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Rashad Evans was in Colorado, just another fan checking out the fights as UFC 107 aired from Memphis, Tennessee. But with each passing bout, the realization hit home that this was one night that should have belonged to the former light heavyweight champion. . . . Click here for more by Thomas Gerbasi, UFC.com
By Joe Koizumi
WBA super-feather champ Juan Carlos Salgado (22-0-1, 16 KOs) arrived in Tokyo, Japan today (Saturday) prior to his initial defense with also unbeaten Japanese Takashi Uchiyama (13-0, 10 KOs) on January 11 (our national holiday of Coming-of-Age Day; the second Monday of January). Having astoundingly upset and dethroned previously unbeaten Jorge Linares, a Japan-based Venezuelan, via first-round TKO on October 10, the 25-year-old tall and lanky Mexican came back to defend his newly acquired belt at the Tokyo Big Site. This reporter served as interpreter on behalf of our press people who sacrificed the New Year holidays, and the interview to Salgado, the modest-speaking young man, was as follows: (more…)
The mother of Jack Loew – the lifelong trainer of middleweight champion of Kelly Pavlik – passed away Thursday. FightNews extends our sincerest thoughts and prayers to the Loew family for their loss.
FightNews wishes to belatedly congratulate 8 Count promoter Dominic Pesoli and his wife Tina on the birth of their first child, Dominic Vito. Little Dominic entered the ring on December 20th weighing 7 pounds, 3 ounces and with a height of 22 inches *(reach not available).
Also, another overdue congratulations to FightNews photographer Laura De la Torre and FightNews feature writer Andreas Hale for walking down the aisle of matrimony. Laura was married December 5th to boxing writer Ramon Aranda and Andreas tied the knot December 12th with Chenelle Jackson.
The father of Mauro Betti, chairman of the WBC International Championships committee and Italian Olympic officer, passed away on New Years Day in Italy. Condolences to Mauro and his family.
By Robert Coster
4 World Champions: Guillermo Jones (WBA cruiserweight), Celestino Caballero (WBA/IBF jr featherweight), Anselmo Moreno (WBA bantamweight), Luis Concepcion( WBA interim flyweight)
High Points: Anselmo Moreno makes four title defenses, Luis Concepcion becomes Panama’s 29th world champion. Inauguration of the Roberto Duran Arena.
Low Points: Ricardo Cordoba loses WBA jr featherweight title in Ireland, four Panamanian boxers lose in title bids
Shows by Promoters: 24, Premium Boxing Promotions (9), Promociones y Eventos del Istmo (8), Promotora Aristides Arauz (3), Conejo-Mena Producciones (3), Panama Productions (1)
Prospects: Ricardo Nunez 17-1, Luis Rios 11-0, Antonio Fernandez 10-1, Alberto Mosquera 10-0, Mercedes Concepcion 10-0, Azael Casio 8-0-2NC from Panama while foreigners are Pablo Vasquez (Venezuela) 18-0, Nicholas Walters (Jamaica) 13-0, Evens Pierre 12-0 (Haiti), Luca Giacon (Spain) 8-0.
What to look for in 2010: Anselmo Moreno ( full champion) vs Nehomar Cermeno (interim champion) in a super-showdown for the WBA bantamweight title; Ricardo Cordoba challenging for the WBA jr featherweight title; a possible title challenge by super flyweight Ricardo Nunez. Also keep a watch for 19-year-old strawweight Luis Rios, already ranked 6th in the WBA.
Weights by Andreas Hale
From the MGM Grand in Las Vegas:
Thiago Silva 205 vs. Rashad Evans 205
Paul Daley 172 vs. Dustin Hazelett 168
Sam Stout 155 vs. Joe Lauzon 155
Jim Miller 155 vs Duane Ludwig 156
Gilbert Yvel 239 vs Junior Dos Santos 237
Jacob Volkmann 171 vs Martin Kampmann 171
Dan Lauzon 155 vs Cole Miller 155
Ryan Jensen 186 vs Mark Munoz 185
Jake Ellenberger 170 vs Mike Pyle 171
Rafaello Oliveira 156 VS John Gunderson 155
By Joe Koizumi
In accordance with statistics of the Japan Boxing Commission (JBC), there happened 260 promotions here in Japan in the previous year. The number decreased in comparison with 276 in 2008, but we still saw some five shows a week on average somewhere (Tokyo, Osaka, Nagoya, Fukuoka, etc.) in Japan. The total bouts of last year amounted to 2,082, which also decreased from 2,245 in 2008. But it may be a good number in a single country. Out of the 260 promotions, we saw 149 shows in Tokyo district, 129 of which took place at the Korakuen Hall, the Mecca of boxing here. Strange enough, despite the general decrease, the promotions at the Hall were three more than 126 in 2008. We witnessed 1,215 games at the Hall, including preliminary bouts, throughout the year, 148 bouts more than 1,067 there in 2008. Licensed by the JBC were 2,670 professional boxers, which were almost same as 2,669 in 2008. Out of them, 2,503 fighters belonged to Japanese boxing gyms, while 167 were foreign visitors fighting here.
Why can Japan present so many promotions still under recession? It may be chiefly because our promoters pay purses in the form of tickets to domestic boxers (not to foreigners) with boxers and their managers having to endeavor to distribute tickets in order to exchange them into money. This reporter once criticized this traditional way of ticket-distribution under the club system where the managers can be the promoters of their own star boxers. Under the worldwide recession, however, it might be a way for the boxing world to survive. (more…)
The California State Athletic Commission (CSAC) has announced that it’s finding it increasingly difficult to comply with its mandate to ensure all professional boxers are cleared (not suspended in California or other states) before being allowed to compete. The CSAC believes that a major factor in suspended boxers fighting is the practice of allowing bouts to move forward anticipating promoters will provide the necessary clearance for the athletes before or at the scheduled weigh in. In order to address this problem, the CSAC is instituting a number of measures including discontinuing this accommodation. Therefore, effective January 1, 2010 the CSAC will not allow a proposed bout to move forward if the promoter has not provided Athletic Commission staff clearance for a boxer from FightFax at least 48 hours prior to the scheduled weigh in time. The clearance required includes, but is not limited to, medical restrictions, suspensions, etc. No exceptions will be allowed as the law requires that all fighters be properly licensed and cleared prior to competing.
Exciting UFC lightweight contender Joe “J-Lau” Lauzon (18-4, 5 [T]KOs, 13 submissions), only 10 months after undergoing knee surgery to repair his ACL, enters the Octagon once again Saturday night to fight Canadian veteran Sam “Hands of Stone” Stout (14-5-1, 8 [T]KOs, 1 submission) on the UFC 108 pay-per-view show, live from MGM Grand in Las Vegas. (more…)
Story by Socrates Bustamante
Photos by Marty Rosengarten/Ringside Photos.com
At the end of the holiday season and on the first day of the New Year, it’s nice to reflect on the good guys in sports who go out of their way to help those in need. One of them is boxing trainer and ESPN2 Friday Night Fights analyst Teddy Atlas.
Always fighting the good fight in his undying efforts to improve the quality of life for those in need, he remembers his Good Samaritan father, and each year he enlists the support of sports and entertainment celebrities to attend the annual Dr. Theodore A. Atlas Foundation Dinner (affectionately nicknamed the “Teddy Dinner” by boxing scribes) . . . click here for more
Watch the UFC 108 weigh-in live today, from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas. Doors open at 3 p.m. and fighters hit the scale at 4 p.m. A Fight Club Q&A session hosted by Wanderlai Silva will precede the weigh-in at 2 p.m.
Online, the weigh-in can be viewed on UFC.com at 7 PM ET/4 PM PT.
BoxingInLasVegas.com is reporting that Jim Martin – husband, trainer and manager of female boxing legend Christy Martin – underwent open heart surgery after being rushed earlier this week to the hospital due to chest pains. You can send your well-wishes to Jim and Christy at the Florida Hospital located at South 601 East Rollins Street in Orlando, FL 32803. FightNews extends our thoughts and prayers to Jim.
Final presser report by Andreas Hale
Since 2006, the UFC has put on extraordinary shows to ring in the new year. Chuck Liddell and Tito Ortiz rang in 2007 with their rematch at UFC 66, 2008 was greeted with Georges St. Pierre and Matt Hughes having their rubber match while Chuck Liddell battled Wanderlei Silva at UFC 79 and 2009 saw a dynamic card that was topped off with Rashad Evans taking on Forrest Griffin at UFC 92. . . . Click here for more
Today Dutch promoter Henk Ruhling passes away at the age of 89. Henk has been very important for Dutch boxing both as a promoter and boxing manager. Boxers like Rudy Koopmans, Rudi Lubbers, Alex Blanchard and Nordin Ben Salah boxed big matches under the inspiring leadership of Ruhling. In the seventies he brought Rudi Lubbers into the ring against Muhammad Ali.
Featherweight Jose Miguel Cotto (31-1, 23 KOs), lightweight Juan Gonzalez (5-0, 5 KOs), lightweight Abner Cotto (6-0, 4 KOs) and featherweight Jayson Velez (11-0, 9 KOs) will be available to sign autographs and take photos with their fans this Saturday (January 2nd) at select Sears and Kmart locations across the island. Everlast and Promociones Miguel Cotto will host the “Meet & Greet” events from 1:00 to 3:00 pm at the following locations:
Juan Gonzalez will appear at Sears in Mayaguez, PR
Jose Miguel Cotto will appear at Sears in San Juan, PR
Abner Cotto will appear at Sears in Bayamon, PR
Jayson Velez will appear at Kmart in San Juan, PR
Maybe it’s because he’s not a flamboyant fighter who reverts to smack talk to earn himself press or maybe it’s because he hasn’t been christened with a sinister sounding nickname like Pitbull or The Axe Murderer; whatever the reason might be, Jake Ellenberger is sick of being a mixed martial artist on the cusp of being a household name. If everything goes according to his plans, all of that will soon change and the 24-year-old Nebraska native will go from fighter on the fringe to fighter in the title contention fray of the UFC’s welterweight class in 2010 . . . Click here for more by Mike Russell, UFC.com
Very little has been heard about a proposed January 16 fight in Kampala, Uganda between WBF heavyweight beltholder Frans Botha and former world champion Evander Holyfield since the initial announcement of the fight on November 23. Numerous news sources are reporting today that the fight is on, although today’s published quotes are all old news from the original press release. The Kampala Daily Monitor does have some new information today, however. Promoter Eddie Bazira is quoted as saying that he was “positive that a big fight is in the offing,” while admitting that it’s not a done deal. “We have a big company coming on board and shall only start marketing the fight after the finalizing negotiations with them next Tuesday,” he said. According to Bazira, both Botha and Holyfield have signed contracts and can’t wait to come to Kampala.
By Gabriel F. Cordero
Word is that a possibility exists that WBC super featherweight champion Humberto Soto will fight former lightweight world champion David Díaz on the big March card headlined by Manny Pacquiao against TBA in Las Vegas. Soto would again be campaigning at lightweight after beating Jesus Chavez in his most recent fight, but he doesn’t plan to give up his WBC 130lb belt.
WBC interim super featherweight champion Vitali Tajbert has been charged with assault by Stuttgart police for allegedly punching a man after being provoked outside a Stuttgart disco on Sunday night. The victim was admitted to the hospital in critical condition with a cerebral hemorrhage but is now improving. Tajbert’s promoter Universum Box-Promotion has issued the following statement:
“Universum will not comment on the ongoing proceedings out of respect for the work of the investigating authorities. For those who have injured Vitali Tajbert, the presumption of innocence also applies. Universum has full confidence in the work of the investigators and hopes that any injuries, no matter who suffered it or what role the person played in the incident, will heal without consequences. For reasons stated above, it is asked to momentarily refrain from further inquiries.”
* Rashad Evans and Thiago Silva meet in a key light heavyweight matchup this Saturday night – UFC® 108 Presented by Bayonetta – Live On Pay-Per-View, Yahoo! Sports and UFC.com
* Martin Kampmann and Jacob Volkmann go head-to-head, plus Cole Miller faces Dan Lauzon in the Octagon® – UFC® 108 The Prelims – Live at 9pm ET / 6pm PT on SPIKE
* Watch the UFC® 108 Weigh-In live this Friday at 7pm ET / 4pm PT on UFC.com
* UFC.com – Countdown to UFC® 108
Fresh from a two minute, five second victory over Ryan Roberts on December 4th in his hometown of Denver, Colorado, Duane Ludwig was settling in for the holidays and winding down with his family in a local shopping mall a few weeks ago, and like many of us, he was getting his 2010 to do list together . . . Click here for more by Thomas Gerbasi, UFC.com
A big year for Universum’s hot jr middleweight prospect Jack Culcay is over. “There were three highlights”, he said. “I won the world [amateur] championship, then signed my professional contract with Universum and had my first professional fight in December…that was certainly the most exciting year of my life.” Culcay is the first German to win an amateur boxing championship in 14 years. Five or six fights are planned for 2010, with the first set to take place on January 9 in Magdeburg. Therefore, there will only be a small celebration with friends for New Year. In Hamburg, where he works with trainer Michael Timm, Culcay will take a brief break from sparring. “At the beginning of next week we’re ready to go to Magdeburg,” he added. In 2010 the media interest will remain high. The first TV dates are being planned.
By Craig Watt
Former two time WBA super-middleweight and IBO middleweight champion Anthony “The Man” Mundine (37-3, 23 KOs) is having a sparse Xmas in Australia this year as he prepares to drop to Jr-middleweight and take on Rob Medley (27-2, 17 KOs) for the vacant IBO 154 pound title at the Sydney Entertainment Centre on January 11th. In boxing history it is well recognised that fighters tend to move up in weight as they get older, mainly as a consequence of a slowing metabolism but the 34 year old from Sydney is attempting to do the opposite by moving down in weight having won versions of the world title at 168, 160 and now 154 pounds. Very few fighters in history have achieved this feat and the fight with Medley is seen by many boxing experts in Australia as a potential hazard to open the year for the most controversial of Aussie boxers. Already a non-smoker and a non-drinker Mundine, known as “Choc” for his daily intake of chocolate bars has cut out his favourite vice for his final two weeks of training. He stated, “I had my last bar this morning before training but that has gone now. It’s now strictly water and food like lettuce and chicken.” (more…)
Promoter Bob Arum is preparing to open negotiations for Manny Pacquiao to move up to 154 to face WBA super welterweight champion Yuri Foreman. Ex-IBF 140lb champ Paulie Malignaggi is also in the mix. Arum told the LA Times, “…I don’t see [Pacquiao-Mayweather] happening now. Positions are hardening. I talked to [Pacquiao’s advisor], and Manny’s fit to be tied. He’s very angry.”
Daniel M. Petrocelli, the lawyer representing Manny Pacquiao in his lawsuit against the Mayweathers and Golden Boy execs, is best known for representing Fred Goldman in the famous wrongful death civil suit against O.J. Simpson. The Goldman family won a judgment of $8.5 million dollars.
Looks like negotiations between representatives of Bernard Hopkins and Danny Green have collapsed due to a disagreement over the purse split.
On Wednesday Manny Pacquiao filed a lawsuit in Nevada federal court against Floyd Mayweather, Jr., Floyd Mayweather, Sr., Roger Mayweather, Mayweather Promotions, LLC, and Golden Boy Promotions executives Oscar de la Hoya, and Richard Schaefer for allegedly making false and defamatory statements accusing Pacquiao of taking performance-enhancing drugs. The lawsuit claims the Mayweathers, de la Hoya, and Schaefer knew that Pacquiao has never taken performance-enhancing drugs, knew their statements were false, but made them anyway out of “ill-will, spite, malice, revenge, and envy.” Pacquiao has retained Daniel Petrocelli of the Los Angeles-based law firm of O’Melveny & Myers LLP. About the filing of the complaint, Petrocelli stated: “Manny Pacquiao’s achievements come from God-given talent and an indefatigable work ethic — not steroids. He cannot and will not allow others to deliberately misrepresent his years of hard work and tarnish his reputation.” The lawsuit was filed in federal district court in Las Vegas, Nevada, and seeks compensatory and punitive damages for defendants’ wrongful conduct. Click here to see a PDF file of the actual complaint.
WBO light middleweight champion Sergiy Dzinziruk and former WBA bantamweight champion Wladimir Sidorenko recently visited Las Vegas. In addition to meeting Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum at Top Rank headquarters, the pair hooked up with former world champions Sam Peter and Fernando Vargas. Click here for more photos…
Preview by Brady Crytzer
Despite being plagued with injuries, UFC 108 remains firm in its offering of a world class showdown in the sport’s most glamorous division. Two of the best light heavyweights in the sport will finally meet in Las Vegas as former world champion “Sugar” Rashad Evans trades barbs with KO puncher Thiago Silva in Saturday night’s main event. Both men have emerged from their respective grappling backgrounds to become some of the most dangerous strikers in the sport, and though the tale of the tape is even across the board, speed will be the determining factor on January 2nd. Who will be victorious Saturday night and move one step closer to the world light heavyweight title? Let’s look further into the main event of UFC 108 . . . Click here for more
WBA middleweight world champion Felix Sturm has signed a ten fight deal with Ufa Sports according to BILD. The pact will cover ten fights over the next three to four years and be worth $20 million Euros. The first fight is scheduled for Spring 2010. Univerum Box-Promotion, however, maintains that it has options on Sturm until 2012 so a legal battle will likely occur before Sturm can return to the ring.
Everlast and Promociones Miguel Cotto will host four Meet & Greet events on Saturday, January 2nd featuring several of Puerto Rico’s best boxers at select Sears and Kmart locations across the island. The boxers will include featherweight Jose Miguel Cotto (31-1, 23 KOs), lightweight Juan Gonzalez (5-0, 5 KOs), lightweight Abner Cotto (6-0, 4 KOs) and featherweight Jayson Velez (11-0, 9 KOs). All of the fighters will be available to sign autographs and take pictures with their fans. The Meet & Greet will also be a festivity for The Three Kings Day, a traditional holiday of gift-giving celebrated in Puerto Rico. The Meet & Greet will take place from 1:00 to 3:00 pm at the following Sears and Kmart locations:
* Juan Gonzalez will appear at Sears in Mayaguez, PR
* Jose Miguel Cotto will appear at Sears in San Juan, PR
* Abner Cotto will appear at Sears in Bayamon, PR
* Jayson Velez will appear at Kmart in San Juan, PR
Believe it or not, the transition from computer wiz to MMA fighter isn’t that much of a stretch. Listen to Joe Lauzon elaborate on his former role, and he may as well be talking about the latter . . . Click here for more by Debbie Lee, UFC
Jimenez Communications and Comunicaciones Soto have put on a year-end review book of Promociones Zanfer’s great year in boxing. Fernando Beltran, President of Promociones Zanfer commission the two editorial companies to put together a coffee table book to chronicle the great year his boxing company had in 2009. Partnered with Top Rank Inc., Zanfer was once again the premier boxing company in Mexico and the 180 page book illustrates their success. Click here.
Former IBF junior middleweight champion Roman “Made in Hell” Karmazin (39-3-1, 25 KOs) found the perfect sparring partner for his January 8th IBF title eliminator against Columbian Dionicio “Mr. Knockout” Miranda (20-4-2, 18 KOs) by sparring with none other than former world title challenger Edison “Pantera” Miranda (33-4, 29 KOs). Karmazin and the ‘other’ Miranda went six hard rounds a few days before Christmas and had planned to continue sparring but Miranda called in sick for the next sparring session. Karmazin discovered Tuesday that (Edison) Miranda had withdrawn from his January 9th title shot against WBO super middleweight champion Robert Stieglitz due to illness. “It was great sparring with Edison,” commented Karmazin. “It is too bad he got sick but those couple of rounds will help me for my fight against the other Miranda.” (more…)
By Nick Giongco
A urine sample of Manny Pacquiao is on its way to Manila, World Anti-Doping Agency (Wada) accredited doctor Alex Pineda told Fightnews and Manila Bulletin on Wednesday afternoon. Pineda, who also works for the Philippine Olympic Committee, personally witnessed the initial phase of testing at Pacquiao’s residence in General Santos City. Pineda arrived in General Santos City at around lunchtime, headed to Pacquiao’s palatial home where he got the sample, then was driven back to the airport so he could catch the plane bound for Manila. (more…)
By Ricardo Conde
WBO featherweight champion Steven Luevano (37-1-1, 15 KOs) of La Puente, CA, trained by former junior lightweight champion Robert Garcia at the La Colonia Boxing Gym in Oxnard, CA, will be on taking on current WBO junior featherweight champion Juan Manuel “Juanma” Lopez (27-0, 24 KOs) of Puerto Rico on January 23rd at Madison Square Garden in New York, NY, which will be shown live on HBO and is being promoted by Top Rank, in association with Arena Boxing U.S. and PR Best Boxing. Luevano’s last title defense was against Bernabe Concepcion back in August in a bout which Luevano was dominating when Concepcion hit Luevano after the bell to end round 7 and resulted in a win by disqualification for Luevano. In the co-main event, unbeaten WBA featherweight champion Yuriorkis Gamboa (16-0, 14 KOs) defends his title against Rogers Mtagwa (26-13-2, 18 KOs). Tickets are on sale at www.ticketmaster.com, all Ticketmaster outlets, at the Madison Square Garden box office, at www.thegarden.com and are priced at $200, $100, $75 and $50 For more details and photos click here…
It has been erroneously reported that Manny Pacquiao had his blood test, required for a Nevada boxing license, taken two weeks before his fight against Ricky Hatton. The truth is “24/7 Pacquiao-Hatton” TAPED Manny’s blood test 24 days before the fight and aired it closer to the fight. To see a copy of Pacquiao’s blood test dated April 8 (the fight was May 2), click here…
By Craig Watt
After ten weeks on the Fox 8 channel every Monday evening The Australian Contender series now enters the final stages of the tournament with the semi-final line up now complete for a double-header feature episode on the 4th January. In an interesting variation on the series here in Australia the winner of the tournament will face off with former two time WBA super-middleweight and former IBO middleweight champion Anthony “The Man” Mundine in 2010 for a guaranteed purse of $250,000. The final of the tournament will be held as the chief supporting bout at the Sydney Entertainment Centre on January 11th when Mundine challenges for the IBO junior-middleweight title against fellow Australian Rob Medley. It will be a PPV event on Main Events throughout Australia. (more…)
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