NEW YORK, November 29 - This Saturday night, December 1 marks the return of Puerto Rican superstar Miguel Cotto to Madison Square Garden in New York City where he will face undefeated WBA Super Welterweight World Champion Austin Trout. Before Cotto enters the ring in the main event of the SHOWTIME CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING® tripleheader, some of his island's finest up-and-comers, including Jorge Melendez and Jeffrey Fontanez will step through the ropes on what promises to be a crowd-pleasing undercard.
Also in action in the Big Apple will be Newark, New Jersey's Michael Perez, New Brunswick, New Jersey's Jorge Diaz and The Bronx's Eddie Gomez, adding a genuine local flavor to fight night at The Garden.
Making his Madison Square Garden debut, Manati's Jorge Melendez (24-2-1, 23 KO's) has thrilled Puerto Rican fans for years with his knockout power and exciting style. Putting his 11-fight winning streak on the line in a fight that will be aired exclusively in Puerto Rico as part of the event's pay-per-view broadcast on the island, the 23-year-old power-puncher is prepared to show that he is a force in the super welterweight division. Melendez will face Greensboro, North Carolina's James Winchester 15-6 (5 KO's) in an eight-round fight.
Another ferocious youngster out of Puerto Rico, 20-year-old Caguas native Jeffrey Fontanez (9-0, 8 KO's) will also be making his New York City debut and will appear on the Puerto Rican pay-per-view broadcast. Fontanez, who is 6-0 in 2012 with three first round knockouts, will fight help to continue the long-standing Puerto Rico-Mexico boxing rivalry when he meets Tijuana's Pedro Arcos (12-2-1, 9 KO's) in a four/six-round junior lightweight bout.
Newark's Michael "The Artist" Perez (17-1-1, 10 KO's) bounced back from the lone loss of his career in January against top prospect Omar Figueroa by stopping Eric Cruz in two rounds in June and decisioning Fidel Maldonado Jr. in August. On Saturday, the red-hot prospect who has fought five times in his family's native Puerto Rico, will attempt to close the year with another win as he faces Obregon, Mexico's Fernando Carcamo (10-4, 7 KO's) in an eight-round lightweight clash that will open Puerto Rico's pay-per-view telecast.
New Brunswick, New Jersey's Jorge Diaz (16-1, 10 KO's) was a highly decorated amateur who is now pursuing his dreams of professional glory at 126 pounds. A local favorite making his fifth appearance at Madison Square Garden, Diaz rebounded from the lone loss of his career against Teon Kennedy in 2011 with a third round technical knockout victory over Rafael Lora in September of 2011. He will attempt to make it two straight when he squares off against Houston's Victor Sanchez (3-4-1) in a six-round featherweight bout.
Twenty-year-old junior middleweight phenom Eddie Gomez (11-0, 8 KO's) is coming off of a blistering second round knockout of Saul Benitez in October and the Bronx product is back in action this weekend, this time making his Madison Square Garden debut. In the opposing corner will be Gomez' toughest test to date, fellow unbeaten Luis Hernandez (9-0, 5 KO's) of Rio Piedras, Puerto Rico, who he faces in a fight scheduled for six rounds.
In the opening bout of the evening scheduled for six rounds in the middleweight division, unbeaten John Thompson (9-0, 3 KO's) of Newark takes on Port Au Prince, Haiti's Eli Augustama (6-5, 3 KO's).
"Showdown: Cotto vs. Trout" is a 12-round battle between Four-Time and Three-Division World Champion Miguel Cotto and undefeated WBA Super Welterweight World Champion Austin Trout taking place on Saturday, December 1 at Madison Square Garden in New York City. The co-featured fights will see Jayson Velez take on Salvador Sanchez in a 10-round fight for the vacant WBC Silver Featherweight title and Danny "Miracle Man" Jacobs battle Chris "The Irish Ghost" Fitzpatrick in an eight-round middleweight fight. The event is promoted by Miguel Cotto Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions in association with Greg Cohen Promotions, sponsored by The Puerto Rican Tourism Board and Corona and will be televised live on SHOWTIME at 9:00 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the west coast).
LAS VEGAS, NEV. (November 29, 2012) – Top Rank will debut its latest fan-oriented innovation -- “Just Watch” -- a one-hour live stream of Fighter of the Decade Manny Pacquiao training session, Tomorrow! Friday, November 30, beginning at
5:30 p.m. ET / 2:30 p.m. PT. Streamed live on TopRank.com, InsideHBOBoxing.com and other major sports, boxing and entertainment websites, “Just Watch” will also be simulcast in Times Square on the NASDAQ building screen, which is seven stories tall, encompassing a quarter-acre of screen space.
Produced by Top Rank, in association with MLB Advanced Media (MLBAM), in full HD and utilizing a unique five-camera system, “Just Watch” will show all the action throughout the famous Wild Card Boxing Club of an actual training session between eight-division world champion Pacquiao and his Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach as they prepare for Pacquiao’s epic fourth battle against four-division world champion and Méxican icon Juan Manuel Márquez which will take place next week.
Hosted by Top Rank’s Crystina Poncher, the live stream, will give fans an unprecedented view of Pacquiao’s training session in live time.
“We wanted to give boxing fans a front row seat to what training camp for a big fight is like just days away from walking into the ring,” said Todd duBoef, president of Top Rank. “This has never been done before and if we were going to present it on one of the biggest stages – Friday rush hour in Times Square – it only made sense to do it with boxing’s biggest star, Manny Pacquiao.”
All-new editions of HBO’s all-access reality series 24/7 PACQUIAO/MARQUEZ 4 debut on Saturday, December 1 (9:30-10:00 p.m. ET/PT) – while the finale debuts Friday, December 7 (8:00-8:30 p.m. ET/PT), the night before the high-stakes welterweight showdown. All four episodes will have multiple replay dates on HBO, and the series will also be available on HBO On Demand and HBO GO®.
Pacquiao (54-4-2, 38 KOs), of the Philippines, and Juan Manuel Márquez (54-6-1, 39 KOs), of México, who have won world titles in 12 weight divisions between them, will go mano a mano and toe-to-toe, for the fourth time, in a 12-round welterweight battle, Saturday, December 8, at the MGM Grand Garden Arena in Las Vegas, Nev.
Who wins the WBO Middleweight title fight Dec. 19th?