SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING begins its 20th year with a world championship doubleheader Saturday, Jan. 7 (9 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the west coast). Hometown favorite and one of the world’s best pound-for-pound boxers, undisputed welterweight champion Zab “Super” Judah, will put all his belts on the line against WBC No. 1 contender Carlos Baldomir in the main event at The Theater At Madison Square Garden. In the SHOWTIME co-feature, WBC/WBA champion Jean-Marc Mormeck faces IBF champion O’Neil Bell for the undisputed world cruiserweight championship. The 12-round world title fights are promoted by Don King Productions.
ZAB “SUPER” JUDAH (34-2, 1 NC, 25 KOs)
“I am not playing anymore. I am focused and my mind is right. I know where I want to go. I am not looking past anybody. You have to give Baldomir his due. He did what he had to and worked his way to get to No. 1. But it is time to hurt and destroy.
“To be fighting on SHOWTIME at Madison Square Garden is really big for me. It is big for New York and for all of boxing. This is going to be a great fight and I look forward to putting on a great show.
“No boxer in any division will do what I want to do in 2006 if I get the opportunity. I am calling out everybody. This is going to be a beautiful year.’’
CARLOS BALDOMIR (41-9-6, 12 KOs)
“Everything is perfect. I feel very comfortable and am not nervous at all. I am confident that I will upset Judah and send all his fans home unhappy. In my heart, I already feel like the new champion.
“This is my first world title fight. I have waited a long, long time for it. It wouldn’t matter who I was fighting, I would still be extremely excited. There is going to be a big surprise on Saturday night.
JEAN-MARC MORMECK (31-2, 21 KOs)
“I want to thank Don King, SHOWTIME, everyone involved, for making this fight possible. I am proud to be able to fight at Madison Square Garden.
“Bell has been doing a lot of talking, but he is the one that has to justify himself (his credentials) – not me. I do not have to justify a thing. Bell has never fought anyone like me.
“I am a fighter. I live to fight. I am really looking forward to Saturday and proving to everybody who the best cruiserweight in the world is.”
O’NEIL BELL (25-1-1, 23 KOs)
“I am the best kept secret in the cruiserweight division, but that will change after I win Saturday night. It is an honor for me to be fighting for the undisputed cruiserweight title. I am ready for a top performance.
“What you have seen in my last couple fights was me at only 80 percent. I had things going on outside the ring. I was changing up my boxing style a little. I was in transition.
“But there will be no excuses after I fight Mormeck. If you compare his resume to mine, or compare our accomplishments, you will see I have fought and defeated much tougher fighters throughout my career.’’