Chicago native, Miami based welterweight David Estrada, 17-1 (8KO's) heads to the Mohegan Sun Casino in Uncasville, Conn., on Friday, January 21st for a twelve round showdown with Chris "The Mechanic" Smith, 19-0-1 (12KO's) of Queens, New York, broadcast live as part of the increasingly popular "ShoBox--The New Generation" live professional boxing series headlining a card promoted by DiBella Entertainment.
SHOWTIME will televise at 11 p.m. ET/PT (tape delayed on west coast). The telecast represents the 55th in the popular "ShoBox" series, which debuted on SHOWTIME in July 2001.
The scheduled twelve round bout will be for the IBF # 2 ranking. Estrada currently holds the United Stated Boxing Association Welterweight Title and is ranked # 7 by the International Boxing Federation, its parent company. Smith currently is ranked # 14 by the IBF and # 11 by the World Boxing Organization and holder of the North American Boxing Association welterweight belt.
Since losing a unanimous decision to Ishe Smith on July 31, 2003 in his ShoBox debut, his only loss as a professional, Estrada has won two in a row, knocking out Nelson Manchego this past May and winning a twelve round unanimous decision over highly regarded and previously undefeated Nurhan Suleymanoglu on July 15, 2004, in a bout seen on the ShoBox series, winning in spectacular fashion by taking the last ten rounds on the scorecards.
Speaking after a sparring session at the South Florida Boxing Gym under the watchful eye of Hall of Fame trainer, Angelo Dundee, the modest Estrada stated, "This is a great opportunity for me. Smith is undefeated and very highly thought of in boxing circles. A win over him shoots me up in the rankings at welterweight and that's what my career needs right now."
Although squarely focused on the task at hand, beating Smith, Estrada spoke of the welterweight division, "A lot of things are going to shake out in the next couple of months with Spinks and Judah fighting again in February. Hopefully, if I beat Smith I can get a title shot in the near future."
Of his boxing career so far, the 25 year old Estrada stated, "The loss to Ishe Smith was a bit of a setback but the win over Suleymanoglu got me back on track. He was the favorite and it was supposed to be his night but I went in there and took care of business much like my plan is for this fight against Chris Smith. The fight is close to New York City where he's from and he's never lost like Nurhan but if I take care of business in the ring it won't matter how many fans are there for him."
Speaking of growing up in Chicago, David said "there's a lot of good fighters in Chicago, guys like David Diaz, Fres Oquendo, Freddie Cuevas, Angel Hernandez--its great to see a lot of fighters in Chicago having success."
Finally, when discussing other highly ranked welterweights and prospective future opponents, Estrada said, "I'm confident in my abilities that I can beat anyone at 147, I just need to get in the ring with them."