NEW YORK (March 09, 2006) – For the first time in over 15 years, MSG will televise its own production of a professional boxing match as “The Irish Express” fight card featuring “Irish” John Duddy vs. Shelby Pudwill will air on St. Patrick’s Day, Friday, March 17 at 11:00 p.m. The Theater at Madison Square Garden card is being taped on Thursday, March 16.
This will be the first MSG production of a professional fight since July 8, 1993 when Kevin Kelley, who went on to become a world featherweight champion, headlined a five bout fight card that included Lonnie Bradley, who himself went on to become a world middleweight champion.
Ireland’s John Duddy (15-0, 13 KO’s), in search of his 16th consecutive win takes on Shelby Pudwill (21-2-1, 9 KO’s) for the vacant WBC Continental Americas Middleweight Championship in the featured attraction presented by Irish Ropes promotions. The co-feature bout will showcase the Irish Middleweight Champion Matthew Macklin (16-1, 12 KO’s) as he defends his title and makes his New York debut. In addition, Maureen Shea (4-0, 3 KO’s), best known as Hillary Swank’s sparring partner for “Million Dollar Baby,” squares off against Leanne Villarreal (1-5-1) in her 5th professional bout.
Keeping with the St. Patrick’s Day trend, Sean O’Grady will handle the blow-by-blow responsibilities with the color commentating provided by “Irish” Mickey Ward.