Francisco Rodriguez Headlines In Chicago On July 25

CHICAGO, IL (July 15, 2008) Chicago fan favorite Francisco “EL NINO AZTECA” Rodriguez returns to the ring on Friday, July 25th at the Aragon Ballroom in the ten round main event against El Paso veteran Alex “EL DIABLO” Becerra..

The Rodriguez/Becerra bantamweight clash headlines CHICAGO’s PRIDE, an outstanding evening of world class professional boxing featuring some of the city’s finest prospects and future contenders.

Tickets for CHICAGO’S PRIDE can be purchased in advance through Ticketmaster ( , 312-559-1212) or through the 8 Count Productions offices at 312-226-5800. The Aragon Ballroom is located at 1106 W. Lawrence Ave. , adjacent to the corner of Broadway and Lawrence. Doors will open at 7pm, with the first bell at 8pm.

The 24 year old Rodriguez, a former amateur standout, is coming off his finest performance as professional, a third round knockout of former world title challenger Angel Priolo on May 9th at Cicero Stadium.

Ciudad Juarez, Mexico native Becerra sports a record of 19-6 (9KO’s) over his nine year career including ten round battles with Valentin Leon (W-MD10) and David Martinez (L-MD10). This will be Becerra’s Chicago debut.

With the win raising his record to 12-2 with 8 knockouts, Rodriguez discussed the knockout of Priolo and his upcoming fight against Becerra.

“Following the loss to Wilson , the Priolo win was a huge confidence builder. I trained hard for that fight and had watched some of his previous fights. Our game plan was to slip and counter with body shots and it worked perfectly.

I didn’t take a lot of time off between fights and I’ve been sparring bigger guys, even up to lightweight. There aren’t a lot of guys my size to spar in Chicago but it works well as I have the experience of slipping harder punches.

With Becerra I haven’t seen any tapes, but he’s known about the fight for a while so I’m sure he’ll be in good shape to fight.”

The Becerra fight is not only Rodriguez’s first ten rounder, but his first main event. “It doesn’t make much difference about being in the main event, except that I know what time I’m fighting as opposed to being in a TV swing bout. The band is happy about it, they can play all night before I get in the ring”, joked Rodriguez. Francisco is accompanied to the ring by a ten piece band that signals his always impressive ring walk.

About his future Rodriguez said, “I don’t look that far ahead, my whole focus is on Becerra. The only thing after that is my wedding day on August 16th with my wife Sonia. We actually got married in a very small ceremony a couple of years ago, but this time we’re having a large church wedding.

I’m happy to do what I love and I’m very grateful to the tremendous fan support I get every time I fight.”

In the co-main event, popular Chicago featherweight Jose Hernandez will return to the ring after a one year absence to face Mexico City ’s Jose Navarrete over eight rounds.

The heavy handed Hernandez, 22-4 (14KO’s) was last seen losing a very close twelve round decision to three time world title challenger Rocky Juarez in the co-main event on the massive Oscar De La Hoya/Floyd Mayweather PPV card on May 5, 2007 in Las Vegas.

A native of Mexico City now living in Chicago, Navarrete holds a slightly misleading record of 9-15 with three knockouts. Most recently he battled highly regarded unbeaten prospect Argenis Mendez over six rounds before dropping a six round split decision in a bout televised by SOLO BOXEO from Reading , PA on June 6, 2008.

In a six round featherweight special feature attraction at CHICAGO’S PRIDE, Puerto Rico native Ivan “THE BABY BOY ASSASSIN” Rodriguez, 8-4-1 (3KO’s) currently residing in Waukegan, IL, returns to the ring in a six round bout against San Luis Potosi, Mexico born, Barbaro Zepeda.

Also appearing at CHICAGO’S PRIDE will be popular Chicago light heavyweight Mike “THE HAMMER” Nevitt, 14-1 (5KO’s) in a six round bout against Joplin ’s Missouri ’s Terrance Smith, 5-5-2 (3KO’s)

Rounding out the card is unbeaten Puerto Rican sensation Gadiel Andaluz, 3-0 (2KO’s) who will appear in a four round lightweight bout

Much more information on CHICAGO’S PRIDE will be announced shortly.

Along with Dominic Pesoli's 8 Count Productions, CHICAGO’S PRIDE is presented by TCF Bank and New York Jewelers.

The Master of Ceremonies for the evening will be nationally known professional sports announcer, Thomas Treiber.

The weigh-in for CHICAGO’S PRIDE will take place at MARISCOS EL VENENO seafood restaurant at 7pm on Thursday, July 24th. MARISCOS EL VENENO is located at 6651 S. Pulaski on the southwest side of Chicago .

8 Count Productions was started by Dominic Pesoli in 1998 and has consistently presented the highest quality professional boxing events in Chicagoland. In 2003, Pesoli along with former featherweight contender Mike Garcia opened JABB Boxing Gym, a 6,000 square foot venue dedicated to the finest Chicagoland boxers of all talent levels.

Article posted on 16.07.2008

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