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Chasing Mexico’s Jackie Nava & Other Fight Chatter

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Ana Julaton May 2012There was a television show in the late 1950s and early 1960s called “Have Gun Will Travel.” It was about a cowboy for hire named Paladin who lived in San Francisco and roamed the Wild West as a sort of sleuth/soldier of war.

Ana “The Hurricane” Julaton reminds me of that character. She’s a 21st century female version of that TV icon.

Lately, the San Francisco-based prizefighter has been roaming the world accepting all challenges, in Mexico, Canada or Argentina. It was in the South American nation that Julaton lost her WBO junior featherweight world title belt to Yesica Marcos. All the cards were stacked against her and of course she lost by decision.

Julaton (11-3-1) knocked down Marcos during the fight but she was handicapped by the referee who would not allow her to attack the Argentine’s soft body. Every time she focused on the body bloody screams erupted from the Argentine corner and the referee responded like he had a string attached to his head.

No matter. The gutsy fighter is on to other challenges.

One challenge Julaton would love is to go to Tijuana, Mexico in the heart of current WBA junior featherweight titleholder Jackie “Aztec Princess” Nava’s home. The rugged Mexican fighter had two magnificent battles with WBC junior bantamweight titleholder Ana Maria Torres who jumped up two divisions to fight her to a draw, then beat her.

Nava can’t seem to get over it. That’s a natural instinct for a superb prizefighter. They can’t believe they can be beaten especially if they’re still standing.

Julaton has been chasing Nava for a fight for more than a year and so far there has been nary an answer. The Mexican fighter tried to lure Southern California’s Kaliesha West and then fought champion Chanttall Martinez, whom she beat. She is definitely not afraid of Julaton but what is the mystery behind not accepting to fight the Philippine-American?

According to advisor and trainer Angelo Reyes, a match between Mexico’s Nava and Philippine boxer Julaton would draw television from Mexico, Philippines and Canada. That seems like a logical fit for Nava. But some things just don’t work out. Hopefully this will.

The good thing is the 122-pound junior featherweight division is perhaps one of the most talented and loaded in women’s boxing. It’s like the Wild West in the 19th century.

Other fight chatter

WBC flyweight world champion Mariana “Barbie” Juarez (33-5-3, 16 KOs) meets former flyweight titleholder Arely Mucino (15-1-1, 8 KOs) on Saturday, May 12. Their title match will take place at the Presidente Hotel in Mexico City. Juarez fights out of Mexico City and Mucino calls Monterrey her home.

WBA middleweight titleholder Gennady Golovkin (22-0, 19 KOs) clashes with Makoto Fuchigami (19-6, 10 KOs) on Saturday, May 12. The world title bout will be held at the Ice Palace in Brovari, Ukraine. Golovkin made his preparations in Big Bear Lake and is trained by Abel Sanchez.

Vaia Zaganas recently appeared in the television series “A 1,000 Ways to Die”. Zaganas, a former mini-flyweight world champion, appears in the television show as a boxer in one of the episodes who fights a dirty fighter who eventually dies from a blood clot. Zaganas retired from boxing several years ago and now resides in Los Angeles.

Junior lightweight contender Vicente Escobedo (25-3, 15 KOs) faces Juan Ruiz (23-9, 7 KOs) on Saturday, May 12. Their match takes place in Escobedo’s hometown Woodland, California. Escobedo trains in Indio, Calif. under the tutelage of Joel Diaz.

WBO flyweight champion Brian “Hawaiian Punch” Viloria clashes with Mexico’s Omar Nino (31-4-2, 13 KOs) on Sunday. Their world title clash takes place in Manila, Philippine Islands. This is their third meeting. Nino won the first encounter and the second was a no contest after the Mexico fighter failed the drug test in 2006. The fight will be telecast on pay-per-view television on Sat. 6 p.m. PT.

Germany’s Robert Stieglitz (42-2, 23 KOs) held on to the WBO super middleweight world title by unanimous decision against Nader Hamdan (43-10-1, 18 KOs) on Saturday. The match was held in Germany. WBO cruiserweight champion Marco Huck (35-2, 25 KOs) defeated Ola Afolabi (19-3-3) by a close majority decision.

Mexico’s Jackie Nava (27-4-3, 11 KOs) kept the female WBA junior featherweight world title by unanimous decision against Diana Ayala (12-7-3) after 10 rounds. The match was held in Tijuana. On the same card Rafael Marquez (41-7, 37 KOs) knocked out Eric Aiken (16-9-1) at 2:26 of round one.

WBA featherweight titleholder Chris John (47-0-2, 22 KOs) maintained the title by unanimous decision over Shoji Kimura (24-5-2). In another title match Daud Yordan (29-2, 23 KOs) stopped Lorenzo Villanueva (22-1, 21 KOs) at 1:06 of round two to win the vacant IBO featherweight title. Both fights were held in Singapore.

DeMarcus “Chop, Chop” Corley (39-19-1, 22 KOs) knocked out Paul McCloskey (23-2, 12 KOs) at 2:28 of round 10. Their battle took place Saturday, May 5, at Belfast, Northern Ireland. Corley was a former junior welterweight world champion in 2003. Both McCloskey and Corley are southpaws.

Mexico’s Daniel Ponce de Leon (43-4, 35 KOs) defeated fellow Mexican Eduardo Lazcano (24-3, 11 KOs) on Friday, May 4 in Las Vegas. Also, Jessica Rakoczy (32-3, 12 KOs) stopped Colorado’s Brittany Cruz (8-6-1) at 1:27 of round four.

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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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