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Quotes From Mares and Victor Ortiz

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FORMER WORLD CHAMPS VICTOR ORTIZ ARE READY TO MAKE THEIR MARKS IN A BIG WAY ON SATURDAY, DEC. 13 AT MGM GRAND LIVE ON SHOWTIME®

MEDIA WORKOUT QUOTES

DEL MARES GYM, BELL GARDENS, CALIF.

Hungry is the key word for me right now. I’m hungry to become a world champion again and to get back to where I was.” — Abner Mares

I want to be one of the greats. I want to be the pound for pound king and I know what it takes to get there.” — Victor Ortiz

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BELL GARDENS, Calif.(Dec. 3, 2014) – Former world champions Abner Mares and “Vicious”Victor Ortiz participated in a media workout on Tuesday at the Del Mares Gym in Bell Gardens, Calif., as they prepare for their respective upcoming fights on the undercard of “ROYAL BATTLE: Amir Khan vs. Devon Alexander” on Saturday, Dec. 13, at the MGMGrand Garden Arena in Las Vegas live on SHOWTIME® (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).

Mares (27-1-1, 14 KOs), a former three-division world champion making his first start since reuniting with trainer Clemente Medina, will be face off against Mexico’s Jose Ramirez (25-4, 15 KOs) in a 10-round battle in one of four fights on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®.

Ortiz (29-5, 22 KOs), of Ventura, Calif. will battle Denver’s Manuel Perez (21-10-1, 4 KOs) in a scheduled eight-round match that will be featured on the SHOWTIME BOXING on SHO EXTREME telecast.

Here’s what the boxers as well as trainers, Medina (Mares) and Joseph “Hoss” Janik (Ortiz’ Assistant Trainer to Joel Diaz), had to say Tuesday at the Los Angeles-area gym:

ABNER MARES, Former Three-Division World Champion

“Training camp has been going great, it’s pretty much done. We have our last sparring session on Friday, closing with another 10 rounds.

“I’m ready for this next opponent [Jose Ramirez], who I know little about, and that scares me. When you don’t know much about a fighter it reminds you that he can bring anything.

“I had been working with Virgil Hunter in Oakland, Calif., prior to coming back to Clemente [Medina, trainer]. I had to sit down with Virgil. I learned so much from him, he’s such a wise man. Everything that he says means something and I was fortunate enough to work with him. He taught me a lot and, if anything, you will see many things I learned from Virgil in my next fight on Dec. 13.

“It’s been a long camp for me, I thought I was originally going to fight on Nov. 22 but then they told me not until December. This environment here at my own gym is great for me. My family is here and I feel very comfortable with Clemente.

“At first, I was disappointed in myself [after losing to Jhonny Gonzalez], very discouraged. I really wanted the rematch and it was going to happen in February, but then I got injured. Now, I’m back.

“I really needed this time away. Things happen for a reason. I needed more time to spend with my kids and my family. If it wasn’t for the free time I wouldn’t have built my own gym.

“I think I grew mentally as a person with my time off. I just turned 29 this past Friday; I’m blessed, healthy and hungry. Hungry is the key word for me. I’m hungry to become a world champion again and to get back to where I was.

“It’s not that I want to become world champion again, I’m going to. I’m going to let my actions speak louder than my words. I’ve been in this situation before. No one knew about me when I entered the SHOWTIME Bantamweight Tournament and then I won that and no one expected it. I’ve won many fights that people didn’t expect me to win.

“I’ve fought all the best fighters you could think of in my weight class and I plan to do that in 2015. The featherweight division is packed with great talent, strong fighters and it motivates me to get in better shape and become the beast I once was.”

VICTOR ORTIZ, Former Welterweight World Champion

“I have been in training camp for the last 12 weeks now. There are some changes, but I have an open mind to whatever Coach Joel Diaz has to say. I am not fond of the place or the spot [Indio], but its training camp. I think in the next couple weeks we will see what I have been up to.

“I never left [the welterweight division]. It is still as deep and talented a weight class as it has ever been. You have great fighters, from the guys that I have been beaten by – [Josesito] Lopez, [Marcos] Maidana, [Floyd] Mayweather. They are hot themselves so I am just here once again to box.

“Do I have to box? Absolutely not. I have been told by a lot of people to hang it up, but I make my own decisions and, at the end of the day, I am going to keep boxing. It is what I love to do.

“One important thing that was brought up was that I don’t have to box ever again because of my movies. That’s true – I don’t have to box again. But that’s not where I stand. I want to be one of the greats, I want to be the pound for pound king and I know what it takes to get there. At this point in time I have put two films aside just to fight and I’ll be back in the ring Dec. 13 to show you what I’ve been working on.

“I’m going to be world champion again. I am also going to keep chasing an Oscar [Academy Award], just so I can really pick at the crowd and let them know what it’s like to be in my shoes and let them know what I have fun doing.

“I am not going to go out there looking for a knock out because that’s pretty dangerous. We saw the last fight [loss to Luis Collazo], it is what it is. I will go round by round and see how it goes.

“I am going to be the pound for pound world champion, there is no doubt in my mind. I will be one of the greats like Floyd [Mayweather] or a [Julio Cesar] Chavez one day, I just don’t know when.

“I never lost any confidence in myself. I took a little detour, I went off into a different world and was quite successful at it, but at this point in time I want my world back. And that’s boxing.”

CLEMENTE MEDINA, Mares’ Trainer

“I’ve been working with Mares for almost two months since he started with me again after leaving Virgil Hunter. Mares is a wonderful fighter, I don’t have to change anything. The reason he came back to me is because he knows my style, and my style is similar to Mares. He and I together are a very good team.

“I wasn’t surprised when he came back to me because before he left he told me that he wanted to try to learn something different. I wasn’t happy, but I understood. He needed to learn something different from someone else. I told him that if he wants to come back to train with me, the door is always open.

“Mares is an aggressive fighter, but he’s also very smart. I expect to see the old Mares on Dec. 13. I think that Mares was thinking too much in his fight with Virgil and I think that he will go back to being more aggressive and smart.

“Mares is much more confident now that he has come back to a real team. He’s back with his family, and you can tell that he’s much happier. He didn’t feel 100 percent when training in Oakland, but he is very comfortable here.”

JOSEPH “HOSS” JANIK, Ortiz’ Assistant Trainer

“I think the move to Indio was good, it was good location-wise and timing-wise. He needed a fresh start because of the stumbles we have had recently. Joel wanted to stay in Indio. Joel is a trainer who uses a lot of positive reinforcement, doesn’t dwell on the negatives. He has been bringing out a lot of stuff Victor has done well in the past, putting combinations together. I think we may see a little of the old Victor Ortiz. At this point in his career there isn’t much new stuff you can teach him, but you can look back at the past and see what he did well.

“I think as far as expectations go, one thing we can always expect with Victor is that it is going to be a good fight, an interesting fight, an entertaining fight. I don’t think he’s ever been in a bad fight.

“Victor is not big into researching opponents. He has looked a little into Manuel [Perez]. I believe they trained at the same gym when they were younger in Colorado.

“Talent-wise, physical ability-wise, he has everything that it takes. What I think doesn’t matter, what he thinks doesn’t matter. All that matters is what he does in the ring and if he performs up to his abilities and puts everything together on that given night. Then we’ll be in for a treat.

“He is fresh; his mind is strong and sharp. He has a lot of interests in life, and that keeps him from getting bored in training camp.

“I think for this fight, I have noticed a lot of focus. He is not coming directly off a movie like his last fight. He is solely focused on boxing. I expect to see him dedicated to his fight on Dec. 13.”

# # #

In a high-stakes matchup and perhaps the most important skirmish of their careers, British superstar and former unified super lightweight world champion Amir “King” Khan (29-3, 19 KOs) of Bolton, Englandwill face former two-division world champion Alexander “The Great” (26-2, 14 KOs), of St. Louis, Mo., in the 12-round main event on “ROYAL BATTLE.”

Two other 12-round bouts will round out a stacked SHOWTIME quadrupleheader: Interim WBA Welterweight World Champion Keith “One Time” Thurman (23-0, 21 KOs), of Clearwater, Fla., will defend against consensus top-five ranked contender and fellow unbeaten Leonard “The Lion” Bundu (31-0-2, 11 KOs), of Lazio, Italy, and Jermall Charlo (19-0, 15 KOs), of Houston, will take on Lenny Bottai (22-2, 9 KOs), of Livorno, Italy, in an IBF junior middleweight title eliminator.

In other matchups on SHOWTIME EXTREME (7 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast), undefeated up-and-coming Jermell Charlo (24-0, 11 KOs), of Houston, will meet Mario Lozano (27-5, 20 KOs), of Chihuahua, Mexico in a 10-round junior middleweight scrap and unbeaten welterweight Errol Spence Jr. (14-0, 11 KOs), of Desoto, Texas, will take on an opponent to be announced in an eight-round fight.

“ROYAL BATTLE: Khan vs. Alexander,” a 12-round welterweight bout for the WBC Silver Welterweight Title, is promoted by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Khan Promotions and The Great Promotions and is sponsored by Corona Extra, AT&T and Mexico – Live It To Believe It! The event will take place at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev. and will air on SHOWTIME (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT). In the co-main event, Keith Thurman defends his interim WBA Welterweight World Title against Leonard Bundu. Additionally, Abner Mares will face Jose Ramirez in a 10-round featherweight bout and opening the telecast, Jermall Charlo will meet Lenny Bottai in a 12-round IBF Junior Middleweight Title eliminator. The SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING telecast will also be available in Spanish via secondary audio programming (SAP). Preliminary bouts will be televised on SHOWTIME EXTREME (7 p.m. ET/PT).

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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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