Steve “USS” Cunningham Fights
Natu “The Truth” Visinia on Oct. 18 at the
2300 Arena in Philadelphia
Tickets Available Now!
Photo Credits: Rich Graessle/Main Events
Philadelphia, PA: Heavyweight contender Steve “USS” Cunningham (27-6, 12 KOs) takes on unbeaten Natu “The Truth” Visinia (10-0, 8 K0s) on Saturday evening, Oct. 18, at the 2300 Arena when NBCSN’s popular Fight Night boxing series returns to South Philadelphia.
Cunningham’s brutal battle with then-undefeated Amir “Hardcore” Mansour on April 4 in front of an electrified hometown crowd earned him the USBA Heavyweight Title and was an instant classic.
The Oct. 18 show also features a solid 10-round junior lightweight contest between Edner Cherry, of Wauchula, FL, and Jerry Belmontes, of Corpus Christi, TX. The Fight Night telecast will begin at 9 PM ET. The doors will open at 6 PM.
Mansour & Cunningham
Photo Credits: Rich Graessle/Main Events
Cunningham, 38, spent the majority of his career at cruiserweight before moving up to heavyweight two years ago.
“This is the third undefeated heavyweight that I am facing and he has more career heavyweight fights than I do,” Cunningham explained. “I have fought more undefeated heavyweight fighters than some heavyweights fight in their entire career. I am up for the challenge. It is always a challenge fighting a young untested fighter, but a job has to be done. We are going to do the job, get this victory and be impressive.”
Photo Courtesy of: Final Forum Promotions
Visinia, 28, of Lakewood, CA, is a former stand-out high school and college football player. He was all-state in Missouri for William Chrisman High School then went on to start at left guard for Southern Illinois University. He took up boxing in 2006 to stay in shape for football, but fell in love with the sport. He began his fighting career in MMA, where he became the #2 ranked amateur heavyweight in the US before making his pro debut on King of the Cage. He then switched to boxing and joined the All American Heavyweight camp. More recently, he signed with Final Forum Promotions, who delivered a reinvigorated Derric Rossy for the August 9, 2014 Fight Night main event against Czar Glazkov. Visinia has knocked out eight of his ten pro boxing opponents-seven of them in the first round. This will be the first 10-round fight of his career.
“Steve Cunningham is a long-time respected world champion and Natu is a young-rising heavyweight contender,” said Visinia’s promoter, Sal Musumeci, of Final Forum Promotions. “And on October 18 it will be out with the old and in with the new.”
Visinia: “I am extremely excited for the opportunity to fight former cruiserweight champ, Steve Cunningham. As much as I admire his experience and accomplishments in the sport, I do not intend on leaving Philly without the win.”
There also should be fireworks in the co-feature.
Cherry & Osiobe
Photo Credits: Rich Graessle/Main Events
Cherry, 32, has not lost in more than six years and is ranked No. 11 in the world by the IBF and No. 17 by the WBC. His 32-6-2 record includes 17 knockouts and he has beaten Vicente Escobido, of Woodland, CA; Stevie Johnston, of Denver, CO; Daniel Alicea, of Santurce, Puerto Rico, and Monte Meza-Clay, of Rankin, PA.
The last man to beat Cherry was Timothy Bradley for the WBC junior welterweight title in 2008. Cherry also lost on points to Paulie Malignaggi in 2007.
Cherry, who has never been stopped, beat Robert Osiobe, of Las Vegas, NV, earlier this year in Philadelphia.
“This is a solid match between two of the best in the world between 130 and 135,” said Hall-of-Fame promoter J Russell Peltz, who handles Cherry. “It’s nice to see fights like this at this level. No one gets a free pass and it’s on neutral ground–neither guy is from Philadelphia.”
Cherry: “I want to thank Russell Peltz and Main Events for this opportunity. I’m ready and hungry and I guarantee the fans are going to get an exciting fight, for as long as it lasts. I will show the world that I am the best 130 pound fighter in the world.”
Photo Credits: Kamil Krzaczynski
Belmontes, 25, who lost a disputed 12-round split decision to Omar Figueroa, of Welasco, TX, for the WBC lightweight title earlier this year, is 19-5, 5 KOs. He followed that with another split-decision loss, this one over 10 rounds against Abner Cotto, of Caguas, Puerto Rico.
Belmontes earned his title shot early in 2014 when he out-pointed previously unbeaten Will Tomlinson, of Australia, at the MGM in Las Vegas. He also has beaten Daniel Diaz, of Nicaragua.
“This is a huge opportunity for Jerry,” said manager Adrian Clark. “He loves Kathy [Duva], Jolene [Mizzone] and everyone at Main Events and he is excited to work with them again. He is looking to redeem himself after the loss to Cotto by beating Edner Cherry and getting back in the hunt and hopefully soon fighting for a 135 pound crown.”
“Once again our matchmakers, Jolene Mizzone and Russell Peltz, have come up with a pair of intriguing cross-roads fights to entertain the Fight Night fans,” said Kathy Duva, CEO of Main Events. “Steve Cunningham is always in a great scrap and the undefeated Visinia is determined to make a statement. Meanwhile, the battle between Cherry and Belmontes promises a lot of action from two fighters who need to win in order to advance their careers.”
UNDEFEATED MIDDLEWEIGHT PROSPECT
PAUL LITTLETON FIGHTS THIS SATURDAY
AT THE AMERISTAR CASINO, IN ST. CHARLES, MO
New York, NY (9/11/14) – On Saturday, September 13, DiBella Entertainment’s (DBE) touted middleweight prospect, Paul Littleton (9-0-1, 5 KO’s), returns to action at the Ameristar Casino, in St. Charles, MO, for the first time since scoring an impressive fourth-round TKO victory over Jeffrey Combs this past June. He’ll be facing the tough battle-tested Lamar Harris in the card’s co-featured bout. Headlined by local bantamweight prospect Stephon “Showstopper” Young (10-0-1, 4 KO’s), this event is promoted by Steve Smith’s Rumble Time Promotions, in association with DiBella Entertainment.
The 28-year-old Littleton is a popular crowd-pleaser from Chicago with an aggressive style. After winning the Chicago Golden Gloves three times while accruing an amateur record of 85-20, Littleton turned pro in December 2011. He has since beaten three undefeated prospects, including having scored a six-round unanimous decision victory over the exalted 7-0 Roberto Acevedo. His lone blemish came via highly disputed split draw to the 9-1 Darnell Wilson in 2012, in a six-round bout most ringside observers felt Littleton clearly won. A troubled youth who moved in and out of group homes during his adolescence, Littleton is now focused on his goal of becoming a world champion, under the guidance of longtime trainer George Hernandez. In June 2014, Littleton signed an exclusive promotional agreement with DiBella Entertainment and the bout against Harris will be his second under the DBE banner.
“I’m excited to be a part of the DiBella Entertainment roster,” said Littleton. “It encourages me to keep working hard. I’m grateful for the opportunity that Lou DiBella has given me and I look forward to continue moving on to bigger things.”
“I’ve watched Paul develop since he was an amateur,” said Littleton’s trainer George Hernandez. “I first saw him competing in the Golden Gloves. He was an exciting, tough kid fighting his ass off, going toe-to-toe with his opponent. He really impressed me, and a year later, I was working with him. Combined with tremendous power in both hands, he has such an awkward style that they call him ‘the Matrix Man’ because he makes moves like Neo in ‘The Matrix’. He’s always in the gym and I believe that he brings a lot to the middleweight division. Now with DiBella Entertainment, I feel that Paul’s true potential will be realized and we’ll see great things from him.”
“Paul Littleton is a good young middleweight prospect,” said Lou DiBella, President of DiBella Entertainment. “In Lamar Harris, he’ll be facing an extremely rugged opponent. We want Paul to get more experience and to be as active as possible as he rises toward contender status.”
Also appearing on the undercard in a four-round junior welterweight contest will be Puerto Rican sensation Kent Cruz (6-0, 4 KO’s), of St. Louis. Co-promoted by DiBella Entertainment and Rumble Time Promotions, Cruz will square off against the hard-hitting Joe Roye.
Legends coming out to support
13th annual Pro-Am ‘Fight To Educate’
Sept. 18 in Manchester, NH
Vito Antuofermo, Chuck Wepner, Earnie Shavers & John Ruiz
MANCHESTER, N.H. (September 11, 2014) – Four boxing legends will lend their support to the 13th annual Fight To Educate (FTE), on Thursday night, September 18 at Verizon Wireless Center in Manchester, New Hampshire.
This year’s legends are former world middleweight champion Vito Antueofermo (50-7-2, 21 KOs), world heavyweight title challengers Chuck “Bayonne Bleeder” Wepner (25-14-2, 17 KOs) and Earnie “The Acorn” Shavers (74-14-1, 68 KOs), and two-time World Boxing Association heavyweight champion John “The Quietman” Ruiz (44-9-1, 30 KOs).
Fight To Educate, presented in part this year by Matrix Aerospace, is a unique charity event that combines a love of boxing with the vision of assisting children and seniors in need who without fundraisers like this could be ‘down for the count.’ During the past 12 years, Fight To Educate has raised more than $750,000 in donations benefitting local New Hampshire non-profit organizations.
Antueofermo captured the WBC/WBA middleweight title in 1979, winning a 15-round split decision over Hugo Corro. Italy-born Antuofermo, who lives in New York City, fought a draw with “Marvelous” Marvin Hagler before losing the title to the Brockton fighter in 1981 when Vito was unable to continue after four rounds.
The movie character, Rocky Balboa, was based on Wepner and his world title fight with Muhammad Ali (Apollo Creed), in the original movie. In their 1975 WBA/WBC heavyweight title fight, Wepner shockingly dropped Ali in the 9th round, only to lose by 15th round technical knockout.
Shavers is recognized as one of the hardest punchers in boxing history. A two-time world title challenger, he extended Ali 15 rounds in 1977, losing a unanimous decision in their WBC/WBA title fight, and two years later was stopped by WBC champion Larry Holmes in the 11th round of one of the most exciting heavyweight fights ever.
Past Fight To Educate legend Ruiz, who now lives in New Hampshire, defeated Evander “The Real Deal” Holyfield by 12-roiund decision in 2001 to become the first (and to date the only) world heavyweight champion of the world of Hispanic heritage. Ruiz became a two-time WBA champion in 2003.
Past Fight To Educate legends have included Roberto “Hands of Stone” Duran, Tommy “Hit Man” Hearns, Aaron “The Hawk” Pryor, Ray “Boom Boom” Mancini, Gerry “The Gentleman” Cooney, Vinny “The Pazmanian Devil” Paz, “Irish” Micky Ward, “Dangerous” Dana Rosenblatt, Michael and Leon “Neon” Spinks, James “Buster” Douglas and promoter Butch Lewis.
World Boxing Organization (WBO) junior middleweight champion Demetrius “Boo Boo” Andrade and former WBO middleweight title-holder Peter “Kid Chocolate” Quillin have fought in past Fight To Educate events.
This year’s professional fights will feature Vermont junior middleweight Chris Giilbert (11-1, 9 KOs), Maine middleweight Russell Lamour (9-0, 4 KOs) and junior welterweight Brandon “The Cannon” Berry (6-0, 4 KOs), and Massachusetts middleweight Mark “The Italian Bazooka” DeLuca (10-0, 7 KOs) in separate bouts. Several amateur matches will open the action, showcasing many of New England’s up-and-coming young boxers.
All fights and fighters are subject to change.
Proceeds from the 13th annual Fight To Educate will benefit SEE Science Center (www.see-sciencecenter.org), The Bobby Stephens Fund for Education (www.stepheneducationfund.com), and New Horizons for New Hampshire.
Tickets, priced at $50.00 and $25.00 (general admission), $10 tickets for Veterans and Senior Citizens 60+, are available to purchase at the Verizon Wireless Arena Box office, by going online at http://www.ticketmaster.com/venueartist/8748/1616837/?brand=verizonarena
Call Stephen Singer at 603.669.4100 for more details about sponsorship opportunities, including VIP table (of 8 for $1000) sponsorships for a night of professional boxing and Black Tie dinner. This special offer also includes an auction and meet-and-greet with the aforementioned boxing legends Antueofermo, Wepner, Shavers and Ruiz.
The dinner starts at 5:30 p.m. ET, doors for boxing open at 7:30 p.m. ET with the first bout scheduled for 8 p.m. ET.