New York, June 26—Dynasty Boxing’s Chinese heavyweight Zhang Zhilei, who captured the Olympic Silver Medal in Beijing in 2008, will make his professional debut on Friday, August 8, on the DiBella Entertainment promotion which will be televised live on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights, it was announced today by Dynasty president Dino Duva.
Zhang, the first fighter to be promoted by Dynasty, will appear in a four-round heavyweight contest at the City Fairgrounds in Fallon, Nevada, as the six-foot-six, highly-regarded prospect blasts off into the professional ranks.
"I want to thank my great friend Lou DiBella and the entire staff at DBE for bringing this ESPN show to Fallon, and for working with us to provide a great international platform for Zhang Zhilei's pro debut,” said Duva.
“In addition, we want to extend our appreciation to the City of Fallon, and Mayor Ken Tedford, Jr. for providing this unique venue at the City Fairgrounds,” added Duva. “Fallon is also the location of the Top Gun military base made famous in the Tom Cruise movie, so it is a great location for Zhang to lift off his career.”
“We are happy to be working with our friend Dino Duva, and to be featuring this great Chinese fighter on our upcoming ESPN card August 8th," said DBE president Lou DiBella.
For Duva, it has been a long journey of four years, hundreds of flights, and thousands of miles traveling between his New Jersey home base and China to cultivate the relationships with the Chinese Boxing Federation.
Duva, the son of Hall of Fame trainer/manager Lou Duva, has specialized in promoting heavyweight boxers and champions, including Lennox Lewis, Evander Holyfield, Michael Moorer, George Foreman, Samuel Peter, Riddick Bowe, and Kirk Johnson at various junctures in their careers.
For Terry and Tommy Lane, the Dynasty vice presidents and sons of legendary referee Mills Lane, the debut of Zhang Zhilei is the long-awaited opportunity to take the next step as promoters, after years of watching their beloved father officiate major championship fights throughout the country, followed by their initial successful venture, Nevada-based “Let’s Get It On” Promotions.
“Zhang Zhilei has the whole package – size, athleticism, good looks, and great personality,” adds Duva. “And one other thing: he knows how to fight! He has more of a pro style than Olympic style. Mark my words, once boxing fans get a chance to see him, he will be the talk of the heavyweight division and all of boxing! I believe he is going to be the most important heavyweight to come along since the Klitschkos turned pro in 1996.”
Who will win? Wladimir Klitschko or Tyson Fury?