LOS ANGELES – December 27 Some fighters are late bloomers, plugging away on undercards, learning their trade, just waiting for the right opportunity to shine. In the last two years, the prime example of this phenomenon was middleweight David Lopez, who rose from obscurity to become one of the most feared fighters in the 160-pound division.
On Thursday, January 6, at the Desert Diamond Casino in Tucson, Arizona,
Golden Boy Promotions is pleased to present Lopez’s first defense of the IBA middleweight title when he squares off against knockout machine Fulgencio Zuniga in the 2005 premiere of HBO Latino’s “Oscar De La Hoya Presents Boxeo De Oro”, now in its third year of bringing boxing’s best to a nationwide television audience.
In the televised co-feature, super bantamweight Abner Mares, a 2004 Mexican Olympian, will be making his highly anticipated professional debut when he battles Puerto Rico’s Luis Malave in a six round contest.
The HBO Latino telecast, will be the first ever from the Desert Diamond Casino, begins at 10pm ET / PT.
Nogales, Mexico’s David Lopez (23-12, 14 KOs) came up the hard way, battling anyone and everyone in the fight game since turning pro at the age of 17 in 1995. But even though he had his ups and downs career wise, once he settled in at 160 pounds in 2003, boxing insiders started to take a long look at Lopez, and he responded in kind, stopping Fernando Zuniga in six rounds to take the IBA Americas title, and following that up by handing former world champion Lonnie Bradley and rising prospect Jerson Ravelo their first losses, both by knockout. ! In his l ast bout, Lopez added another belt to his trophy case when he decisioned rugged veteran Kirino Garcia over 12 rounds to win the IBA middleweight crown – this despite fighting with only one hand for seven rounds due to injury.
Lopez’s opponent, Fulgencio Zuniga (16-1, 15 KOs) is the type of fighter no one wants to face, mainly because of his knockout ratio. A native of Padilla, Colombia, Zuniga is best remembered for his loss in a close decision to world champion Daniel Santos in 2003.
Born in Jalisco, Mexico, Abner Mares began boxing at the age of seven, and soon made his mark on the amateur ranks, where he compiled an mazing record of 112-8 with 84 KOs. Among his amateur accomplishments were PAL, Silver Gloves, Junior Olympics, Olympic Festival, Central American, European Games and Under-17 World Championship titles. In the 2004 Athens Games, Mares, who now makes his home in California, lost a highly controversial decision to Hungary’s Zsolt Bedak, a decision that provoked outrage in boxing circles. Nevertheless, Mares persevered and now he’s ready to make his mark on the professional game.
“In the amateurs my goal was just to go to the Olympics, I wasn’t thinking of the medal until I got there,” said Mares. “But now that I’m going to the pros, I want to go into a world championship fight.”
His first step is his January 6 battle against Santa Isabel, Puerto Rico’s heavy handed Luis Maleve (8-5, 6 KO).
The hard-hitting four-bout undercard will feature the best of the local Arizona prospects, including five unbeaten fighters and veteran Norberto Bravo (20-8 12 KOs)
In a four round junior middleweight battle, Phoenix’ Thomas Padron (1-0-1, 1 KO) will take on Tijuana's 2004 Mexican Olympian, Alfredo Angulo, a highly regarded amateur making his pro debut. Olympian
Another debuting fighter, Israel Alonzo, will throw hands with 1-0 Juan Garcia in a four round clash between Phoenix featherweights. Also battling for local bragging rights will be junior welterweights Jose Montoya (4-0) and Arturo Brambila (6-3), who will fight in a bout scheduled for six rounds.
Rounding out the Phoenix contingent on the card is heavyweight Jermaine Woods (8-1-1, 5 KOs), a fighter who has been described by some in the media as “the next Mike Tyson” and who will try to dismantle power punching Augustine Trujillo (4-1, 3 KOs) of Las Vegas in a four rounder.
The doors for this spectacular event open at 5:00pm
Location: Diamond Entertainm! ent Cent er - Desert Diamond Casino I-19 location.
Reserved table seating is $25.00, $50.00, $60.00, $75.00 and $100.00 in advance and $30.00, $55.00, $65.00, and $105.00 on the day of the show.
Tickets on sale now at the Desert Diamond Casino Box Office at the I-19 location, or call the Box Office at: (520) 393-2799
For more information on Golden Boy Promotions, please visit our website at www.goldenboypromotions.com