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Star Boxing Publicist Kevin Rooney To Debut As Pro On April 22

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548On Friday, April 22nd, at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, CT, Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing will present that weeks ESPN “Friday Night Fights”.  Headlining the card is “The Mongolian Mongoose” Bayan Jargal (15-1-3, 10KO's) squaring off against the “Khanqueror” Breidis Prescott (23-2, 19KO's) in a ten round jr. welterweight showdown.  Also featured on the card will be 2008 US Olympian, and highly regarded undefeated jr. middleweight prospect, Demetrius Andrade (12-0, 8KO's) taking on once beaten Omar Bell (8-1, 5KO's).  If the two featured ESPN bouts aren't intriguing enough for you, Star Boxing's Publicist, Kevin Rooney Jr. will be making his pro-debut on the undercard.

The 26-year-old Rooney Jr., who graduated from Fordham University in the Bronx in 2007 and has been working for Star full-time since the summer of 2008, is trained and managed by his father, Mike Tyson's former trainer, Kevin Rooney Sr.  After beginning boxing at just five years old, Rooney Jr. stepped away from the sport before coming back to it and returning to training after he came on board with Star.   

“I always had the itch to get back into it, but when I started working for Joe (DeGuardia) and Star is when I really started to seriously think about it,” says Rooney Jr. “I started training and took it one step at a time and now I am ready to take the next step.”  

“I always had the itch to get back into it, but when I started working for Joe (DeGuardia) and Star is when I really started to seriously think about it,” says Rooney Jr. “I started training and took it one step at a time and now I am ready to take the next step.”  

While the typical fight night is a bit hectic for Rooney Jr. who handles all of the Public Relations, as well as many of the event coordination duties for Star, the April 22nd show will have him undoubtedly a bit more busy.   

“Luckily for me my father's accent is Staten Island, Joe's is the Bronx, so I shouldn't get the two confused when I'm getting orders from both throughout the night,” says Rooney with a laugh.   

“He better end his fight quickly and be in and out of that dressing room before the next fight starts or we will have a real problem,” jokes DeGuardia, CEO and President of Star Boxing, a former boxer himself.  “All jokes aside, we couldn't be happier than to have Kevin make his debut on one of our cards.  Working for Star, and the relationship we have built together the last three years it's only fitting.”    

“For those who haven't seen Kevin fight before, he has ability,” adds DeGuardia.  “I think a lot of people are going to be surprised when they see him in the ring.  We are excited to see how far he can go with it.  Besides the fact that he has his father's name and his father behind him, he is good looking Irish kid, with an exciting style, fighting out of New York.  We are looking forward to start bringing in the Irish fan base, which is known to come out in armies to support their Irish fighters.”  

“I'm very excited for the opportunity to have my debut on one of Joe's cards,” says Rooney.  “Not a lot of people get to ever fight on such a high profile card, let alone make their pro-debut on it, so I couldn't be more thankful.  I havSTAR BOXINGe been thinking about this day for a very long-time, and finally it's almost here.  I have a lot of people coming out to show their support and I don't plan on letting them down.”

Regarding his future in the sport, Rooney is optimistic.

“I'm working really hard every day in the gym.  I feel myself maturing and improving each and every day.  There are things that I obviously need to work on, but that's the great thing about this sport, you are always learning something new.  While I might not have the biggest amateur background (Rooney Jr. had approximately 12 fights total from when he started as a young kid till now) I feel that I have one of the best trainers in the entire world in my father, and as long as I keep listening to him and keep working hard, the sky's the limit.”

Tickets are on sale now and can be purchased by calling Ticketmaster at 1 (800) 745-3000 or visiting www.ticketmaster.com.  Tickets can also be purchased by calling the Star Boxing office at (718) 823-2000 or visiting www.starboxing.com.  Tickets are also available for purchase at the Mohegan Sun Box Office.  Tickets are priced at $80, $50 and $35.  ESPN will begin live coverage of the event starting at 8PM ET.

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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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