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NBC Fight Night Will Be South vs. North Philly

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NBC Sports Network Fight Night new logo

It's going to be a hot time in Philly on Saturday night when North Philly takes on South Philly in the main event of the inaugural edition of NBC Sports Network's “Fight Night” Boxing Series. The final press conference was held at the Wells Fargo Center in Philadelphia, PA today.

Heavyweights Maurice Byarm,13-0-1, 9 KO's, of North Philly and Bryant Jennings, 11-0, 5 KO's, of South Philly will vie for the Pennsylvania State Heavyweight Championship according to Greg Sirb, Pennsylvania Boxing Commissioner.

North Philadelphia's Bryant Jennings took full credit for accepting the fight, “This is a great opportunity. I am actually glad I made this decision, not only for myself, but for the sport. We don't really have what we used to have back in the day. Nowadays people have fabricated records. We have guys running around calling themselves tough, but they are not really proving themselves. I think this is the opportunity for both of us to prove ourselves. Saturday you are going to know who both of us are. Everybody's going to be watching, I'm going to go out and give it my all.”

Credits: Philly Boxing History
Jennings and Byarm
Credits: Philly Boxing History

Maurice Byarm of South Philly was grateful for the opportunity, “This fight on Saturday is going to be a great fight for me and for Bryant. Win, lose or draw its going to catapult both of us to a higher elevation in our career. I think in this fight we are going to bring out the best in each other. Anyone who has ever been to the Blue Horizon knows that's what we do (in Philadelphia). We give great fights, especially two Philadelphia fighters; it's going to be great for the fans. We got this fight on a week's notice and we are both fighting for the pride of Philadelphia. I thank NBC for putting this fight on.”

NBC Sports Network matchmaker Russell Peltz, President, Peltz Boxing, talked about the highly anticipated match between Jesus Soto-Karass, 24-6-3, 16 KO's, and Gabriel Rosado, 18-5, 10 KO's. , “In my mind the co-feature is just as important as the main event. It's featuring Gabriel Rosado who after only 17 amateur fights is on the verge of making some serious money as a junior middleweight; despite the fact that today's so-called boxing experts scoff at a record of 18 wins and 5 losses, not even having the intelligence to look at the caliber of opposition. It's a big fight for him. Just as it's a big fight for Jesus Soto Karass, who would probably like to shed his image as the policeman of the then welterweight division and now the junior middleweight division and step it up a bit and maybe get himself back into the big money.”

Soto Karass thanked NBC and the promoters for the opportunity to be on the card and added, “I had a good training camp in Los Angeles and we are 100% prepared, physically and mentally. I don't have problems with my weight going to 154. It's going to be a good show on Saturday.”

Credits to: Philly Boxing History 

Rosado and Soto Karass 

Credits: Philly Boxing History

Rosado expressed his eagerness to prove himself, “I know what Soto Karass brings to the table and he is going to bring the best out of me. I am up for the challenge. This is a statement fight for me; I want to show the world and everyone in the hometown what I am all about.”

Peltz endorsed Saturday's fights, “Number 1 do the styles blend? Number 2 is the fight important and is it going to lead anywhere? And number 3, would I buy a ticket to watch the fight? I say in both cases on Saturday night, the answer is yes. It's a good show; it's loaded from top to bottom!”

Promoted by Main Events, Peltz Boxing Promotions and Greg Cohen Promotions. The non-televised undercard fights will begin at 7 p.m. The NBC Sports Network Fight Night broadcast will begin at 9 p.m. ET. A small amount of tickets are still available at $45 and $65 and can be purchased by calling Peltz Boxing, (215) 765-0922, or online at www.peltzboxing.com.

To find the location of the NBC Sports Network on your local cable, satellite or IPTV provider, click here: http://nbcsports.msnbc.com/id/30092015/ns/sports/

Twitter: #NBCSNFightNight.

Tweet the link to NBC Sports Network Fight Night channel finder: bit.ly/175UuU 

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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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