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Gulyakevich Seeks Upset of Redkach on ESPN

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SERGEY GULYAKEVICH LOOKING TO SEND SHOCKWAVES THROUGH THE LIGHTWEIGHT DIVISION WITH AN UPSET VICTORY OVER HIGHLY REGARDED REDKACH ON FRIDAY NIGHT

IVAN REDKACH VS. SERGEY GULYAKEVICH

HEADLINES ESPN FRIDAY NIGHT FIGHTS

JUNE 27TH AT THE AMERISTAR CASINO

IN ST. CHARLES, MO

New York, NY / St. Charles, MO (6/23/14) – Next Friday night, DiBella Entertainment and Rumble Time Promotions, in association with Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing, will present that week’s edition of ESPNFriday Night Fights/ESPN Deportes’ Noce de Combates from the beautiful Ameristar Casino in St. Charles, MO. Headlining the card will be red-hot lightweight contender Ivan “El Terribel” Redkach (16-0, 13KO’s) putting his undefeated record on the line against former title challenger Sergey “The Surgeon” Gulyakevich (41-2, 17KO’s) in the 10-round main event of the evening.

While many are picking Redkach, the IBF #8, WBC #9, and reigning USBA lightweight champion, to steamroll right through him, the Belarusian has other plans for his US national TV debut.

“I have had an absolutely great training camp for this fight. I was scheduled to fight in Hungary on the 15th, so I was already in heavy training when I got the call. When the fight with Ivan was offered, I didn’t hesitate for a minute to accept. I know that he’s got tremendous power in both hands and he can also box well, which he demonstrated in his last fight against Tony Luis. I respect him and do not underestimate him at all,” said Gulyakevich.

The 33-year-old Belarus-native has only lost two fights during his 11-plus year career; a technical decision loss to then 22-1 Alex Arthur in 2006 and a 12-round majority decision loss to then-interim WBC super featherweight champion Humberto Mauro Gutierrez in the titlist’s home country of Mexico back in 2009. Since the loss to Gutierrez, Gulyakevich has moved up in weight and put together a 15-bout winning streak, waiting for an opportunity to show that he is one of the best 135lb. fighters in the world.

“After I fought for the title, I had some political and managerial issues. I lost the opportunity to fight for the IBF super featherweight title, which was offered to me in 2012, and I was just having major difficulties securing big fights. Then I met my current manager Derek Waddell and things started looking up. He got me seven keep-busy fights in Latvia and then we signed with Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing as we looked to make a name for ourselves here in the US. Over the last 12 months, I have had three significant fights fall through, first to Billy Dib, then against Will Tomlinson and finally against Terrence Crawford, so when the call to fight Ivan came through, I was just so thrilled and excited for the opportunity. I want to thank Ivan and his promotional company DiBella Entertainment for stepping up to the plate and giving me this opportunity. Both Ivan and I know that the winner of this fight will be knocking on the door for a title shot, and we are going to lay it all on the line Friday night,” stated Gulyakevich.

While Gulyakevich is confident going into the fight, he knows that come Friday night, this will not be an easy fight for him or Redkach.

“I have never been knocked down in my entire career,” said Gulyakevich. “My coach and I have watched a ton of film on Ivan and we have what we feel is a perfect game plan going into this matchup. Ivan showed in his last bout that he is not just a one-trick pony, so we have to be ready for whatever he brings. Like I said before, the winner of this bout is knocking on a world title opportunity and I know that everyone involved realizes the significance of this fight for the 135lb. division. Ivan and his team realize for him to get to the next level, he needs to have a step-up fight like this. I am ready and I know he will be ready as well. Talk is cheap in this sport, everyone will witness on Friday night who is the better fighter.”

ESPN will begin live coverage at 9p.m. ET on ESPN2, ESPN Deportes and WatchESPN.

Tickets are currently on sale and are priced at $80 for ringside and $40 for general admission. Tickets can be purchased by calling (800) 293-5949, or by visiting www.metrotix.com. Doors open at 5p.m. CT with the first bout scheduled for 6p.m. CT.

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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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