GUILLERMO RIGONDEAUX-ROBERT MARROQUIN IN JEOPARDY
A planned bout featuring WBA junior featherweight beltholder and two-time Olympic gold medalist Guillermo Rigondeaux (10-0, 8 KOs) and Robert Marroquin (22-1, 15 KOs) could be in jeopardy following a Miami court’s decision to forbid Rigondeaux from participating because the bout was not approved by Rigondeaux’s Irish promoter, Gary Hyde.
Hyde contends that his contract has been in place with the fighter since he defected from Cuba in 2007. Top Rank had placed the bout on the undercard of Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. vs. Sergio Martinez on Sept. 15 with no contract, he says, and Top Rank scheduled the fight without his permission in spite of “lucrative offers” from other promoters.
“Gary Hyde has an existing management contract with Mr. Rigondeaux, and has had one for many years. It appears that the third parties interfered with that contract, and Mr. Rigondeaux, undoubtedly under bad advice that he was being given, was not honoring it. It appears that Top Rank was taking advantage of Rigondeaux by virtue of not having his management involved. Gary, therefore, was forced to go to court to enforce the management contract, which gives him the right to approve and negotiate all of Mr. Rigondeaux’s fights,” ,” said Pat English, Hyde’s attorney.
“The court held that Gary’s management contract literally meant what it said, and that no one could go around Gary in terms of negotiating fights for Mr. Rigondeaux, and the Sept. 15 fight was the first fight where Top Rank went around Gary. All of the other fights had beenn done through Gary. So the court enjoined Mr. Rigondeaux from participating in the Sept. 15 fight.”
Top Rank lawyer David Marroso, who is a senior attorney with the Los Angeles-based O’Melveny and Myers law firm, told RingTV.com that he just learned of the situation, had no comment as of yet, but is “reviewing the file.”
Rigondeaux is coming off June’s fifth-round knockout of Philadelphia’s Teon Kennedy (17-2-2, 7 KOs), whom he floored five times during a dominating performance on the undercard of Tim Bradley’s split-decision over Manny Pacquiao at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas.
Prior to facing Kennedy, Rigondeaux has scored first- and sixth-round knockouts over a pair of previously unbeaten fighters in Willie Casey and Rico Ramos in March of last year and January, respectively. Rigondeaux dethroned Ramos as WBA titleholder.
English contends that Hyde’s automatic two-year contract extension went into effect when the fighter defeated Ramos.
“Mr. Rigondeaux’s contract was extended with Gary when Rigondeaux won the championship. It was extended by two years. There are competing offers,” said English.
“But we don’t believe that Mr. Rigondeaux has been properly advised. What needs to be done is for Rigondeaux and Gary to be on the same page, as they were for a long period of time, and to make the best career decision. That may or may not involved the fight on Sept. 15 going forward.”
CHAVEZ JR. TO BE PROFILED ON HBO
WBC middleweight titleholder Chavez Jr. will be featured on HBO’s “2 Days: Julio Cesar Chavez Jr.” on Aug. 25 at 12:30 a.m. ET/PT in advance of his defense opposite RING champion Martinez that will take place on HBO Pay Per View from the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas.
The documentary will cover a 48-hour span in the life of Chavez Jr., the 26-year-old son of the former titleholder by the same name who has a mark of 46-0-1 that includes 32 knockouts, and is coming off a seventh-round stoppage victory over southpaw challenger Andy Lee (28-1, 20 KOs) in June.
Martinez, 37, has a record of 49-2-2 that includes 28 stoppage wins, and was last in the ring for an 11th-round knockout victory over Matthew Macklin (28-4, 19 KOs).
On the Chavez Jr.-Martinez undercard, two-time middleweight title challenger Macklin takes on Haitian-born Joachim Alcine (33-2-1, 19 KOs). In other bouts, Puerto Rican junior lightweight Roman “Rocky” Martinez (25-1-1, 16 KOs) will face Mexico’s Miguel Beltran Jr. (27-1, 17 KOs) for the WBO’s vacant belt, and Notre Dame graduate Mike Lee (10-0, 6 KOs), famous for his appearances in Subway commercials, will try to follow up his second-round knockout of Tyler Seever on Aug. 4.
ERISLANDY LARA TO FACE VANES MARTIROSYAN ON NOV. 10 MANNY PACQUIAO UNDERCARD
A WBC eliminator bout between unbeaten junior middleweight Vanes Martirosyan and southpaw former amateur world champion Erislandy Lara and “is done” and will take place on the Nov. 10 undercard of a fight involving eight-division titlewinner Pacquiao at The MGM Grand in Las Vegas, Golden Boy Promotions CEO Richard Schaefer confirmed on Tuesday.
Top Rank has out-bid Golden Boy Promotions for the right to handle the bout between Martirosyan (32-0, 20 KOs), whom that organizations promotes, and Lara (17-1-1, 11 KOs), who is handled by Golden Boy.
The winner of the bout between Lara and Martirosyan would become the mandatory challenger to face beltholder Saul “Canelo” Alvarez (40-0-1, 29 KOs), who is currently scheduled to face Josesito Lopez on Sept. 15.
Top Rank CEO Bob Arum had earlier informed RingTV.com that Lara-Martirosyan could land on either Top Rank’s Sept. 15 card featuring RING middleweight champion Sergio Martinez and WBC beltholder Julio Cesar Chavez Jr. or Pacquiao card.
TWO-HOUR HBO DOCUMENTARY ON THE UKRAINIAN ‘KLITSCHKO’ BROTHERS AIRS ON SEPT. 8
A two-hour documentary called “Klitschko” is slated to begin at 5:30 on HBO on Sept. 8 as it chronicles the lives of RING heavyweight champ Wladimir Klitschko, 36, and his 41-year-old brother, Vitali Klitschko.
Wladimir Klitschko (58-3, 51 KOs) will pursue his 17th straight victory and his 13th knockout during that run when he defends his IBF, WBA and WBO belts against Polish-born Mariusz Wach (27-0, 15 KOs), of North Bergen, N.J., on Nov. 10, according to Tom Loeffler of the Klitschko’s promotional company, K2 Promotions.
WBC titleholder Vitali Klitschko (44-2, 40 KOs) will be after his 13th straight win and his 10 stoppage victory during that run against Manuel Charr (21-0, 11 KOs) at Olympisky Sport Hall in Moscow on Sept. 8.
The domination of the Klitschko brothers has assured that no U.S.-born fighter has held a heavyweight crown since 2007, when Shannon Briggs briefly wore the WBO’s strap. In 2006, Hasim Rahman held the WBC belt while the IBF title was held by Chris Byrd. Puerto Rican-American John Ruiz, the first Latino to win a heavyweight belt, held the WBA title from 2001 to 2005.
The documentary will serve as the lead-in to an HBO-televised triple-header whose maine event features a clash of RING champions between light heavyweight titleholder Chad Dawson (31-1, 17 KOs) and super middleweight beltholder Andre Ward (25-0, 13 KOs), whose WBA and WBC crowns will be on the line from the Oracle Arena in Ward’s hometown of Oakland, Calif., on Sept. 8.
On the Ward-Dawson undercards, WBC lightweight beltholder Antonio DeMarco (27-2-1, 20 KOs) will make his third defense against John Molina (24-1, 19 KOs). Before DeMarco-Molina, HBO will televise the tape-delayed fight between Vitali Klitschko and Charr.
Actor Nick Cannon, host of America’s Got Talent, will be the official ring announcer for the Ward-Dawson show.
FORMER WBA JUNIOR MIDDLEWEIGHT TITLEHOLDER TRAVIS SIMMS ARRESTED
Southpaw former WBA junior middleweight titleholder Travis Simms (27-1, 20 KOs) was tased and arrested on Sunday and subsequently freed on a $1,000 bond on Monday in Norwalk, Conn., after police the ex-Connecticut city councilor yelled at officers and refused to leave a disturbance.
Simms, 41, who served two years on the Norwalk city council, faces charges including breach of peace after being among those who declined to leave a large disturbance involving the widow of his adopted brother.
Police have accused Simms of screaming at them and strongly resisting when they tried to handcuff him, forcing them to subdue him with a stun gun. Simms was also arrested in 2010 after authorities say he fought with his twin brother, left-hander Tarvis Simms, who is 27-1-1 with 11 KOs.
Travis won the belt with a fifth-round knockout of previously unbeaten Alejandro Garcia in December of 2003 and defended the crown twice before being dethroned by unanimous decision against Joachim Alcine in July of 2007.
JOSE PERALTA MAKES FOURTH APPEARANCE AT PRUDENTIAL CENTER
Dominican born junior welterweight Jose “Mangu” Peralta (9-1, 5 KOs), of Jersey City, will make his fourth appearance at Newark’s Prudential Center when he faces Christian Steele (3-4, 1 KO), of Staunton, Va., in a 6-rounder on Sept. 8.
“I don’t know about him, but I don’t really worry about it,” said Peralta. “I’m ready to fight any fighter. I’m in the gym every day. I’m ready. I’m ready for everything he has.”
Peralta-Steele is part of a show run by Main Events’ President Kathy Duva that will also feature former RING cruiserweight champion Steve Cunningham (24-4-2, 12 KOs), of Philadelphia, making his heavyweight debut opposite Jason Gavern (21-10-4, 10 KOs), of Harrisonburg, Va., on the undercard of a bout during which former light heavyweight and cruiserweight titleholder Tomasz Adamek (46-2, 28 KOs) meets journeyman Travis Walker (39-7-1, 31 KOs).
Having lived in his car when he first arrived in NJ, Peralta is grateful for the opportunities he has been given, which is evident by the desire shown in giving his fans a good show.
“I know I’m a good fighter. I come to fight, and that’s what the people want to see,” said Peralta. “The people come to see a fight, and that’s what I give to them. I don’t come to move around. I come to fight.”
Peralta has not lost in almost four years, and and looked sharp during June’s fourth-round stoppage of Dontre King.
“For each fight, I train harder, and harder, and harder. I have no limit. I’m thinking big. I want to be the best at 140,” said Peralta.
“I’m ready to fight him, and I’m ready to fight anybody. I want to give myself what I deserve. It’s my time. It’s Mangu time.”
In another bout on the card, rising Philadelphia heavyweight prospect Bryant Jennings (14-0, 6 KOs) will take on hard-punching Chris Koval (25-9, 18 KOs), of Youngstown, Oh.
Yet another fight on the card features junior lightweights Jerry Belmontes (16-0, 5 KOs), of Corpus Christi, Texas. against Dominican-born Joselito Collado (13-1, 3 KOs), of Jamaica, Queens, NY. Also, Philadelphia lightweight Karl Dargan (10-0, 5 KOs) takes on Brooklyn junior welterweight Shem Pagan (2-0, 1 KO) in separate bouts.
Doors open at 1:30 p.m., and the first bout is scheduled for 2 p.m. Starting at 3 p.m., the show will be on Wealth TV. Co-promoted by Ziggy Promotions, the show will also be televised in Poland on pay per view.
Photo by Chris Farina, Top Rank
Photo by fightwireimages.com
Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]