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Hallmark Moments From Adrien Broner

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Adrien Broner

Adrien Broner – ATLANTIC CITY, NJ (February 5) – When it comes to Valentine’s Day, even the toughest guys can be softies. This is the case with WBC Lightweight World Champion Adrien Broner, NABO & WBC International Heavyweight Champion Johnathon Banks and heavyweight contender Seth Mitchell. Despite being deep in training camp for their respective February 16 fights at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City which will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing, Broner, Banks and Mitchell took time to discuss their Valentine’s Day memories, secret admirers and their special some ones for this year.

Even Broner, whose ring name is “The Problem,” offered his recipe for a successful relationship saying, “If you feel like you have somebody special, hold on to them, don’t let them go and fight for them.”

VALENTINE’S DAY Q&A:

Q: Do you remember your first Valentine? If so, what grade were you in and why was she your Valentine?

Adrien Broner: Should I name all eight? I was in first grade and they were all cute. I have had all types of Valentines. I even had teachers as Valentines.

Johnathon Banks: My first Valentine was in the third grade. I thought she was pretty. She was in the same class as me and was the smartest girl in the class. Brains and beauty, I fell for her like a sack of rocks.

Seth Mitchell: My first real Valentine was in the 10th grade. She was my first Valentine because we were actually dating at the time. I didn’t have a car, so her mom came, picked us up and dropped us off at Red Lobster. We ate dinner and then went to a movie. Then her mom came and picked us up and dropped me back off at home. I was able to sneak in a hug, but that’s about it. It was a fun night though.

Q: What was the nicest Valentine you ever received?

Adrien Broner: I have gotten too many to count. I got a huge heart shaped cake once, which was pretty tasty. Other than that, I would rather not say…

Johnathon Banks: The nicest Valentine I received was a teddy bear, candy and a card with money from a girl when I was 15. She became my girlfriend after that. She knew that I liked her and I knew she liked me, but I was too shy at the time.

Seth Mitchell: When I was a junior in college, my girlfriend at the time invited me over. When I walked into her apartment, slow jams were playing. I could smell something good cooking in the kitchen. I sat and watched her put the final touches on the meal she was making for me, while she wearing my favorite pumps. It was the beginning of a very romantic evening…let’s just say that girl ended up being my wife.

Q: What was the best/most exciting Valentine’s Day gift you have given someone?

Adrien Broner: I am usually in training camp so that’s tough, but I always send gifts. This year, I am sending my girlfriend a huge teddy bear, it’s as big as a couch. All I can say is when it comes to Valentine’s Day presents, you have to go all out, every time. Every year, presents should be better than the year before.

Johnathon Banks: I gave my mom a large sum of cash on Valentine’s Day a couple of years back. The smile on her face was priceless.

Seth Mitchell: When I’m with my wife, I pay attention to comments she makes about things she likes while we are at the mall or out and about. I make mental notes of these things and Valentine’s Day is one day out of many days of the year, where I try to surprise her by getting her a gift to make her day special.

Q: Did you ever have a secret Valentine or crush that you always wondered about?

Adrien Broner: All the girls that were cute back then have kids now and are all out of shape…so no.

Johnathon Banks: I don’t remember having a secret Valentine, but I have always had a crush on [actress] Halle Berry.

Seth Mitchell: Growing up, [actress] Nia Long was my wish for a Valentine. I thought she was beautiful and I have a thing for dark-skinned women. I thought she was a natural beauty.

Q: When was your first kiss? Who was she and how did it happen?

Adrien Broner: Whew. I don’t know. I can’t think that far back. It was like really early. I was a ‘baby kid.’

Johnathon Banks: It was in the fifth grade, after a choir assembly in an after school program. I was scared and shaking-I kissed her on the lips.

Seth Mitchell: My first kiss was when I was in the second grade. The girl I kissed was in the fourth grade. She lived next door to me. It happened on her porch. We were just talking and one thing led to another. I was scared and I didn’t know what I was doing. It took a few more years to perfect my technique.

Q: Even though it will be two days before your fight, who is your Valentine this year and why?

Adrien Broner: My girlfriend. We are going to celebrate Valentine’s Day after the fight. It’s going to be good.

Johnathon Banks: I don’t have one this year, I’ll send flowers to my mom like I do every year.

Seth Mitchell: My Valentine this year is my wife. She’s my best friend. She knows what makes me happy. She has given me my children, who are my two most precious gifts. I trust her and I can confide in her. She makes me feel special by just being around me.

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Broner vs. Rees, a 12-round fight for Broner’s WBC Lightweight World Championship will take place Saturday, February 16 at Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey. The event is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions, R&R Promotions, sponsored by Caesars Atlantic City, Corona and AT&T and will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing beginning at 10:30 p.m. ET/PT. The co-main event will be a 12-round heavyweight rematch between Johnathon Banks and Seth “Mayhem” Mitchell for Banks’ NABO and WBC International Heavyweight titles which is co-promoted by K2 Promotions.

Tickets priced at $200, $100, $50 and $25, plus applicable taxes and service charges, are available for purchase at the Boardwalk Hall box office, by calling Ticketmaster at (800) 736-1420 or online at www.ticketmaster.com.

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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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