Lucas Matthysse and Jorge Linares in Double World Title Feature in Los Angeles on January 27th

  • By Behind The Gloves
  • 28 Nov, 2017
Two of the world's most exciting fighters, Lucas "La Maquina" Matthysse (38-4, 35 KOs) and Jorge "El Nino De Oro" Linares (43-3, 27 KOs), will kick off the 2018 boxing year with a bang as they compete in separate world championship bouts on Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 at the "Fabulous" Forum in Inglewood, California. This special double main event will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:20 p.m. ET/PT.
 
The first co-main event will see the 35-year-old Matthysse, an absolutely thunderous puncher out of Chubut, Argentina, facing undefeated Thai superstar Tewa Kiram (38-0. 28 KOs) in a 12-round battle for the vacant WBA Welterweight World Championship.
 
"I am honored to be able to fight for a world championship in just my second fight at welterweight," said Matthysse, a former interim world champion at 140 pounds who has defeated the likes of former two-division champion Lamont "Havoc" Peterson, formerWBO Junior Welterweight Champion Ruslan "The Siberian Rocky" Provodnikovand former three-division titlist Humberto "La Zorrita" Soto. "I understand I am facing a younger, undefeated opponent, but I am confident that 'The Machine' will emerge victorious."
 
Since turning pro at the age of 15, Kiram has torn through an astounding 38 opponents, with 28 of them never hearing the final bell. He won the interim PABA Welterweight Championship in just his sixth fight and defended it - and the full PABA Welterweight title - more than 30 times over seven years. This will mark his first fight outside of Thailand.
 
"I understand not many people know me in the U.S., but they are in for a big surprise on Jan. 27," Kiram said. "I have never been defeated, and I am fully confident that I will return to Thailand with the WBA Welterweight World Championship around my waist."
 
In the second co-main event, Linares, a 32-year-old Venezuelan considered one of the top fighters in the world, will make his second trip to the 'Fabulous' Forum in a row to defend his multiple lightweight world championships against the once-defeated Mercito "No Mercy" Gesta (31-1-2, 17 KOs).
 
"I have travelled all over the world to win and defend my titles, and I am looking forward to having my hand raised in victory once again in America," said Linares, the three-division world champion who holds victories over world champions and contenders such as Anthony "Million Dollar" Crolla, Kevin "Mighty" Mitchell and Gamaliel "El Platano" Diaz. "I know that Gesta has speed and power, but he hasn't been at this level before, and on Jan. 27, he'll know what it's like to face a world champion."
 
Gesta, a 30-year-old from the Philippines, has not tasted defeat in six fights, beating quality opponents including Gilberto "El Flaco" Gonzalez and former contender Martin "El Brochas" Honorio. Gesta is getting his second shot at a world championship more than five years after dropping a unanimous decision to Miguel "Titere" Vazquez for the IBF World Lightweight Championship.
 
"I know firsthand how long it takes to get a shot at a world championship, and I will not allow this opportunity to pass me by," Gesta said. "I understand Linares is a great fighter, but I know I have the skills, speed, power, and great coaching which will get my hand raised in victory."
 
"What a way to kick of 2018 - with two of the top fighters in the sport taking on younger, hungry challengers," said Oscar De La Hoya, CEO and Chairman of Golden Boy Promotions. "It's not often you get two main events on one card, but that is what we will have on Jan. 27 at the "Fabulous" Forum. This card will help keep the momentum that boxing established in 2017."
 
"This is a very important fight for Argentine boxing, for Lucas Matthysse and for Arano Box," said Mario Arano of Arano Boxing. "Matthysse is ready to be a world champion, and we are more than sure that his win will make huge waves throughout the entirety of the Republic of Argentina and South America."
 
"Thailand has never had a Welterweight World champion before," said Taweesin Terry Laosuwanwat, Manager and Promoter of Kiram. "We are making history here, and Tewa [Kiram] will do anything to win this fight. Tewa has never lost before, and he will keep his undefeated record against Matthysse."
 
The remainder of the undercard and the ticket information for this stacked event will be announced shortly.
 
Matthysse vs. Kiram is a 12-round fight for the vacant WBA Welterweight World Championship, and is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Arano Box and Galaxy Promotions. Linares vs. Gesta, a 12-round fight for the WBA, WBC Diamond and Ring  Magazine Lightweight World Championships is presented by Golden Boy Promotions in association with Teiken Promotions. The event is sponsored by Tecate, "THE OFFICIAL BEER OF BOXING."  This special double main event will be held on Saturday, Jan. 27, 2018 at The 'Fabulous' Forum in Inglewood, California and will be televised live on HBO Boxing After Dark beginning at 10:20 p.m. ET/PT.
 
Photos and videos are available to download by clicking here or copying and pasting the link http://bit.ly/MatthysseKiram  into a browser. Credit must be given to Golden Boy Promotions for photos and videos used.
 
For more information visit www.goldenboypromotions.com and www.hbo com/boxing, follow on Twitter at @GoldenBoyBoxing, @hboboxing; become a fan on Facebook at www.facebook.com/GoldenBoyBoxing ; visit us on Instagram at @GoldenBoyBoxing; and follow the conversation using #MatthysseKiram.

Source: Golden Boy Promotions [Press Release]
By Behind The Gloves 10 Dec, 2017
Super Middleweight contender Erik Skoglund (26-1-0, 12 KO's) is facing his toughest battle, after being placed in a medically induced coma following a bleed on the brain sustained in training.

Skoglund, who is known to many for his appearance in the World Boxing Super Series against unbeaten British contender Callum Smith, underwent surgery at a nearby hospital after complaining of feeling unwell after a session in his hometown of Nykoping, Sweden.

A statement on behalf of Kalle and Nisse Sauerland, who promote Skoglund, was released yesterday afternoon on the pair's official Twitter page. It read "Heartbroken." - with an attached statement that can be found below:
By Behind The Gloves 10 Dec, 2017

Lee Selby boxed his way to a comfortable unanimous decision victory over Eduardo Ramirez. From the outset, Selby’s superior speed and footwork were allowing Ramirez limited success in the early rounds helping to build up an early lead.  

Selby entered the ring knowing his IBF Featherweight title was no longer at stake due to Ramirez weighing 8 pounds over the limit, too high to satisfy BBBoC demands for health reasons. Ramirez began the fight on the front foot, but Selby managed to keep out of range of the challenger’s wide, clumsy-looking shots. Throughout the first half of the contest, despite not being at his best, Selby continued to have success, displaying superior ring IQ to his opponent, picking off Ramirez with well-timed counters.  

Despite remaining competitive for large portions of the fight, Selby was just too good on the day for the Mexican. An aggressive twelfth round saw the champion wobble Ramirez on his way to a successful fifth defence of his title. This was the challenger’s first defeat in his 23 fight career so far and saw Selby improve his record to 26-1-0, 9 KO's.

By Behind The Gloves 10 Dec, 2017

Last night at Madison Square Garden, New York, we witnessed a once-promising boxing career fizzle out in ignominy as Guillermo Rigondeaux quit on his stool against Vasyl Lomachenko in their WBO super featherweight title fight after six one-sided rounds, citing a broken hand. 

In what many expected to be a high octane chess match, Lomachenko never got out of third gear. He didn’t need to as Rigondeaux was simply unable to get any kind of rhythm going and was reduced to little more than ducking and holding the entire fight. He connected with a miserable fifteen punches through six rounds compared to fifty five for Lomachenko, never landing more than three punches in a single round. 

For Rigondeaux’s part, he was quick to state in his post-fight interview that he had no excuses and praising Lomachenko’s technical ability, speed and explosiveness, but in the same breath describing the victorious champion as ‘normal’ and claiming that he lost because of his broken hand. Broken hand or not, Lomachenko was emphatically Rigondeaux’s superior in every department last night. Not to mention that numerous boxers throughout history have fought on - and even won - when experiencing far more severe injuries. Rigondeaux was never in serious trouble at any point during the fight. It seemed that, like Nicholas Walters before him, he simply did not want any more of the Ukrainian sensation.

It is a sad end – and indeed it is the end as far as any meaningful career goes - for the Cuban amateur legend, who has arguably been a victim of political circumstances and machinations like no other modern-day boxer: left out in the cold and shunned by his government, by promoters, by opponents and by fans. With few options available to him, he was compelled to move up two weight divisions to face perhaps the best pound-for-pound boxer today, an act deserving of respect and which will no doubt now be overshadowed by his ‘No Mas’ in the ring; boxing’s cardinal sin. 

This was the fight of Rigondeaux’s life and, in no uncertain terms, he blew it. Although he has made it clear that he intends to continue fighting, it is hard to see where he goes from here at thirty-seven-years-of-age. Beltless and coming off a defeat that may not have taken a great physical toll, but caused untold damage in PR terms. All that is left is for us to speculate on what could have been for one of the greatest natural talents to lace up the gloves.

Two thousand five hundred miles away at the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino in Las Vegas, we witnessed another thirty-seven-year-old bring the curtain down on his boxing career, definitively and in vastly contrasting circumstances. 

If you were seeking the ‘anti-Rigondeaux’, look no further than Mexican warhorse Orlando ‘Siri Salido who fell to compatriot Miguel ‘Mickey’ Roman - a man who has also been in his fair share of battles - in the ninth round of their HBO headline fight. It was the first time since 2000 that Salido has been stopped in a professional career that began all the way back in 1996. To put it into perspective, the youngest world boxing champion today, David Benavidez, had not even been born at the time. 

Salido exits the sport as a four-time former world champion (if you include the WBO interim super featherweight title which he held from 2014 to 2015) with a deceptive ledger of 44-14-4 (14 KO's). Half of his defeats came when he was little more than a kid fighting his way out of abject poverty against grown men on the brutal Mexican club circuit. The rest came against world-class opponents. Salido faced his fair share of them throughout his career, men such as Juan Manuel Marquez, Robert Guerrero, Yuriorkis Gamboa, Juan Manuel Lopez, Mikey Garcia, Roman Martinez and Francisco Vargas. Many of them were memorable fight of the year-style contests; in fact, the fight with Vargas was Ring Magazine’s Fight of the Year for 2016. Salido shares one notable opponent with Rigondeaux and it is of course Lomachenko, who Salido faced in the Ukrainian’s second professional fight, using every veteran trick in the book - legal or not - to grit out a split decision victory. 

While Rigondeaux is an unapologetic adherent of the boxing school of ‘hit and not get hit’, Salido’s philosophy in the ring could best be described as ‘hit, get hit and hit back more’ - something which he never deviated from whether it was facing world class opponents or undistinguished foes like Weng Haya and Aristides Perez. It guaranteed two things: entertainment for the watching fans and the fact Salido would never have an easy night. He was indeed a frequent visitor to the canvas during his long career, sometimes multiple times in single bouts, but would always get back to his feet and come roaring back like a man possessed. That was until last night, when age and two decades of training, sparring, making weight and taking punishment finally caught up with him, as he conceded in his post-fight interview. 

Typically, his final fight against Roman was an all-out Mexican-style war, with Salido giving as good as he was getting right till the end when he went down for the last time under a barrage of punches, prompting referee Robert Byrd to step in and call a halt to the contest.

Salido achieved more as a professional boxer than he should have done for a man with his poverty-stricken upbringing, lack of an amateur background and physically-demanding style. His skill-set was underrated, but could never be spoken of in the same breath as that of a Rigondeaux. What he lacked in these departments he made up for with sheer courage, iron toughness and an unswerving will. There was not one inch of quit in him. If Rigondeaux’s decision to retire on his stool on Saturday night left a bitter taste in boxing’s mouth, the image of Salido throwing bombs to the end like a true Mexican guerrero and his visibly emotional retirement announcement in the ring afterwards is one to warm the heart. 

It was an appropriate and dignified exit for a former world champion who also won the respect of his peers, the press and fans alike. 

Adiós y gracias campeón.


Article by: Paul Lam

You can follow Paul on Twitter at: @PaulTheWallLam

By Behind The Gloves 10 Dec, 2017
Caleb Truax produced an upset of seismic proportions as he wrestled the IBF World Super Middleweight title with a stunning majority decision upset victory over James DeGale at The Copper Box Arena in DeGale's home city of London.

Following a prolonged lay-off after sustaining an injured shoulder against Badou Jack in January, DeGale returned to action against Truax in what many felt would be a routine defence of his 168lbs strap. However, things did not go to plan, with Truax tearing up the script with a relentless performance to rip the title from the 2008 Olympic gold medallist.

In the opening round, DeGale shot out of the blocks with zeal, throwing his surgically repaired lead hand as he sought to make a statement in-front of his home crowd. Despite a bright first session, DeGale found himself unable to capitalise and was seemingly reluctant to engage as he gave Truax an opportunity to settle into the fight... and settle in he did.

With DeGale unable to string together any noteworthy offense, Truax marched forward and asserted himself against the champion, landing clean and often on his worryingly stationary opponent. While the first four rounds were relatively even affairs, the fifth saw the challenger explode into action, uncorking a crunching right hand that appeared to break DeGale's nose. With the Harlesden man clearly in trouble, Truax pounced on his man, following up with a ferocious salvo that DeGale did well to survive as he reached the end of the round. Having done things the hard way in many of his recent contests, DeGale was once more in the unenviable scenario of having to tough it out in a messy, bloody dogfight.

However, unlike many of his other battles, he was simply unable to pull the trigger. Truax, who while showing tremendous determination and will to win lacked nuance and guile in his performance, was allowed to to march forward with little resistance from DeGale. The alarming ease in which Truax was able to hit the now ex-champion raise more than a few questions ringside.

After dominating the middle rounds, Truax appeared to take his foot off the gas in the final stages of the contest, seemingly content with the points piled up throughout the fight. While many were expecting a late surge from DeGale in a bid to snatch victory, the push simply never came and the bout drew to a close with many observers scoring the fight to the visitor by a considerable margin.

Despite a frankly embarrassing scorecard of 114-114 offered by the shamefully-inept Dave Parris, Truax was rightfully awarded the majority decision with the remaining cards of 115-112 & 116-112 to snatch the title from DeGale in a monumental upset. With bookmakers making him a staggering 100-1 underdog before the bout, Truax made light of the scale of his victory in his post-fight interview with Behind The Gloves.

"I wish I would have bet it!" he said.

"We knew James was going to come out of the blocks fast early, but we just continued to apply the pressure and force the pace."

Following a fight week that was dominated with talk of DeGale's next opponent, with many alluding to a potential showdown with the winner of the World Boxing Super Series, it would appear that 'Chunky' may have taken his eye off of the ball in the form of Caleb Truax: and he has paid the ultimate price.


Article by: Rob Tebbutt

You can follow Rob on Twitter at: @RobTebbutt
By Behind The Gloves 10 Dec, 2017
Vasyl Lomachenko has retained his WBO World Super Featherweight title after a bizarre sixth round retirement from Guillermo Rigondeaux.

The historic bout, which pitted two double-Olympic gold medallists against each other for the first time in the sport's history, never really caught fire, with the most competitive round of the contest coming in the opener - a session made up largely by posturing by both men.

Lomachenko would prove to be the busier, fresher and more active fighter throughout, finding a home for his jab while negating the sparse return fire from his opponent. The fourth round saw Lomachenko force the action, landing a succession of uppercuts that caught Rigondeaux on the chin. The action - if you could call it such - was interrupted frequently by spoiling and clinching from both men, with Rigondeaux warned several times by referee Steve Willis for excessive holding and ducking below the waist.

As the contest continued, Rigondeaux was unable to establish any sort of rhythm in the bout, becoming less and less active in landing fewer than three punches in each of the completed six rounds. Lomachenko, who started the bout in watchful fashion, became more and more adventurous in the fifth round, and appeared to shake Rigondeaux with a left hand to the top of the head.

Following numerous warnings for fouling, Rigondeaux was docked a point in the sixth (and final) round before being caught again by a southpaw left from Lomachenko shortly after.

With Lomachenko firmly in the ascendancy in the sixth round, the bout was called to a halt in bemusing circumstances, as Rigondeaux retired from the bout - seemingly on impulse - at the end of the sixth: shaking his head at trainer Pedro Diaz, to bring the fight to a premature and, frankly, disappointing end.

"I think I should change my name." said Lomachenko in his post-fight interview.

"I think they should call me 'No-Mas-chenko'!" he joked, in reference to making his last four opponents retire in their corner.

Rigondeaux's post-fight soundbites were of a less jovial nature, where he revealed a supposed injury to his left hand at the end of the second round as the reason - and the only reason - he lost the fight.

"Lomachenko is a good fighter, but he is a normal fighter." said the previously unbeaten Cuban.

"I make no excuses, but he didn't win the fight. I lost the fight because I hurt my hand in the second round and couldn't do anything." he finished, amidst the disapproving hisses of a short-changed live audience.

The bout, in truth, failed to reach anywhere near the level of excitement many fans who had wished for the bout had hoped for: with the speed and youth advantage of Lomachenko apparent from the second round onwards. For Rigondeaux, who seemed to have no clear game-plan in dealing with the Ukrainian maestro, it is - you would imagine - a frustratingly apt end to his boxing career.

With no belt to offer (having been stripped the the WBA at the conclusion of the fight), his lacklustre performance will certainly do him no favours in appealing to the networks that have shunned him throughout his professional vigil.

... Be careful what you wish for, boxing fans. You just might get it.


Article by: Rob Tebbutt

You can follow Rob on Twitter at: @RobTebbutt
By Behind The Gloves 09 Dec, 2017

It was a successful night for the GB boxers on Thursday evening, at the annual GB Boxing Championships at Sheffield’s Institute of Sport, as they came away with victory in all but one of their fights.

Harris Akbar and Louis Lynn led the way with superb performances to claim the welterweight and bantamweight titles respectively, however a few of the UK’s leading amateurs were involved in some close calls on their way to domestic glory.

Akbar dazzled against Scotland’s Stephen Newns, showing his class to add to the English title he won back in April. Newns gave it everything he had, but the flashy Akbar got better as the rounds wore on, picking him off with ease on his way to a unanimous decision victory.

Lynn was simply dominant as he breezed past Welshman Kyle Morrison, who took some big shots and did well to survive past the first round. Morrison was given a standing count and was wide open all night for Lynn to clatter him with some stinging shots. The Englishman unsurprisingly won by unanimous decision.

Popular middleweight Jordan Reynolds came through a tough test with Lewis Richardson, suffering a cut around his right eye in the process as he earned his unanimous decision win, whilst George Crotty was dominant in the end over Harry Woods, as he added light-heavyweight gold to his growing resumé.

Conor Loftus left with a convincing victory over Martin McDonagh, pressing the action and landing some heavy shots to win light-welterweight gold, whilst a sharp Mickey McDonagh won the lightweight title with a sharp performance, although he didn’t have it all his own way, against Thomas Hodgson by split decision.

Lewis Williams was the sole loser for the GB squad, as he was beaten by Natty Ngwenya in the heavyweight division, in a clash that the Army man really grew into and deserved the split decision win. Hosea Stewart and Mitchell Barton clashed in an entertaining super-heavyweight battle, which saw England’s Stewart get the better of the Scot by unanimous decision.

Matthew McHale secured himself a shot at a GB assessment, as he left with the flyweight crown, edging a tight battle with Muzzy Fuyana, representing England. Lisa Whiteside capped off another good year with victory over Carly Skelly in a very tight affair at flyweight, which could have gone either way, with the judges favouring Whiteside by split decision.

Crystal Barker performed well under the constant pressure of Nina Hughes to win the featherweight crown by split decision, whilst Megan Reid of Scotland could perhaps feel slightly hard done by, as she came out of the wrong end of a split decision against GB’s Claudia Havranek at light-welterweight.

GB’s Lauren Price put on an excellent display to get past Stephanie Wroe by unanimous decision at welterweight, whilst Natasha Gale was a level above Roseanna Cox in the middleweight final, dominating the three rounds from start to finish to win by unanimous decision.

Earlier in the night, two other bouts took place, led by Sean Lazzerini’s win over Boris Crighton in a box-off to secure his place on the Scottish team at the Commonwealth Games in Australia next year. Lazzerini will represent his country in the light-heavyweight division on the Gold Coast.

Finally, the closing bout of the night saw GB’s Omarah Taylor prove too good for Scotland’s Gardner Moore in their welterweight exhibition. Taylor won by unanimous decision, which also saw Moore given a standing count in the third.


Article by: Matt Bevan

You can follow Matt on Twitter at: @Matt_Bevan68

By Behind The Gloves 09 Dec, 2017

Rob Tebbutt ( @RobTebbutt ) - Head of U.K. Operations

Vasyl Lomachenko is, in my opinion, the best fighter in the world. He is a unique, mesmeric talent and my favourite fighter in the sport. That being said, I cannot help but pull for Rigondeaux in this fight. His career has been blighted by inactivity and a lack of opportunity - largely through no fault of his own - and he now sees himself in a position where he has to take a fight against a prime pound-for-pound fighter two weight classes heavier than him, or risk falling completely into oblivion. It's a tough ask against anyone, but against Vasyl Lomachenko it is virtually impossible.

Taking my personal feelings out of the equation, I think the activity of Lomachenko will be enough to see him pull away down the stretch. He has fought regularly and against good - albeit not great - opposition, and is undoubtedly the "form" fighter coming into the contest. I see Rigondeaux being able to be highly competitive in the early rounds, due to his extensive pedigree over the shorter format (not that Lomachenko doesn't have the same experience!) - but I feel that Lomachenko's freshness and recent in-ring experience will play a pivotal role in the mid-to-late sessions.

Rigondeaux deserves enormous credit for taking the fight, which should he lose, I am certain he will not  get - but it is just too tall an order for the diminutive Cuban. Should he win, I think there is little doubt that he would become the best pound-for-pound fighter in boxing and it would go down as one of the greatest victories in the history of the sport. Lomachenko is young enough and talented enough that he can forge a 'Hall of Fame' legacy - even off the back of a defeat - but for Rigondeaux, a loss would almost certainly spell the end of a career that deserved so much more.

Lomachenko by decision in a very competitive fight.


Paul Lam ( @PaulTheWallLam ) - Staff Writer

For all the criticism he has faced for his supposedly ‘boring’ style, Guillermo Rigondeaux deserves massive respect for moving up not one but TWO weight divisions to face a beast like Vasyl Lomachenko. The Cuban phenom is one of the most talented fighters of his generation, but in Lomachenko, he will face an opponent boasting a skill-set and athleticism comparable to his own and who happens to be the bigger, younger, stronger man. Loma rarely gets hit flush, but when he has taken shots, from fully fledged featherweights and super featherweights who can punch, he has taken them well. On the other hand, we have seen Rigondeaux hurt by the likes of Robert Marroquin and Hisashi Amagasa. Moreover, he is not known for a high work-rate, whereas Lomachenko has volume to complement his punching accuracy. I expect Rigondeaux to hold his own and set Lomachenko problems that he has never had to deal with in a professional ring, but ultimately I believe the age-old adage that ‘the good big man always beats the good little man’ will hold true in this fight.

Lomachenko by unanimous decision or late stoppage in a competitive, compelling fight .


Gareth Gonet ( @garethgonet ) - Staff Writer

I’m expecting a fascinating chess match between the pair, in which each will be looking to set traps for the other. If Rigondeaux is to win, he will have to take the initiative: something he is unaccustomed to doing. I cannot see him winning by sitting back and picking single shot counters. Lomachenko is likely to land at a higher connect percentage than any previous Rigondeaux opponent, and thus the Cuban will need to exceed his average punch output to win the fight.

I don’t envisage size being as telling a factor as some are making out, due to both Rigondeaux’s defensive awareness and the fact that Lomachenko is unlikely to enter the fight with a view to imposing his physical advantages on the naturally smaller man. That said, Rigondeaux has been dropped several times at 122lbs. However, if he is to be hurt by Lomachenko, I believe that it will be down to skill rather than size.

A Rigondeaux victory would see him go down among the best ever to lace up the gloves. As I touched on previously however, this would require him to put it all on the line by taking the fight to the Ukrainian. All things considered, I give Lomachenko the edge on account of the fact that he is the naturally busier fighter, and it is unlikely that Rigondeaux will be able to completely neutralise his attack as has been the case against each of his previous opponents.

Lomachenko by decision in twelve rounds of pugilistic pornography.


Navi Singh ( @hombre__obscuro ) - Staff Writer

I'm backing the underdog, but he has a tremendous obstacle to overcome in the volume-punching Lomachenko. I think Rigondeaux's key to victory is to slow the overall pace of the fight down, by somehow keeping the Ukrainian honest and gaining his respect, preferably early on. Rigondeaux's strategy, in my opinion, should be to deter his opponent's forward advances with sharp, accurate counter-punching. However, realistically, I think at the end of the day Lomachenko will be too big, too busy and too dynamic for Rigondeaux - who is definitely punching above his weight - and will provide the Cuban with the first loss of his career.

Lomachenko via a lopsided decision or a mid-to-late stoppage.


Daniel Gregory ( @mrdanielgregory ) - Staff Writer

As they always say - a great big guy beats a great small guy, and I expect Lomachenko to win this one. The fact Rigo has taken this fight just goes to show how much he is avoided at his own weight, which is a shame. I'm predicting Lomachenko to take a wide points decision from a technical, tactical fight.

Lomachenko by decision.


Matt Bevan ( @Matt_Bevan68 ) - Staff Writer

Lomachenko will win it but Rigondeaux will not be overwhelmed by the dynamic Ukrainian. Rigondeaux has the ability to stink out the joint or flatten you with a single left hand, however landing cleanly on Lomachenko is a challenge in itself. He has made good fighters look like rank novices, but to just call Rigondeaux a good fighter is disrespectful to the Cuban star. If Rigondeaux can neutralise the movement of Lomachenko then he can pull this off, but that is about as difficult a thing to do as there is in world boxing. It won’t win any fight of the year contests but you won’t be able to do anything else but admire the skills that are on display with this pair.

Lomachenko will take it on points in a fight you won’t be able to take your eyes off.


Luke Madeira ( @lukemadeira15 ) - Staff Writer

For me, Lomachenko is simply going to be too big for Rigondeaux. The fight will be an intriguing one as the pair are without doubt the best technical boxers in the world, but Lomachenko has all of the natural attributes in his favour. Rigondeaux has shown he can beat bigger opponents (most notably in Hisashi Amagassa) but with the ability that Lomachenko possesses, there are very few (if any) people that can beat him, in my opinion.

Lomachenko by decision.


Isaiah Benjamin ( @Mr_IsaiahG ) - Staff Writer

I expect a cautious, chess match type of start with both looking to set traps and establish a rhythm. It’d be surprising if Rigondeaux were to change his style, the world class operator out of Cuba won’t waste any punches, will throw them when he is least likely to be hit and look to land with great precision.

Lomachenko is renowned for his entertaining style but can leave himself open and Rigondeaux, the bigger puncher of the two, is capable of exploiting that. For that reason I feel Lomachenko will begin patiently and up the tempo as the fight progresses, using his lateral movement and work rate to overwhelm the unbeaten 37-year-old. Rigondeaux moving up two weight divisions to Super Featherweight will play a part in this fight and I predict Lomachenko to win on points.

Lomachenko by decision.


Emmily Simcock ( @emmily_jane ) - Staff Writer

I think this will be a very interesting tactical fight for the boxing fans. Lomachenko, the bigger fighter, has amazing footwork and will attack from all angles, whereas Rigondeaux has some of the best defensive skills in the business making him an elusive target. He also enjoys a three inch reach advantage over Lomachenko.

I think the fight goes 12 rounds with Lomachenko winning by decision.


Michael Rueda ( @wolf2988 ) - Staff Writer

This match-up is a hardcore boxing fans dream. It is a fight with many intangibles. Who is the better technician? Can Rigondeaux neutralise Lomachenko's offensive strengths? And after showing vulnerability throughout his career, can he handle the power of the naturally bigger man? For Lomachenko, can he land cleanly on the elusive Cuban maestro? If Rigondeaux's power carries up and he is able to catch Lomachenko, how will the Ukrainian react? Will the size difference play as big a part as many expect? In my opinion, I believe it will be a chess match in the beginning, and Rigondeaux will frustrate Lomachenko en route to building an early lead. I believe the constant pressure from Lomachenko will start to tell in the mid-to-late rounds, with Lomachenko being the more active fighter working to his advantage.

Lomachenko by ninth round stoppage.


Will Lott ( @WillLott27 ) - Staff Writer

I’m going to go for a Lomachenko stoppage win. I feel Rigondeaux’s inactivity and against top opposition - through no fault of his own - will play a part in his downfall. Lomachenko will be too fast, throwing powerful combinations and displaying superior ring IQ. However, I cannot take anything from Rigondeaux: he is still a smart fighter with solid power, but I think Lomachenko will be just too good.

Lomachenko by stoppage.


Jaime Ingleby ( @jaime_ingleby79 ) - Staff Writer

Vasyl Lomachenko and Guillermo Rigondeaux are difficult to split. Both men are double Olympic champions, professional World champions and personal favourites. A look at history offers evidence to back both men for the victory. Lomachenko starts as the favourite, with many people pointing towards his size and weight advantage. While Rigondeaux undoubtedly has the skill to counteract his physical inferiority. In the end: they are both that good. I’ve long been a fan of the Cuban style of boxing and one of its greatest exponents in Guillermo Rigondeaux: and I am picking the little man to upset Bob Arum once again, as he did against Nonito Donaire.

Rigondeaux by decision.


Allan McGoldrick ( @AMCGUK ) - Staff Writer

Lomachenko is the naturally bigger man, having won a lightweight gold medal in the 2008 Olympics before beginning his professional career at Featherweight - still heavier than Rigondeaux has been at any stage of his boxing career. However, Nonito Donaire was also significantly bigger and came up well short against the Cuban in their heavily-hyped 2013 clash. Rigondeaux brings something else to the table than Lomachenko’s previous opponents, and I believe he will pull off the upset with a shocking points win.

Rigondeaux by decision.


Jack Hopgood - Staff Writer

Lomachenko comes into the fight with nearly every advantage, and even Rigondeaux at his very best would have a tough time winning. My prediction is Rigondeaux is not able to set up any real offense, and after the first three rounds, Lomachenko picks up the pace and stops him around the 6th to 9th round. The many hardcore fans hoping for a great technical chess match will be disappointed when Lomachenko makes Rigondeaux look old. I think the cracks have been showing for a while now, and this may be Rigondeaux’s final fight.

Lomachenko by mid-rounds stoppage.


TOTAL: 

Lomachenko - 12

Rigondeaux - 2

By Behind The Gloves 09 Dec, 2017

Former World Champion Jean Pascal Stops Previously Unbeaten Ahmed Elbiali in Round Six of the Main Event of a Special Friday Night Edition of Premier Boxing Champions TOE-TO-TOE TUESDAYS on FS1 & BOXEO DE CAMPEONES on FOX Deportes from Hialeah Park in Miami, Florida

Top Heavyweight Contender Luis Ortiz Scores Second Round Knockout of Daniel Martz with Heavyweight World Champion Deontay Wilder Ringside

Bryant Perrella Earns Unanimous Decision Over Alex Martin & Stephen Fulton Defeats Adam Lopez in Battle of Unbeaten Prospects


MIAMI (December 9, 2017) -The co-main event of the telecast saw top heavyweight contender Luis "King Kong" Ortiz (28-0, 24 KOs) deliver a second round knockout of Daniel Martz (16-6-1, 13 KOs) and swiftly call out heavyweight world champion Deontay Wilder, who had joined the FS1 broadcast ringside.

The towering heavyweights exchanged words in the ring after the fight, with both men looking forward to a possible matchup in 2018.

"I've wanted you and I'm going to bless you again with another opportunity," said Wilder. "I was ready the first time. This is a new day for you. I think you're one of the best heavyweights in the world and I want to prove that I am the best. We must fight each other. You will have your fight."

"Anthony Joshua doesn't want to fight either of us, let's give the world this fight," said Ortiz. "There will be no excuses. I will be ready to do this for Cuba!"

Ortiz made quick work of his opponent, knocking him down with body shots in round one before delivering a counter left hand that put Martz down and prompted referee Samuel Burgos to stop the fight 43 seconds into round two.

Additional televised action featured welterweight prospect Bryant Perrella (15-1, 13 KOs) return to the ring to drop Alex Martin (13-3, 5 KOs) on his way to a unanimous decision victory."I felt pretty good about the fight," said Perrella. "There are some things I'd like to have done different, but considering I was out for 15 months and injured for a long time, I'm pleased with what I was able to accomplish. I didn't get the knockout after hurting him, but I was able to handle him better than anyone else before me."

Perrella got off to a fast start when he landed a thudding lead right hook from the southpaw stance that put Martin on the canvas. Martin was able to recover enough to survive the round and rebounded to put together several good rounds while showing off impressive boxing ability.

The Florida-native Perrella was able to stabilize his lead and ride the momentum from the early knockdown to victory as he picked up his jab and overall aggressiveness in the second half of the fight. After 10 rounds the judges saw the fight in favor of Perrella by scores of 79-72 twice and 77-74.

The opening bout of the telecast saw a battle of unbeaten featherweight prospects as Philadelphia's Stephen Fulton (12-0, 5 KOs) earned a majority decision victory over Adam Lopez (8-1, 3 KOs).

"I worked hard to get the win," said Fulton. "I had to adjust after the first two rounds but I took the fight to him and controlled the pace. He thought he had me hurt in round two, but it wasn't anything. He landed a good shot but that was it. I never stressed about how the fight would turn out as long as I stuck to the game plan."

Lopez had his best moment of the fight late in round two when he staggered and appeared to hurt Fulton, who took a series of right hands before hearing the bell. Fulton was able to adjust and use his jab effectively while countering and rarely allowing Lopez to cut off the ring. Lopez was successful when he was able to get Fulton pinned against the ropes, but after eight rounds the judges ruled in favor of Fulton by scores of 78-74, 77-75 and 76-76.

By Behind The Gloves 08 Dec, 2017

Tickets for the Ali Trophy semi-final bout in the cruiserweight edition of the World Boxing Super Series between WBO World Champion Aleksandr Usyk (13-0, 11 KO's) and WBC World Champion Mairis Briedis (23-0, 18 KO's) go on sale on Monday December 11th at 12.00 (Noon) CET, via bilesuserviss.lv  with prices starting at €50.

This biggest Cruiserweight unification fight for several years, takes place at the Arena Riga in Latvia on January 27, 2018.

“Usyk, World Champion and the number one seed in the tournament collides with Briedis, national hero and World Champion. It doesn’t get much bigger than this,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer. "The noise from 10.000 fans when Mairis Briedis faced Mike Perez at the Arena Riga in September was one of the highlights of the quarter-finals in the World Boxing Super Series."

And Ukrainian Usyk promises another night to remember for boxing fans at the arena and around the world: “Fans at the arena and in front of their TV’s can look forward to a beautiful and interesting battle between two world champions.”

Said Briedis: “I am looking forward to fight once again in front of the incredible crowd at the Arena Riga and I will do everything to make them proud with another victory.”

Fans are asked to sign-up for ticket alerts at worldboxingsuperseries.com  to receive the ticket link emailed directly to their inbox and avoid disappointment.


Source: World Boxing Super Series [Press Release]

By Behind The Gloves 08 Dec, 2017
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