Wednesday, March 22, 2023  |



Lem’s latest: Fortuna-Franco, Cintron-Batista on Aug. 2


Javier Fortuna will face Luis Franco in a 10-round featherweight bout that will co-headline an Aug. 2 Friday Night Fights show that includes former welterweight titleholder Kermit Cintron against Jonathan Batista at the Buffalo Run Casino and Hotel in Miami, Ok., promoters Sampson Lewkowicz and Leon Margules of Warrior Boxing announced on Monday.

Fortuna (22-0, 16 knockouts) is coming off a 68-second knockout of Miguel “Mikol” Zamudio (25-1-1, 13 KOs) in April. Franco (11-1, 7 KOs) was last in the ring for a split-decision loss to Mauricio Javier Munoz last October.

“Fortuna vs. Franco looks like it could be an unforgettable fight. Fortuna is so strong it’s scary, and Franco is unbelievably fast with a great chin,” said Margules.

“It’s the irresistible force against the immovable object. Something’s got to give, and it’ll be a cliffhanger to see what happens. What we all already know is it’s going to be a fantastic fight.”

Cintron (33-5-2, 28 KOs) was last in the ring for a draw with Adrian Granados in March that had followed a fifth-round knockout loss to Saul “Canelo” Alvarez in November of 2011.

Batista (14-1, 7 KOs) is coming off a first-round stoppage win over Carlos Rodriguez in June that helped him to bounce back from a split-decision loss to Emmanuel Lartei Lartey in April.

“Kermit Cintron is looking to become a champion again, but he will not get past my guy, Batista. I have carefully put together a wave of boxers from the Dominican and they are all now coming of age,” said Lewkowicz.

“This victory over Cintron will be the first of many big name wins for Batista. They are both fearless fighters and it will almost surely be a war while it lasts.”


Three-division titlewinner Miguel Cotto will return to the ring on Oct. 5 on HBO either at Marlins Stadium in Miami or the Amway Center in Orlando against an opponent to be determined, and will be working with Fame trainer Freddie Roach.

But exactly where Cotto will spend his two months preparing for the fight has yet to be decided, according to his legal advisor, Gaby Penagaricano.

“We’re working with Freddie about it. Freddie was very gracious and he agreed to camp with us in Orlando, where Miguel normally trains, and he agreed to do it for the full camp — two months,” said Penagaricano.

“As of more lately, though, we’re considering training in Los Angeles, although nothing is set. Only because, if we can help Freddie, I know that he has some other fighters that are going to be training, in a similar time period, so if we’re able to help Freddie not to lose those clients, then why not? Of course we would help him. We’re working through that right now.”


Rachel Donaire isn’t quite sure what possessed her to leap from her poolside chair and hoist a drowning child from nearly six feet of water during a July 4th party, this, despite being due to give birth to her first child with former junior featherweight beltholder Nonito Donaire on July 21.

“Mothers instinct? Possibly. God’s intervention? Maybe a combination of both,” said Rachel Donaire, who, with Nonito, is expecting a son to be named Jarel Michael.

“All I know is the nine-months pregnant month me could not have done it on my own. I want to thank everyone for their thoughts and prayers. I believe anyone in my situation would have done the same and not hesitated.”

Rachel’s rescue was not without its repercussions: The soon-to-be mother experienced pain and stiffness in here abdomen and upper thigh from a strained ligament on her right side. But after a brief hospital visit and examination, Rachel Donaire was informed that “Baby J” was unharmed.

“I didn’t feel pain until later, when I think the adrenaline wore off,” said Rachel Donaire, who is taking Tylenol to handle the pain. “It hurt to even roll over in bed or even walk, so we went to ER. After monitoring, they said I just sprained a ligament. I’m guessing its from me  sitting up so fast.”

Rachel Donaire said that she reacted upon spotting the struggling son of one of the party-goers, being the first to enter the water.

“God was truly there that night because there was no way I moved the way I did without Him. I was sitting in a lounge position when I heard his mom screaming. She was 30 feet away with her daughter. Somehow, I got up without help from anyone, ran through three feet of knee-deep water, and then jumped into the pool to get him,” said Rachel Donaire.

“According to his mom, her son must have taken off his life jacket and gave it to his brother and went back in the pool. I didnt think, I just reacted…The other adults were about 30 feet away near…And besides, every second the boy was under the water was detrimental. He wasn’t splashing and getting some air, he was completely submerged.”

The boy “was shook up,” but otherwise, “just fine,” said Rachel Donaire


Former junior welterweight contender Brandon Rios will be led into the ring by talented Latino singer Luis Coronel against Manny Pacquiao in Macau, China on Nov. 23 (United States time; Nov. 24 in China).

Rios (31-1-1, 23 KOs) is coming off a close unanimous decision loss to Mike Alvarado in March that was a rematch of Rios’ seventh-round stoppage win over Alvarado last October. Both bouts were Fight-of-the-Year-caliber battles.

Pacquiao (54-5-2, 38 KOs) is attempting to rebound from consecutive losses, a disputed split-decision to WBO beltholder Tim Bradley last June and sixth-round knockout to Juan Manuel Marquez last December.



Lem Satterfield can be reached at [email protected]