Top Rank Boxing http://www.toprank.com Top Rank boxing news, event, videos and photo galleries en-us Copyright Top Rank 06-25-2016 09:19:21 60 Viktor Postol/Freddie Roach Blog: Part 1 http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-viktor-postolfreddie-roach-blog-part-1/  

Do you feel like the underdog in this fight? What would a win do for your career?

VIKTOR POSTOL:

"I do not consider myself an underdog in this fight. Terence Crawford's fans might consider me as the underdog but that does not bother me. I'm 100% confident in myself and in my victory on July 23rd and the reasons are simple.  I work harder in training camp than my opponents because I have to. Because I want to. I have the best trainer working with me and his name his Freddie Roach. He has been named Trainer of the Year a record seven times and he is in the Hall of Fame. Crawford has no one like that on his team. Since I have been training with Freddie I have knocked out two of the three opponents I have faced -- Lucas Matthysse and Selcuk Aydin. Both were No. 2 world-rated contenders and both times I was considered the underdog. I have passed every test that I have taken as a professional fighter and with the best teacher in boxing working with me I intend to pass this one on July 23rd with flying colors. This victory will prove to everyone that I am the best fighter at 140 pounds and the king of the division."

 

FREDDIE ROACH:

"I do not feel that Viktor is an underdog going into this fight. Why should I? In his two toughest tests -- Lucas Matthysse and Selcuk Aydin -- he didn't just knock them out, he took their will to fight away. He broke them down brick by brick. His experience against blue chip opposition has been great preparation for his fight with Terence Crawford. Don't get me wrong. I have a lot of respect for Crawford. He has a lot of talent. But I think this is going to come down to resumes and I think Postol has fought tougher and better opponents than Crawford. Postol even spent an entire training camp with Manny Pacquiao in 2014 when Manny was preparing for Chris Algieri. Viktor more than held his own against Manny. Crawford is going to find out that defending a title against Hank Lundy and Dierry Jean is a lot different than fighting a fellow undefeated world champion like Viktor Postol. A win for Viktor will mean that the U.S. and the world has a new star in boxing. A star as bright as boxing has ever seen."  

The HBO Sports Special, Terence Crawford: My Fight, debuts Saturday, July 9 at 11:15 p.m. on HBO.

Crawford vs. Postol takes place Saturday, July 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT.   

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Tue, 21 Jun 2016 09:39:30 -0500
Terence Crawford/Brian McIntyre Blog: Part 1 http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-terence-crawfordbrian-mcintyre-blog-part-1/ How will it feel fighting in Vegas for first time?  PPV for the first time?

TERENCE CRAWFORD

"It is an honor to fight in Las Vegas, especially at the MGM Grand where so many historic fights have taken place and so many great fighters have made their mark. It's the same way I felt when I headlined my first card at Madison Square Garden earlier this year. Many fighters dream of fighting on such a big stage but it's something you have to earn. I have worked very hard to get to this point in my career -- to earn the right to headline my first pay-per-view event. I can't think of a better place to do it than in the Fight Capital of the World. It's very exciting, but I need to keep my eye on the ball. There will be a lot of hard work to do in training camp to make my pay-per-view debut successful. This isn't just opening night for a new phase of my career. I want this to be the beginning of a long run as boxing's next pound for pound star and a worthy successor to Manny Pacquiao and Floyd Mayweather Jr."

BRIAN McINTYRE:

"Fighting in Las Vegas in the main event and headlining a pay-per-view is a tremendous honor. Years ago I never imagined we would get to this point. We are representing Omaha on the biggest stage boxing has to offer and Terence is not about to let his hometown down. He is proud to represent Omaha and he will be carrying that pride in his heart and soul when he enters the ring on July 23rd and beats Viktor Postol. We know we are in this position because of hard work and more hard work. And with hard work came success, success that produced an undefeated record against the best fighters and two world titles in two different divisions. No one has ever been able to outthink or outfight Terence and that's a lesson Postol is going to learn the hard way -- in front of a very big audience."          

The HBO Sports Special, Terence Crawford: My Fight, debuts Saturday, July 9 at 11:15 p.m. on HBO.

Crawford vs. Postol takes place Saturday, July 23 at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at9:00 p.m. ET/6:00 p.m. PT. 

 

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Mon, 20 Jun 2016 16:50:39 -0500
Martínez y Lomachenko prometen guerra en el Madison Square Garden http://www.toprank.com/news/martinez-y-lomachenko-prometen-guerra-en-el-madison-square-garden/ NUEVA YORK (9 de junio del 2016) - El ucraniano Vasyl 'Hi-Tech' Lomachenko y el boricua Román 'Rocky' Martínez se vieron cara a cara en la tarde de hoy en 'La Gran Manzana' durante la conferencia de prensa final del cartel en el cual chocarán este sábado, 11 de junio -- en la víspera de la parada puertorriqueña -- en 'El Teatro' del Madison Square Garden. Tanto Lomachenko, como Martínez prometieron un combate lleno de acción.

Lomachenko (5-1, 3 KO's), un dos-veces medallista de oro olímpico y actual campeón peso pluma de la  Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB), subirá de división para retar a Martínez (29-2-3, 17 KOs) por el título junior ligero de la OMB. Ante Martínez, Lomachenko intentará hacer historia al convertirse en el primer peleador en ser campeón mundial en dos divisiones en tan sólo siete peleas profesionales.

“La preparación fue muy buena. Me siento muy bien y estoy listo para esta pelea. Yo sólo espero que el sábado me enfrente al mejor ‘Rocky’ Martínez. Yo creo que este será un combate muy bueno, ya que ambos somos campeones. Será interesante,” dijo Lomachenko.

Por su parte, 'Rocky' Martínez aseguró que retendrá su título exitosamente ante Lomachenko.

"Yo voy a subir como campeón y voy a bajar como campeón. Yo confío en mi preparación. Estoy listo para lo que Lomachenko traiga el sábado y sé que tengo las herramientas para derrotarlo," dijo el veterano peleador boricua. "Si él me quiere ganar, va a tener que matarme, pero para matarme él también va a tener que estar dispuesto a morir,” finalizó diciendo Martínez.

En el combate co-estelar del cartel, el invicto contendiente boricua Félix 'El Diamante' Verdejo (21-0, 14 KO’s) defenderá su título latino peso ligero de la OMB y arriesgará su invicto ante el mexicano Juan José 'Piquet' Martínez (25-2, 17 KO's) en la pelea que abrirá la transmisión de la cadena HBO.

“He estado bien enfocado en esta pelea. Me siento muy bien físicamente y mentalmente. Ha sido un campo de entrenamiento excelente. Estoy preparado para el sábado. Voy a seguir desarrollándome para ser un gran campeón en este deporte,” dijo 'El Diamante' del boxeo boricua.

El 'Piquet' Martínez dejó claro que no vino a vacacionar a Nueva York

“Sabemos que Verdejo es un buen peleador que es fuerte y rápido, pero no vinimos aquí de paseo, vinimos a dar pelea, a complicarle la noche y a llevarnos ese título a México,” garantizó el púgil azteca.

Además, el dos-veces campeón olímpico, el ídolo del boxeo chino Zou Shiming (7-1, 2 KO's) realizará su debut en los Estados Unidos cuando se mida a Jozsef Ajtai (15-2, 10 KO's) en la parte del respaldo de la función que serán transmitidos en vivo por www.TopRank.tv

También los invictos prospectos Christopher ‘Pitufo’ Díaz (16-0, 10 KO’s), Julian 'Hammer Hands' Rodríguez (12-0, 9 KO's), Mike 'Yes Indeed' Reed (18-0, 10 KO's)  y Jean Carlos 'Chapito' Rivera (6-0, 3 KO's) verán acción en los combates preliminares que se transmitirán a través del app Top Rank TV.

Los combates titulares Martínez vs. Lomachenko y Verdejo vs. Martínez serán televisados desde las 10pm ET/PT por la cadena HBO.

En una promoción de Top Rank®, en asociación con Puerto Rico Best Boxing y Diamante Promotions, SECA y Madison Square Garden, las taquillas restantes para la doble tanda estelar Martínez vs. Lomachenko / Verdejo vs. Martínez a precios de: $300, $200, $100, $50 y $35, pueden ser adquiridos en la boletería del Madison Square Garden, todos los puntos de venta Ticketmaster, cargando por teléfono llamando a Ticketmaster al 866-858-0008, y en los sitios web: www.TicketMaster.com y www.TheGarden.com.

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Thu, 09 Jun 2016 18:12:17 -0500
Listos Félix ‘El Diamante’ Verdejo y Christopher ‘Pitufo’ Díaz para comenzar la fiesta boricua en ‘La Gran Manzana’ http://www.toprank.com/news/listos-felix-el-diamante-verdejo-y-christopher-pitufo-diaz-para-comenzar-la-fiesta-boricua-en-la-gran-manzana/

 
FOTOS: Entrenamiento de medios de Verdejo y 'Pitufo' en P.R.
 
SAN JUAN, P.R. (6 de junio del 2016) – Los jóvenes púgiles puertorriqueños Félix ‘El Diamante’ Verdejo y Christopher 'Pitufo' Díaz aseguraron estar preparados para comenzar la fiesta boricua en la cartelera que se celebrará este sábado, 11 de junio -- en la víspera de la parada puertorriqueña -- en el 'El Teatro' del Madison Square Garden.
 
Verdejo (21-0, 14 KO’s), actual monarca latino peso ligero de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB), defenderá su título y arriesgará su invicto ante el mexicano Juan José 'Piquet' Martínez (25-2, 17 KO's) en el combate co-estelar del cartel que será estelarizado por el choque por el título junior ligero de la OMB entre el ucraniano Vasyl ‘Hi-Tech’ Lomachenko y el boricua Román 'Rocky' Martínez.
 
“Me siento listo para comenzar esa gran fiesta boricua en Nueva York. Estoy lleno de optimismo y deseoso de que suene la campana para regalarle a mi gente una gran pelea frente a un duro rival que también viene a dar un gran combate,” dijo Verdejo, quien realizará la quinta defensa de su título. 
 
Por su parte, el invicto prospecto barranquiteño Christopher ‘Pitufo’ Díaz (16-0, 10 KO’s) enfrentará a Neftalí Campos (11-1, 9 KO’s) en un combate a ocho asaltos en la división peso pluma en una de las peleas preliminares del cartel que serán transmitidas en vivo por www.TopRank.tv y a través del app móvil ‘Top Rank TV’.
 
“Estoy emocionado con esta nueva oportunidad de pelear en el Madison Square Garden ante todos esos boricuas que estarán allí apoyándonos en este nuevo duelo de México vs. Puerto Rico,” dijo el llamado ‘Hijo de la Montaña’.
 
Ricky Márquez, entrenador y manejador de Verdejo y Díaz, añadió: “estamos positivos, pero sin sobre confiarnos ante el reto de estos rivales mexicanos ya que sabemos de su fuerza y reciedumbre.”
 
Los combates titulares Martínez vs. Lomachenko y Verdejo vs. Martínez serán televisados desde las 10pm ET/PT por la cadena HBO.
 
En una promoción de Top Rank®, en asociación con Puerto Rico Best Boxing y Diamante Promotions, SECA y Madison Square Garden, las taquillas restantes para la doble tanda estelar Martínez vs. Lomachenko / Verdejo vs. Martínez a precios de: $300, $200, $100, $50 y $35, pueden ser adquiridos en la boletería del Madison Square Garden, todos los puntos de venta Ticketmaster, cargando por teléfono llamando a Ticketmaster al 866-858-0008, y en los sitios web: www.TicketMaster.com y www.TheGarden.com.
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Mon, 06 Jun 2016 18:40:29 -0500
Gilberto Ramírez y ÓscarValdéz estelarizarán respaldo de lujo el 23 de julio en Las Vegas http://www.toprank.com/news/gilberto-ramirez-y-oscarvaldez-estelarizaran-respaldo-de-lujo-el-23-de-julio-en-las-vegas/ FOTOS: Conferencia de Prensa Preliminares Crawford vs. Postol
 
LAS VEGAS, NV (31 de mayo del 2016) – El invicto campeón supermediano de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB) Gilberto ‘Zurdo’ Ramírez y el dos-veces olímpico mexicano Óscar Valdéz estelarizarán las preliminares del evento que será protagonizado por la batalla unificatoria entre Terence ‘Bud’ Crawford y ‘The Iceman’ Viktor Postol.
 
Ramirez (34-0, 24 KO’s), realizará la primera defensa del título que le arrebató a ‘King’ Arthur Abraham el pasado mes de abril. El ‘Zurdo’ defenderá su campeonato ante el alemán Dominik Britsch (32-2-1, 11 KOs).
 
“Estoy muy emocionado por hacer mi primera defensa de título mundial. Estoy trabajando duro para que sea una defensa exitosa, ya que planeo ser campeón por mucho tiempo,” dijo Ramírez. “Dominik es un retador difícil y fuerte. No sé mucho de él, pero entrenaré duro como siempre. Se siente tremendo estar en otro evento de HBO Pay-Per-View. Algún día quisiera estar en el evento estelar de un Pay-Per-View. Esa meta me motiva a dar lo mejor de mi.”
 
“Estoy muy contento de pelear ante el mejor supermediano del mundo – el campeón mundial Gilberto Ramírez,” dijo Britsch. "Mi lema es, ‘Solo esos que se arriesgan a perder, pueden ganar’. Gilberto estoy listo para ti.”
 
Valdéz (20-0, 17 KOs), quién viene de conseguir un impresionante triunfo por nocaut técnico ante el excampeón mundial Evgeny Gradovich, batallará ante el segundo clasificado contendor peso pluma, el argentino Matias ‘La Cobrita’ Rueda. El combate Valdéz vs. Rueda podría ser por el vacante título peso pluma de la OMB. 
 
“Al mirar mis últimas peleas, realmente creo que me he ganado la oportunidad de pelear por un título mundial,” dijo Valdéz. “Ahora es el momento de tomar vantaje de esta oportunidad.”
 
“Aunque esta será mi segunda pelea en los Estados Unidos y muchos piensan que no soy el favorito, voy a sorprender a muchos fans,” dijo Rueda. “Yo respeto a mi oponente, pero voy a Las Vegas con una sola cosa en mente – ganar el título y traerlo conmigo a Argentina. Pueden estar seguros de eso.”
 
La transmisión del Pay-Per-View comenzará con la pelea entre José Benavídez Jr.(24-0, 16 KOs), quien arriesgará su record invicto y su clasificación mundial, en una batalla peso welter a diez asaltos ante el californiano Francisco ‘Chia’ Santana(24-4-1, 12 KOs).
 
“Esta pelea es muy importante porque quiero demostrarle a todos que estoy listo para derrotar a peleadores de clase mundial en la división peso welter,” dijo Benavídez. “Sé que Santana es un buen peleador, pero tengo lo necesario para derrotarlo el 23 de julio.”
 
“Me siento extremadamente bendecido de pelear ante Benavídez en HBO Pay-Per-View. Él es un peleador talentoso, pero estoy listo para demostrarle al mundo que soy un peleador elite y un futuro campeón mundial,” dijo Santana. “Veo esta pelea como un paso más cerca de un título mundial.
 
El evento de Pay-Per-View Crawford vs. Postol se celebrará el sábado, 23 de julio en el MGM Gran Garden Arena en Las Vegas, Nevada. El evento será producido y distribuido en vivo por HBO Pay-Per-View®  comenzando a las  9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.
 
En una promoción de Top Rank®, en asociación con Tecate y  'Hands of Stone’, taquillas restantes para el evento Crawford vs. Postol, a precios de: $304, $204, $104 y $54, sin incluir los cargos aplicables, pueden ser adquiridos cargando por teléfono con tarjeta de crédito llamando a AXS  al (888) 929-7849. Los boletos también estarán disponibles para compra en los sitios web: www.MGMgrand.com o www.AXScom.  
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Tue, 31 May 2016 18:05:22 -0500
Three World Championship Bouts on Crawford-Postol Card http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-three-world-championship-bouts-on-crawford-postol-card/ LAS VEGAS, NV (May 31, 2016) --  GILBERTO "Zurdo" RAMIREZ, Mexico's undefeated World Boxing Organization (WBO) super middleweight world champion with the matinee idol looks and two-time Mexican Olympian and undefeated No. 1 featherweight contender ÓSCAR VALDEZ, will headline the pay-per-view undercard topped by the junior welterweight world title unification battle between undefeated world champions TERENCE "Bud" CRAWFORD and "The Iceman" VIKTOR POSTOL.   Ramirez will be making the first defense of the championship crown he decisively won from three-time world champion "King" Arthur Abraham in April.  Ramirez will be defending his title against  DOMINIK BRITSCHValdez will rumble with undefeated No. 2 world-rated contender MATÍAS "La Cobrita" RUEDA for the vacant WBO featherweight world title.  The pay-per-view telecast will open with former interim world champion  JOSE BENAVIDEZ, JR, risking his undefeated record and Top-10 world-rating, in a 10-round welterweight battle against FRANCISCO "Chia" SANTANA.

The eight pay-per-view warriors boast a combined record of 216-6-2 (135 KOs) -- a winning percentage of 96% with nearly 2/3 of their victories coming by way of knockout.  

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Tecate and the motion picture "Hands of Stone,"  the Terence Crawford - Viktor Postol world championship pay-per-view event will take place on Saturday, July 23, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®  beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.

Remaining tickets to Crawford vs. Postol are priced at $304, $204, $104, and $54, not including applicable service feesTo charge by phone with a major credit card, call AXS at (888) 929-7849.  Tickets are also available for purchase at mgmgrand.com or www.AXS.com (http://bit.ly/24ORYhs)    

"I am very excited to be making my first world title defense.  I am working hard to make it a successful defense as I plan to be a world champion for a long time," said Ramirez.  "Dominik is a tough challenger, very strong.  I don't know a lot about him personally but I will train hard as always.  It feels great being on another HBO Pay-Per- View event.  One day I want to be in the main event of a pay per view.  That goal motivates me to do my best."

"I am very happy to be fighting the No. 1 super middleweight -- world champion Gilberto Ramirez," said Britsch.  "My slogan is, 'Only those who dare to lose can win.'  Gilberto, I am ready for you." 

"I really believe that looking at my past few fights I have earned the opportunity to fight for a world championship," said Valdez.  "Now is the time to take advantage of this opportunity."

"Although this will be my second fight in the U.S. and many people might think I am not the favorite, I will surprise lots of fans," said Rueda.  "I respect my opponent, but I am going to Las Vegas determined and with only one thing on my mind – winning the belt and bringing it back to Argentina with me.  You can all be sure of that.  My opponent is going to lose.  I respect him, he is a very good fighter, but he will lose."

"This fight is very important because I want to show everyone that I am ready to beat world-class fighters in the welterweight pound division," said Benavidez.  "I know Santana is a good fighter but I have what it takes to outclass and beat him on July 23.  I have been training hard and am more than ready to show what I bring to the table on fight night and prove I belong."

"I feel extremely blessed to be fighting against Benavidez on HBO Pay-Per-View.  He is a talented fighter but I am ready to rise to the occasion and prove to the world that I am an elite fighter and a future world champion," said Santana.  "I view this fight as getting me one step closer to a world title shot.  On the night we get into the ring I will live up to my motto - 'Train, Fight, Win' - one fight at a time."

Ramirez (34-0, 24 KOs), a two-fisted super middleweight wrecking machine who hails from Mazatlan, Mexico, made history in the co-main event to the Manny Pacquiao vs. Timothy Bradley welterweight pay-per-view on April 9 when he became Mexico's first fighter to win a super middleweight world title.  Entering the fight as the top world-rated contender, Ramirez gave a virtuoso performance over the defending WBO champion Abraham.  All three judges scored it as a 120-108 blitzkrieg.  "I took him to Mexican boxing school," a jubilant Ramirez boasted as he put on the world championship belt .  A sensational young champion, Ramirez, 24, has won four of his last eight bouts by knockout.  Career-highlight performances include an NABF and NABO title victory over Giovanni Lorenzo via fifth-round stoppage, a WBO International title knockout victory over Junior Talipeau and a successful defense of his NABF and WBO International titles, stopping Fulgencio Zuniga in the eighth round, all in 2014.  Last year he successfully defended his titles via unanimous decisions over once-beaten Maxim Vlasov, division gate keeper Derek Edwards, who boasts a KO victory over world champion Badou Jack, and once-beaten Gevorg Khatchikian, who had scored knockouts in five of his last six victories.

Britsch (32-2-1, 11 KOs), of Neckarsulm, Germany, enters this fight riding a four bout winning streak  and having won six of his last seven bouts dating back to 2013.  Known for his body punching prowess and his excellent skills and movement, Britsch's trophy case features the International Boxing Federation (IBF) Intercontinental middleweight and German super middleweight championship belts.  This will be his first fight in the U.S. since 2011.

Valdez (20-0, 17 KOs), who represented Mexico in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics, was the first Mexican fighter to qualify for two Olympic games and is considered one of the bright lights of the featherweight division and a new face for boxing's next generation.  In his last fight, on the undercard of the April 9 Pacquiao-Bradley pay-per-view, Valdez solidified his status as the World Boxing Council (WBC) and WBO No. 1 contender by scoring a fourth-round TKO of former IBF featherweight world champion Evgeny Gradovich.  It was the first time Gradovich had ever been stopped in his 24-bout professional career.  On the undercard of Pacquiao - Bradley II welterweight world championship rematch in 2014, Valdez captured the NABF super featherweight junior title, knocking out Adrian Perez in the fourth round.  Valdez successfully defended that title twice in 2014, knocking out Noel Echevarria and Alberto Gonzalez in the sixth and seventh rounds, respectively.  From Nogales, Sonora, Mexico Valdez, 25, won all four of his  2015 fights -- three by knockout.  He fashioned a third-round blasting of Jose Ramirez on April 11, in Laredo, Texas.  Valdez followed that with his live HBO debut, winning a dominant 10-round unanimous decision over one-time world title challenger Ruben Tamayo on June 27  in Carson, Calif.  He ended 2015 with knockout victories of top-10 contender and one-time world title challenger Chris Avalos and Ernes Sanchez on September 11 and December 12, respectively.  The four fighters boasted a combined record of 91-19-5.

Rueda (26-0, 23 KOs), from Tandil, Buenos Aires, Argentina, enters this world championship fight having won his last 10 fights by way of knockout which he credits to  his exciting "seek and destroy" style and deadly punching power.  He has made six defenses of the WBO Latino featherweight title he captured in 2013 via a third-round knockout of Juan Solis,  On January 16, he also became the South American featherweight champion, scoring an eighth round knockout of Leandro Mendes.  In his last fight, which took place on April 2, Rueda iced Nestor Pamigua in the third round to successfully defend both of his titles.    

Benavidez (24-0, 16 KOs), from Phoenix, AZ, won his first world title in 2014 when he won a hotly-contested unanimous decision over defending World Boxing Association (WBA) interim super lightweight champion Mauricio Herrera.  After one successful title defense -- a 12th-round knockout of Jorge Paez, Jr. in 2015 -- Benavidez vacated the title to move up to the welterweight division.  His debut in the heavier weight class took place on December 12, where he won a blistering 10-round  unanimous over Sidney Siqueira.  An amateur standout, at 16, Benavidez was the youngest boxer to ever win the National Golden Gloves Championships, in 2009.  He was also the youngest boxer, at 17, to be licensed by the Nevada State Athletic Commission.  An exception was made for the minimum age requirement of 18 years because of his exceptional talent.  Benavidez is currently the WBA's No. 6 world-rated welterweight contender.     

Santana (24-4-1, 12 KOs), from Santa Barbara, Calif., enters this fight having won 12 of his last 13 bouts, with half of those victories coming by way of knockout..  A favorite of Southern California fight fans because of his exciting style and two-fisted power, Santana boasts several notable victories including a first-round knockout of undefeated contender Kendal Mena for the WBA International welterweight title in 2015, and back-to-back  unanimous decisions over former world champion Joachim Alcine and Freddy Hernandez in 2013.  In his last fight, on April 2, he scored a 10-round unanimous decision over Edward Paredes.       

For fight updates go to www.toprank.com, or www.hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/trboxingfacebook.com/trboxeo or facebook.com/hboboxing, and on Twitter at twitter.com/trboxing, twitter.com/trboxeo, or twitter.com/hboboxing.  Use the Hashtag #CrawfordPostol to join the conversation on Twitter. 

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FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Media):

 

TOP RANK

Lee Samuels:  702-378-1083 / Lee@toprank.com

Gardy Lopez: 787-246-3668 / GLopez@toprank.com  

Ricardo Jimenez/Valdez & Ramirez:  909-615-3436 / ricardoej@aol.com 

Fred Sternburg: 303-548-0707 / TooFred@aol.com

Ed Keenan:  609-399-1330 / Keenan@emcevents.com

 

HBO

Kevin Flaherty:  212-512-5052 / kevin.flaherty@hbo.com         

Patrick Byrne: 212-512-1361 / patrick.byrne@hbo.com  

 

MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL

Scott Ghertner:  702-692-6750 / sghertner@mgmresorts.com

 

MEDIA CREDENTIALS

www.MagnaMedia.com

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Tue, 31 May 2016 13:53:27 -0500
'El Diamante' Verdejo y 'Pitufo' Díaz sienten el cariño de la fanaticada boricua en el Bronx http://www.toprank.com/news/el-diamante-verdejo-y-pitufo-diaz-sienten-el-carino-de-la-fanaticada-boricua-en-el-bronx/

FOTOS: Verdejo & Diaz en el Festival Cultural de la Calle 152
 
BRONX, NY - Los invictos contendientes puertorriqueños Félix 'El Diamante' Verdejo y Christopher 'Pitufo' Díaz recibieron grandes muestras de cariño y apoyo por parte de la fanaticada de 'La Gran Manzana' durante el Festival Cultural de la Calle 152.
 
Durante la actividad Verdejo y Díaz realizaron entrevistas con los medios locales, posaron para cientos de fotos, firmaron más de un centenar de autógrafos, se dirigieron a los presentes desde la tarima principal del evento y realizaron un entrenamiento leve para el deleite de sus fieles.
 
“Una vez más siento el apoyo y el cariño de los boricuas aquí en Nueva York. Estoy bien agradecido por ese cariño que los fans de Nueva York siempre me han dado incondicionalmente,” dijo Verdejo, quien aseguró estar más enfocado que nunca para su combate del 11 de junio en 'El Teatro' del Madison Square Garden.
Por su parte, Díaz, quien participó del festival por primera vez, dijo: "esta es una experiencia bien bonita. Se siente súper bien que la gente venga a saludarnos y a apoyarnos. Eso nos motiva y nos ayuda a enfocarnos para darle una buen espectáculo a los fans de Nueva York el 11 de junio."
 
Verdejo (21-0, 14 KOs), de San Juan, Puerto Rico, estará defendiendo su título latino peso ligero de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB) ante el mexicano Juan José Martínez (25-2, 17 KO's).
En el evento estelar de la función, el ucraniano Vasyl Lomachenko (11-1, 3 KOs) estará subiendo de división para retar al boricua Román 'Rocky' Martínez (29-2-3, 17 KOs), por su título Junior Ligero de la OMB.
Los combates Martínez vs. Lomachenko y Verdejo vs. Martínez serán televisados en vivo por HBO®, comenzando a las 10:00 p.m. ET/PT. 
 
En una promoción de Top Rank®, en asociación con Puerto Rico Best Boxing y Diamante Promotions, SECA y Madison Square Garden, boletos restantes para la doble tanda estelar Martínez vs. Lomachenko / Verdejo vs. Martínez a precios de: $300, $200, $100, $50 y $35, pueden ser adquiridos en la boletería del Madison Square Garden, todos los puntos de venta Ticketmaster, cargando por teléfono llamando a Ticketmaster al 866-858-0008, y en los sitios web: www.TicketMaster.com y www.TheGarden.com.
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Sat, 28 May 2016 21:22:46 -0500
Beltran Aiming for World Title Shot http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-beltran-aiming-for-world-title-shot/ LAREDO, TX – Veteran Mexican brawler Ray Beltran wants to return to the world title picture in the lightweight division, but to reach that treasured opportunity of fighting for a world championship, he will first have to battle against Ivan ‘Bam Bam’ Najera this Saturday, May 21 at the Laredo Energy Arena.

Beltran (29-7, 17 KO’s), from Los Mochis, Sinaloa, will take on Najera (16-2 8 KO’s), from San Antonio, Texas, in a eight round lightweight battle that will be the main event of the ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ card that will be broadcasted from coast to coast in the United States this Saturday at 11 p.m. ET/PT on UniMas.
 
"I am very excited for this Saturday. After a very long year I will again have an opportunity to do what I love and for this opportunity I am so grateful,” said Beltran, who is coming from a one-year inactivity period. “Life is full of ups and downs, successes, failures, victories, defeats and Lord knows mistakes. This past year has given me much time to reflect.  I have reflected on my life and my career, my triumphs and my mistakes, for which I make no excuses.”
 
The veteran fighter assures that he has learned from his mistakes, and now he is seeking a dominant victory that will catapult him into an opportunity to fight for a world title.  
 
“I will not be overlooking my opponent Saturday, Najera is tough fighter and we know he will be bringing his A game.  However, I want it to be known that I am completely dedicated and focused on becoming a world champion. I am ready to take anyone in this division,” added Beltran.
 
In the co-feature and in the bout that will open the UniMas telecast, unbeaten Mexican prospect Álex ‘El Cholo’ Saucedo (21-0, 14 KO’s) from Chihuahua, México, will face Brazil’s Claudinoei Lacerda (17-14-1, 12 KO’s) in a eight round rumble in the super lightweight division.
 
Also on the card, undefeated Houston prospect Arturo Marquez (1-0, 1 KO) – Son of Raul ‘El Diamante’ Marquez – will make his debut under the Top Rank banner when he fights against Jesus Rodriguez (0-1, 0 KO’s) in a four round welterweight battle.
 
Presented by Top Rank, remaining tickets for ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’, priced at: $55 (Ringside), $20 (Lower Bowl) y $10 (Upper Bowl) can be purchased at the Laredo Energy Arena box office, on the website www.TicketMaster.com, on select Ticket Master outlets or by calling Ticket Master at: (800) 745-3000. VIP tables are available by calling: 956-791-9192.
 
Join the conversation on social media by using the hashtag #SoloBoxeo. For more information about this card, visit: www.TopRank.com and follow us on Facebook (www.Facebook.com/trboxeo / www.Facebook.com/trboxing), Twitter: (www.Twitter.com/trboxeo / www.Twitter.com/trboxing) and Instagram (www.Instagram.com/trboxing)
 

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Thu, 19 May 2016 16:03:53 -0500
Enfocado Ray Beltrán en coronarse como campeón mundial http://www.toprank.com/news/enfocado-ray-beltran-en-coronarse-como-campeon-mundial/

 
LAREDO, TX – El veterano púgil azteca Ray Beltrán quiere volver a ser protagonista en la división de peso ligero para poder tener la oportunidad de disputar un campeonato del mundo, pero para llegar a ese sitial tendrá que antes despachar al mexicoamericano Iván ‘Bam Bam Najera’ cuando ambos se enfrentenESTE SÁBADO 21 de mayo en la Laredo Energy Arena.
 
Beltrán (29-7, 17 KO’s), de Los Mochis, Sinaloa, enfrentará a Nájera (16-2 8 KO’s), de San Antonio, Texas, en un combate a ocho asaltos en el peso ligero que será el evento estelar de la función ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ que se televisará de costa a costa en los Estados Unidos a las 11 p.m. ET/PT por la cadena UniMás.
 
“Estoy muy emocionado por la pelea este sábado. Después de un largo año tendré la oportunidad de hacer lo que amo y estoy agradecido,” dijo Beltrán, quién viene de un periodo de inactividad de un año. “La vida está llena de altas y bajas, éxitos, fracasos, victorias, derrotas y errores. Este último año he tenido mucho tiempo para pensar. He reflexionado sobre mi vida, mi carrera, mis triunfos y mis errores, por los cuales no tengo excusa.”
 
El veterano peleador asegura haber aprendido de sus errores del pasado y ahora anda en busca de una victoria que lo posicione nuevamente para disputar un título mundial.
 
“No voy a subestimar a mi oponente de este sábado. Najera es un peleador duro y sabemos que traerá lo mejor. Sin embargo, quiero que sepa que estoy completamente dedicado y enfocado en convertirme en campeón mundial. Estoy listo para enfrentar a cualquiera en esta división,” aseguró Beltrán.
 
En el combate co-estelar de la cartelera y el que abrirá la transmisión de la cadena UniMás, el invicto prospecto mexicano Álex ‘El Cholo’ Saucedo (21-0, 14 KO’s) de Chihuahua, México, se medirá ante el brasileño Claudinoei Lacerda (17-14-1, 12 KO’s) en un combate a ocho asaltos en el peso superligero.
 
Además, el invicto prospecto de Houston, Arturo Márquez (1-0, 1 KO) – hijo de Raúl ‘El Diamante’ Márquez -- debutará bajo el banderín de Top Rank cuando choque ante Jesús Rodríguez (0-1, 0 KO’s) en una reyerta a cuatro episodios en el peso welter.
 
En una promoción de Top Rank, boletos restantes para el cartel ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ a precios de $55 (Ringside), $20 (Planta Baja) y $10 (Planta Alta) pueden ser adquiridos en la boletería de la Laredo Energy Arena, en el sitio webwww.TicketMaster.com, en selectos puntos de venta de Ticket Master o llamando a Ticket Master al (800) 745-3000. Mesas VIP están disponibles al llamar al 956-791-9192.
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Thu, 19 May 2016 15:36:12 -0500
Saúl ‘Neno’ Rodríguez tiene un importante compromiso este sábado en ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ http://www.toprank.com/news/saul-neno-rodriguez-tiene-un-importante-compromiso-este-sabado-en-solo-boxeo-tecate/

 

LOS ÁNGELES, CA – El invicto prospecto mexicoamericano Sául ‘Neno’ Rodríguez buscará continuar su paso firme rumbo a una posible oportunidad de disputar un título mundial en la función que se celebrará MAÑANA sábado, 14 de mayo en el Sportsmen’s Lodge de Studio City.

Rodríguez (19-0-1, 14 KO’s) de padres mexicanos, pero nacido en Riverside, California, enfrentará al experimentado peleador colombiano Deulis Prescott (30-3, 23 KO’s) -- un ex retador a título mundial -- en un combate a diez asaltos en la división de peso ligero que será el evento estelar del programa ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ que se  televisará en los Estados Unidos, MAÑANA sábado a las 11 p.m. ET/PT por UniMás.

“Esta es una pelea muy importante para mi. Necesito continuar con mi record invicto y también debo lucir impresionante mientras lo hago,” dijo Rodríguez, quien reconoce que su oponente no será presa fácil. “Mi oponente es uno difícil y tiene mucha experiencia,” añadió el peleador que es entrenado por Robert García.

El que apodan ‘Neno’ ha ganado ocho de sus últimos diez combates por la vía del cloroformo y viene de conseguir una impresionante victoria por nocaut en el segundo asalto ante Iván ‘Bam Bam’ Najera el pasado mes de noviembre en Las Vegas.

Además, el invicto contendiente peso pesado Andy ‘Destroyer’ Ruiz (26-0, 17 KO’s) de Mexicali, California, chocará ante Ray Austin (29-6-4, 18 KO’s) en un combate a ocho asaltos en el cual estará en juego el título de la Federación Norteamericana de Boxeo (NABF, por sus siglas en inglés).

Los invictos prospectos: Esquiva Falcao (13-0, 10 KO’s), Toka Khan Clary (18-0, 12 KO’s), Arnold Barboza Jr. (11-0, 4 KO’s) y Maxim Dadashev (1-0 , 1 KO’s) también estarán en acción en la cartelera. Este será el debut de Dadashev -- un destacado peleador aficionado ruso -- bajo el banderín de Top Rank.

En una promoción de Top Rank en asociación con Bash Boxing, boletos restantes para el cartel ‘Solo Boxeo Tecate’ pueden ser adquiridos en el sitio web www.ValleyFightNight.com o llamando al (626) 388-8888.

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Fri, 13 May 2016 10:52:03 -0500
Crawford-Postol Features 2 of Boxing's Best http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-crawford-postol-crawford-postol-features-2-of-boxings-best/ LAS VEGAS, NV. (May 10, 2016) -- Undefeated junior welterweight champions TERENCE "Bud" CRAWFORD and "The Iceman" VIKTOR POSTOL will go mano a mano, in a 12-round world title unification fight, to determine the lineal king of the exciting 140-pound division.  The Crawford vs. Postol world championship event will take place on Saturday, July 23, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.  It will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT. 

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Tecate and the motion picture "Hands of Stone," tickets to Crawford vs. Postol, priced at $304, $204, $104, and $54, not including applicable service fees,  go on sale Today! Tuesday, May 10, at 4:00 p.m. ET / 1:00 p.m. PT.  To charge by phone with a major credit card, call 1-888-9-AXS-TIX.  Tickets will also be available for purchase at mgmgrand.com or axs.com.   

"This is a great opportunity to show the world I'm the best champion at 140," said Crawford.

"We are about to show the world that I am indeed a better trainer than Postal's trainer Freddie Roach," added Brian McIntyre, Crawford's trainer and co-manager.

"I believe this is a GREAT fight and Terence will prove he's not only the best 140-pound fighter in the world but that he is pound for pound the best fighter in the world," said Cameron Dunkin, Crawford's co-manager.

"I have been waiting for this fight for a long time and I want to thank my promoters Elite Boxing and Top Rank for making this fight a reality for the fans," said Postol.

"This has Fight of the Year written all over it," said Hall of Fame Trainer World-Famous Freddie Roach.  "For the second consecutive time Viktor will be involved in a world title tilt pitting the two best fighters in the division.  He'll be ready."     

"This is one of those fights where no one knows who will come out victorious," said Vadim Kornilov, Postol's manager. "It's the type of fight fans crave but rarely get to see.  There are no opponents in this battle, only champions.  Postol and Crawford each have  28-0 records and they have both fought great opposition."

"This title unification battle between Terence Crawford and Viktor Postol is evenly matched and both undefeated champions are determined to prevail.  This is must-see television," said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum

“We look forward to hosting what very well could be the ‘fight of the year’ this summer at MGM Grand,” said Richard Sturm, president of entertainment and sports for MGM Resorts International.  “These two fighters will make their Grand Garden Arena debut and undoubtedly provide an exciting evening for boxing fans worldwide.”

“We are excited to present two accomplished champions in a major unification title showdown at 140 pounds” said Peter Nelson, Executive Vice President, HBO Sports. “Terence Crawford stands today among boxing's elite attractions. His opponent Viktor Postol, Crawford's toughest to date, seeks to seize that star power for himself with an upset under the bright spotlight in Las Vegas."

Crawford (28-0, 20 KOs), of Omaha, Neb., a two-division world champion who has won four of his last five bouts by stoppage, will be making his MGM Grand Garden debut in his third title defense as World Boxing Organization (WBO) junior welterweight world champion.  The consensus Top-10 pound-for-pound fighter will be looking to build on his star-making 2014 which featured three world championship victories as well as Fighter of the Year honors from the Boxing Writers Association of America and major media alike.  Crawford, 28, captured the vacant WBO junior welterweight crown on April 18, 2015, via a devastating sixth-round knockout of once-beaten No. 2 world-rated contender Thomas Dulorme.  He has successfully defended the title twice -- stopping No.2 world-rated contender Dierry Jean in front of a packed house at the CenturyLink Center in Omaha on October 24, 2015, and knocking out Top-10 contender Hank Lundy in the fifth round last February 27, at a soldout Theater at Madison Square Garden.  Crawford began his career-best year on March 1, 2014, just 13 days short of the sixth anniversary of his professional debut.  He captured the WBO lightweight title, dethroning defending champion Ricky Burns on Burns’ home turf of Glasgow, Scotland. Scoring a powerful and unanimous decision, Crawford put the boxing world on notice with his virtuoso performance as he pulled out all stops in dismantling Burns, rocking the defending champion throughout the fight, while switching back and forth between orthodox and southpaw stances.  He followed that with a dramatic and critically-acclaimed knockout victory of undefeated former world champion and Cuban Olympic gold medalist Yuriorkis Gamboa on June 28, 2014, in a Fight of the Year nominee.  It was one of the most-watched fights of the year with over 1.2 million viewers catching the live, first-time airing of the fight, according to Nielsen Media Research.  He concluded 2014 on November 29 with a thorough shellacking of one-time world title challenger and No. 1 contender Ray Beltran, winning 11 of the 12 rounds.   Crawford, who is friendly with Warren Buffet, is only the second Nebraska native to be recognized as a boxing world champion.  Perry “Kid” Graves, from Rock Bluff, captured the welterweight crown, knocking out Johnny Alberts in Brooklyn, in 1914, according to the Omaha World-Herald.

Postol (28-0, 12 KOs), from Kiev, Ukraine, put his stamp on the boxing landscape when he scored a 10th-round knockout of the heavily-favored former interim world champion Lucas Matthysse to capture the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) super lightweight world title on October 3, 2015.  World-rated No. 1 and No. 2, respectively, Postol and Matthysse went toe to toe throwing every weapon in the arsenals at each other until Postol caught  Matthysse with a right uppercut and a left hook effectively turning out the lights on one of boxing's most fearsome punchers.  A former sparring partner of eight-division world champion Manny Pacquiao, Postol's resume includes victories over top-rated contenders Selcuk Aydin, Jose Lopez, Lundy, and former world champion DeMarcus Corley.  Postol, who has been trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach for his last three fights, with two of those ending in knockouts, will be making his first defense as the WBC super lightweight champion. 

For fight updates go to www.toprank.com, or www.hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/trboxingfacebook.com/trboxeo or facebook.com/hboboxing, and on Twitter at twitter.com/trboxing, twitter.com/trboxeo, or twitter.com/hboboxing.  Use the Hashtag #CrawfordPostol to join the conversation on Twitter. 

#          #          # 

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Media):

 

TOP RANK

Lee Samuels:  702-378-1083 / Lee@toprank.com

Gardy Lopez: 787-246-3668 / GLopez@toprank.com  

Fred Sternburg: 303-548-0707 / TooFred@aol.com

Ed Keenan:  609-399-1330 / Keenan@emcevents.com

 

HBO

Kevin Flaherty:  212-512-5052 / kevin.flaherty@hbo.com         

Patrick Byrne: 212-512-1361 / patrick.byrne@hbo.com  

 

MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL

Scott Ghertner:  702-692-6750 / sghertner@mgmresorts.com

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Wed, 11 May 2016 13:42:21 -0500
Postol Vows to Put His Stamp on the Jr. Welterweight Division with Win Over Crawford http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-postol-vows-to-put-his-stamp-on-the-jr-welterweight-division-with-win-over-crawford/ LOS ANGELES (May 10, 2016) --  A picture may be worth a thousand words but a stamp is Forever.  Just ask World Boxing Council (WBC) super lightweight world champion "The Iceman" VIKTOR POSTOL who presented a larger than life commemorative "stamp" of himself to his opponent World Boxing Organization (WBO)  junior welterweight world titlist TERENCE "Bud" CRAWFORD at today's Beverly Hills press conference (photo attached).  The undefeated world champions announced their 12-round world title unification fight to determine the lineal king of the exciting 140-pound division.  

The stamp not only featured Postol's image but also foreshadowed  the result of their upcoming fight, with a caption that included Postol's record after their rumble, complete with projected record and unified titles.

"Neither snow nor rain nor heat nor gloom of night nor Terence Crawford stays this Postol courier from the swift completion of unifying the titles," said World-Famous Freddie Roach, Postol's Hall of Fame trainer.  "Come July 23, Postol will deliver just like he did against Lucas Matthyse.".

After viewing the artwork, a bemused Crawford told Team Postol, "There's only one place for junk mail and that's the shredder.  I'm going to cancel your stamp and your reign as WBC champion on July 23.  The new face of boxing isn't on that stamp, it's in front of you."    

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association withTecate and  the motion picture "Hands of Stone,"  the Crawford vs. Postol world championship event will take place on Saturday, July 23, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.  It will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View® beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.  Tickets, priced at $304, $204, $104, and $54, not including applicable service fees, went on sale today.  To charge by phone with a major credit card, call 1-888-9-AXS-TIX.  Tickets are also available for purchase at mgmgrand.com or axs.com.   

Crawford (28-0, 20 KOs), of Omaha, Neb., already a two-division world champion, has won four of his last five bouts by stoppage.  The consensus Top-10 pound-for-pound fighter will be making his MGM Grand Garden debut in his third title defense of his WBO junior welterweight world championship crown. 

Postol (28-0, 12 KOs), from Kiev, Ukraine, put his stamp on the boxing landscape when he scored a 10th-round knockout of the heavily-favored former world champion Lucas Matthysse to capture the vacant  WBC super lightweight world title on October 3, 2015.  Having won two of his last three fights by knockout, the Freddie Roach-trained Postol will be making his first defense of that title. 

For fight updates go to www.toprank.com, or www.hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/trboxingfacebook.com/trboxeo or facebook.com/hboboxing, and on Twitter at twitter.com/trboxing, twitter.com/trboxeo, or twitter.com/hboboxing.  Use the Hashtag #CrawfordPostol to join the conversation on Twitter. 

#          #          #

 

FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Media):

 

TOP RANK

Lee Samuels:  702-378-1083 / Lee@toprank.com

Gardy Lopez: 787-246-3668 / GLopez@toprank.com  

Fred Sternburg: 303-548-0707 / TooFred@aol.com

Ed Keenan:  609-399-1330 / Keenan@emcevents.com

 

HBO

Kevin Flaherty:  212-512-5052 / kevin.flaherty@hbo.com         

Patrick Byrne: 212-512-1361 / patrick.byrne@hbo.com  

 

MGM RESORTS INTERNATIONAL

Scott Ghertner:  702-692-6750 / sghertner@mgmresorts.com

 

CREDENTIALS:

www.MagnaMedia.com

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Wed, 11 May 2016 13:42:06 -0500
Terence Crawford y Viktor Postol chocarán el 23 de julio en combate unificatorio en Las Vegas http://www.toprank.com/news/terence-crawford-y-viktor-postol-chocaran-el-23-de-julio-en-combate-unificatorio-en-las-vegas/

FOTOS: Conferencia de Prensa Crawford vs. Postol

LAS VEGAS, NV. (10 de mayo del 2016) – Los invictos campeones de peso junior welter TERENCE "Bud" CRAWFORD y "The Iceman" VIKTOR POSTOL se enfrentarán mano a mano, en una pelea unificatoria a doce asaltos, para determinar el campeón lineal de la emocionante división de las 140 libras. El evento de camponato mundial Crawford vs. Postol se celebrará el sábado, 23 de julio, en el MGM Grand Garden Arena en Las Vegas, Nev. Será producido y distribuido en vivo por HBO Pay-Per-View comenzando a las 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT. 

Crawford (28-0, 20 KOs), de Omaha, Nebraska, es un dos-veces campeón divisional que ha ganado cuatro de sus últimas cinco peleas por nocuat, realizará su debut en el MGM Grand Garden Arena en su terecera defensa titular como campeón Junior Welter de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB).

“Esta es una gran oportunidad para demostrarle al mundo que  soy el mejor en las 140,” dijo Crawford. “Le vamos a demostrar al mundo que yo soy un mejor entrenador que el entrenador de Postol, Freddie Roach,” añadió Brian McIntyre, entrenador y co-manejador de Crawford.

“Creo que está es una gran pelea y Terence probará que no sólo es el mejor 140-libras en el mundo, sino que también probará que él es el mejor peleador libra por libra en el mundo,” dijo Cameron Dunkin, co-manejador de Crawford.

Postol (28-0, 12 KOs), de Kiev, Ucrania, impresionó al mundo del boxeo al lograr una impresionante victoria por nocaut ante el gran favorito Lucha Matthysse, para capturar el vacante título superligero del Consejo Mundial de Boxeo (CMB). Postol, quién es entrenado por Freddie Roach, estará realizando ante Crawford la primera defensa de su título.

“He estado esperando por esta pelea por mucho tiempo y quiero agradecer a mis promotores Elite Boxing y Top Rank por hacer esta pelea una realidad para los fans,” dijo Postol.

“Esta podría ser la ‘Pelea del Año’,” dijo el legendario entrenador Freddie Roach. “Por segunda vez consecutiva Viktor estará envuelto en una pelea de título mundial entre los dos mejores peleadores en la división. Él estará listo.”

“Esta es una de esas peleas que nadie sabe quien saldrá victorioso,” dijo Vadim Kornilov, manejador de Postol. “Esta es el tipo de peleas que los fans quieren, pero que raramente pueden ver. No hay oponentes en esta batalla, sólo campeones. Postol y Crawford tienen cada uno record de 28-0 y ambos han enfrentado gran oposición.”

“Esta batalla de unificación de título mundial entre terence Crawford y Viktor Postol está bastante pareja y ambos invictos campeones están determinados en prevalecer. Esta es una pelea que no se pueden perder,” dijo el legendario promotor Bob Arum.

“Estamos entusiasmados de recibir este verano en el MGM Grand la que podría ser la ‘Pelea del Año’,” dijo Richard Sturm, presidente de entretenimiento y deportes de MGM Resorts International. “Estos dos peleadores harán su debut en el Grand Garden Arena y sin duda proveerán una emocionante noche de boxeo para los fans alrededor del mundo.”         

“Estamos muy contentos de presentar a dos campeones en un gran choque unificatorio en las 140 libras,” dijo Peter Nelson, Vicepresidente Ejecutivo de HBO Sports. “Terence Crawford es hoy una de las atracciones elite del boxeo. Su oponente Viktor Postol, el más difícil para Crawford hasta el momento, buscará convertirse en una estrella con una sorpresa bajo las luces brillantes de Las Vegas.”

En una promoción de Top Rank®, en asociación con “Hands of Stone’, taquillas para Crawford vs. Postol, ya están a la venta a precios de: $304, $204, $104 y $54, sin incluir los cargos aplicables. Para cargar por teléfono con tarjeta de crédito, llama a Ticketmaster al (800) 745-3000. Los boletos también estarán disponibles para compra en mgmgrand.com o ticketmaster.com.  

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Tue, 10 May 2016 18:29:44 -0500
Championship Fights Hit Puerto Rican Day Parade Weekend http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-championship-fights-hit-puerto-rican-day-parade-weekend/ NEW YORK (April 28, 2016) -- You better believe Saturday night's alright for fighting, especially in New York on Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend! 

Three-time world champion ROMAN "Rocky" MARTINEZ and World Boxing Organization (WBO) featherweight world champion VASYL LOMACHENKO will go mano a mano for Martinez's WBO junior lightweight world title and the boxing gem of Puerto Rico, FELIX "El Diamante" VERDEJO, will risk his WBO Latino lightweight crown, undefeated record and No. 2 world rating against JUAN JOSE MARTINEZ in the co-main event of a championship doubleheader Saturday, June 11 -- one day before the famed Puerto Rican Day Parade -- at The Theater at Madison Square Garden.  The two bouts, scheduled for 12 and 10 rounds, respectively, will be televised live on HBO beginning at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.   The non-televised undercard will feature the U.S. debut of two-time Olympic gold medalist and three-time World Amateur Champion ZOU SHIMING from The Peoples Republic of China in a 10-round flyweight bout. 

The five gladiators boast a combined record of 87-6-3 (53 KOs) -- a winning percentage of 91% with over 60% of their victories coming by way of knockout.

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with Puerto Rican Best Boxing, Diamante Promotions, SECA and Madison Square Garden, tickets to the Martinez vs. Lomachenko / Verdejo vs. Martinez championship doubleheader will go on sale Today!  Thursday, April 28, at Noon ET.  Priced at $300, $200, $100, $50 and $35, tickets can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008), and online at www.ticketmaster.com and www.thegarden.com.  

"I feel very happy returning to New York to fight, and even more on a special date like the Puerto Rican Day Parade.  I know that a lot of Puerto Ricans will be there and I'll be ready, as always, to give it my all," said Martinez.  "About Lomachenko I can say that he is a boxer with a lot of accomplishments as an amateur and even though he became champion in just a few professional fights, it isn't the same in amateur as in professional boxing and we are working hard to take the victory on June 11."

"Thank you to Top Rank!   Thank you to my manager, Egis Klimas!.  And thank you to HBO for believing that I can headline its telecast in the main event of the evening," said Lomachenko.  "It is a big opportunity for me.  It is a chance to set a new record by becoming  a two-division world champion in the shortest period -- my seventh professional fight -- a record that currently stands at eight fights.  On June 11, at Madison Square Garden, I'm going to do my best to reach a new career pinnacle."

"I would like to thank our promoter Top Rank for making this fight against Rocky Martinez a reality," said Egis Klimas, Lomachenko's manager.  "We are also very thankful to HBO for approving this fight as its main event of their telecast.  And a big thanks to the WBO for sanctioning this battle between two great champions.. For our team it is a big honor to be headlining at Madison Square Garden on June 11th and putting on a good show for the fans.  I have no doubts that Vasyl will be in great shape for his debut in the 130-pound weight class."

"I'm more motivated than ever for this fight on HBO and performing in front of my people in New York,” said Verdejo.  “I recognize that my focus for my last couple of fights hasn't been at its best. I feel that my last performances haven't been close to what has been expected of me and that has motivated me to show my supporters that the Felix Verdejo they have been rooting for will be at The Garden on June 11 and for a very long time after."

"This is the first time in boxing history which two fighters on this card each won two Olympic gold medals," said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. "Vasyl Lomachenko and Zou Shiming accomplished iconic feats in the sport of boxing and Felix Verdejo himself is a former Olympian and one of the top amateur boxers."

"On Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend in New York, Rocky Martinez fights to defend his 130-lb crown and his heritage, while Vasyl Lomachenko moves up in weight campaigning for a second world title in a continued quest to have his professional career mirror the glory of his unrivaled amateur virtuosity," says Peter Nelson, Executive Vice President, HBO Sports. "The high stakes are well deserving of one of boxing's most elite stages: Theater at Madison Square Garden."

Martinez (29-2-3, 17 KOs), from Vega Baja, Puerto Rico, is a three-time WBO junior lightweight world champion.  He won his first world title on March 14, 2009, knocking out defending champion Nicky Cook in the fourth round in Manchester, England.  He successfully defended that title twice during his 19-month reign, knocking out Feider Viloria and Gonzalo Munguia before losing a 12-round decision to Ricky Burns on September 4, 2010.  Martinez's second reign as world champion began on September 15, 2012, winning the vacant title via a split decision over top contender Miguel Beltran, Jr.  Martinez successfully defended his title twice during his 15-month reign, scoring a split decision victory over Diego Magdaleno and a draw against Juan Carlos Burgos before being dethroned by undefeated former WBO featherweight champion Mikey Garcia on November 9, 2013.  Martinez's current world title reign began on April 11, 2015 when he defeated defending champion Orlando Salido via a 12-round decision.  In their rematch, on September 12, Martinez retained his title by virtue of a draw.  Both fights were worthy of Fights of the Year consideration.

The greatest amateur boxer of his era and arguably of all time, two-time Ukrainian Olympic gold medalist Lomachenko (5-1, 3 KOs), of Odessa, captured the vacant WBO featherweight title on June 21, 2014, winning a scintillating majority decision over the previously unbeaten Gary Russell Jr.  It was Lomachenko's third professional bout, tying him with Thailand's Saensak Muangsurin for fewest fights to win a world title.  Muangsurin won a junior welterweight title in 1975, also in his third professional fight.  Russell, a former U.S. Olympian and current World Boxing Council (WBC) featherweight world champion, was totally blitzed by Lomachenko, battered around the ring throughout the fight.  From the outset of his professional career, Lomachenko made it known that he was ready for the best in his division.  He made his professional debut in 2013 knocking out the WBO's No. 7-rated featherweight contender Jose Luis Ramirez (24-2-2, 15 KOs) in the fourth round of a bout that was scheduled for 10.  Less than five months later, on March 1, 2014, in his second professional bout, he challenged WBO featherweight champion Orlando Salido, losing a split decision to the heavier defending champion whose title had been stripped because he could not make the weight limit.  Since winning the world title, Lomachenko has successfully defended it three times, winning a 12-round unanimous decision on November 23, 2014, against No. 1 contender Chonlatarn Piriyapinyo (51-1, 33 KOs), a ninth-round knockout of Gamalier Rodriguez (25-2-3, 17 KOs) on the undercard of the May 2, 2015 Floyd Mayweather - Manny Pacquiao extravaganza and a 10th-round knockout of Top-10 contender Romulo Koasicha (24-4, 14 KOs), on the undercard of the November 7, 2015 Timothy Bradley - Brandon Rios world welterweight championship .  Lomachenko first gained international renown by winning gold medals in the 2008 Beijing Olympics and the 2012 London Games as a featherweight and a lightweight, respectively. 

Verdejo (21-0, 14 KOs), from San Juan, Puerto Rico, who earned "Prospect of the Year" honors in 2014 and 2015, began this year as a bona fide world title contender.  He returns to the ring having won eight of his last 12 fights inside the distance, including his first and last fights of 2015 -- a fifth-round knockout of Marco Lopez, on April 25, for the vacant WBO Latino lightweight title and a second-round pasting of Josenilson Dos Santos on December 11, which was Verdejo's second defense of the title.  In between those two fights, Verdejo successfully defended his title on June 13 at Madison Square Garden during Puerto Rican Day Parade weekend, winning a 10-round unanimous decision over previously undefeated contender Ivan Najera of San Antonio, TX.  This year he has scored dominant 10-round unanimous decision victories over William Silva on February 27 at The Garden and Jose Rodriguez on April 16 in San Juan.  Already world-rated No. 2 by the WBO and the World Boxing Association (WBA), and No. 6 by the International Boxing Federation (IBF), Verdejo, 22, continues to develop into a major gate attraction, producing standing room only crowds every time he fights.  A former amateur standout who represented Puerto Rico in the 2012 Olympics, Verdejo has been mentored by Puerto Rican boxing icon and Hall of Fame inductee Felix Trinidad.

Martinez (25-2, 17 KOs), of Mexico City, Mexico, captured the ABMH (Hispanic World Boxing Association) junior lightweight title in 2014 via a 12-round unanimous decision over Carlos Jimenez.  Since moving up to the lightweight division he has gone undefeated and enters this fight riding a two-year six-bout winning streak, all at the lightweight division.     

Zou (7-1, 2 KOs), from Guizhou, China, and trained by Hall of Famer Freddie Roach, returns to the ring fresh from his most impressive professional victory -- an eighth-round knockout of undefeated contender Natan Santana Coutinho on January 30, in Shanghai.  This will mark the first time the newly-minted two-time WBO International flyweight champion has ever fought outside of China.  Zou's professional career highlights include a 12-round decision loss t to International Boxing Federation (IBF) flyweight champion world champion Amnat Ruenroeng in 2015 and a 12-round unanimous decision victory over undefeated No. 3 contender Kwanpichit Onesongchaigym in a world flyweight title elimination bout.  Their fight was the co-main event to the Manny Pacquiao - Chris Algieri world welterweight championship on November 22, 2014 at Cotai Arena.  Zou scored three knockdowns en route to a 119-106, 119-106 and 120-103 victory over his vastly more experienced opponent.  He showed his mettle by fighting through numerous head butts that swelled his left eye shut as well as weathering numerous low blows.  But Zou kept his composure throughout the fight showing the world he was ready for a world title shot.  Zou captured his first WBO International flyweight title on July 19, 2014, stepping up to his first 10-round fight and winning a unanimous decision over Top-10 contender Luis De La Rosa, proving to the world that he had developed into a world title contender.  Zou is currently world-rated No. 3 by the WBO and No. 5 by the IBF.  One of the most popular Olympic athletes in China, Zou was the world's greatest amateur light flyweight, capturing gold medals in the World Amateur Championships in 2005, 2007 and 2011, along with gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games. He also owns an Olympic bronze medal from the 2004 games, making him his nation's first Olympic medallist in boxing as well as its first boxing gold medallist in the World Amateur Championships and the Olympics.

For fight updates go to www.toprank.com, or www.hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/trboxingfacebook.com/trboxeo or facebook.com/hboboxing, and on Twitter at twitter.com/trboxing, twitter.com/trboxeo, or twitter.com/hboboxing.

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FOR ADDITIONAL INFORMATION (Media):

 

TOP RANK

Lee Samuels:  702-378-1083 / Lee@toprank.com

Gardy Lopez (Verdejo): 787-246-3668 / GLopez@toprank.com  

Fred Sternburg: 303-548-0707 / TooFred@aol.com

Ed Keenan:  609-399-1330 / Keenan@emcevents.com

  

HBO

Kevin Flaherty:  212-512-5052 / kevin.flaherty@hbo.com         

Patrick Byrne: 212-512-1361 / patrick.byrne@hbo.com  

 

MADISON SQUARE GARDEN

Larry Torres:  212-631-5178 / Larry.Torres@msg.com   

 

MEDIA CREDENTIALS

www.toprank.com/credentials

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Wed, 27 Apr 2016 15:23:49 -0500
El invicto prospecto ruso Maxim Dadashev firmó con Top Rank http://www.toprank.com/news/el-invicto-prospecto-ruso-maxim-dadashev-firmo-con-top-rank/ LAS VEGAS – ¡Ahí vienen los rusos! El invicto prospecto ruso Maxim Dadashev es la última adición a la invasión de peleadores europeos en el establo de Top Rank. El destacado peleador amateur de San Petersburgo firmó un contrato promocional multianual con Top Rank®, la compañía liderada por el legendario promotor, Bob Arum.

Dadashev es un peleador Junior Welter de 26 años de edad con un record profesional de 1-0 y  1 nocaut, que compitió en sobre 250 peleas amateur y ganó  múltiples torneos nacionales en Rusia.

“Maxim es un peleador extremadamente capas que se puede ajustar a cualquier estilo. Su experiencia como amateur y ética de trabajo, junto con el equipo a su alrededor lo llevará muy lejos,” dijo Carl Moretii, Vicepresidente de Top Rank.

Dadashev es un compañero de escuadra del campeón peso pluma de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB) Vasyl Lomachenko – ambos son manejados por Egis Klimas.

“Estoy muy contento de representar y traer un boxeador de clase alta a Top Rank. Maxim es de San Petersburgo, Rusia, donde ganó muchos torneos aficionados al boxear en sobre 250 peleas. Estamos emocionados por el futuro brillante que tendrá con Top Rank," comentó Klimas.

“Maxi es entrenado por Robert García, el “Entrenador del Año 2012” de la Asociación de Escritores de Boxeo de América (BWAA, por sus siglas en inglés).

“Él tiene buen experiencia amateur. Él está bien enfocado y dedicado. Él sabe como usar su alcance y poder y será un oponente difícil para cualquier Junior Welter. Nuestro equipo, con Egis como manejador y Top Rank como promotor, no tengo duda de que Maxim llegará lejos en el boxeo,” añadió García.

Dadashev hará su debut bajó el banderín de Top Rank en nuestro cartel “Solo Boxeo Tecate” que se celebrará el 14 de mayo en el Sportsman’s Logde en Studio City, California.

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Fri, 22 Apr 2016 18:20:30 -0500
El ex-olímpico José Ramírez regresará a casa el 9 de julio http://www.toprank.com/news/el-ex-olimpico-jose-ramirez-regresara-a-casa-el-9-de-julio/ Fresno, California – Tras presentare ante una gran cantidad de fans en el MGM Grand Garden Arena de Las Vegas en un combate que fue televisado al mundo entero por HBO PPV, el invicto campeón continental de la Américas del Consejo Mundial de Boxeo (CMB) Jose Ramírez (17-0, 12 KO’s) ganó de manera impresionante y retuvo su título. Ramírez ahora regresará el 9 de Julio en su ciudad natal en un combate que será el evento estelar de un cartel que será televisado nacionalmente y se celebrará en el Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino y se espera un todo vendido en solo semanas.

Una victoria le daría a Ramírez una clasificación mundial. Campeones incluyendo Evander Holyfield y Roy Jones y muchas superestrellas han sido campeones Continental de las Américas del CMB.

“José Ramírez es uno de los mejores talentos jóvenes en años recientes y tiene todos los elementos para convertirse en una superestrella. El CMB está muy orgulloso de estar mano a mano con él desde el comienzo de su carrera,” dijo el presidente del CMB, Mauricio Sulaiman.

“Después de una presentación espectacular en el cartel Pacquiao vs. Bradley, el ex olímpico José Ramírez regresa al ring el sábado, 9 de julio en el Tachi Palace Hotel y Casino en Lemoore para continuar su marcha hacia una pelea de campeonato mundial. Estoy seguro que todos los fans del Valle Central continuarán apoyando a este gran atleta y la persona especial que José es. Quiero agradecer al asesor y agente de José, Rick Mirigian, por todo lo que está haciendo para hacer de este un evento especial,” dijo el legendario promotor Bob Arum de Top Rank.

“Estoy contento de regresar a casa y de defender mis correas y traer una pelea grande a donde yo vivo. Voy a tomarme una semana de descanso para compartir con la familia y regresar al gimnasio,” dijo Ramírez.

“No hay días de descanso en este deporte, estamos de vuelta a hacer grandes peleas y continuar a evolución de él a convertirse en campeón mundial,” añadió el asesor de Ramírez, Rick Mirigian.

Taquillas a precios de: $1,000 (Mesa VIP | 10 personas por mesa), $65 (Reservado) y $35 (Entrada General), más cargos aplicables, estarán a la venta el 29 de abril y podrán ser adquiridos en el Tachi Palace Hotel Gift Shop (17225 Jersey Ave. Lemoore, CA 93245), llamando 1-866-4PALACE, o visitando: www.TachiPalace.com.

Un cargo de $3 será aplicado y donado a la ciudad de AVENAL donde José Ramírez nació y fue criado para ayudar con sus problemas de agua.

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Wed, 20 Apr 2016 17:19:37 -0500
Jose Ramirez Continues the Fight for Water http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-jose-ramirez-continues-the-fight-for-water/ Fresno, California - Coming off a packed MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas on April 9th and on HBO PPV televised to the world, USA Olympian, WBC Continental Americas Champion, NABF Champion and undefeatedJose Ramirez (17-0, 12 KOs) won in dominant fashion and retained his title. Ramirez now will return July 9th in his home town where he will main event a Nationally televised fight at Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino which looks to sell out in a week. Ramirez last fought at home December 5th at the Save Mart Center drawing 13,100 and before that 10,000 in May at the Selland Arena.

A victory will give Ramirez a Top-10 world rating and further his journey to a world title. Champions including Evander Holyfield and Roy Jones and many other superstars have held the WBC Continental Americas belt.

"Jose Ramirez is one of the greatest, young talents in recent years and has all the elements of becoming a Superstar. The WBC is very proud to have been hand-in-hand with him since the beginning of his career," said WBC President, Mauricio Sulaiman

"Fresh off a spectacular performance on the Pacquiao - Bradley card, USA Olympian Jose Ramirez returns to the ring on Saturday, July 9 at the Tachi Palace Hotel and Casino in Lemoore to continue his march towards a world championship fight. I am sure all of the fans from the Central Valley will continue to support this great athlete and the special person Jose is. I want to thank Jose's advisor and agent Rick Mirigian for all he is doing to make this a very special event," said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank.

"I’m happy to come home and be able to bring a big fight to where I live and defend my belts at Tachi Palace as they have supported me since day one and it is important to me to fight there, I will take a week off to be with family and get right back to the gym" Jose Ramirez.

"No days off in this sport, we are right back to getting big fights put together, big sponsors and his evolution to becoming a world champion and dont wait to get tickets on this fight as they will be tough to get and Tachi Palace is the premier resort and casino in the central valley so make a weekend out of this huge event" agent/promoter Rick Mirigian.

Tickets priced at $1000 per table (VIP 10 people per table), $65 (Reserved) and $35 (General Entrance), plus applicable charges, go on sale April 29th, come in and purchase tickets at the Tachi Palace Hotel Gift Shop (17225 Jersey Ave. Lemoore, CA 93245), by phone at 1-866-4PALACE, or online at: www.TachiPalace.com.

A $3 Ticket fee will apply and be donated to the city of Avenal where Jose Ramirez was born and raised to help with their water issues.

 

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Tue, 19 Apr 2016 13:01:47 -0500
Listo Félix 'El Diamante' Verdejo para su combate de este sábado en Puerto Rico http://www.toprank.com/news/listo-felix-el-diamante-verdejo-para-su-combate-de-este-sabado-en-puerto-rico/
Listo Félix 'El Diamante' Verdejo para su combate de este sába...

El boricua Felix Verdejo sabe que en el boxeo no existe enemigo pequeño y por eso el joven peleador de 22 años se prepara a conciencia para cada uno de sus combates. Hoy durante un entrenamiento de medios, 'El Diamante' aseguró que eso no cambiará cuando suba al ring ESTE SÁBADO en el Coliseo Roberto Clemente de San Juan, P.R.DETALLES: http://bit.ly/1RQe4Ig #SoloBoxeo

Posted by Top Rank en Español on Monday, April 11, 2016

 

SAN JUAN, P.R. (11 de abril del 2016) - El invicto contendiente boricua Félix 'El Diamante' Verdejo sabe que en el boxeo no existe enemigo pequeño y por eso el joven peleador de 22 años se prepara a conciencia para cada uno de sus combates. Hoy durante un entrenamiento de medios, 'El Diamante' aseguró que eso no cambiará cuando suba al ring este sábado, 16 de abril, en el Coliseo Roberto Clemente de la capital borinqueña.

Verdejo (20-0, 14 KO's) defenderá por cuarta ocasión su título latino peso ligero de la Organización Mundial de Boxeo (OMB), esta vez ante el mexicano José Luis Rodríguez (17-6-1, 10 KO’s), en el evento estelar del cartel que presentará Top Rank en asociación con Diamante Promotions.

En el combate coestelar de la función, el invicto prospecto Christopher ‘Pitufo’ Díaz (15-0, 10 KO's) disputará el título juvenil peso pluma de la OMB. Pronto se estarán anunciando el rival de Díaz.

También en la cartelera estarán en acción los invictos prospectos de Top Rank: el peso junior welter Julian ‘Hammer Hands’ Rodríguez (12-0, 9 KO’s) y el recién firmado supergallo Jean Carlos ‘Chapito’ Rivera (5-0 , 3 KO’s).

Además, de la promotora Diamante Promotions estarán en acción: Jean Carlos ‘El Lobo’ Torres (4-0, 3 KO’s) y los debutantes Midyael ‘El Diamante Negro’ Sánchez y Roberto ‘El Terror de Cayey’ Cruz.

Boletos restantes para la cartelera que será presentada por Top Rank en asociación con Diamante Promotions, a precios de $150 (Red Carpet), $100 (Ring Side), $75 (Palco Centro), $40 (Palco), y $15 (General), más cargos aplicables, pueden ser adquiridos en www.TicketCenterPR.com, en todos los puntos de ventas Ticket Center o llamando al (787) 792-5000.

Utiliza el hashtag #SoloBoxeo para unirte a la conversación en las redes sociales sobre esta cartelera.

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Mon, 11 Apr 2016 21:10:46 -0500
A Grand Finale That Hit All the Right Notes http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-a-grand-finale-that-hit-all-the-right-notes/ LAS VEGAS -- MANNY PACQUIAO and TIM BRADLEY performed a symphony Saturday night.  In a sport that can be so out of tune, in a world of pro athletics that is so often off-key, these two boxers hit all the right notes.   

Even Bradley, who lost the decision, might agree.  This ending, this result, this conclusion, felt right.      

Pacquiao has said this will be his last fight.  Pressed from all angles afterward about how likely it is that he will stick to that -- especially in the aftermath of such an impressive performance -- he remained steadfast.

“I want to go home, spend time with my family and serve the people,” the Filipino superstar said.

That decision is chocked full of logic.

He is 37 years old.  This was his 66th professional fight (he is now 58-6-2).  He appears to be leaving with his faculties intact.      

He is in his second term as a Congressman from the Sarangani province of the Philippines.  In those two terms, he has done his best to serve the poor, which is what he was as a child.  He has become the Robin Hood of his country, without robbing from the rich.  He doesn’t need to.  He is among the country’s richest.      

Now, on May 9, he will see if he becomes one of the 12 elected into the Philippine Senate.  He has said, over and over, that being a senator is likely to be more time consuming, that he needs to focus on that.  But he has also said that he loves boxing, that he won’t know how it feels to “hang my gloves up.”  The mitigating circumstance of that seemed to be how Saturday night’s fight turned out.  He has said, repeatedly, that he “wanted to win convincingly.”

And so he did, knocking Bradley down twice and getting the same score from each of the three judges, 116-110.   

But a key element in that “wanting to win convincingly” was the opponent.  Had Pacquiao finished up by beating a tomato can, it would have been seen only as one last payday, as one more boxer hanging on too long. It would not have brought any sort of the grand finale he deserved, just an ending.  To top Bradley’s presence, skills and competitiveness made it a perfect ending.  

Bradley’s nickname is the Desert Storm, and the Palm Springs-area fighter kept throwing gusts at Pacquiao all night.  He was quick, he was nicely prepared by trainer Teddy Atlas, and he was probably the best welterweight on the planet, had there not also been a guy named Pacquiao here, too.

Bradley is lightning fast.  Pacquiao is warp speed.  Atlas puts it best in his description of Pacquiao.     

“He is a freakish combination of speed and power,” he has said.

This was their third fight, the rubber match, and watching this one from ringside brought newfound empathy for the three judges who, by all accounts, screwed up the decision in the first fight and gave it to Bradley.  With these two boxers, everything happens so fast that you would need three days of replays to be sure what you saw.     

My card may have been the strangest kept for the fight. I had it 113-111 for Pacquiao, despite his two 10-8 knockdown rounds, because I saw no winner in three rounds -- the first, second and the eleventh -- and scored them all 9-9.  But I have no quarrel with the 116-110 of the judges, not did anybody else ringside or, for that matter, in a crowd of 14,665 in the MGM Grand Garden.

The crowd in itself was a fascination.  As things would heat up in a given round, a huge chant would begin that seemed to be “MANNY, MANNY.”  But soon, it sort of morphed into “BRADLEY, BRADLEY.”

Winning wasn’t everything in this one.  The level of performance was.        

Ideally, Pacquiao will stay retired and become a different sort of icon in his country.  He can depart 66 pro fights with his sense and great pride of accomplishment.  That’s no small thing in this sport.    

Bradley is 32, has lost only twice now in 36 fights, and is likely to carry on a bit more.  He appeared to emerge relatively unscathed, despite the two knockdowns.  The first was in the seventh round, and was questionable in even being ruled a knockdown.  Both Atlas and Bradley said afterward they thought it had been more a push than a knockdown.

There was no question about the one in the ninth round.  Pacquiao caught Bradley with a quick left hook, Bradley was jolted on his back, but was so uninjured that he merely completed the fall with a somersault that put him back on his feet immediately.    

“He caught me good there,” Bradley said.     

Pacquiao’s trainer, Freddie Roach, was a bit more poetic, with some subtle politics tossed in.     

“Manny’s left trumps all,” Roach said.    

Bradley seemed to realize quickly after the fight that losing is only bitter when you haven’t done your best, when you’ve had a chance and not risen to the occasion.  On this night, against a Pacquiao at his best, Bradley had little chance.

“I was in there with a pretty good man,” Bradley said.       

Pacquiao said he was trying for the knockout, but that Bradley was too tough.      

“He deserved to go the distance,” Pacquiao said.        

There might be no better summary than that of what this evening was about.  When was the last time you heard one boxer talk about what the other boxer DESERVED?

Also, when was the last time you heard two boxers, minutes after trying to punch each other into oblivion, make plans to meet the next morning for breakfast?  These two did.   

This was a night that wrapped up three months of talking, speculating, promoting and wondering what would happen.  It was a night that much of the media felt would be overrated, would draw little buzz and would lay an egg.     

In fact, while it may not have been the biggest deal or the most memorable moment ever in boxing, it ended up being a high-quality, competitive fight that showcased the sweet science of the sport.  Seldom does any event get it quite as right, from all angles, as this one did.

Which, of course, is music to the ears of boxing.

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* This column was not subject to the approval of Top Rank.  Any editorial usage of all or part of this column is welcome but must include credit to Bill Dwyre.

 

Bill Dwyre will be writing a series of weekly columns on the Pacquiao vs. Bradley world championship event.  Bill was sports editor of The Los Angeles Times for 25 years, ending in 2006.  He was a sports columnist for 9 1/2 years at The Times, ending Nov. 25 with his retirement.  Boxing was among his most frequent column topics. Bill can be contacted at BillPatDwyre@gmail.com or via Twitter at @BillDwyre.

 

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with MP Promotions and Tecate, the Manny Pacquiao - Tim Bradleychampionship event took place Saturday, April 9, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It was produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®.  The exclusive replay of Pacquiao vs. Bradley will be seen Saturday, April 16 at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT on HBO®. 

 

The NoTrump pay-per-view undercard featured undefeated No. 1 contender and mandatory challengerGILBERTO "Zurdo" RAMIREZ dethroning World Boxing Organization (WBO) super middleweight world champion "King" ARTHUR ABRAHAM by unanimous decision, undefeated No. 1 WBO featherweight contender and two-time Mexican Olympian ÓSCAR VALDEZ successfully defending his NABO featherweight title by knocking out former International Boxing Federation (IBF) featherweight world champion EVGENY GRADOVICH and 2012 U.S. Olympian JOSE RAMÍREZ successfully defending his World Boxing Council (WBC) Continental Americas super lightweight title by winning a unanimous decision against MANNY PEREZ. The Abraham vs. Ramirez world championship fight was co-promoted by Sauerland Event and Zapari Boxing Promotions. 

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Sun, 10 Apr 2016 17:13:40 -0500
Extending or Finalizing a Legacy http://www.toprank.com/news/boxing-promotions-extending-or-finalizing-a-legacy/

LAS VEGAS -- Saturday night, in a familiar boxing ring at a trendy bright-lights casino here, superstarMANNY PACQUIAO will do, in 36 minutes or less, what superstar Kobe Bryant has spent an entire NBA season doing.

He will attempt to finalize a legacy.      

Both Bryant and Pacquiao can point to bodies of work beyond the remarkable.  But the farewell tours, much like the sports each represent, are vastly different.

Pacquiao is 37.  He has been boxing since he was barely a teenager.  His record is 57-6-2, which translates to 65 wars in about 25 years.  Once Oscar De La Hoya left the scene, somehow fittingly at the hands of Pacquiao in 2008, the mantle of most-popular and most-skilled boxer went to Pacquiao.  He drove billions of dollars into the sport and his native Philippines into a more frequent international conversation.     

He shared the top rung of boxing status in his generation with Floyd Mayweather Jr., who has never lost in 49 fights, who beat Pacquiao in his final one last year and who earned the reputation as the best defensive fighter and pure practitioner of the sweet science of his era.  Few threatened to beat Mayweather.  Few even hit him.

But Mayweather’s flashy lifestyle, general arrogance and braggadocio have been enough of a turn-off to the general sports fan to prompt millions to turn to Pacquiao for hero worship and inspiration.  Mayweather won the fight, but he would not win the popularity contest.

That brings us to Saturday night, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena, where Pacquiao has fought the bulk of his battles and generated the bulk of his popularity.  He has said this will be his last fight.  When boxers say this, we roll our eyes.  A boxer’s retirement is like a politician’s campaign promise.

Pacquiao’s stance in this, however, sounds firm, less naively dishonest.

“I want to win, and I want to do so convincingly,” he has said here, over and over.  “I want for this to be part of my legacy, for me, for my family, for the Philippines.”

He also has said, “I am happy with my career.  What I have done is beyond my imagination.”    

What he has done is gone from a scraggly 106-pounder -- working dozens of odd jobs, even as a 10 and 11-year-old street urchin, to scrape together food for his family --to a multi-millionaire boxing star, a 147-pound welterweight marvel, Filipino congressman and current candidate for a senate seat in his country.  At Friday’sweigh-in, he was introduced as a “global icon.” 

That pretty well covers it.  A legacy?  Who would need more?      

But this is boxing, where your reputation and public perception lasts about as long as it takes to go 12 rounds.  In Pacquiao’s case, his most-recent 12 rounds were his loss to Mayweather, one further stained by his admission afterward that he had torn a muscle in his right shoulder in the fourth round that he said rendered him ineffective the rest of the way. Mayweather got the decision and Pacquiao and his fans were left with bad tastes in their mouth.   

Then, at the beginning of this promotion, the highly religious Pacquiao made a controversial and silly statement about gays and lesbians being “worse than animals.”  But that has somehow blemished his reputation less than might be expected, partly because his home country appears less upset than the more knee-jerk, politically-correct USA.  A reporter from a major Philippine newspaper said recently that, were they to hold a poll right now in his country that asks public opinion about gay and lesbian marriage, “as much as 75%” would vote no.

Pacquiao’s legacy seems to have survived both the Mayweather loss and his unfortunate statement. Now, the question of the moment is, can it survive TIM BRADLEY?       

In a refreshing sort of way, having Bradley as the opponent is perfect for Pacquiao’s legacy grand finale. That was not the case when this fight was announced and the promotion began three months ago.

This is their third fight, and fans and media tend to yawn over boxing trilogies.  The prevailing theory was that there was no buzz, that boxing had been there and done that twice before. There was even the theory that Promoter Bob Arum of Top Rank had committed financial suicide by putting a pay-per-view match on during The Masters golf weekend, when millions of sports fans will have already spent their manageable hours watching TV by fight time.   

Lost in all this were the incredible match-up statistics that have Pacquiao as the only eight-division world champion in history --“That’ll never happen again,” says his trainer, Freddie Roach -- and Bradley as a five-time world champion.  Also lost is that Bradley, while the after-thought in this fight, is no kid at 32 and has just one loss on his record, to Pacquiao two years ago.  That’s the case, even though his victory in their first fight, in 2012, was widely panned as a judging screw-up.         

The wild card in all this is that, as the promotion has grown, so has the stature of Bradley.        

Part of it is his addition of the fascinating Teddy Atlas as his trainer.  The other part is that, with Atlas providing the thought-processes and articulate examples of free and colorful expression, Bradley has become more outgoing and media-attractive.  He has picked up a new fan following and has, in so doing, stamped himself as much more than just another guy that Manny is fighting.   

Now, a Pacquiao victory over Bradley is, indeed, a legacy builder; something you proudly tell your grandchildren, while pointing out who Tim Bradley was, what he stood for and how well he could fight.

Bradley, of course, has not come from Palm Springs, with his Desert Storm nickname and high heat punching style, to be merely a pawn in Pacquiao’s legacy night. After his weigh-in Friday, he said, “I think there will be lots of disappointed fans here Saturday night.”  That showed not only a recognition of Pacquiao’s stature compared to his own, but a swagger that goes beyond normal fight hype.     

Atlas calls Pacquiao, “One of the greatest fighters of our time,” and, “one with a freakish combination of speed and power.”

Pacquiao says, “I want to win, stay humble and be with my family.”

Bradley says, “This is my shot.  If I don’t do it Saturday, I won’t do it.”      

After a seven-month season, Kobe will play his last Lakers’ game next week and ride off into the sunset, leaving record-books and historians to tell the rest.

After 36 minutes or less Saturday night, Manny Pacquiao says he will do the same.     

Bradley is not Steph Curry, nor Chris Paul or Tony Parker.  But in this arena, in this sport, on this Saturday night, he will more than suffice.    

Legacy building should not be easy.  Pacquiao should be grateful that, this time, it will not be.

             

#          #          #

 

* This column was not subject to the approval of Top Rank.  Any editorial usage of all or part of this column is welcome but must include credit to Bill Dwyre.

 

Bill Dwyre will be writing a series of weekly columns on the Pacquiao vs. Bradley world championship event.  Bill was sports editor of The Los Angeles Times for 25 years, ending in 2006.  He was a sports columnist for 9 1/2 years at The Times, ending Nov. 25 with his retirement.  Boxing was among his most frequent column topics. Bill can be contacted at BillPatDwyre@gmail.com or via Twitter at @BillDwyre.

 

Promoted by Top Rank®, in association with MP Promotions and Tecate, the Manny Pacquiao - Tim Bradleychampionship event will take place Tonight! Saturday, April 9, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nevada.  It will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View®  beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT.  The NoTrump pay-per-view undercard will feature World Boxing Organization (WBO) super middleweight world champion "King" ARTHUR ABRAHAM defending his title against undefeated No. 1 contender and mandatory challenger GILBERTO "Zurdo" RAMIREZ, undefeated No. 1 WBO featherweight contender and two-time Mexican Olympian ÓSCAR VALDEZ defending his NABO featherweight title against former International Boxing Federation (IBF) featherweight world champion EVGENY GRADOVICH and 2012 U.S. Olympian JOSE RAMÍREZ defending his World Boxing Council (WBC) Continental Americas super lightweight title against MANNY PEREZ.  The Abraham vs. Ramirez world championship fight is co-promoted by Sauerland Event and Zapari Boxing Promotions. 

 

Remaining Tickets to Pacquiao vs. Bradley are priced at $1,204, $804, $604, $404, $254 and $154, not including applicable service fees.  To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (800) 745-3000.  Tickets are also available for purchase at mgmgrand.com or ticketmaster.com.  

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Sat, 09 Apr 2016 12:21:19 -0500