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    Fight News

    BROOKLYN BOXING'S NEXT STOP IS ON LONG ISLAND

    BROOKLYN BOXING'S NEXT STOP IS ON LONG ISLAND

    After 31 years, boxing is back at Long Island’s home arena.

    The first Brooklyn Boxing On Long Island event to be held at NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum will be a PBC on FOX event on Saturday, July 15. Former world welterweight champions Omar Figueroa and Robert Guerrero will headline the event, along with a collision of undefeated light heavyweights as Long Island favorite Seanie Monaghan takes on Staten Island’s Marcus Browne. The fight card also includes powerful heavyweights Artur Szpilka and Adam Kownacki.

    Figueroa, the 27-year-old former WBC world lightweight champion, carries a 26-0-1 record with 18 knockouts. Guerrero has held world championships at both featherweight and junior lightweight, plus interim belts at lightweight and welterweight. He’s also had welterweight championship bouts against Floyd Mayweather, Keith Thurman and Danny Garcia.

    Long Beach’s Seanie Monaghan didn’t turn pro until he was 29 years old, but the 35-year-old former bricklayer has battled his way to a 28-0 record with a rugged style. In June 2012 he captured the WBC Continental Americas light heavyweight title and has successfully defended that belt eight times. Browne, who has fought in 11 Brooklyn Boxing events at Barclays Center, is 19-0 with 14 knockouts after his February knockout of Thomas Williams Jr.

    The hard-punching Szpilka is returning to the ring for the first time since his WBC world heavyweight championship loss to Deontay Wilder in January 2016. He has a 20-2 career record. Kownacki, Polish-born like Szpilka, is 15-0 with 12 knockouts.

    For a decade, the giants of an era took to the ring at the Coliseum, with the arena’s last fight night headlined by the explosive young heavyweight Mike Tyson. Just a year into his professional career, Tyson registered his 19th knockout in as many fights on March 10, 1986. Eight months later he knocked out Trevor Berbick to claim the WBC world heavyweight title, his first championship belt.

    The first step in bringing a world title fight back to the Coliseum came with the opening of Barclays Center in 2012. The new arena’s Brooklyn Boxing platform has hosted more than 35 title fights and over 150 bouts on 22 fight nights in the last five years.

    Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment’s commitment to boxing now extends to Long Island, building on the Coliseum’s great history. Before Mike Tyson, the Coliseum hosted legends such as Roberto Duran, Joe Frazier and George Foreman.

    Heavyweight Jerry Quarry headlined the inaugural event on May 8, 1974. Quarry, who had twice faced Muhammad Ali, registered a second-round knockout of Joe Alexander, one month before his second fight against Joe Frazier.

    The following year, WBA world lightweight champion Roberto Duran defeated Edwin Viruet. It was the 54th fight of Duran’s epic career, which would span 119 bouts – including 70 knockout victories – over 33 years.

    In 1976, George Foreman and Joe Frazier came to the Coliseum for their second bout. Foreman defeated Frazier by knockout for the second time and Frazier – who had lost the Thrilla in Manila to Ali the previous year – retired from the ring, returning to fight just once more five years later. Within a year of his win over Frazier, Foreman retired as well, only to return a decade later for a second act that would see him reclaim the WBA world heavyweight title that he previously won in his first victory over Frazier.

    Long Island’s own Gerry Cooney made his only appearance at the Coliseum on October 24, 1980 as momentum built toward his shot at the world heavyweight title. The Huntington-raised Cooney knocked out Ron Lyle in the first round, and would go on to do the same to former champ Ken Norton a few months later before battling Larry Holmes into the 13th round of a WBC championship fight in 1982.

    In the next-to-last fight card at the Coliseum, former middleweight champion Vito Antuofermo defeated Marcus Starks with a fourth-round knockout.

    Beginning July 15, a new era of championship boxing on Long Island begins.

    FIRST LOOK AT FUTURE STARS

    FIRST LOOK AT FUTURE STARS

    Richardson Hitchins couldn’t have asked for anything more.

    The Brooklyn native was in the ring for the first time as a pro, right in his hometown, and right at home at Barclays Center.

    “A dream come true,” he called it.

    Hitchins actually wasn’t out there very long. It took the 2016 Olympian less than two minutes to dispatch Mario Perez in a matchup of young welterweights.

    “I established my jab,” said Hitchins. “I’m an accurate puncher. I knew as soon as that right hand landed, I was going to see where he’s at; if he’s going to take it, if it’s going to be a long night. I saw him trying to step back and get away. He went on survival mode. I tried to rush it a little bit, but I tried to stay composed.

    “I caught him and it was done. I expected him to get up.”

    Hitchins finished off Perez before the biggest boxing crowd in Barclays Center history had finished filling the seats for the main event, the welterweight unification title bout between Danny Garcia and Keith Thurman.

    But he offered the latest reminder that the thrill of BROOKLYN BOXING is about more than the headliners. Over the last five years, up-and-coming boxers have taken huge steps toward stardom in the Barclays Center ring.

    The Thurman-Garcia crowd saw another rising star back in March in super welterweight Erickson Lubin. ESPN’s 2016 Prospect of the Year set himself up for a title shot with a fourth-round TKO of Jorge Cota, punishing the veteran from start to finish. Lubin is just three-and-a-half years into his career with an 18-0 record. Just 21 years old, if he gets his title shot this year and triumphs, he’ll be the boxing’s youngest world champion.

    Currently, that distinction belongs to Gervonta Davis. In January, the 22-year-old took the IBF world super featherweight title with a seventh-round TKO of Jose Pedraza at Barclays Center.

    From the start, BROOKLYN BOXING has offered a spotlight to young fighters, particularly local boxers like Hitchins. Staten Island’s Marcus Browne made his first Barclays Center appearance on the arena’s second fight night in March 2013, an event that also featured the future unified welterweight champ Thurman on the undercard. 

    It was Browne’s second pro fight after he represented the United States at the 2012 Olympics, and he fought 11 times at Barclays Center over a three-year span while running his pro record to 20-0.

    Browne is just one of the 2012 Olympians who have emerged as title contenders since turning pro. Another is Errol Spence Jr., who fought twice in Brooklyn in 2016.

    At Barclays Center last April, Spence took on former WBO world super lightweight champion Chris Algieri, who had gone the distance with Manny Pacquiao and Amir Khan. In August on Coney Island, Spence headlined his first bout card against another experienced fighter, Leonard Bundu.

    Spence put the tough-as-nails Algieri on the mat three times on the way to a fifth-round TKO, with the referee waving off the bout without a count on the third knockdown. Four months later, Spence knocked out Bundu in the fifth.

    “Chris Algieri, he fought Manny Pacqiauo and went the distance,” said Spence. “You have Bundu who went the distance with Keith Thurman, marked up Keith Thurman pretty good. It was kind of a range-finder to see where my skills were at, how I do under pressure, and I thought I did great.”

    The two wins in Brooklyn propelled Spence to his first title shot, coming up next month against IBF welterweight champ Kell Brook in England. Spence plans on bringing the belt back to the United States. And he’d like to be back in the ring at Barclays Center, this time as champion.

    “I’ve got great memories in Brooklyn,” Spence said while at the arena for the Thurman-Garcia fight. “All knockouts.

    “I’ll definitely come back here.”

    That’s the path Richardson Hitchins wants to follow. Originally from Crown Heights, the 19-year-old moved to Flatbush when he was five. That’s where he found the Atlas Cops & Kids Boxing Program at a neighborhood PAL gym six years ago. He won two Golden Gloves titles at Barclays Center before signing with Mayweather Promotions and turning pro. He’s back here tonight for his second pro fight.

    “I want to make Barclays Center my home,” said Hitchins, “fighting big cards and targeting that world title shot.”

    BERTO AND PORTER ARE READY TO BATTLE AT BARCLAYS CENTER

    BERTO AND PORTER ARE READY TO BATTLE AT BARCLAYS CENTER

    One after another, the electric matchups in the loaded welterweight division keep coming. And they keep coming to Barclays Center.

    The latest is Andre Berto vs. Shawn Porter on Saturday, April 22. Two former champions, now one night away from another shot at reclaiming a belt.

    Both fighters are trying to prove they deserve to be part of the championship conversations following setbacks. Porter’s was by the narrowest of margins.

    Last June at Barclays Center he lost a narrow decision to Keith Thurman, 115-113 on all three scorecards in a bout that ESPN.com ranked as one of its top five fights of 2016. Thurman retained his WBC title and added the WBA belt with his win over Danny Garcia at Barclays Center on March 4.

    That very same night, as the Berto vs. Porter matchup was being announced, the fighters learned their winner would be the mandatory challenger to Thurman for the WBC title that Berto once held, and that Porter was so close to claiming last June.

    “I couldn’t have been more surprised,” said Porter of learning that this would be a title eliminator bout. “I don’t think there was anything in my life that I’ve been more pleased with a surprise other than that.

    “My heart, it just glowed with happiness. I’m looking forward to this fight. I’ve been looking forward to this moment for a long time.”

    PURCHASE TICKETS

    The 33-year-old Berto is four years older than Porter. He’s followed a longer road back to this opportunity, and a longer road period. He’s seen the boxing world from all sides and watched the narrative around him change.

    Berto had his turn as the hot rising star, winning his first 27 pro fights and capturing the WBC title in 2008.

    The ride came to an end with a loss to Victor Ortiz almost exactly six years ago in April 2011. That was the first of three losses in four fights for Berto, who battled shoulder problems and eventually had surgery.

    He returned with wins against Steve Chambers and Josesito Lopez before dropping a decision to Floyd Mayweather Jr. in the undefeated, unified champ’s last fight.

    In April 2016 Berto got his long-awaited rematch against Victor Ortiz and made a thunderous statement with a fourth-round knockout.

    “From my first loss I’ve been written off,” said Berto. “That’s just the way the fight game is. From my first loss on it’s been speculation. I’ve been through my hard times. Everything I’ve been through in this fight game has been on that TV screen.

    “I love it because I love that rollercoaster ride. I’ve never seen my career as being perfect. I always wanted to feel everything this game has to offer.”

    Porter expected to be back in this position, but maybe not this quickly. Berto has battled back from an unexpected detour to get back in the mix for a title shot.

    “This should be a very good fight,” said Porter. “That’s why this fight is very anticipated because you know what I can do and you know what Andre can do.”

    The undercards promise as much action as the Berto vs. Porter main event. Unbeaten world super welterweight champion Jermell Charlo makes his first title defense against Charles Hatley and four-division champion Amanda Serrano will be looking to make history as the first woman and first Puerto Rican fighter to win a fifth world title in five different weight classes.

    BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ERIC L. ADAMS TO DECLARE APRIL 22, 2017 TO BE 'DANIEL JACOBS DAY' IN BROOKLYN

    BROOKLYN BOROUGH PRESIDENT ERIC L. ADAMS TO DECLARE APRIL 22, 2017 TO BE 'DANIEL JACOBS DAY' IN BROOKLYN

    Jacobs To Be Honored In Ceremony During Berto vs. Porter Event at Barclays Center

    BROOKLYN (April 10, 2017) – Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams will declare Saturday, April 22, 2017 to be ‘Daniel Jacobs Day’ in Brooklyn, in a ceremony at that evening’s Andre Berto vs. Shawn Porter welterweight showdown at Barclays Center.

    Jacobs’ Get In The Ring Foundation, through which he advocates for children struggling with cancer, childhood obesity, and bullying, will donate 100 tickets to the event to local families, children, teens in the Brooklyn community.

    Jacobs, a Brownsville, Brooklyn-native, has fought at Barclays Center five times, and most recently, challenged Gennady “GGG” Golovkin in a closely contested loss. Jacobs is the face of BROOKLYN BOXING™, the flourishing boxing platform for Barclays Center, through which he trains and competes in branded gloves, trunks, shoes and robes.

    In March, BROOKLYN BOXING unveiled a special merchandise collection in Jacobs’ honor, which features sweatshirts, sweatpants, t-shirts, and hats adorned with black and gold BROOKLYN BOXING branding alongside the fighter’s “Miracle Man” moniker, and is sold at BrooklynBoxingShop.com.

    In 2011, Jacobs was diagnosed with Osteosarcoma, a life-threatening form of bone cancer. After an arduous battle, radiation treatments and surgery, Jacobs returned to the ring at Barclays Center where he went on to win the WBA world middleweight title in August 2014.

    ABOUT BROOKLYN SPORTS & ENTERTAINMENT

    Brooklyn Sports & Entertainment (BSE) develops and operates state-of-the-art venues and manages premier sports franchises, delivering dynamic content and experiences for audiences. BSE oversees programming, marketing, sales, and operations for Barclays Center and NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum Presented By New York Community Bank, and manages and controls the NBA's Brooklyn Nets and its Development League team, the Long Island Nets, as well as the business operations of the NHL's New York Islanders.

    Barclays Center, which opened on September 28, 2012, offers 17,732 seats for basketball, 15,795 for hockey, and up to 19,000 seats for concerts, and has 101 luxury suites, four bars/lounges, four clubs, and 40/40 CLUB & Restaurant by Tanduay.

    NYCB LIVE, home of the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum, is scheduled to reopen April 5, 2017 after extensive renovation. The Coliseum offers 14,500 seats for basketball, MMA and boxing, 13,900 for hockey, up to 16,000 for concerts, and 4,500 seats for its theater configuration. With a focus on emerging businesses, BSE identifies and creates alliances, strategic partnerships and other business opportunities to ensure the success of its assets.

    For additional information, please visit brooklynse.com.

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