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Luis Ortiz Will Fight Monte Barrett

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FORMER WORLD TITLE CHALLENGER MONTE BARRETT STEPS UP TO FACE UNBEATEN LUIS ORTIZ IN “NIGHT OF THE HEAVYWEIGHTS” MAIN EVENT ON THURSDAY, APRIL 3 FROM FANTASY SPRINGS RESORT CASINO & LIVE ON FOX SPORTS 1 AND FOX DEPORTES

PLUS! FORMER HEAVYWEIGHT CONTENDER GERRY COONEY TO MEET FANS ON FIGHT NIGHT

INDIO, CALIF. (Mar. 21) – The April 3 FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes tripleheader is now complete, as former heavyweight world title challenger Monte “Two Gunz” Barrett returns to the ring to face unbeaten Cuban contender Luis “The Real King Kong” Ortiz in the main event of the highly anticipated “Night of the Heavyweights” Golden Boy Live! event at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif.

In previously announced televised heavyweight bouts, Vallejo, California’s Gerald “El Gallo Negro” Washington risks his perfect professional record in the 10-round co-main event against Houston’ Skipp “Strictly Business” Scott and 2012 U.S. Olympian Dominic “Trouble” Breazeale goes for 10 straight wins when he takes on veteran standout Nagy Aguilera.

Plus, unbeaten rising star Diego “The Golden Kid” De La Hoya will appear in a six-round junior featherweight bout and exciting prospects Santiago “El Lobito” Guevara, Neeco “The Rooster” Macias,Michael Hunter and Stephan Shaw will also be seeing action on this stacked card.

Fight fans in attendance at Fantasy Springs are in for a special treat as former heavyweight contender Gerry “Gentleman” Cooney will be on hand as a special VIP guest to meet and greet those at the event. One of the hardest punchers in heavyweight history, Cooney is best remembered for his knockout wins over Ken Norton, Ron Lyle and Jimmy Young, as well as his epic 1982 challenge for Larry Holmes’ title.

Currently ranked number two in the world by the WBA, 34-year-old southpaw Luis “The Real King Kong” Ortiz (20-0, 17 KOs) graduated from the legendary Cuban amateur boxing program with nearly 350 wins and numerous titles. When he turned professional in his adopted home state of Florida in 2010, he set his sights on gold of a different sort; a heavyweight world championship. Thus far, Ortiz has been unstoppable with five-of-his-last-six wins coming by way of knockout, making it clear that he will take out anyone in the way of his pursuit of a title.

Equipped with top-level heavyweight experience few can match on the current landscape, Queens, New York’s Monte Barrett (35-10-2, 20 KOs) has been in the ring with the best of the best over the course of his career, including Wladimir Klitschko, Tim Witherspoon, Hasim Rahman, David Haye and David Tua. Eager to get back in the heavyweight race, Barrett has specialized in spoiling the rise of the highly-touted, handing Dominick Guinn, Owen Beck, Eric Kirkland and Tye Fields crushing losses. He hopes to add Ortiz to that list on April 3.

An elite level prospect that has made an impression in each of his fights to date, Mexicali’s Diego “The Golden Kid” De La Hoya (3-0, 3 KOs) has shown remarkable skills and power in his knockout wins over Luis Cosme, Abraham Rubio and Sergio Najera. On April 3, the 19-year-old will meet an opponent to be named in a six-round junior featherweight bout.

One of the newest members of the Golden Boy Promotions team, Mexico-born junior lightweight Santiago “El Lobito” Guevara (6-0, 3 KOs) is a talented fighter with a bright future in the fight game. Scheduled for a six round bout on April 3, the Los Angeles resident is ready to impress fans at Fantasy Springs.

Palm Desert’s Neeco “The Rooster” Macias (3-0, 1 KO) is an action fighter who loves to scrap when the bell rings. In February, the southpaw won his third professional fight, decisioning Victor Altamirano in four rounds, the same length of his junior middleweight bout this April.

“Night of the Heavyweights” will live up to its name as the night will with two more heavyweight showdowns. In a heavyweight bout scheduled for six rounds, Van Nuys’ Michael Hunter (3-0, 3 KOs) will be seeking yet another knockout when he faces Jackson, Tennessee’s Rodrigo Ray (5-6-1, 2 KOs), and in the opener scheduled for four rounds in the heavyweight division, St. Louis’ Stephan Shaw (2-0, 2 KOs) will look for victory number three.

Opponents for De La Hoya, Guevara, Macias and Hunter will be announced shortly.

“Night Of The Heavyweights” is presented by Golden Boy Promotions and sponsored by Corona and O’Reilly Auto Parts. The Fantasy Springs Event Center doors open at 4:00 p.m. PT and the first fight starts at 5:00 p.m. PT. The FOX Sports 1 and FOX Deportes broadcast airs live at 10:00 p.m. ET/7:00 p.m. PT.

Tickets, priced at $25, $35 and $45, are on sale now at the Fantasy Springs Box Office, by calling (800) 827-2946 or online at www.fantasyspringsresort.com.

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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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