LAS VEGAS, NV (November 9, 2004) -- USBA jr. middleweight champion and top-10 contender TOKUNBO OLAJIDE and former world title challenger LARRY MARKS will duke it out for the vacant NABO and NABC 154-pound titles, in the co-feature of Melee at Mandalay Bay! "The Rematch" Winky Wright vs. Sugar Shane Mosley II, Saturday, November 20, at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino, in Las Vegas, NV, and promoted by Gary Shaw Productions, LLC. HBO will televise Wright - Mosley II live, beginning at 9:45 P.M. ET / 6:45 P.M. PT
Olajide, 27, a native of Vancouver, Canada, now residing in New York, and Gardner, 23, a native of Toronto, Canada, now residing in Brockton, MA, boast a combined record of 37-2 (24 KOs) ? an outstanding winning percentage of 95% with 65% of those victories by knockout!
Olajide, 20-1 (17 KOs), has averaged just 3.3 rounds per fight thanks to his trademark speed, mobility and power, resulting in over 85% of his victories ending with big KOs! The 1996 New York Golden Gloves champion has a resume that boasts knockout victories over an impressive roster of opponents including, Gary Jones, 19-1; Trevor Brown, 12-2; Richard Karsten, 11-0; and Leroy Brooks, 11-2. Since suffering his sole professional loss, a result from fracturing his leg from a first-round knockdown in his 2002 bout against undefeated Epifanio Mendoza, 16-0, Olajide won both his 2003 bouts since recovering, including a fourth-round TKO of Emil Baku, 22-1. In his last bout, he captured the vacant USBA jr. middleweight title, knocking out Larry Marks, 24-6 (14 KOs), in a nationally televised bout. That victory was even more impressive considering the fact that Marks had gone the 12-round championship distance against world welterweight champion Cory Spinks and former world champion Andrew Lewis. Olajide, the brother of former middleweight contender Michael Olajide, is currently world-rated No. 7 by the IBF and No. 9 by the WBC.
Gardner, 17-1 (7 KOs), a slick southpaw who fights with confidence, returns to the ring off a career-best victory over former WBO Asian-Pacific champion Kuvanych Toygonbayev, 23-2 (15 KOs), who was world-rated No. 8 in the WBC and No. 12 by the IBF when they fought in September. The only blemish on Gardner?s professional resume is a controversial four-round split decision loss to undefeated Peter Manfredo, Jr., where Gardner, in just his third fight, easily handled the more experienced Manfredo. When the decision was announced, the crowd booed lustily despite the fact Manfredo was the hometown favorite. Gardner?s style of boxing has been compared to Brockton compatriot and former world middleweight champion Marvelous Marvin Hagler. Gardner?s world ratings have advanced with the level of competition he has faced, where he is currently rated No. 13 in the IBF.
Tickets for this exciting evening of boxing are priced at $600, $400, $200, $100 and $50, and are on sale at the Mandalay Bay Box Office and all TicketMaster outlets. To order tickets by phone, call (702) 632-7580