Boxing News: Walker-Echols, Danny O’Connor, Steve Cunningham
September 29, 2008 (Merrillville, IN) Entering his final week of training Michael "The Midnight Stalker" Walker (18-1, 12 KO's) is primed and ready to go for this Friday's "Radisson Rumble". The hard working Walker is finishing the 8-week training camp for his October 3rd rematch against former top world rated contender Antwun Echols (31-8, 27 KO's)..
Article posted on 29.09.2008
In February Walker and Echols met for the first time during the Main Event of the ESPN 2 Friday Night Fights. After ten action packed, back and forth hard fought rounds the judges saw the fight a draw. Walker on the other hand thought that though taking the fight on one days notice he had done enough to win the fight. In this upcoming October 3rd match up Walker plans to leave no doubt who should have won the first fight.
"This time its personal!" Said Walker. "Echols won't get a chance for the judges to score this fight. I have trained hard and am fully focused for Antwun. I have just finished a great training camp at the One In A Million Gym in Merrillville and I am ready to show the fans Michael Walker is a force to be reckoned with in the Middleweight division. Friday can't get here soon enough for me and once we are in the ring it is going to be a night where Antwun Echols will never be able to forget why they call me 'The Midnight Stalker'."
One In A Million Boxing President/CEO Octavius James shared in Walker's enthusiasm. "This is a huge fight for Michael. He is coming off his first professional loss after facing #2 World ranked David Lopez in June on nationally televised Solo Boxeo. This is the comeback fight that can solidify Michael's position in the Middleweight division and show the boxing world that he is a world-class contender. Walker and Echols first encounter was an absolute barnburner there was non-stop action from the first punch until the final bell; it was one of the most exciting match ups I have watched. The fans are in for an absolute treat come Friday Night. Michael understands this is a must win fight for him and I know he is up to the challenge."
In the Co-Main Event fast rising middleweight Derrick "Superman" Findley (12-2, 7 KO's) is coming off two huge victories as he returns home to fight for his local fans. Plus in a special attraction bout Juan "Mexican Connection" Aguilar (6-1, 3 KO's) takes on Orphuis Waite (2-0, 2 KO's). Rounding out this exciting card will be Heavyweight Michael "Quiet Assassin" Parker (6-0, 5 KO's), Welterweight sensation Ed Ochoa (5-0, 5 KO's), and the newest member of Team One In A Million middleweight Josh Crouch (1-0, 1 KO), and the return of Chicago's Boxing Promoter Sam Merza (14-1, 11 KO's)
Radisson Hotel @ Star Plaza is conveniently located at I-65 & US 30 in Merrillville, IN.
Ticket prices are $100 VIP $75 VIP ringside $50 ringside $30 general admission.
Tickets for the "Radisson Rumble" can be purchased online at www.Ticketmaster.com any Ticket Master location or by calling 219-791-1234, 312-559-1212, or 866-438-7372
US Olympic Alternate Danny O’Connor Now a true professional boxer
FRAMINGHAM, Mass. (September 29, 2008) – With his successful pro debut now behind him, 2008 U.S. Olympic first alternate Danny O’Connor is hoping to stay busy as well as further adjust to fighting longer rounds with smaller gloves and no headgear.
In front of a large crowd of his enthusiastic fans and escorted into the ring by a Irish bagpipe player, O’Connor turned in an impressive performance against on September 17 in Manchester (NH), using a devastating body attack en route to stopping Jose Guerrido at 1:55 of the second round, when Guerrido’s trainer – former two-time world champion Aaron Davis – threw in the towel.
“It turned out to be like me and my coaches envisioned it,” O’Connor reflected. “All of the hard training paid off. I felt good in the ring. I was a little too anxious going for the early knockout and didn’t show all of the ability I have. I’m a big body puncher. I love banging the body because it slows down the opponent and leaves open holes for my shots. That’s what happened.
“I did feel a lot of pressure fighting in front of so many of my fans and family, as well as Leon (Margules, Seminole Warriors Boxing executive director) coming up from Florida to watch me fight for the first time. But I’ve always fought well under pressure and I settled right down. It’s going to take a little while to get used to fighting with smaller gloves, but I liked fighting without head gear, and didn’t really get into the longer rounds. Punching felt different with 8-ounce gloves, but it’s something I’ll quickly adapt to. I did feel naked fighting without a shirt. I like fighting as a professional better than as an amateur.”
The 23-year-old O’Connor, fighting out of Framingham (MA), won this year’s US Future Stars National Championship, in which he was named Most Outstanding Boxer, as well as the National Golden Gloves Tournament, both in the 141-pound light welterweight division. Danny’s most notable victory as an amateur was a dominating victory, 23-3, against eventual 2008 Olympic Gold medalist Felix Diaz, of the Dominican Republic, on May 29 in a USA-Dominican Republic dual meet in Chattanooga, Tennessee.
“I really couldn’t have asked for a better result,” O’Connor’s co-manager (with Rob Valle) and head trainer David Keefe remarked. “He wasn’t hurt at all and threw some great body shots, which will serve him well as he moved up. I’m also very happy with the promotional pick we made with Leon and Seminole Warriors Boxing.”
Among the celebrities watching O’Connor’s pro debut were legendary boxers Roberto Duran and Tommy Hearns, who won the same National Golden Gloves light welterweight title in 1977 as Danny did this year, Hall of Fame trainer Angelo Dundee, and members of he pop group “Boys Like Girls.” Keefe’s brother John for the is a drummer for gold-record selling “Boys Like Girls” and the band has supported Danny.
For more information about Danny O’Connor go to www.dannyoconnorboxing.com.
Steve Cunningham Cheers On Krzysztof Wlodarczyk In His New Challenge
IBF Cruiserweight World Champion, Steve 'USS' Cunningham, was quick to praise the performance of his former championship opponent, Krzysztof 'Diablo' Wlodarczyk 41-2 (3KOs), who is taking part in the Polish television version of American hit series 'Dancing with the Stars'.
'USS' Cunningham and 'Diablo' have had two epic title battles. The first, in November 2006, saw Wlodarczyk lift the vacant IBF Championship Belt with a controversial split-points decision in his home city of Warsaw, Poland. An incensed Cunningham demanded a rematch, The IBF agreed and ordered one, which led to them meeting again just six months later, again in Poland, this time Cunningham was victorious.
After watching the video of Wlodarczyk in action on the dancefloor Cunningham said "I was really impressed to see Diablo dance. He was really good. He has all the right moves."
"It's great to see boxers stepping out of their "arena" and trying something new while challenging themselves. Diablo is a great sportsman and I hope that he does well in the competition. We'll be watching from America to cheer him on."
When asked are we likely to see him on the dancefloor in the American 'Dancing with the Stars', Cunningham laughed nervously, before saying "I'd love to one day, but right now I'm focusing on boxing. I have a big title defense fight coming up. "
Steve 'USS' Cunningham will be defending his title against another Polish opponent, Tomasz 'Goral' Adamek 35-1 (24KOs), later this year. It is expected that the IBF will announce the date and location of the title fight within the week.
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