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Kovalev-Mohammedi Tix Info

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Krusher to Face Mohammedi in His First Mandatory Title Defense Saturday, July 25

From Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino Televised Live on HBO

Tickets Go on Sale Tomorrow, May 27 at 10:00 AM PT

Krusher Kovalev

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

Las Vegas, NV:      Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (27-0-1, 24 KOs) the undefeated unified WBO, WBA and IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion will take on his first IBF mandatory contender Nadjib “Irondjib” Mohammedi (37-3, 23 KOs) on Saturday, July 25 at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino at the Mandalay Bay Events Center in Las Vegas, Nevada and televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing.  

Tickets priced at $300, $200, $100, $50 and $25, not including applicable tax and service fees, go on sale tomorrow, Wednesday, May 27 at 10 AM PT and will be available at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers and Ritmo Latino). To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000. Tickets also are available for purchase at mandalaybay.com or ticketmaster.com.

The Russian Wrecking Ball – Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev – is headlining in the storied fight town for the first time. The charismatic and unbeaten knockout artist boasts three current world title belts, 2014 Fighter of the Year honors from numerous publications and an astounding 89% knockout-to-win ratio. After capping off his impressive 2014 campaign with a unanimous decision win over the legendary Bernard Hopkins to unify the WBA and IBF belts with his WBO belt, he began 2015 with a thrilling eighth round knockout of former world champion Jean Pascal in Montreal. The Krusher is on his way to becoming one of boxing’s next big superstars.

Nadjib Mohammedi

Photo Credits: David Spagnolo/Main Events

Kovalev, the 32-year old from Chelyabinsk, Russia now residing in Fort Lauderdale, FL and Los Angeles, CA, said, “I am very excited to return to ring on July 25 and fight for Vegas fans. I love fighting on HBO and am happy for this next opportunity.”

Egis Klimas, Kovalev’s manager, added, “We are so happy to be back in the ring with HBO and Main Events’ help. This show will be televised live on HBO. Another good thing is Sergey will be able to fight in mega boxing city Las Vegas and start building as his home base fighting town. Thanks to people at Mandalay Bay for giving this opportunity to us.”

In the opposite corner, the IBF’s number one contender, Nadjib “Irondjib” Mohammedi will challenge Kovalev with his awkward and aggressive style. He earned this title shot with an exciting win over Anatoliy Dudchenko by TKO in an IBF elimination contest in June of last year. Mohammedi elected to wait as Kovalev unified the belts with Hopkins then took a voluntary defense against Pascal while he added some serious fire power to his corner – world renowned trainer Abel Sanchez. Sanchez, who trains middleweight champion Gennady “GGG” Golovkin and previously worked with Kovalev.

Nadjib, 30, is from Gardanne, Bouches-du-Rhone, France and trains in Big Bear Lake, California. He will be making his Las Vegas and HBO debuts. When asked about his mandatory fight with Kovalev, he said, “My turn has come to show the world who I am. I let this Kovalev beat some guys but now I will show you he ain’t no Krusher. I am smarter. I am faster. I am the next generation of light heavyweight real champions!”

Main Events CEO Kathy Duva, who promotes both pugilists, said, “This will be a great fight. Sergey had a little trouble with Jean Pascal’s awkward, aggressive style in March. Nadjib will bring a similar style to the ring on July 25th. He also has Abel Sanchez in his corner, who might have some inside knowledge about Kovalev. The Krusher will try to do what he does best – Krush him. We know for sure that this will be an all-action night at Mandalay Bay, where Main Events is very happy to return.”

“Fans who appreciate underdogs, respect Sergey Kovalev,” said Peter Nelson, Vice President, programming, HBO Sports. “As an amateur and professional, the unified light heavyweight champ has spent his entire life as an underdog, beating the odds as he does his ring opponents: with total domination. Now a new underdog, Nadjib Mohammedi, seeks to shock the boxing world and dethrone the light heavyweight king. July 25 in Las Vegas will be a great event.”

“This light heavyweight fight at Mandalay Bay will be a sensational matchup,” said Richard Sturm, President of Entertainment and Sports for MGM Resorts International. “We look forward to working with Kathy and her entire Main Events team as well as Peter Nelson and his HBO staff on this championship event.”

Undercard information will be announced shortly.

About Kovalev vs. Mohammedi

WBO, WBA and IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev (27-0-1, 24 KOs) will compete in his first mandatory title defense against Nadjib “Irondjib” Mohammedi (37-3, 23 KOs) on Saturday, July 25 at the Mandalay Bay Events Center, Las Vegas, Nevada. Tickets go on sale May 27 at 10:00 AM PT and start at $25. Tickets can be purchased through TicketMaster and all MGM Resorts Properties Ticket Offices. The fight will be telecast live on HBO World Championship Boxing® and undercard information will be released shortly.

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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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