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Adamek – Cunningham Undercard; ESPN new host Grisham



Before Tomasz Adamek and Steve Cunningham lock horns in the nationally televised main event at the Sands Events Center in Bethlehem, PA on Saturday afternoon, a full slate of “pick-em” preliminary bouts are scheduled for the live ringside audience. In the 8-round televised co-feature, Vyacheslav “Czar” Glazkov, 13-0, 9 KOs, battles Tor Hamer, 19-1, 12 KOs, in a showdown of rising heavyweights. Both men are looking to make a name for themselves and have a golden opportunity to do so. They will fight before a packed house and a big NBC television audience. Hamer, of New York, is a little better known on the East Coast, but Ukraine’s Glazkov, fighting in the USA for just the second time, will look to use his punching power as his introduction to boxing fans. The fight opens the NBC 4 PM ET TV broadcast.

In a terrific match between two local lightweights, Naim Nelson, 8-0, 1 KO, takes on Osnel Charles, 9-4-1, 1 KO, in an 8-round bout that just could steal the show. Nelson, 22, of Philadelphia, won 70 out of 77 amateur fights and five Philadelphia Golden Gloves titles before turning pro midway through 2011. Nelson won the vacant Pennsylvania state lightweight championship in his last fight with a 10-round decision over Philly tough guy, Victor Vasquez. This will be his sixth fight in 2012.

Charles, 28, is a crowd-pleaser in his backyard Atlantic City casinos. A pro since 2009, Charles also holds a points win over Victor Vasquez, as well as victories over three one-time East Coast prospects, Danny McDermott, Chris Green, and Anthony Flores. His 2011 KO of Flores was a classic one-punch stunner.

Popular heavyweight William Miranda, of Allentown, returns to Bethlehem on Saturday’s card in a 4-rounder against David Williams of Philadelphia. Miranda, 34, survived cuts over both eyes September 21 at the Sands Event Center, but rallied to post a six-round decision over Pedro Martinez, of Philadelphia. His record is 6-5-1, with every bout a crowd-pleaser.

35 year old Williams, 6-6-1, 2 KOs, nearly pulled an upset in his most recent fight, but lost on points to Patrick Farrell, in a 4-round brawl at the Prudential Center, in Newark, NJ, on June 16th.

Amateur standout Jerome Rodriguez, of Bethlehem, takes on Edwardo Stith, of Philadelphia, in a four-round junior welterweight contest. Rodriguez is 1-0-1, and Stith makes his pro debut.

In a contest of hard-luck Philadelphia welterweights, Korey Sloane, 2-5-1, meets Tyrell Boggs, 0-5, in a four rounder. Both fighters have been matched tough throughout their young careers, but always come to fight.

The main event between Adamek and Cunningham is a 12-round fight for Adamek’s IBF North American Heavyweight Title, and is a rematch of their classic 2008 cruiserweight championship bout. This time they fight as heavyweights and are expected to be “Bigger, Better, Stronger.”

DECEMBER 22 FIGHT INFO:

December 22nd at Sands Casino Resort Bethlehem in Pennsylvania. The main event features current IBF North American Heavyweight Champion Tomasz “Goral” Adamek (47-2, 29 KO’s) of Kearny, N.J. vs. Steve “USS” Cunningham (25-4, 12 KO’s) of Philadelphia, Pa., in a 12-round heavyweight fight.

The main event and co-feature will be broadcast on NBC network TV beginning 4PM ET. The card is presented by Main Events and Ziggy Promotions in association with Peltz Boxing, DiBella Entertainment and Pushka.

To purchase the remaining tickets while they last, contact the Sands Bethlehem Event Center box office 610-297-7414, Main Events 973-200-7050 and Peltz Boxing 215-765-0922, Ticketmaster, http://www.ticketmaster.com/Tomasz-Adamek-vs-Steve-Cunningham-tickets/artist/1794999 , and Ticketmaster Sales: during regular hours 800-745-3000, Ticketmaster Express: automated phone line for self-service ticket sales, even after hours, 866-448-7849.

ESPN’s Friday Night Fights Returns January 4 with New Host Todd Grisham

Bernardo Osuna New On-Site, Bi-Lingual Reporter for ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes

ESPN’s Friday Night Fights presented by Corona Extra will return January 4 at 10 p.m. ET on ESPN2 HD and ESPN Deportes with a new studio host and on-site reporter.

Todd Grisham, an anchor for ESPNEWS’ Highlight Express, MMA Live and SportsCenter, has been named Friday Night Fight’s studio host. Bernardo Osuna, who served in that role in 2012, will become the series’ first-ever on-site reporter, contributing to ESPN’s Friday Night Fights in English, and ESPN Deportes’ Viernes De Combates in Spanish.

Blow-by-blow commentator Joe Tessitore and ringside analyst Teddy Atlas will return to describe the action. Both are recipients of the prestigious Sam Taub Award for Excellence in Broadcast Journalism presented by the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA): Atlas (2001), Tessitore (2010).

Prior to joining ESPN, Grisham served as a WWE backstage interviewer, play-by-play commentator and ring announcer.

The season premiere will match undefeated Junior Featherweights Rances Barthelemy (17-0, 11 KOs) and Arash Usmanee (20-0, 10 KOs) in the 12-round main event. The card, from the Magic City Casino in Miami, is promoted by Warriors Boxing.

ESPN Deportes’ boxing news and analysis show A Los Golpes (7:30 p.m. Mondays), which debuted in October, continues with guest analyst Julio César Chávez Sr. and co-hosts Osuna and David Faitelson. The Viernes De Combates (“Friday Night Fights” in Spanish) telecast team includes 2011 BWAA “Fight of the Year” boxer Delvin Rodriguez and Alex Pombo ringside with Leopoldo Gonzalez and Pablo Viruega in the studio. Friday’s 30-minute news and analysis show Golpe a Golpe will be co-hosted by World Champion Juan Manuel Marquez and Jorge Eduardo Sanchez.

More Fights

Friday Night Fights, which typically has included a televised main event and co-feature, will now add a third fight in most 2013 shows.

Ultra-Mo

Every Friday Night Fights telecast will implement an ultra slo-mo camera, providing some of the most dramatic and amazing replays of a fight’s biggest punches.

WatchESPN and ESPN3
Every Friday Night Fights card will be available on WatchESPN, ESPN’s online destination that delivers live access to ESPN, ESPN2, ESPNU, ESPN3 and ESPN Buzzer Beater/Goal Line on computers, smartphones and tablets. Replays of Friday Night Fights cards will be available on ESPN3, ESPN’s multiscreen network accessible online at WatchESPN.com, on smartphones and tablets via the WatchESPN app and through ESPN on Xbox LIVE to Gold members.

Social Media
ESPN’s Friday Night Fights social media presence in 2013 will continue with the “Live Friday Night Fights Facebook Voting App,” an application on the ESPN FNF Facebook page that allows viewers to score the fight round-by-round. Osuna (@osunaespn) and Nigel Collins (@ESPNFNF), ESPN boxing analyst/former Editor-in-Chief of The Ring magazine, will live tweet during every show.

Upcoming Schedule:

ESPN’s Friday Night Fights will total 29 dates in 2013. Upcoming schedule below:

Date

Time (ET)

Main Event

Location

Network

Fri, Jan 4

10 p.m.

Rances Barthelemy vs. Arash Usmanee—12-rounds Junior Featherweight

Magic City Casino, Miami

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN

Fri, Jan 11

9 p.m.

John Molina vs. Dannie Williams—12 rounds Lightweight

Pueblo Pavilion, Santa Fe, N.M.

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN

Fri, Jan 25

9 p.m.

Serhiy Dzinziruk vs. Brian Vera—12 rounds Middleweight

Turning Stone Casino, Verona, N.Y.

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN

Fri, Feb 1

9 p.m.

Carlos Molina vs. Cory Spinks, 12-rounds Junior Middleweight

UIC Center, Chicago

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN

Fri, Feb 8

9 p.m.

David Lemeiux vs. Jose Miguel Torres—12 rounds, Middleweight

Bell Center, Montreal

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN

Fri, Feb 15

9 p.m.

Delvin Rodriguez vs. George Tahdooahnippah—10-rounds, Middleweight

Mohegan Sun Arena, Uncasville, CT

ESPN2, ESPN Deportes, WatchESPN