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Sergio Martinez: “This Year I Will Be P4P Best”

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Sergio MartinezMcEwan, Dzinzi, Martinez and Lee, from left to right, in NYC. (photo by the estimable Teddy Blackburn)

NEW YORK, NY (Feb 9, 2011) – The “Diamond Elite” WBC Middleweight Diamond Championship showdown between Sergio Martinez and Sergiy Dzinziruk was formally announced today at a kick off press conference Wednesday afternoon from the BB King Blues Club in Times Square. Also in attendance were Andy Lee and Craig McEwan who will battle in a “Celtic War” in the HBO-televised undercard. All four fighters and representatives from their respective camps were in attendance at today’s event.

“Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk” will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions and Banner Promotions. Lee vs. McEwan will be presented by DiBella Entertainment in association with Golden Boy Promotions. Both bouts will be broadcast live on HBO’s World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30pm ET / 7:30pm PT.

Tickets for “Diamond Elite: Martinez vs. Dzinziruk,” are priced at $450, $250, $125, $75, and $50 and are on sale through the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office. Tickets can be purchased online at http://www.mgmatfoxwoods.com/, by calling the MGM Grand at Foxwoods at 1-866-646-0609, or in person at the MGM Grand at Foxwoods box office.

Below are quotes from the participants:


Sergio Martinez
: I know Dzinziruk is the best champion at 154-lbs. and he will make for a great fight. This year will be the year that I become the best pound-for-pound fighter in the world. I am training very hard to make sure that this is the best fight to bring to the fans.

Sergiy Dzinziruk
: I am very happy to be here. I want to thank everyone who worked on my behalf to make this fight happen. I am training very hard to make this opportunity and I want to make the most of it in the ring.

Andy Lee: Unfortunately, the only time most people have seen me fight was when I lost, because it was on ESPN. I don’t intend on letting that happen again. Now we’re on HBO, which has always been our team’s goal. I want to thank my new promoter, Lou DiBella, for this opportunity.

Craig McEwan
: I’ve known Andy for a long time, dating back to the amateurs. I always thought if we would fight again it would be for a championship. I guess I will have to get through him to get my shot at a championship.

Lou DiBella, promoter of Martinez and Lee
: When this fight was first brought to me, I said no. Sergio Martinez said yes. Sergio Martinez has all the qualities of a star and wants only the best fights. This is a great fight for boxing because not only are Martinez and Dzinziruk great fighters, they are entertainers. Boxing is about entertainment and these guys bring it. The MGM Grand Arena at Foxwoods is already over half sold out for this event. Get your tickets for what will be a great night for the sport of boxing.

Sampson Lewkowicz, advisor to Martinez
: The press is wrong for trying to be a matchmaker. Everyone wants to be matchmaker, but HBO got it right. This is the best fight that can be made at this time. Thanks also to the WBC for lending their support to a tremendous fight like this.

Gabriel Sarmiento, trainer of Martinez
: This is a very good challenge for Sergio Martinez. Sergio is training very hard and you will see it on March 12.

Gary Shaw, co-promoter of Dzinziruk
: Boxing is all about the best fighting the best. No one wants to see easy fights. When great fighters fight great fighters, that is when boxing is at its best. Everyone in Europe knows about Sergiy Dzinziruk, and after March 12 everyone [in America] will know about him as well. Sergiy Dzinziruk will be the next middleweight champion of the world.

Artie Pelullo, co-promoter of Dzinziruk
: I think that this is going to be a great fight. Martinez and Dzinziruk are two of the best fighters in the world fighting at the prime of their lives.

Emanuel Steward, trainer of Lee
: We were supposed to fight Sergio Martinez, so we want an impressive win and we want Andy to fight Sergio next. We know the importance of winning impressively. I am training Andy to score a knockout in this fight.

Monica Sears, Director of Communications & Events at Golden Boy Promotions, McEwan’s promoter
: We are very excited about this opportunity. It is a great chance for Craig on the big stage. I want to thank everyone involved for putting together this event. It is sure to be a great night.

Mauricio Sulaiman, Executive Director of the WBC
: Sergio Martinez is a great champion and a great ambassador for the sport of boxing. Sergiy Dzinziruk has been a champion for many years. Both fighters have great credentials, making this fight worthy of the Diamond Championship.

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2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura

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The WBC World Super Featherweight title bout between Francisco Vargas and Takashi Miura came on one of the biggest boxing stages of 2015, as the bout served as the HBO pay-per-view’s co-main event on November 21st, in support of Miguel Cotto vs Saul Alvarez.

Miura entered the fight with a (29-2-2) record and he was making the fifth defense of his world title, while Vargas entered the fight with an undefeated mark of (22-0-1) in what was his first world title fight. Both men had a reputation for all-out fighting, with Miura especially earning high praise for his title defense in Mexico where he defeated Sergio Thompson in a fiercely contested battle.

The fight started out hotly contested, and the intensity never let up. Vargas seemed to win the first two rounds, but by the fourth round, Miura seemed to pull ahead, scoring a knock-down and fighting with a lot of confidence. After brawling the first four rounds, Miura appeared to settle into a more technical approach. Rounds 5 and 6 saw the pendulum swing back towards Vargas, as he withstood Miura’s rush to open the fifth round and the sixth round saw both men exchanging hard punches.

The big swinging continued, and though Vargas likely edged Miura in rounds 5 and 6, Vargas’ face was cut in at least two spots and Miura started to assert himself again in rounds 7 and 8. Miura was beginning to grow in confidence while it appeared that Vargas was beginning to slow down, and Miura appeared to hurt Vargas at the end of the 8th round.

Vargas turned the tide again at the start of the ninth round, scoring a knock down with an uppercut and a straight right hand that took Miura’s legs and sent him to the canvas. Purely on instinct, Miura got back up and continued to fight, but Vargas was landing frequently and with force. Referee Tony Weeks stepped in to stop the fight at the halfway point of round 9 as Miura was sustaining a barrage of punches.

Miura still had a minute and a half to survive if he was going to get out of the round, and it was clear that he was not going to stop fighting.

A back and forth battle of wills between two world championship level fighters, Takashi Miura versus “El Bandido” Vargas wins the 2015 Fight of the Year.

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Jan 9 in Germany – Feigenbutz and De Carolis To Settle Score

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This coming Saturday, January 9th, the stage is set at the Baden Arena in Offenburg, Germany for a re-match between Vincent Feigenbutz and Giovanni De Carolis. The highly anticipated re-match is set to air on SAT.1 in Germany, and Feigenbutz will once again be defending his GBU and interim WBA World titles at Super Middleweight.

The first meeting between the two was less than three months ago, on October 17th and that meeting saw Feigenbutz controversially edge De Carolis on the judge’s cards by scores of (115-113, 114-113 and 115-113). De Carolis scored a flash knock down in the opening round, and he appeared to outbox Feigenbutz in the early going, but the 20 year old German champion came on in the later rounds.

The first bout is described as one of the most crowd-pleasing bouts of the year in Germany, and De Carolis and many observers felt that the Italian had done enough to win.

De Carolis told German language website RAN.DE that he was more prepared for the re-match, and that due to the arrogance Feigenbutz displayed in the aftermath of the first fight, he was confident that he had won over some of the audience. Though De Carolis fell short of predicting victory, he promised a re-vamped strategy tailored to what he has learned about Feigenbutz, whom he termed immature and inexperienced.

The stage is set for Feigenbutz vs De Carolis 2, this Saturday January 9th in Offenburg, Germany. If you can get to the live event do it, if not you have SAT.1 in Germany airing the fights, and The Boxing Channel right back here for full results.

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2015 Knock Out of the Year – Saul Alvarez KO’s James Kirkland

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On May 9th of 2015, Saul “Canelo” Alvarez delivered a resonant knock-out of James Kirkland on HBO that wins the 2015 KO of the Year.

The knock-out itself came in the third round, after slightly more than two minutes of action. The end came when Alvarez delivered a single, big right hand that caught Kirkland on the jaw and left him flat on his back after spinning to the canvas.Alvarez was clearly the big star heading into the fight. The fight was telecast by HBO for free just one week after the controversial and disappointing Floyd Mayweather Jr. and Manny Pacquiao fight, and Alvarez was under pressure to deliver the type of finish that people were going to talk about. Kirkland was happy to oblige Alvarez, taking it right to Alvarez from the start. Kirkland’s aggression saw him appear to land blows that troubled the young Mexican in the early going. Alvarez played good defense, and he floored Kirkland in the first round, displaying his power and his technique in knocking down an aggressive opponent.

However, Kirkland kept coming at Alvarez and the fight entered the third round with both men working hard and the feeling that the fight would not go the distance. Kirkland continued to move forward, keeping “Canelo” against the ropes and scoring points with a barrage of punches while looking for an opening.

At around the two minute mark, Alvarez landed an uppercut that sent Kirkland to the canvas again. Kirkland got up, but it was clear that he did not have his legs under him. Kirkland was going to try to survive the round, but Alvarez had an opportunity to close out the fight. The question was would he take it?

Alvarez closed in on Kirkland, putting his opponent’s back to the ropes. Kirkland was hurt, but he was still dangerous, pawing with punches and loading up for one big shot.

But it was the big shot “Canelo” threw that ended the night. Kirkland never saw it coming, as he was loading up with a huge right hand of his own. The right Alvarez threw cracked Kirkland in the jaw, and his eyes went blank. His big right hand whizzed harmlessly over the head of a ducking Alvarez, providing the momentum for the spin that left Kirkland prone on the canvas.

Saul “Canelo” Alvarez went on to defeat Miguel Cotto in his second fight of 2015 and he is clearly one of boxing’s biggest stars heading into 2016. On May 9th Alvarez added another reel to his highlight film when he knocked out James Kirkland with the 2015 “Knock Out of the Year”.

Photo by naoki fukuda

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