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Kentikian Was the Real Heavyweight in Germany Saturday Night

Phil Woolever

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susi-kentikian_10320080320201334933A LAND OF EQUAL OPPORTUNITY – For her hotly heralded return after an eight month layoff, Susi “Killer Queen” Kentikian weighed in at 111 1/2, a quarter pound more than her rival Ana Arrazola did, at 111 1/2.

Add them up and the girl's total is just a pinch less than Albert Sosnowski, 224 1/2, weighed in, and almost 30 pounds under Alexander Dimitrenko, 252 3/4.

Do the mauling marketing math in heavyweight hungry Germany and the equation comes out as quite a surprise compared to most other professional locales, especially considering the proven popularity of numerous 4-6 round undercard collisions between a variety of large European hopefuls who converge on th e active boxing scene here.

As a main event attraction, Kentikian carries the weight and does the heavy lifting at the ticket office.

As she proved once again last Saturday night in Hamburg, Kentikian seems like one of the real heavyweights in German boxing. Dimitrinko – Sosnowski, an interesting, fairly important bout, was languishing before a wandering public eye after being postponed from December after Dimitrenko fainted in the dressing room.  

After it was announced just a couple weeks before the card that Kentikian had been added to the card, the event became a hot ticket.

Fighters like Dimitrenko can't help it that Kentikian has been cast as a rugged, ultra-healthy sex symbol in many ad campaigns around the Deutschland dukeout scene.

Kentikian has also recently released a well publicized, auto-biographical “lifestyle/fitness” type book.      

During fight week there were three additional video links on the German media “Bild.de” site to Kentikian, two of which were subject matter completely unrelated to the pending contest. Both sidebars featured “the feminine side” of Kentikian, including some rather silly boxing related cheesecake poses.

The most blaring headline touted one steamy statement at the very end of one video interview, in which Kentikian indicates women boxers follow the same no-sex training habits as men.

At least they didn't make the heavyweights wear bikini briefs for the weigh-in.

Dimitrenko and Sosnowski were engaged in an elimination for another chance at the Klitschko sweepstakes. Neither man looked like they should be in with a Klitschko unless it's as a sparring partner. It was a draining exercise between two solid pros, but much of Dimitrenko- Sosnowski was a sloppy slog, including two times the fighters waltzed themselves to the floor.

After a slow start, Dimitrenko got stung until he woke up. Slowly but surely his size advantage just wore down the always advancing Sosnowski. Both men are legitimate top ten European heavyweights. Both men sometimes missed by a mile.

Finally, in the 12th frame, Dimitrenko hoisted the type of uppercut that makes him look like a future threat. The usually sturdy Sosnowski crumpled flat, out cold as if he'd been dropped from the rafters. Ten minutes later, Sosnowski still didn't know what planet he was on, but was hopefully OK as he left under his own steam.

Dimitrenko's fight was the primary warm-up act and television opener for Kentikian's spotlight before the typically huge German broadcast audience.

Dimitrenko, now in position again for a much bigger fight, was more animated and entertaining than usual during the post fight scene, but by then many in the crowd were already waiting for Kentikian's entrance.

23 year old Armenian born Hamburg resident Kentikian has recently been billed as the best professional boxer in Germany (it's still Felix Sturm, though he'll probably lose by the time anyone believes me). Kentikian wasn't anywhere near rust-free last Saturday, but she was still in good shape and almost as busy as always.

Media previews focused on the fact that Arrazola, now 19-5-3, had three children. Indeed, Arrazola turned out to be one tough mother. Kentikian won by a comfortable margin, but she got tagged more than a few times and she failed to deliver a promised knockout.

“It was tougher than I thought to come back after the time off, but I did not underestimate her,” said Kentikian, who wants to stay busier.

Kentikian's fight schedule has decreased in direct correlation with subsequent years since 2007, when she was breaking into the public eye and fought five times. Then it was four fights in '08, three in '09, and two last year. At that rate she's seen her action for this season, but it seems like management and promotional readjustments are behind her, which hopefully translates to more bouts.

Kentikian is likely to resume her sporadic but profitable German tour of medium sized venues. She'd probably be crazy to think about taking a fight in the USA. 

Professional purses are a much more private matter around here, so Kentikian's earnings were not divulged during the promotion. She and Dimitrenko probably pocketed around the same amount, in quite different sized pockets.  

Kentiakian is listed at 5'1. Dimitrenko 6'7.

On a Saturday night in a German boxing ring, Kentikian was the real heavyweight.

It says a lot about the state of women's boxing here that despite a dramatic knockout, the big bruiser still couldn't get out of the small slugger's shadow.

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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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