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Bermane Stiverne Bloodies and Beats Chris Arreola in Ontario, CA

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Bermane “Beware” Stiverne kept part of his promise in beating Chris “The Nightmare” Arreola in front of his hometown crowd on Saturday. Solid body work and a steady jab bloodied the Riverside fighter who was ranked number one.

“His words are what won this fight for me,” claimed Stiverne about Arreola. “He said he was going to knock me out.”

Behind crisp jabs and solid body blows Stiverne (23-2-1, 20 Kos) took the air out of Arreola (35-3, 30 Kos) before a crowd of maybe 4,000 fans at the Citizens Business Bank Arena. The Haiti native now becomes the contender for the WBC world title belt held by Vitali Klitschko.

“You’ve got to do it in their hometown,” said Don King, who promotes Stiverne.

That he did.

Arreola started out the aggressor behind a jab and some combination punching. Stiverne seemed content to allow the Riverside heavyweight to fire away. Neither fighter was hurt by any of the exchanges but Arreola was far busier.

Stiverne was a little busier in the second round behind the one-two combinations, but Arreola was still the busier fighter overall. Jabs and combinations rained from Arreola especially when Stiverne was on the ropes.

Suddenly, in round three, everything turned around. Despite steady work by Arreola, at the end of the round during an exchange Stiverne caught the Riverside heavyweight with a perfect counter right cross. Down went Arreola.

“I got caught,” said Arreola.

During the knockdown, one of Stiverne’s corner men threw in the stool as referee Jack Reiss began to count. The fight could have ended suddenly on the infraction which is grounds for disqualification. The referee let it go and Arreola beat the count.

“I forgot that he needed to count,” said Don House who trains Stiverne. “I made a mistake.”

From that point on Arreola seemed to have the energy sapped but he continued on despite blood streaming down his face and problems breathing.

“When he dropped me he broke my nose and I couldn’t breathe,” said Arreola, whose nose bled profusely.

Arreola opened up aggressively the next round and during the fourth round but slipped on the floor on ice left on the corner of Stiverne. The Haiti heavyweight jabbed and fired one-two combinations and kept Arreola from regaining momentum. Blood streamed down the face of the Riverside fighter because of a possible busted nose.

“I trained to keep him away with the jab,” said Stiverne, who used hard and soft jabs throughout the fight. “It was working so I kept doing it.”

Steady body work by Stiverne and some quick counters kept Arreola from mounting a rally in the fifth round. Blood continued to flow from Arreola who used some jabs and one-two combos but was not effective enough to win the round.

“I could have stood and trade punches with him, but what for?” said Stiverne.

Body shots came one after the other from Stiverne from rounds six through eight. Arreola, who is known for his body work, was the recipient for the punches instead of the giver. It was a strange sight to see a Mexican fighter not using the body punch to his own advantage.

Arreola seemed to lose use of his right hand as Stiverne kept advancing. Left jabs were the only weapons Arreola used in round eight. Stiverne continued to fire away outside and inside. The body work continued but toward the end of the round he tired a bit.

“He was supposed to use more jabs,” said House, who trains Stiverne in Las Vegas. “But he hurt his back in the fourth round.”

After losing the last half dozen round Arreola began attacking with the right and left and cornered Stiverne for a barrage of blows. Many of the punches landed for Arreola who forced Stiverne to hold on. But those body shots seemed to slow down the Mexican-American heavyweight every time.

“He fought a better plan and used a better jab,” said Arreola.

Arreola open up with a barrage of blows hoping to catch the Haitian with a solid shot, but the killing blow was not to come. Instead, Stiverne went back to the body and seemed to hurt Arreola with a left hook to the body. That was the last gasp for Arreola.

All three judges scored it for Stiverne 118-109 and 117-110 twice.

“I didn’t beat a bum,” said Stiverne. “I beat him in his own house.”

Other bouts

Eric Molina (20-2, 14 Kos) survived a last round knockdown from Tony Grano (20-3-1, 16 Kos) to win a unanimous decision after 12 rounds and win the NABF heavyweight title.

After a very slow start both heavyweights quickened the pace in the third round with Molina scoring a knockdown with a counter right cross at the end of round five. Grano survived the round but fell behind for the next few rounds to the taller fighter from Texas.

Molina used his height and quick right cross to control the fight, but Grano floored the stringy heavyweight with a perfect overhand right to the chin. Molina survived the next two minutes and won by unanimous decision 116-110 twice and 114-112.

Former Mexican Olympian Oscar Molina (5-0, 4 Kos) needed only 55 seconds to knock out Arizona’s Jose Martell (2-8-1) in a junior middleweight bout scheduled for four rounds. A double left hook to the body and head floored the Phoenix fighter. He was counted out by referee Pat Russell.

Paramount’s Charles Huerta (18-3, 10 Kos) knocked out veteran Jonathan Alcantara (6-10) at 1:30 of the first round. It was Huerta’s first fight on a Goossen-Tutor Promotions fight card. The featherweight is a former highly-ranked prospect looking to return to his former standards.

Tall southpaw featherweight Juan Funez (2-0) used a short right uppercut to begin the end for Christian Cartier (0-1) and ended it with a few more uppercuts that had him reeling. Referee Pat Russell stopped the fight before more damage could be done at 1:14 of round two.

Despite only one win in eight fights Juan Garcia (2-6-1, 2 Kos) came in with steam on his punches and upset Russian featherweight prospect Vladimir Gavrilov (1-1) with a right hand bomb in the first round. Gavrilov fought back hard but was dropped again in the third round. He beat the count but was met by a barrage of blows that forced referee Raul Caiz Jr. to stop the fight at 2:20 of round three.

 

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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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