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News On: Tupou, Fonfara, Oscar, Cotto, Trout Classics, More



LAS VEGAS – Heavyweight boxer, Bowie Tupou, 22-2, 16 KOs, has traveled many miles over the course of his lifetime. He was born in the South Pacific Kingdom of Tonga, grew up in Australia, moved to Los Angeles for his boxing career, then relocated to Las Vegas to improve his chances as a professional fighter. Next week, Tupou will log another 2,500 miles when he travels from Vegas to Philadelphia for the biggest fight of his boxing career, a December 8th match with Philly's Bryant Jennings, 15-0, 7 KOs, for the latter's USBA heavyweight championship. The 12-round main event will be nationally televised by NBC Sports Network as part of its Fight Night boxing series. The telecast will begin at 10PM ET.

Tupou lived in Tonga until he was eleven years old.

“It's just one little island,” Tupou said of his homeland. “It's not that big. You can walk the whole country, the whole island, in half a day.”

His family left Tonga for Australia in 1993. Bowie, one of six children, spent his early days playing sports, and attending school. “When you're young, you just want to do something to keep active,” he said. “I was playing a bit of rugby. That's mostly what we do in Australia.”

Eventually he became a professional rugby player, but that career didn't last long. He found himself running around with his friends and not really applying himself to the sport.

“I didn't play professional for that long,” he said. “I was just hanging around with my buddies not really focused on what I was supposed to do. Suddenly I found life was not going the way I planned.”

Tupou wasn't getting himself in any real trouble, but he didn't feel like he was growing up either. Eventually he met the woman who would become his wife, Georgia, also a Tongan living in Australia. She became a catalyst for many things in Tupou's life.

“I proposed to my wife when I was 19,” Tupou said. “I wanted to stay out of trouble, and I needed to straighten out my life. That's why I married so young. I settled down. It was something to keep me straight.”

Married and working various construction jobs, Tupou was putting food on the table and living a rather settled life, but he was still getting into an occasional street fight. That's when his wife pointed him in a life-changing direction.

“Why don't you go try out boxing?”, Georgia asked him. “It may help you mentally.”
“I was a physical guy,” Tupou said. “So I said, okay, I'll have a go at it.”

Georgia had grown up in the same neighborhood as legendary boxing trainer Johnny Lewis, instructor of Down Under ring greats like Kostya Tsyzu and Jeff Fenech. So she made the introduction.

“I started with Johnny Lewis,” Tupou said. “Once I started training, I said, 'Oh Yeah! I kind of like this'. So I always tell everybody that my wife talked me into boxing.”

Lewis insisted that the sometimes unfocused young Tupou dedicate himself to training for at least one year before scheduling any fights. Bowie complied, patiently working and applying himself as he'd never done before. The young version of himself probably would have grown restless waiting around for a match, but Tupou was a becoming a new man.

“There's a lot to learn in boxing,” he said. “You're not going to pick up boxing in one day. It takes time. In fact, you never stop learning about boxing.”

So after a year's “apprenticeship” in the gym, Tupou finally got into the ring for the first time as an amateur boxer.

“I didn't have a long amateur career,” Tupou said. “I only had one amateur fight. Then he (Lewis) put me through to the pros.”

Tupou rattled off nine straight victories as a professional in Australia. However, he kept working his construction job on the side, learning that boxing paydays in Australia are nothing to live on. It was at this point, 2007, that Tupou and his wife packed their bags and moved to Los Angeles.

He found his way to Freddie Roach's Wild Card Gym and resumed his boxing career in the States.

“California, it was a new experience for me,” Tupou said. “A different lifestyle, but I knew my purpose. I knew the reason I came here.”

And so Bowie continued to fight and to win. The restless teenager was nowhere in sight. Tupou was living the life of a professional boxer and finally had a real goal to pursue.

“That is the dream of every fighter out there,” he said. “To win the heavyweight title.”

Four years ago, Tupou moved his base to Las Vegas and began working with Jeff Mayweather, the low-key link in the wild and wooly Mayweather boxing clan. Although he is still learning his trade, the time has come for him to make a real move toward his dream. Enter Bryant Jennings, and the December 8th title fight.

“I don't know much about him,” Tupou said of his opponent. “But I know he has the USBA title. It will be a good fight. It will be a good night. And as they say, let the best man win.”
Tupou's hard-earned maturity won't allow him to trash-talk the least bit.

“Anything can happen during the fight,” he said. “My wish and my dream is to win this fight and to move on. We will both fight our fight and we'll see who wins on that night. It should be a good night.”

LOS ANGELES, November 21 – Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto returns to his home away from home on December 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York City where he will challenge Austin Trout for his WBA Super Welterweight World Championship. Before this meeting of champions in the “Mecca of Boxing,” FOX Deportes Classics delivers two of these fighters' most impressive victories on Saturday, November 24 at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT.

First, the Classics will go back to February 5, 2011 when Trout shocked the boxing world by defeating Canelo Alvarez' brother, Rigoberto Alvarez for the WBA Interim Super Welterweight crown. Then, the main event showcases Cotto as he entered the ring at Madison Square Garden on November 10, 2007 in an exciting 12-round welterweight championship bout against fellow superstar Sugar Shane Mosley.

In one of 2007's most highly-anticipated fights, Cotto and Mosley gave fight fans everything they expected and more. The two battled back and forth for 12 fast-paced rounds, exchanging explosive shots before Cotto pulled out a close, but unanimous decision to retain his WBA Welterweight title for the third time.

Previously only known to the hardcore fight crowd, Trout announced his arrival to the rest of the world in February of 2011, when he traveled to Guadalajara, Jalisco, Mexico to defeat the favored hometown favorite Alvarez and capture his first world championship belt. He has since defended that belt three times, setting up December's title defense against Cotto.

LOS ANGELES, November 21 – When the madness of Black Friday subsides on Friday, November 23, boxing fans will be treated to a night of boxing classics on FOX Deportes as Golden Boy Promotions presents four of the most memorable bouts of this era beginning at 7:00 p.m. ET/4:00 p.m. PT.

The main event of the evening will showcase the two-fight series between “The Golden Boy” Oscar De La Hoya and Mexican legend Julio Cesar Chavez with replays of their 1996 and 1998 battles. Plus, the telecast will revisit one of boxing's great rivalries with the two middle bouts of the action packed four-fight series between Mexican countrymen Israel “El Magnifico” Vazquez and Rafael “Rafa” Marquez.

It was a clash between the young gun and the old lion when unbeaten superstar De La Hoya and one of Mexico's true boxing greats Chavez met in Las Vegas on June 7, 1996. The highly anticipated and memorable battle was a short one as a severe cut suffered by Chavez gave De La Hoya a fourth round technical knockout victory. Two years later, on September 18, 1998, the two met again in one of the biggest fights of that year, with “The Golden Boy” again emerging victorious over the Hall of Famer, this time by an eighth round stoppage.

After meeting once in March of 2007, with Marquez halting Vazquez in seven rounds, Vazquez was eager for a payback in their second meeting. He got his chance on August 4, 2007 when he scored a stirring sixth round technical knockout win over his countryman in a bout voted 2007 “Fight of the Year” by The Ring Magazine. Now with the score even, Vazquez would pull ahead in the series on March 1, 2008 with a 12 round split decision win in another thrilling “Fight of the Year” which came down to the final seconds of the last round, solidifying Marquez's and Vazquez's rivalry in the boxing history books.

CHICAGO, IL (November 21, 2012) Chicago’s Polish Prince, Andrzej Fonfara is making big plans for 2013 following his seventh round stoppage of Tommy Karpency this past Friday night, NOVEMBER 16 at the UIC Pavilion.

Fighting in front of a huge crowd of 4,224, Fonfara drilled Karpency to the canvas twice in the first round enroute to the victory earning the IBO Light Heavyweight World Title.

Thought at first that Fonfara may have broken his right hand in the first round, following a full doctor’s exam, medical reports indicate no broken bones and he is expected to return to action in the first quarter of 2013.

“We’re very proud of Andrzej, this was another test and he passed with flying colors winning the IBO title in front of such a massive crowd,” said Frank Mugnolo, President of Round 3 Productions.

‘There was some confusion at the end but the truth is Karpency never fully recovered from the damage Andrzej inflicted upon him in the first round. The film crew caught him in the corner before the seventh round telling his corner that he was done. When he fell it was from the effects of the knockdowns in the first round as well as the continuous battle over the subsequent rounds. “

The bout was stopped at 0:57 mark of the seventh round when Karpency informed referee Pete Podgorski that he could not continue and Fonfara was awarded the TKO victory.

“We’re looking at a number of options for Andrzej. There has been some talk of fighting WBO champion Nathan Cleverly or WBA champion Beibut Shumenov. He’s ready for either one or a fight against Bernard Hopkins. Any one of those fights would draw sold out crowds at the UIC Pavilion.”

The next 8 Count Productions/Round 3 Productions event will take place on Friday, DECEMBER 14th at Cicero Stadium in Cicero, IL. The main event will feature a junior welterweight cross-town showdown between Adrian “EL Tigre” Granados and Antonio “Aztec God of War” Canas.


Three Punch Combo: What’s in the Cards for Spence, Kell Brook, and Cotto?



 THREE PUNCH COMBO: Errol Spence Jr. scored an impressive knockout victory against Kell Brook on Saturday to take Brook’s IBF welterweight title. Both fighters now face interesting possibilities as they move forward in their respective careers.

Spence, who entered the fight with a lot of questions, not only showcased his tremendous skills but proved he has a very good chin as well as the willingness to dig deep when needed. He is without a doubt a future superstar in this sport. With momentum strong right now, he would be wise to be as active as possible even if not landing one of the big names his next time out.

I sense that Spence’s advisor, Al Haymon, will in fact get him back in the ring this summer. One name I would speculate as an opponent is Adrian Granados. Coming off a debatable loss to Adrien Broner, Granados has earned another shot at a top fighter. Granados is not a big puncher, but will put forth a good effort. The translation here is that he is someone that can be sold to the public as an opponent for Spence while bigger names are lined up, and also someone against whom Spence can in all likelihood look impressive once again.

After a summer tilt, I would expect to see Spence back in action towards the end of the year in a more substantial fight. Keith Thurman will still be on the mend at this point, recovering from elbow surgery, so that fight is out until next year. But Haymon has plenty of other welterweights and one that I suspect he steers toward Spence will be Lamont Peterson. Peterson is a name and has a belt. He also has a stated desire to want one of the big names next along with the payday that it would command. With Thurman out, this would seem the likely immediate path for Spence as such a fight would draw plenty of attention and be easy to sell.

As for Brook, he is going to need an extensive rest before restarting his career. He suffered a beating as well as an eye injury in September against Gennady Golovkin and then suffered another beating as well as injuring his other eye against Spence. After a rest, expect to see a tune- up bout followed by a massive fight in the UK against Amir Khan. The Khan fight has always been big and one of the reasons it has not been made is that it could frankly be made anytime with it still being a very significant event. Considering where both fighters are presently in their respective careers, the timing seems right for it to happen sooner rather than later. They both get a big payday and the winner gets well positioned for another big payday in what is a loaded territory at welterweight and junior middleweight.

Errol Spence Jr. and Kell Brook gave us a great fight on Saturday. While their career paths will head in different directions, expect to see both involved in big events once again down the road.

 Miguel Cotto’s Future

 Miguel Cotto announced this week that he would be returning to the ring on August 26th to face Japanese brawler Yoshihiro Kamegai for the vacant WBO junior middleweight championship. Cotto, who split from his promoter Roc Nation last week, will work with Golden Boy Promotions for this fight which will be televised by HBO.

This is an interesting development in the career of Cotto. Reportedly HBO had not been interested in televising the proposed Kamegai fight unless it received assurances from Cotto that it would lead to a bigger fight to be televised by the network. Also, Golden Boy’s involvement in the promotion signals that they could be involved in Cotto’s future. Obviously, this would mean the opponent for a big fight for Cotto would come from under the Golden Boy banner.

The obvious choice for Cotto’s big fight opponent is David Lemieux. Lemieux has been chasing a fight with Canelo Alvarez. However, with Alvarez deciding to go after Gennady Golovkin, Lemieux gets left on the outside looking in. In need of a big fight for Lemieux, Golden Boy saw an opportunity with Cotto having been previously negotiating the Kamegai fight with Roc Nation. A fight between Cotto and Lemieux makes sense for both as Cotto wants a name who isn’t a slick boxer and Lemieux wants a big fight with the payday it commands as well as the opportunity to put a signature win on his resume to bolster his future ambitions.

But I also think Golden Boy has another potential plan for Cotto. Golden Boy’s main cash cow, Canelo Alvarez, is in a high risk, high reward fight with Golovkin in September. There is no rematch clause if Alvarez wins and, of course, a win by Alvarez cements him as a mega star in the sport. He will be eyeing a return in May 2018 during Cinco de Mayo weekend. With momentum behind him, Alvarez would be wise to seek a name opponent to further boost the event. A rematch with Cotto would not only do huge business but keep the momentum going. For Cotto, it would be a chance to avenge the loss from 2015 to Alvarez and give him one massive payday as his career nears a conclusion.

Miguel Cotto is determined to close his career out with something big and it appears likely he will get his wish.

Kudos to Golden Boy

 When Golden Boy announced its new series on ESPN this winter, I was cautiously optimistic in the fights they would produce. I must say that the matchmaking thus far on this series has been superb and is getting even better with some recently announced cards. These are the types of televised shows the sport needs to generate some badly needed positive buzz.

On June 17th, Pablo Cesar Cano takes on Fidel Maldonado in a junior welterweight contest. This fight is not only very evenly matched but can’t be anything except a slugfest given the styles of the two fighters. Cano is a high pressure fighter who is willing to exchange to get his own punches home. Maldonado has the ability to box, but often gets drawn willingly into wars. In 2015, he had a back and forth shootout with Amir Iman in a fight that got some talk in fight of the year chatter. As a matter of fact, round three was probably round of the year that year. Maldonado has a tendency to fire back when he gets hit and with Cano’s style Maldonado is going to get hit a lot. This one is guaranteed action and a perfect fight for television.

About two weeks later, Golden Boy returns with another ESPN card featuring a high stakes junior featherweight contest between Randy Caballero and Oscar Negrete. Caballero is an undefeated former bantamweight belt holder and is a very skilled boxer puncher. Negrete, also undefeated, has shown much improvement inside the ring in his last few contests. The styles of these two should mix well to provide an entertaining fight. It is also evenly matched, and with so much at stake we should see the best of both men inside the ring.

One point I harp on a lot is the importance of good matchmaking, especially in televised fights. Golden Boy is doing an excellent job so far with their new ESPN series providing high quality, well-matched fights. The boxing public is taking notice and Golden Boy deserves much praise in delivering excellent events for the fans.

Check out more boxing news on video at The Boxing Channel.

IBF welterweight title

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Canada & Usa

George Foreman Youth Center in Houston Hosts Amateur Event



George Foreman Youth Center

George Foreman Youth Center –  -Starting with the ring of the bell on October 22nd, local area boxers will be fighting for a spot to represent the Gulf Coast Region at the USA Boxing National Championships & in International Travel.

Weight categories will include: Pee Wee 8-9, Bantam 10-11, Intermediate 12-13, Juniors 14-15, Youth 15-16, & Elite 18-40 in both Open and Novice divisions. Winners will represent the Gulf area at the 2016 USA Boxing Elite, Youth and Junior National Championships to be held in Kansas City Missouri December 4-10, 2016. This tournament is a sanctioned event through USA Boxing the National Governing Body of Amateur Boxing and is a feeder to National and Olympic recognition.

The George Foreman Youth and Community Center was founded 32 years ago in 1984 by Olympic Gold Medalist and 2-time heavy weight champion George Foreman. The GFYCC is dedicated to providing a safe and secure location for youth to participate in sports and after school activities.

“This year for the first time in Houston boxing history, we are developing an elite international youth boxing team,” said George Foreman, IV. “The team will be selected for the sole purpose of training and traveling to other countries to gain experience on an international platform and promote cultural diplomacy! Utilizing grant and donor funding this team will be representing the George Foreman Youth and Community Center and will be announced Saturday October 22, at the Gulf Region’s Boxing Championship. The team will be reviewed by my father, 1968 Olympic Gold Medalist and 2-Time Heavyweight Champion, George Foreman Sr. The first international trip for this new Houston team is scheduled for Jan. 2017.”

Doors open for the Gulf Gloves Championships on Saturday October 22nd at 11:00 am with announcements and the presentation of the colors by the United States Army Houston Recruiting Command Baytown Beaumont Company at 12:45 pm. The national anthem will be performed by the internationally acclaimed Houston Brass Quintet! Boxing will begin at 1:00 pm. Championship finals will begin at 1:00 pm on Sunday October 23rd.

Media open workouts for Houston amateur standout boxers will be held Wednesday October 19th at the George Foreman Youth and Community Center at 2202 Lone Oak Road Houston, Texas 77093 at 4:00 pm.

Confirmed attendees for interviews will be:

George Edward Foreman IV: Son of 2 Time Heavy Weight Champion, President of Foreman Public Relations

Marlen Esparza: 2012 Olympic Games Bronze Medalist, 2014 Amateur World Champion, 2006 & 2016 Amateur World Championships Bronze Medalist, Nine-Time USA Boxing National Champion.

Rocky Juarez: 2000 Olympic Games Silver Medalist, 1999 Amateur World Champion, WBC Silver Featherweight World Champion.

Raul Marquez: 1988 Amateur World Championships Bronze Medalist, 1992 Olympic Games Quarter-finalist, IBF Light Middleweight World Champion.

Frank Tate: 1984 Olympic Games Gold Medalist, IBF Middleweight World Champion, NABF Light Heavyweight Champion.

Juan “Baby Bull” Diaz: WBA Lightweight World Champion, WBO Lightweight World Champion, WBA Super-Lightweight World Champion, IBF Lightweight World Champion.

“Sweet” Reggie Johnson: WBA Middleweight World Champion, IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion.

In addition to many Houston area professional boxers and Gulf Boxing Association alumni. Event is sanctioned by USA Boxing – Gulf LBC: 16-25-14268

George Foreman Youth Center / Check out more boxing news and videos at The Boxing Channel.

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Press Releases

Michelle Corrales-Lewis Named New CEO of NV Boxing Hall of Fame



Michelle Corrales-Lewis

LAS VEGAS, NV (October 5, 2016) – The Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame (NVBHOF) a non-profit charitable organization which donates to boxing-related causes, is happy to announce Michelle Corrales-Lewis as its new CEO/President. Respected boxing announcer, Rich Marotta, who founded the NVBHOF in 2012, steps down after devoting years of his life to get the organization off the ground.

With a number of boxing greats already inducted, which include world champion fighters, judges, coaches and promoters, the NVBHOF has rapidly established itself as prestigious group not only here in Las Vegas, but around the world. The NVBHOF has multiple fundraising events throughout the year, helping local boxing organizations fulfill their goals to keep boxing alive within the community.

“I took this organization as far as I could and I’m very comfortable where it is at today,” said Rich Marotta. “Michelle is on the scene in Las Vegas, has a myriad of contacts, both in business and with the boxing community, especially the fighters, and is more than ready to completely run the company. She is incredibly capable and has been an indefatigable agent for growth of the NVBHOF the past three years, taking on additional responsibilities each and every year. It brings me great pleasure to announce her as the new CEO of the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame.”

After serving as the NVBHOF Chief Operating Officer for many years, Michelle Corrales-Lewis, is thrilled at her new position within the organization.

“It’s an honor to be chosen as the new CEO of the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame,” said Michelle Corrales-Lewis, widow of former multiple world champion and 2013 NVBHOF inductee, Diego Corrales. “Rich Marotta did a fantastic job building the organization from ground up. His immense work ethic is a great example of how I plan to continue the vision he set forth. My goal is to find a home for the Nevada Boxing Hall of Fame, one where fans from all around the world can visit on regular basis. The boxing community is filled with wonderful people that we will honor as inductees each year. I’m truly grateful for the wonderful opportunity that has been presented to me by my dear friend Rich Marotta.”

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