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MARCH 23, 2017 
 EX-CHAMP STEVIE JOHNSTON HONORED IN COLORADO

From the WBC: Stevie "Lil But Bad" Johnston, who fought professionally from 1993-2008 and had two reigns as WBC lightweight champion, will this Saturday be inducted into the Colorado Golden Gloves Hall of Fame. Johnston (42-6-1 as pro) started boxing at age eight. Trained by his uncles Rich and Chris, he achieved outstanding success, including a brilliant amateur career of 260-13, that saw him fight Vernon Forrest and Shane Mosley.  Stevie's amateur greatest highlight was winning the super lightweight gold medal in the Pan American Games in Havana, Cuba in 1991.


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MARCH 23, 2017 
 CHERRY VS. DOUGLAS RESCHEDULED FOR APRIL 4TH

Press Release: Edner Cherry (35-7-2, 19 KOs) will meet Omar Douglas (17-1, 12 KOs) in a ten-round lightweight bout that headlines Premier Boxing Champions' Toe-to-Toe Tuesdays on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Deportes on Tuesday, April 4th at Sands Bethlehem Events Center in Bethlehem, PA. Televised coverage also features an eight-round showdown between unbeaten featherweights Stephen Fulton (10-0, 5 KOs) and Luis Rosario (8-0-1, 7 KOs) plus Bethlehem's Frank DeAlba (21-2-2-, 9 KOs) taking on Massachusetts' Ryan Kielczweski (26-2, 8 KOs) in an eight-round super featherweight attraction.

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MARCH 23, 2017 
 CLUB FIGHTS TONIGHT IN EXCHANGE L.A.

Press Release: Tonight (Thursday) at the Exchange L.A. nightclub in downtown Los Angeles, Riverside featherweight Daniel “Twitch” Franco (15-0-3, 10 KOs) makes a homecoming appearance against Chula Vista’s Christopher “S.D. Kid” Martin (29-8-3, 9 KOs). Franco is coming off the most important win of his career, which came in last November via fourth-round knockout over previously unbeaten Derrick Murray. Tonight, Franco will face his most experienced opponent to date: Martin, who started his career undefeated in his first 25 bouts.

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MARCH 23, 2017 
 FRANK GALARZA BOLSTERS MANAGEMENT TEAM

Pres Release: Junior middleweight Frank Galarza (17-2-2) has hired Adrian Clark of AC Sports Management, LLC to guide his career.  Galarza is coming off of consecutive losses against a current world title holder, Jarrett Hurd, and former one, Ishe Smith. The 31 year-old from Brooklyn, New York is hoping to get back on track. "I know that I have a lot of fight left in me. The past two years were tough but that's the business for you. I am glad to have the right team behind me, now. Big things ahead," said Galarza.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: BOB ARUM
By G. Leon

Mayweather-McGregor "no contest" reminds Bobfather of Ali-Inoki

GL: Congrats on a fantastic card in New York over the weekend. Can you give us some thoughts on the event? I'll tell you in all the years I've been doing these shows, that was something I'll never forget. The crowd was electric, the staging was unbelievable, the fights weren't the greatest fights in the world but nobody gave a shit because everybody was having such a great time. It was really something special.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


BROOK VS. SPENCE LANDS IN SHEFFIELD FOR MAY 27TH

Press Release: Britain's Kell Brook will defend his IBF welterweight title against Errol Spence of the United States at Bramall Lane in Sheffield, England on Saturday May 27th. The fight will be shown live on Sky Sports Box Office in the UK and live on Showtime in the USA. It will be Brook's fourth defense since his August 2014 career-best win over Shawn Porter.  He then blitzed Jo Jo Dan, Frankie Gavin and Kevin Bizier before stepping up in weight to face world middleweight champion Gennady Golovkin in September.  After a valiant loss to Golovkin, the Sheffield star faces Spence, an unbeaten, highly skilled superstar into the ring.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


BERCHELT TO DEFEND VS. MIURA IN JUNE

World Boxing Council President Mauricio Sulaimán confirmed at his WBC weekly conference, that Mexico's Miguel Berchelt had reached an agreement to make the mandatory defense of his WBC 130-pound championship against former champion Takashi Miura. According to Sulaiman, Berchelt (31-1) will face Japan's Miuira (31-3-2) on June 24th in California. Miura held the title from 2013 through 2015, when he lost it to Francisco Vargas. Berchelt gained the title in a brutal battle with Vargas in January. Miura defeated Miguel Roman in another war on the undercard of Berchelt-Vargas. 



 
MARCH 22, 2017 


LINARES VS. CROLLA II FINAL PRESSER QUOTES

Press Release: WBA lightweight champion Jorge Linares and former champion Anthony Crolla participated in a public workout at National Football Museum in Manchester, England on Tuesday in preparation for their rematch this Saturday, live on Showtime from England's Manchester Arena.  Linares (41-3, 27 KOs) dethroned Crolla (31-5-3, 13 KOs) last September in Manchester to capture the WBA crown.  Crolla and Linares were neck-and-neck going into the sixth round until Linares rocked the hometown favorite with a series of shots that galvanized the Venezuelan toward a 115-114, 115-113 and 117-111 unanimous decision.  



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MARCH 22, 2017 


JOSESITO LOPEZ SET FOR APRIL 9TH FOX SPORTS SHOW

Press Release: Welterweight Josesito Lopez (34-7, 19 KOs) returned to action in November for his first fight in 21 months after overcoming a hand injury, and he had little trouble shaking off the ring rust as he earned a wide six-round unanimous decision over Todd Manuel (12-11-1). That bout was something to tide over Lopez's desire to get back in the ring. Now he’s ready to take another step back as he is booked to take on Mexico’s Saul Corral (22-8, 13 KOs) on April 9th in a ten-round bout that headlines a Fox Sports 1 card at The Novo in Los Angeles. In the co-feature, lightweight Alejandro Luna (21-0, 15 KOs) will take on Andrey Klimov (19-3, 9 KOs) in a ten-round bout and 2016 U.S. Olympian Carlos Balderas will make his professional debut in a 130-pound bout set for six rounds. Editors Note: Boxingtalk first reported this news last week.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


YOUNG RUSSIAN STAR DMITRY BIVOL COMING TO USA

Press Release: Former Russian amateur standout Dmitry Bivol will face Samuel Clarkson in the twelve-round light heavyweight bout on ShoBox: The New Generation on Friday, April 14th at MGM National Harbor in National Harbor, Md., just outside of Washington, D.C. At stake will be Bivol's WBA interim title. In the co-feature, former amateur standouts Juan Ruiz (18-0, 11 KOs) and Malik Hawkins (10-0, 7 KOs) will square off in an eight-round 147-pound bout. 



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MARCH 22, 2017 


THE THIRD BARTHELEMY BROTHER LANDS FOX SPORTS HEADLINER

Press Release: Cuba's Leduan Barthelemy (12-0, 6 KOs) will square-off against Reynaldo Blanco (14-3, 8 KOs) in a ten-round super featherweight contest that headlines Premier Boxing Champions' Toe-to-Toe Tuesdays on Fox Sports 1 and Fox Deportes on Tuesday, March 28th from Robinson Rancheria Resort and Casino in Nice, California. Televised coverage also features Marcos Hernandez (9-0, 2 KOs) facing Kyrone Davis (11-1, 5 KOs) in a ten-round junior middleweight contest.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


MARTIN J. WARD SET TO DEFEND BRITISH TITLE ON SATURDAY

Press Release: British super featherweight champion Martin J. Ward (16-0-2) wants to wrap up the Lord Lonsdale belt for keeps before moving onto bigger honors – and he meets Maxi Hughes (16-2-2) for the third time on Saturday night at England's Manchester Arena, live on Sky Sports. Ward one once, and the other fight was a draw.

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MARCH 22, 2017 


SULLIVAN BARRERA-FELIX VALERA HBO LATINO APRIL 15
By G. Leon

On April 15 the Mohegan Sun Casino will host to an HBO Latino telecast headlined by a solid light heavyweight match-up between Sullivan Barrera and Felix Valera. Barrera recently withdrew from a IBF title eliminator with Artur Beterbiev and managed to find himself a relatively soft landing spot in an HBO Latino main event. Valera is no walk in the park and has given highly touted Dmitriy Bivol the toughest fight of his career. Remember where you heard it first! 12:22 AM EST

 
MARCH 21, 2017 


TERENCE CRAWFORD-FELIX DIAZ MAY 20 ON HBO
By G. Leon

Boxingtalk has been informed that undefeated junior welterweight champion Terence Crawford will face Felix Diaz at the Prudential Center in Newark, New Jersey on May 20, in the main event of an HBO World Championship Boxing telecast. Contracts have yet to be signed, but a formal announcement should be coming very soon. There will be more to follow, until then remember where you heard it first! 8:51 PM EST

 
MARCH 21, 2017 


MATTHEW MACKLIN SPEAKS ON CONLAN DEBUT, GOLOVKIN-SAUNDERS AND MORE
By G. Leon

GL: Congrats on a fantastic victory for Michael Conlan who you manage, can you give us some thoughts on his pro debut? I thought he performed well under the circumstances. I don't think it was his best performance he loads up a little bit and he got a little excited at times, but coming out to an atmosphere like that in his pro debut I think he could be excused for that. GL: Michael switched from righty to lefty quite a bit during the fight, do you like him better as an orthodox or southpaw? I think I like him better as an orthodox fighter because I think things flow better for him, but the fact that he can switch is good because some guys can't handle southpaws. In some fights he may stay southpaw for the whole fight if the opponent can't deal with it, he's very unique in that he seems very comfortable in both stances and it's another strength of his as well.

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MARCH 21, 2017 


POST FIGHT INTERVIEW: STEVE CUNNINGHAM
By G. Leon

GL: Congrats on your recent victory. How did it feel to get back in there and shake the dust off? Can you give us some thoughts on your performance? It was good to get those rounds in. The fight was scheduled for eight, but the time was running over so it had to be knocked down to a six rounder. I was like whatever, I been on a long layoff so I just wanted to get in there and kick the dust off. Felipe is one of those dudes that will run you into something if you let him, but I worked on some things. I got my speed, I felt good, I felt normal and it was good to be back in there and do some things."

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MARCH 21, 2017 


KUBRAT PULEV BOOKS FIGHT VS. KEVIN JOHNSON

Press Release: Heavyweight contender Kubrat Pulev (pictured) will face Kevin Johnson (30-7-1, 14 KOs) on Friday, April 28th in Sofia, the capital of Pulev's home country, Bulgaria. Pulev (24-1, 13 KOs) made a triumphant homecoming on December 3rd fighting for the first time in his home country, and defeating former WBC titlist Samuel Peter in front of 15,000 fans. [Johnson had not won a fight since 2013 until ten days ago, when he returned with a six-round decision win over Jamal Woods (11-32) in Arkansas].

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MARCH 21, 2017 


TWO COLLEGE GRADS TO BATTLE FOR NEW YORK TITLE

Press Release: Star Boxing is bringing boxing back to the Paramount in Huntington, NY on Friday, March 24, 2017 despite New York's onerous new insurance regulations which promoter Joe DeGuardia says has otherwise destroyed pro boxing in New York.  In the main event, Hicksville's Anthony Karperis (13-2 4KO'S) will be defending his New York state 140-pound title against Brooklyn's Scott Burrell (12-2 8KO'S) in a ten-round contest. Karperis is a college graduate of New York's Hofstra University.   Burrell, born to Jamaican parents in Brooklyn NY, was raised in London, England, where he graduated from Roehampton University with a degree in business studies and sports science.

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MARCH 21, 2017 


OTTO WALLIN TO HEADLINE IN SUNDSVALL, SWEDEN

Press Release: Heavyweight Otto Wallin (17-0, 11 KOs) will get a homecoming fight on April 22nd against Italian domestic champion Gianluca Mandras (12-4, 5 KOs). The 26 year-old from Sundsvall, Sweden headlines his city’s first pro boxing event, which also features two-time Ugandan Olympian Kennedy Katende and female boxing star Mikaela Laurén, with more names to be announced shortly.

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MARCH 21, 2017 


HORACIO A. CABRAL GETS BIG ROAD WIN IN ONTARIO

Horacio A. Cabral W10 Logan McGuiness... In the main event in Brampton, Ontario (outside Toronto), Logan Cotton McGuinness was shocked by Argentina's Horacio Alfredo Cabral, who troubled McGuinness with his hand speed and movement. In the end, Cabral netted a unanimous decision victory in the super featherweight contest.
 
Sandy Tsagouris W8 Also on the show, Sandy Tsagouris (16-2)captured the vacant WIBA super featherweight title in a hard-fought battle with Carla Torres (5-4) over the weekend in front of about 4000 fans. Tsagouris won a unanimous decision by scores of 77-75 and 78-74 (twice). source for all results: Lee Baxter Promotions

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MARCH 20, 2017 


TRAVIS KAUFFMAN: I'VE PROVEN I BELONG AT THE TOP OF THIS DIVISION
By G. Leon

Kauffman wants Mansour rematch or another top contender

GL: Obviously it wasn't the result you wanted, but can you give us some thoughts on your performance and the decision? I thought I did good, I thought I let my foot off the gas in the sixth, seventh, eighth and ninth round. I started off at a very fast pace, faster than most heavyweights and I wanted to set the tone and it kind of, not that it backfired, because I thought I did the right thing by setting a fast pace. He had been off for fifteen months and he's older. Even though he keeps himself in great shape, I thought I would wear him down and he was tired. As he was catching his second wind, I was slowing down and I thought I dominated rounds one through five. I thought I lost six through ten, round eleven could've gone either way and in round twelve I feel like I did enough to win. I can't cry over spilled milk, I feel like I did enough to win or at worst a draw, but it is what it is. I take my hat off to Amir Mansour, he can punch. I have a chin and I don't like to show people I have a chin because I don't want to take punches at all, but I went out there and I did what I had to do, I just didn't do enough.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


POST FIGHT INTERVIEW: ALEX SAUCEDO
By G. Leon

Saucedo to return on Verdejo card June 10?

GL: Congrats on your victory over Johnny Garcia. Can you give us some thoughts on your performance? I liked the performance overall. I came out aggressively looking for good shots and good combinations and that's what happened and we saw what the outcome was. GL: You don't get paid by the round and it didn't go a full two rounds, was there anything about Garcia that surprised you? Did you expect to get him out of there so quickly? I was a little surprised by my own power actually, when I saw that I put him down with a jab and I was surprised how good I felt.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


POST FIGHT INTERVIEW: ABEL SANCHEZ
By G. Leon

GL: Congrats on a fantastic weekend. Can you give us some thoughts on GGG's performance? I don't think it was a 10, so I'm not going to give him a 10, but I would say it's about an 8. I don't think he went to the body enough, but Daniel prepared very, very well and had it in his mind that he wasn't going to be hurt, he wasn't going to be stopped and he was going to go the full twelve rounds. In a way there's a silver lining because I think those twelve rounds are going to be beneficial to Gennady, but everybody is commenting about the knockout streak which isn't an issue to us or an important thing. We just wanted to win.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


DEONTAY WILDER: I'M GOING TO UNIFY THIS DIVISION, BRING ON THE NEXT VICTIM
By G. Leon

WBC champ looking for June return

GL: Congrats on your recent win over Gerald Washington. Can you give us some thoughts on your performance? It was a fun fight, it was an exciting fight for the state of Alabama. I think Washington gained himself some fans that night. I think if I had to put this fight into a movie form and rate it, I would say it was a suspense movie because Gerald Washington seemed to have looked like he was the dominant guy until everything slowed down. We knew that he was going to be very excited and we knew he only had three or four rounds in him and we just wanted to take our time. I was calm and I was patient and then the right hand showed up and it was over with. It was perfect, I enjoyed myself and I didn't run out of energy or anything like that because I was so calm. It was a very fun fight, I talked to Washington afterwards and I told him he did a great job, to keep his head up and to keep working hard and he'll get back into the running again.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: MARSHALL KAUFFMAN
By G. Leon

GL: Can you give us some thoughts on the Travis-Mansour fight? I thought it was a great heavyweight action bout like I knew it would be. I thought it was a close fight that could have went either way, I think Travis did enough to get the decision, but it could've gone either way. The judge that had it 9-3 was blind or biased and should never work another fight. Steve Weisfeld was the most experienced judge on the panel and he had it a draw. It was a great fight, Travis had Mansour hurt and I think he should've stayed southpaw instead of switching back to orthodox, because when he went back to orthodox he was giving Mansour opportunities. Other than that it was a great fight.

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MARCH 20, 2017 
 REMILLARD RETURNS FROM PRISON STINT

Press Release: The long trip back begins April 1st for Matt Remillard, twelve years to the day from his professional debut. 
Remillard (23-1, 13 KOs), fighting out of Manchester, Connecticut, hasn't boxed for the six years, due to a five-year prison sentence. on April 1st at the Palladium in Worcester, Massachusetts, he comes back against Masachusetts lightweight Augustine "Ruthless" Mauras (6-1-3, 3 KOs) in an eight rounder.  If their tense, near volatile stare-down at a recent press conference is a true indication, Remillard vs. Mauras is not going the distance.

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MARCH 20, 2017 
 MIKEY GARCIA TO SERVE AS SHOWTIME GUEST ANALYST THIS WEEKEND

Press Release: WBC lightweight champion Mikey Garcia will join the Showtime broadcast as a guest analyst for the rematch between WBA lightweight champion Jorge Linares and Anthony Crolla on Saturday, March 25th. The broadcast is set for the unusual start time of 6 pm Eastern time. Now a three-division title holder, Garcia (36-0, 30 KOs), will join host Brian Custer and analysts Al Bernstein and Paulie Malignaggi in New York to call the Crolla vs. Linares II, which will air live from Manchester Arena in Manchester, England.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


BLACKPOOL'S BRIAN ROSE IN MUST-WIN FIGHT THIS SATURDAY

Press Release: Brian Rose admits his career is on the line in the battle of Blackpool (England) – but says he’ll prove against Jack Arnfield that he can still win major honors as they clash at the Manchester Arena on Saturday night, live on Sky Sports. Rose (29-4-1) and Arnfield (23-2) are former gym-mates who will battle at middleweight. Arnfield  has won four straight, including a big domestic win over John Ryder last September.  Rose, best known for losing a 2014 junior middleweight title fight to Demetrius Andrade knows it now or never for him at age 32. He lost to Matthew Macklin in his first big fight at Mmiddleweight last April, but he believes he’s now grown into the 160-pound division.

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MARCH 20, 2017 


SOUTH AFRICAN BOXING UPDATE

Press Release: On Friday March 31st, Oliver Tambo Hall in Cape Town, South Africa will host a pro boxing show. Local bantamweight Mzuvukile “Old Bones” Magwaca (17-0-2) will headline against Filipino import Jason Canoy (26-6-2). Magwaca has won several regional championships since turning pro in 2009 but Ganoy is likely to be his stiffest test. In a women's bantamweight bout, reigning South African champion Bukiwe Nonina (10-3-1) faces former 115-pound title holder Alesia Graf (29-5).  Nonina will certainly be in with her toughest foe since losing to current WBC world champion Catherine Phiri in November of 2014. Since then she has gone unbeaten in five straight outings, but hasn’t fought anyone near the level of Alesia Graf.

 
MARCH 19, 2017 


GOLOVKIN ESCAPES WITH WIN OVER DETERMINED JACOBS
By Scott Shaffer @Ringside

Gennady Golovkin W12 Daniel Jacobs… There was no story book ending for Daniel Jacobs, at least not tonight.  The Brooklyn cancer survivor fought bravely and effectively in New York City’s Madison Square Garden but fell just short as Gennady Golovkin barely retained the world middleweight championship by winning an exciting and very close decision.  Golovkin knocked Jacobs down in the fourth round and won a unanimous decision by scores of 115-112 (twice) and 114-113. In an indication of just how close the fight was, both HBO and Boxingtalk had the fight even after eleven rounds.  HBO gave the last round to Golovkin but Boxingtalk thought Jacobs did just enough to lift the title.  According to Compubox Punchstats, Golovkin outlanded Jacobs 231 punches to 175.  It was the first time Golovkin failed to knock out his opponent since 2008.  Jacobs, who survived spinal cancer to become one of the very best boxers in the world, thought he should have been awarded the decision, but he was gracious and classy in defeat, proving he is a champion in life, although not in the middleweight division.

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MARCH 19, 2017 


SRISAKET SOR RUNGVISAI UPSETS ROMAN GONZALEZ IN A CLASSIC
By Scott Shaffer @Ringside

Srisaket Sor Runvisai W12 Roman Gonzalez… Nicaragua’s Roman Gonzalez and Thailand’s Wisaksil Wangek a/k/a Srisaket Sor Rungvisai waged a tremendous twelve-round war at Madison Square Garden which saw the unheralded Thai make boxing history by upsetting one of the world’s best boxers via majority decision.  Gonzalez supporters cried robbery but no one can dispute this was a great fight.  Rungvisai knocked Gonzalez down in the first round and overcame a point deduction to win a tight decision by scores of 113-113 and 114-112 (twice). Punchstats favored Gonzalez, crediting him with landing more punches in ten out of twelve rounds and a surprising 441-284 overall (it certainly did not seem that one-sided in person).  The significance of this upset cannot be overstated. Gonzalez, already a a four-division champion, is a future Hall of Famer who was undefeated in 46 pro fights and rapidly approaching the undefeated records of Rocky Marciano and Floyd Mayweather. Although Rungvisai was a world title holder from 2013-2014, his career was relatively obscure and he was once so poor he had to search the garbage for his meals. His prior record of 41-4-1 was padded with quite a few no-names and Thai boxers rarely, if ever, win title fights in the United States. Rungvisai’s courageous and thrilling win against the future hall of famer is a shining example of how boxing can transform the lives of the poorest of the poor in ways that are almost unimaginable.


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MARCH 19, 2017 


THE BOXINGTALK SCOREBOARD EUROPEAN EDITION
By Scott Shaffer

Dennis Ceylan D4 Isaac Lowe … Denmark’s Dennis Ceylan (18-0-2) remains the European featherweight champion after a technical draw against against Isaac Lowe (13-0-2). Ceylan was badly cut over the left eye after an accidental head clash. source: sauerland event

Erzen Rrustemi KO2 Ricardo H. Ramirez … Heavyweight Erzen Rrustemi, who fights out of Switzerland, scored a second-round knockout of Argentina’s Ricardo Humberto Ramirez on a Sauerland Event show in Aarhus, Denmark. Ramirez started the fight on the offensive and landed some decent body shots, but  Rrustemi (12-0) suddenly scored a knockdown with a short right hand over the top. Ramirez beat the count and made it through the round. In round two, another short right hand dropped the South American again, and the end came with a third knockdown as a big right hand to the body that put Ramirez, (14-3), out of his misery. source: wbf


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MARCH 19, 2017 


CUADRAS TAKES DECISION OVER CARMONA
By Scott Shaffer @Ringside

Carlos Cuadras W10 David Carmona… Carlos Cuadras (35-1-1) defeated David Carmona (20-4-5) in an all-Mexican super flyweight bout that did not excite the Madison Square Garden crowd.  Cuadras won a ten-round decision by scores of 97-93 (twice) and 96-94.  Cuadras reigned as the WBC 115-pound champion from 2014 through 2016 until he lost his title to Roman “Chocolotito” Gonzalez in an exciting fight. This was Cuadras’ first fight since losing to Gonzalez in September, but if it was designed to whet fans’ appetites for Gonzalez-Cuadras II, the mission failed.


 
MARCH 19, 2017 


MARTIN LOOKS LIKE BLUE CHIPPER IN WIN OVER CRUZ
By Scott Shaffer @Ringside

Ryan Martin TKO8 Bryant Cruz… Tennessee’s Ryan “Blue Chip” Martin won the pay-per-view opener at New York City’s Madison Square Garden and looked good doing so. Martin (18-0) stopped New York’s Bryant “Pee Wee” Cruz (17-2) in the eighth round of a one-sided lightweight contest.  Referee Harvey Dock stepped in while Cruz was crouched in a corner absorbing heavy blows. There were no knockdowns, but Martin had dominated Cruz from the outset, so there wasn’t much of a protest over the stoppage. At 5’11” with quick hands, a Thomas Hearns-like physique and excellent boxing skills, Martin has a great chance to win a world championship in the lightweight division.

CONTINUE READING >>

 
MARCH 19, 2017 


ANDY LEE RETURNS TO THE RING WITH WIN
By Scott Shaffer @Ringside

Andy Lee W8 KeAndrae Leatherwood… Former WBO middleweight title holder Andy Lee returned from a fifteen-month layoff with an uneventful unanimous decision win over KeAndrae Leatherwood. Lee, from Limerick, Ireland, defeated Alabama’s Leatherwood by scores of 80-72, 78-74 and 79-73. There was not much action in the first half of the eight rounder as Leatherwood (19-4-1) struggled to figure out Lee’s southpaw stance and Lee (35-3-1) seemed in no hurry to push the pace. The middleweight encounter resembled the mannequin challenge more than a fight.  Lee finally dialed up his activity rate in the sixth round, putting Leatherwood on his back foot. Over the last three rounds, Lee got the better of the action, mixing in lead left hands effectively with his jab. Neither fighter was down or even hurt during the bout.
Lee had not fought since losing his WBO middleweight title to Billy Joe Saunders in December 2015.  Leatherwood had been much busier in the recent past, winning four times in 2016, although all four of his victims had losing records. It would be tempting to chalk up Lee’s performance to ring rust, but his effort tonight wasn’t all that different from his showing against Matt Korobov when he won the vacant WBO title in 2014.


CONTINUE READING >>

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