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Damien Hooper: “Tell your readers at Eastside to follow me!”

 Damien Hooper: Tell your readers at Eastside to follow me!Australian Olympic team representative Damien “Super” Hooper is chomping at the bit to turn professional, just days after inking a management agreement with Xcite Fight Promotions. Viewed by many as potentially the most promising prospect out of the London Games, Hooper accounted for American Marcus Browne in the first round before being beaten by eventual Gold medallist Egor Mekhontsev in a close points decision.

At just 20 years of age, the Light Heavyweight is readying himself to get back into peak condition for his professional debut. “I can’t wait to get in there and start putting people to sleep,” he said. “The Olympics was an incredible experience and I’ve enjoyed a well earned break. But now it’s time to get serious and become a professional fighter. I’ve just signed up with my new management team and I can’t wait to get back into the gym”. Hooper’s professional career will be guided by Philippe Fondu, Brendan Bourke and Matt Clark.

Hooper will be trained by Gareth Williams, who guided him as an amateur and also trains a number of professionals such as Hooper’s Olympic team-mate Cameron Hammond, currently promoted by Hatton Promotions Asia Pacific and Welterweight prospect Paddy Murphy. “Damien has the potential to be a world champion, there’s no denying that,” Williams offered. “It’s up to him though to stay focused on his boxing goals and I think he’s ready to do just that”. Continue reading

Barthelemy wins first controversial decision of 2013

By Joseph Herron – If fight fans were hopeful for less controversy throughout the boxing New Year, their optimism was quickly dashed after watching the season opener of ESPN’s Friday Night Fights.

Highly touted Super Featherweight prospect Rances Barthelemy (18-0, 11 KOs) was awarded a very questionable unanimous twelve round decision over Canadian resident Arash Usmanee (20-1, 10 KOs) in the main event of an entertaining fight card at the Magic City Casino in Miami, Florida.

The three judges at ringside scored the bout 115-113, and 116-112 twice…all in favor of the local fighter, Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy.

Going into the contest, most fight pundits favored the Cuban exile because of his natural athletic gifts, extensive amateur pedigree, and the world class sparring during preparation in Miami and Las Vegas.

But for much of the twelve round contest, Arash Usmanee looked to be the more technically sound pugilist. Continue reading

Lamont Peterson vs. Kendall Holt possible for February 22nd on ESPN2

By Bill Phanco: IBF light welterweight champion Lamont Peterson (30-1-1, 15 KO’s) looks to be finally about to defend his IBF title after having won it over a year ago in defeating former IBF/WBA light welterweight champion Amir Khan in December 2011. Peterson and #4 IBF Kendall Holt (28-5, 16 KO’s) could be facing each other on February 22nd on ESPN2 at the D.C Armory in Washington, DC. Continue reading

Canelo Alvarez not likely to face Trout next

By Rob Smith: WBC junior middleweight champion Saul “Canelo” Alvarez’s manager Eddy Reynosa says that he and Canelo will be meeting with Golden Boy Promotions in two weeks to decide who will be Canelo’s next opponent for March or May 4th. Canelo had previously requested that he wanted to fight Floyd Mayweather Jr, Sergio Martinez or Miguel Cotto on May 4th, but it doesn’t appear that Golden Boy will be able to land any of those big names. Continue reading

Broner with possibility to fight on May 4th if he massacres Gavin Rees on 2/16

By Michael Collins: WBC lightweight champion Adrien Broner (25-0, 21 KO’s) can write his own ticket to a highly visible fight on May 4th on the Floyd Mayweather Jr. undercard on HBO if Broner routes Brit Gavin Rees (37-1-1, 18 KO’s) on February 16th at the Boardwalk Hall in Atlantic City, New Jersey. Continue reading

Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy headlines season premier of “Friday Night Fights”

By Joseph Herron – Highly touted Super Featherweight prospect Rances “Kid Blast” Barthelemy (17-0, 11 KOs) takes his first step towards 130 pound contention tonight on the season premier of ESPN’s “Friday Night Fights” from the Magic City Casino in Miami, Florida, when he faces undefeated Arash Usmanee (20-0, 10 KOs) of Canada.

The scheduled twelve round main event will not only serve as the Cuban exile’s first big step up in competition, but also determine the #2 IBF position in the wide open Junior Lightweight division.

Against a very tough, unbeaten opponent, “Kid Blast” will be marching into undiscovered territory as he embarks on his first outing over eight rounds. Most fight critics and boxing scribes believe the “Cuban Missile” to be ready for his challenging litmus test on network television.

What has a lot of boxing insiders buzzing is Barthelemy’s big 5’11” frame, power in both fists, and his ability to comfortably make the 130 pound weight restriction. Most fight pundits claim Rances Barthelemy has the potential to be a future star of the sport. Continue reading

Peter Fury hoping Tyson will fight Vitali in March

By Michael Collins: Peter Fury, the trainer for unbeaten #4 WBC Tyson Fury (20-0, 14 KO’s), is hoping that the 24-year-old Fury can jump in line in front of the arguably much more popular David Haye to get a title shot against the 41-year-old WBC heavyweight champion Vitali Klitschko in March or at some point in 2013. Continue reading

Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero: “God has put me in this position to humble everyone in the sport”

 Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero: “God has put me in this position to humble everyone in the sport”By Joseph Herron: With great speculation concerning a huge May 4th fight date with Floyd Mayweather Jr, Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero truly believes that he and his team are on the cusp of something very special.

While nothing has been officially confirmed by all parties involved, the interim WBC Welterweight Champion has been riding an incredible wave of success both in and out of the ring since winning the coveted green strap.

“Before my last two bouts, everyone counted me out and smirked at the idea of me jumping up two weight classes and dominating my opposition. Everyone thought that I would get knocked out. I just laughed it off and continued to believe in my Lord and savior Jesus Christ and continued to follow his plan for me.”

“Everyone can see it unfolding every day and it’s befuddling all of his detractors. They’re wondering how I’ve moved up to Welterweight and have dominated my opposition. If you look throughout my entire career, I really haven’t lost that many rounds. I’ve dominated fighters and champions. Through the power of Christ, nothing is impossible and nothing can stop me.”

While his impressive showings against Selcuk Aydin and Andre Berto in 2012 have garnered universal respect throughout the boxing industry, most fight scribes and boxing fans feel that his inspirational winning streak will come to an end in May, if and when he faces the pound for pound king, Floyd Mayweather Jr. Continue reading

Adonis Stevenson will have to step aside for Froch/Kessler II

 Adonis Stevenson will have to step aside for Froch/Kessler IIBy Joseph Herron: On October 12th, 1012, Super Middleweight contender Adonis “Superman” Stevenson knocked out Donovan George in spectacular fashion in the final round of a very entertaining twelve round slugfest to become the IBF mandatory opponent for current 168 pound title holder Carl “The Cobra” Froch.

According IBF bi-laws, Froch was given 90 days to negotiate a title defense with the number one contender after dispatching Yusaf Mack in three rounds on November 17th, 2012, in Nottingham, England.

But now, according to a spokesperson for the IBF, Adonis will have to step aside and wait until a unification bout between WBA title holder Mikkel Kessler and the incumbent IBF champ takes place.

“Usually, a mandatory defense is required of the reigning IBF Champion ninety days after a voluntary title defense,” stated a spokesperson for the International Boxing Federation. “But a unification bout always takes precedence over a mandatory defense upon request from the reigning champion.”
Continue reading

Five Boxers to Watch out for in 2013

By Jazz Gill:

Heavyweight – Magomed Abdusalamov (16-0, 16 knockouts)

Quietly going about his business in a spectacular yet efficient manner, Russian Magomed Adbusalamov has amassed a superb record undefeated record, with a highlight reel KO that makes him look like a white Mike Tyson.

A standout amateur, Abdusalamov lost to David Price in 2008 before he turned pro. Despite the physical disparities the two are very similar in status, both holding similar record and of similar age, with Abdusalamov also just as good at this stage. The 31 year old is short for a modern heavyweight at just 6ft 3in but he has a compact explosive style. Continue reading

Agbeko fights for IBO title in Ghana February 22

 Agbeko fights for IBO title in Ghana February 22By Prince Dornu-Leiku: Former IBF Bantamweight champion Joseph King Kong Agbeko returns to the ring on February 22 against Colombian Luis Melendez for the vacant International Boxing Organisation (IBO) Bantamweight belt when he fights in Accra for the first time in 6 years.

Scheduled for 12 rounds at the Accra Sports Stadium, it will be the former two-time world champion’s first bout since losing the bid to unify the IBF Bantamweight and WBC Silver Bantamweight titles against Abner Mares way back on December 3, 2011.

Promoted as the maiden bill of the newly launched Fresh King Entertainment syndicate, the fight against Melendez (34-8-1, 25 KOs) will also be the first time Agbeko, 28-4, 22 KOs will be fighting on the homeland since claiming a 4th round TKO against Baba Nsor on March 23, 2007 at the Azumah Nelson Sports Stadium in Accra. Continue reading

10 Fights that Must Happen in 2013

By Jazz Gill: 2012 was a superb year of fights for boxing fans, even if it was the year when the dream of Mayweather vs Pacquiao died forever.

The two still had great fights respectively, whilst other veterans like the Klitschko brothers and Sergio Martinez continued to dominate. At the same time, new young stars proved they are capable of going u the next step – Austin Trout and Danny Garcia for example – whilst others proved they are among the elite of today and ready to take the mantle of the aforementioned veterans (Nonito Donaire, Robert Guerrero and Andre Ward).
Continue reading

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