowed that he would “take the title.” Sylvester did a few rounds of padwork with trainer Karsten Roewer followed by three rounds of shadow boxing to the rhythmic clapping of his fans. When asked what the audience would see, Sylvester replied “A victory. I have prepared myself well and with the support of the fans I want to have a great fight against Geale.”
In other fights, light heavyweight Eduard Gutknecht meets Danny McIntosh, light heavyweight Karo Murat faces Otis Griffin, cruiserweight Enad Licina returns against Michele De Meo and heavyweight Edmund Gerber goes against Carl Baker.
Hall of Fame trainer Emanuel Steward is hard at work at the Kronk Gym in Detroit with his new client, former WBC light heavyweight champion “Bad” Chad Dawson (29-1, 17 KO’s), for Dawson’s upcoming 12-round match-up against Romanian/Canadian light heavyweight contender Adrian Diaconu (27-2, 15 KO’s). The two will meet on the undercard of the May 21 “Dynasty II: Pascal vs. Hopkins” rematch at the Bell Centre in Montreal, Quebec, Canada, and it will be more than a non-title clash of top 175-lb contenders for Dawson. If he wins, Dawson will face the winner of the Pascal and Hopkins in an effort to regain the belt.
Steward, known for his ability to analyze fighters and formulate winning fight plans, says he sees why Dawson is a champion and is currently working to change some technical errors in the style of the 6′ 1″ southpaw. “He’s unbelievable; phenomenal balance. He goes in and out and changes directions very, very well. He’s a terrific positional fighter. A lot of guys are always out of position, but Chad is sensational at getting in the right position to punch. He’s a natural athlete with a track background. A lot of boxers are that way, very gifted athletes.” (more…)
By Graham Houston
The smaller weight classes continued to provide the best fights with a thrilling Mexican civil war on Saturday night that saw the younger, stronger Adrian Hernandez overwhelm Gilberto Keb Baas in 10 rounds to capture the WBC light-flyweight title.
Keb Baas is a remarkable fighter, who despite having suffered 20 losses turned his career around, winning the 108-pound title with an upset victory over Omar Nino Romero. One of Keb Baas’s losses was to Hernandez — a fourth-round stoppage defeat three years ago when Keb Baas’s career was in a slump. The rematch was a different story, a classic contest between a boxer and a fighter. (more…)
Photos: Chris Farina/Top Rank
They started hovering around the make-shift ring in the lobby and the front entrance at MGM Grand an hour before the first of the custom-designed buses were scheduled to arrive. First, a little after 11 a.m., came the Shane Mosley bus. Then, at a tad after 1, the bus carrying Manny Pacquiao and his team rolled onto the property. By the time Pacquiao stepped inside the MGM, several hundred vocal, animated fans, most carrying cameras and chanting his name, and media, including dozens of TV crews, had jammed into the area.
This Saturday, May 7, at the sold-out MGM Grand Garden Arena, eight-division world champion Pacquiao (52-3-2, 38 KOs), of General Santos City, Philippines, will defend his WBO welterweight title against three-division world champion Mosley (46-6-1, 39 KOs), of Pomona, Calif., in the main event of a four-fight telecast produced and distributed live by SHOWTIME PPV® beginning at 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT. The eagerly awaited event also will be available online at www.toprank.tv, www.sports.SHO.com, www.cbs.com and www.sports.yahoo.com. (more…)
Tickets On Sale This Week For UFC 132 Cruz vs Faber 2 In Vegas: Dominick Cruz and Urijah Faber go head-to-head once again, this time for the UFC bantamweight title – plus, Tito Ortiz returns to take on Ultimate Fighter winner Ryan Bader – Saturday, July 2 live at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas – UFC Fight Club Presale starts Thursday at 10am PT Tickets>
On June 18, WBC super welterweight champion Saul Canelo Alvarez will return home to the Arena Vicente Fernandez Gomez (VFG) in Guadalajara Jalisco, Mexico to defend his crown for the first time against top available contender Ryan Rhodes of England. The co-feature will be a showdown of two of the top young junior lightweights in the world, when unbeaten Adrien “The Problem” Broner battles Jason Litzau. HBO will televise.
Photo and report by Ricardo Conde
Two-division world champion Sergio ‘Maravilla’ Martinez (47-2-2, 26 KOs) of Oxnard, California, by way of Argentina has confirmed that he will be in attendance for the Manny Pacquiao-Shane Mosley fight that takes place this Saturday, May 7th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Nevada. Before the Pacquiao-Mosley fight, Martinez will be at the MGM Grand on Friday May 6th to attend the 86th annual awards banquet of the Boxing Writers Association of America, which is honoring the outstanding boxers and boxing journalism of 2010, to receive the 2010 “Fighter of the Year” award which will be hosted by SHOWTIME broadcaster Al Bernstein. (more…)
Sources confirmed that discussions have been made to have IBF welterweight Jan Zaveck (31-1, 18 KOs) defend his title against former WBC weltweight champion Andre Berto (27-1, 21 KOs). No site or exact date has been decided though July or August could be a possibility.
Photo: Manny Pacquiao surveys a mob of supporters at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas at today’s Grand Arrivals. Though clearly outnumbered by Paquiao fans, “Sugar” Shane Mosley made his arrival to cheers around 12:30 while Pacquaio’s tour bus pulled up around 1 p.m.
The WBO announced today the officials who will work this Saturday, May 7th, in Las vegas for the title defenses of Manny Pacquiao and Wilfredo Vazquez Jr.
WBO president Francisco “Paco” Valcarcel reported that for the Pacquiao (52-3-2, 38 KOs) WBO Welterweight Champion, against Sugar Shane Mosley (46-6-1, 39 KOs) fight, the third man in the ring will be Kenny Bayless, from Nevada. The judges are Duane Ford, Dave Moretti and Glenn Trowbridge, all three from Nevada. WBO Supervisor will be Leon Panoncillo Jr.
For the WBO 122lb Title match between champion Vázquez Jr. (20-0-1, 17 KOs) and former three time champion Jorge “Travieso” Arce (56-6-2, 43 KOs), referee will be Joe Cortez, and judges, Nevada’s Robert Hoyle and Burt Clements, and from Indiana, Gary Merritt. WBO Supervisor for this bout is Luis Pérez, Chairman of Ratings Comittee.
Valcarcel and Pérez will travel tomorrow to Las Vegas to attend the card.
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