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Carl Frampton and Leo Santa Cruz fought to an electric 12 round decision at the Barclays Center, in Brooklyn, New York this past July. Frampton picked up a majority decision victory in his first fight at the featherweight division. The fight was a thriller with back and forth action. It was one of the few bright spots of the 2016 boxing year, it could easily be a front runner for fighter of the year on many people’s ballot. Frampton, 23-0, 14 KO’s is coming off a stellar 2016. Prior to defeating Santa Cruz, he was able to unify titles in the IBF and WBA world titles in the super bantamweight division against Scott Quigg.
There was an advert in the 1970’s which was for an insurance company here in the UK where the catchphrase was “it’s an equitable life.” I had a fleeting thought about it when sitting to write this because, the domestic heavyweight division in the UK is far from being equitable. It is fascinating, interesting and catching the mainstream media as much as it has caught the boxing fraternity on forums and internet chat nonsense.
Let’s be honest. Amongst all of the weight categories in boxing this is the one people who are not boxing fans associate with the sport. It is the one they shall get out of the chair to cheer. It is the one they shall pick up newspapers to read about and it is the one that we all want “our” fighter to win.
Sergey Kovalev SHOCKER, Alexis Arguello – Aaron Pryor, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin & More – RSR Video Email Bag Show
Johnny “World Class Pug” Lira, 29-6-1, 16 KO’s was lightweight title contender from Chicago, Illinois in the late 70’s-early 80’s. As a professional, Lira went on to win the United States Boxing Association lightweight title by knocking out undefeated, Andrew Ganigan in the sixth round in August 1978. He was a classic boxer-brawler, described as a well-spoken and intelligent man, who is remembered for slugging it out with the best of them, including former WBA Lightweight champion Ernesto Espana.
The real story behind Johnny Lira was how he was able to turn his life around because of boxing. Johnny Lira started boxing at age eight at the Union League Boy’s Club. As an amateur, he fought in the Chicago Park District tournaments, the Catholic Youth Organization tournaments, and won the Illinois statewide AAU championship in 1974. Lira also won the Chicago Novice Golden Gloves championship at middleweight in 1974.
As former light heavyweight title contender Isaac “Golden Boy” Chilemba (24-4-2, 10 KOs) gears up to face Ukrainian prospect Oleksandr Gvozdyk (11-0, 9 KOs) on the Kovalev-Ward HBO Pay-Per-View undercard, he will be training with former four-division world champion Roy Jones Jr.
Chilemba, 29, originally from Malawi, but now residing in South Africa, is coming off the toughest fight of his career. On July 11, this road-warrior travelled to WBO, WBA and IBF Light Heavyweight World Champion Sergey “Krusher” Kovalev’s home country of Russia to face the champion in front of a sold-out crowd in his own backyard. Despite the unanimous decision loss, Chilemba’s performance against Kovalev raised a lot of eyebrows in the boxing community. Chilemba managed to go the distance against the “Krusher” a distinction held only by one other fighter, future Hall of Famer Bernard “The Alien” Hopkins.
Vyacheslav “Lionheart Chingonskyy” Shabranskyy – Sullivan Barrera Press Conference ERUPTS – Breaking Boxing News
Los Angeles-based undefeated Vyacheslav “Lionheart Chingonskyy” Shabranskyy (17-0, 14 KOs) will look to continue his impressive run up the light heavyweight ladder, but standing in his way will be his toughest competition to date in the form of Cuban standout Sullivan Barrera (17-1, 12 KOs), as the two warriors go head-to-head in a 10-round bout for Shabranskyy’s WBC USNBC Light Heavyweight title on HBO Latino® Boxing on Friday, December 16 at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino.
Shabranskyy is coming off of victories inside the distance in his last seven of eight fights and last appeared on HBO Latino at the end of last year when he earned a hard-fought majority decision against rugged contender Yunieski Gonzalez.
In the last year, undefeated 154-pound contender “Swift” Jarrett Hurd has rocketed to the top of the stacked super welterweight division, putting himself squarely in the hunt for a world title. Saturday, November 12, Hurd continues his championship march as he takes on once-beaten Jorge Cota in Premier Boxing Champions on Spike action from Temple University’s Liacouras Center.
Televised coverage begins at 9 p.m. ET/8 p.m. CT and is headlined by Philadelphia’s own undefeated world champion Danny “Swift” Garcia, who takes on Colombia’s Samuel Vargas in a 10-round bout. Garcia is teaming up with Philabundance, the region’s largest hunger relief organization, to arrange a regional food drive and raise money throughout the promotion.
By Jose “Silensachi” Batista
It’s always the same song and dance, we get pumped for a huge big time fight and we rarely get it without going backwards first. Gennady Golovkin and Daniel Jacobs were on a collision course to determine who is the best middleweight on the planet. Golovkin is ranked # 1 while Daniel Jacobs is ranked # 2 according to Boxrec.
The bout was originally slated to take place December 10th as Madison Square Garden was the venue on hold for the event. The negotiations however are at a standstill for now which is a black eye for the sport at the moment. The fight could have been one of the better one’s in a very underwhelming year of boxing.
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By Jose “Silensachi” Batista
Bernard Hopkins is a legendary fighter, there is no other way to put it. He has accomplished what most boxers can only dream of, he is a first ballot future hall of famer without a doubt. Hopkins is looking for one last magical moment when he faces Joe Smith, JR. The bout will take place Saturday, December 17th and will be televised live on HBO World Championship Boxing.
Hopkins resume reads like an old school phone book when people would keep important names in there. His list of victims includes Felix Trinidad, Glen Johnson, William Joppy, Oscar De La Hoya, Antonio Tarver, Ronald “Winky” Wright, Kelly Pavlik, Jean Pascal and of course Roy Jones, JR.
At the young age of 51 and arguably one of the top 5 middleweights of all time, Bernard Hopkins, 55-7-2, 23 KO’s has decided to enter the ring one last time at the Fabulous Forum in Inglewood, California on December 17th 2016. Hopkins who hasn’t fought since his loss to the “Krusher” Sergey Kovalev in November of 2014 has chosen Long Island native Joe Smith, JR. 22-1,18 KO’s as his last opponent. Smith, JR. is coming off a devastating KO victory over Andrzej Fonfara, June 18th at the UIC Pavilion in Chicago and hasn’t lost a bout since 2010, which is the only loss on his record.
Hopkins began his pro boxing career after serving five years of an 18 year sentence inside of Graterford Correctional Facility in Pennsylvania. Before being sentenced to those 18 years for nine different felony counts, Hopkins had been in and out of trouble with the law, and had already been stabbed three times. It was in Graterford where Hopkins took up boxing.
TMZ is reporting that Adrien “Boner” Broner is up to his old ways once again and is in trouble with the law! Read HERE.
Vinny’s Views: Danny Garcia Is Way Overrated, Tyson Fury’s Struggles, Andre Ward Vs Sergey Kovalev, Roy Jones, JR RETIRE! & More…
Let me start by saying I love the sport I cover even in spite of itself. Seems almost every boxing writer has uttered those words sometime in their careers from decade to decade, generation to generation. Presently the fall of ’16 is littered with reminders of all that is wrong with the game and why we cling to precious heroes who remind us what the passion for boxing is all about.
Shooting from the hip several big name matchups have been mired in ambiguity and political strife while many a fan favorite is sitting out the remainder of the year. Abel Sanchez still has high hopes that the WBA mandated fight between his charge Gennady Golovkin and Daniel Jacobs comes to fruition for December. Jacobs’ rants this year have run the gamut from declaring he will be unable to make fight happen until spring of 17 to hand him the contract to sign, all the way to balking at proposed payday.
On June 24th, 1979, two days after Larry Holmes had successfully defended his WBC strap in a life and death struggle with heretofore unheralded challenger Mike Weaver, the rival sanctioning body, the WBA, hosted their second title elimination bout in Monte Carlo between former Undisputed World Heavyweight Champion Leon Spinks and the 5th ranked South African contender, “The Boksburg Bomber”, Gerrie Coetzee. This was to be Spinks’ first fight back after losing to Muhammad Ali in New Orleans in September of last year, an eight month layoff. Spinks, though still relatively untested as a pro at 7-1-1, was favored to beat the 24 year old Boksburg native, who sported an unblemished record of 21-0, 10 KO’s, such was the respect “Neon” Leon had accumulated for his upset win over “The Greatest” in their first match. When he was 5-0-1, Leon had sent the Italian Heavyweight Champion, then 27-0 Alfio Righetti back home to Italy with his first loss, why not do the same thing to the South African Champion with the bad right hand?
Next Friday night October 21st at “Path to Glory” presented by Thompson Boxing, LaRon Mitchell, 14-0, 13 KO’s and Scott Alexander, 12-1-2, 6 KO’s will fight for the vacant NABF Jr. Heavyweight Championship at the Double Tree Hotel in Ontario ,California. Mitchell is a rising talent in the heavyweight division. His first thirteen wins all came by knockout and his latest victory was a hard fought unanimous decision over Mario Heredia in August, was a solid test for the San Francisco native. Mitchell faces another tough obstacle in Alexander, who also fought in August on the same Thompson Boxing card as Mitchell. Alexander used his length, power and speed to easily beat Sergio Ramirez by TKO. I recently was invited by Thompson Boxing to sit down and interview both Mitchell and Alexander, and their teams about their upcoming title fight.
During that interview I asked LaRon what motivated him, he’s 36 years old with a career as a school teacher, what keeps his drive going? LaRon stated “I have a deep fire that burns inside of me, and it’s not just in me but it’s in my team. That’s my motivation.
By Jose “Silensachi” Batista
Danny Garcia is one of the most polarizing figures in boxing. He is without a doubt a big time name throughout the sport. He garners enough attention to be looked at through a microscopic lens, there is a love and hate relationship often with no middle ground. One has to wonder if Garcia has the potential to be a future pay per view star?
Garcia, 32-0, 18 KO’s is mostly criticized for his bout against Rod Salka. Salka was his opponent prior to his clash against Lamont Peterson. Salka, although an abysmal choice for an opponent, is not the only notable fight on Garcia’s resume.
Garcia’s upcoming non title fight against Samuel Vargas reminds people of the Salka fight due to the low ranking Vargas has compared to Garcia who is the number 3 welterweight in the world according to Boxrec. The negative publicity that Garcia had from the Salka fight and will receive for this fight is comparable.
Feature Boxing Writer Jose “Silensachi” Batista is our newest member on Ringside Report “The Heart of Boxing”. On behalf of the entire team, we welcome him aboard.
UFC Champion Conor McGregor continues his assault on Floyd Mayweather, JR. Read HERE.
Last night from the Echo Arena in Liverpool, England, WBC Cruiserweight champion Tony Bellew, 28-2-1, 18 KO’s, made the first defense of his title by destroying BJ Flores, 32-3-1, 20 KO’s, in just three rounds.
Flores talked a lot of trash leading up to this fight, but it didn’t do him much good in the ring tonight. The first round of the fight was a feel out round for both fighters, with Flores implementing his jab early. The second round is when things started to go downhill fast for the American fighter. He was hit with a body shot and while complaining to the ref that it was a low blow, Bellew rushed him and caught him with a right-left combination, sending him to the canvas for the second time in his career.
As the dust settles on the Scottish scene, a little, it is a lull rather than a calmness. There are storms brewing and on their way.
During the week I got to the MGM Scotland show in the Crowne Plaza Hotel in Glasgow but it helped me reflect upon a monster start to the month.
Now October has rocked here with Ricky Burns 41-5-1 14 KO’s managing to defend his world title alongside young upstart Kieran Smith 7-0, 3 KO’s getting to showcase his talent on SKY TV and knocking a guy out in 18 seconds! He is back out in November and a feast of boxing glory with local Scottish boxers.
In the main event at the 2300 Arena in Philadelphia, PA on Friday night, junior middleweights Tyrone Brunson, 23-6-2, 22 KO’s and Ismael Garcia, 10-0-2, 4 KO’s battled to an eight-round split-decision draw. Brunson scored repeatedly with his right hand throughout the fight, and displayed enough side-to-side movement to keep Garcia off balance for most of the bout. The 29-year old Garcia, who had a cut on his right eye at the end of the contest, was never able to get into a rhythm; but to his credit, despite absorbing tremendous hard body shots, kept pressing the action. Hometown favorite Brunson appeared the faster and stronger throughout the fight; however, he gave away some of the early rounds before turning on the heat in the final stages of the fight. The judges’ scorecards read 78-74 Garcia, 78-74 Brunson, and 76-76.