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Quillin Blasts Out Zerafa on NBC/PBC Show in CT.

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Mashantucket, Conn. — Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin is sick of answering the same question.

You know the one.

Was it really a good move to give up your WBO middleweight title and a million dollar plus payday against Matt Korobov to follow boxing’s Pied Piper, Al Haymon, into an unknown fistic future?

According to Quillin, it definitely was. “When somebody can revive boxing the way he’s done, you have to respect that,” Quillin told me in regards to the controversial figure.

In his second fight under the Premier Boxing Champions (PBC) banner, Quillin (Brooklyn, NY, 160, 32-0-1, 23 KOs) now beltless and coming off a disputed draw against current WBO middleweight champion Andy Lee, took on an unknown Australian named Michael Zerafa, Melbourne, Australia (162, 17-2, 9 KOs) at Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, Connecticut on Saturday afternoon at the Grand Theater, formerly known as the MGM Grand Foxwoods.

It was a showcase fight for Quillin and he shined brightly as the powerful puncher that he still is. Scrappy but not terribly skilled, Zerafa managed to avoid a patient Quillin’s power early in the fight, even landing a hard right hand and an uppercut in the third round that got Quillin’s attention and won the underdog the round on my card from press row. As the pace picked up in the fourth, Quillin began to pick his opponent off with the jab and sneaky left hooks. In the fifth, an entertaining fist fight finally broke out and Quillin took his chance to pounce, pulverizing Zerafa with a clubbing right hand on the ropes that sent the Aussie down and out, flat on his back, where he was taken from the ring on a yellow stretcher that matched his bright ring attire. The official time of the scary knockout was 1:06 of the fifth.

The winner then jaw-jacked back and forth with “regular” WBA middleweight champion Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs, seated ringside as an announcer for PBC, and the pair are reportedly scheduled to tussle December 5 at the Barclays Center in Brooklyn, this according to promoter Lou DiBella.

During the post-fight presser, Quillin was handed a cell phone by DiBella and on the other end was his battered opponent, Michael Zerafa, calling from the local hospital to say that he was fine. The fighters exchanged pleasantries before an emotional Quillin reminded the media in attendance that boxing is a sport and that the last thing he wants to do is hurt somebody permanently.

The card, aired on NBC television and promoted by DiBella Entertainment, also featured an IBF super welterweight championship title fight between the aging champion Cornelius “K9” Bundrage (Detroit, MI, 153, 34-6, 19 KOs) and undefeated upstart challenger Jermall Charlo (Houston, TX, 153, 22-0, 17 KOs), the twin brother of Jermell Charlo, and boxing fans can be excused if they can’t tell the pair apart.

The brothers look incredibly similar and both have recently seen world title opportunities slip through their fingers. Not to be outdone, Charlo did his best to distinguish himself from his own kin as early as the first round with a chopping right hand that sent Bundrage crashing to the canvas with a stunned look of shock on his face. Charlo pressed his overwhelming speed advantage in the second round, scoring another knockdown against the defending champion, this time off a short left hook. The in-ring disaster for Bundrage continued unabated into the third round, which saw Charlo nearly blow “K9” out of the ring with two more knockdowns, the second of which caused referee John Callas to call a halt at 2:33.

With the dominating knockout victory, Charlo is now the IBF junior middleweight champion and he put the entire 154 pound division on notice that he is a true force to be reckoned with. “I am the future of boxing,” proclaimed the proud new champion in the ring with his brother Jermell by his side. After an impressive performance like that on network television, he might just be right. Said the defeated but upbeat 42 year-old ex-champion, “You win some and you lose some.”

In the third televised fight of the day, Hugo Centeno (Oxnard, CA, 161, 23-0, 12 KOs) defeated Lukasz Maciec (Lublin, Poland, 159, 22-3-1, 5 KOs) by unanimous decision in an eight rounder. Neat and tidy, Centeno resembles polished junior welterweight Jose Benavidez in the ring and he used his advantages in size and skill to outpoint his plodding Polish opponent by score of 79-73, 79-73, and 78-74.

Undercard Results: Super featherweight Gary Stark Jr. (Staten Island, NY, 25-3, 8 KOs) defeated Anthony Napunyi (Kenya, 15-16, 8 KOs) by six round unanimous decision (59-55, 58-56, 58-56) in the opening bout of the afternoon. Bantamweight prospect Antonio “Another” Russell (Washington, DC, 4-0, 3 KOs) overwhelmed Manuel Rubalcava (Mexico, 2-15) to score a second round knockout at 1:26. Super featherweight Titus Williams (Elmont, NY, 2-0, 1 KO) crushed Benjamin Burgos (New York, NY, 2-13-1) with an overhand right for the knockout in the first round of a scheduled four.

Light heavyweight Marcus Browne (Staten Island, NY, 16-0, 12 KOs) blasted out a faded Gabriel Campillo (Madrid, Spain, 25-8-1, 12 KOs) in the first round with an impressive display of power, scoring two knockdowns to bring about a compassionate stoppage from Arthur Mercante Jr. at :55 of the first. Campillo, who came in overweight by two pounds, hasn’t been the same since he was crushed by Sergey Kovalev in 2013 at nearby Mohegan Sun.

Female super bantamweight sensation Shelito Vincent (Providence, RI, 15-0, 1 KO) outworked and outclassed Brittany Cruz (Thornton, CO, 10-7-2-2) over the eight round distance, winning by unanimous decision. Cruz came to the ring with a smirk on her face but Vincent managed to wipe it off with a methodical attack on the inside of her taller, leaner opponent.

Super featherweight Bryant Cruz (Port Chester, NY, 16-0, 8 KOs) defeated Jonathan Perez (Columbia, 33-13) by a wide eight round unanimous decision in an entertaining scrap that went off in the ring after the NBC broadcast ended. Fans who stuck around saw a nice little fight to end the night. Perez thought he won the bout and so did a few folks seated at ringside.

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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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