Tarver vs. Muriqi Lands in Hartford, CT!

tarverMay 2007 ( New York) –Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing is proud to announce that on June 9th the former undisputed Light Heavyweight Champion Antonio “Magic Man” Tarver (24-4, 18KO’s) will vie for the vacant IBO Light Heavyweight title when he takes on Elvir “Kosovo Kid” Muriqi (34-3, 21KO’s). This world championship doubleheader will also feature Chad Dawson (23-0, 15KO’s) making a voluntary defense of his WBC Light Heavyweight World title against Jesus Ruiz (19-4,17KO’s). The event will take place at the ultramodern Connecticut Convention Center, located in the new riverfront district in downtown Hartford, CT.

“We’re happy to be bringing world-class championship boxing to Connecticut’s Capital” stated Star Boxing CEO Joe DeGuardia. “This World Championship doubleheader will ignite the city of Hartford. We encourage the fans to come out and experience the electricity an event of this magnitude generates. It will be the event of the year for Connecticut.”

“We are extremely proud to bring events of this caliber to the City of Hartford and the State of Connecticut,” said Mike Costelli, General Manager of the Connecticut Convention Center. “Star Boxing is a great organization that will bring national attention to the convention center as a viable venue for future boxing events.”

Tarver’s last fight took place on the silver screen starring as “Mason ‘The Line’ Dixon” opposite Sylvester Stallone in the critically acclaimed “Rocky Balboa”.

"The Magic Man is back," Tarver said, "On June 9, I am going to make Muriqi disappear."

“Antonio Tarver is in peak shape and is anxious to reclaim his status as monarch of the Light Heavyweight division” declared Star Boxing CEO Joe DeGuardia.

Media scribes describe Elvir Muriqi as having unequalled heart and fighting spirit. On June 9th Tarver will be facing a real-life Rocky. “This is the opportunity he’s been waiting and working hard for—he’ll make it a war” said Joe DeGuardia.

On the undercard, Connecticut’s own “Bad” Chad Dawson, the current WBC Light Heavyweight Champion, returns to the ring after his dominating performance over the former WBC Champion Tomasz Adamek this past February. “Bad” Chad defends his title against Jesus Ruiz.

"Hail the conquering hero," said Gary Shaw, Dawson's promoter. "There is nothing better than a world champion making his first title defense on his home turf. Chad is one of boxing's brightest young stars and on June 9, he will write the first chapter of a very long and successful world championship story."

A press conference to announce the Tarver vs. Muriqi and Dawson’s first defense is scheduled for next Tuesday May 15, at the Connecticut Convention Center Ballroom. Ticket information will be announced shortly.

This fight will be televised live on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING (10 p.m. ET/PT, delayed on the West Coast)


Antonio Tarver was catapulted to the forefront of the boxing world on May 15, 2004, when, with a single devastating punch, he derailed the pound-for-pound king Roy Jones Jr. Such was Tarver’s confidence that when the referee asked the fighters “Do you have any questions”, he asked his opponent “You got any excuses tonight, Roy?” That bravado combined with his wicked left hand turned him into an overnight sensation.

A bronze medalist at the 1996 Atlanta Olympic Games, Tarver cemented his legacy as a professional in June 2005 by reclaiming the title he lost in a disputed decision to Glen Johnson. Later that year he successfully defended his title by once again triumphing over Roy Jones Jr.

Recognizing Tarver’s charisma, Sylvester Stallone approached him to play Mason “The Line” Dixon in “Rocky Balboa” the critically-acclaimed final chapter of the Academy Award winning “Rocky” series. Tarver took to the silver screen as naturally as he does the squared circle, and the film was a critical and financial success.

On June 9th, it’s back to business for the part-time movie star and full-time southpaw, as he attempts to recapture his third Light Heavyweight title.

Elvir Muriqi, a native of Kosovo, now fights out of the Bronx, NY. He has a professional record of 34 wins, 21 coming by KO. He is a former 1998 Golden Gloves Champion in the 178-lb weight class and has worked with world-class trainers such as Teddy Atlas. He has been world ranked as high as #5, and his last appearance—December ’06 in New York–was a stunning one round KO of Derrick Reed.

Muriqi’s most memorable moment came on July 23rd, 2002 at New Rock City in New Rochelle, New York, when Muriqi scored a highlight reel knockout over Philadelphia’s Sam Ahmad. The first round of this wild affair featured three knockdowns, two of Muriqi and one of Ahmad. Muriqi was down twice more in the second, but showed his trademark heart in storming back to stop Ahmad the following round. The fight one of the most exciting ever televised on ESPN2.

Inspired by his father, Rumz Muriqi, a war hero and member of the Kosovo Liberation Army that supplies food and clothing to some of the province's nearly 180,000 homeless, Elvir has taken to the mountains of the Poconos in Pennsylvania for a rigorous camp at high altitude. An always exciting slugger, he believes he is destined for greatness he feels the support of the Albanian community will elevate him to victory.

About Star Boxing
Star Boxing has been in operation since 1992. Star Boxing's stable features world class athletes and has consistently brought credibility, integrity, and exciting fights to the boxing industry.

For more information on Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing, visit

About The Connecticut Convention Center

The Connecticut Convention Center is located on the eastern edge of Downtown Hartford, overlooking the beautiful Connecticut River and Adriaen’s Landing, the city’s exciting new riverfront district. With over 140,000 square feet of exhibition space, a 40,000 square foot ballroom and 25,000 square feet of flexible meeting space, it is the largest convention facility between New York and Boston, featuring exceptional highway access at the crossroads of New England, where Interstates 84 and 91 meet.

For more information on Connecticut Convention Center, visit

This World Championship Doubleheader brought to you by Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing in association with Gary Shaw Productions and AT Entertainment

Article posted on 10.05.2007

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