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Jennings-Perez, Geale-Macklin Lands in Texas

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UNDEFEATED HEAVYWEIGHTS

BRYANT JENNINGS & MIKE PEREZ

COLLIDE IN A WBC HEAVYWEIGHT TITLE ELIMINATOR

AND

DANIEL GEALE BATTLES MATTHEW MACKLIN

SATURDAY, MAY 24, 2014

AMERICAN BANK CENTER in CORPUS CHRISTI, TEXAS

LIVE ON HBO®

Corpus Christ, Texas (April 17, 2014) Undefeated and top rated heavyweights BRYANT “By By” JENNINGS of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania and MIKE “The Rebel” PEREZ, fighting out of Cork, Ireland will clash in a World Boxing Council (‘WBC’) Heavyweight Title Eliminator on SATURDAY, MAY 24, at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texasand televised LIVE on HBO Boxing After Dark® beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT, it was announced today jointly by K2 Promotions and Gary Shaw Productions.

The winner of the 12-round bout will become the mandatory challenger for the WBC Heavyweight Title, which was vacated by longtime champion Vitali Klitschko earlier this year. Jennings and Perez are currently ranked #4 and #5, respectively by the sanctioning body.

Opening the telecast is a 10-round middleweight battle between two-time former world champion DANIEL “The Real Deal” Geale and perennial contender MATTHEW “Mack The Knife” MACKLIN.

“The world has been desperately seeking a heavyweight to take over the division and I believe that person is Me,” said Jennings. “By defeating Mike Perez, I will position myself as the mandatory position in the WBC. My promoter Gary Shaw ensures me that if I win this fight; I’ll be looking at a potential world title bout soon. My main focus is winning this fight against Perez and I’m doing everything in the gym to make that a reality. I’ll be ready to go come May 24th.

“My dream has always been to fight for the heavyweight championship,” said Perez.

“This has been my dream since I first started boxing and I have sacrificed a lot to get this opportunity. Jennings and I have been on crash course for a while and now with so much at risk I’m sure it will bring out the best in both of us. However, as good as Jennings is I will be victorious.”

“Mike Perez is a good fighter with an undefeated record and he is dangerous for any opponent,” said Gary Shaw. “But I feel my fighter Bryant Jennings has the athletic ability, the speed and movement to defeat him and is the all around better fighter. This is the type of fight the fans deserve, two undefeated guys putting it all on the line to get a world title shot, that’s what boxing is all about.”

Said Tom Loeffler of K2 Promotions, “It is rare to see two undefeated heavyweights once again risk their record in a fight like this featured on HBO. However there was no hesitation from either side when the WBC ordered this eliminator because both fighters want to fight for the WBC Heavyweight Championship of the World.”

“We feel that Mike is among the best heavyweights in the world and expect him to show that on May 24th against Bryant Jennings.”

“The WBC is proud to sanction the fight between Perez vs. Jennings as a final elimination fight as part of the WBC tournament in the Heavyweight division,” stated Mauricio Sulaiman of the World Boxing Council.

“Vitali Klitschko was honored with the Emeritus Champion distinction after he decided to search his dream of becoming President of his country Ukraine and is being regarded as a hero by many.”

“The WBC ordered a tournament between all top rated fighters to fight and Perez vs. Jennings will prove to be a formidable match to find the second mandatory contender of the WBC Heavyweight division.“

The 29-year-old Jennings, 18-0-0 (10KO’s) is coming off his career best victory, a sensational, HBO televised tenth round knockout of Poland’s Artur Szpilka on JANUARY 25 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. Dominating the action from the outset, Jennings dropped the crafty southpaw in the sixth before finishing him off in the final round.

A highly successful amateur in his native Cuba, the 29-year-old Perez has compiled a record of 20-0-1 (12KO’s), since moving to Ireland and turning professional in 2008.

Perez has made two previous appearances on HBO, on NOVEMBER 2, against Magomed Abdusalamov from Madison Square Garden in New York City and more recently facing Carlos Takam on JANUARY 18 from the Bell Centre in Montreal, Canada.

Hailing from New South Wales, Australia and sporting a record of30-2-0 (16KO’s), the 32-year-old Geale previously held the WBA and IBF middleweight titles. Most recently Geale stopped fellow countryman Garth Wood in the sixth round on FEBRUARY 19 in New South Wales, Australia.

Former world title challenger Macklin of Birmingham, England has had an illustrious 12-year career having compiled a record of 30-5-0 (20KO’s).

Despite suffering a third round stoppage at the hands of middleweight world champion Gennady Golovkin on JUNE 29, 2013, Macklin stormed back into the world rankings with a dominant ten round unanimous decision over then undefeated Lamar Russ on DECEMBER 7 in Atlantic City, Jersey. Both of these bouts were telecast on HBO.

“I can’t wait to make my return on HBO and fight Mathew Macklin,” said Geale. “I'm keen to prove I am still one of the best middleweights in the world. Macklin is a very tough opponent who likes to go to war, as do I,our clash of styles could make afight that steals the show. I will confirm my status as one of the top fighters in the division with a victory. When I win, I still wantto fight Golovkin, if he comes back to 160, or the winner of Sturm vs. Solomon.”

Said Macklin, “I'm really excited about the fight with Daniel Geale. He's a good fighter, a former world champion, and he throws a lot of punches like me so I'm expecting it to be a tough, action-packed fight. After the Golovkin fight, the win over Russ got me back on track and a much-needed 10 rounds of work. Winning on May 24th against Geale will throw me back into the world title mix, so in many ways this is almost a world title eliminator. It's a great fight between two of the best and most exciting middleweights in the world.”

“Most people are saying that this is a 50/50 fight. I don't know Geale personally but he seems like a good guy and I respect him as a fighter for what he has achieved and accomplished in his career. That being said though, I always believed he was tailor made for me and there only going to be one winner on May 24th and that is me.”

The Geale/Macklin bout is presented in association with DiBella Entertainment and Grange Old School Boxing.

The American Bank Center is located 1901 N. Shoreline Blvd. in Corpus Christi, Texas. For further information please visit their website at www.AmericanBankCenter.com

Advance ticket information and further details on this event will be announced shortly.

For fight updates on JENNINGS VS. PEREZ via Social Media, follow HBO Boxing on Twitter at @HBOBoxing and Facebook at /HBOBoxing, Bryant Jennings on Twitter at @BYJennings, Tom Loeffler/K2 Promotions at @TomLoeffler1 and Gary Shaw Productions at @GaryShawBoxing. Use the hashtag #JenningsPerez to join the conversation on Twitter.

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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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