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News On: Cotto Undercard, Manny Workout in Times Sq., More

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NEW YORK, November 29 – This Saturday night, December 1 marks the return of Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto to Madison Square Garden in New York City where he will face undefeated WBA Super Welterweight World Champion Austin Trout. Before Cotto enters the ring in the main event of the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® tripleheader, some of his island's finest up-and-comers, including Jorge Melendez and Jeffrey Fontanez will step through the ropes on what promises to be a crowd-pleasing undercard.

Also in action in the Big Apple will be Newark, New Jersey's Michael Perez, New Brunswick, New Jersey's Jorge Diaz and The Bronx's Eddie Gomez, adding a genuine local flavor to fight night at The Garden.

Making his Madison Square Garden debut, Manati's Jorge Melendez (24-2-1, 23 KO's) has thrilled Puerto Rican fans for years with his knockout power and exciting style. Putting his 11-fight winning streak on the line in a fight that will be aired exclusively in Puerto Rico as part of the event's pay-per-view broadcast on the island, the 23-year-old power-puncher is prepared to show that he is a force in the super welterweight division. Melendez will face Greensboro, North Carolina's James Winchester 15-6 (5 KO's) in an eight-round fight.

Another ferocious youngster out of Puerto Rico, 20-year-old Caguas native Jeffrey Fontanez (9-0, 8 KO's) will also be making his New York City debut and will appear on the Puerto Rican pay-per-view broadcast. Fontanez, who is 6-0 in 2012 with three first round knockouts, will fight help to continue the long-standing Puerto Rico-Mexico boxing rivalry when he meets Tijuana's Pedro Arcos (12-2-1, 9 KO's) in a four/six-round junior lightweight bout.

Newark's Michael “The Artist” Perez (17-1-1, 10 KO's) bounced back from the lone loss of his career in January against top prospect Omar Figueroa by stopping Eric Cruz in two rounds in June and decisioning Fidel Maldonado Jr. in August. On Saturday, the red-hot prospect who has fought five times in his family's native Puerto Rico, will attempt to close the year with another win as he faces Obregon, Mexico's Fernando Carcamo (10-4, 7 KO's) in an eight-round lightweight clash that will open Puerto Rico's pay-per-view telecast.

New Brunswick, New Jersey's Jorge Diaz (16-1, 10 KO's) was a highly decorated amateur who is now pursuing his dreams of professional glory at 126 pounds. A local favorite making his fifth appearance at Madison Square Garden, Diaz rebounded from the lone loss of his career against Teon Kennedy in 2011 with a third round technical knockout victory over Rafael Lora in September of 2011. He will attempt to make it two straight when he squares off against Houston's Victor Sanchez (3-4-1) in a six-round featherweight bout.

Twenty-year-old junior middleweight phenom Eddie Gomez (11-0, 8 KO's) is coming off of a blistering second round knockout of Saul Benitez in October and the Bronx product is back in action this weekend, this time making his Madison Square Garden debut. In the opposing corner will be Gomez' toughest test to date, fellow unbeaten Luis Hernandez (9-0, 5 KO's) of Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, who he faces in a fight scheduled for six rounds.

In the opening bout of the evening scheduled for six rounds in the middleweight division, unbeaten John Thompson (9-0, 3 KO's) of Newark takes on Port Au Prince, Haiti's Eli Augustama (6-5, 3 KO's).

“Showdown: Cotto vs. Trout” is a 12-round battle between Four-Time and Three-Division World Champion Miguel Cotto and undefeated WBA Super Welterweight World Champion Austin Trout taking place on Saturday, December 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The co-featured fights will see Jayson Velez take on Salvador Sanchez in a 10-round fight for the vacant WBC Silver Featherweight title and Danny “Miracle Man” Jacobs battle Chris “The Irish Ghost” Fitzpatrick in an eight-round middleweight fight. The event is promoted by Miguel Cotto Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions in association with Greg Cohen Promotions, sponsored by The Puerto Rican Tourism Board and Corona and will be televised live on SHOWTIME at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast).

            LAS VEGAS, NEV. (November 29, 2012) – Top Rank will debut its latest fan-oriented innovation — “Just Watch” — a one-hour live stream of Fighter of the Decade Manny Pacquiao training session, Tomorrow! Friday, November 30, beginning at
5:30 p.m. ET / 2:30 p.m. PT. Streamed live on TopRank.com, InsideHBOBoxing.com and other major sports, boxing and entertainment websites, “Just Watch” will also be simulcast in Times Square on the NASDAQ building screen, which is seven stories tall, encompassing a quarter-acre of screen space.

Produced by Top Rank, in association with MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM), in full HD and utilizing a unique five-camera system, “Just Watch” will show all the action throughout the famous Wild Card Boxing Club of an actual training session between eight-division world champion Pacquiao and his Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach as they prepare for Pacquiao’s epic fourth battle against four-division world champion and Méxican icon Juan Manuel Márquez which will take place next week.

Hosted by Top Rank’s Crystina Poncher, the live stream, will give fans an unprecedented view of Pacquiao’s training session in live time.

“We wanted to give boxing fans a front row seat to what training camp for a big fight is like just days away from walking into the ring,” said Todd duBoef, president of Top Rank. “This has never been done before and if we were going to present it on one of the biggest stages – Friday rush hour in Times Square – it only made sense to do it with boxing’s biggest star, Manny Pacquiao.”

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All-new editions of HBO’s all-access reality series 24/7 PACQUIAO/MARQUEZ 4 debut on Saturday, December 1 (9:30-10:00 p.m. ET/PT) – while the finale debuts Friday, December 7 (8:00-8:30 p.m. ET/PT), the night before the high-stakes welterweight showdown. All four episodes will have multiple replay dates on HBO, and the series will also be available on HBO On Demand and HBO GO®.

Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KOs), of the Philippines, and Juan Manuel Márquez (54-6-1, 39 KOs), of México, who have won world titles in 12 weight divisions between them, will go mano a mano and toe-to-toe, for the fourth time, in a 12-round welterweight battle, Saturday, December 8, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.

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

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 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.

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George Foreman Youth Center in Houston Hosts Amateur Event

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

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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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