The Boxing Diary

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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Kevin Mitchell stops Daniel Estrada

[caption id="attachment_5092" align="alignnone" width="709"]Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images Dean Mouhtaropoulos/Getty Images[/caption]

Kevin Mitchell (39-2, 29 KO's) put on a master class performance tonight, at the O2 Arena (Millenium Dome), Greenwich, London, outclassing a very brave Daniel Estrada from the start, until the stoppage was called in the eighth round.

Mitchell was very calm and focus in executing his brilliant boxing and counter-punching techniques. His lead uppercuts finding home on Estrada's really bloody face. His head movement, footwork was too coordinated in evading Estrada's powerful punches. Mitchell let Estrada pay for every mistakes made, busting the visiting Mexican.

It seemed Estrada (32-4-1, 24 KO) did not win a round, who also visited the floor early in the third round from Mitchell's right hand. His feet squared up during the exchanges. And he was not able to withstand the impact when the right hand came in.

In the eight, the referee had seen enough, stopped the contest, and saved Estrada from more punishment. A right uppercut momentarily stunned Estrada that made the referee to step in. I think it was a brilliant stoppage right there as Estrada was in no position to defend himself.

With the win it seemed Mitchell is targeting for a showdown with WBC lightweight belt-holder Jorge Linares next.

Sullivan Barrera stops Jeff Lacy on FNF

Sullivan Barrera (15-0, 10 KO's) remain undefeated by stopping Jeff Lacy (27-6, 18 KO's) on Friday night at the Foxwoods Resort, Mashantucket, Connecticut on FNF.

Monday, January 26, 2015

Brandon Rios overwhelms Mike Alvarado

[caption id="attachment_5083" align="alignnone" width="725"]Photo: Chris Farina / Top Rank Photo: Chris Farina / Top Rank[/caption]

Brandon Rios overwhelmed and ultimately stopped rival Mike Alvarado, after round three of their third encounter at the 1stBank Center, Broomfield in Alvarado’s backyard in Colorado. The referee, with the advice of ringside physician stopped the contest after a brutal third round.

Rios (33-2-1, 24 KO's) was the same savage fighter who wants carnage inside the ring. He came out exactly the same warrior that he is in the first two encounters. He started marching forward from the get-go. And he swarmed the ill-prepared Alvarado with overhand lefts and right uppercuts. The uppercuts were the culprit of Alvarado’s destruction. God knows how many times Alvarado’s head tossed up every time the right uppercut connects.

In the second round, there’s no sign that the vicious Alvarado (34-4, 23 KO's) of the first battle would show up. There’s no sign that the more tactical sound Alvarado of the second battle would show up. Instead, it was the unprepared Alvarado who showed up and broke the heart of Colorado fans. Cheers during the ring entrance turned boos for Alvarado during the interview.

Perhaps, Alvarado’s best punch was the low-blow that dropped Rios on his knees. The short time that Rios stayed down was too precious for Alvarado. The Denver homeboy was able to find where exactly he is in Denver. Maybe without that low-blow, the fight would have end in the second round itself.

In the third, it is obvious that the accumulation of power shots would not bring Alvarado further into the final bell. A series of overhand left, right upper cuts dropped Alvarado in the third. He managed to stand and finished the round. But it was obvious he’ll not be there for long.

During the break in the third round, ringside physician checked Alvarado’s condition. The doctor was not convinced and advises referee Jay Nady that Alvarado’s not in the position to continue. Nady stopped the fight and saves Alvarado for further beating.

In the end statistics won’t lie. It showed how gun-shy Alvarado was and how trigger-happy Rios was. Rios punches that landed are more than the total punches Alvarado thrown. Rios landed 120 of 290 (41%), and Alvarado only 20 of 87 (23%).

With the defeat, coupled with legal problems, Alvarado’s career could be nose diving. Henry Delgado, Alvarado’s manager, was uncertain on Alvarado's future in boxing. That is even before the Rios fight.

With the win, Rios could again try to comeback to a level where he tried to climbed and failed – the elite level. And that means big fights and big payday.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Canelo-Cotto no-go, bad signal for Mayweather-Pacquiao

Canelo-Cotto no-go, bad signal for Mayweather-Pacquiao

Earlier this month we heard about life on Mayweather-Pacquiao mega fight. A lot of stories surfaced that negotiations were ongoing. Some articles said that Fight venue, date, USADA drug testing agreed. And 60-40 purse split in favor of Mayweather were also settled. These are major hurdles during previous negotiation in 2010 and 2012. Stories that say Pacquiao had already signed the contract. And they are waiting for Mayweather to sign.

There were stories that say HBO and Showtime are ironing out details how to air the fight. It seemed that this issue could be work out. Both network had worked before to stage a major fight, wherein one fighter is under Showtime and the other is under HBO contract. But things worked out and I'm optimistic the same will work for Mayweather-Pacquiao.

But still there's no word from Mayweather's camp. It looks like all the sources are coming from Pacquiao or Top Rank boss Bob Arum's camp. But if the solitary source is Arum… you have to doubt. He will tell lies yesterday and swear he tell the truth today. Well, at least, Showtime's Stephen Espinosa confirmed some of the above mentioned stories.

Recently, fight negotiation fallout for another exciting fight. Canelo-Cotto has been reported a no-go because Cotto's camp showed no movement. Canelo has given Cotto's camp five deadlines. This development, in my opinion is a bad signal for Mayweather-Pacquiao fight. It seems Cotto has another plan. Maybe Mayweather is hinting Cotto's camp for a rematch? A Mayweather rematch of course is a bigger payday for Cotto. I'm assuming here.

But there you go… the reality, which I'm frustrated about looks like it's coming. ESPN's Dan Rafael tweeted this:

What do you think about this?

I hate when stuff like this starts popping in the media. Then Pacquiao and Mayweather started discussing their Plan B's. Where in fact they really don't want working with the Plan A from the beginning.

Pacquiao's Plan B

Pacquiao gave a deadline on Floyd Mayweather. He's waiting for Floyd to sign the contract at the end of January. Otherwise he will choose another opponent. Khan has been mentioned as a potential plan B for Pacquiao. A fight in Dubai could be possible because of the large Filipinos and UK expatriates in the region. A UK showdown could be a huge also.

At this stage, I'm started to become frustrated. I don’t have the habit of expressing my angst and disgust. But I vented out of my frustration on an article I wrote in Niall Doran's Boxing blog.

When both fighters won their respective fights last year, I felt total relief. Because I know that at Mayweather-Pacquaio could be possible. As a boxing fan I wanted to see the best fighting the best. Their respective wins give us hope. Early this month if we are going to digest, it looks like the fights almost coming to the finish line. But still there's no official announcement. Whether this fight is got traction or not, nobody can tell.

If Mayweather and Pacquiao negotiation again breaks like a sand castle. Will you support Mayweather-Cotto rematch or Pacquiao-Khan showdown?

If you'll ask me, as a boxing fan, yes I will support! But I will pray to the boxing gods that both Mayweather and Pacquiao will lose badly as in so badly... and retire. So that we will close this disappointing chapter of boxing and give chance to other fighters to be called the best.

I'm fed up!

Sunday, January 18, 2015

Wilder decisions Stiverne, wins WBC title

[caption id="attachment_5040" align="alignnone" width="701"]Wilder decisions Stiverne, wins WBC title Photo: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME[/caption]

The long wait is over.

Deontay Wilder ended the American heavyweight title drought. He became the first American to hold a heavyweight title since 2007. He dominated the defending champion Bermane Stiverne over the course of 12 rounds at the MGM Grand, Las Vegas, Nevada. The scores were 118-109, 119-108, and 120-107 all for Wilder for the unanimous decision victory.

But it is still yet to be seen if the heavyweight division will get back its long lost grandeur.

The fight did not ended the way most boxing experts predicted. Consensus predictions suggest that either man will win via knockout. Both men have the power to knock its other out anytime of any round. But the knockout didn’t come. Wilder’s patience, commitment to fight from outside and Stiverne’s toughness, and somewhat limited performance tonight, made us heard the final bell.

Wilder (33-0, 32 KO’s) started the fight establishing his long stiff jabs. And his trademark one-two combination. In return, Stiverne (24-2-1, 21 KO’s) was a willing recipient to those jabs and one-two’s. He’s head movement was almost absent the entire fight. A crucial basic movement he almost abandoned. He showed extreme toughness, though, to withstand all those punishment. He hope to execute his catch-and-counter trademark move. But it appears to be a catch-and-catch with few counters that connects.
"It wasn't my night. I felt 100 percent before the fight but once I got in the ring I couldn't cut the ring, I couldn't move my head like I usually do. What can I say? Congrats to him", said Stiverne.

In the second frame, Wilder became more confident. His lead left jab and occasional one-two’s connects with precision. He opened up powerful lefts and rights that buckled Stiverne late in the round. Stiverne held to hang on. Both men fell down. The referee followed them to the floor, who tried to separate them as the bell sounded.

Stiverne got Round 4 following his significant body shots.

In the fifth round, Wilder appeared somewhat tired. It is his first time to come past Round 4. But his jabs and one-two’s still found its home on Stiverne’s head and body. He continued to work behind the jab. Stiverne tried to bait Wilder while leaning to the ropes, but Wilder wisely fired shots from outside and took a step back. Wilder shoot and shoot, while making Stiverne catch and catch.

In the seventh, Wilder once again wobbled Stiverne with his signature one-two and followed through with couple of power lefts and rights. But Stiverne was able to withstand the onslaught. He doubled it up while his back on the ropes and fired his own counters. It was a clear round for Wilder.

The remainder of the fight remained in this pattern; Wilder working behind the jab followed by straight right; Stiverne would cover up miss wildly with the counter hook but lands significant body shots. There’s really no period throughout the fight that either man is in real trouble getting knockout.

In the end, Wilder finally took part of heavyweight title back to America, wherein all other titles held by the Klitschko brothers.
"I'm just excited and happy to bring this belt back to America," Wilder said. "It's going to mean a lot. I think I answered a lot of questions tonight. We knew we could go 12 rounds. We knew we could take a punch. We knew we could do it."

Saturday, January 17, 2015

David Lemieux signs exclusive promotional contract with Golden Boy Promotions

David Lemieux signs exclusive promotional contract with Golden Boy Promotions

Following a crowd-pleasing fight debut in American soil, Canadian David Lemieux (33-2, 31 KO's) signed an exclusive promotional contract with Golden Boy Promotions. In a press release, Lemieux said that he is "very pleased" and "excited" with GBP's association.
"I am very pleased and excited with my association with Golden Boy Promotions," said David Lemieux. "I am ready to face the best and this is the mission that I give to Camille Estephan at Eye of the Tiger Management and Oscar De La Hoya and Eric Gomez at Golden Boy Promotions."

Lemieux scored a knockdown in the third round and eventually won a technical knockout in the tenth round against Gabriel Rosado last year. Rosado, a known bleeder, left eye was swollen shut, forcing the ringside doctor to stop the contest.

In order to settle a lawsuit against GBP's former CEO, Richard Shaefer, GBP surrendered promotional rights to Haymon-advised fighters. Golden Boy Promotions tried to strengthened their pool of fighters by signing international and local talents.

I think signing Lemieux could somehow help fortified the breached Golden Boy banner.

Friday, January 16, 2015

Bermane Stiverne vs Deontay Wilder: Weigh in live streaming

Bermane Stiverne vs Deontay Wilder Final presser, quotes, photos

BERMANE STIVERNE, WBC Heavyweight Champion

"It's going to be a real fight, a fight like you've never seen before. I'm no cab driver, I'm no one-hit wonder, this is the real deal. This belt here isn't going anywhere. This green belt is staying right here in this green hotel.

"Everyone who has supported me, you won't be disappointed. I've seen plenty of guys like Wilder, even guys who talk more than him.

"I don't worry about how I go in the ring, I worry about how I get out of the ring.

"There's something about Deontay ....I'm gonna keep his record clean, because he isn't getting past four rounds.

"This is a real fight and this belt is staying right here in my home town. You're going to get hurt, the worst thing you did was have me take you seriously, and I'm taking you seriously.

"This is going to be a terrific fight. After this fight you will never ever hear about Deontay Wilder."

DEONTAY WILDER, Unbeaten No. 1 WBC Mandatory Contender

"You are all in for a treat. I've never been so ready to whoop a man. There's been a lot of talk, a lot of stuff on social media. But through all that, it's been real. I don't play games. It doesn't get any realer than this. We risk our lives every time in that ring.

"If you only knew the whooping I'm going to put on this boy, you all want the first American champ, but this is for me. I am not scared to walk with my head held high because I am ready for any test.

"This is the most exciting heavyweight bout in years. This is the awakening of the heavyweight division and there's nowhere else to have it than at MGM Grand.

"This is the number one spot to have boxing and I've just been waiting for this for so long. The training, the heartache, the pain and the suffering has been a long journey.

"Many people wrote me off early in my career. People say I'm not supposed to be here. People still write me off and I thank them for that. Because when they write me off I still go to another level and push forward.

"People don't know what it took me to get here. Nothing has been given to me and I appreciate every little thing I have. This made me who I am in life.

"I knew it was going to take hard work to get that belt and I'm ready for that test. This is my time; I don't think my opponent understands purpose because this is my time.

"When I do the unexpected, I don't want you all to degrade this man, Stiverne. I don't want anyone to make excuses for my victory. Stick by your word. Let this be a test for me and watch me pass my test. I guarantee I will do it.

"I know everyone has been speaking for you, Bermane, but they can't fight for you. They can only make it worse for you. They have made it worse for you. You don't understand what type of man you're about to get in the ring with.

"You've only been champion for a short period of time but you walk around like it's been a long time. You're only a tourist to that belt.''

LEO SANTA CRUZ, WBC Super Bantamweight World Champion

"I'm 100 percent ready. I've been training for this fight like all of my fights. I've been training really hard.

"It's not going to be an easy fight, he's a tough fighter. A lot of guys have tried to take the belt away from me and none of them have. I know he's hungry for the title but I'm not going to let that happen.

"I want my opponent to come ready and leave it all in the ring. I want to steal the show and be the fight of the night.''

JESUS RUIZ, Super Bantamweight Contender

"I want to thank everybody who helped me get this opportunity and I promise not to let you down.

"There's a lot of naysayers out there and a lot of people who don't know anything about me. Come Saturday I'll have to show the world who I am. I'm not here to collect a paycheck or take a dive, I'm here to win a world title. I'm going to give everything I have on Saturday to bring that title back to Mexico.

"I'm expecting Leo Santa Cruz to come here in great shape because this is going to be a great fight. I'm going to lay it all out on the line and I promise to bring that title back to Mexico.''

AMIR IMAM, Undefeated Super Lightweight Contender

"I'm ready to put on a show for you all. I want to thank my whole team. I don't think you know what you got yourself into, Fidel. You're going to be the one laying on the mat come Saturday night. You're scared and I can see it in your face.''

FIDEL MALDONADO, JR., Super Lightweight Contender

"I know I'm not underestimating this fight but come Saturday we'll see how it is when he's out on the floor.''

DON KING, Hall Of Fame Promoter

"The fact of the matter is, the heavyweight title has not been the world championship. It's been the German championship.

"Now, the heavyweight title is back here with Bermane Stiverne and it's great to be able to present it in the world's capital of boxing, Las Vegas. To be at the great MGM Grand is a delight.

"Deontay is a tremendous fighter with a perfect record of 32 fights and 32 knockouts. Bermane has 21 knockouts so it's going to be a heck of a fight.

"We want the fans to know that we are bringing boxing back to the people. That's what really counts. The enthusiasm and passion of a promotion leads to people asking 'when is the next one?' That's what we're aiming to do here.

"This is going to be a great fight so don't blink. Don't go up and get any water or anything because this fight is going to be super sensational.''

BERNARD HOPKINS, Future Hall Of Famer and Golden Boy Promotions Partner

"I'm proud that Don King has been a part of my history. What I constantly hear is, 'is boxing in a good position?' I feel like more businesspeople coming to boxing and making the best fights is great. Don King has laid the foundation for that. If we all think one way, we have to think about what is best for boxing.

"We know that the drought in the heavyweight division has gone on long enough and I believe that this Saturday, whoever wins this is going to be talked about. I don't see this going 12 rounds. This is good for boxing.

"I'm here in Las Vegas, on my 50th birthday, I get to be here sharing it with Don King and all of you in this sport that I passionately love so much. This is about a sport that gave me a second chance in life. I put the challenge out to everyone in the sport, let's do what is right for the people who buy our sport.

"I'm proud to sacrifice this time that I could be with my family to be here for this fight and be here for this sport that has done so much for me.''

ROBERT GASPARRI, COO of Golden Boy Promotions

"Golden Boy Promotions is thrilled to be promoting this great card alongside legendary boxing promoter Don King. On behalf of Oscar De La Hoya and everyone at Golden Boy Promotions, I would like to thank the MGM Grand, Corona, Mexico Tourism and all the fighters that are working extremely hard to make this a successful event.

"Golden Boy wants to make the best matches and work with all the promoters, andSaturday night is no exception. This is a heavyweight title fight in America with the potential of having the first American heavyweight champion in a decade."

RICHARD STURM, President and COO MGM Resorts Entertainment and Sports

"The 2015 Las Vegas boxing calendar kicks off Saturday night with the most anticipated heavyweight fight in the United States in a decade. We are confident that the sports fans watching will enjoy this fight card.''

STEPHEN ESPINOZA, Executive General Manager and Vice President, SHOWTIME Sports

"I can't think of a better fight to kick off this year than Stiverne vs. Wilder.  It's the most significant heavyweight fight in the U.S. in at least a decade. It's the biggest heavyweight title fight here at the MGM Grand since Tyson-Holyfield II in 1997.

"When we talk about a Return to Glory, there's no more history than here at the MGM and in the heavyweight division.

"We're very proud to have this fight on SHOWTIME and we're very proud to be in business with these two young men. They're both intelligent and articulate people who are great representatives for our sport. We're proud to have these men on SHOWTIME and we're proud to call them SHOWTIME fighters.

"This is a high quality card of boxing and a high quality card of young men, top to bottom."

JAY DEAS, Wilder's Trainer and Manager

"This is going to be a tremendous fight. Not a lot of people think about Alabama and boxing, but if you know boxing you know that Joe Louis was born in Alabama, Evander Holyfield was born in Alabama, Ernie Shavers was born in Alabama. Those guys left Alabama to get their careers going, but Deontay stayed and he's looking to bring Alabama to the party come Saturday night.

"We know Stiverne is a great champion, we know he's at his peak and we know that he's at his best and that's how it ought to be. It's a great fight between two great heavyweights.''

STACY MCKINLEY, Imam's Trainer

"Amir Imam is a young version of Bernard Hopkins. You have fighters out there throwing punchers like rock em' sock em' robots. I took a look at this kid Imam and I knew I had to go drop everything and train him.

"Imam trains every day, all he does is train. Even when he's walking through the mall he's shadow boxing. He wants to be one of the greatest that's ever lived.

"This is a young man who has the skills of Ray Robinson, the defense of Joe Gans. He also has the skills of Harry Armstrong. You put that together and there's nothing left, that's how he became the 'Young Master.'

"You're looking at the future of boxing, he's going to be the future face of boxing. Boxing needs a superstar. Imam can fight any style and that's why he's The Master.''

Photo Credit: Esther Lin/SHOWTIME

Leo Santa Cruz Don King Bernard Hopkins Birthday Bermane Stiverne Deontay Wilder Bermane Stiverne Amir Imam and Fidel Maldonado Jr Deontay Wilder Amir Imam and Fidel Maldonado Jr Leo Santa Cruz and Jesus Ruiz Leo Santa Cruz and Jesus Ruiz Group Shot Stiverne and Wilder face off

Sunday, January 11, 2015

Top 3 fighters for Andre Ward's ring return

Top 3 fighters for Andre Ward's ring return

The promotional woes of undefeated super middleweight champion Andre Ward (27-0, 14 KO's) was over. It’s time for him to move on. It’s time for him to find out who he should be fighting for the sake of the boxing fans that have long been waiting for his ring return.

I can sense how happy Andre Ward, while keying in the letters that composed the statement he tweeted on Friday. He tweeted with hash tag #NextChapter. Ward as a professional fighter felt the difficulties. The difficulty in going battles inside legal courts. Instead of real battles in the ring.

Now, legal battles are finally over with him. Promotional problems with his previous promoter late Dan Goosen settled. Details of the settlement were not disclosed. But it is certain that the problem is over. Ward is optimistic in his ring return and is now starting to name names who he wanted to fight in his ting return.

But for me, as a boxing fan, I have three fighters in mind, for Ward to fight when he returns to the ring. I don’t care in which order he will fight these opponents.

Here are my Top 3 fighters for Andre Ward's ring return. In no specific order,  I want Ward to face them all regardless of the outcome of each fight.

1. Gennady Gorlovkin (31-0, 28 KO's) – Andre, in his interview with Ring TV said that he is willing to fight GGG. But it seems that he wants only at super middleweight. Although, for me, I fells that GGG looks small at middleweight. But if he chooses to go up in weight and fight Ward, I don’t think anyone has a great advantage in weight. The fact that he's sidelined for more than one year. And it cost his pound-for-pound ranking. Getting back to super middleweight fighting form is a problem. But I still believed it’s not a serious problem. He can still make the super middleweight limit and fight GGG. If GGG don't want a fight with Ward at SMW. Ward moving down to middleweight is a serious weight problem. If a catch-weight of 165 pounds will not also work. Then, here comes the next fighter that I want Andre ward to face in his ring return.

2. Sergey Kovalev (26-0-1, 23 KO's) – If indeed Andre Ward has problem at super middleweight then move north for the Russian. This is another fight that make sense for Ward. He’s been fighting for sometime at the super middleweight. And I think it’s time for him to take another title at another weight division. It would be exciting if he will move to the light heavyweight and face Sergey Kovalev. It will be an interesting math-up.

We all know that Kovalev does not rely solely on his power. He can fight also tactically and he proved that against master tactician Bernard Hopkins – whom he dominated over 12 rounds.

Ward is a kind of boxer who always finds a way to win. He loves to make his move first while anticipating opponent’s counter-moves. Ward shifts attack swiftly to defense after a sound offense. His style at times results to a hit-hug combination. Not a fan-friendly combination to master.

3. Carl Foch (33-2, 24 KO's) – A rematch with 'The Cobra' is another big fight for both men, if Ward doesn’t want, to move up to meet Kovalev, or move down to meet Golovkin.

Froch demolished George Grooves in their rematch. Of what has been considered as the biggest all British boxing showdowns in UK at the full-house Wembley Stadium. Froch wanted a fight in the US. In the US or UK the fight is huge and the fans would definitely want it.

Ward won on all three judges the first time they met in 2012. Froch seemed too cautious during that fight. And Ward was able to execute well ahead of Froch in all aspects. I think if the meet one more time, Froch would definitely execute a well adjusted game-plan based on the previous fight. And it is exciting to see what Ward's counter measure.

If you are to choose which fighter should Ward fight next? Would it be GGG first? Then Sergey and Froch? In which order you want?

If the fighters were not listed above, who do you think is best of Ward in his ring return?

Saturday, January 10, 2015

Golden Boy Promotion wins some, loses some


Floyd Mayweather Jr. v Robert Guerrero - News Conference

Golden Boy Promotion literally wins some and loses some fighters under its umbrella.

In a recent press release, Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotion announced that: "they are pushing to make 2015 its best year yet, by adding local California talent and signing international talents".

Local talents include; Abraham Lopez, Roy Tapia, Christian Gonzalez, Emilio Sanchez, Jesus Ivan Delgado and Nick Arce. International talents include, Japanese Yoshihiro “Maestrito” Kamegai (25-2-1, 22 KOs) and Filipino Mercito “No Mercy” Gesta (28-1-1, 16 KOs).

But late Friday, Yahoo Sports’ Kevin Iole reported that Golden Boy Promotion “settled its lawsuit” with former CEO Richard Schaefer. With the settlement, GBP “surrendered” its promotional rights to some of its top boxers who are advised by Haymon; welterweight Adrien Broner and Danny Garcia were mentioned.

Although GPB retained promotional rights to other Haymon-advised fighter, but it’s obvious that the talents he lost outweighed those he acquired. But anyhow, I see it as a good thing for boxing and for those personalities involved as the strife between former friends finally settled.

It seems to me that 2015 had a good start, as top boxing personalities having conflicts in 2014 chose to move forward this year. Parties involved with their respective 2014 conflicts now settling their issues to move on and prepare for a good 2015 start.

Late Friday, undefeated super middleweight champion Andre Ward (27-0, 14 KO's) also tweeted with a hash tag “#NextChapter” saying that he is happy to be part of Roc Nation. He’s been long sidelined due to promotional conflicts with his late promoter Dan Goossen. With this development, I think we will see more of Andre Ward. I hope it’s never too late for him.

Meanwhile, speaking of Roc Nation, Gary Shaw announced also on Friday that he officially joined Jay Z’s boxing division.

Friday, January 9, 2015

Andre Ward: Happy to be part of the Roc Nation family

[caption id="attachment_4965" align="aligncenter" width="457"]Andre Ward: Happy to be part of the Roc Nation family Photo grab from Andre Ward's Instagram[/caption]

It seemed that Roc Nation is getting more and more feathers on its wings in flying their boxing division in the early part of 2015. Early Friday, Gary Shaw also made an announcement that he "officially joined" Roc Nation, and that there will be no more Gary Show Production.

Then, late Friday, super middleweight champ Andre Ward went to twitter and posted that he is "happy to be part of Roc Nation family".

Following Dan Goossen's passing due to to liver cancer in September it seemed that the litigation and suit filed by Andre Ward has finally over. Ward had been sidelined for more than a year now due to promotional conflicts between him and his long-time promoter. Inactivity removed him from many boxing's pound-for-pound list lately.

Although there's no official confirmation yet from Roc Nation side, but the above photo tells a thousand words. I hope this development would make us see more of Andre Ward inside the boxing ring showcasing his talent and appearance no more to any district courts.

Roc Nation officially owns Gary Shaw Productions

Gary Shaw Productions no more. GSP now officially owned by Roc Nation.

“I have officially joined Roc Nation." says Gary Shaw according to a report on Ring TV.
"I’ll be running their boxing division and working closely with Dave Itskowitch. The rest of the staff that’s there and all of the people who have been with GSP are still going to be with us. There will be no more GSP.”

To those who are unaware, Roc Nation is founded by Shawn Corey Carter known as Jay Z, an American rapper and record producer. Roc Nation recently propelled into the sport of boxing when the company won a bidding to promote a bout between Matt Korobov and Peter Quillin. Unfortunately, Quillin pulled out from the fight.

Santa Cruz to Rigondeaux: He is not invisible


Undefeated super bantamweight champion Leo Santa Cruz (28-0-1, 16 KO's) said that he is tired of people telling him that he is  scared of a Rigondeaux fight. "He [Rigondeaux] is not invisible.", said Santa Cruz during the open media workout on Thursday at Who's Next Boxing Academy in preparation for his upcoming title defense agaisnt Jesus "Estrella" Ruiz (33-5-5, 22 KOs) on Saturday at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
"I feel bad for all the people talking, but if they were in my shoes they would understand. I want the Rigondeaux fight, but the promoters have not come to an agreement. If it was up to me, I would fight him whenever. I am tired of people telling me that I am scared. I am looking for that fight as soon as possible, he is not invisible."

Santa Cruz  further said that he have a chance to beat Rigondeuax, "I think I have a chance to beat him. I know he is a tough fighter, but that's what we are here for, to fight the best."

Leo Santa Cruz Media Workout Photos (Photo credit Craig Bennett - Hoganphotos/SHOWTIME)

Leo-Santa-Cruz_Fukuda SantaCruzWorkout_Hoganphotos-SHOWTIME-3 SantaCruzWorkout_Hoganphotos-SHOWTIME-2 SantaCruzWorkout_Hoganphotos-SHOWTIME-1 SantaCruzWorkout_Hoganphotos-SHOWTIME-5

Thursday, January 8, 2015

Golden Boy Promotion Bolters International Roster

LOS ANGELES (Jan. 8) - Golden Boy Promotions is pushing to make 2015 its best year yet, adding a host of local California talent as well as signing six of the international scene's top stars to exclusive promotional contracts.

Now competing for the Golden Boy Promotions team are top Californian prospectsAbraham Lopez, Roy Tapia, Christian Gonzalez, Emilio Sanchez, Jesus Ivan Delgadoand Nick Arce.

"I'm excited to kick off 2015 with the addition of these talented fighters to the Golden Boy roster," said Oscar De La Hoya, Founder and President of Golden Boy Promotions. "Each of these fighters have the talent, skill, determination and desire that it takes to make it to the top."

In addition, exceptional international talent now fighting under the Golden Boy Promotions banner will be the exciting  Japanese welterweight Yoshihiro Kamegai, Filipino starMercito Gesta, Mexican knockout artist Gilberto Gonzalez, top Mexican prospectAntonio Gutierrez, Brazilian Olympian, Everton Lopes and Columbian medalist Oscar Negrete.

Fighting out of Tokyo, Japan, 32-year-old Yoshihiro "Maestrito" Kamegai (25-2-1, 22 KOs) built a stellar reputation in Asia for years, winning regional titles at 140 and 147 pounds. But it was a fight he lost to Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero in June of 2014 that made him a star on the international scene, as the two engaged in a Fight of the Year candidate. On Dec. 13, Kamegai stopped Oscar "El Tigre" Godoy in four rounds.

Born in Cebu, Philippines, 27-year-old San Diegan Mercito "No Mercy" Gesta (28-1-1, 16 KOs) has lived up to his nickname "No Mercy" when it comes to opponents, as he's won 28 of his 30 professional bouts. A former world title challenger looking to get another shot at the lightweight title, Gesta has won two bouts straight, most recently halting Luis "El Vampiro" Arceo in seven rounds.

27-year old knock out artists, Gilberto "Flaco" Gonzalez (23-3, 19 KOs) from Distrito Federal, Mexico, has been undefeated since 2013 and has defeated all seven of his opponents by knock out.  His most recent fight, against Puerto Rico's Jeffery Fontanez, in Cancun, Mexico was an all-out war.  Gonzalez knocked down Fontanez once in the fourth round and twice in the fifth, resulting in a satisfying win for Gonzalez and stripping Fontanez of his undefeated status.

La Puente, Calif. native, Abraham Lopez (17-0, 12 KOs) has been on a hot streak since his professional debut in 2008. Undefeated, Lopez has won twelve of his bouts via knockout, and is looking to continue the momentum and get back in the ring in 2015.

A native of Tijuana, Baja California, Mexico, 20-year-old Antonio "La Joya" Gutierrez(17-0-1, 7 KOs) is in his fourth year as a professional, and after learning his trade on the tough Mexican scene, the promising middleweight made his United States debut in October of 2014, winning by majority decision against veteran Dashon "Fly Boy" Johnson. In his most recent bout on Dec. 13 13, Gutierrez defeated Erick "El Brujo" Mireles.

East Los Angeles' Roy "Pitbull" Tapia (10-0-1, 5 KOs) has been in the gym since he was seven years old, following in the footsteps of his father, a former professional boxer. Tapia made his debut in 2011, and in his most recent bout on Nov. 13, the unbeaten 23-year-old featherweight scored the biggest win of his career over 50-fight veteran Luis "Titi" Maldonado.

A professional since 2013, Buena Park, Calif. knockout artist Christian "Chimpa" Gonzalez (8-0, 8 KOs) is a boxing legacy, his brother is the former WBC Featherweight World Champion Alejandro "Cobrita" Gonzalez.  He has destroyed all willing to face him thus far in his career, winning each bout by knockout. Gonzalez has shown that he is a power puncher to watch in 2015 and beyond.

Now making his home in Los Angeles, 27-year-old Colombia native Oscar "Jaguar" Negrete (7-0, 3 KOs) won bronze medals as an amateur for his country in the 2006 South American, Central American and Caribbean Games before turning professional in 2013. His success has not slowed down since then, with three of his bouts ending by way of knockout.

Los Angeles undefeated featherweight Emilio Sanchez (5-0, 4 KOs) can do it all in the ring, making him a natural to join the Golden Boy Promotions squad of future starts. A professional+ since 2013, Sanchez won his first three bouts via first-round knockout, and he has continued to impress with 2014 victories over Jonathan Ramos and Juan Alvarado.

Jesus Ivan Delgado (3-0, 1 KO) of Los Angeles, Calif. is a 24-year-old prospect on the fast track to big things at 135 pounds. A favorite at the Fantasy Springs Resort and Casino in Indio, Calif., where he has already made three appearances, Delgado is coming off a shutout decision win over Rick Quevedo on November 13.

A two-time Olympian and a two time Pan American Games medalist for his home country of Brazil, Everton Lopes won 240 bouts as an amateur, earning gold at the 2011 World Amateur Championships and bronze in 2013. In 2015, the talented 26-year-old southpaw will make his professional debut, and he will have a nation behind him as he pursues a world title.

Fighting out of the Westside Boxing Club in Los Angeles, 18-year-old featherweight Nick Arce (1-0, 1 KO) is a former amateur standout who entered the professional boxing world in style in Nov. 13, of 2014 with a fourth round knockout of Adalbert "Kiki" Valenzuela.

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Mike Alvarado arrested in Denver, fight with Rios still on

Mike Alvarado arrested in Denver, fight with Rios still on

Boxer Mike Alvarado was arrested on Saturday in Denver according to a report from The Denver Post.

Alvarado is several weeks away from his fight with Brandon Rios. The anticipated trilogy is scheduled on 24th Jan. at the 1stBank Center, Bloomfield, Colorado. Alvarado's preparation for this "must win" fight of his career might be jeopardized. But Henry Delgado, Alvarado's manager, assured that "there's no problem with the fight."
"As long as he's out. And he's been bailed out. The fight's only in a few weeks. I don't see that being a problem."

Alvarado who had two classic war with Rios is in a "must win" situation. After he evened up the score with Rios in a rubber match, Alvarado had lost twice in a row in his last two fights. He was knocked out by Ruslan Provodnikov in October 2013 and dropped a unanimous decision over Mexican great Juan Manuel Marquez in May 2014.

Although Delgado assured Alvarado's fight with Rios will have no problem, but he is uncertain on Alvarado's future in boxing.

"But after that, [fight with Rios] I don't know" said Delgado.

Friday, January 2, 2015

Leo Santa Cruz to defend title against Jesus Ruiz

LAS VEGAS (Jan. 2, 2015) - Crowd-pleasing WBC Super Bantamweight World Champion Leo "Terremoto" Santa Cruz (28-0-1, 16 KOs) puts his title and unbeaten record on the line in a 12-round bout against Jesus "Estrella" Ruiz (33-5-5, 22 KOs).  Plus promising world-ranked undefeated junior welterweight Amir "Young Master" Imam (15-0, 13 KOs) will face hard-hitting Fidel "The Atrisco Kid" Maldonado Jr. (19-2, 16 KOs) in a 10-round fight, promising an undercard full of action on Saturday, Jan. 17at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas live on SHOWTIME® (10 p.m. ET/7 p.m. PT).

The Jan. 17 "Return To Glory" fight card co-promoted by Don King Productions andGolden Boy Promotions is highlighted by a heavy-duty main-event matchup that has stirred the interest of even the most casual sports fan -- dangerous defending WBC Heavyweight World Champion Bermane "B. Ware" Stiverne (24-1-1, 21 KOs), of Las Vegas by way of Haiti, against unbeaten mandatory challenger Deontay "The Bronze Bomber" Wilder (32-0, 32 KOs) of Tuscaloosa, Ala.

"2015 is going to be a huge year for boxing and Golden Boy's opening act in Las Vegas will get things started with a bang," said Oscar De La Hoya, Founder and President of Golden Boy Promotions.

"In addition to Deontay Wilder looking to bring a heavyweight title back to America for the first time in a decade, longtime favorite Leo Santa Cruz and rising star Fidel Maldonado Jr. -- electric fighters with significant power -- will both appear in separate fights on the undercard, giving boxing fans a chance to see three top stars in action on a single card."

All-action and two-division world champion Santa Cruz, of Los Angeles, Calif., will be making his fourth defense of the 122-pound title he won with a third-round knockout over Victor "Vikingo" Terrazas (37-3-1, 21 KOs) on Aug. 24, 2013. Santa Cruz, 26, is coming off of a second-round technical knockout over Manuel "Suavecito" Roman (17-3-3, 17 KOs) on Sept. 13 at MGM Grand.

Before stepping up a notch in weight, Santa Cruz was the IBF Bantamweight World Champion, winning that belt in June 2012 and making three defenses. An excellent body puncher who is at his best when he keeps up a relentless pace, pressures his opponents and wears them down, Santa Cruz is 7-0 with three knockouts in world title fights.

Santa Cruz, who's as personable and courteous outside the ring as he is ferocious and determined inside, said, "I feel great about my upcoming fight with Ruiz.  He is a strong fighter, undefeated in the past two years and the kind of opponent I want to fight."

"I want to put on a great show on Jan. 17," Santa Cruz continued. "And show boxing fans that I am a strong fighter ready to go to the next level and take on the top, tough fighters in the division: Guillermo Rigondeaux,  Scott Quigg, Carl Frampton and Abner Mares."

Jesus Ruiz of, Nogales, Sonora, Mexico, retired his amateur status at the tender age of 16. He has won five in a row, including a clear 10-round decision in perhaps a career-best performance over Leonilo "Veneno" Miranda (36-7, 33 KOs) in his most recent start on Nov. 7, 2014.

A professional since November of 2006, the 25-year-old  Ruiz will be getting the opportunity of a lifetime in just his third start in the United States (and third outside of Mexico). He won a lopsided eight-round decision over Enrique "Cuate" Quevedo (16-7-1, 10 KOs) on Aug. 24, 2013, in Cabazon, Calif., after losing his U.S. debut on an upset split decision in Tucson, Ariz., in July of 2008.

"I want thank Golden Boy Promotions and SHOWTIME  for this great opportunity to fight for the world title," said  Ruiz. "I know many believe I have no chance, but I am well prepared and ready to give my all. I am  ready for war and ready to leave it all in the ring like a true Mexican warrior."

Like the heavyweights in the main event, Albany, New York native, Amir Imam(pronounced "EE-mom") and Fidel Maldonado Jr., of Albuquerque, New Mexico, are not accustomed to putting in a full night's work. Between them they have gone the distance only six times in a combined 37 fights.

"Amir Imam is a great kid and a very exciting fighter, and this is going to be a very exciting fight," said Hall of Fame promoter Don King. "I think Amir is going to be the next Tito Trinidad.  He can both box and punch and he is going to be a bad man.  I want a title for Amir and this fight with Maldonado is en route to that."

"This is by far the biggest fight of my career and I've got to show the world what I've got,'' Imam said. "I know that Maldonado is a southpaw and he comes forward and throws a lot of punches. I plan on boxing the kid for 10 rounds, but if the opportunity for a KO comes then I will go get it.  I'm not letting anyone take this opportunity away from me.  I have worked too hard for it."

"Maldonado had a great amateur background, he's very smart and he's a very good fighter. It's going to be a great fight," said Imam's head trainer Stacey McKinley. "Maldonado's fought a better class of fighters than Amir but never fought a fighter like Amir and most have not.  He's not strong enough for Amir and Amir will walk straight through him. Amir will be Don King's next superstar."

Imam, an amateur standout and silver medalist at the 2011 U.S. Olympic Trials, "doesn't get paid for overtime" in the professional ranks as 11 of his fights ended in rounds one or two.

The 24-year-old has steadily improved as his professional career has progressed and is 2-0 on ShoBox: The New Generation. In what was expected to be his toughest test, Imamknocked out Jeremy "Hollywood" Bryan (17-5, 7 KOs) in the second round of his  ShoBox debut on April 12, 2013.

Since the Bryan blowout, Imam's taken a big step up in competition, most notably in his last three fights, beginning with a fourth-round stoppage of then-undefeated Jared "The Quiet Storm" Robinson (14-0) on Feb. 21, 2014, in Cleveland on ShoBox; the followingMay 10 on a unanimous eight-round decision over Yordenis Ugas (15-3, 7 KOs) (it was Imam's first fight to go the distance since his pro debut in November 2011); and most recently, last Dec. 13 when he stopped Santos "El Toro" Benavides (23-6-2, 17 KOs) in the sixth round.

Maldonado Jr., 23, is a tough, hard-nosed, aggressive-minded left-hander who'd won six straight, five by knockout, before his last outing ended in a third round no contest against Fernando "Picapiedra" Silva  on Dec. 20, 2014, in Cancun, Mexico.

"I have been training hard since my last fight against Fernando Silva, and have had no time off," said Maldonado Jr. "I am ready to get the job done, and I hope he is ready.  My goal is to show fans that I can put on a great show, step up the competition and get ready for a title match one fight at a time."

The NC stopped some of the momentum Maldonado Jr. had regained in the previous 18 months, since suffering his second pro loss on a disputed 10-round split decision to fellow prospect Michael "The Artist" Perez (21-1-2, 10 KOs) on Aug. 24, 2012, on ShoBox in Indio, Calif. Maldonado Jr. was out-boxed and clearly behind on points early but rallied to floor and hurt Perez badly with the last punch of the hotly contested fight in which Maldonado Jr. felt he was robbed.

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Manny Pacquiao: @FloydMayweather let's not drop the ball on fighting each other next year!

Eight division champion and Filipino boxing icon Manny Pacquiao did not let the year 2014 left without reminding boxing's pound-for-pound best and fellow welterweight  champion Floyd Mayweather Jr. about their long delayed fight.

On New Year's eve Pacquiao (57-5-2, 38 KO's) went to Twitter and tweeted with a hash tag: #LetsMakeFistory.