|BLANEY HOPES FOR TOUGH TEST|
|FLAME-HAIRED super-middleweight prospect Chris Blaney is hoping for a tough examination as he steps up to six rounds on Frank Warren’s BT Sport televised ‘City of Champions’ bill this weekend.
The Ricky Hatton-trained Irishman squares off with Plymouth’s Christian Hoskin Gomez in Leicester on Saturday night (April 22).
Hoskin Gomez may be a journeyman but he’s certainly a come forward fighter who has upset the odds in the past.
“He’s a bit like Mark Till, who I beat last year,” Blaney said. “He’ll come to fight and at least he’s not someone there to take a beating.
“I’m moving up to six rounds on this show and that should suit me better. Four rounds is a bit cagey and anything can happen, especially if you get hit with a lucky shot.
“I’m hoping to impress and hopefully I can get on a few more Frank Warren shows in the future.”
Blaney has had three of his five professional outings back home in Ireland and he’s keen to return to the Emerald Isle with a title around his waist later this year.
“I’ve got my eye on the Celtic title,” Blaney, 25, revealed. “I believe it’s over eight rounds and I think it’s something I’ll be ready for in a couple of fights.
“After that? Who knows. I’m keeping my feet on the ground, but I won a lot of titles in the amateurs and, like every boxer, I want as many as I can get as a pro.”
NEW YORK, NY (April 18, 2017) – FITE TV will stream the April 28th heavyweight clash between a pair of past world title contenders, Kubrat “The Cobra” Pulev and Kevin “Kingpin” Johnson, live on pay per view, starting at 2 p.m. ET /11 a.m. PT, from Arena Armeec in Sofia, Bulgaria. Encore presentations will also be available to watch.
FITE TV is a Combat Sports Network that features boxing, MMA and wrestling programming. FITE gives viewers the choice to watch the program on line at www.FITE.tv, on their mobile device or on their WiFi connected television using the FITE app. The FITE app can be downloaded for free at Google Play or the iTunes app stores.
Boxing fans may watch the entire card, headlined by the Pulev-Johnson 12-round World Boxing Association (WBA) heavyweight title fight, simply by downloading the FITE app and then cast the fight to the big screen by using the instant stream-to-TV function. The FITE app works with any Wi-Fi connected television around the world, iOS and Android devices, as well as streaming devices such as Roku, Chromecast and more. Fans may also watch the fights live on the FITE website at www.fite.tv from any computer.
“Pulev versus Johnson is another fine boxing event that FITE is now making available to our North American fan base,” FITE COO Michael Weber said. “FITE continues to grow by leaps and bounds and we are very proud of the growth of world class boxing events to complement our current line-up of MMA and wrestling events.”
The 6′ 4 ½ Pulev, fighting at home in Sofia, Bulgaria, captured the vacant WBA Inter-Continental heavyweight title in his last fight this past December, in which former world champion Samuel Peters (36-5) retired after the third round.
Last May, Pulev won a 12-round split decision over Dereck Chisora (25-5) to capture the European heavyweight championship. The 35-year-old Pulev has won four in a row since he suffered the only loss of his professional career, by way of a fifth-round knockout in 2014, to then-International Boxing Federation (IBF) heavyweight world champion Wladimir Klitschko (62-3).
Pulev was a celebrated amateur boxer who represented Bulgaria at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing, China. Currently rated No. 9 in the world by the WBA, Pulev can position himself for another world title shot with an impressive victory over Johnson, the battle-tested veteran fighting out of Lawrenceville, Georgia, USA.
“My number one goal is to fight for the World title and on April 28,” Pulev commented, “I will take another step towards achieving this goal. I’m already training hard to prove I am worthy to fight again for the heavyweight crown.
“Johnson is a tough opponent. You must only look at his resume to tell this will be a real challenge. He has shared the ring with many World class fighters like Vitali Klitschko and Anthony Joshua. I know I will need to be at my best to beat him, but with the help of my coach Ulli Wegner and the support of the Bulgarian people, I’m confident my hand will be raised, and we will be able to celebrate another great night for Bulgarian boxing and another step towards me fulfilling my dream of becoming the Heavyweight Champion of the World.’
Johnson, 37, has served as a dangerous “gatekeeper” in the heavyweight division during his 14-year professional career. He’s fought reigning World Boxing Council (WBC) heavyweight champion Anthony Joshua – the only fighter to stop Johnson – former unified world heavyweight titlist Tyson Fury, former world title challenger Manuel Charr and current European champion Christian Hammer.
Johnson’s most notable wins have been against world title challengers Bruce Seldon (TKO5), Alex Leapai (TKO9) and Albert Sosnowski (SDEC3 in Prizefighter Tournament).
In 2009, Johnson lost his lone world title fight by unanimous decision to undefeated WBC champion Vitali Klitschko, extending him the full 12-rounds.
On Easter Sunday, the city of Newburgh, recreation department, along with Leonard Lee and his team “Newburgh Hook Elite”. With the participation of gyms, from far away as Pennsylvania took on visiting Irish fighters, out of the “Ernie Boxing Gym”. It was an event, to help raise awareness for an ongoing “Gloves up Guns Down” campaign and its efforts towards ending senseless street violence among our youth.
The event itself, consisted of eleven bouts and while the city recreation center, might not have been filled to capacity, it didn’t deter the fighters from performing at their best. Each fighter who stepped into the ring, gave a championship effort. Those who won, accepted their belts with pride and those who didn’t accepted the judges decisions with dignity. While the overall goal, to have a successful event was accomplished, the time Newburgh Hook Elite and Ernie Boxing Gym, spent together prior, is where the real success happened.
The teams would workout together, go to restaurants and even fishing. That time, allowed the fighters to forge respect for one another, as was evident during the event. When the fighters were introduced and winner announced, regardless of who or what gym they fought out of. The kids applauded with equal enthusiasm, something many adult’s in the crowd failed to do.
The event provided these kids with an education, not the kind read in books, but life experience. With the increased negativity, spread across the news, especially social media, the education helped some of these kids understand, no matter where you come from, we are all not that much different. A lesson learned like that, can carry over into adulthood. On the way there, help these kids make informed decisions, when it comes to how they conduct themselves and attitude towards others.
In an era where our youth, are lacking an abundance of adult role models, we see an increased lack of self respect and ability to respect others. If the adults of our society, continue to fail our youth, events like these are becoming pivotal for our communities. We tend to sell our youth short, by providing them an outlet to succeed, more often than not, they will rise to the occasion, not only for themselves but others.
A history of champions and legends, have been created on such opportunities. In creating these opportunities, we lay a foundation for success. We provide continuous goals, once set, they will take it upon themselves, to strive towards succeeding. The efforts of Leonard Lee, Hook Elite boxing, Ernie boxing and other gyms that participated Sunday, helped lay at least some of that foundation. Hopefully more people in our communities, take notice and follow suit in one form or another.
It’s too soon for us to know, exactly how long the young men and ladies from Sunday, will carry their new found lessons with them. At minimum, they walked away feeling a little bit better about themselves, even if for a short time.The memory of stepping up, performing like a champion and what it felt like will last forever.
TONY BELLEW NAMED- WHAT? WHY? HOW?
By: Daxx Khan – BillyCBoxing.com
Tony Bellew is a HUGE STAR in the world of boxing, the masses demand to see him in action. He is ready to face anyone and will conquer everyone that signs the contract. In short BOXING HAS BEEN PUT ON NOTICE!!
OK Maybe not but, after his win over David Haye March 4th at least Bellew seems to think so, he has even called out WBC heavyweight champion Deontay Wilder. His recent surge of success and unknown popularity, has prompted Bellew to vacate his cruiserweight world title, while pondering his next career step. (I say unknown because until today, I was not aware Bellew has so many opportunities he can vacate a world title)
The WBC is either putting a lot of faith into Bellew OR letting him commit career suicide on his own, they released the following statement on Bellew and the WBC cruiserweight title today March 28th, 2017.
Official WBC Statement pertaining to Tony Bellew and the WBC Cruiserweight title.
Tony Bellew conquered the WBC vacant cruiserweight championship on May 29, 2016 by knocking out number 1 contender Ilunga Makabu in three rounds in Liverpool, United Kingdom.
Mandatory contender Mairis Briedis reached a step aside agreement with Bellew to allow him a voluntary defense vs. B. J. Flores on October 15, 2016.
During the 54th WBC Annual Convention in Hollywood, Florida, Tony Bellew requested special permission on the rule 3.87 to participate in a WBC Special Event in the heavyweight division, which the WBC unanimously voted in favor and ordered an interim championship fight between Mairis Briedis and Marco Huck, as well as a final elimination bout between Kudryashov and Durodola.
Our proud champion knocked out highly regarded heavyweight David Haye on March 4, 2017. Tony Bellew has become a major attraction in the heavyweight division and is at this moment uncertain of his next steps following his life changing victory.
Tony Bellew has expressed his absolute honor and pride to be the WBC cruiserweight champion of the world and has represented the WBC in the best way possible during his reigning as a champion.
This scenario might keep him from defending his cruiserweight title in some time, reason for which the WBC Board of Governors unanimously voted to designate Anthony Bellew as Emeritus Champion of the World, which grants him the right to fight for the cruiserweight championship at any given time with full support from the WBC while maintaining his rights as world champion.
The Emeritus Champion designation is a privilege, which has been successfully used by some of the great champions of the history of our organization including Vitali Klitschko, Floyd Mayweather, Bernard Hopkins, Erik Morales and other greats.
The WBC hereby confirms that the fight between Mairis Briedis and Marco Huck that will take place this coming April 1st in Germany, will be for the WBC cruiserweight championship of the world and the winner will abide by the ruling of the WBC Board regarding the mandatory defenses.
ONE QUESTION- While Tony has always been a guy who gives it his all, been cheated on a few close decisions and leaves it all behind in bouts. At what point in time has he done anything to justify the same courtesy as Vitali Klitschko, Floyd Mayweather, Bernard Hopkins or Erik Morales? None were given this luxury until they accomplished near “Hall of Fame Status”.
I guess there is only one answer. As we say on Social Media #Boxing.
Week Seven of the “Daily News Golden Gloves Tournament” from Newburgh NY- Highlights and results
By: Daxx Khan – RingSide – March 24, 2017
On Wednesday night March 22nd, week seven of the “New York Daily News Golden Gloves” took place at upstate New York’s “Newburgh Free Academy”. Through the efforts of Leonard Lee, head of “Newburgh Hook Elite Boxing” and matchmaker Diana Rodriguez, it would be the first time a tournament bracket would be held at the location.
Throughout its ninety years of existence, “New York Daily News Golden Gloves” has given boxing fans their first glimpse at dozens of future world champions. Even the sports, all time “Pound for Pound” King, “Sugar” Ray Robinson began his journey winning the gloves. When you mention “East Coast Amateur Boxing Tournament’s”, nothing holds prestige in the hearts of fans and fighters like “New York Daily News Golden Gloves”.
In attendance to lend their support, were former world champions, Iran “The Blade” Barkley, Alicia “Slick” Ashley and “Downtown” Leona Brown”. Also in attendance, was former multi-time New York Daily News Golden Gloves winner and director Brian Adams.
Opening the event, would be a series of 165lb Female, Semi-Final Bouts.
Rachele Beckley out of the “Main Street Boxing Club”, used her combination punching to score a decision over hard hitting Leah Cooper of “Gold Folk Boxing”.
Krystal Dixon scored the first of two wins, for “Champs Boxing Club”, outpointing Marine Beauchamp of “Worldwide Boxing”.
114lb Male Novice semi-final bracket.
Gerardo Vazquez of “Rustams Boxing Club”, defeated Basel Baker of “John’s Gym”.
Matthew Sanchez of “Worldwide Boxing Club”, scored the only stoppage of the event, halting Joseph Roman in the second round.
132lb Male Novice semi-final bracket.
Ricardo Rodriguez scored the first of two wins for “Gleason’s Gym”, claiming a decision over Taqee McDaniel of “Eastern Queens Boxing”.
In a bout between two fighters, out of the same boxing club, Ronny Reyes defeated Musa Cham, both boxers represented “Morris Park Boxing”.
James Lluveres of “Champs Boxing Club”, scored the gyms second win of the event, winning a decision over James Belizaire of “Eye of the Tiger Boxing”.
Female 125lb Semi-Final
Andrea Tosto, scored the evenings second win for “Gleason’s Gym”, with a close decision over Samantha Mang of “Work Train Fight”.
In my opinion, the most complete fighter on card in terms of all-around boxing ability, was Trudy Li out of the “Sweatbox Boxing Club”. Over three rounds, En-route to winning a decision over Elise Seignolle out of “NYAC”, Li demonstrated ring generalship and an overall boxing IQ far beyond any other fighter of the night.
Male 201+ Open semi-finals.
Boris Zarate of “Freeport PAL” and Nicolas Rubens of “Starrett City Boxing Club”, provided the cards most action-packed bout. It was all about, landing power punches from the start. In the end, Boris Zarate was awarded a close decision, the contest could have gone in either direction, with no argument from observers.
The events final contest, took place between local Newburgh resident, Marquise Williams out of “Newburgh Hook Elite” and Matthew Tinker of “NYAC”. The judges scored it for Williams, who will have his hands full should he face Boris Zarate in the next round.
After a quality show and turnout from local fans, hopefully more events will take place for young fighters in and around the Newburgh Area. The efforts of Leonard Lee and team from “Newburgh Hook Elite Boxing”, in my opinion proved they are serious about bringing boxing to their local area on a regular basis.
There is already an event scheduled in April, when Lee and his team from “Newburgh Hook Elite”, take on a visiting team from “Ireland”. It will be billed as “USA vs. Ireland”, taking place as part of an ever growing “Put down the guns and pick up the gloves” campaign.
GOLOVKIN VS JACOBS FINAL THOUGHTS- A Quality fight that viewers KO’d!
By: Daxx Khan – March 20, 2017
On Saturday night, prior to Gennady “GGG” Golovkin and Daniel Jacobs stepping into the ring, the outcome was already solidified in fans minds “Someone was getting knocked out and in sensational fashion”. The reasons on, who and why when asked, always returned the same responses. Those who chose GGG stated “Jacobs has been stopped before, Pirog stopped him, GGG has twice the power and skill. He was down against light punching Sergio Mora, no way he last twelve round against Golovkin”.
The Jacobs supporters stated “GGG looked beatable against Kell Brook, if a blown-up welterweight had success, Jacobs combination of power, size and age advantage will be too much for GGG. This is the perfect time to take advantage of a declining champion”.
Instead of a brutal KO win for either fighter, we were given a closely contested, high quality bout. One where both fighters used their minds and physical skillset. In doing so, it seems the majority, who didn’t witness the knockout they craved are disappointed.
Instead of GGG absorbing punches willingly, a strategy he has implored in past bouts, one that opens his opponent up for counter shots. The shots that when he lands, usually ends fights. He rolled with punches, used a high guard, made sure he didn’t risk over extending himself.
He did this because, he knew Jacobs was bigger, allowing him to absorb punches better than other opponents. He knew the longer reach of Jacobs, would make it difficult to get in close and work the body without paying a heavy price. Instead he chose to pick his shots, not become over anxious, risk being countered himself. He waited to deliver his power shots when he knew the target was in range.
As for Jacobs, he knew GGG was not Peter Quillin, trying to jump all over him, meant risk being countered. One is all a guy like GGG needs to end the night. A knockdown in round four, reminded him just how quick it could end. He knew GGG had issues with guys who move in the past, his reach and footwork was key.
The predictions and expectations prior to fight time were credible. Considering the history of each fighter, in terms of finishing opponents in dynamic fashion. We were not in the ring, we were not taking the punches and despite what was said during the buildup, both fighters also knew something else. They knew the counter points of those predictions.
It’s true, GGG looked slow against Brook. With Brook, having naturally faster hands and feet, GGG at any time in his career would have looked slower. The size difference was also exaggerated, Brook a very large welterweight, fought nine times as a junior middleweight and high as middleweight prior to the GGG bout. Also, GGG, had prepared for another opponent, Brook was a replacement opponent.
It’s also true, Daniel Jacobs was stopped by Dmitry Pirog. He was also winning, on all three scorecards when stoppage occurred. That was in 2010, this is 2017, a whole lifetime in boxing years. Since Jacobs, continuously raised his level of competition in each bout, stopping everyone in his path. A KO loss, doesn’t always mean a fighter has a suspect chin. If it did, Henry Armstrong, who lost his pro debut by stoppage, would have never went 180 more bouts, losing just one more by stoppage. Claiming world titles, in three divisions at the same time, when there were only eight divisions and one title in each.
Team Jacobs and team Golovkin took those into consideration going in. Each fighter knew what the public expected, a war with someone looking up towards the lights when it ended. The fact, each fighter did what was needed, to avoid that ending, without sacrificing their integrity inside the ring as a fighter. Is something only, the absolute elite are capable of.
If anyone who watched, cannot understand, more importantly appreciate what, Gennady Golovkin and Daniel Jacobs did Saturday night, regardless of who won is not a boxing fan. They are a “Fight Fan”, fight fans are good for business, they strip boxing of its integrity while keeping the sport in business. They do it simply because all they understand are knockouts and their rationalization on who should win comes from the internet. This continued trend will soon leave promoters and fighters with little choice, if money is to be made. Give the masses their basic entertainment, let them gorge in subpar quality. Just keep them happy, it’s not as if they know the difference nor do they care about quality.
There have been empires, who collapsed for those same reasons, instead of pleasing the social media trolls now for PPV buys, someone should Google how that ended. Since the UFC stealing boxings thunder daily isn’t enough.
LEMIEUX STOPS STEVENS COLD! Gamboa lowers his stock on HBO
By: Daxx Khan – March 12, 2017
Saturday night at the Turning Stone Casino, former IBF middleweight title holder David Lemieux took on former world title challenger Curtis Stevens in the headliner of an HBO broadcast. This was an important fight for both men, for Stevens it would decide if he stays a relevant name or becomes an “Opponent” caliber fighter. The career of Stevens has always been a rough road, whenever he has momentum, he falls short in that step-up fight which could bring his career to the next level. While Stevens gives it his all in every fight, when he loses, he loses big. In the case of Lemieux, he was dominated by Gennady Golovkin to such an extent, fans have almost forgotten he is a former world champion, capable of stepping in with just about anyone from 160-168lbs in boxing today.
In the first round, Lemieux hurt Stevens early keeping him on the backfoot. In the second Lemieux slowed a bit, Stevens landed some hard shots of his own and seemed to hurt Lemieux to the body towards rounds end.
When back in the corners, Lemieux’s trainer Marc Ramsey stated “Relax and wait for the opening”, he did just that and stopped Curtis Stevens cold at 1:59 of the third round. It was the best KO of the last year without question in my opinion. They would take Curtis Stevens out of the ring by stretcher and to a local hospital.
In his post-fight interview, David Lemieux was polite, wished Stevens well and stated he would like to fight Billy Joe Saunders next if possible. Unlike Yuriorkis Gamboa, David Lemieux is without question still a relevant fighter in his division, in fact outside of Gennady Golovkin and Danny Jacobs he might be the best middleweight in boxing today.
The co-feature between former two division champion Yuriorkis Gamboa and rugged Nicaraguan Rene Alvarado had a similar scenario, at least for Gamboa. A once “Pound for Pound” prospect, Gamboa has looked ordinary at best since being stopped by Terence Crawford in 2014. The fact, he has faced B level opponents, struggling against one, Hylon Williams Jr in the same venue just over a year ago, has done nothing to help erase a growing “Over rated” stigma that has become attached since loss against Crawford.
It was questionable on how Gamboa, would perform even before the fight began, rehydrating 14lbs in 24 hours. He weighed officially 131lbs yet entered at 145lbs virtually a welterweight. His performance showed it, he looked mediocre, his pace was slow, he threw single punches and was dropped in the final round for an eight count. As for Rene Alvarado, he was fighting a welterweight and gave his best. In the end judges seen it 97-93 and 97-92 twice for Yuriorkis Gamboa who improved to 26-1 (17). In the loss, Rene Alvarado now stands at 24-8 (16).
In my opinion it’s safe to say Yuriorkis Gamboa is done as a top-rated fighter, he will continue to be in these type bouts, doing just enough to get by. Contrary to what the HBO announce team said he will not drop down in weight and be a threat to Vasyl Lomachenko.
In Undercard action-
Super Lightweight- Yves Ulysse Jr 12-0 (8) Zachary Ochoa 16-0 (7)
vacant NABF Junior super lightweight title
Featherweight- Diego De La Hoya 17-0 (9) def. Roberto Pucheta 10-10-1 (6) UD 8.
Super Middleweight- D’Mitrius Ballard 16-0 (12) def. Zoltan Sera 28-12(19) via TKO 4.
Light Heavyweight- Todd Unthank May 10-0-1 (4) draw. Quinton Rankin 12-3-2 (9) D6.
Lightweight- Damon Allen 11-0-1 (5) def. Adam Mate 24-11 (17) via TKO 2.
Super Welterweight- Alex Rincon 1-0 (1) def. Shaun Lee Henson 2-4 (2) via TKO 2.
Boxing Loses a Legend -Hall of Fame Trainer and Manager Lou Duva passes at age 94
By: Daxx Khan – March 9, 2017
It was with deep sorrow to hear another one of boxing’s greats, Hall of Famer Lou Duva passed away March 8th at age 94. Starting in 1963, after Joey Giardiello his first champion defeated Dick Tiger for the middleweight title, Duva worked almost four decades, guiding not only some of the modern eras but boxings all-time greats.
As a trainer, Lou worked with world champions and title challengers, Pernell Whitaker, Evander Holyfield, Mark Breland, Vinny Pazienza, Meldrick Taylor, Jose Luis Lopez, Michael Moorer, Alex Arthur, Tyrell Biggs and Andrew Golota. As a Manager, Duva guided Johnny Bumphus, Rocky Lockridge, Shaun George and multi-division title holder Zab Judah towards success.
He was more than one of boxing’s most successful trainers and managers, he was one of its larger than life figures. I believe Lou Duva, might be the only manager and trainer whose own memorable moments, equal that of his fighters.
Who could ever forget the time, Lou went at it with Roger Mayweather after his win over Vinny Pazienza? The referee might have turned a blind eye to Mayweather hitting Pazienza late, that didn’t mean Lou was letting it go. It might have temporarily cost him his manager’s license and $750 dollars but he put boxing on notice. “Lou Duva doesn’t take guff from anyone”.
It wasn’t just his fighter’s opponents, promoters, trainers and referees were also confronted if they crossed Duva or his fighters. When Mike Tyson stopped Lou’s fighter Tyrell Biggs, Tysons promoter Don King mocked Biggs and Duva from ringside. His comments infuriated Lou, he went after King, looking to dish out his own punishment, security guards would stop him just feet before King was in reach.
The most famous or perhaps infamous public moment, involving Duva came on July 11th 1996, that was the night Andrew Golota and Riddick Bowe met for the first time. When Golota was disqualified for low blows, a mini-riot ensued. The commotion caused his defibrillator to go off, he was taken from the ring on a stretcher, in what could be best described as a “Micky Goldmill” moment. It was a real life Rocky 3 situation.
Those were just a few of many, Lou Duva moments. Was he a bit extreme? At times, yes, no debating that fact, one thing was for certain though. If you were with Lou Duva, he had your back, even if it meant taking on all comers.
While he was a larger than life figure, he was also that guy we seen a little of ourselves in, Duva had that “Fella from the Neighborhood” persona we could relate to. The fact we seen him down, yet refuse to stay down on multiple occasions, made him all the more likable. Even during his worst moments.
In his 94 years, Lou Duva lived a long full life. During his years in the sport, we watched Lou call it as he seen it. There were many times, when Lou should have thought things through before reacting. Yet he was the type guy who, always did what he felt was right “Now” and always with the best interest of his fighters. Whatever consequences might follow, could be dealt with later. That’s what separated him from everyone else in the business. It’s what made Lou Duva one of boxings greats.
In an era, where people seem more worried about “Consequences” then what’s right, we could use a few dozen more, Lou Duva types in boxing today. If anything, just to point fingers when the “Powers that be” fail at doing their job. Let’s hope now, he can sit with other past greats of the sport, look down and say “They are doing it right”. He did his part in helping lay the foundation, it’s up to the new generation to capitalize and do him proud.