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Wilder Says He Won’t Give Up Crown




“Everybody knows that Deontay Wilder gets the job done. I worked too hard to get here to just give up the belt. I want all the belts, I’m greedy like that.” — Deontay Wilder

“When my dream becomes a reality on Saturday, I’ll come right back here and give Wilder the rematch.” – Eric Molina



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Photo Credit: Stephanie Trapp/SHOWTIME

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BIRMINGHAM, Ala. (June 11, 2015) – Two days before the first-ever world title fight in the state of Alabama, undefeated heavyweight world champion Deontay “The Bronze Bomber” Wilder and challenger Eric Molina participated in a tense final press conference Thursday at Embassy Suites in Birmingham.

The hard-hitting Wilder (33-0, 32 KOs), of Tuscaloosa, Ala, will be making the first defense of the heavyweight title he won impressively from Bermane Stiverne in January, when he meets Molina (23-2, 17 KOs), of Lyford, Texas, this Saturday, June 13, in the main event on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® live on SHOWTIME (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) from the Bartow Arena in Birmingham, Ala.

In the co-feature on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING, undefeated Jose “The Sniper” Pedraza (19-0, 12 KOs), of Cidra, Puerto Rico, will be opposed by Andrey Klimov (19-1, 9 KOs), of Klimovski, Russia, in a 12-rounder for the vacant IBF Junior Lightweight World Championship.

In the main event on SHOWTIME BOXING on SHO EXTREME®, undefeated world-ranked contenders Ivan “El Terrible” Redkach and Dejan “El Dinamita” Zlaticanin will square off in a 12-round eliminator. The winner between Redkach (18-0, 1 ND, 14 KOs), of Los Angeles, and Zlaticanin (16-0, 9 KOs), of Montenegro, becomes the mandatory challenger to Jorge Linares, the WBC 135-pound world champion.

Opening the SHO EXTREME telecast, unbeaten top 10-ranked super welterweight Julian “J Rock” Williams (19-0-1, 11 KOS, 1 ND), of Philadelphia, will be opposed by Armenia’s Armen Ovsepyan (14-4, 11 KOs), of Glendale, Calif., in an eight-round bout. Time permitting, hard-hitting light heavyweights Ahmed Elbiali (10-0, 9 KOs, 1-1 WSB), of Miami, Fla, and Donta Woods (8-4, 7 KOs), of Atlanta, will collide in a four/six-round swing match.

Below is what the fighters and Hall of Fame promoter Don King had to say today:

DEONTAY WILDER, Heavyweight World Champion

“I’m thankful to everybody who has put together this great event. This is a dream come true for me. When I made my dream to become undisputed heavyweight champion of the world, I wanted to do something to change the Alabama sports landscape.

“People wanted me to rush my career, even I did at some points, but I’m a man who believes in timing and that there’s a moment when things should happen. We have to wait for our time.

“This is my destiny. Once I had my precious daughter she changed my life forever and she became my motivation to get here. She’s the reason I go hard in the gym, she’s the reason I carry myself the way I do.

“I worked too hard to get to this position. We’re not planning on this being the end.

“It’s a privilege to make history with the first world title fight in Alabama, in any division. I’ve been about making history my entire career since the amateurs.

“I love to fight, I love this sport. They say you have to eat, sleep and breathe it and I do. I’m never out of shape. This is my life.

“Everybody knows that Deontay Wilder gets the job done. I worked too hard to get here to just give up the belt. I want all the belts, I’m greedy like that.

“We respect Eric Molina and what he’s trying to do. It’s a great opportunity for him. I was once where he was, in my last fight.”

ERIC MOLINA, Heavyweight Contender

“I want to thank all the people of Alabama, who have made me feel right at home this week. My training team has been incredible.

“I’ve had Oliver McCall in my camp for four years, and he’s prepped me for my moment to shock the world, just like he did against Lennox Lewis.

“I’ve dreamed about that moment, I’ve thought about it since even before I got this fight. I was going to knock someone out and become heavyweight champion of the world. It seemed so real to me in my mind, and when we signed the fight it all came together.

“Everybody has written me off. I’ve never been undefeated and I’ve always been the underdog.

“When my dream becomes a reality on Saturday, I’ll come right back here and give Wilder the rematch.”

JOSE PEDRAZA, Undefeated Junior Lightweight Contender

“I’m very happy about this opportunity. I’m not worried about the big stage because I’ve been on the big stage before. I’ve been in the big fights before and I just want to make the most of this opportunity.

“It’s been a long camp this time but other than that there has been nothing different in training. It’s been the same great preparations as all my other fights.

“I have a different level of skills than Klimov. I’m fast and I can do it all. Right and left handed, you’ll see all my skills on Saturday.

“This means a lot to me and to the people of Puerto Rico. They want another champion and I’m going to be next. This is the most important fight of my career and I’m going to give it my all in there.

“Whoever says they don’t get butterflies before a big fight is lying, but I’ve been on this stage before so I know how to control them. One that bell rings I’m going for it.”

ANDREY KLIMOV, Junior Lightweight Contender

“I’ve been fighting in the U.S. for five years. I turned pro a little late but I always knew that I had the chance to be a world champion.

“Coming in as an underdog is nothing new to me. It’s happened over and over. I’m going to be there to fight, I’ll never give up.

“The loss was a learning experience. It was my first time under the real bright lights. I took the fight because I wanted to prove something. I was upset because I knew I could do better.

“People are going to talk about me differently after I win this world title. I’ve worked together great with my team. All the bumps in the road have gotten us to here.

“Pedraza was a great amateur and a very good fighter. Everyone at this level is a good fighter. If you look at who we fought, my level of competition has been much higher.”

JULIAN WILLIAMS, Undefeated Junior Middleweight Contender

“We had a very tough training camp. It seems like Ovsepyan comes forward a lot and throws a lot of punches. I’m going to just keep it simple, use the jab and work punches off of that.

“I haven’t thought about any other opponents besides Ovsepyan for the past three or four weeks because he’s the guy that I’m fighting, he’s the guy that’s gloved up. Nobody else will be in that ring besides him on Saturday night, so he is who I am worried about.

“I definitely tailor my training camp based on the opponent I will be fighting. I get certain guys to come in and spar with me that have similar fighting styles and body types as my opponent. I try to get the closest thing to my opponent in my sparring partners so that I can get a good feel for what the fight will be like.”

ARMEN OVSEPYAN, Junior Middleweight Contender

“I’m feeling prepared, boxed over 60 rounds for this fight and I’m definitely ready to go.

“I’m a fighter; I take hard fights, that’s what real fighters do.

“He’s very well-regarded but we’ll see how he likes it when I put a lot of pressure on him from the start. We both have two hands, I can win this fight.

“It’s going to be the best fight of the night, whether we need to go the distance or if we get the knockout early.”

IVAN REDKACH, Undefeated Lightweight Contender

“I’m excited for this; I’m never scared of the big moment. June 13 is going to be the most important date of my career.

“I’ve been in camp for four months and feel 120 percent that I’m ready to fight.

“My opponent always tries to go forward and is very strong. He’s always trying to throw, sometimes weird punches from bottom to side to top.

“I have harder fights ahead of me but we’ll see after this one if this is my toughest test so far.

“I’m very happy for this chance to fight on SHOWTIME, my teammates have prepared me very well for this and I’m excited.”

DEJAN ZLATICANIN, Lightweight Contender

“I’m not a novice, I’ve been around and I know how to fight. I’m strong and I’m not afraid to come forward. I know Ivan is the same way, so you know it’s going to be a great fight.

“In my mind, I’ve already seen Ivan knocked out. I’ve seen it happen and I’m going to see it again on Saturday.

“I’m going to come to work hard. I come from a small country in Montenegro and I’m not here to give anything away, I’m taking full advantage.”

DON KING, Hall Of Fame Promoter

“We’re going to have a terrific fight here in Alabama on Saturday night.

“Deontay Wilder has proven to be a tremendous fighter and he last proved it on January 17. I’m certain that Wilder doesn’t mean to transfer the belt like Bermane Stiverne did.

“Texans have an out of the box way of thinking, they just take what they want. You’re going to have an unstoppable force against the unmovable object. Only one will win.”


2015 Fight of the Year – Francisco Vargas vs Takashi Miura



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



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



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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