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EPIX To Show Bute-Froch on May 26

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epix-hd-logo1NEW YORK, NY (April 3, 2012) – Undefeated International Boxing Federation (IBF) super middleweight champion LUCIAN BUTE will make his 10th world title defense when he battles two-time World Boxing Council super middleweight champion CARL “The Cobra” FROCH, Saturday, May 26. Promoted by Matchroom Sport, Ltd. and InterBox, the Bute vs. Froch World Super Middleweight Championship will be televised live in the U.S., from Nottingham Arena, in Nottingham, England, exclusively on EPIX, the multiplatform premium entertainment service. EpixHD.com will stream the fight live as part of a special free trial offer for boxing fans.

These two gladiators boast a combined record of 59-2 (44 KOs) – a 97% winning percentage and a 75% victory by knockout ratio.

As has become the custom, EPIX will once again present the closed-captioned simulcast of this world championship rumble on the jumbotron in Times Square in New York City (Broadway between 44th and 45th).

“EPIX is very pleased with the fan reaction and audience growth of its series of exclusive live U.S. telecasts of world championship fights. The fireworks Bute vs. Froch will produce is the perfect follow up to our unprecedented heavyweight championship trilogy which featured Wladimir Klitschko, Vitali Klitschko and Alexander Povetkin defending their world titles over three consecutive weeks,” said Travis Pomposello, EPIX CCO and executive producer of EPIX Sports.

“I am very pleased that boxing fans in the United States won’t miss this war between Carl Froch and me. I want to thank the EPIX network for broadcasting this fight. I am training very seriously to face Carl Froch and I look forward to defending my title for the 10th time. May 26th is going to be a great night of boxing!” said Bute.

“I’m thrilled that EPIX has taken on my fight with Lucian. I have a lot of fans across the pond and it is important that they get to see this fight live. It’s going to be a great atmosphere in my hometown on the night because it’s been so long since I’ve boxed there and I think people will be impressed at the noise and passion my fans show when they turn out in force – along with the class inside the ring on the night, it’s going to be a must see event,” said Froch.

“The enthusiasm and momentum building for this event is huge. We are very happy and proud that EPIX will present one of the best fights of 2012 in the world, live to boxing fans across United States. It was important for InterBox that Lucian get as much exposure throughout the World as possible,” said Jean Bedard, President of InterBox.

“We’re delighted to be teaming up with EPIX on this fight. It’s a massive night in World Championship boxing and I am sure that EPIX will do a great job presenting what is arguably the fight of the year,” said Eddie Hearn, Group Managing Director of Matchroom Sport, Ltd.

Bute (30-0, 24 KOs), a newly-minted Canadian Citizen, is a native of Galat, Romania who now fights out of Montréal, Québec, Canada. When he travels to Froch’s backyard in Nottingham it will be the first time Bute has not fought in Canada or Romania since 2004. A southpaw known for his two-fisted punching power and counterpunching prowess, Bute is in the fifth year of his world championship reign. He captured the world title in 2007, knocking out defending champion Alejandro Berrio in the 11th round of their ferocious fight. Seven of Bute’s nine consecutive title defense victories have been by stoppage, including former world champion William Joppy, and top-rated contenders Librado Andrade, Edison Miranda, Jean-Paul Mendy and Fulgencio Zuniga. His recent six-bout victory by knockout streak ended in November with his unanimous decision victory over former world champion Glenn Johnson. Bute’s performance was so dominating he won all 12 rounds on two judges’ cards and 11 or 12 rounds on the third card with scores of 120-108, 120-108, and 119-109

Froch (28-2, 20 KOs), of Nottingham, England, is a pressure fighter known for his aggressive style and exceptional skills and movement. It would be hard to find another fighter in this division who has fought the caliber of opposition Froch has faced. He captured his first world title – the vacant WBC super middleweight championship – in 2008, winning a unanimous decision over future world champion Jean Pascal in a battle of undefeated contenders. Froch successfully defended the title twice in 2009, knocking out former world champion Jermain Taylor in the 12th round and winning a split decision over undefeated No. 1 contender Andre Dirrell. After losing the title in 2010 to Mikkel Kessler via a close but unanimous decision, Froch regained the WBC title later that year with a unanimous decision victory over former world champion Arthur Abraham. After successfully defending the title against Glen Johnson in June 2011, Froch lost his crown last December to undefeated WBA super middleweight champion and 2011 Fighter of the Year Andre Ward, in a title unification fight, via a close unanimous decision.

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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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