Thursday, August 22, 2019

Is It Too Much, Too Soon For The Resurgence Of Bareknuckle Boxing?



Longtime readers of The Boxing Truth® are likely familiar with the coverage this observer has provided over the years of the various forms of Bareknuckle Boxing that have emerged. Over the last year, several promotions have surfaced devoted to presenting Bareknuckle Boxing in its purist form in a modernized presentation. Some of these promotions have included the Bareknuckle Boxing promotion out of the United Kingdom or (BKB) for short, not to be confused with the now defunct BKB branded promotion that was owned by United States satellite television provider DirecTV, Bareknuckle FC that regularly stages cards in the state of Wyoming, the World Bareknuckle Fighting Federation (WBKFF), which staged one card also in Wyoming, and finally the Bareknuckle Fighting Championship (BKFC). Like the Bareknuckle FC and WBKFF, the BKFC began in Wyoming, but over the promotion’s seven events have expanded to include Mississippi, Mexico, and Florida.

The BKFC also broke from it’s established model as a pay-per-view attraction with its most recent event earlier this month by streaming the event for free on both digital combat sports network Fite TV and the BKFC’s official YouTube page. Although as this observer has stated in the past, Bareknuckle Boxing provides further opportunities for boxers and other combat sports athletes, a question I have found asking myself is whether or not the sport of Boxing in Bareknuckle form is expanding too quickly?

It is important to remember that up until recently, many states in the United States had an outright ban on bareknuckle combat. While DirecTV’s version of BKB initially began as a gloved-form of Bareknuckle Boxing, it quickly evolved from that to a form of Boxing that included the “BKB Pit” ring with no ropes but adapted the use of standard Boxing gloves. Even though adapting standard Boxing gloves appeared to clear significant hurdles in terms of licensing, sanctioning, and regulation as the last two BKB branded events were held in Las Vegas, NV, the promotion has not staged a card since 2015 and there have been no announcements of further events.

With DirecTV’s brand of BKB having essentially disappeared from the combat sports scene, the other promotions have emerged by presenting Boxing in a pure Bareknuckle format. No special knuckle-exposed gloves, just hand wraps over knuckles. Despite the success promotions like BKB in the United Kingdom, Bareknuckle FC, and the BKFC have had in a short period of time, the hurdles that initially stood in the way of DirecTV’s version of BKB as well as what stood in the way of the sport of Mixed Martial Arts (MMA) for several years in terms of sanctioning and regulation remain ever present.

A new Bareknuckle Boxing promotion will join the fray in September as MMA legend Ken Shamrock will debut his Valor Bareknuckle promotion in its inaugural card in the state of North Dakota that will be televised on a pay-per-view basis on both the cable/satellite medium as well as the digital streaming medium via Fite TV on September 21st. On one hand a new Bareknuckle promotion entering the fray will provide further options for combat athletes, but on the other hand, some might question whether further expansion for the sport will be good in the long-term.

For the sport of MMA, expansion was a relatively slow process with only a handful of notable promotions worldwide, which included the sport’s inception into the United States in the early 1990’s. This was due to the sport initially being presented as a form of no-holds barred combat, which raised the ire of several politicians and thus created a significant roadblock in terms of regulation and sanctioning that took the sport several years to overcome. Though one could make the argument that the struggles that the sport of MMA faced in its early years actually helped the resurgence of Bareknuckle Boxing in a way as by the time the sport began to resurface, MMA had become almost universally sanctioned around the world and this may have led to some state athletic commissions being more open to regulating Bareknuckle Boxing, the question remains as to whether more strict athletic commissions and regulatory boards will be willing to open their doors to the sport.

Some may wonder why that would be a potential obstacle after the evolution of MMA that saw it’s initial no-holds barred format evolve to it’s current form of the use of gloves and weight classes. We should remember why Bareknuckle Boxing was eventually banned in terms of being an organized sport and why Boxing adapted the Marquess of Queensberry rules that include Boxing gloves. While yours truly was obviously not around in those times, as a Boxing historian, I have always been led to believe that the adoption of Boxing gloves primarily had to do with an overall concern for the safety of fighters. It is also worth noting that the scheduled distances of fights prior to the introduction of gloves were significantly greater than what one sees in the sport today where fights were at times scheduled for distances of twenty rounds or more.

Although obviously not every fight that occurred involved such a grueling test of one’s endurance, the effects from an accumulation of punishment sustained in Bareknuckle combat, which resulted in varying injuries that unfortunately included death was something that the sport dealt with. Even today with all the improvements not only in the sport in terms of shorter distances of fights and greater medical knowledge and screening, Boxing and other forms of combat sports do have to deal with the possibility of fighters suffering severe injuries that can at times unfortunately lead to death.

As most knowledgeable Boxing fans know, the sport was recently hit with two separate tragedies that resulted in the deaths of two boxers as a result of injuries sustained in the ring. Jr. Welterweights Maxim Dadashev and Hugo Santillan each passed away days apart after competing in bouts in July. Although these tragedies did not occur in bouts that were sanctioned under Bareknuckle rules and occurred under  the traditional professional Boxing format, the potential for similar circumstances does exist due to no gloves being used in those Bareknuckle bouts and the potential of such could stand in the way of further licensing and regulation clearances among more strict state athletic commissions and regulatory boards around the world.

While the subject of what can make Boxing as a whole and by extension all combat sports safer for the athletes that compete in it is one yours truly plans to discuss in the near future, the resurgence of Bareknuckle Boxing does have a few aspects that I do believe help its case in terms of seeking further clearances to stage cards. Firstly, though Bareknuckle Boxing is a form of professional Boxing, its format differs from the traditional form most are familiar with. Most of the Bareknuckle Boxing promotions use a two minute round format and tend to schedule fights for shorter round distances than the traditional form. Although knockouts under the Bareknuckle format can obviously be brutal, the knockouts tend to come suddenly and do not necessarily occur as a result of an accumulation of punishment over the course of a long fight. What also works in its favor is bouts tend to be stopped appropriately once it is apparent that a fighter is in danger and has had enough.

Whether or not those factors will eventually lead to the Bareknuckle form of the sport being sanctioned and regulated in states such as New York and Nevada remains to be seen. While the fact that several different Bareknuckle promotions have began and will begin operating is a good thing from the standpoint of it opening up further opportunities for athletes across all combat sports disciplines, I do fear however, that by so many promotions/groups emerging in such a short period of time that it will create an over saturation in terms of Bareknuckle events being staged in a calendar year, which could result in it being difficult to grow their respective audiences, but also and more importantly may do more harm than good when it comes to what should be the goal of every Bareknuckle Boxing promotion, to achieve universal licensing and regulation across the board. An achievement that frankly took the sport of MMA too long to accomplish.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

The Boxing Truth®️ is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

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Tuesday, August 20, 2019

Kovalev-Yarde Preview



The recent history of three-time Light-Heavyweight world champion Sergey Kovalev has been marked by highs and lows. A better way to describe it perhaps is ups and downs. As most recall, Kovalev emerged on the Boxing scene by putting together a significant string of knockouts and winning a world championship in the Light-Heavyweight division in the process. Kovalev’s rise was not all that unlike the rise of former longtime Middleweight world champion Gennady Golovkin in that both established reputations as “Knockout Artists” in the sport.

Both however, have seen recent struggles and setbacks in their respective careers. In regard to Golovkin, he has seen his reign atop the Middleweight division come to an end in two hotly contested bouts with Saul “Canelo“ Alvarez. Two fights where he earned a controversial draw and a perhaps more controversial loss in the rematch. While many including this observer felt Golovkin won both fights against Alvarez and expect a third encounter between the two to take place at some point in the future, the loss Golovkin suffered in the second fight did cast some doubt in the eyes of some in regard to how much he might have left as a fighter.

For Sergey Kovalev, his career has seen more than one setback. Some might recall in losing a close, but unanimous decision and the loss of his unified Light-Heavyweight world championship to undefeated Super-Middleweight world champion Andre Ward in November 2016. This was followed by a somewhat controversial stoppage in their rematch in June 2017, the first knockout loss of Kovalev’s career. Following Ward’s retirement later that year, Kovalev was able to rebound and regain a portion of the Light-Heavyweight world championship by scoring a knockout win over Vycheslav Shabranskyy in November 2017.

Although one could say that the politics of the sport played a role in Kovalev fighting for a world championship for a third straight time coming off of consecutive losses to Andre Ward, both losses did have elements of controversy attached to them. It was indisputable however, that Kovalev outclassed Shabranskyy. A victory over a “Game”, but over matched opponent did not quell some of the doubt surrounding Kovalev following those two losses to Ward.

In his first title defense after regaining the WBO world championship in the Light-Heavyweight division, Kovalev would suffer his second knockout loss in brutal fashion at the hands of undefeated top contender Eleider Alvarez in August of last year. As he had done after suffering the first loss of his career against Andre Ward, Kovalev elected to have an immediate rematch against Alvarez in February of this year.

To the surprise of some Kovalev showed he could box and produced one of the better performances of his career by out boxing Alvarez over twelve rounds to regain the WBO championship for the second time. Even though Kovalev has proven on more than one occasion that he is more than a seek and destroy “Knockout Artist”, there are likely those who are skeptical and are questioning how much the thirty-six year old has left at this stage of his career.

While there were ramblings over recent months that Kovalev was at least rumored to fight Saul Alvarez in a bout that would see Alvarez move up in weight to challenge Kovalev for his world championship, the three-time world champion will instead make the first defense of his third reign as champion against undefeated WBO number one contender Anthony Yarde on Saturday in Chelyabinsk, Russia in a fight they can be seen here in the United States on digital sports streaming network ESPN+.

This will be a battle of experience versus youth. Yarde will enter the fight unbeaten in eighteen professional fights. What will make this fight interesting is this will be the first time that Kovalev will be facing a fighter, who much like himself has developed a reputation as a “Knockout Artist.” In his eighteen victories as a professional, Yarde has scored knockouts in seventeen of his eighteen wins registering a career knockout percentage of 94%. This is higher than Kovalev’s career knockout percentage of 76%, but for the majority of his career, Kovalev’s percentage has been above 80% having scored knockouts in twenty-eight of his thirty-three career wins.

Two things that interest me about this fight. Firstly, in regard to the champion is whether he will continue to be more of a boxer than looking to use his punching power. Though Kovalev is more known as a “Knockout Artist”, he has shown he can box. This was noticeable both in his last fight where he regained the WBO championship as well as in his unification bout against future Hall of Famer Bernard Hopkins in November 2014. When he decides to execute a tactical Boxing strategy the champion has proven difficult to combat, perhaps more difficult depending on one’s perspective than when he approaches a fight with the intent of scoring a knockout.

The second aspect of this fight of interest to this observer will center on Anthony Yarde and how he will handle the “Big Fight Atmosphere.” Yarde has established himself as a rising star on the United Kingdom’s Boxing scene, but it is important to remember that despite his impressive resume and near-perfect knockout percentage, this will be his first world championship fight. Fighting for a world championship for the first time alone can understandably cause a fighter’s nerves to be high, but Yarde will also be fighting for that world championship in the champion’s home country where the atmosphere and crowd support will likely be in Kovalev’s favor.

A curiosity that some might wonder as this fight approaches will be how Yarde will attempt to approach Kovalev. Yarde has only been the distance once in his career. It came in the challenger’s second professional fight against Stainislavs Makarenko in June 2015. A fight that went a distance of four rounds.

While this should be taken with a grain of salt given that it was only Yarde’s second fight as a professional, it may serve as an indicator that he might not be intent on going into the deep waters of this fight. Yarde has never fought beyond seven rounds in his career and with the knowledge that Kovalev has been knocked out before, it will be interesting to see if the twenty-eight year old will seek a quick knockout here. A possible interesting tactic the champion could attempt to implement here, despite having the ability to end a fight quickly in his own right is to possibly look to extend the challenger into the middle and late rounds of the fight into territory that Yarde has not yet been in his career.

From a stylistic standpoint, this has all the makings of a fight that might not go the distance on paper. Both fighters have punching power, and both can get an opponent out of there if the opportunity presents itself. The question might be whether or not the thirty-six year old champion will use the experience he has gained throughout his career to his advantage or if he will be more than willing to engage in a shoot out with Yarde where the winner may simply come down to who can land their power punches first. Either way, in an era where the sport’s respective sanctioning organizations are routinely criticized for flaws in their rankings criteria and where sometimes mandatory challengers prove to be not ready to face a world champion on fight night, this is one fight where a world champion will face his mandatory challenger where regardless of the outcome will likely be entertaining for as long as it lasts.


“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”


Kovalev vs. Yarde takes place on Saturday, August 24th at the Traktor Sport Palace in Celyabinsk, Russia. The fight can be seen in the United States on digital subscription sports streaming network ESPN+ beginning at 12:30PM ET/ 9:30AM PT. ESPN+ is available through the ESPN app on mobile, tablet, connected streaming devices like Roku, Apple TV, Amazon Fire TV, Playstation 4, and connected smart TVs for $4.99 per month or $59.99 per year. For more information about ESPN+, a full list of schedules, compatible streaming devices and platforms, and to subscribe please visit: www.espnplus.com. 

In the United Kingdom and Ireland, the fight can be seen on BT Sport 2 beginning at 5PM (Saturday, August 24th Local UK Time.) For more information about BT Sport including schedules and availability in your area please visit: www.sport.bt.com. Check your local listings internationally.

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

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Monday, August 19, 2019

Billel Dib Discusses Opponent change In WBA Oceania Title Defense On September 14TH


Credit: Dragon Fire Boxing

Press Release: August 19, 2019 By Dragon Fire Boxing – Billel Dib is still set for a defence of his WBA Oceania Super Featherweight title on September 14 in Tweets Head, despite an opponent change which sees him clash with the game Carlo Magli in a fight that may propel Dib up the ratings and closer to forcing a fight with champion Andrew Cancio. Dib has a lofty position in the WBA, and his initial fight was scrapped as his original opponent from South Africa was removed from the WBA ratings for unknown reasons, hence the change in opponent. Dib cut straight to the point on his thoughts on the change of opponent.

He said, "I wasn't that bothered about the change in the opponent, to be honest. The result will remain the same which will be a Billel Dib victory. The initial opponent may have helped me force myself into the mandatory position, but I know I still need to look good and put on a good performance and impress those in attendance. "Carlo is a game fighter but I am focused on the job at hand and I will show my levels and show that I am a world champion in waiting."

Dib has been very clear in his ambitions to face world champion Cancio but now has a different challenge which can cause all sorts of issues regarding training camps and from a mental perspective. The highly ranked super featherweight opened up about the importance of putting on a show in order to force the fight with the WBA king. Dib stated, "I have to put on a show on September 14 and that is exactly what I intend on doing. I have to put myself in the shop window to get a crack at the big one, so I'm training as hard as ever for this clash as if I don't I could leave myself open to a shock loss and I am a professional, I wouldn't dream of doing something like that.

"Training hasn't changed much and my mindset hasn't either despite the change of opponent. I am as focused as ever and I know 2020 will be my year and I hopefully will land a world title fight then but I know I have to put on an explosive show on September 14 if I want to make that a reality."

Material and Photo Courtesy of: Dragon Fire Boxing Used with permission.

For more information about Dragon Fire Boxing please vist Dragon Fire Boxing’s official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/DragonFireBoxing.

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.



Sunday, August 18, 2019

GABALLO FACES DANGEROUS VARGAS IN PBC DEBUT


Credit: Sanman Promotions 

Press Release: August 18, 2019 By Sanman Promotions – Former WBA Interim bantamweight champion Raymart Gaballo (W21 KO18 L0 D0) will be facing Yeison Vargas (W17 KO12 L1) of Cartagena, Colombia. Visibly on his record, Vargas has a good knockout rate which should pose danger to the undefeated Filipino. The fight will be showcased in the undercard of the Lara vs. Alvarez fight in August 31 in the US. It will be Gaballo’s debut fight under Al Haymon’s PBC.


Gaballo couldn’t be more excited to fight under a bigger spotlight. I want to show the world what I got. I want to return the trust and support of my team by winning in the most impressive fashion. My opponent is a dangerous pick but that makes it even more exciting. I have worked so hard in my camp and I want to harvest the fruits of my labor by bringing home the win”, Gaballo stated.


Gaballo has been training in the US with Cuban head coach Moro Fernandez. His hardworking manager Sanman CEO Jim Claude Manangquil promised that a stylish win by Gaballo will bring him a bigger fight and probably with a world championship belt. “We are doing our best to arrange a title fight for Gaballo  much more if he beats Vargas with an exclamation point. We are all excited. He worked so hard for this and we wish him the best. We want to take Senator Manny Pacquiao, Sean Gibbons and PBC for giving this opportunity”, Manangquil said.

Material and Photo Courtesy of: Sanman Promotions Used with permission. 

For more information about Sanman Promotions and to watch the Sanman Live Boxing series please visit Sanman Promotions’ official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/SanmanPromotions.

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.




Friday, August 16, 2019

Update

We would like to let our readers know that we are between rounds and will resume our regular schedule on Tuesday, August 20th. Stay tuned. "And That's The Boxing Truth."


The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau 
Denison All Rights Reserved.


Follow Beau Denison on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Beau_Denison

Steve Gago Gunning For Rematch After Dropping Controversial Decision


Credit: No Limit Boxing

Press Release: August 16, 2019 By Dragon Fire Boxing – Steve Gago produced arguably a career-best display this week as many saw him beating former Kazak amateur standout Nursultan Zhangabayev in a fight which had the WBA Inter-Continental, WBO Global and IBF Australiasian Welterweight title on the line.

In a fight which saw a lot of scrappy tactics and points deducted, the vast majority ringside including Australian boxing legends Jeff Fenech and Barry Michael seeing the fight in favour of Gago, who visibly landed the cleaner work throughout but didn't get the judges nod, despite the Kazak conceding 3 point deductions due to low blows.

Gago weighed in on the fight itself and discussed the possibilities of a rematch. He said, "Firstly congratulations to Zhangabayev. Even though I don't agree with the decision I respect the judge's decision. He is a top-class fighter but I showed that I am at that level where he is and that is in the world top 15.

"I would love a rematch as I felt I won the fight. I landed more clean shots and that's what you have to do to win the fight at the end of the day. I believe there is definitely unfinished business and if I have to travel to his adopted home of Sydney or Kazakstan it doesn't really matter I'm willing to do it as I want to prove that I have the ability to compete for world titles." 

Zhangabayev was a product of the same amateur system as Gennady Golovkin, and Gago's manager Tony Tolj also gave his take on the night's proceedings. 

He said, "I personally felt that Steve won the fight. The Kazak kid has a great pedigree and I believe Steve showed that he is at that top level and I'm very proud of his performance. There were 3 point deductions for low blows, very unlucky not to get a DQ win, but thats boxing

"I would welcome a rematch if the offer was right for Steve I mirror his thoughts in saying that there is unfinished business there. They are both quality fighters and I'm sure the rematch would be more explosive as they both know each other now, and it would be a fight where there would be once again, no losers."

Material Courtesy of Dragon Fire Boxing/ Photo Courtesy of No Limit Boxing Used with permission.

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.



Monday, August 12, 2019

Chilean Standout Andres Campos Inks With Tony Tolj And Dragon Fire Boxing


Credit: Dragon Fire Boxing

Press Release: August 12, 2019 By Dragon Fire Boxing – Tony Tolj and Dragon Fire boxing have announced they have signed 22-year-old Chilean amateur standout Andres Campos.

Campos currently holds a 5-0 record in the professional ranks, having been part of Chile's national setup as an amateur between the years of 2013 - 2018. The flyweight won 5 national amateur titles in Chile, alongside multinational tournaments in Chile itself and Brazil. Campos also travelled the world with the Cuban amateur team, spending time in countries such as Cuba for long periods, mastering his craft.


Campos comes to Dragon Fire Boxing as he gets ready to clash for the Chilean flyweight title and also follows in the footsteps of some of the biggest little men around in the Moloney twins. The Chilean opened up about signing with Dragon Fire and Tony Tolj.


He said, "Having an agreement with Tony Tolj and Dragon Fire is very significant to me. I noticed the Dragon Fire team leaves nothing to chance and puts hard work on every detail for a camp and a bout. I am also aware of the quality of your boxers, Tony as a person, and there high professional standard. I want to be a world champion and I know I have to work alongside the best, so as to be ready when my chance comes. I would like to show my own professionalism, dedication, skills and capabilities to be the best."


Campos continued, "I do not want to skip but take every necessary step. My record now is 5-0-0, soon I will fight for the national title in Chile. I want to start an international career and well represent my country too. Despite things have not been easy, I want to try even harder, so being led by you will be more than outstanding.

"From me My parents instilled values, Andres team took care of us as a family in Chile. In fact, the people of Chile were amazing and it's my duty to do my best to guide Andres as best as I can and let the world know of his ability and his character as a man. In this world, you have to give back and it delights me to continue our working relationship."


Tony Tolj gave his take on his latest acquisition, "We are very excited to work with Andres. I believe he will go right to the top in this industry and it was the right move for all parties concerned. We work with fighters all over the world and this will benefit Andres.


"He will fly to Australia on 9th September and as we talked maybe for a few days of 3 months. In my opinion, he is going to be a world champion 100% and we are very confident we can facilitate this for him."

Material and Photo Courtesy of: Dragon Fire Boxing Used with permission.

For more information about Dragon Fire Boxing please visit their official Facebook page: www.facebook.com/DragonFireBoxing

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.




Sunday, August 11, 2019

Ortiz Stops Orozco In 6



Rising undefeated Welterweight prospect Vergil Ortiz scored an impressive sixth round stoppage over veteran contender Antonio Orozco on Saturday night at The Theatre at Grand Prairie in Grand Prairie, TX. Returning to the site where he graduated high school before a enthusiastic home town crowd, it appeared that Ortiz would have some difficulty against the veteran of twenty-nine fights Orozco, who was moving up in weight to the 147lb. Welterweight division after previously competing in the 140lb. Jr. Welterweight division.

Despite being the smaller man, the determined Orozco brought the fight to Ortiz from the start by being willing to engage with Ortiz, a man who had knocked out every previous opponent in his career prior to this fight. Orozco should that he could deal with Ortiz’ power early on and withstood an early barrage from him in the first round when Ortiz had him pressed against the ropes.

As the fight went on, Orozco began to have his moments by coming forward and looking to apply pressure on Ortiz. What was impressive about Orozco’s approach in this fight was he attempted to stay low by crouching and using his head movement as he came forward. This allowed him to do some effective work to the body of Ortiz and also avoid some of the offense that Ortiz through back, particularly during moments where Orozco was able to get Ortiz against the ropes.

Orozco however, was unable to keep Ortiz against the ropes for consistent periods of time and was more than willing to engage with him in the center of the ring where it was not to his advantage in this observer’s eyes. This was clearly the first time that the twenty-one year old Ortiz had faced significant resistance in his career thus far in facing the more experienced thirty-one year old Orozco.

In round six, the unbeaten Ortiz was able to break through that resistance and drop Orozco with a left uppercut that forced Orozco to take a knee. Orozco was able to beat the count, but it became academic as Ortiz pressed forward with a barrage of punches that sent Orozco down for a second time. As he did following the first knockdown, Orozco was able to get up once more, but had the body language of a fighter who was overwhelmed by the attack Ortiz was administering. The punishment continued until Ortiz landed a left hook to the jaw that sent Orozco down for a third and final time as the bout was stopped by Referee Mark Calo-oy at 2:16 of round six.

Vergil Ortiz advances to  14-0, with 14 Knockouts. Antonio Orozco falls to 28-2, with 17 Knockouts.

Also on this card:
  

In a rubber match for the North American Boxing Federation (NABF) Bantamweight championship, champion Joshua Franco retained his title by fighting to a hard-fought ten round split decision draw with rival Oscar Negrete. This was the third consecutive meeting between the two fighters with a draw being rendered in the first fight, Franco earning a split decision win in their second encounter followed by a second draw in the series between the two being declared in this fight. Like the previous two encounters between the two men, this fight saw the ebb and flow go back and forth between the two where exchanges were frequent and neither fighter was really able to stand out clearly from the other in what was an entertaining ten round bout.  Joshua Franco advances to 15-1-2, with 7 Knockouts. Oscar Negrete advances to 18-2-2, with 7 Knockouts.

In a battle for the United States Boxing Council (USNBC) Lightweight championship, undefeated Hector             Tanajara scored an impressive ten round unanimous decision over Ezequiel Aviles. Tanajara dominated the fight from start to finish and never allowed Aviles to work his way into the fight by working off his jab, controlling distance, and mixing in uppercuts and right hands. All three judges scored the fight 100-90 for Tanajara. Hector Tanajara advances to 18-0, with 5 Knockouts. Ezequiel Aviles falls to 16-4-3, with 6 Knockouts.

In the Jr. Welterweight division Marcelino Lopez scored a devastating fifth round knockout over Daniel Echeverria. The first three rounds of this fight were largely controlled by Echevarria due to his ability ti control the distance of the combat as well as working behind a consistent jab. This all changed in round four when Lopez landed a flush right hook to the jaw of Echeverria. Despite going down hard, Echevarria was able to get up. Lopez scored a second knockdown of Echeverria later in the round, but Echeverria was again able to get up and contended that the punch that dropped him, a left hook landed on the back of his head. Just as Echeverria appeared as though he was getting his legs back under him in the fifth round, Lopez ended the night by dropping him for a third and final time with a flush left hook to the jaw. This time, Echeverria was unable to beat the count. Official time of the stoppage was 2:59 of round five. Marcelino Lopez advances to 36-2-1, with 21 Knockouts. Daniel Echevarria falls to 21-9, with 18 Knockouts.


Undefeated Jr. Middleweight Travall Mazon scored an eight round unanimous decision over Jeremy Ramos. Mazon landed a left hook that landed on the temple of Ramos and sent him down to the canvas. Despite being dropped early, Ramos hung in there and was very “Game “ all the way through. Official scores were 80-72 (On two scorecards) and 79-73 all in favor of Mazon. Travall Mazon advances to 15-0, with 12 Knockouts. Jeremy Ramos falls to 11-7, with 4 Knockouts.

Also in the Jr. Middleweight division, unbeaten prospect Alex Rincon scored a second round knockout over Joel Guevara. A flush right hook to the head sent Guevara down at :58 of round two. Alex Rincon advances to 7-0, with 6 Knockouts. Joel Guevara falls to 4-6-1, with 3 Knockouts.


Undefeated Jr. Welterweight George Rincon scored a second round knockout over Enrique Escobar. Official time was 2:13 of round two. George Rincon advances to 8-0, with 5 Knockouts. Enrique Escobar falls to 17-7, with 14 Knockouts.

In the Light-Heavyweight division, undefeated prospect Joshua Juarez scored a six round unanimous decision over Emmanuel Sanchez. Official scores were 59-55, 58-56, and 60-54. Joshua Juarez advances to 9-0, with 4 Knockouts. Emmanuel Sanchez falls to 7-14-1, with 1 Knockout.

Undefeated the Jr. Featherweight Hector Valdez scored a six round unanimous decision over previously undefeated Rafael Delgado. Official scores were 59-54, and 58-55 (On two scorecards) in favor of Valdez. Hector Valdez advances to 11-0, with 7 Knockouts. Rafael Delgado falls to 6-1, with 5 Knockouts.

In the opening bout of this card seventeen year old Tristan Kallkreuth made his professional debut in the Cruiserweight division and only needed forty-two seconds to stop Kynndale Prather, who was competing in his second professional fight.

Tristan Kallkreuth advances to 1-0, with 1 Knockout. Kynndale Prather falls to 0-2, with 0 Knockouts.

This card provided a look at some of the up and coming talent in promoter Oscar De La Hoya’s Golden Boy Promotions stable. Golden Boy Promotions has in it’s near two decade history developed a reputation for developing young fighters who go on to become stars in the sport of Boxing, much like De La Hoya was during his illustrious career as a fighter.

The interesting question coming out of this card will be whether or not Vergil Ortiz at now 14-0, with all 14 of his wins coming by knockout is ready to step up in the caliber of his opposition to face fighters in the 147lb. Welterweight division that are viewed as top contenders if not the elite of the division. It can be tempting when a fighter has knocked out all their opposition up to this point to say their ready for such a significant step up.

In this case it is important to keep in mind that Ortiz is only twenty-one years old and to also keep in mind what has happened in the past with some fighters who were at a similar point in their respective careers as Ortiz is currently, who ended up being pushed too quickly into fights against the upper echelon of a weight class before they were ready for such a significant step up. While some fighters have fared better than others when they have stepped up at a similar stage as Ortiz, it is something that should be approached on an individual basis.

What yours truly means by that is simply what may have worked for one fighter at a similar stage, may not necessarily work for another fighter. Although this observer has spent most of his life covering Boxing and by extension other combat sports, I have never been involved in a fighter’s development and or camp. Having said this, I have always tended to favor a gradual progression process for fighters to work their way through the ranks and continue to develop their skills before attempting to position said fighter for a potential opportunity to fight for a world championship.

Having faced significant resistance for the first time against a world-class fighter in Antonio Orozco, a fighter that had never been stopped, who’s only previous loss prior to this fight came against current unified Jr. Welterweight world champion Jose Ramirez, and still scoring an impressive knockout victory, Vergil Ortiz just may be ready to face someone who is ranked at or near the top-ten in the Welterweight division.  Who Ortiz, who is currently ranked number ten by the World Boxing Association (WBA) will fight next remains to be seen, but if he can continue progressing, it may not be long before he is fighting for a world championship.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

The Boxing Truth® is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

Follow Beau Denison on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Beau_Denison

Saturday, August 10, 2019

GOLDEN BOY AND DAZN TO PRESENT A BIG NIGHT OF BOXING ON MEXICAN INDEPENDENCE DAY WEEKEND!



Credit: Golden Boy Promotions
Press Release: By DAZN/Golden Boy PromotionsLOS ANGELES, CALIF. (Aug. 10, 2019): Golden Boy and DAZN will continue the tradition of delivering pugilistic action on Mexican Independence Day Weekend as Jaime Munguia (33-0, 26 KOs) takes on Patrick Allotey (40-3, 30 KOs) in a 12-round fight for the WBO Junior Middleweight World Title at Dignity Health Sports Park in Carson, Calif. The event will take place on Saturday, September 14and will be streamed live on DAZN

"We're excited to be able to continue this tradition that we know many fans anticipate, and this year we're putting on a series of exhilarating fights that will make for an entertaining night," said Oscar De La Hoya, Chairman and CEO of Golden Boy. "Jaime Munguia is an undefeated world champion who has become one of Mexico's biggest boxing stars. Meanwhile, Patrick Allotey has an impressive skillset with years of experience under his belt. The styles are guaranteed to make a war. We've also put together a full card of action in order to celebrate Mexican Independence Day." 

Munguia is a 22-year-old world champion of Tijuana, Mexico who catapulted to the highest levels of the 154-pound division by knocking out Sadam "World Kid" Ali in May to capture the WBO Junior Middleweight World Title. Since then, Munguia has defended his title against the likes of Liam "Beefy" Smith, Brandon "Bad Boy" Cook, Takeshi Inoueand Dennis Hogan. Munguia will now represent his country on the most important date for Mexican boxing.

"I feel very happy for the opportunity of headlining a card on Sept. 14," said Jaime Munguia. "That's the best date for boxing in the entire year. It's a great date for Mexico because that's when we celebrate Mexican Independence Day. I'm proud and honored to be representing Mexico in the festivals for my country. I'll give my best and I'll try to deliver a great fight for all the people and for those who will see us." 

Allotey is a 28-year-old native of Accra, Ghana who debuted as a professional in 2006 when he was only 16 years old. Though suffering losses against Golden Boy's Patrick Teixeira and standout contender Kanat Islam, Allotey is coming off six victories in a row. 

"I respect Munguia. He is a great fighter," said Patrick Allotey. "But I'm an African warrior, so you know I'll be coming to cause a big surprise."

"I'm very excited for Jaime Munguia's next fight date as he'll be headlining on Sept. 14, which is an important date for Mexico," said Fernando Beltran, President of Zanfer Promotions. "I am very proud because our representative will fight on the most important date for Mexicans. 

In the co-main event, rising sensation Ryan Garcia (18-0, 15 KOs) of Victorville, Calif. will take on Avery "A Plus" Sparrow (10-1, 3 KOs) of Philadelphia, Pennsylvania in a 10-round lightweight fight. 

"Sparrow is basically an undefeated fighter with a good amateur background," Ryan Garcia."People in boxing that know boxing will know this isn't an easy fight. It will not be overlooked."

"I'm thankful to Golden Boy and Russell Peltz for the opportunity," said Avery Sparrow."Ryan Garcia has yet to be tested, and it's a big step up for him. It's not much of a step up in opposition for me. It's his biggest test, not mine. I'm good fighting at 130, but nobody wants to fight me there, so I'm moving up to 135. I look forward to putting on a great show."

"It's a difficult fight for Sparrow," said Russell Peltz. "Once again he has to move up in weight from 130 to 135. None of the 130-pounders want to fight him. However, I am not a big believer that weight difference will determine the outcome. The outcome will be determined by who is the better fighter so long as the judges are fair, and I am sure they will be. Garcia has a prettier record, but Sparrow can more than handle himself."

Pablo Cesar "El Demoledor" Cano (32-7-1, 22 KOs) of Tlalnepantla, Mexico will defend his WBC International Silver Super Lightweight Title in a 12-round fight against Michael "The Artist" Perez (25-3-2, 11 KOs) of Newark, New Jersey. Cano will return from his upset victory over Jorge "El Niño de Oro" Linares, and he will look to fight for a world title at 140 pounds if successful against Perez.

Filipino rising star "Ruthless" Romero Duno (20-1, 15 KOs) will defend his NABO Lightweight Title in a 10-round fight.

Armenian contender Azat "Crazy A" Hovhannisyan (17-3, 14 KOs) will return in a 10-round super bantamweight clash.

Alejandro "Pin Pon" Reyes of Los Angeles, Calif. will make his professional debut in a four-round lightweight fight against Jorge Padron (3-4, 3 KOs) of Sonora, Mexico.

Additional undercard information will be announced shortly.

Munguia vs. Allotey is a 12-round fight for the WBO Junior Middleweight Championship presented by Golden Boy in association with Zanfer Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, "THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING," Hennessy "Never Stop. Never Settle," and Orange Crush. The event will take place Saturday, Sept. 14at Dignity Health Sports Park and will be streamed live on DAZN.  

Tickets for Munguia vs. Allotey go on sale Tuesday, August 13 at 10:00 a.m. PT. Tickets are priced at $200, $100, $50 and $25, plus applicable taxes, fees and services charges. Tickets can be purchased at goldenboytickets.comhttps://www.axs.com/, by phone at 888-9-AXS-TIX (888-929-7849), and at Dignity Health Sports Park Box Office (Monday through Fridayfrom 10 a.m. PT to 6 p.m. PT). VIP Suites are available by calling 877-604-8777. For more information on group discounts or VIP packages, call 877-234-8425.

For more information, visit www.goldenboypromotions.com and DAZN.com. Follow on Twitter @GoldenBoyBoxing and @DAZN_USA. Become a fan on Facebook at 
Follow on Instagram @GoldenBoy and @DAZN_USA. Follow the conversation using #MunguiaAllotey

Material Courtesy of: DAZN/Photo Courtesy of: Golden Boy Promotions Used with permission.

The Boxing Truth®️is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

Thursday, August 8, 2019

Alvarez, Golovkin, Derevyanchenko, The IBF, And “The Politics“ Of Boxing



One of the most consistent themes in recent years here at The Boxing Truth®️ has been an ongoing chronicle of Boxing’s storied Middleweight division. To be more specific, what appeared to be a gradual progression towards determining one Undisputed world champion in the division in what would be the first since Bernard Hopkins began unifying the division in the early 2000’s before finally completing the process by knocking out then WBO world champion Oscar De La Hoya in September 2004.

The very goal of determining one undisputed champion in any division in Boxing and also the task of keeping the championship fully unified is one that while not impossible, is certainly difficult to achieve. Difficult for several reasons, but one reason that most Boxing fans and experts point to is the political landscape that surrounds the sport. Although some are quick to point out the flaws of the sport and all too often also quick to accuse the respective sanctioning organizations that govern Boxing of corruption, at times rightly, sometimes not, there are other factors that play a role in how difficult it can be to determine an undisputed champion. Factors such as rival promoters refusing to work together to make unification fights happen, competing television networks/platforms, who by paying significant rights fees want exclusivity to a promoter’s respective stable of fighters, and at times a fighter’s reluctance to face other champions in his/her respective weight class can all play a factor and unfortunately serve as roadblocks to an undisputed champion being crowned.

If the reader is starting to feel confused by all of the above and are possibly concerned about the possibility of getting a migraine headache from trying to understand it all, this observer will try his best to make it as painless as possible. First and foremost, this column will not be a long drawn out explanation of all of the above in great detail. Quite frankly, it would take a book perhaps two, or even three written by yours truly to go over every single aspect of the politics of the sport in great detail. While that might be something to ponder in the future, the reader should think of the factors listed above as examples.

This column will however, focus on one political element that does come up frequently for fighters who achieve status as a unified world champion. The obligation of fulfilling mandatory title defenses annually as determined by the respective organizations who’s world championships a fighter holds.

One of the stories that generated significant attention in the last week was the decision of the International Boxing Federation (IBF) to strip current unified Middleweight world champion Saul ‘Canelo” Alvarez of its World Middleweight championship. A decision made by the organization following the failure of the champion, his promoter Golden Boy Promotions, and current mandatory challenger Sergiy Derevyanchenko to come to terms for a mandatory title defense.

As readers will likely remember Alvarez, the WBC/WBA world champion successfully added the IBF crown to his unified championship with his victory over IBF world champion Daniel Jacobs earlier this year. As can happen when unification bouts take place, Alvarez by virtue of defeating Jacobs inherited the obligation to meet the IBF’s number one contender Derevyanchenko within a certain period of time. What makes the decision of the IBF somewhat perplexing is the claim of Alvarez that he was unaware of the deadline set by the organization for him and Derevyanchenko to come to terms for a fight to fulfill the mandatory defense. Whether or not Alvarez or his promoter Golden Boy Promotions were aware of the deadline now appears to be a moot point as the IBF has already mandated Derevyanchenko to meet former Middleweight world champion Gennady Golovkin, the IBF’s two top Middleweight contenders for the vacant championship.

Although it is understandable how fans can and often do criticize sanctioning organizations whenever a situation like this occurs, it is not uncommon for an organization like the IBF to obligate a champion to agree to meet a mandatory challenger before a unification bout between two world champions takes place as to ensure that the winner of said unification bout agrees to fulfill his/her obligations going forward. It is also not uncommon to see a negotiation process for a mandatory title defense take place shortly after a unification bout occurs.

Such circumstances where a unified champion either outright refuses to fulfill those obligations and/or cannot agree to terms for those defenses are essentially the reason why some organizations have adopted interim/regular champion designations in their respective rankings for their mandatory challengers, most notably the World Boxing Association (WBA). As this observer has said often over the years, such designations, though well-intended actually seems to create more confusion and problems than it actually solves.

In regard to Alvarez, it was also recently announced that he would not be fighting in September of this year, which was believed to be his intended target to return to the ring. This also resulted in some criticism being pointed in the direction of digital sports streaming network DAZN, who made headlines last year in signing Alvarez to a mult-year/fight agreement worth reportedly $365 Million. As most know, this was significant as it marked a major transition for Alvarez, one of the sport’s biggest pay-per-view draws, moving away from the pay-per-view medium and becoming one of the first stars in the sport to move toward the subscription-based digital streaming medium, which is the model of DAZN.

Now, in the interest of objectivity, I feel it appropriate to once again remind the reader as this observer has done in the past when discussing DAZN, and the benefits of the subscription-based streaming medium in various columns here at The Boxing Truth®️ that I do not currently work for DAZN or any other network, outlet, or platform outside of my own platform here. Having said this, it is no secret that I have been supportive of the work DAZN as well as other platforms like ESPN+ and Fite TV have done not just for Boxing, but for all of sports overall as I feel it offers the consumer a better and generally more economically reasonable option compared to the traditional pay-per-view model and increasingly expensive single sports packages.

In terms of Boxing and by extension all of combat sports, the Over The Top (OTT) streaming medium has opened up doors for promoters that were not necessarily available on traditional television. How often did we hear over the years prior to the advent of digital streaming platforms that a fighter was inactive due to a network not having available dates to televise a fight, or a promoter not being able to stage as many cards as they could because of lack of an available television network to broadcast said events and/or only being willing to commit to a limited window of dates? This is something that has largely been solved with the advent of streaming.

There are however, some things that will remain a part of the business landscape of Boxing even as the sport is moving in a better, more consumer-friendly direction. Unfortunately among them, are some fights that may be in significant public demand, being delayed from taking place. Some of the criticism that has been directed towards DAZN has been the perceived failure to bring a third fight between Alvarez and Gennady Golovkin, who is also signed to DAZN, to fruition in a reasonable timeframe at least in the eyes of some.

It is important to remember that while multi-sport digital sports streaming networks like DAZN, while serving as a game changer in sports television are still very much in the growing stages. Even though from a cynical point of view it is easy to say that given the amounts of money that are involved that it is and would be easy for a network like DAZN to essentially mandate a fight to take place through contractual agreements, the fighters, their camps, and their respective promoters also play a significant role in when a fight like a potential third Alvarez-Golovkin fight takes place.

The digital subscription-based streaming model may indeed be new, fresh, and an economically beneficial choice for consumers, but some old tactics in terms of Boxing remain. What could be the silver lining for all involved that will both keep public interest high and ultimately quell criticism towards DAZN? In this observer’s eyes there is one obvious answer.

One of DAZN’s strongest assets in terms of Boxing currently is all of the Middleweight world championships currently belong to fighters who compete on its platform, this excludes those fighters who currently hold interim/regular champion designations, who might compete on other platforms and also keeping in mind that the World Boxing Council (WBC) recently designated Alvarez as it’s “Franchise Champion “ due in part to his status as a unified world champion.

While that subject is one to discuss at a later time, the point is that DAZN will likely be the stage where a unification tournament will take place over time to fully unify the Middleweight division. Despite Alvarez being stripped of the IBF championship, if a fight between Derevyanchenko and Golovkin takes place for the vacant championship, it will take place on DAZN’s platform. Demetrius Andrade, the current World Boxing Organization (WBO) world champion is also signed to DAZN and has been looking for a fight with either Golovkin or Alvarez. This sets up a scenario where either the Derevyanchenko-Golovkin winner faces either Alvarez or Andrade, or Alvarez and Andrade meet to unify their portions of the World Middleweight championship before facing the winner of Derevyanchenko-Golovkin.

What this could potentially set up assuming both Alvarez and Golovkin continue to win would be the much-anticipated third bout between the two, but this time potentially with the Undisputed world championship in the Middleweight division on the line. If this is indeed the goal of the promoters involved, it would somewhat justify the stalling tactics that tend to frustrate Boxing fans. Of course, this is all a theoretical scenario and the possibility certainly exists that both Alvarez and Golovkin could lose to either Derevyanchenko or Andrade, which would throw a monkey wrench into any potential plans for a third fight between the two. All of the above however, would be seen on DAZN, which would ultimately be a win for Boxing and the fans/consumers who support the sport.

“And That’s The Boxing Truth.”

The Boxing Truth®️ is a registered trademark of Beau Denison All Rights Reserved.

Follow Beau Denison on Twitter: www.twitter.com/Beau_Denison