Vasyl Lomachenko, Miguel Marriaga make weight for Saturday’s bout

Vasyl Lomachenko, left, of Ukraine, punches Roman Martinez, of Puerto Rico, during the fourth round of a WBO junior lightweight title boxing match Saturday, June 11, 2016, in New York. Lomachenko stopped Martinez in the fifth round. (AP Photo/Frank Franklin II)

Vasyl Lomachenko, left, goes after Rocky Martinez during their super featherweight title fight in June 2016 at Madison Square Garden/Associated Press photo by Frank Franklin II


Champion Vasyl Lomachenko and challenger Miguel Marriaga on Friday successfully made weight for their super featherweight title fight Saturday at Microsoft Theater in Los Angeles (on ESPN).

Lomachenko weighed in at the 130-pound limit and Marriaga came in at 129.8.

Lomachenko (8-1, 6 KOs), of Ukraine, will be looking to make the third successful defense of the title he won with a fifth-round knockout of Rocky Martinez in June 2016. Marriaga, of Colombia, is 25-2 with 21 knockouts.

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Golden Boy Promotions announces multi-year deal with ESPN

                                In this June 26, 2014 photo, boxer Oscar De La Hoya talks with reporters in Sacramento, Calif.

Oscar De La Hoya/Associated Press file photo


Golden Boy Promotions on Thursday announced it has agreed to a multi-year deal with ESPN to televise cards on ESPN2 and ESPN Deportes. The first event of the series will take place March 23 at Fantasy Springs Casino in Indio.

Eighteen cards will be televised during the first year of the deal in English and Spanish, with affiliates in Latin America, Canada, the Carribean, Austrailia and parts of Asia getting in on the fun.

Oscar De La Hoya, chairman of Golden Boy, is stoked about the accord.

“ESPN is a flagship network with a history of showcasing and bringing audiences into the world of boxing, making this deal a natural fit for Golden Boy Promotions,” De La Hoya said in a statement. “Having worked with ESPN in the past, we know first-hand that its multiple TV and digital platforms represent a must-watch for casual and die-hard sports fans.”

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David Benavidez says he won’t take a victory over Denis Douglin for granted

David Benavidez

David Benavidez/Photo courtesy of Premier Boxing Champions


One might think that David Benavidez (15-0, 14 KOs) is a heavy favorite to defeat Denis Douglin (20-4, 13 KOs) in the super middleweight main event Friday at 2300 Arena in Philadelphia (on ESPN), based on their respective records.  But Benavidez is only 19, Douglin is a southpaw and the New Jersey native is much closer to home than Benavidez, of Phoenix, will be when they square off.

Benavidez won’t be taking Douglin lightly, though, and that’s the right attitude to take into any fight.

“This is going to be a tough fight,” Benavidez said. “I know Douglin is hungry to give me my first loss. He’s coming off three wins in a row, so I’m taking this fight very seriously. Being that he’s a southpaw, I’ll have to do some things a little different.  We worked on all that stuff in camp, so I know I’m going to be ready for anything he brings to the ring.”
It’s true that Douglin has won three in a row, by knockout. But the combined records of the three opponents was 44-64-7.


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David Benavidez will try to keep record unblemished against Denis Douglin

David Benavidez

David Benavidez/Photo courtesy of Premier Boxing Champions


Super middleweight David Benavidez has yet to crack the top 15 in the rankings, but at 15-0 with 14 knockouts, the 19-year-old from Phoenix could be knocking on that door.

Benavidez on Aug. 5 will try to continue his ascent when he takes on Denis Douglin (20-4, 13 KOs) in the 10-round main event from 2300 Arena in Philadelphia (on ESPN).

Benavidez is coming off a seventh-round TKO of then-undefeated Francy Ntetu on June 25. When he steps into the ring against Douglin, Benavidez will be only six weeks removed from that bout.

“We never stopped training after my last fight,” Benavidez said. “We went right back into camp and I’m already in fighting shape. Douglin is a tough southpaw. We’ll start looking at tape and see what kind of holes he has. I’ll start with the jab and break him down. We’re working hard toward bigger and bigger fights.”

Douglin, of Marlboro, N.J., is convinced he’ll hand Benavidez his first defeat.

“I plan on applying pressure and making Benavidez adjust to my style,” he said. “He’s a tall, strong fighter, but he doesn’t use his height. He’s one-dimensional, but he’s very good at what he does. He doesn’t have the experience to deal with my style. I am stepping in with an undefeated fighter, but he will leave the ring with a loss.”

Benavidez is 6-foot-2.

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Mario Barrios goes 12 boring rounds to win wide UD over Devis Boschiero

Mario Barrios

Mario Barrios/Photo courtesy of Premier Boxing Champions


Sometimes a fight that looks good on paper turns out to be a dud. That was the case Saturday when undefeated Mario Barrios of San Antonio took on Devis Boschiero of Italy in the 12-round super featherweight main event at Sun National Bank Center in Trenton, N.J.

The two gave fans 11 rounds of boredom before Barrios finally gave them something to shout about when he decked Boschiero in the final round.

Barrios (16-0) won by three scores of 120-107, but the booing throughout the bout seemed warranted as there was little in the way of real exchanges.

Boschiero (39-5-1) entered ranked No. 8 by one organization, the same of which had Barrios No. 12.

Barrios blamed Boschiero for the boring nature of the fight.

“It was pretty frustrating,” Barrios said. “I came out to put on a show for the fans and, unfortunately, it seemed like my opponent was just trying to survive. I can try to press the fight all I want, but if he doesn’t want to fight it’s not going to happen.”

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Jamel Herring bracing for biggest fight of his life – against Denis Shafikov

Jamel Herring

Jamel Herring/Photo courtesy of Premier Boxing Champions


Jamel Herring of Cincinnati is 15-0 with eight knockouts, but he is unranked. That makes his fight Saturday with ranked fighter Denis Shafikov in Reading, Pa., the biggest opportunity of his career to date.

The two will square off in the 10-round lightweight main event at Santander Arena (on ESPN).

“I have a great deal of respect for Shafikov,” said Herring, 30. “Tough guy, experienced, but he had his chance and it’s my time now. This is my toughest fight on paper, but I feel good. It’s my time to earn my respect.”
Shafikov, 31, is from Russia. He is 36-2-1 with 19 knockouts and is ranked as high as No. 9. To Herring, a victory over Shafikov could go a long way.
“I believe a win will open the doors for a world title,” Herring said. “In my mind, I am taking this fight as a world-title fight. That is how important this fight is and before the end of the year, I hope to get a crack at a world title.”
As for Shafikov, he has twice fought for world titles with no success. He wants another shot.
“I accepted this fight because a win gets us in line for big opportunities, including another shot at a world championship,” Shafikov said.
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It’s official: Chris Arreola and Bermane Stiverne for heavyweight title at Galen Center

Although we reported this on Friday, Goossen Tutor Promotions on Monday made it official by announcing that the heavyweight title fight between Chris Arreola of Riverside and Bermane Stiverne of Miami will take place May 10 at USC’s Galen Center. It will be televised by ESPN.

Arreola (36-3, 31 KOs) and Stiverne (23-1-1, 20 KOs) will fight for the belt vacated by Vitali Klitschko, who relinquished the title so he can concentrate on his political career in his native Ukraine.

“Vitali was a great champion, in and out of the ring, and the winner of this fight will have big shoes to fill wearing the green belt around their waist,” said Dan Goossen, Arreola’s promoter. “Chris will definitely be going into this fight with his back against the wall. It’s that type of do-or-die situation I believe when he’s the most motivated and dangerous.”

Arreola and Stiverne have already tangled once, with Stiverne winning a wide unanimous decision over Arreola this past April at Citizens Business Bank Arena in Ontario.


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Vanes Martirosyan defeats Mario Alberto Lozano in first start for Goossen Tutor

Junior middleweight contender Vanes Martirosyan of Glendale kept alive his hopes for another shot at a world title by winning a wide 10-round decision over Mario Alberto Lozano of Mexico on Friday in the main event at Morongo Casino Resort in Cabazon. The Goossen Tutor Promotions card was televised on ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights.”

Martirosyan (34-1-1, 21 KOs) decked Lozano (28-5, 22 KOs) with a right hand in the second round. Martirosyan won by three scores of 100-89. It was Martirosyan’s first fight under the Goossen Tutor Promotions banner.

Martirosyan’s lone defeat came in his previous fight, when he lost a split-decision to Demetrius Andrade in a world-title fight in November.

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Venue for Chris Arreola-Bermane Stiverne to be announced on FNF; could be Galen Center

Henry Ramirez, trainer for heavyweight contender Chris Arreola of Riverside, tweeted Friday that he will be interviewed on ESPN2’s Friday Night Fights from Morongo Casino in Cabazon and that an announcement will be made regarding the venue for the May 10 heavyweight title fight between Arreola and Bermane Stiverne.

We’re not sure how true this is, but we heard a rumor from a source that says the site will be USC’s Galen Center. One thing’s certain, the fight will be televised by ESPN.

Arreola and Stiverne will fight for the belt vacated by Vitali Klitschko.

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‘No Mas’ to premiere tonight at 5 on ESPN

“No Mas,” a documentary chronicling the two 1980 welterweight title fights between Roberto Duran and Sugar Ray Leonard, will premiere tonight at 5 (Pacific time) on ESPN.

Duran won their first bout via 15-round decision June 20, 1980 in Montreal. Five months later, on Nov. 25 in New Orelans, Leonard won via 8th-round TKO when Duran quit, saying “No mas.”

This documentary, by Emmy award-winning  director Eric Drath, will air as part of ESPN’s “30 for 30” series.

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