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Articles of 2006

Carlos “Elegante” Bojorquez Meets Kronk Fighter in Middleweight Showdown

David A. Avila



Those grains of sand are slowly dropping down the hourglass for 34-year-old Carlos Bojorquez.

A win or loss will decide the Mira Loma, Californian’s fate on June 29, Thursday at the San Manuel Casino when he meets Detroit’s Marlon “Trouble Man” Thomas (35-6-1, 21 KOs) in a junior middleweight bout.

If Bojorquez loses, he retires.

“I have to win, it’s very important for me,” Bojorquez said.

A wise man once said professional boxing is the one sport in the world that being anything but an A-level fighter means getting your brains bashed in. It’s not tennis or golf where being in the top 100 is still good.

For Bojorquez, the fighter known as “El Elegante,” being a B-plus fighter has meant engaging against some of the most fearsome prizefighters in the planet including Ike Quartey, Kassim Ouma and Verno Phillips. But that’s how he likes it.

“I was supposed to fight Teddy Reid, but he don’t want to fight me,” said Bojorquez (25-8-6, 21 KOs) who is widely known as a tough guy willing to trade bombs with anyone. “They asked me who I wanted to fight, I told them I don’t care.”

Tough guys like Bojorquez are insulted if you give them a choice. In their world it’s not very macho to pick and choose.

“This is an even fight,” said Patrick Ortiz, whose Ringside Tickets Promotions along with the San Manuel Casino are sponsoring the fight card. “Any time you face a Kronk fighter nine times out of 10 he’s ready for anybody.

“I’ll fight anybody,” said Bojorquez, who spent the month of March helping Ouma in Texas prepare for a 12-round match against Marco Antonio Rubio.

That reckless lack of concern has always been part of his prizefighting personality.

Bojorquez grew up in a small town outside of Los Mochis, Mexico. As a teen he ran away from home on a dare to hitch a ride to the United States. He loved adventure and daring even back then.

Boxing had always been a love for the Mexican-born Bojorquez. His brother had boxed and many others in his town loved the sport. Once he settled in northern California he sought out a boxing gym to give it a try.

“There were not many Mexicans my size to train,” said Bojorquez, who always fought at the middleweight level. “I would hit the bag and go home.”

He entered numerous amateur tournaments but few middleweights were available so he wound up winning a few trophies without lifting a glove. He got lazy.

“One day I entered this tournament and they had some guys for me to fight,” said Bojorquez laughing. “I got beat. I was out of shape.”

From that day on he vowed to never be unprepared.

Not blessed with blazing hand speed or the agility of a gazelle, what Bojorquez does possess is a world-class chin and fists that could knock out a heavyweight.

Two years ago, with less than a week’s notice, Bojorquez was asked to fill in for Ouma who suffered an injury before a junior middleweight title fight. Because he was within four pounds of the required weight limit, he took the fight and eventually lost to Phillips. It was his only chance for a world title. He wants another.

This time, however, he enters the ring without his longtime running partner Willy Silva. Silva quit after the loss to Quartey.

“I don’t want Carlos to fight any more,” said Silva, who served as his trainer and manager from 1997 until last December. “He got hit too much in his last fight.”

Silva wanted Bojorquez to retire after getting hammered for 10 rounds against Quartey. Though Bojorquez was never dropped, he received many punches and was unable to land his usual amount in return.

“I’m not mad at Willy,” said Bojorquez. “He was good to me.”

What drives Bojorquez toward one more title shot is his son Maximiliano Bojorquez, 3, who he dotes over.

“I want to do something for my boy,” he said. “I’m not a doctor or a lawyer, all I have are these fists to try to make money.”

Getting one more world title shot is all he wants.

“I don’t know why I haven’t had more opportunities. I give everyone a good fight,” says Bojorquez who is now trained by Ruben Castanon and advised by Eddie Jordan. “I guess I’m unlucky.”

Lucky or not, Bojorquez meets another fighter much like himself in Thomas. There can be only one winner.

For tickets or information call (800) 359-2464.

Other bouts

A match between two junior middleweights Allan Velasco (4-0-1) and Arron Robinson (3-1-1), who both actually fight at welterweight, could be a great contest on the undercard.

Azusa’s Velasco has proven to be a solid boxer who, despite his lack of professional fights, does most things correctly inside the ring. He’s a compact puncher who knows how to counter. He doesn’t possess great speed or power, but has surprising technique for a boxer with only four pro fights at age 30.

Robinson, 20, comes from South Central Los Angeles with a lot of energy and a gung ho attitude. He’s trained by Kevin Morgan and has had problems finding opponents in the California area. People just don’t want to fight Robinson with his long arms and cracking fists. Though the LA fighter is quick, strong and takes a good punch, he’s still in the early learning process. If anyone wants to fight this guy they should do it now before he really learns how to fight. Right now he’s a natural fighter who eats up mediocrity.

The bout is scheduled for six rounds.

In a super middleweight bout Luis Lopez (11-6, 5 KOs), a super middleweight out of Washington, meets Paul Avitea (12-6, 9 KOs) of Mexico who is trying to break a five fight-losing streak. All of those losses were to quality fighters including Armando Velardez Jr., Rodney Jones, Vince Phillips, and Marco Antonio Rubio.

Inland Empire fighters

For those not familiar with the Inland Empire, it’s an area in Southern California located east of Los Angeles County. It comprises San Bernardino and Riverside County and is larger than some states in area. From Pomona (a city actually in L.A. County but included by most to be part of the Inland Empire) to the Nevada border, and from San Diego County to Yorba Linda, the Inland Empire has grown rapidly in the last 10 years from 1.5 million to more than 3 million people. And during that time the hunger for boxing has also caused the emergence of more than 30 boxing gyms. The most famous of the gyms are the Coachella Boxing Club, Indio Boxing Club, Lincoln Boxing Club, Meadowbrook Boxing Club, Willy Silva’s Gym, Casa Blanca Boxing Club, Redlands YMCA, Fists of Gold in Pomona, Chino Boxing Club, Fontana Boxing Club and numerous others.

With hundreds of amateurs filtering through the many boxing gyms the boxing world will see more and more of the results.

Right now, there are many professional boxers coming out of the Inland Empire or the “I.E.” as the locals call it. The area codes “909”, “951” and “760” are the different parts of the I.E.

Here is a roster of current I.E. top prizefighters:

Carlos Bojorquez, 34, is the dean of Inland Empire fighters and has fought too many elite fighters to name. His most famous conquest was Pernell “Sweet Pea” Whitaker and his last fight came against Ike “Bazooka” Quartey in a gallant but losing effort. He lives in Mira Loma, a small rural neighborhood near Riverside, California.

Mark Suarez, 27, is currently ranked number one by the IBF as a welterweight. Since moving up to welterweights, Suarez has stopped seven consecutive opponents and is eager to meet for the world title. Known as “Poison,” the Riverside, California fighter can box or punch. His most famous wins came against James “Spyder” Webb, Viktor Sydorenko and Jason Papillon in big fight cards in New York City and Las Vegas. He’s probably the most underrated welterweight in the world.

Antonio “Tono” Diaz, 30, is the older brother of Julio and veteran of many engagements against elite fighters. His most famous conquests were Cory Spinks, Micky Ward and Emanuel Augustus. He captured the IBA world title but was unsuccessful against Antonio Margarito for the WBO and Shane Mosley for the WBC. He retired once, fought twice and has not reemerged since last August. But when he fought he was one of the top junior welterweights in the world. He lives in Coachella, a small agricultural town near Palm Springs, California.

Julio “The Kidd” Diaz, 26, is the youngest of the fighting Diaz brothers of Coachella. He captured the IBF lightweight world title from Javier Jauregui and eagerly agreed to attempt unification against Jose Luis Castillo. He lost, but has returned with more vigor and is now in line to meet current lightweight champ Jesus Chavez for the IBF belt.

Fernando “Bobby Boy” Velardez, 25, fought for the featherweight world title against Erik “El Terrible” Morales. He’s as game as they come. Velardez has not fought since knocking out Mike Juarez in two rounds. No one is tougher than Bobby Boy.

Armando Velardez Jr., 26, is the oldest of the fighting Velardez brothers out of San Bernardino, California. His most famous conquests were Matt Vanda and Ian McKillop. He fought well in losing to David Estrada and Quandaray Robertson. He hasn’t lost a fight in three years now and now boxes as a junior middleweight.

Eddie Sanchez, 30, made his biggest impact on national television when he stepped in for an injured fighter with one-day notice and beat J.C. Candelo. He’s also beaten Jose Celaya and Ishwar Amador. He’s a middleweight whose long arms and surprising power can make trouble for any opponent.

Another fighter from the I.E. not mentioned is Sugar Shane Mosley. He’s won world titles in three weight classes and was the first to beat Oscar De La Hoya twice. He trains in Big Bear Lake, which is located in the I.E. He’s currently preparing for his rematch against Fernando Vargas.


Articles of 2006

Peter/Toney Ii: Peter Has The Brutal Punch




Samuel Peter claims he has dynamites in my two hands?

Heavyweight contenders Samuel “The Nigerian Nightmare” Peter and James Lights Out? Toney get it on a second time this Saturday from the Seminole Hard Rock in Hollywood, Fla. (Showtime).

The hard-slugging Peter, unlike Toney, is one of those strong, silent types notorious for letting their fists to the talking one the opening bell sounds, but the Nigeria Nightmare is as confident as ever and determined to turn Lights Out’s lights out for good.

I have got dynamites in my two hands,? said Peter, according the Lagos, Nigeria Vanguard, and I will crush James Toney once and for all. The Toney camp made the mistake of their lives by protesting and seeking a rematch. I am ready to teach him a bitter lesson.?

Sam Peter walked away with the W for Peter/Toney I at the Staples Center in LA last September, but it was by disputed split decision a verdict so disputed, there was even a dispute about the dispute which forced the WBC’s hand into mandating Saturday’s rematch.

Samuel Peter is the biggest thing to hit African boxing since Ghanaian superstar Azumah Nelson rocked the feather and junior welterweight divisions. The President of the Nigeria Boxing Board of Control, Prince Olaide Adeboye, admitted, according to, We are rooting for Samuel Peter, of course. He is one boy we believe in to bring back the country’s lost glory in professional boxing. I am personally making arrangement to be at the ringside to see him fight Toney again. I was at the first fight in Los Angeles in September.

Peter has the brutal punch, and to me he was the clear winner of the first fight. But the WBC Board of Governors, of which I am a member, voted 21-10 for a rematch. There was nothing those of us Africans on the board could do in the circumstances. But I believe Peter will confirm he is better than Toney and will then go ahead to meet the champion and claim the belt for Nigeria and Africa.?

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Articles of 2006

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings for Asia




There are claims that boxing is dying. Hogwash. The heavyweight division isn’t the only division in boxing and 2007 promises to be a banner year in boxing; especially for boxers hailing from Asia.

While Asia isn’t Vegas or Atlantic City, it is a region packed of diamonds in the rough; undiscovered gems and potential superstars who wait for their moment in the sun.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Asia

1) Manny Pacquiao – There’s no way to dispute Pacquiao is the best fighter in Asia, if not all of boxing. He’s exciting, he wins with Je Ne Sais Quois and is definitely “the man” in boxing.

2) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam – Although his competition leaves much to be desired, his longevity and skills are undeniable. He is currently Thailand’s only world champion and is undefeated in ten years. Need I say more?

3) Chris John – A victory over Juan Manuel Marquez, however controversial, shows he belongs at the top of the heap. He easily outpointed Renan Acosta to close out 2006 and should have no trouble defending against Jose Rojas in February. A fight with Pacquiao would not be a good move on his part but a rematch with Marquez would not hurt – especially if he defeats the Mexican again.

4) Hozumi Hasegawa – Hidden away in Japan, Hasegawa is a sharp punching southpaw who put former champion Veeraphol Sahaprom to sleep. He recently bested Genaro Garcia and his herky-jerky style will give fits to any one who steps in the ring with him.

5) Masomori Tokuyama – Tokuyama has never shied away from a good fight and although he only fought once in 2006 (UD12 Jose Navarro), he ledger shows wins over Katsushige Kawashima (twice), Gerry Penalosa (twice) and In Jin Chi (twice). A fight with Hozumi Hasegawa is a distinct possibility in 2007.

6) Nobuo Nashiro – With only seven fights under his belt he took on WBA champion Martin Castillo – and defeated him. Although he’s only fought a total of nine fights, nearly all have been against quality opposition. A victory in a rematch with Castillo would cement his claim as the king of the 115-pound division.

7) Yukata Niida – This light-hitting minimumweight defended his title twice in 2006, winning a technical decision against unbeaten Eriberto Gejon (Tech Win 10) and the other on points over Ronald Barrera (W 12). Scheduled to meet Katsunari Takayama early next year – the best has yet to come for this WBA belt holder.

8) In Jin Chi – Won back the title he lost to Takashi Koshimoto in January from Rudolfo Lopez. While there’s little uncertainty to his skills, at thirty-three, 2007 may provide some insight as to just how much he has left.

9) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai –Sor Nonthachai is an exciting, top-shelf fighter with an iron chin. Has no trouble making mincemeat of mid-level opposition and deserves a title shot in 2007. Time is running out.

10) Rey Bautista – He’s young, relatively inexperienced in big-time boxing, but will continue to shine in 2007. One of the better prospects in boxing, he should snag a title in 2007.

Asian Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pound for Pound:

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #2

Jr. Lightweight

Manny Pacquiao (Philippines): #1
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9


Chris John (Indonesia) #1
In Jin Chi (Korea) #3
Takashi Koshimoto (Japan) #5
Hioyuki Enoki (Japan) #7

Jr. Featherweight

Somsak Sithchatchawal (Thailand) #4


Hozumi Hasegawa (Japan) #2
Veeraphol Sahaprom (Japan) #3
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin (Thailand) #6
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Thailand) #10

Jr. Bantamweight

Nobuo Nashiro (Japan) #1
Katsushige Kawashima (Japan) #7
Pramuansak Phosuwan (Thailand) #10


Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Thailand) #1
Takefumi Sakata (Japan) #7
Daisuke Naito (Japan) #10

Jr. Flyweight

Koki Kameda (Japan) #1


Yukata Naiida (Japan) #2
Eagle Kyowa (Japan/Thai) #4
Katsunari Takayama (Japan) #5
Rodel Mayol (Philippines) #7

Boxing in Thailand

There’s no shortage of boxers in Thailand. With a huge pool of Muay Thai fighters to draw from and several talented amateur boxing prospects turning pro after the 2008 Beijing Olympics, Thailand seems destined to remain a boxing powerhouse in Asia.

The country is known for having tough, determined and disciplined fighters who give their all whenever the step in to the ring. However, consistently losing while fighting abroad and padding their records with no-hopers has done nothing to enhance their reputation.

Whether because of a lack of marketability, a lack of funds or their unwillingness to travel abroad, the vast majority of boxers from Thailand remain a mystery to fans in the west. If anything though, the boxing scene involving Thai fighters will be active. In fact, it’s one of the most active in the world; since 2000, the number of fights has nearly doubled in the country.

The Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand – August 2006

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam
2) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym
3) Somsak Sithchatchawal
4) Wandee Singwancha
5) Sirimongkol Singwancha
6) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai
7) Veeraphol Sahaprom
8) Pramuansak Phosuwan
9) Terdsak Jandaeng
10) Oleydong Sithamerchai

Current Sweet Science P4P Rankings – Thailand

1) Pongsaklek Wonjongkam (Flyweight) – Definitely the top dog in Thailand

2) Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai (Super Lightweight) – He’s a seasoned fighter who has proven himself in the big-time. He’s one Thai who can fight outside of Asia. He has an abundance of skills and one-punch power. His overall ability and ease in dispatching anyone other than championship caliber get him the runners-up spot.

3) Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym (Super Bantamweight) – After losing to Vladimir Sidorenko he’s bounced back. He’s young, he can punch, but the former interim champion needs to prove himself against a name fighter.

4) Somsak Sithchatchawal (Super Bantamweight) – Was his win over Monshipour a fluke or was Celestino Caballero just that good? Did Sithchatchawal catch Monshipour at the right time and can he rebound from the devastating loss? The jury is still out.

5) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

5) Sirimongkol Singwancha (Super Lightweight) – Get this guy a fight. He’s better than Jose Armando Santa Cruz and would have beat up Inada had the fight taken place. He’ll fight anyone but his biggest obstacle is staying motivated fighting tomato cans in Thailand. Like many Thais, he needs a fight against a name opponent.
6) Wandee Singwancha (Flyweight) – He doesn’t have much of a punch which will be his downfall in the end. He can box, as was evidenced in his recent victory over Juanito Rubillar, but this won’t be enough. He can no longer make the Jr. Flyweight limit and with no punch he’ll have a hard time competing against the “big boys.” Although he’s now rated second by the WBC, he doesn’t deserve to be.

7) Pramuansak Phosuwan (Super Flyweight) – A genuine tough guy. Always calm and focused no matter how heated the battle. But at thirty-eight, he’ll be in trouble should he fight one of the division’s elite.
8) Veeraphol Sahaprom (Bantamweight) – Will be lucky to get another crack at the title. Although he has a puncher’s chance of winning a belt, that’s about all he has left at this point. A third shot at Hasegawa is unlikely.

9) Oleydong Sithamerchai (Minimumweight) – He’s fought better than the usual opponents faced by Thais at his level and he moves up one spot with the departure of Terdsak Jandaeng. He lacks the punch and is in the wrong division to become a superstar. He’ll need to defeat a name opponent to convince me.

10) Saenghiran Lookbanyai / Napapol Kittisakchokchai (Super Bantamweight) – These two square-off in early March, supposedly to see who deserves a shot at Israel Vasquez. Kittisakchokchai has the edge in experience but some feel Lookbanyai has the edge in heart and is the favorite.

Neither has defeated a top twenty fighter and yet are ranked number one and two respectively in the WBC’s world.

In Kittisakchokchoi’s lone shot at the big-time, he was TKO’d in 10 by Oscar Larios. His dreadful performance against Larios and lack of quality opposition leads me to believe Saenghiran might have more of a shot at beating him than some suspect. Regardless, neither of them lasts longer than six rounds with Israel Vasquez.

Honorable Mention: Wethya Sakmuangklang, Denkaosan Kaovichit, Devid Lookmahanak, Nethra Sasiprapa, Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo, Pornsawan Kratingdaenggym

Thai Fighters Ranked in Ring Magazine

Pongsaklek Wonjongkam: #1 Flyweight
Pramuansak Phosuwan: #10 Jr. Bantamweight
Veeraphol Sahaprom: #3 Bantamweight
Ratanachai Sor Vorapin: #6 Bantamweight
Poonsawat Kratingdaenggym: #10 Bantamweight
Somsak Sithchatchawal: #3 Jr. Featherweight
Yodsanan Sor Nanthachai: #9 Lightweight

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Articles of 2006

Iceman Stops Tito Ortiz Win Streak

David A. Avila



LAS VEGAS—UFC light heavyweight champion Chuck “Iceman” Liddell’s fists proved too much for Huntington Beach’s Tito Ortiz who was stopped in the third round before a sold out crowd at the MGM Garden Arena on Saturday.

The punching machine Liddell (20-3, 13 KOs) repeated his victory in UFC 66 over the much-improved grappler Ortiz who has improved his punching and blocking. Ortiz was trying to avenge his loss of April 2004.

Despite all the new weapons displayed by Ortiz it wasn’t enough as Liddell pummeled the former champion and retained his title with a technical knockout at 3:59 of the third round. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bout.

“This was the most satisfying victory of my career,” said Liddell, 36, of Santa Barbara. “Tito came back real tough.”

Ortiz (15-5, 8 KOs), a former wrestler, worked on his boxing technique knowing he would need it against the former boxer Liddell. But Liddell’s experience allowed him to find the right moment to pounce on Ortiz.

“I had him hurt, I just kept throwing punches,” said Liddell who also knocked down Ortiz in the first round with a left hook.

Ortiz was gracious in defeat.

“Chuck is the best fighter Pound for Pound in the (mixed martial arts) world,” said Ortiz, 31, who suffered a gash on the side of his left eye from a punch. “I’m disgusted by myself. I let my fans down.”

Other bouts

Underdog Keith Jardine (12-3-1) knocked out Forrest Griffin (13-4) at 4:41 of the first round in their light heavyweight showdown. A right uppercut followed by a left hook wobbled Griffin who was sent to the floor by a barrage of punches. On the ground Jardine landed right after right until referee John McCarthy stopped the fight for a technical knockout.

“I couldn’t believe he was hurt,” said Jardine about Griffin who is known for his resiliency. “I was so nervous coming into this fight, but now I know I belong here.”

Canada’s Jason McDonald (18-7) choked out Chris Leben (15-3) in a middleweight bout that was up for grabs. Though Leben seemed to control the fight with stunning left hands, once the fight went to the ground McDonald managed a chokehold at 4:03 of the second round. Referee Steve Mazagatti saw Leben was unconscious and stopped the fight.

Former UFC heavyweight champion Andrei Arlovski (12-5) caught Brazil’s Mario Cruz (2-2) with a sneak right hand while both were tangled on the ground. Then the Belarusian pummeled Cruz until referee Herb Dean stopped the fight at 3:15 of the first round.

Third season winner of the Ultimate Fighter television reality season Michael Bisping (12-0) of Great Britain won by technical knockout over Eric Shafer (9-2-2) at 4:29 of the first round. A knee knocked Shafer groggy then Bisping knocked him to the ground and pounded him. Referee Mario Yamasaki stopped the bludgeoning.

Thiago Alves (16-4) caught Peru’s Tony De Souza (15-5) with a knee as he attempted to dive for his legs in a welterweight contest. After that it was pretty much over as Alves pummeled De Souza at 1:10 of the second round forcing referee John McCarthy to halt the bout.

Gabriel Gonzago (7-1) proved too strong for Carmelo Marrero (6-1) in a heavyweight bout. At 3:22 of the first round Gonzago of Massachusetts manipulated his way into arm bar forcing Pennsylvania’s Marrero to tap out.

Japan’s Yushin Okami (19-3) pounded Georgia’s Rory Singer (11-6) into submission at 4:03 of the third round of a middleweight bout. Okami seemed the more-rounded fighter with effective kicks to the head and more accurate punching.

Christian Wellisch (8-2) jumped to a quick start with an accurate left hook that rattled Australia’s Anthony Perosh (5-3) in a heavyweight bout. During the first round it seemed the Sacramento fighter might end the fight but the Aussie hung tough. Wellisch won by unanimous decision.

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