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VIC: “I Am Very Confident I Will KO Perez, Destroy Him”

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LOS ANGELES  (April 20, 2011) –Undefeated WBC Silver Bantamweight Champion Abner Mares and two-division titleholder Vic Darchinyan participated in an open media workout Tuesday at Westside Boxing Gym with Oscar de la Hoya, president of Golden Boy Promotions/ Mares’ promoter in attendance.

This Saturday, April 23, Mares and Darchinyan will compete in separate bouts in The Bantamweight Tournament Final:  Winner Takes All live on SHOWTIME® (10:30 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast) from Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE.

In the finals of the four-fighter, two-night tournament, Mares (21-0-1, 13 KOs), of Hawaiian Gardens, Calif., by way of Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico, will challenge defending champion Joseph Agbeko (28-2, 22 KOs), of Accra, Ghana, for the IBF 118-pound title. Mares’ WBC Silver bantamweight belt will also be at stake in the 12-round bout.

Darchinyan (35-3-1, 27 KOs), of Sydney, Australia, by way of Vanadzok, Armenia, and former IBF bantamweight champion Yonnhy Perez (20-1-1, 14 KOs), of Santa Fe Springs, Calif., by way of Cartagena, Colombia, will clash in a key 12-round co-feature for the IBO Bantamweight World Title and a WBA Bantamweight final eliminator.

Tickets, priced at $200, $100, $75, $50 and $25, are on sale at Ticketmaster.com, via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines (800) 745-3000 and at STAPLES Center Box Office. Doors at Nokia Theatre L.A. LIVE open at 4 p.m. PT. The first non-televised undercard fight starts at 5 p.m. PT.

The Bantamweight Tournament Final: Winner Takes All is promoted by Don King Productions, Gary Shaw Productions, Golden Boy Promotions and Thompson Boxing Promotions and is sponsored by Corona and DeWalt Tools.

NOTE/REMINDER: A replay of the dramatic Semifinal fights last Dec. 11 on SHOWTIME will air this Friday, April 22, on SHO Extreme at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT.

What they said Tuesday:

OSCAR DE LA HOYA (Mares’ promoter)

“Abner is a hell of a story — he’s living the American dream.  His career was almost derailed with his eye injury and now he’ll be fighting in front of his hometown fans for a world title.

“He’s our first fighter that we’ve produced from the start.  It’s a wonderful story and we’re crossing our fingers for him.”

ABNER MARES

“He (Agbeko) does have a similar style to Mexican fighters – he comes forward and likes to fight.  It’s a different style for an African fighter, but I think it benefits us because that’s what we’re used to.

“I think the key in the fight is going to be my jab.  We have to fight an outside fight and keep my jab effective.

“This is the main event for a world title, and the whole tournament is on the line.  It’s a big deal; it feels good to have people talk about you.

“I want to fight the top fighters in their prime so I can be recognized as the best.  This tournament is helping me do that.

“I’ve seen Agbeko fight before and I think he’s two different fighters.  He can brawl and he can box.  We just need to make the fight our fight.  I’m a technical fighter but I can brawl at any time.

“He’s more of a brawler.  He boxed against Yonnhy (Perez) but I don’t see him doing that against us.

“The crowd adds to the excitement.  They feed me energy and give me a second wind.  I think that will be to my advantage.

“It would mean a lot for me and my family to win a championship in front of my hometown fans.

“This is a great division right now.  We could either do a rematch with all the fighters in the tournament or face someone like (Nonito) Donaire.  There are no bad fights in the tournament or the division.”

(on Darchinyan-Perez)

“It’s going to be tough for both of them.  Vic doesn’t like to be pressed and Yonnhy is a pro at that.  But, if Vic is able to land that left hand, I think Yonnhy is in trouble.’’

VIC DARCHINYAN

“I appreciate that people say I’m responsible for getting so many Armenians to go to fights in Southern California and other places, and I expect to see a lot of them waving flags and cheering for me on Saturday. But these people are just good boxing fans that like my style and know that I always give my best and put on exciting fights. If they didn’t like my style, or I made bad fights, they wouldn’t show up.

“I am very confident I will knock out Perez, destroy him. I feel stronger than I ever have. I will not slow down if the fight goes into the later rounds. I will not get tired. The last time, I made the weight a week before the fight. This time, I will make the weight on Friday.

“The last time, I fought stupid against Mares. I wanted to box more and showcase my skills. This time I’m      going back to my old style of fighting. I am coming in to destroy.

“I hope the referee lets me fight. Against Mares, the ref was in my ear the whole fight: don’t do this, don’t do that, watch yourself here, watch yourself there. Mentally, he took me out of my fight.

“After this fight, I want to challenge for the title. I want a rematch against Mares or Donaire. For Donaire to say he doesn’t need to give me a rematch, after I gave him a shot at my title, just shows how much he is afraid of me and doesn’t want to fight.”

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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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