Monday, May 27, 2024  |


Lem’s latest: Sergio Martinez-Miguel Cotto officials announced

Fighters Network



Canada's Michael Griffin will be the referee; Max DeLuca of California, Tom Schreck of New York and Guido Cavalieri of Italy will be the judges for Saturday's bout between RING and WBC middleweight champion Sergio Martinez and three-division titlist Miguel Cotto at Madison Square Garden in New York City on HBO Pay-Per-View, WBC President Mauricio Sulaiman informed on Thursday.

Among more notable facts is DeLuca scored Martinez's last fight 115-112, as did  Alejandro Rochin and Nicolas Hidalgo, when Martinez rose from an eighth round knockdown to unanimously decision Martin Murray in April of 2013.



The handlers of RING heavyweight champion Wladimir Klitschko (62-3, 52 knockouts) and Kubrat Pulev (20-0, 11 KOs) must soon reach a deal for a fight in order to avoid a purse bid to take place on June 17, IBF Championships Chairman Lindsey Tucker informed on Thursday.

Tucker sent notifications ordering the commencement of negotiations last month to Sauerland Events, which promotes Pulev, and K2 Promotions, which has Klitschko. Another notice was sent out Wednesday concerning the purse bid, said Tucker.

The 6-foot-6 Klitschko, 38, made his 16th defense with last month's fifth-round knockout against Alex Leapai, whom he dropped once in the first round and twice in the fifth. Klitschko also holds the WBA and WBO titles.

The 6-foot-4 Pulev, 33, was last in the ring for his second consecutive stoppage victory, a third-round knockout of Ivica Perkovic in April.



Friday's scheduled show featuring South African cruiserweight Thabiso "The Rock" Mchunu (16-1, 11 KOs) against Brazilian Julio Cesar Dos Santos (26-2, 23 KOs) in Gauteng, South Africa, has been canceled, Main Events announced on Thursday.

A 26-year-old southpaw, Mchunu was last in action for a unanimous decision in January over Olanrewaju Durodola, who was after his ninth straight knockout win.

"This was arranged by his South African promoter and we're partners with him on Mchunu and this was a show fight that he arranged and we had nothing really to do with it other than trying to publicize him in the United States. All that they told us that for some reason, there was a third promoter in South Africa working the show who pulled out of it. We simply signed on it being a good fight for him and a great opportunity, so we said, 'Go ahead, do it,'" said Main Events CEO Kathy Duva.

"Damien Michael is our partner in South Africa with Mchunu and he worked with third promoter to arrange this fight. The way that our deal works is that we promote his fights here and Damien is responsible for the fights in South Africa. Of course we want to have a fight for him soon, although I don't have a place for him within the next month. We'll bring him back as quickly as we can. They're also trying to find a place for him quickly in South Africa.  Thabiso’s South African promoter is working to reschedule this as soon as possible."

Michael concurred.

"It is not an ideal situation when something like this happens at the last minute but unfortunately that is the nature of the boxing business in a third world country," said Michael.  "Now we are going to focus on returning to the United States to fight and winning a world title."


Tucker also said Chris Avalos (24-2, 18 KOs) is the mandatory challenger to the winner of a winner of the September 6 bout between IBF junior featherweight titleholder Kiko Martinez (31-4, 23 KOs) of Spain and Northern Ireland's Carl Frampton (18-0, 13 KOs).

Avalos of Lancaster, Calif., won an eliminator on May 31st by eighth-round stoppage over Yasutaka Ishimoto for the right to face either Martinez or Frampton.



WBO middleweight titleholder Peter Quillin and former two-division titleholder Paul Malignaggi have granted their stamps of approval to Oxnard, Calif.-based junior middleweight Hugo Centeno (20-0, 11 KOs) in advance of their training stablemate's clash with Gerardo "Tin Tin" Ibarra (14-0, 8 KOs) on Friday night on ShoBox: The New Generation from Fantasy Springs Resort Casino in Indio, Calif., live on Showtime at 10 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).

Like Quillin and Malignaggi, Centeno is trained by Eric Brown. Centeno sparred with Quillin in advance of Quillin's victories over ex-titleholder Winky Wright and Hassan N'Dam – both by unanimous decision – and Fernando Guerrero by sixth-round knockout. Quillin scored one, six, and four knockdowns against Wright, N'Dam and Guerrero, respectively.

"He helped me when a lot of guys didn't want to spar with me and helped give me the work that I needed to become a champ. He gave me great work. He's a very talented prospect and more than that, he has the whole 'Hugo Boss' persona going for him. You don't see many guys at that level like that," said Quillin in a release.

"He's building his name and putting himself out there. He’s very confident and talented as a contender. He has that mentality to become a champ and he comes and brings it every time I spar with him. He's the type of guy where I have to be worried that one day he can fight for my belt."

In his last fight on December 13, Centeno scored a 10th-round knockout of Angel Osuna at Fantasy Springs Resort Casino. Ibarra (14-0, 8 KOs) was last in action for a unanimous decision victory over William Johnson in February.

"He’s a solid prospect with a mature attitude and a good work ethic," said Malignaggi, also a Showtime boxing analyst. "He's a good fundamental boxer. It will be interesting to see his development as he faces tougher competition."

Having recently sparred with WBO 140-pound titleholder Ruslan Provodnikov, Centeno will be facing a late replacement as Ibarra stepped in when unbeaten Domonique Dolton was forced to withdraw with a hand injury that was suffered in training.

"I think the last-minute replacements are the most dangerous. You don't know much about them and they can throw you off your game," said Quillin. "You train for one guy during your entire training camp and then you have a completely different fighter in there with you. It's extremely dangerous."

In Friday's co-feature, junior middleweight Eddie Gomez (16-0, 10 KOs) fights Francisco Santana (19-3-1, 9 KOs).