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Jermain Taylor Fights Caleb Truax on April 20

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DiBellaLogo-no-websiteNEW YORK (March 16, 2012) On Friday, April 20, DiBella Entertainment, in association with Golden Boy Promotions, will present a special edition of ShoBox: The New Generation when former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain “Bad Intentions” Taylor (29-4-1, 18 KO's) takes on the undefeated Caleb “Golden” Truax (18-0-1, 10 KO's) in a 10-round middleweight matchup.  In the co-featured bout, former Cuban amateur star Erislandy Lara (15-1-1, 10 KO's) takes on Ronald Hearns (26-2, 20 KO's) in a fight originally scheduled for February 11 as the co-feature to Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto II, but that was postponed after a Berto injury caused a postponement of the event.  SHOWTIME® will begin live coverage starting at 11 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).

Taylor made his successful return to the ring in December on ShoBox after a nearly two-year layoff, scoring an eighth-round TKO over the tough-as-nails Jesse Nicklow.  There was obviously some rust coming off such a long hiatus, but there were also some very promising moments shown by the man who twice defeated ring legend, and future Hall-of-Famer Bernard Hopkins, ending Hopkins' record-setting 20 straight title defenses.  Taylor, who is currently ranked as the No. 9 middleweight in the WBC world rankings, is looking to make another run at a middleweight championship, but must first get past the unbeaten Truax.

“I am excited to be getting back in the ring again on April 20th and taking another step towards becoming middleweight champion.  I expect a tough fight out of Truax but I am refocused now and have rededicated myself to the sport and nothing is going to stop me from becoming champion again,” said Taylor.

“A fight with Jermain Taylor is the opportunity I have been looking for to take my career to the next level.  On April 20th, I will capitalize and defeat the former world champion,” said Truax.

The Lara-Hearns matchup was originally scheduled to take place earlier this year on the undercard of the Victor Ortiz vs. Andre Berto rematch but the entire card was postponed after Berto suffered a torn biceps. Lara-Hearns is scheduled for 10 rounds in the junior middleweight division.

One of Cuba's greatest boxers and the owner of three consecutive national championships and one world championship as an amateur, Erislandy Lara defected from his homeland in order to chase glory as a professional and he is well on the way to achieving that goal.  Unbeaten in his first 16 professional fights, Lara was the victim of one of the most controversial decisions in recent history last July when judges awarded former World Champion Paul “The Punisher” Williams a 12-round decision win in a fight most observers believed the Guantanamo-native won.  Undeterred, the 28-year-old will be back in the ring on April 20 and is determined to be the lone judge on fight night.

The name “Hearns” is royalty in boxing circles thanks to the exploits of soon-to-be inducted Hall of Famer Thomas “The Hitman” Hearns.  The Hitman's son, 33-year-old Ronald “The Chosen One” Hearns, is doing his best to continue the family business into the next generation.  A professional since 2004, the lanky boxer-puncher has won five of his last six fights, with the only loss coming in a middleweight title bout against Felix Sturm in 2011.  Now back at 154 pounds, Hearns feels stronger, faster and ready to issue Lara his second straight defeat.

“MGM Resort's Beau Rivage is proud to serve as the venue for this DiBella Entertainment and SHOWTIME boxing event,” said George P. Corchis, Jr., President and Chief Operating Officer of MGM Resorts Regional Operations. “We look forward to bringing championship boxing back to Biloxi on April 20 and putting on another world-class event.”

A complete list of undercard bouts will be announced shortly.  Tickets, priced at $150, $100, and $50 plus tax and service charge, are available online at www.beaurivage.com, by phone at 888.566.7469 or in person at the Beau Rivage Theatre box office. Beau Rivage room reservations can be made by calling 888.567.6667 or visiting www.beaurivage.com.

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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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