JOSE RAMÍREZ VS. AMIR IMAM AT MSG THEATER ON MARCH 17th

BLARNEY ALERT!

BOB ARUM AND DON KING RESUME RIVALRY

WITH ST. PATRICK’S DAY BOXING SPECTACULAR!

JOSE RAMÍREZ VS. AMIR IMAM

FOR THE WBC SUPER LIGHTWEIGHT WORLD TITLE

AND

OLEKSANDR GVOZDYK VS. MEHDI AMAR

FOR THE INTERIM WBC LIGHT HEAVYWEIGHT WORLD TITLE

PLUS,

THE RETURN OF

IRISH OLYMPIC HERO MICHAEL CONLAN

Saturday, March 17, at the “O’Mecca of Boxing,”

The Theater at Madison Square Garden

Live on ESPN, ESPN Deportes, and the ESPN App

Tickets Go on Sale Tomorrow!

Thursday, Feb. 8, at Noon EST

NEW YORK – Hall of Fame promoters Bob Arum and Don King will resume one of boxing’s fiercest rivalries when the fighters they respectively guide — top-rated contenders JOSE RAMÍREZ and AMIR “Young Man” IMAM — collide for the vacant World Boxing Council (WBC) Super Lightweight world title.

Ramirez vs. Imam will headline a spectacular St. Patrick’s Day world title extravaganza, Saturday, March 17, at the “O’Mecca of Boxing,” The Theater at Madison Square Garden. The Ramirez – Imam world championship event will be televised live and exclusively at 8 p.m. ET on ESPN, and ESPN Deportes and stream live on the ESPN App at 5:30 p.m. ET.

Promoted by Top Rank®, and Don King Productions, in association with Madison Square Garden. Tickets to the Ramirez-Imam world championship event will go on sale tomorrow, Thursday, February 8, at Noon EST. Tickets priced at $206, $156, $106, $81, $56 and $31, can be purchased at the Madison Square Garden Box Office, all Ticketmaster outlets, Ticketmaster charge by phone (866-858-0008<tel:(866)%20858-0008>), and online at www.ticketmaster.com<https://TopRank.us17.list-manage.com/track/click?u=aa1ae9f9e3c18dcf7df10dda1&id=b690898271&e=60c3b0bfff> and www.MSG.com<https://TopRank.us17.list-manage.com/track/click?u=aa1ae9f9e3c18dcf7df10dda1&id=204a7c8016&e=60c3b0bfff>.

Ramirez, (21-0, 16 KOs), from Avenal, Calif., an amateur standout and a 2012 U.S. Olympian, is known as much for what he does outside the ring as he does inside the ring. In both instances, he is a fierce fighter. Inside the ring, Jose has stopped 76% of the opponents he has faced, including previously undefeated Top-10 contender MIKE “Yes Indeed” REED, who needed to be rescued in the second round by the referee on November 11. It was the fourth consecutive knockout victory for Ramirez and the eighth in his last ten bouts. Outside the ring, Ramirez has been a tireless advocate for farmers of the Central Valley in California, known as the breadbasket of the U.S. Ramirez, a child of pickers and who spent many summers doing the same 10-hour shifts under the blazing sun, has been fighting for the farmers’ water rights for years. With many of his Fight For Water boxing events in the Fresno area benefitting the California Latino Water Coalition, it’s no wonder Ramirez, world-rated No. 3 by the WBC, has consistently broken his own boxing attendance records in the area’s most prominent Arenas.

“I’m honored for the opportunity to be able to fight for a world title. Since I was only eight years old, with a few amateur victories under my belt, I started dreaming of becoming a world champion. To have that green and gold belt like all the best fighters in history have. I’m living my dream,” said Ramirez. “I’m ready to work as hard as it takes, to overcome any obstacle and adversity that comes my way. I’ve sacrificed, worked, and challenged myself in a way most can’t imagine.  Physically and mentally I’ll be more than ready come March 17th.  I started drawing this picture 17 years ago, and I almost have it completed.”

Imam, (21-1, 18 KOs), who is a proud New Yorker, also comes from a strong amateur background. And like Ramirez rarely leaves a fight’s result in the hands of the judges.  Imam boasts a victory by knockout ratio of 86%, including his last three and five of his previous seven. Imam said it best when it comes to his impressive number of stoppage victories, “I take care of business because you don’t get paid extra for overtime.”  Known for his superior boxing skills and movement and excellent punching power, Imam enters this fight world-rated No. 1 by the WBC.

“I’ll have a really good opponent in front of me, and it’s going to be a good fight,” said Imam.  “Fighting at Madison Square Garden, where I come from is a big thing, and it is a dream come true. I’m looking forward to it, and I’m working hard. I was ringside in Fresno for Jose’s last fight, so I know what he brings to the table.  I know what I’ve got to do to win this belt. This fight will be a clash of two fighters with a lot of knockouts, and it will come down to who can stand up to that leather.  If he does come straight forward, I will box and break him down and stop him. I’m not going to call for a knockout, but if it comes within itself, I am going to take advantage of it. Either way, I will leave that ring with the W.”

“Jose has worked hard to earn his world title shot and I know he and trainer Freddie Roach will come out blazing and give the fans at The Garden and those watching on all the ESPN platforms a night they will remember,” said Arum.  “Jose has been a longtime advocate of the Central Valley farmers, fighting for their water rights.  On March 17, I am confident he will become their first world champion boxer.  The card will also feature the return of Michael Conlan. In just 12 months, he has made St. Patrick’s Day his date and The Garden his second home. I am confident that he will become one of its biggest box office attractions. This world championship event will feature exciting fights from top to bottom which I look forward to announcing soon.”

The fight between Ramirez and Imam will mark the first time Arum and King have battled each other promotionally on the same card since Miguel Cotto defended his World Boxing Association (WBA) Super Welterweight world title on March 12, 2011, stopping former world champion Ricardo Mayorga in the 12th-round.

“This is going to be a great fight. A fantastic fight and I know Amir is training hard to come in at his best because he wants that belt,” said King.

“Jose was so pumped up in his last fight when he destroyed unbeaten Mike Reed, a legitimate Top-10 contender,” said World-Famous Freddie Roach, Ramirez’s trainer.  “He knew this title shot was at stake and he destroyed Reed.  He will be ready to give it his all on March 17.  What could be better than to win the WBC’s green belt on St. Patrick’s Day by driving Imam out of The Garden?”

“This is it, Madison Square Garden, the main event, ESPN’s flagship network in prime time for that coveted green belt.  It’s Jose’s time to show the world a real star has arrived as the complete package, and that is something boxing has needed for a long time.  “Jose has worked a lifetime to show everyone what I already know.  The curtain rises on the Jose Ramirez Show on March 17th,” said Ramirez’s manager, Rick Mirigian.

“This is a big fight, a serious fight and we are going to be ready,” said Stacey McKinley, Imam’s head trainer, and manager. “We know what we are up against, Jose Ramirez is an Olympian, an undefeated fighter and he has a big following.  He’s tall, he’s quick, and he throws a lot of punches. We certainly are not taking him lightly. His last fight against Michael Reed, Jose bombed him out like he bombed out the rest of them out.  But Johnny Garcia fought Ramirez tough and went the distance. Amir carried Garcia until the fourth round just to get some work in.”

The world championship card will also feature a battle for the Interim WBC Light Heavyweight title between unbeaten Ukrainian contender OLEKSANDR ‘The Nail’ GVOZDYK and French top-rated contender MEHDI AMAR.

Gvozdyk (14-0, 12 KOs), a former Olympic medalist from Kharkiv, Ukraine, enters this fight having won 12 of his last 14 matches by knockout, including all four of his NABF light heavyweight title fights. Gvozdyk is riding an eight-bout knockout-winning streak.

“I can explode with excitement with how happy I am right now. Seeing a bright light at the end of the tunnel, means I’m getting one a step closer to a world title shot, said Gvozdyk. “Fighting for the Interim title and mandatory spot will put me in position to challenge whoever the champion will be at that time. I would like to thank the WBC for giving me this opportunity, my promoter Top Rank, my manager Egis Klimas, all my team that has worked hard to get me to this position. I want to give special thanks to ESPN who will feature my fight and my performance in front of a massive audience. My dream is slowly coming through; I’m also excited to fight in Madison Square Garden, New York, The Mecca of Boxing. As far as my opponent, I don’t know much about him, but I’m ready to find out on March 17th.

“I’m very happy for Oleksandr because he is getting this WBC interim world title opportunity,” said Gvozdyk’s manager, Egis Klimas. “He is a step closer to be the mandatory challenger and to get in position to become a world champion in his next fight after March 17th. He is a hardworking and smart boxer, and he very well deserves to be where he is now.”

Amar (34-5-2, 16 KO’s) from Marseille, France, will make his United States debut when he battles Gvozdyk for the Interim WBC Light Heavyweight title. His fight against Gvozdyk will be his third outside of his native France.

The event will also mark the 2018 debut of Irish Olympic hero and The Garden’s fistic fan favorite MICHAEL “MICK” CONLAN in a six-round featherweight bout. Conlan (5-0, 4 KOs), of Belfast, made his pro debut on St. Patrick’s Day 2017, headlining and selling out The Theater at Madison Square Garden. On that historic night, Conlan was escorted into the ring by fellow countryman and UFC superstar Conor McGregor. The night was both memorable and exciting.

Conlan (5-0, 4 KO’s), from Belfast, Ireland, begins his sophomore professional year exactly where he started his freshman year — at The Garden. Conlan has steadily improved throughout his short professional tenure. His popularity has carried over to every city he has fought. A former amateur standout who was a 2012 Olympic Bronze medalist and 2015 World Amateur Champion — a first for a male Irish fighter. Conlan, who regularly sparred over the past year with world champion fighters Oscar Valdez and Jessie Magdaleno, now trains in the United Kingdom with Adam Booth.

“I’m looking forward to another fantastic night of boxing in The Theatre at Madison Square Garden!  It will be exactly one year to the day since my professional debut in the Mecca of Boxing. I’m excited and ready to put on a great show for my amazing fans,” said Conlan.  “I know, like last year, thousands are traveling over from Ireland to support me for which I’m hugely grateful.  There is only one place to be on St. Patrick’s Day this year, and that is The Garden, and if you cannot make it, be sure to catch it live on ESPN or any of its platforms!”

Lamourt Means Business

By Damon “Latinbox” Gonzalez

Tampa, Florida – Lightweight Evander Lamourt (2-1, 1 KO) @evander_24 a brilliant boxer-puncher in your face style fighter with a blend of sharp counterpunching, controlled power, head-shifting defense prowess, and his refined sense of time and distance.

Lamourt returns to the ring on Fight Night Promotions returns on Friday March 9th at the Bryan Glazer JCC Center in Tampa, Florida with a action packed line up.

Welterweight Mark Reyes, Jr. from Tampa, Florida @officialmarkreyesjr in action also Jasmin Artega, @_animal_boxing_ Ramon De La Paz, Evander Lamourt, @evander_24 Rafael Rivera, and pro debut Juan Avila. All bouts are subject to change. @frontproofmedia @sidestepboxing

REGIS PROGRAIS TO FACE FORMER CHAMP VIKTOR POSTOL FOR WBC 140-POUND INTERIM TITLE FRIDAY, MARCH 9 LIVE ON SHOWTIME

Ivan Baranchyk To Meet Fellow-Unbeaten Anthony Yigit In IBF Junior Welterweight Title Eliminator

SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION Live At 10 p.m. ET/PT From Deadwood Mountain Grand in Deadwood, South Dakota

NEW YORK – Undefeated 140-pound contender Regis Prograis and former world champion Viktor Postol will face off for the vacant WBC Super Lightweight World Championship on Friday, March 9 in the 12-round main event of SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION live on SHOWTIME at 10 p.m. ET/PT from Deadwood Mountain Grand in Deadwood, South Dakota.

Prograis (20-0, 17 KOs), of Houston by way of New Orleans, has scored knockouts in 13 of his last 14 fights and is a rising star in the wide-open 140-pound division. The aggressive-minded southpaw will face the toughest test of his career in Postol, a former WBC Super Lightweight World Champion with only one loss on his record.

In the 12-round co-feature, undefeated 140-pound contenders Ivan Baranchyk (17-0, 10 KOs) and Anthony Yigit (21-0-1, 7 KOs) will square off in a Junior Welterweight World Title Eliminator to become the mandatory challenger for IBF champion Sergey Lipinets. Lipinets will defend his belt the following day, March 10, on SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® against undefeated three-division champion Mikey Garcia.

The event is presented by DiBella Entertainment, in association with Elite Boxing, Fight Promotions Inc., Holden Productions and Sauerland Promotions. Tickets, priced at $200, $80 and $60, go on sale Friday, Feb. 9, and can be purchased on Ticketmaster.com or by calling (877) 907-4726.

“I feel I’m one of the best junior welterweights in the world and this is my chance to display my belief in myself,” Prograis said. “I’m very excited to be fighting Viktor Postol – he’s a very experienced fighter that previously held the WBC world title. I want to become a world champion this year, and I know Viktor Postol wants to reclaim his title, but we have to go through each other first. This is a great fight for boxing because you have two hungry fighters. It’s a can’t-miss fight.”

“My goal is to become a world champion again and I know a win over Regis Prograis will bring me one step closer,” Postol said. “I have been training hard for the past couple of months and I’m very excited for the opportunity to face Prograis on March 9.

“My next fight is very important for my career and I am preparing for it very seriously,” Baranchyk said. “A few months ago, I moved to Miami, Fla., where I am now being trained by Pedro Diaz. I have strict discipline for everything in my training. I’m working on improving my skills, tactics for the fight, my skill set and physical strength. I’m also maintaining a much stricter diet and eating very healthy. I want every fighter to know if I am in the boxing ring you will never have an easy fight with me.”

“My dream is to become a world champion and I need to defeat Baranchyk to continue on my path,” Yigit said. “This will be my first time fighting in the United States but I’m ready to show the boxing fans that I have what it takes to become a world champion. From Stockholm, Sweden to Deadwood, South Dakota, onward my journey continues.”

“Two excellent super lightweight matchups highlight this SHOWTIME BOXING: SPECIAL EDITION on March 9. At the Deadwood Mountain Grand in South Dakota, the rising young gun will duel the seasoned ex-champion,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “Regis ‘Rougarou’ Prograis can earn a world championship by beating his toughest foe, the respected and formidable Viktor Postol, with the interim WBC title at stake. Undefeated puncher Ivan Baranchyk is truly ‘The Beast’ in the ring and is determined to blaze a path toward a world title shot in his IBF eliminator, taking on Sweden’s European Champion, former Olympian, Anthony ‘Can You Dig It?’ Yigit.”

“Prograis and Baranchyk have appeared a combined nine times on ShoBox: The New Generation and it’s fulfilling to see their development from talented prospects to legitimate contenders,” said Gordon Hall, ShoBox Executive Producer and SVP Production, SHOWTIME Sports. “We view this progression as a validation for the ShoBox series, and we’re thrilled to see their hard work pay off with these potentially career-changing opportunities. These are two tough fights that will determine who is ready to take the next step in this exciting division.”

“We are thrilled that DiBella Entertainment is bringing big time boxing back to South Dakota,” said Susan Kightlinger, General Manager at Deadwood Mountain Grand. “Deadwood is renowned for its rough and tumble past and professional boxing fits that mold perfectly. It’s an amazing card, great fighters and SHOWTIME is the ultimate name in boxing. It’s a perfect fit!”

A consensus top-10 ranked fighter at 140 pounds, the 29-year-old Prograis has beaten three previously undefeated fighters on the SHOWTIME developmental series ShoBox: The New Generation. Prograis stamped his arrival as a legitimate contender in the 140-pound division on June 9 scoring four knockdowns of previously undefeated Joel Diaz Jr., en route to a second-round TKO. Following the fight, Prograis called out the top players in the 140-pound division, including Terence Crawford and Adrien Broner, and on March 9, he’ll get his first chance to prove he’s ready to face the division’s elite.

Prograis’ nickname “Rougarou” originates from Louisiana folklore and is defined as a werewolf-like creature. Originally from New Orleans, Prograis relocated to Houston following Hurricane Katrina.

Postol won the vacant WBC 140-pound World Championship with a stunning and dominating 10th round knockout of Lucas Matthysse in 2015. The 34-year-old Ukrainian attempted to unify the division in his first defense, losing via unanimous decision to then-WBO champion Terence Crawford in 2016. He has since bounced back with a win over previously unbeaten Jamshidbek Najmiddinov last September in his native Ukraine. A win would move him one step closer to earning back the coveted WBC title he lost.

The co-feature also pits two of the top prospects in the 140-pound division, each with an opportunity to score the biggest win of their respective careers.

The aggressive-minded Baranchyk is a former amateur standout that packs power in both hands. The 25-year-old native of Belarus is currently ranked No. 4 in the IBF at 140 pounds and owns seven wins over previously undefeated fighters. He’s gone the 10-round distance three times and is coming off an eight-round unanimous decision over then-undefeated Keenan Smith last July on ShoBox in his adopted hometown of Miami, Okla.

The 26-year-old Yigit competed in the 2012 Olympics for Sweden, advancing to the second round before losing a very narrow decision to eventual Silver Medalist Denys Berinchyk. The Stockholm native has tallied 21 victories in just four years following the Olympics while campaigning in Europe. The southpaw will make his U.S. debut against Baranchyk as he looks to prove he’s ready to contend on the world stage.

Keith Thurman Training Camp Begins

@keithonetimethurman Training Camp Begins at St. Pete Boxing Club. #YouMad

@keithonetimethurman May 19: Thurman Defends Worlds Titles – From Barclays Center in Brooklyn

Keith Thurman is the only unified 147-pound world champion and the consensus No. 1-ranked fighter in boxing’s preeminent weight division. The undefeated Thurman(28-0, 22 KOs) has held the WBA title since 2015. He claimed the WBC belt with a decisive win over previously undefeated Danny Garcia last March in the most watched bout of the year, a presentation of SHOWTIME Boxing on CBS. Following an elbow injury that required surgery, Thurman will return to action against an opponent.

Photos from Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

@showtimeboxing @shosports @premierboxing @coronaboxing @brooklyn_boxing @barclayscenter @steeltownfreak

Broadway Boxing Is Back Feb 7

@dibellaent

CROSSTOWN RIVALS NOEL MURPHY AND MIKKEL LESPIERRE

FIGHT FOR WBC-USNBC WELTERWEIGHT TITLE

IN BROADWAY BOXING MAIN EVENT

B.B. KING BLUES CLUB & GRILL, NEW YORK, NY

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 7

FULL CARD STREAMING LIVE ON FACEBOOK STARTING AT 7:00 P.M. ET

NEW YORK CITY – Local undefeated crosstown rivals NOEL MURPHY (12-0, 2 KOs), of Woodlawn, New York, and Brooklyn’s MIKKEL LESPIERRE (18-0-1, 8 KOs) will clash in a 10-round welterweight bout for the vacant World Boxing Council – United States National Boxing Council (WBC USNBC) title in the main event this Wednesday night, February 7, on DIBELLA ENTERTAINMENT’s next installment of the acclaimed BROADWAY BOXING series at B.B. King Blues Club and Grill, in Times Square, New York. @loudibella @bbkingbluesnyc #BroadwayBoxing

@woodsy1069 @nyfights

Berchelt Hits Cancun

@alacranbercheltoficial In Cancun 🇲🇽

@wbcboxing Champion Miguel “El Alacran” Berchelt (32-1, 28 KO’s) @alacranbercheltoficial prepared for war come this Saturday February 10th against Maxwell Awuku They will collide at the Plaza de Toros, Cancun, MX. for the WBC World Super Featherweight Title.

@wbcboxing @wbcmoro @wbcgreenbelt @ppsulaiman @nancyr505 @cancundotcom

Photo credits: @alacranbercheltoficial 🇲🇽🥊

Ramirez Stops Ahmed In Six by TKO

By Damon Gonzalez

Photo credits: Mikey Williams- Top Rank

Super Middleweight Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez (37-0, 25 KO’s) over powers and beats down Habib Ahmed (22-1-1, 17 KO’s) as his corner seen enough the fight was stopped at the official time of 2:31 seconds round six by TKO victory.

It was simply art work as IBF Jr. Bantamweight champion Jerwin Ancajas (26-1-1, 18 KO’s) catches tough Israel Gonzalez (20-2, 8 KO’s) on the bullseye with a hard right hand that ends Gonzalez night at the official time of 1:56 seconds of round ten by ways of TKO victory.

Super Welterweight David Kaminsky (1-0) from Netanya, Israel in his pro debut scores a one-sided unanimous decision victory over Rafael Munoz (1-3-1). Judges official scores 39-37 x 2, 39-36.

Super lightweight champion Jose Benavidez Jr. (26-0, 17 KOs) scores an eight round TKO over Matthew Strode (24-6, 9 KOs).

17 yr old Super Featherweight Gabriel Flores, Jr. (6-0, 5 KO’s) @g_squad_nation stops Alex Solorio (4-3, 1 KO) by KO victory in round five.

Super Middleweight Jesse Hart (23-1, 19 KOs) from Philadelphia, PA. destroyed Thomas Awimbono (24-8-1, 20 KOs) in the first round at 1:28 seconds by TKO on Saturday night at the American Bank Center in Corpus Christi, Texas.

lightweight prospect Teofimo Lopez (8-0, 6 KOs) scored a six round unanimous decision over late sub Juan Pablo Sanchez (30-15, 14 KOs). Scores were 60-54, 60-54, 59-55.

RONALD ELLIS & JUNIOR YOUNAN FIGHT TO A SPLIT DRAW IN THE MAIN EVENT OF SHOBOX: THE NEW GENERATION FRIDAY ON SHOWTIME® FROM WINNAVEGAS CASINO RESORT IN SLOAN, IOWA

Photo Credit Amanda Westcott/SHOWTIME

SLOAN, IOWA – Undefeated super middleweight prospects Ronald Ellis and Junior Younan fought to a split draw in the main event of ShoBox: The New Generation Friday on SHOWTIME from WinnaVegas Casino Resort in Sloan, Iowa.

While Ellis was the ShoBox veteran with the stronger resume, Younan entered the fight as a highly touted prospect who had never been tested. He faced his first test on Friday in what was the first scheduled 10-round bout for both fighters.

The fight was fought in flurries, with Younan scoring from the outside and Ellis the aggressor. Except for the eighth round where Brooklyn’s Younan displayed his best work, Ellis seemed to push the action and win the second half of the fight. Ellis had a slight edge in power punch percentage and total punches, but Younan was slightly more accurate. The fighters were even with 96 total connects entering the 10th round, but Ellis (14-0-2, 10 KOs) won the 10th on all three judges’ scorecards by out-landing Younan 21-9.

The 10-round fight was scored 96-94 Ellis, 96-94 Younan, and 95-95.

“I thought I pulled it out. I closed the show at the end,” said Ellis, of Lynn, Mass. “I was pressuring him and the fans know I won. In the eighth, he landed a couple of shots but he wasted his energy. As you saw, he didn’t do anything the rest of that round, and after that round he had nothing left.

“He was running from the start, so I knew I could land shots on him anytime. My only regret is I wish that I got him out of there. It’s all knockouts from here on out. I would definitely fight him again, but I’ll do whatever my promoter lines up for me.”

After the fight, an emotional Younan (13-0-1, 9 KOs) pleaded his case for a rematch.

“I thought I won the fight, I thought [Ellis] won maybe three rounds,” Younan said. “My best round was the eighth round – I had him in the corner and I really thought they were going to end the fight then. I was surprised they didn’t stop the fight.

“I can improve a little bit, I feel I can finish stronger. I’ve only had one eight-round fight before this so this was a big step up for me. I’m growing and learning every fight.

“I’m heartbroken right now. I wanted to win that fight. I want him in a rematch. I know I would win. I know what to do and what not to do.”

Undefeated lightweight Thomas Mattice rallied from behind to score a seventh round TKO of ShoBox veteran Rolando Chinea in the telecast’s co-feature.

Chinea pushed the action as expected from the opening bell, throwing 90 punches in the first round to set a blistering pace for the scheduled eight-round fight. Chinea, who entered having beaten three previously undefeated fighters in his last four bouts, cut the ring off and pressed forward, keeping Mattice largely against the ropes. Mattice did his best work in the center of the ring, but the undefeated Cleveland native was unable to keep the fight from being contested against the ropes.

Down 59-55 entering the seventh, Mattice (11-0, 9 KOs) caught Chinea with a huge right to the chin and, sensing Chinea was hurt, unloaded with a series of combos to the head. With Chinea seemingly out on his feet and falling sideways to the canvas, referee Adam Pollack stepped in to stop the fight at 1:31 of the seventh.

“It was a rough fight,” Mattice said. “I felt like I was behind and my corner told me I needed a knockout. He buzzed me a few times. I caught him in the seventh and he wobbled. At first I was trying for one shot, then I remembered to start using the one-two. Then I landed a body shot, then a hook, and we got what we came here for, which was a knockout.”

Chinea (15-2-1, 6 KOs) was active, throwing an impressive 678 punches over seven-and-a-half rounds, compared to 414 for Mattice. But while he was aggressive and effective on the inside, his neglect of defense is what ultimately hurt him.

“I think I did well pressuring him and sticking to my game plane,” Chinea said. “I just got carried away and got caught with the right shot and, unfortunately, it ended the way it ended.

“I’m a little disappointed it ended the way it did, but that’s boxing and a lot of things can happen in the sport and that’s just the way it went.”

In the opening bout of the three-fight telecast, super lightweight prospect Montana Love kept his unblemished record intact with a majority decision over Sam Teah, scored 78-74, 78-74, 76-76.

The southpaw Love (9-0, 4 KOs) pressed the action from the start, utilizing superior speed and polished footwork to dictate the pace. Cleveland’s Love, who took the fight on just four days’ notice, was seemingly talking trash during rounds, telling Teah what was coming next. But even with the advance warning, Teah was unable to get inside or land anything of consequence. Teah (12-2-1, 5 KOs) seemed to come alive in the sixth but it was too little, too late for the Philadelphia fighter.

“I just kept boxing and pushing him back,” Love said. “I hurt three of my knuckles in my left hand in about the third round. I’m not sure if they’re fractured or not, but if I hadn’t hurt them I would have ended that fight early.

“I felt strong. I just came from a great camp with Robert Easter, which I think helped in this fight tonight. Sparring with Robert and Adrien [Broner], I’ve learned a lot from those guys.

“I give my overall performance a B or a C+. I think I could have done a lot more.”

Teah made no excuses about facing a last-minute opponent.

“He was a crafty southpaw. I knew he was slick, but he was quicker than I expected,” Teah said. “I would ball up to try to come inside and he was sharp with his right hook. Fighting guys on short-notice is the way I expect it. That’s the sport. I was preparing for a southpaw and I got a southpaw. No excuses.”

The event was promoted by GH3 Promotions in association with Roc Nation Sports, Victory Promotions and Ringside Ticket.

Weights from Corpus Christi, Texas.

Zurdo Ramirez 168 vs. Habib Ahmed 166.75

(WBO super middleweight title)

Jerwin Ancajas 114.75 vs. Israel Gonzalez 114

(IBF jr bantamweight title)

Jesse Hart 173.5 vs. Thomas Awimbono 179.5

Teofimo Lopez 139.75 vs. Juan Sanchez 144.5

Gabriel Flores 131.5 vs. Alex Solorio 130

Rohan Murdock 169.5 vs. Frank Filippone 166.5

Jose Benavidez 148 vs. Matthew Strode 149.5

David Kaminsky 148.5 vs. Rafael Munoz 149.5

@trboxing The stage is set as Super Middleweight Gilberto “Zurdo” Ramirez (36-0, 24 KO’s) @zurdoramirez faces off against Habib Ahmed (22-0-1, 17 KO’s) as they get set to battle for the WBO Super Middleweight World Title. @worldboxingorg on Saturday February 3, 2018 at the @americanbankcenter in Corpus Christi, Texas. Live on @espn @espndeportes

@trboxing @BobArum @ToddDuboef

@CarlMoretti @frankstea

@crystinaponcher @4mikeywilliams @mrgardyroots @BruceTrampler @jasonmtang @lavozdelbox

@espinozaboxing @frankespinoza48

Photo credits: @4mikeywilliams 📸

Ramirez- Imam Clash March 17 at The Garden

Top Rank,Inc presents Super Lightweight title fight as Jose Ramirez (21-0, 16 KO’s) from Avenal, California will take on Amir “Young Master” Imam (21-1, 18 KO’s) from Albany, New York in a 12 round battle for the vacant WBC World Super Lightweight Title live from The Theater at the “Mecca” Madison Square Garden in New York City.

A light Heavyweight clash between Ukrainian Oleksandr Gvozdyk (14-0, 12 KO’s) from Oxnard, California will collide against Mehdi Amar (34-5-2, 16 KO’s) from France for the interim WBC World Light Heavyweight Title.

Irishman Featherweight Michael Conlan (5-0, 4 KO’s) will make his third appearance at Madison Square Garden in a undercard attraction bout.

Puerto Rico’s Felix “El Diamante” Verdejo (23-0, 15 KO’s) from San Juan, PR. will make his seventh appearance at Madison Square Garden returning to the ring to face Mexican warrior Antonio Lozada, Jr. (38-2, 32 KO’s) from Tijuana, MX.

Super Featherweight Christopher “Pitufo” Diaz (22-0, 14 KO’s) now training out of New Jersey coming off of his TKO win against Bryant Cruz back in December, Diaz will collide against Miguel “Yael” Beltran, Jr. (32-6, 21 KO’s).

Rising young star Featherweight Jean Carlos Rivera (13-0, 8 KO’s) from Orlando, Florida. will get his opportunity to fight at the Garden for the second time against Jose Haro