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Sunday, July 31, 2011

Bay Area Fighters Go 1-1 at Olympic Trials, Give Their Reactions

Eros Correa, No. 3 light flyweight in the country
By Ryan Maquiñana


The Playback brings you exclusive coverage of our two Bay Area boxers as they fight for a shot to make the 2012 Olympic Team this weekend.


In the opening round of the U.S. Olympic Trials at Mobile, Ala., the Bay Area's two entrants went a combined 1-1. San Jose light flyweight Eros Correa had no problems overwhelming Norberto Torres of Orlando 30-14, while super heavyweight LaRon Mitchell of San Francisco's Ring of Fire Gym was edged out by top-seeded Lenroy Thompson of Kansas, 14-11.


The tournament is double-elimination, meaning that both fighters remain in contention. Correa heads to the winners' bracket, while Mitchell moves to the losers' bracket.


Correa broke down the victory over Torres.


"I just used my jab, and I got him with that right hand over and over again," Correa said. "I hit him with some good body shots and he got tired fast."


Now the recent 18-year-old Overfelt High graduate focuses his attention on Marco Rangel of Scottsdale, Ariz.


"Rangel’s a good fighter," Correa said, proudly representing the San Jose PAL. "He beat me last year by one point, but I thought I had won that. This time, I won’t let him get inside. I plan to stay on the outside and outbox him."


LaRon Mitchell, reigning silver medalist at U.S. Nationals


Mitchell reflected on the close loss to Thompson.


"I felt kind of flat," the 31-year-old S.F. State graduate said. "I wasn’t throwing combinations. I really didn’t get hit with nothing that hurt, but I felt like I was heavy. I weighed in at 252. He was just faster footspeed-wise."


Despite a stinging right hook and straight left hand that induced a standing-eight count of Thompson, in addition to the Kansas fighter getting docked a point for excessive holding, Mitchell found himself on the wrong end of the scorecards.


"I felt like he did win the fight, but with the deduction and standing-eight, I thought it was closer than that," Mitchell reflected. "I should’ve left no doubt, but tomorrow is a new day."


Tomorrow brings a new challenge in Donovan Dennis of Davenport, Iowa.


"Dennis is left handed, quick," Mitchell said. "He was in the World Series of Boxing for Miami. I got the rust off today, and I'm ready to go for tomorrow. I know I got a fight on my hands."

Friday, July 29, 2011

PHOTO: Andre Berto Spars in the Bay Area

Andre Berto spars Karim Mayfield at the Undisputed Boxing Gym in San Carlos, Calif., in preparation for his Sept. 3 HBO date against IBF welterweight champ Jan Zaveck. (CREDIT: Veronica Lynn Conte/SNAC)

Check out BoxingScene.com for exclusive video interviews with Andre and his entire team!

LINK: http://www.boxingscene.com/video-andre-berto-training-camp-footage-interview--42124

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Beltran to S.F., but does it make sense?

Is a 34-year-old Carlos Beltran worth ransacking the Giants' farm system? (AP)

It's been awhile since I've waxed philosophical on anything but boxing, but after learning the news that the Mets' Carlos Beltran will likely take the next flight to SFO, my eyes continued to scan the byline--for whom Brian Sabean would be giving up to acquire him.

It turns out the organization's top prospect, Single-A pitcher Zack Wheeler, would be packing his bags in such a scenario. He probably won't be the only one as center fielder Gary Brown has also been mentioned.

Of course, to the instant gratification crowd, the deal brings excitement. It's just what the doctor ordered for a team whose offensive production has been as futile as a Floyd Mayweather PR campaign. Ex-A's GM and current Met personnel chief Sandy Alderson has even reportedly offered to take on the bulk of Beltran's salary.

To me, however, this deal evokes thoughts of buyer beware. Let's break down the various ways the trade can play out for the Giants:

1. The Beltran of old emerges to fill the power void left by Buster Posey, the Giants return to the World Series, and Sabean looks like a genius regardless how good Wheeler turns out to be. Got it.

2. Beltran is marginally effective, the Giants win the division, and flame out in the postseason. In that case, do you still break the bank to keep him? Everyone remembers Carlos as Señor Octubre from his Ruthian run as a Rent-A-Star in Houston, but that was seven years, countless trips to the disabled list, and $119 million ago. He's also 34. On the other hand, taking away Brandon Belt (who is already with the club), the 21-year-old Wheeler is considered by Baseball America to be the best farmhand the Giants have left.

3. Beltran pulls a Shea Hillenbrand and plays so poorly he ends up spelling Nate Schierholtz and Andres Torres in the outfield come crunch time. Meanwhile, Wheeler shoots up to the Big Apple after the trade and becomes a Cy Young-caliber force in the game.

I've always subscribed to the theory that you should never trade the cream of your farm system for role players, especially with the panic that accompanies a mid-season swoon. This is obviously not the case in that Beltran is an All-Star talent and a difference-maker on any lineup. It also helps that having a rotation of six pitchers capable of winning double-digit games can a minor league hurler expendable.

But at any rate, if Beltran were to bolt next season, anything less than a National League pennant would be calamitous if Wheeler turned out be the second coming.

Ask the Red Sox if they would get rid of Jeff Bagwell again so that the Astros' Larry Andersen could solidify their bullpen for the stretch run. Or the Tigers if they would rather have kept John Smoltz instead of going for the gusto with then-Atlanta starter Doyle Alexander.

Or how about my all-time favorite, shipping Cliff Lee, Grady Sizemore, AND Brandon Phillips to Cleveland for half a season of Bartolo Colon (although to be fair, Expos GM Omar Minaya felt he had nothing to lose since Major League Baseball had legitimately threatened to contract the franchise at the time).

The difference between those teams and the Giants, however, is that none of them were defending a world title. Sabean has definitely earned himself the leeway to jettison Zack Wheeler for Carlos Beltran. Let's hope his latest roll of the dice comes out with that championship feeling.

S.F. Amateur Boxing Championships Results

Middleweight Ricardo Pinell, B Street Boxing (San Mateo)

By Ryan Maquiñana

In what the San Francisco Boxing Union hopes will be a more regular occurrence, the Roccapulco Supper Club in the Mission District hosted the first S.F. Amateur Boxing Championships last night.


An almost packed house witnessed 11 bouts of boxing where the ambience included Latin groove band Los Mocosos belting out tunes and the presence of past and present Bay Area boxing stars like Karim Mayfield, Jonathan Chicas, Ashanti Jordan, and Pat Lawlor.


“It was a great turnout between 400 and 500 fans, and the more shows we hold, the more our local fighters can build their craft and build a following,” founder Arturo Gastelum said. “We’ll be back September 13 at Roccapulco, and then October 27 at Longshoreman’s Hall in Fisherman’s Wharf.”


Mario Ayala (Don Conley, Sacramento) dec. Adrian Rodriguez (Phight Club, Oakland)

Featherweights


The night started with a dubious decision in favor of Ayala, who had his moments but was constantly beaten to the punch by Rodriguez.


Aside from a brief flurry in the second round where Ayala let loose with his foe on the ropes, the southpaw Rodriguez used his height disparity to his advantage throughout the bout, getting inside on the lanky Ayala and landing compact, more meaningful shots.


But of course, when my pencil hits paper, it doesn't go to USA Boxing for official results, and in this case, the judges thought Ayala deserved the victory.


“We know we won. Everybody saw it,” said Rodriguez’s trainer, Gilbert “Hurricane” Jackson.


Joel Lopez (3rd St. Boxing Club, San Francisco) RSC-2 Wahid Raza (Wrecking Crew Boxing Club)

Lightweights


Almost instantly, the orthodox Raza’s power was on display, flooring the southpaw Lopez with a one-two and momentarily wobbling him again before the close of the opening round.


Lopez turned the tide as the second began, throwing a whirlwind of punches that had Raza reeling into the ropes on more than one occasion. Raza found himself holding his opponent in order to weather the storm. Then Lopez struck gold, landing a big right hook that staggered Raza and led to a standing-eight count. As Raza attempted to recover, Lopez jumped on him, causing another standing-eight to be administered. The referee had seen enough by this time and waved it off at 1:50.


Raza spit his mouthguard onto the blue canvas in disgust, but the result was final.


“I had to come back. I used my signature punch, that right hook,” Lopez said. “After I hurt him that first time, I knew I was going to finish him there.”


Martin Avila (San Jose PAL, San Jose) dec. Andrew Moy (445 Boxing Club, San Francisco)

Featherweights


The fight had the makings of a slugfest, as the two combatants traded at will, but the southpaw Moy rode his solid right hook to victory. At least I thought so, until Avila was awarded the win by decision.


The southpaw Moy won the first round convincingly on the strength of his right jab and left cross, but the second was much closer due to the orthodox Avila’s overhand right and work inside. Still, Moy parried just enough punches, punctuated by his right hook, to outland Avila in my opinion.


Maybe watching the fight a second time will sway my opinion, but I doubt it. Avila hit Moy with some clear, effective shots, but I don't think they were sufficient in number and impact. Luckily for him, the judges disagreed.


“I thought I was breaking him down as the fight progressed, but that’s not my call to make,” Moy said.


Terry Fernandez (Phight Club, Oakland) RSC-1 Michael Fernandez (415 Boxing, San Francisco)

Middleweights


In a battle of fighters named Fernandez, Terry pulled off the upset on Michael, the reigning California PAL and Desert Showdown champion, with an explosive first-round stoppage.


The two were willing to exchange, and a short left and right uppercut from Michael connected and snapped Terry’s head back. Then just like that, it was over. After Michael committed a cardinal sin of leading with a left hook, a sledgehammer of an overhand right from Terry sent Michael to the canvas, leaving him unable to continue.


Official time was 1:40.


"I couldn't believe I knocked him out," Terry said. "It was easier than I thought, but when given the opportunity to throw a shot like that it can make it easier. I was excited and also relieved."


Mike Aguayo (Unattached) dec. Humberto Otoya (US Boxing, Hayward)

Junior Welterweights


The southpaw Aguayo traveled all the way from Tuscon, Ariz., to take the decision from Otoya.


Aguayo used a body attack in close quarters to score, while Otoya found a home for his left hook and looping right. Overall, Aguayo’s volume was enough in the judges’ eyes to win a close battle.


“It was really close, but I thought he pulled it out,” said Karl Sharrock, Aguayo’s cornerman. “I thought he took the first and third rounds.”


Erick Rodriguez (Club X, Santa Rosa) dec. Jesus Reyes (3rd St. Boxing, San Francisco)

Welterweights


In possibly the fight of the night, Rodriguez edged out the decision over a game Reyes.


The southpaw Rodriguez pressed the action early, with a right hook to the body and the straight left scoring early. But Reyes was not to be outdone, slinging a looping right hand that put Rodriguez into the ropes to close a furious first round.


Reyes turned on the heat in the second, going to the ribcage. But Rodriguez answered back with the one-two, and the war was on again. On the inside, Reyes found himself with his right foot forward and landed a right hook upstairs. Rodriguez returned fire with a lead left that landed three consecutive times. It was now Reyes’s turn and he flurried to end the frame.


Reyes opened the third with a lead left hook, and Rodriguez was more than happy to oblige him with a barrage of his own, landing two a double left hook as Reyes retreated on the backfoot. Reyes now swung wildly and left himself open to be picked apart. However, Rodriquez could not take advantage and let Reyes back into the round. But Reyes was noticeably tired, winging his shots as Rodriguez evaded them to the final bell.


“I noticed in the first round when I hit him with some body shots he started putting down his hands,” Rodriguez said. “I couldn’t finish him off, but I’m happy with the win.”


Irby Burnett (Weapons Factory, Fairfield) dec. Michael Davis (Richmond PAL, Richmond)

Heavyweights


Burnett, currently in the Air Force, outslugged Davis to the decision.


The shorter Davis was the early aggressor, coming forward while Burnett tried to catch him coming in. The end of the round turned into a crude brawl, as Burnett was somehow able to use his left arm to lock Davis in so he could club away with his right hand.


The second round was more of the same. While Burnett’s offensive output wasn’t pretty, as he often smothered his punches, they scored. Davis attempted to turn his foe and unleashed a combination of his own with Burnett on the ropes.


The third frame was a similar story. Every time Davis tried to initiate his offense, Burnett held him up on the inside, and it was the right strategy since the quicker Davis just could not string together any semblance of sustained offensive momentum. Burnett simply scored in spurts, and the judges’ choice was clear at the bell.


“Davis is the most elusive fighter I’ve ever met,” Burnett said. “This is the second time I’ve fought him, and he wasn’t easy. I picked my shots and kept coming forward.”


Joel Siapno (Kennel Boxing Club, San Leandro) dec. Dexter Bibbs (3rd St. Boxing Club, San Francisco)

Junior Middleweights


Aside from a slight hiccup in the third Siapno cruised to the decision win.


Siapno systematically wore Bibbs down in the first and second with combination punching downstairs and then to the head. It was in this second frame where Bibbs locked him up, seemingly tired, and Siapno countered with a right uppercut. At this point, Siapno wailed away at Bibbs’s body.


On shaky ground, Bibbs ate more clean combinations from Siapno to open the thid. While Bibbs retreated, Siapno pushed forward throwing a right uppercut that found its target. At this point, Siapno looked for the final blow, and another flurry led to a standing-eight count. Bibbs finally unleashed a salvo of his own moments later, landing a crushing right that sent Siapno’s sweat flying and resulted in a standing-eight. However, it was too little too late, and Siapno had his hand raised in victory.


“I felt like I was getting to him in the second,” Siapno said. “He got me clean in the third, but I did enough to win.”


Ricardo Pinell (B Street Boxing, San Mateo) dec. Yasir Mahmoud (Phight Club, Oakland)
Middleweights


With a raucous cheering section supporting their man, Pinell got the judges’ nod over Mahmoud to close last night’s festivities.


Pinell, a southpaw and California Golden Gloves finalist, opened the scoring with crisp combinations off the backfoot. The orthodox Mahmoud then threw a howtizer of a right hand that landed flush but did not noticeably damage Pinell. The San Mateo fighter then let his hands go to the delight of a pro-Pinell crowd, scoring on six or seven unanswered that definitely put him ahead as the round came to a close.


Mahmoud needed a strong second round to stay in the fight, and his corner pleaded for him to be first, so he scored off a one-two with Pinell on the ropes. The two traded and Mahmoud landed the hardest shot, a right over the top. But Pinell looked to counter, and connected with a right uppercut with his back against the ropes. He followed it up with a right hook followed by a short straight left that stopped Mahmoud in his tracks. Mahmoud led with a left hook and pushed Pinell on the ropes, but Pinell smothered the shots, slipping them and finding a home for his counter right hook.


The final round started with Mahmoud’s initial aggression. He pushed Pinell on the ropes and threw a looping right that found paydirt. Pinell pivoted out of the ropes. Mahmoud landed a with a short left and right hand, while Pinell continued to go with a right hook to the body. As Mahmoud began to tire, Pinell now jabbed and landed the straight left. The two locked arms and both landed solid shots. In the phone booth, Pinell landed two short rights while Mahmoud connected with a looping right to end a very spirited scrap that duly went the San Mateo fighter's way.


“It’s a good win but I still need to work on my conditioning,” Pinell said. “The right uppercuts and combinations were working but again, my conditioning could use a little work."


Mario Cabrera Jr. of Boxing Republic, one of the true fight fans of The City, contributed to this report, along with Kim Francesca Martinez of Leave-It-In-The-Ring.com.

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Mercito Gesta, Benavidez to Headline in Arizona Sept. 17

By Ryan Maquiñana
BoxingScene.com


A pair of young, unbeaten fighters will headline the latest edition of “Top Rank Live” on Sept. 17 at the BlueWater Casino in Parker, Ariz., when lightweight contender Mercito Gesta and junior welterweight prospect Jose Benavidez Jr. appear in separate bouts against opponents to be determined.


According to Top Rank matchmaker Bruce Trampler, the San Diego-based Gesta (22-0-1, 12 KOs) will return to the ring for the main event after the Filipino only needed three rounds to impressively stop Jorge Pimentel in his Top Rank debut last Saturday on the undercard of Brandon Rios vs. Urbano Antillon.


In the co-feature, Phoenix native Benavidez (12-0, 11 KOs) will look to build on the momentum of a fourth-round technical knockout of Corey Alarcon in nearby Chandler, Ariz., last month.


READ MORE: http://www.boxingscene.com/mercito-gesta-benavidez-headline-arizona-sept-17--41591

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Boxing Union Has Big Plans for S.F. Amateur Event on July 26

By Ryan Maquiñana

CSNBayArea.com


San Francisco was once the center of the boxing world, or as the historians of the day would christen it, “The Cradle of Fistic Stars.”


Before the turn of the 20th century, the Olympic Club produced professional heavyweight world champion “Gentleman” Jim Corbett and the first-ever Olympic heavyweight gold medalist, Samuel Berger.


In fact, Corbett fought “colored” heavyweight world champion Peter Jackson to a grueling 61-round standstill in 1891. Kezar Pavilion once hosted heavyweight champ Rocky Marciano’s penultimate fight in 1955, and Candlestick Park was the site seven years later when Dick Tiger defeated Gene Fullmer for the middleweight title. The locals sure loved their boxing.


But with the Giants’ arrival and Warriors’ subsequent exodus from the East Coast around that time, combined with the 49ers’ championship runs decades later, the sweet science got lost in the Golden Gate fog.


However, the newly formed Boxing Union has plans to return The City to pugilistic prominence on July 26 starting with its first USA Boxing-sanctioned event, the S.F. Amateur Boxing Championships.


“This is going to be a one-night introduction for the fans that we plan will become two regular shows a month culminating in a weekly tournament over 13 weight classes that we’ll hold in the summer and winter,” founder Arturo Gastelum said. “Our goal here is that we’re really trying to attract a wider audience and a bigger platform of competition so we can cultivate the next wave of stars from the Bay.”


READ MORE: http://www.csnbayarea.com/07/14/11/Boxing-Union-has-big-plans-for-SF-amateu/landing.html?blockID=541390

Diego Magdaleno and Alejandro Perez Sound Off

By Ryan Maquiñana
MaxBoxing.com

This Friday, Showtime celebrates a decade of airing “ShoBox: The New Generation,” which our own Steve Kim has called “the most consistent launching pad for future champions.”

Sure enough, a list of the show’s alumni reveals that a staggering 43 fighters have earned world titles after appearing on the series.

Its latest headliners hope this trend continues when unbeaten Diego “I’m-A-KO” Magdaleno defends his NABF super featherweight belt against dangerous veteran Alejandro “El Alacran” Perez at the Texas Station Casino in Las Vegas.

However, instead of giving you the standard one-dimensional feature article on one of the fighters, I picked both their brains for this particular piece to canvas their careers leading up to this point, their respective takes on each other, and the significance of the fight down the line.

READ MORE: http://www.maxboxing.com/news/promo-lead/diego-magdaleno-and-alejandro-perez-sound-off

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Manager of Brandon Rios Confirms Talks of Katsidis, Barrera, Vazquez as Next Foe

By Ryan Maquiñana

Las Vegas-based manager Cameron Dunkin confirmed via phone that three names have entered the discussion for WBA lightweight champ Brandon Rios's next foe.

"Right now, they've been talking about [Michael] Katsidis, [Marco Antonio] Barrera, and [Miguel] Vazquez, but nothing is set. We'll talk it over and see what the best move is," said Dunkin.

Dunkin also manages Timothy Bradley, Nonito Donaire, Mikey Garcia, and Kelly Pavlik among others. Rios is coming off an impressive third-round stoppage of Urbano Antillon on Showtime last Saturday.

"We develop fighters into champions, and Brandon's on his way to bigger things if he can stay focused, which I believe he's done since winning the title," he added.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Rios Wins War of Attrition with Antillon

By Ryan Maquiñana at ringside
MaxBoxing.com

CARSON, CABrandon Rios wasn’t going to take no for an answer.

In a splendid scrap that had “Fight of the Year” written all over it had it lasted longer, “Bam Bam” successfully defended his WBA lightweight title for the first time by flooring Southern California rival Urbano Antillon twice in a dynamic third-round stoppage.

“I said before this fight would come down to who could take a punch best. I was that guy. I knew I was going to win because I was younger and stronger,” said the 25-year-old Rios, whose hellacious pressure helped him run his record up to 28-0-1 (21). “I’ll fight anyone at 135. Give me all the big names. I want them all!”

Asked whom he’d like to encounter next in Spanish by TV Azteca ringside interviewer Marco Antonio Barrera, Rios looked right at him and asked, “Well?”

The future Hall-of-Famer replied, “You’ve improved a lot!”

Antillon descends to 28-3 (20).

READ MORE: http://www.maxboxing.com/news/main-lead/rios-wins-war-of-attrition-with-antillon

Friday, July 8, 2011

VIDEO: My Appearance on Chronicle Live!


I was fortunate enough to be on Chronicle Live last night where I helped Barry Tompkins interview Robert "The Ghost" Guerrero. Check it out!

WATCH: http://www.csnbayarea.com/pages/video?PID=hXWM2-oW4IzXfNRVDQUd4tl7croErOfZ_3rKPD

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Stakes high, Gilroy's Guerrero preps for Maidana (w/ Video)

Ryan Maquiñana
CSNBayArea.com

SAN JOSE -- Robert “The Ghost” Guerrero took the dais and emanated an aura of confidence. After all, he was in his backyard.

Heightened expectations became the theme for his Thursday press conference at HP Pavilion where the 28-year-old announced his Aug. 27 fight against Argentina’s Marcos “El Chino” Maidana.

Tickets for the HP Pavilion event, which will be handled by Golden Boy Promotions and televised on HBO, will go on sale Friday morning at 10 a.m. on Ticketmaster and at the HP Pavilion box office. Prices range from $26 to $252 for ringside seats.

“I’m aware of what could be ahead, and the possibilities are endless,” said Gilroy’s Guerrero (29-1-1, 18 KOs), who will be fighting in the light welterweight (140 pounds) division for the first time. “I just need to stay focused and the rest will take care of itself.”

Glenn Donaire Added to Guerrero-Maidana Undercard Aug. 27


By Ryan Maquiñana

Former world title challenger Glenn Donaire will fight on the Aug. 27 undercard of Marcos Maidana's WBA interim junior welterweight title defense, according to Golden Boy matchmaker Eric Gomez.

Donaire (17-4-1, 9 KOs), of San Leandro, Calif., had taken a break from boxing to support his family as a truck driver. Now, rejuvenated and training again at Kennel Boxing Gym with his father, Nonito Donaire Sr., he will return to the ring at the HP Pavilion in San Jose against an opponent to be determined.

Is Top Rank “Citing” on a Goldmine with Mercito Gesta?


By Ryan Maquiñana
MaxBoxing.com

Wearing the blazer was slightly more comfortable than grabbing the microphone on the dais.

In other words, neither endeavor was.

However, a lot has changed since the Mercito Gesta story was put on hold while the unbeaten lightweight mulled over promotional offers upon hitting the free agent market last March.

“It was my first press conference, so I was kind of nervous,” said the 23-year-old Gesta, 21-0-1 (11), who endured the inevitable experience of endless eyeballs after signing with Top Rank. “I think I’ll get used to all this attention one day but it feels good to know they believe in me.”

READ MORE: http://www.maxboxing.com/news/promo-lead/is-top-rank-citing-on-a-goldmine-with-mercito-gesta

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Guerrero-Maidana Presser in San Jose Tomorrow

By Ryan Maquiñana

Golden Boy will hold an official media-only press conference tomorrow to announce Marcos Maidana's first defense of his WBA interim light welterweight title against Robert Guerrero, which will take place at the same venue of the bout, HP Pavilion in San Jose.

Guerrero, from nearby Gilroy, will be moving up in weight to fight at 140 pounds for the first time. The winner would be the mandatory challenger to current regular WBA holder Amir Khan, who hopes to unify his title with IBF champ Zab Judah in Las Vegas three Saturdays from now.

Check out my report on CSNBayArea.com tomorrow along with a video exclusive with "The Ghost" following the presser.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

UK's Paul Truscott Dangled As Possible Gary Russell Jr. Opponent

PHOTO: Sean McDonough

By Ryan Maquiñana

I just got off the phone with Gary Russell Sr., the father and trainer of undefeated featherweight Gary Russell Jr. of Capitol Heights, Md. (16-0, 10 KOs). The 2008 Olympian's next opponent will most likely be former Commonwealth featherweight titlist Paul Truscott of Middlesbrough, U.K. (17-2, 2 KOs).

The fight will reportedly take place on the undercard of Amir Khan's WBA light middleweight title defense against Zab Judah at the Mandalay Bay in Las Vegas on July 23.

The 5'9'' Truscott will present a new test for Russell with his height and solid jab. Albeit against subpar competition, the Brit has reeled off four straight victories after incurring his second loss to John Simpson in 2009, who remains the only man to defeat him as a pro.

Russell is coming off of an impressive fourth-round knockout of Antonio Meza in Hidalgo, Tex., on June 17.

Friday, July 1, 2011

2012 Olympic Trials Projections and Preview

Rau'shee Warren
Ryan Maquiñana
MaxBoxing.com

The London Games are just around the corner, which means the U.S. Olympic Trials are lurking as well. This year’s festivities for the men will take place in Mobile, Ala., from July 31-Aug. 6 (The women don’t duke it out until next year).

To earn the right to participate in the Olympic Trials tournament, an American amateur must earn one of the eight spots afforded each weight class. Here’s the breakdown:

• The 2010 National PAL Champion (1)
• The 2011 National Golden Gloves Champion (1)
• The 2011 Armed Forces National Champion (1)
• The 2011 USA Boxing National Championships’ top four finishers (4)
• The 2011 Last Chance Qualifier Tournament Champion (1)

All of the aforementioned contests have been completed with the exception of the Last Chance Qualifier Tournament next week in Cincinnati (July 4-9).

After the fruitless debacle in Beijing where the 2008 team made history for the wrong reasons, is there a gold medalist in this group? We’ll find out in London but for now, here’s a comprehensive list of the fighters in each weight class who have already punched their tickets to Mobile. Of course, everything is subject to change.

READ MORE:
http://www.maxboxing.com/news/promo-lead/2012-olympic-trials-projections-and-preview