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By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
While the result of last Saturday’s middleweight battle between David Lemieux and Joachim Alcine may be open to some debate, one clear winner on the night was promoter Yvon Michel who got himself 50% of a top-ten fighter. Michel battled with Alcine during fight-week about their past relationship, but ended up with half of the fighter from Lou DiBella by virtue of the former world champ’s surprising win versus Alcine. Winning the WBC International belt put Alcine at #10 at middleweight and now very much in play within the division, even though he professed of a clear preference to return to 154 pounds. “I have fifty percent but Lou DiBella is the lead promoter so I’m going to follow whatever Lou might bring as a proposal,” said Michel when asked about his “newest” fighter. “What really interests me is to have an eventual rematch between Lemieux and Alcine,” said Michel. “I’d like to see what the eventual options are for Alcine, and to see him moving forward,” the promoter told Fightnews, mentioning DiBella is also promoter of Sergio Martinez and that with Alcine now in the top ten, that fight was now a possibility. “He should have an opportunity to fight a prestigious fight like that, so I hope Lou moves in that direction.”
By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
With the ordered rematch between Bernard Hopkins and Chad Dawson, former WBC light-heavyweight Jean Pascal finds himself as the odd man out in a triangle that has seen all three fighters wearing the green belt at one time or another. With Pascal (26-2-1 16KO) forced to take a backseat, the #3 ranked fighter in the division was ordered to face off against #2 ranked Ismayl Sillakh (17-0 14KO) for spot of mandatory challenger within the division by the WBC. Don’t look for the fight to happen anytime soon though as Pascal’s promoter will continue exploring more viable and lucrative options. (more…)
Tijuana featherweight Omar “Dinamita” Estrella (15-3-2, 10KOs) has a big opportunity in his near future when on Saturday, January 21st, he is scheduled to face the former world champion Daniel Ponce de Leon (41-4, 34KOs) in Mexico City at a venue to be determined. The ten round bout will be presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Erik Morales’ Box Latino. The main event will be televised live in Mexico by Televisa. (more…)
By Francisco Salazar
Photo: Phil McCarty/Hogan Photos
Most boxing experts and fight fans predicted an Andre Berto victory over Victor Ortiz prior to both fighters facing each other back in April. However, few would have predicted what transpired inside the ring for 12 brutal rounds that saw a total of four knockdowns, Berto’s ‘O’ disappearing on his record, and Ortiz finally living up to expectations from his days as an amateur. Not to mention the fight turned out to be one of if not the fight of the year for 2011.
Both fighters will fight once again on February 11th at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas, NV. Rather than most favoring Ortiz to win the rematch, as most are accustomed to doing, there are a majority that are favoring Berto to defeat the 24-year-old. “Once again, I have to prove myself,” said Ortiz, at Monday’s press conference to officially announce the anticipated fight at the JW Marriott in downtown Los Angeles. (more…)
By Karl Freitag
Jon Miller President of Programming and NBC Sports and NBC Sports Network, Main Events promoter Kathy Duva and Hall of Fame matchmaker Russell Peltz today discussed the launch of the new NBC Sports Network “Fight Night” series which debuts January 21 in Philadelphia with a matchup between Philly heavyweight contender “Fast” Eddie Chambers and former WBO heavyweight champion Sergei “White Wolf” Liakhovich.
Jon Miller: We’re excited to get our team back involved with boxing again. It had a long and storied history with NBC Sports. Back in the early nineties, we would do as many as 20 or 30 fights per year on NBC and we think there is an opportunity here with the right matchmaking and the right positioning to possibly reintroduce boxing to free over-the-air and, in this case, cable television.
Kathy Duva: The fighter’s purses for this show are going to exceed the rights fee. It’s not like we’re holding back….our goal here is to make great fights so NBC is going to want to do more of them.
Russell Peltz: I’m especially happy that the series is opening up in Philadelphia, which is still one of the best fight towns in the country and also the fact that we’re not in a casino ballroom, we’re in a live arena and we’ve got a Philadelphia fighter in each of the two main fights in a 50/50 matchup.
The NBC Sports Network (currently named VERSUS) is also planning boxing shows for March 24, June 16 and December 8.
By Dave Spencer / Fightnews Canada
While Antonin Decarie and Victor Lupo were settling matters inside the ring Saturday night for the WBC International welterweight belt, former belt holder Phil Lo Greco was busy making videos and challenges to the winner promising to “f*** them up” sometime in 2012.
After having a signed contract with the Toronto fighter last September, include Decarie amongst those not interested in going down the same road again. “Before negotiations happened with Lo Greco and Lupo, I was supposed to have fought Lo Greco, the fight was signed and he backed out.” (more…)
Germany’s first major boxing highlight of 2012 takes place on January 14 at the Baden Arena in Offenburg when former middleweight champion Arthur Abraham (32-3, 26 KOs) takes on Pablo Oscar Natalio Farias (19-1, 11 KOs) and WBO super middleweight world champion Robert Stieglitz (40-2, 23 KOs) defends against WBO #14 Henry Weber (15-0-1, 3 KOs). At a press conference on Monday in Magdeburg, Stieglitz and Weber, who will be training through the holidays, spoke to the press:
Robert Stieglitz: “One should not underestimate Henry Weber. Therefore, I am approaching the matter with the necessary concentration. I’ve been a professional long enough to know I can celebrate after the 14th of January.”
Trainer Dirk Dzemski: “Our goal is clear. We want to clearly defeat Weber, then in April go against Mikkel Kessler.”
Henry Weber: “I know Robert from previous sparring, so I know what to expect….I have become faster, more mobile and explosive since I’ve trained with Otto Ramin. Somehow he manages to get more out of me. In the world championship fight against Stieglitz, I’m still the underdog. But that doesn’t bother me because fights aren’t won by words, but in the ring.
Trainer Otto Ramin: “This will be an exciting fight. We’re not focusing on Robert Stieglitz, but on the strengths of Henry. While anything is possible in boxing, I’m assuming that the fight will go the rounds. We’ll see who will be the winner in the end.”
Nate Diaz and Donald Cerrone are two of the most exciting young fighters in the lightweight division.
Diaz is the younger brother (and virtual carbon copy) of former Strikeforce Welterweight Champion and UFC veteran Nick Diaz and he is looking to build upon the tremendous momentum created with his Submission of the Night win over former PRIDE superstar Takanomi Gomi. This will be Diaz’s second 155-lb bout after spending a little over a year competing at 170. And a win over Cerrone will put Diaz right back into the division’s top 10 . . . Click here for more by Michael DiSanto, UFC.com
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For more info on the UFC or UFC 141, visit www.UFC.com
By Gabriel F. Cordero
During the 49th annual WBC Convention was decided that middleweight champion Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. would have to next face former champion Sergio “Maravilla” Martinez, but there were already plans in place for Chavez to defend his belt on February 4 in Texas. A reliable source indicates that Top Rank has already sent the contract to Promociones del Pueblo, promoter of longtime mandatory challenger Marco Antonio Rubio. Promoter Oswaldo Kuchler says it’s his understanding that the winner of the bout between Chavez Jr. and Rubio must face Martinez. However, Martinez camp believes the WBC decision means they can go straight to Chavez without waiting.
Former “Contender” winner Grady Brewer (28-13, 16 KOs), the reigning NABF super middleweight beltholder, is hard at work preparing for his upcoming title fight this Thursday night at the Cox Center in Oklahoma City. Brewer, age 40 (turning 41 on Thursday), from Lawton, Oklahoma, is defending his title against the younger knockout artist Michael Medina (25-3, 19 KOs), from Monterry, Mexico. Brewer won the NABF light middleweight title on June 17, 2011 by TKO in the fourth round over another much younger fighter, undefeated Fernando Guerrero (21-0 at the time). This win by Brewer was a huge upset and knocked the world-wide boxing community for a loop. As far is Brewer is concerned, it was no upset as he is used to winning and knocking off young guys.
Also on the card is popular Oklahoma lightweight titlist Noah Zuhdi (15-2,14 KO’s), welterweight Kyle Sherman (10-2, 6 KO’s), and heavyweight Ron “The Iceman” Aubrey (11-2, 11 KO’s). Opponents will be named. The event is presented by catBOX Entertainment.
By Matt Richardson and Kurt Wolfheimer
Entering the championship rounds, Andre Ward had compiled a substantial lead on the scorecards of judges John Keene (99-91) and Craig Metcafe (97-93). However judge John Stewart saw the bout even at 95-95 through ten. Keane (118-110) split the last two rounds, while Metcafe (115-113) gave both rounds to Carl Froch and Stewart (115-113) gave both rounds to Ward. Click here to see the actual master scorecard.
By Ron Jackson
Doctor Ntsele from the Free State retained his South African flyweight title when he knocked out Mkholisi Bhonxa of Duncan Village in the third round at the Babs Madalakane Community Hall in Uitenhage on Sunday afternoon. Ntsele (49.85kg) who was making the second defence of his title was too strong for the Boxing SA number one ranked Bhonxa and dominated through rounds one and two before scoring the knockout in the third round.
Ntsele won the title in July this year when he outpointed Xola Sifama over twelve rounds and in his first defence he stopped Anele Makhwelo in the ninth round in Bloemfontein. Rather sadly Makwhelo collapsed after the fight and died in a Bloemfontein hospital four days later. Ntsele improves his record to 14-4-1, 9 KOs and Bhonxa’s reported record drops to 9-6-1, 3 KOs.
Photos & Video by Gabriel F. Cordero & Pepe Rodriguez
In a Fightnews.com exclusive, WBC President Jose Sulaiman delivers a special video message to boxing fans, boxers, managers, promoters and media around the world. Recorded at the 49th WBC Convention that ended this week, Sulaiman explains his projects and goals.
Shawn “The Sniper” Cox (15-1, 14 KOs) is calling out any of the world champions at cruiserweight after successfully defending his WBC CABOFE cruiserweight title at the Cliff Anderson sports hall in Georgetown, Guyana on Saturday night. “I told them I was great,” Cox said after knocking down the courageous Kurt Bess (5-5, 3 KOs) four times in the first round of the scheduled 12 round contest. “I was not 100% sure I could beat the best fighters in the world, but after knocking out former top ten Francisco Alvarez in Mexico and then sparring with heavyweight world champion Alexander Povetkin, I am 1000% sure that no one in the world can beat me at cruiserweight.” (more…)
Ringside Report: Matt Richardson
Photos: Ed Mulholland
Despite the ups and downs, replacements and cancellations Showtime’s “Super Six” super middleweight tournament produced two important things: some good, engaging fights and a future American star. The former was lacking on Saturday night at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey but the latter was clearly on display as WBA super middleweight champion Andre Ward unified his belt with the WBC’s with a clear unanimous decision win against title-holder Carl Froch. (More)
By Gary “Digital” Williams
Former Undisputed Cruiserweight champion O’Neil “Supernova” Bell broke a three-bout losing streak in short fashion, needing just 58 seconds to stop Rico Cason in the main event on December 17 at Henderson Hall’s Smith Gymnasium on the Fort Myer Joint Military Base in Arlington, VA. The card was promoted by RBA Promotions.
Bell, now fighting out of Arlington, dropped the native of Hermitage, TN twice with two crushing right hands, the second knockdown forced referee Billy Johnson to stop the contest. After losing his undisputed title to Jean-Marc Mormeck, Bell (27-4-1, 25 KO’s) lost to former champ Tomasz Adamek and former title challenger Richard Hall before this victory.
With the loss, Cason falls to 17-21, five KO’s. (more…)
By Matt Richardson
Photos: Ed Mulholland
Millions of dollars in the bank, four wins, two world championships and general recognition as fighter of the year for 2011. That’s what Andre Ward has earned by his performances in Showtime’s “Super Six” super middleweight round robin tournament that commenced in 2009.
Not too shabby for a fighter most experts predicted wouldn’t get past the first round or even first fight in the tournament without losing.
“This is not the end, it’s the beginning,” Ward (25-0, 13 KO’s) stated at the post-fight press conference held back stage at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey late Saturday night. Minutes earlier Ward unified the WBA and WBC super middleweight titles with a dominant 12-round unanimous decision against Carl Froch.
“Believe it or not, you haven’t seen the best of Andre Ward. I take my hat off to Carl Froch. I have nothing bad to say about him,” Ward said. “He didn’t stop trying, he kept coming and he was classy in defeat,” said Ward promoter Dan Goossen. “At worst, Andre lost two rounds.” (more…)
By Bill Hillmann at ringside
Photos: Armando Angulo
There was a down-pour during most of the bouts Saturday night which took place in a baseball field in Cozumel Mexico. The Donovan George, Librado Andrade bout was canceled due to contract-issues with the size of the ring. The other bouts continued.
Enrique Ornelas (38-7-0 21KOs) stops Luis Serrano (11-1 9KO’s) with a left hook to the body. Time of stoppage was 1:03 of the first round.
Alberto Esquivel of Cozumel (2-0 2KOs) stops Carlos Sanchez of Mexico (NA) with an uppercut/left hook at 0:27 sec of the second round.
Super Flyweight WBC Continental Americas champion Carlos Cuadras of Mexico City (23-0 20 KOs) defeated Alberto Chuc (14-18, 11KOs) of Yucatan. It was a competitive bout. Chuc won the second round but then Cuadras took over. He dropped Chuc in the 6th with a right hand. Chuc beat the count but Cuadras floored Chuc with another combination moments later. Chuc valiantly rose to his feet and continued to battle. Chuc’s corner threw in the towel at 1:52 of the sixth round. (more…)
Photos and story by Bob Ryder at ringside
Junior Welter Juan (Johnny) Garcia thrilled his local fans with a decisive stoppage win over Reggie Nash in the main event at DeVos Place in downtown Grand Rapids, MI. The undefeated Garcia from nearby Holland, MI, showed speed and power in dismantling Nash. After a relatively even first round, Garcia really went to work, setting a pace that Nash could not match. Body shots by Juan lowered Nash’s guard and he quickly began to switch his attack upstairs, bloodying Reggie’s mouth in the third round. In the fourth, Garcia landed a booming right that dropped Nash hard. Reggie got up and attempted to fight back but was quickly in trouble again with referee Patrick Schmidt administering another count as Nash floundered under Garcia’s attack along the ropes. Shortly after the mandatory eight was tolled, Garcia resumed wailing on Nash until Schmidt jumped in to stop it at 2:55 of the round. With the win Garcia goes to (11-0, 9 KO’s) while Nash drops to (10-28-1, 1 KO) in losing for the second time to Garcia. (more…)
By Joe Koizumi
Despite an abrupt cancellation of ex-WBC bantam and feather champ Hozumi Hasegawa’s comeback appearance because of his rib cage injury, a supporting card inevitably became a headliner on Saturday in Kobe, Japan. WBC#11 super-fly Johnny Garcia (14-3-1, 8 KOs), 114.5, defeated Japan’s #5 ranked 115-pounder Yoshito Ishizaki (6-3-1, 4 KOs), 114.75, Hasegawa’s stablemate, by a unanimous decision (78-75 and 78-74 twice) over eight furious rounds on Saturday in Kobe, Japan. A week after Hasegawa having cancelled his engagement, great many customers reasonably had tickets refunded, so there was only a very sparse crowd due to a void of the hometown favorite in Kobe city. But the spectators were fortunate enough to watch such a grueling battle with each hitting the deck. Garcia, a hard-hitting swinger, floored the lanky speedster Ishizaki in the fourth, but the Japanese came back to take the initiative, piling up points to overcome the deficits. In round seven Ishizaki decked Garcia with a busy combination, but the Mexican displayed his heart and power by dropping him back in the closing seconds of the give-and-take round. Garcia, managed by ex-WBC ruler Jose Luis Bueno, was in command in the eighth and final session, so he could bring home the bacon to Mexico city. It was a very interesting see-saw affair. Promoter: Shinsei Promotions.
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