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Tix For Chavez Jr-Zbik On Sale NOW

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LOS ANGELES (April 12, 2011) – In a battle of the undefeated, World Boxing Council (WBC) middleweight champion SEBASTIAN ZBIK will defend his crown against the Son of the Legend, JULIO CÉSAR CHÁVEZ, JR., the WBC’s No. 1 contender and mandatory challenger, Saturday, June 4, at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles – just a few blocks north of the Olympic Auditorium where the legendary Julio César Chávez won his first world title. The fight will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark®, beginning at 10 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).

“The Son Also Rises: Zbik vs. Chávez, Jr.” will also feature a tribute to Méxican icon JULIO CÉSAR CHÁVEZ, who will be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame the following week, as well as the Los Angeles boxing debut of Baltimore Ravens safety and undefeated cruiserweight TOMMY ZBIKOWSKI, and the return of WBC female super welterweight champion CHRISTY MARTIN, seeking her landmark 50th career victory.

Promoted by Top Rank, in association with Zanfer promotions, Universum Media Network, TECATE, and STAPLES Center, tickets to Zbik vs. Chávez Jr., priced at $250, $150, $100, $75 and $50, are on sale now. Tickets can be purchased online at www.staplescenter.com, via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (800)745-3000, or at the STAPLES Center box office.

“June 4 is indeed historic as Julio César Chávez Jr. battles for the middleweight championship,” said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “Julio's father — Julio César Chávez, soon to be inducted into the International Boxing Hall of Fame — won his first world title in Los Angeles at the Olympic Auditorium. This was the real start of his legendary career. Now his son Julio Jr. tries to continue in that same tradition, taking on Sebastian Zbik for the WBC Middleweight Championship in the same city. What a story.”

Chávez, an underdog despite his sterling 43-0 record, stopped Mario “Azabache” Martinez in the eighth round of their September 13, 1984 battle to claim the vacant WBC super featherweight title – his first world championship crown.

“I am very happy to get this opportunity to fight for a world title so that I can fulfill my dream of becoming a world champion,” said Chávez Jr. “And what better city to do it in than Los Angeles, where my father won his first championship? My father has always considered Los Angeles his second home.”

“It will be a night of firsts for me — my first defense of the WBC middleweight title, my first fight in the U.S. and my first fight on HBO,” said Zbik. “I know Julio will be up for the challenge on June 4 but I will be ready for him. It will be a night of firsts for him too — his first loss.”

“My son has worked very hard to get this opportunity to fight for a world title and I am very happy and proud that he will get his chance. He is ready for this fight and I am confident that he will become a world champion,” said Chávez Sr.

“We're happy to present the HBO debuts of Julio César Chávez Jr. and Sebastian Zbik,” said Kery Davis, senior vice president of programming, HBO Sports. “STAPLES Center always provides a great stage and we are looking forward to some fireworks the night of June 4.”

Chávez Jr. (42-0-1, 30 KOs), of Culiacan, México, is the son of Mexico’s greatest fighter Julio César Chávez. Chávez, 25, took up the “family business” in 2003, winning a four-round decision in his professional debut. Eight years later, the reigning WBC Silver middleweight champion and superior gate attraction is poised to make his own mark in the boxing world. He took a major step toward that goal by enlisting legendary trainer Freddie Roach to take him to the next level. Their first fight together was a gigantic success, winning the vacant WBC silver middleweight with a dominant 12-round unanimous decision over top-10 contender John Duddy (29-1, 18 KOs), on last June at the Alamodome in San Antonio. He successfully defended that title on January 29, winning a unanimous decision over Billy Lyell. Since 2009, Chávez Jr., won 10-round unanimous decisions over Luciano Cuello and Troy Rowland and stopped Jason LeHoullier in the first round. Making those five victories even more impressive is the fact that Chávez’s opponents had a combined record 120-12-1 when he defeated them.

Zbik (30-0, 10 KOs), of Schwerin, Germany, will be making his U.S. debut in his first title defense. The slick middleweight champion is trained by former World Boxing Organization (WBO) lightweight champion Artur Grigorian, whose eight-year title reign included 18 successful defenses. Zbik captured the WBC interim middleweight title in 2009 by winning a 12-round unanimous decision over Domenico Spada (29-1). He successfully defended the interim title against Emanuele Della Rosa (22-0), Spada (30-2) and Jorge Heiland (16-0) all by 12-round decisions. He was elevated to WBC middleweight champion in January when Martinez vacated the title.

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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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