FORT WORTH, TEXAS (January 4, 2011) — It was announced today that ESPN Friday Night Fights will be presented at and broadcast live from the Fort Worth Convention Center Arena on Friday, February 4, 2011. Billed as SUPER BRAWL 2011, the event is scheduled just two days prior to the 2011 Super Bowl at Cowboys Stadium, in Arlington, Texas.
The main event on the six-bout professional fight card will feature former world champion and current #8 world ranked Junior Middleweight, Sergio Mora (22-1-2, Los Angeles, CA), taking on Fort Worth’s highly regarded Brian Vera (17-5). Mora is fresh off a draw with future boxing Hall of Famer, Sugar Shane Mosley this past September 18th.
Also slated for action will be top Dallas-Fort Worth prospects Charles Hatley (17-0, Dallas…2008 Olympic Trials finalist), Luis Yanez (4-0, Dallas…2008 U.S. Olympian) and Chap Huggins (6-0-1, Fort Worth). Their opponents as well as the remainder of the card — is to be announced. The event is being presented by Marines Promotions, in association with SPOT, Inc, of Fort Worth.
Tickets for the event are to be priced at $25, $35, $50 and $125 (VIP) and will be available at all Ticketmaster locations and online at www.ticketmaster.com, beginning on Saturday, January 8th.
VIP tickets include seating in the first five rows of ringside and admission to a VIP Pre-Fight Reception (6:00 – 7:15 pm) honoring several NFL stars (to be announced).
Fort Worth has long been recognized as a major hub for boxing. As host of the Texas Golden Gloves and home of world champions Donald Curry, Gene Hatcher, Steve Cruz and Troy Dorsey, Fort Worth has earned its reputation as a Fight Town. Now comes ESPN Friday Night Fights on the biggest sports weekend in North Texas history.
“All of Fort Worth is excited that our Fort Worth Convention Center Arena has been chosen to host ESPN Friday Night Fights on Super Bowl weekend,” said Fort Worth Mayor, Mike Moncrief. “This live, prime-time broadcast will be an outstanding addition to all the exciting events coming to our city and the North Texas region as part of the Super Bowl festivities. No doubt, it will be a great compliment to the extensive coverage and exposure Fort Worth will receive from ESPN's many hours of broadcasting from Sundance Square throughout Super Bowl week.”
For Mora and Vera, fighting on a big stage is nothing new. Both starred in the television reality series “The Contender”, with Mora winning the 2004 season and Vera finishing runner-up in 2007 season. Nicknamed “The Latin Snake,” Mora captured his “Contender” title with a thunderous win over Peter Manfredo, Jr. in the shows finale on NBC.
Mora would go on to eventually capture his only world title on June 7, 2008 when he defeated champion, Vernon Forest for the coveted WBC World Junior Middleweight Championship. In a rematch three months later, Forest would regain his title. But Mora faced the biggest challenge in his career on September 18, 2010, when he battled future Hall of Famer Sugar Shane Mosley at STAPLES Center in Los Angeles. They battled back and forth for 12 rounds in front of hometown fans with the fight ending in a draw.
Mosley moves on to fight mega star, Manny Pacquiao in May 2011, with Mora continuing his assault on the middleweight title, but having to go through a tough Vera to get there.
“I’m anticipating a very tough fight from Brian Vera,” said Mora from his Los Angeles training headquarters. “He (Vera) has beaten some very good fighters, including knocking out Andy Lee and handing him his only loss in 25 fights. Lee is #6 in the world now, so that tells you how dangerous Vera is. No question I have my work cut out for me. Vera is a tough fight for anyone and the fact that the fight is in his hometown only makes it tougher.”
Vera is excited about getting a shot at the top-ten rated Mora . “This is the road to the Super Bowl for me,” stated Vera. “My goal has always been to fight for the world middleweight championship and a win over a former world champion and top-ten contender like Mora is what has to happen for me to get that opportunity. “
For both Mora and Vera, fighting on Super Bowl weekend will be special for them.
“That was part of the intrigue for me and one of the reasons I took this fight,” said Mora. “Being part of the action around the Super Bowl will make it even more exciting. Also, I’m sure the ratings will be big on ESPN with all the Super Bowl hype on the network.
“I’m pumped up about the fight, especially coming back to Fort Worth and fighting on Super Bowl weekend,” Vera agreed. “There’s going to be a lot of action in town and to be part of this card will be special.”