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Star-Studded Press Conferences Coming & Fight Chatter

David A. Avila

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132352294 crop 650x440A reverse sandwich of stars hit the promotional road with Manny “Pacman” Pacquiao and Tim “Desert Storm” Bradley kicking it off this Tuesday in Beverly Hills. That’s followed a week later with Floyd Mayweather and Miguel Cotto.

Picture the meat of a sandwich on the outside and the bread inside as Amir Khan will surely be promoting his rematch with Lamont Peterson in the near future.

Pacquiao and Bradley promises to be a congenial affair with both prizefighters known for their graciousness before the press and penchant for sportsmanship.

One thing both do possess is confidence.

Bradley and Pacquiao stop in L.A. on Tuesday then fly to New York City on Thursday where they’ll be at the Lighthouse on Chelsea Piers at noon.

The following week Mayweather and Cotto hit the ballyhoo road beginning in Puerto Rico on Monday Feb. 27 at the Coliseo de Puerto Rico at 2 p.m. The next day they arrive at the Apollo Theater in New York City. They finalize the tour on the streets of Hollywood right in front of the Grauman Chinese Theater on Thursday March 1. They won’t be stepping on wet cement but expect a large group of press coverage and thousands of fans when they arrive at 1 p.m.

No word yet on Khan-Peterson’s press tour but expect one soon.

More fight chatter:

East L.A.’s Shawn Estrada (14-0, 12 KOs) defeated Terrance Woods (9-4, 6 KOs) by unanimous decision after eight rounds of a super middleweight fight on Friday. Estrada, a former U.S. Olympian, has battled hand problems the past few years. Though he stunned Woods he was unable to stop the sturdy fighter and won by decision. In the other match, Mike Dallas Jr. (18-2-1, 7 KOs) shut out Ohio’s Miguel Gonzalez (20-3, 15 KOs) after eight rounds of their junior welterweight match.

WBC junior middleweight titleholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (39-0-1, 29 KOs) of Mexico will defend against Pomona’s Sugar Shane Mosley (46-7-1, 39 KOs) on May 5, at the MGM Grand in Las Vegas. The popular redhead from Guadalajara will be making his fourth world title defense. The main event features Floyd Mayweather (42-0, 26 KOs) fighting Puerto Rico’s Miguel Cotto (37-2, 30 KOs) who holds the WBA junior middleweight title.

WBC heavyweight titleholder Vitali Klitschko (43-2, 40 KOs) faced Dereck Chisora (15-2, 9 KOs) of Great Britain yesterday in Munich, Germany. The British heavyweight lost his last bout and two of the last three but was still, strangely, fighting for Klitschko’s world title. EPIX showed a stream of the UD12 win for Klitschko.

USA Boxing presented 20 amateur bouts yesterday at Warzone in Rancho Cucamonga, Calif. The gym is located at 9445 Foothill Blvd. in Rancho Cucamonga. For more information about the gym call (909) 989-4663.

Arizona’s Jesus “El Martillo” Gonzalez (27-1, 14 KOs) fought Canada’s Adonis Stevenson (16-1, 13 KOs) for the IBF Inter-Continental super middleweight title yesterday. The match takes place in Montreal. Both are left-handers with tremendous punching power, but Adonis’ spoke louder. He stopped Gonzalez in round one.

Mexico’s very popular Jorge “El Travieso” Arce (59-6-2, 45 KOs) met Venezuela’s Lorenzo Parra (31-3-1, 18 KOs) in a 10 round bout in the junior featherweight division yesterday. The rematch took place in Mexicali; they fought to a draw in 2010. This time, Arce stopped Parra in round five.

Undefeated heavyweight Alex “The Great” Flores (7-0, 5 KOs) of Rowland Heights faces Yohan Banks (4-6-3) on Thursday Feb. 16, at the OC Hangar in Costa Mesa, Calif. The Roy Englebrecht Promotions fight card also features Eric Mendez (1-0) against Ontario’s John Worthy plus a female bantamweight match. There will also be several mixed martial arts fights. For more information go to www.fightcluboc.com

Temecula’s mixed martial arts legend Dan “Hendo” Henderson will be the first guest on Spike’s new television show MMA Censored Live on Thursday Feb. 23. Henderson was voted MMA Fighter of the Year by several sports publications after beating Shogun Rua and Fedor Emelianenko.

Riverside’s undefeated Mikey Garcia (27-0, 23 KOs) will be fighting Bernabe Concepcion (34-4-1, 17 KOs) of the Philippine Islands on Saturday March 10, in Puerto Rico. Garcia is ranked number one by the WBA and Concepcion has fought several times for the featherweight world title. It will be televised on Showtime.

Artemio Reyes Jr. of San Bernardino heads a very strong Thompson Boxing Promotions fight card on Friday Feb. 24 at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario. Also on the loaded boxing card will be Efrain Esquivias, Aron Martinez, Dashon Johnson and Sindy Amador among others. For more information call (714) 935-0900.

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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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