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Erik Morales To Fight Lucas Matthysse on Sept. 17

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MoralesMatthyssePreLAPC_Hoganphotos_2ERIK MORALES VS. LUCAS MATTHYSSE AND JESSIE VARGAS VS. JOSESITO LOPEZ ADDED TO “STAR POWER: MAYWEATHER VS. ORTIZ” FIGHT CARD, OFFICIALLY MAKING SEPTEMBER 17 THE BIGGEST NIGHT IN THE BOXING UNIVERSE

“STAR POWER” LIVES UP TO ITS NAME AS SEPTEMBER 17 PAY-PER-VIEW EXTRAVAGANZA INCLUDES THREE TITLE FIGHTS FROM TWO SITES IN ONE NIGHT

LOS ANGELES (August 3)…The “STAR POWER: Mayweather vs. Ortiz” pay-per-view telecast is now complete with four star-studded fights from two sites all taking place Saturday, September 17 from the MGM Grand in Las Vegas and STAPLES Center in Los Angeles.  Mayweather Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions announced today that Erik Morales vs. Lucas Matthysse and Jessie Vargas vs. Josesito Lopez have been added to the mega-event, which is being produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®.

The out-of-this-world night of boxing will kick-off with a super lightweight bout featuring undefeated rising star Vargas in his HBO Pay-Per-View debut against hard-hitting Lopez, followed by the first of the night’s three world title fights as Mexican boxing legend Morales will face power punching Argentine Matthysse for the WBC Super Lightweight World Championship.  The pay-per-view telecast will then go live to STAPLES Center in Los Angeles with Mexican boxing phenom Canelo Alvarez taking on Alfonso Gomez for the WBC Super Welterweight World Championship, followed by the main event welterweight championship mega-fight, Floyd Mayweather vs. Victor Ortiz, live from Las Vegas.

Fans in attendance at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas will be able to see the Alvarez vs. Gomez fight live, while those in attendance at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles will see Mayweather vs. Ortiz and Morales vs. Matthysse live.  Following the showing of Mayweather vs. Ortiz at STAPLES Center, fans in attendance will see two special post-fight concerts performed by Los Tucanes de Tijuana and El Gran Silencio.

“The addition of Morales vs. Matthysse and Vargas vs. Lopez to the September 17 fight card makes ‘STAR POWER’ without a doubt the biggest night of boxing in 2011,” said Leonard Ellerbe, CEO of Mayweather Promotions.  “Mayweather Promotions is very excited about Jessie Vargas’ pay-per-view debut on such a huge event to really get his name out there and show the world what he can do.”

“Now that we have a complete pay-per-view card, the stage is set for the world to witness a real supernova of boxing,” said Richard Schaefer, CEO of Golden Boy Promotions.  “Three title fights in one night is something that we are very proud to bring to boxing fans around the world.  Each of these championship fights could stand alone as their own main event and fans will be able to experience them all in one night.  Adding undefeated Jessie Vargas in his pay-per-view debut and the legendary Erik Morales, who is fighting to make history as the first Mexican boxing warrior to win world titles in four weight classes, really strengthens the entire ‘STAR POWER’ event.”

Tickets for Mayweather vs. Ortiz, Morales vs. Matthysse and Vargas vs. Lopez at the MGM Grand Garden Arena are priced at $1,250, $1,000, $600, $300 and $150, not including applicable service charges. Ticket sales are limited to twelve (12) per person at the $1,250, $1,000, $600 and $300 price levels with a ticket limit of two (2) per person at the $150 price level.  To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com.

STAPLES Center tickets for Alvarez vs. Gomez are priced at $300, $150, $75, and $50, are on sale now and available for purchase online at ticketmaster.com, via Ticketmaster charge-by-phone lines at (800)745-3000.  Tickets are also available at STAPLES Center box office.

A three-division world champion and future Hall of Famer, Erik “El Terrible” Morales (51-7, 35 KO’s) ruled the boxing landscape for years, thrilling fans with his classic battles against Manny Pacquiao, Marco Antonio Barrera, Paulie Ayala, Wayne McCullough and In-Jin Chi. But when he returned from a nearly three year layoff in 2010, many wondered if the Tijuana native still had what it took to compete with the elite.  Those questions were answered loud and clear with a three fight winning streak in 2010 and a Fight of the Year candidate in April of 2011, when he went to war for 12 rounds with Marcos Maidana before losing a razor-thin majority decision.  Now, the 34-year old warrior is back in the ring and back in Las Vegas to face the concussive punching Matthysse as he vies to become the only Mexican fighter in history to win world titles in four weight divisions.

“This fight is the chance of a lifetime,” said Morales. “I have waited for this moment my entire career.  To have the opportunity to win world titles in four weight divisions on Mexican Independence Day and on a night like this is a dream come true.  I am going to train harder than ever to make the Mexican people proud and to be victorious on September 17.”

One of boxing’s hardest punchers, Lucas Matthysse (28-2, 26 KO’s) of Trelew, Argentina has made former World Champions Zab “Super” Judah and Devon Alexander see stars in his last two fights, knocking each of them down, only to lose both fights by controversial split decisions.  The 28-year-old’s new role as the people’s champion is a good one for the crowd-pleasing standout, who has been delivering stellar performances from the time he turned professional in 2004.  A former WBO Latino and WBO Intercontinental champion who counts “Vicious” Vivian Harris, DeMarcus “Chop Chop” Corley and Rogelio Castaneda Jr. among his vanquished foes, Matthysse, who has won 93 percent of his fights by way of knockout,  is amped up and ready to trade blows with one of the sport’s modern greats, Erik Morales, on September 17.

“I cannot wait to get in the ring and fight Erik Morales,” said Matthysse.  “I will do anything and everything I can to walk away from this fight as a world champion.  I will work harder because I don’t want to pass up this magnificent opportunity.”

Jessie Vargas (16-0, 9 KO’s), who grew up in Los Angeles, now resides in Las Vegas and trains at the Mayweather Boxing Club with recently hired trainer Robert Alcazar, is coming off of an impressive second-round knockout win over veteran Walter Estrada on July 8.  His extraordinary performance set off a national buzz among boxing writers and fans that the young prospect is on the fast track to boxing greatness.  Appearing in the opening bout in his pay-per-view debut, Vargas has the chance of a lifetime to make his name and talent known around the world against a stiff test in Josesito Lopez.

“Floyd Mayweather and Mayweather Promotions have given me an amazing opportunity to fight on the biggest night in boxing this year,” said Vargas.  “On September 17, I know I will be ready to show the world that all of my hard work and preparation has led to this opportunity.  I am so excited to be a part of this event and I look forward to beating Lopez and keeping my undefeated record.”

Riverside, California’s Josesito Lopez (29-3, 17 KO’s) may only be 27-years-old, but he’s old school when it comes to his approach to the sport of boxing.  This attitude has led him to nearly 30 pro wins, with his only losses coming via narrow decisions.  Currently riding a seven-fight winning streak, Lopez showed off his veteran savvy in his most recent victory in January, when he tarnished hot prospect Mike Dallas Jr.’s perfect record by scoring a seventh round knockout.

“I am very excited to be a part of this event and to show the world that I am a force to be reckoned with in the ring,” said Lopez.  “I haven’t lost a fight in over three years and I don’t plan on losing this one.  Jessie Vargas might be undefeated now, but he won’t be after September 17.”

“STAR POWER” is a mega-event taking place on Saturday, Sept. 17 from two world-class cities with three world titles at stake.  Floyd Mayweather and Victor Ortiz will face off in a 12-round fight for Ortiz’s WBC Welterweight World Title from the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.  Canelo Alvarez and Alfonso Gomez will do battle in a 12-round fight for Alvarez’s WBC Super Welterweight World Title from STAPLES Center in Los Angeles, Calif.  Also live in Las Vegas, will be Erik Morales vs. Lucas Matthysse in a 12 round fight for the vacant WBC Super Lightweight World Title and an opening fight featuring undefeated rising star Jessie Vargas against top contender Josesito Lopez.  The mega event is promoted by Mayweather Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Cerveza Tecate, DeWALT Tools and AT&T.  Alvarez vs. Gomez is presented in association with Canelo Promotions and Morales vs. Matthysse is presented in association with Box Latino Promotions and Arano Box Promotions.  “STAR POWER: Mayweather vs. Ortiz” will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.

For more information, visit www.floydmayweather.com, www.goldenboypromotions.com, www.mgmgrand.com and www.staplescenter.com; follow on Twitter at @floydmayweather, @mayweatherpromo, @goldenboyboxing, @VICIOUSOrtiz, @terrible100, @Jessie_Vargas, @JosesitoLopez, @mgmgrand; or become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/FloydMayweather, www.facebook.com/Mayweatherpromotions, www.facebook.com/GoldenBoyBoxing.  Follow HBO Boxing news at www.hbo.com/boxing, Facebook at www.facebook.com/hboboxing and on Twitter @hboboxing.  Follow STAPLES Center on Facebook at www.facebook.com/staplescenter and on Twitter @STAPLESCenterLA.

The “STAR POWER” pay-per-view telecast, which begins at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT, will be produced and distributed by HBO Pay-Per-View and will be available to more than 92 million pay-per-view homes.  The telecast will be available in HD-TV for those viewers who can receive HD.  HBO Pay-Per-View®, a division of Home Box Office, Inc., is the leading supplier of event programming to the pay-per-view industry.  For Mayweather vs. Ortiz fight week updates, log on to www.hbo.com.

HBO®’s Emmy® Award-winning all-access series “24/7” premieres an all-new edition when “24/7 Mayweather/Ortiz” debuts Saturday, Aug. 27 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.  The four-part series will air for three consecutive Saturday nights before the finale airs the night before the welterweight championship showdown in Las Vegas.

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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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