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HBO BOXING® PRESENTS AN EXPLOSIVE MIDDLEWEIGHT TITLE SHOWDOWN PLUS AN ALL-ACTION FLYWEIGHT BATTLE WHEN WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING®: GENNADY GOLOVKIN VS. WILLIE MONROE JR. AND ROMAN GONZALEZ VS. EDGAR SOSA IS SEEN SATURDAY, MAY 16

POSTED ON Wednesday, May 13, 2015  - POSTED IN Events, Fights, News

Perhaps the sport’s most feared fighter, middleweight titleholder Gennady Golovkin has built a powerhouse reputation by demonstrating a willingness to take on any challenge and displaying an intriguing array of skills, highlighted by stunning knockout power.

The Kazakhstan native makes his 2015 U.S. debut when WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING: GENNADY GOLOVKIN VS. WILLIE MONROE JR. AND ROMAN GONZALEZ VS. EDGAR SOSA is seen SATURDAY, MAY 16 at 10:00 p.m. (live ET/tape-delayed PT) from the historic Forum in Inglewood, Cal., exclusively on HBO. The HBO Sports team will be ringside to call all the action, which will be available in HDTV, closed-captioned for the hearing-impaired and presented in Spanish on HBO Latino.

Other HBO playdates: May 17 (9:45 a.m.) and 18 (11:30 p.m.)

HBO2 playdates: May 17 (3:30 p.m.) and 19 (11:15 p.m.)

In the 14th defense of his middleweight crown, Gennady Golovkin (32-0, 29 KOs), originally from Karaganda, Kazakhstan, and now training at Big Bear, Cal., meets Willie Monroe Jr. (19-1, 6 KOs) from Ithaca, NY, in a scheduled 12-round contest. Currently boasting a knockout victory streak of 19, Golovkin has taken the boxing world by storm with an extraordinary knockout-to-win ratio of better than 90%. No opponent has gone the distance with him since Nov. 2008, and he began 2015 by battering and eventually knocking out the formidable Martin Murray on Feb. 21. His 2014 fights ended in the seventh, third and second rounds. Trained by the highly regarded Abel Sanchez, Golovkin will be making his eighth appearance on HBO since his auspicious network debut in Sept. 2012.

Willie Monroe’s top accomplishments as a pro include a victory against the previously undefeated Brandon Adams to win the 2014 Boxcino Middleweight Tournament final, and defeating the hard-nosed Brian Vera this past January, while his only loss came more than four years ago via a close split decision. The slick southpaw faces the toughest test of his career in what will also be his first 12-round contest.

The opening bout is a spectacular flyweight attraction, as 112-pound rising star Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez (42-0, 36 KOs) of Managua, Nicaragua meets Edgar Sosa (51-8, 30 KOs) of Mexico City in a 12-round title bout. Gonzalez has become a consensus top-ten pound-for-pound fighter and looks to extend his knockout streak to eight. Crafty veteran Sosa has a history of accepting difficult challenges.

Follow HBO boxing news at hbo.com/boxing, on Facebook at facebook.com/hboboxing and on Twitter at twitter.com/hboboxing.

All HBO boxing events are presented in HDTV. HBO viewers must have access to the HBO HDTV channel to watch HBO programming in high definition.

The executive producer of WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING is Rick Bernstein; producer, Jon Crystal; director, Johnathan Evans.

® WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP BOXING is a registered service mark of Home Box Office, Inc.

Willie Monroe Jr. arrives in Los Angeles for Golovkin showdown

POSTED ON Wednesday, May 13, 2015  - POSTED IN Events, Fights, News

WBA number-two ranked contender Willie “El Mongoose” Monroe Jr. arrives at LAX with his team for Saturday’s Middleweight title fight against Gennady Golovkin that will take place at the Forum in Inglewood, California and will be televised on HBO World Championship Boxing® beginning at 10 PM ET/PT

GENNADY “GGG” GOLOVKIN – WILLIE MONROE JR. International Media Conference Call Transcript Tuesday, May 5, 2015

POSTED ON Thursday, May 7, 2015  - POSTED IN Events, Fights, News

Bernie Bahrmasel: Hello, and welcome to the International Media Conference Call for the Middleweight Championship of the World as boxing superstar Gennady “GGG” Golovkin defends his WBA, IBO and Interim WBC Title against number two ranked challenger Willie “The Mongoose” Monroe Jr., set for next Saturday night, May 16th at The “Fabulous” Forum in Los Angeles, and telecast live in the United States on HBO World Championship Boxing at 10 p.m. Eastern.

We are seeing an overwhelming amount of interest in this event, which also features the HBO debut of fast-rising star Roman “Chocolatito” Gonzalez defending his WBC junior flyweight title against number two ranked challenger, Edgar Sosa.

This week, we will be distributing an extensive fight week media schedule of Los Angeles area events. For the media, if you have not yet done so, please apply for credentials at MagnaMedia.com.

Joining us first on this call from his training camp in Big Bear Lake, California will be Gennady, his world-renowned trainer, Abel Sanchez, and the managing director of K2 Promotions, Tom Loeffler. Later in the call, we will be joined by Willie Monroe Jr., from his training camp in Winter Haven, Florida, and his promoter, the head of Banner Promotions, Artie Pelullo along with his trainer Tony Morgan.

It’s now my pleasure to turn the call over to Tom Loeffler of K2 Promotions, who will introduce Gennady Golovkin and Abel Sanchez for their opening comments. Go ahead, Tom.

Tom Loeffler: Thanks, Bernie. We’re excited at bringing Gennady back to the Los Angeles area. We’ve gotten a great response from the fans with the ticket sales. Gennady has a 19-fight knockout streak going right now, and provides a lot of excitement in the ring and there have been a lot of calls for him getting back into the ring. We saw the fight on Saturday night and people seem to be yearning for some excitement, and that’s what Gennady guarantees in the ring, and we have a great co-feature with “Chocolatito” Gonzales against Edgar Sosa. Chocolatito’s making his HBO debut, as well, and I know a lot of fans in the L.A. area are also excited to see Chocolatito in the ring.

And Willie Monroe is the number two-rated contender and poses a very unconventional style with his southpaw stance and his movement in the ring, so I think this’ll be a great contrast to styles.

With that, I want to introduce Abel Sanchez from his Summit Training Camp in Big Bear Lake.

Abel Sanchez: Hi. Good morning, guys. We’re looking forward to-what is it ten days from now eleven days from now, putting on another fantastic show. We’re fortunate to have a young man in Willie Monroe who I know is going to come to fight and provide us with that exciting fight that we haven’t had. Well, actually last week was not as exciting as this one’s going to be, so hopefully Willie’s in great shape. I know that Tony’s getting him ready, so we’re looking forward to this Saturday night.

Tom Loeffler: And then I also want to introduce the WBA, the WBC Interim Champion, IBO Middleweight Champion, 32-0 with 29 knockouts, Gennady “GGG” Golovkin.

Gennady Golovkin: Good morning. A couple of weeks before the fight and I’m ready, I feel good. Hopefully, Willie will be ready to fight because we’ll have a strong fight and a good performance for the fans. I promise a big drama show. I hope he is ready also. Thank you to my team, the fans and media for all their support and to HBO.

Q. Hi, guys. Thanks for taking the time to do the call. My question is for Gennady. Your May 16th fight comes at an interesting time, right on the heels of Mayweather/Pacquiao, a fight in which a lot of people-I dare say most people said it didn’t feature enough action for their liking. Did you watch the fight? And, what did you think of Mayweather/Pacquiao?

Gennady Golovkin: Yes. Everybody wanted the fight for the last five years. I think Floyd’s too smart. This is Floyd’s style; he doesn’t take too many shots. Floyd’s too smart, he’s a great boxer, he’s number one in the world.

Q. And what about Pacquiao? What did you think of his performance?

Gennady Golovkin: Pacquiao, I think he loses control of the fight. He could not do anything against Floyd. Pacquiao is very good, but it was a very smart fight for Floyd.

Q. Listen, I’m not looking past Willie Monroe, that wouldn’t be wise. I expect you’re too talented for him, though. So, what about next fight, you against Floyd Mayweather at 154 pounds? I believe you, maybe, are the next logical opponent to test Floyd Mayweather.

Gennady Golovkin: Of course, it is my dream fight. Obviously, Floyd, he is a great champion, and a little bit different style. Floyd, he’s a smart guy. He does a lot of moving. For my style, a little bit different, I like drama show, I like real fight, like close fight. I want show, big show; big drama show!

Q. And you would bring that big drama show if you were to get a fight with Floyd Mayweather?

Gennady Golovkin: Absolutely.

Q. Excellent. Great answer. I appreciate it. Good luck.

Q. Question is for Abel. Abel, how do you deal with all these questions about who is next? We just had one-who is next for Gennady when he is to fight on May 16, the guy who is probably one of the fastest guys you have ever fought. How do you deal with this? And, how do you keep GGG concentrated on the task on hand? Not to talk about Canelo, and not to talk about Floyd and everything else, May 16th is first.

Abel Sanchez: Well, fortunately we have a real professional in Gennady Golovkin in the gym, so the questions about anybody else are only on these types of calls. In the gym, he’s solely focused on Willie Monroe. Willie Monroe’s going to be a tough challenge, and we’re not overlooking him by any means because if we take a stumble here, all those other names are mute.

So, Golovkin is concentrating on Willie Monroe, unless of course they ask questions like this in a media call, but there’s no doubt in my mind that we’ll be ready for, mentally and physically, for May 16th.

Q. One more question, if I may. The combined records of the last five opponents for Gennady is 165 wins, only 15 losses. Where would you put Willie Monroe in-between those fighters? How would you rate him among the last five Gennady fought?

Abel Sanchez: I think as far as skills and as far as ability in the ring, he’s got to be in the top three, and maybe the top two. Experience, maybe not quite as experienced as the other guys, but Willie has proven in bigger fights, the Boxcino Tournament for instance, that he can handle himself in the ring, so he’s up there, like I said, one, two, or three. A very, very, very good fighter.

Q: Good morning, gentlemen. I just have two quick questions. Gennady, we know your reputation and your resume and your desire to fight, but you continue to get criticism for not taking proper fights without people really putting the blame on people who have to agree to fight you. How does that make you feel when people say that about you?

Gennady Golovkin: I feel great. I feel good now. This fight is really important for my career, and for everybody, for my people, for my team. Thank you very much for my people. It’s very important for me, this fight with Willie, right now my focus is on Willie Monroe because he’s a great champion, he’s a great challenger for me and he may be next champion. Every fight is important for me.

Q. With fighting against Willie Monroe, he’s a southpaw, and we’ve seen a lot said that you wanted to face that type of opponent, who is a southpaw. What do you hope that this performance will show to people watching you about your style, and the way you fight?

Gennady Golovkin: I want to fight a southpaw because I want to show everybody that I can beat any style, it doesn’t matter. Anybody, strong guy, tall guy, short guy, just anybody. I’m very anxious. This is a big test for me. I remember a lot of fighters, like Canelo, Cotto, and a lot of great champions have have problems with southpaws. So why not test myself.

Q. Abel, Gennady kind of answered the question I was about to ask, but what I guess from a trainer’s standpoint, what do you see Willie Monroe bringing to the table that Gennady hasn’t yet seen on his way up?

Abel Sanchez: A lot of movement and slickness and if Gennady fights a southpaw in the future were better prepared for the style.

Willie is a proven and good fighter in, like I said in the Boxcino Tournament, so it’s not like we’re fighting a guy that’s on-that has never been in a situation like this. The difference is he’s going to go in against Golovkin and Golovkin seems to bring these guys down to the level that they’re not much for him, but if Willie brings his A game, I think we’re looking at five or six tough rounds, and then the stretch will be who’s got more in the tank.

Q. Gennady, I know you can’t force the other middleweights to get in the ring with you; all you can do is just entertain. Do you feel kind of obligated though to carry the middleweight division right now? Like, you’re the guy that everyone’s going to look to as the one middleweight that will fight everyone.

Gennady Golovkin: Yes. I want to fight to unify the titles. For me, it’s very important who’s number one; who’s best in the world in the middleweight division.

Q. Yes. This is a question for Tom. You said in your intro that you thought fans were yearning for some excitement after what had happened Saturday. As a promoter, is there any fear of a backlash in the business? And what I guess would serve as a follow-up as Gennady is poised to be maybe the next face of boxing, maybe he can capture some of the crossover fans. Will that be harder to do now?

Tom Loeffler: I don’t think there’ll be a backlash. I think it’ll make fans appreciate Gennady’s style more when they see what he actually brings into the ring with him. He always tries to-Abel trains him in a style to provide excitement, to provide value for the fans, and I think the fans will appreciate instead of having to buy this fight on pay-per-view, they’ll get to see it on HBO, and they’ll see an entertaining show with Chocolatito as the co-feature, with Gennady, and Willie Monroe Jr. in the main event. I think it’s a great matchup of styles, and I think it’ll be a challenge to see if Gennady keeps his knockout streak alive and that’s what fans have really come to appreciate.

They know every time they come to see Gennady fight live, every time he’s fought, whether it’s Danny Geale, or whether it’s Marco Antonio Rubio at the StubHub Center last year. I mean, they’ve seen an exciting fight, and I think you’ll see the same type of fight, and interesting matchup coming this Saturday on May 16th at The Forum.

Q. Alright. Abel, same question?

Abel Sanchez: I think that we owe it to the fans to provide entertainment. I’ve said from the beginning that I wanted Gennady to be the kind of guy that you look forward to leaving home/work early on Saturday night to be able to watch all the pre-stuff in the fight to see more about Gennady. I wanted him to be that kind of individual inside the ring, not so much outside the ring, but I think that we’re getting to that point now.

Willie presents the next test. Hopefully, after Willie, if everything goes well on the 16th, and Willie cooperates, we can have a bigger name, but right now it’s Willie in front of us, and we’re going to put on that show, or Gennady’s going to put on that show to make sure that the fans go away with a smile on their face and hoping to find out when he fights again.

Q. Andy Lee against Kid Chocolate turned into a draw. You’ve got Miguel Cotto, who’s just kind of out there looking for that big fight. Do you want to stay at middleweight because you’ve said that you would drop down, and obviously the big fight that I think if we could all snap our fingers and make it happen is you and Mayweather? Would you move down a little bit at a catch weight or will we see you moving up, perhaps, to go for the super middleweight title?

Gennady Golovkin: Yes. Right now, my focus is on 160. My goal is to hold all the belts. Absolutely, I hope for a big fight with Miguel because he has the WBC title, I have the WBC interim belt, and of course I want a unification fight with Andy Lee. I think he’s ready and, of course, my dream fight is against Floyd.

Q. Good morning on the West Coast, everybody. Tom, this question is for you, and it’s a bit of a follow-up about the promoter’s job in the wake of Mayweather vs. Pacquiao. With casual fans, perhaps, grumbling about the lack of action, do you think that was a net-win or a net-plus overall for the sport of boxing with the enormous attention on that fight? And, does that change your approach two weeks in the wake of this enormous media onslaught and attention to boxing?

Tom Loeffler: I think the exposure to boxing was a net-win for it. I think fans might have been disappointed that paid a lot of money to actually see it live, or maybe on the pay-per-view; that’s where you really saw the disappointment of the fans. But, I think, again, when you see somebody that’s exposed to the sport of boxing and then they follow-up two weeks later or even one week later. You’ve got Canelo coming up this weekend, also on HBO, and then two weeks later you have Gennady coming back to the ring, it just creates more of an appreciation for those fans that are exposed to the sport for having an exciting fight in the ring.

Q. And on the follow-up, how do you exploit, for lack of a better word, that attention and make sure they’re still around two weeks later to see what we on the call all know would be a very different and highly entertaining contest?

Tom Loeffler: Well, we just try to put on the best shows. When Gennady fought last year at the StubHub, we had Nonito Donaire, and Nicholas Walters as the co-feature, and with this fight we have “Chocolatito” Gonzales against Edgar Sosa, also as a co-feature, so we just try to provide value for the fans. They’ve responded by buying tickets and Gennady had the biggest selling fight ever at the StubHub Center, and there have been many champions who have fought there before, and his ratings continue to reflect that.

So it’s just packaging value for the fans, and it’s just the more people that appreciate the sport of boxing that are exposed to it and then they all have a better sense of when you have an exciting fighter that gets into the ring, and at some point they’ll choose whether they buy a ticket or tune in to different styles.

And I think Gennady’s proven that he provides excitement and every time somebody tunes in or buys a ticket to his fight, they always come away with a sense of excitement, and he brings a lot of fans to the sport, new fans that have never actually been to a boxing match before that came to StubHub, or when he fought in New York in Madison Square Garden. They came specifically to see Gennady and that’s a breath of fresh air for the boxing fans.

Q. Okay. Quick question for you, Abel, first. Gennady has one of the best knockout percentage ratios in the boxing game right now. My question for you is sometimes he doesn’t get credit for his excellent footwork. Is there anything else, specifically, that you’ve found, or that you’ve kind of sharpened in fight camp with him these last few weeks prior to the fight with Willie Monroe?

Abel Sanchez: Well, every training camp that we go into we set aside a couple things that we’re going to concentrate on for the particular fight we have coming up. For Willie, we have a couple things that we’re working on to combat some of his, not only movement, but also the way he tries to be slick.

So, hopefully the reason for that is hopefully in ten, twelve fights, we covered a lot of the areas that need to be covered to improve his game. Gennady’s a student of the game. Gennady loves learning new things, Gennady’s always paying attention, so it’s easy to show him something and to ask for him to do something and he repeats it. Max and I, his brother Max and I will talk about what it is that we want him to do and then Gennady executes it the way we want it.

Fortunately, for this camp we had two very good sparring partners in Julius Jackson and Raymond Gatica that provided us that canvas for Gennady to practice some of the things that we’re trying to improve on for this fight.

Q. Was anything different now fighting a southpaw that you felt like you had to kind of enhance or work on a little more?

Abel Sanchez: Oh, absolutely. Willie Monroe’s not a standard southpaw. He’s very slick. He has very good wheels, so it’s going to be a process of trying to cut him off and practicing that in the gym to be able to cut him off and react to the situations, so he’s done it very well. He’s adapted very well to what we wanted for this particular fight, in addition to the things that we were doing in the past. So we’re looking forward to a great night.

Q. Okay. My question to you is, is it a little frustrating for you sometimes, I know you fight four times a year, more or less, give or take, you try to stay active. Is it frustrating for you sometimes when you start to see some of these guys like Miguel Cotto, he’s able-and you want to try to get to fight some of these really good guys, and sometimes it’s difficult for you? How do you stay focused knowing that you want to fight some of these really great champions, and it’s a little difficult for you?

I know that you say sometimes you’re into the Mexican fighters, and so I’m assuming that you want to emulate their greatness.

Gennady Golovkin: I kind of just see my situation now as just I’m ready. You know you’re right, absolutely, that’s not my focus. My focus is on who is number one in the middleweight division. It doesn’t matter how many fights per year, five, six, I remember, like Chavez Sr., a lot of great champions, every second month he had a big fight. For me, right now I’m ready for big fight, I’m ready. I know I have just maybe couple years, maybe three years, maybe four years, I’m ready for six fights per year. I’m ready for anybody.

Q. Is Chavez your favorite Mexican fighter?

Gennady Golovkin: Yes. Chavez, Sr. is. I love great champions from Mexico. I like Chavez Sr.’s style, like moving, and the strategy, I like this. I like the style because he will fight anybody and anytime. It may only be five, six, seven times per year. Same for me, I’m ready.

Q. So, is that why you try to fight as often as you do?

Gennady Golovkin: Absolutely, yes.

Bernie Bahrmasel: We’re going to wrap up Gennady Golovkin’s side. Tom, if you want to make some closing comments, and tell the media where their readers can get tickets?

Tom Loeffler: Absolutely. Again we’re all excited about Gennady coming back to Southern California May 16th against Willie Monroe Jr. It’ll be at The “Fabulous” Forum. It’s a great building that’s event better since it was renovated. It has such a great history of legendary fights being held there and now with this fight card coming to the L.A. area, I think we’ll see a great turnout. We priced the tickets for the fans starting at the $30 and they are available at TheForum.com, and also at TicketMaster.com. Gennady’s last fight in LA sold out, so we advise the fans to buy their tickets early so they don’t run into the same problem last time when there was no tickets available.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Abel, do you want to give the media some closing comments before we get back to training?

Abel Sanchez: Absolutely. I’d like to thank them for their support and their calls and their questions. Make sure that you tune in and see another great fight from Gennady on his way to superstardom.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Thanks very much, Abel. Gennady, any more comments before you go back to training today?

Gennady Golovkin: Thank you very much, everybody. Thank you very much for support. Thank you very much for attention. It is really important for my team, for my career, and I promise great show, great events, just welcome to my Big Drama Show. Thank you.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Thanks very much, Gennady. Thanks very much, Abel. At this time for the media, it is my pleasure to introduce Artie Pelullo from Banner Promotions, who will introduce Team Monroe. Go ahead, Artie.

Artie Pelullo: Hi, guys. Hello. Good morning to everybody. I guess the opening statement that I would like to make is I would like to thank Gennady Golovkin and Tom Loeffler for giving Willie Monroe this opportunity. As we all know, Willie is number two in the world, and the reason why we’re here is because of how well he did in 2014 by winning four fights in a row, including the tournament that ESPN had the ability and the foresight to put on called Boxcino. And then Willie came back and then won a unanimous decision after winning the tournament against Bryan Vera, which now has put him in the status to challenge the best middleweight in the world, and it’s going to be a very interesting fight.

It’s a fight that we believe we can win. Most people don’t think Willie can win the fight, but we do; that’s why we took it. And it’s going to be a terrific fight, and I think Gennady is going to be in for a very difficult fight with a very good fighter who can do things that nobody who’s fought Gennady has done before.

So, I just want to say thank you to Gennady because it’s a voluntary fight, and he said he wanted to fight a tough guy who is a southpaw and this is the best southpaw out there. And Tom Loeffler’s a very good guy, a friend of ours and mine, not ours, mine, and has been able to make this deal rather quickly.

I want to thank HBO for also for putting the fight on because Peter Nelson who buys the fight for HBO realized that this is going to be a very compelling match, and back then to my opening statement. I want to thank everybody. Bernie, you’re doing a good job, and then now what Bernie. I guess, where’s this-is Willie on the line?

Willie Monroe Jr.: Yes, I’m here.

Artie Pellulo: Go ahead, Willie.

Willie Monroe Jr.: I’m just grateful. I’m grateful for the opportunity. Thanks to Banner Promotions for putting me in the position to fight for the middleweight world championship against the greatest middleweight in the world at this time, and I’m blessed. So, thanks to Banner Promotions, and ESPN Boxcino and HBO. Thank you.

Artie Pellulo: Tony, would you like to say a few words?

Tony Morgan: Yes. How you all doing? I just want to say we’re glad to have the opportunity. Thanks to Tom Loeffler, Banner Promotions, HBO for giving us this opportunity to do what we do. Thank you.

Q. Hi, Willie. In your opening remarks, you referred to Gennady Golovkin, saying you’d be grateful to fight for the middleweight championship against the fighter known as the greatest middleweight of his time. I just want to know if you believe that Gennady is the best middleweight out there today.

Willie Monroe Jr.: I mean, what he’s done is he’s proven himself. And he’s widely known as the best middleweight out there, so you can’t argue with it, and obviously, I’m up there around two or number three, so that’s why I’m thankful for this fight. So, I can’t chop the man down. I won’t sit up here and chop him down because once I win, then I’ll be chopping myself.

Q. Right. Okay. Do you believe there’s any fight that you’ve had, leading into this, that can prepare you? I mean, obviously, Gennady’s better than everyone you’ve fought, but is there any particular style that you’ve faced that prepares you for what to expect next Saturday?

Willie Monroe Jr.: I think my whole career from the amateurs all the way up to now has prepared me for this opportunity. I mean I had 142 amateur fights, I’m a three time national champion.

I fought in Boxcino-I mean, Gennady is a little bit of a mixture of everyone I fought in Boxcino all the way up to Bryan Vera. So I think this is the pinnacle, and it’s my job to go in and do what I do best.

Q. Hi, guys. Thanks for taking the time to do the call. Appreciate it. The question is for trainer Tony Morgan. Tony, you were in the news recently, a slight misstep it looks like. I’m not sure the situation and specifics, but I’m wondering has there been any interruption in training, and has that affected things at all, and how’s the relationship with you guys? And, how’s training going?

Tony Morgan: Flawless. We don’t have any issues. Everything is in the hands of my attorneys with my situation. The situation here is just training camp and that’s-we’re going to go through and do what we do, and put the pieces of the puzzle together, and solve the puzzle that nobody seems to be able to do.

Q.: Hi, Tony. It’s also the question for the trainer. We all think that this fight will be about speed versus power, and power on the side of Gennady, obviously, and the speed, which is supposed to prevent him to knockout his punches will supposed to be the number one most important thing for your fighter, for Willie. How do you see the fight? Are we wrong? Are we right? Give us a little bit, a glimpse of what we can expect from Willie in this fight.

Tony Morgan: I think the fight will truly be won by ring intelligence. I think what we bring to the table is something Gennady’s never seen and realistically can’t prepare for. I mean, there’s really only one Willie Monroe. There’s two guys, maybe three that mimic his style that is very fast, very elusive.

Willie had a lot of knockouts in the amateurs, not saying Willie always goes in there to be a big puncher, but I think people are going to be surprised as they were with Bryan Vera. I think it’s going to be a big surprise for a lot of people, not for us, but for everybody else.

Q.: And one more question, this time for Willie. All those talks, all those bets around Las Vegas and all over the world from 60:1 to 80:1 for Golovkin is just bulletin board material for you? Do you need extra motivation? Do you use this as extra motivation or are you just pushing this all information about you being basically-you basically lost already before you went into the ring? You just don’t pay attention to it?

Willie Monroe Jr.: I mean, after this fight is over, and I’m the new WBA champion, I will tell you guys a little story, and give you guys a little insight on my personal life, but I say that to say this. I’ve been the underdog since I was conceived in my mother’s womb, and I mean that literally; that’s not a figure of speech. I mean that literally.

So, being an underdog is what I relish because those are the moments where I rise to the occasion and do-sometimes I surprise myself with how good I do, so I’m in my element. If I was the favorite, then I’d be a little worried, but being the underdog is what I actually relish because it motivates me to do what I need to do.

Everybody’s different. Some people need to be encouraged and told that they’re the best, to be the best, and some people need to be told that you can’t do it, so they can go out there and prove that they can. And I’m one of those people that’s always looking to prove people wrong.

Q. Alright. So, of course this is the biggest fight of your career and being the fact that boxing has probably been in the best shape that it’s been in quite a while, how do you feel about being part of boxing’s future, going forward?

Willie Monroe Jr.: It’s a blessing. This is something that we’ve said since I turned pro. My trainer’s always said I will resurrect boxing; I will bring back the true essence of boxing and being articulate, inside as well as outside of the ring.

Well now, I think the timing is perfect. I mean, it’s a blessing for me. I’m blessed, and I’m elated to have this opportunity and this is just the beginning.

At the end of the day, it’s all about what I do. I mean, it doesn’t matter the pedigree or where you come from or what the name is, it’s all about how you apply yourself and what you do in the ring and what you do in training camp leading up to the fight. So, I really try not to live off what my dad and my uncle did. I’m creating my own legacy, and my own right, and as of right now, I’ve made it further than both of them already.

So, it’s really nothing for me to do me and be me.

Q. Alright. Thanks for taking my call. This question is for Willie. From looking at you, you are a boxer, a very slick guy, and a lot of technical skill. Who did you look up to? Who do you pattern your style after, in terms of as a fighter?

Willie Monroe Jr.: My two favorite fighters, premier fighters are the champions, Roy Jones, Jr., and Sugar Ray Leonard. Anybody who was fast and very elusive and could do things physically that other fighters just can’t pull off, and do it in such a pretty fashion. Those are the guys that I look up to.

Hector “Macho” Camacho Sr., Pernell Whitaker, all of those guys that were special, physically and mentally special. So those are the guys that I like to watch all the time and emulate.

Q. Thank you very much, and hi, everybody. Willie, it was right before you were going into training camp, you were on with myself and Gerry Cooney. You said you were very confident about this fight. How did training camp go and how do you feel?

Willie Monroe Jr: Training camp’s good. Training camp’s great. I’m more confident now that we’re in tiptop shape, but I mean everything is good. Everything is good. This is the fight I’ve wanted. This is the fight I said I wanted right after Boxcino.

A lot of people are insinuating that oh, you must be getting paid a lot of money. I mean, this is the fight I asked for. When all the blogs and different interviews, they asked me what middleweight would you like to fight? I said Gennady Golovkin. I mean, he’s the best. So, you either go hard or go home.

So, I mean, everything’s good. Camp is great. I’m having fun. I mean, just ask yourself who is my trainer, then you know how good training camp is going. I got the best trainer in the world.

Q. Okay, and let’s see, let’s go back to upsets, Leon Spinks over Muhammad Ali, Buster Douglas over Mike Tyson. This is really going to be looked at because GGG is certainly in the top two or three pound for pound in the world. If you win this fight, it’s going to be one of the biggest upsets over the last 30 years or so. How do you look at it?

Willie Monroe Jr.: I look at it the same way, and you have to. I mean, look what he’s accomplished as a fighter; 19 straight knockouts. He made his American debut in 2012, and he’s knocked out everybody thus far. And I mean like why wouldn’t you want to take that cloak of invincibility from somebody? And, I mean, I’m the one that can do it.

But, I mean, once the bell rings, and on May 16th nobody can get in there and fight for him, nobody can get in there and fight for me, it’s all about what we apply and what we adjust to that night and may the best man win.

Q. You got it. Final question. Were you disappointed in the big fight the other night, Mayweather and Pacquiao?

Willie Monroe Jr.: Not really because I knew it was going to be like that. It’s one of those stylistically matchups where you just kind of know what’s going to happen, and I’m glad it’s done and over with, so people can stop talking.

Q. Thank you very much. This is a question for Tony. Tony, I’m not going to ask you to give away any of your training secrets before the fight, but you did mention-there was a mention in the lead up that you’re going to be bringing something different to the fight. Let me put it in these terms. In watching Golovkin’s previous opponents, did you identify any mistakes that you think Willie can correct in this fight?

Tony Morgan: I think that Golovkin makes a lot of mistakes. I think he’s beatable. I think any guy’s beatable if you bring the right plan to the table, but yeah, we’re going to capitalize on his mistakes and I don’t want to say we’re going to expose him because he is a great fighter, but we’re going to expose Willie. We’re going to expose what Willie really is, and what he’s really capable of doing.

Q. And Tony, on your follow-up to the question, and that’s a great answer. The question was actually aimed at Golovkin’s opponents and their mistakes that you might be able now to avoid? So, have you looked and seen that the Geale’s and the Murray’s and the Macklin’s of the world, did they do anything that you think you and Willie can avoid?

Tony Morgan: One hundred percent, all of them are pretty much all flat-footed and all of them stand in front of Golovkin. Sooner or later, he gets people to stand in front of him. I don’t think he’s going to be able to capitalize on anything that he’s used to doing because he’s never fought anybody the caliber of Willie Monroe.

I’m not saying that we beat everybody who is out there. We don’t have a name like he does, but the style that Willie presents is a style that’s imitated by no one, really.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Artie, we’re going to go ahead and wrap up the call if you want to make your closing comments and have Tony and Willie join you, that would be fantastic.

Artie Pelullo: Sure. Listen, once again, I want to thank everybody for giving Willie the opportunity. I think Tony and Willie said it right, and we all know that it’s going to be a great fight. We’re going to win the fight, and that’s how much confidence we have in Willie’s ability. But if it wasn’t for Tom Loeffler and Gennady Golovkin and HBO giving Willie this opportunity, we wouldn’t be here.

So, I want to say thank you to everybody. We’re going to be out there off all week, so there’s a lot going on. Willie will be available to do interviews one on one, there’ll be an open workout, and just want to thank everybody for having us and it’s going to be a great show. It’s going to be a very good fight. It’s going to be much more than people realize what Willie can do, and it’s going to be a great show, and I think that Gennady Golovkin knows that, and I think he’s taking it very seriously.

So, once again, thank you, everybody, and I’ll turn it over to Willie and then Tony. Go ahead, Willie.

Willie Monroe Jr.: I’m just thankful for this opportunity and like Artie eluded to, you have to thank GGG and his camp for taking this fight and for giving Willie an opportunity, myself, Willie Monroe, an opportunity to tango with the best, and I’m happy, so thanks Tom Loeffler, thanks team GGG. And an even bigger thanks to my team for believing in me and putting in the work the last seven weeks. May 16th is show time.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Go ahead, Tony.

Tony Morgan: I just want to say thanks for all the support, thanks for GGG’s team for allowing us to get this opportunity, thanks for Artie, and Banner Promotions, and we’re going to go out and do what we do. We win, that’s what we do, so I just want to say thanks and thanks for the interview and appreciate the publicity.

Bernie Bahrmasel: Thanks very much, gentlemen. Again, this is going to be a tremendous fight. This is the best middleweight in the world against a fighter who’s truly earned this opportunity to fight him. And we look forward to seeing all the media in Los Angeles next week, and we look forward to everybody watching the fight on May 16th on HBO. Thanks very much, everyone.

GOLOVKIN VS. MONROE FIGHT INFO:
Gennady Golovkin vs. Willie Monroe is a 12-round middleweight world championship bout presented by K2 Promotions and GGG Promotions in association with Banner Promotions and the Forum. The fight will take place Saturday, May 16 at the Forum in Inglewood, CA. Doors open at 4:30 p.m. PT and the first bout starts at 4:45 p.m. PT., the HBO World Championship Boxing telecast begins at 10:00 p.m. ET/PT.

Golovkin, 32-0 (29KO’s) will be defending his World Boxing Association, International Boxing Organization and “Interim” World Boxing Council Middleweight World Titles against #2 ranked challenger Monroe,
19-1-0 (6KO’s).

Co-featured on the telecast is 12-round junior flyweight matchup between World Boxing Council Champion ROMAN “Chocolatito” GONZALEZ, 42-0 (36KO’s) and #2 ranked challenger and former world champion EDGAR SOSA, 51-8-0 (30KO’s).

Advance tickets, priced at $300, $200, $100, $60 and $30, are now on-sale through Ticketmaster (Ticketmaster.com, 1-800-745-3000) and the Forum Box Office.

GOLOVKIN vs. MONROE is presented by K2 Promotions and GGG Promotions in association with Banner Promotions and the Forum.

Co-featured on the telecast is an outstanding Junior Flyweight matchup between World Boxing Council Champion ROMAN “Chocolatito” GONZALEZ and #2 ranked challenger and former world champion EDGAR SOSA.

GONZALEZ vs. SOSA is presented by K2 Promotions and Teiken Promotions in association with Zanfer Promotions.

SOCIAL MEDIA: For more information, visit www.K2Promos.com, www.GGGBoxing.com, www.Banner-Promotions.com, www.FabulousForum.com and www.HBO.com/boxing.

Follow on Twitter at Gennady Golovkin @GGGBoxing, Willie Monroe Jr. @WillieMonroeJr, Roman Gonzalez @ChocolatitoBox, Edgar Sosa @EdgarSosaChamp, Tom Loeffler/K2 Promotions @TomLoeffler1, Banner Promotions @BannerBoxing, the Forum @theForum and HBO Boxing @HBOBoxing and become a fan on Facebook www.facebook.com/GGGBoxing, www.facebook.com/WilieMonroeJrFanPage,
www.facebook/BannerPromotions, www.facebook.com/TheForum and www.facebook.com/HBOBoxing.

Use the hashtags #GolovkinMonroe and #GonzalezSosa to join the conversation on Twitter.

Alyson DeRenzis wins Boxcino Bracket Challenge

POSTED ON Wednesday, May 6, 2015  - POSTED IN Boxcino, Events, Fights, News

Philadelphia, PA (May 6, 2015)– Banner Promotions is pleased to announce that Alyson DeRenzis has taken first place in the Boxcino Bracket Challenge.

Alyson will take home the grand prize of two ringside tickets to the Boxcino finals that will take place on May 22 in Corona, California, a full roundtrip for two to the finals, complete with a hotel stay and meals for two, as well as a guest invitation to the pre-fight weigh in and post fight press conference. Alyson will also receive two Boxcino t-shirts.

The runner-up is Matt Andrzejewski. Matt will have two tickets to the finals and two Boxcino t-shirts.

Banner Promotions would like to thank all contestants for their interest and participation!

Boxcino 2015 Finals on ESPN “Friday Night Fights” May 22, Corona, CA

POSTED ON Tuesday, May 5, 2015  - POSTED IN Boxcino, Events, Fights, News

ORANGE, Calif. (May 5, 2015) – Junior middleweight Brandon Adams (16-1, 12 KOs) is returning to a familiar situation. After coming up short in last year’s Boxcino finals and suffering the only loss of his career, the Los Angeles-native dropped down one weight class and fought his way back to the 10-round championship fight.

Adams faces the smooth boxing skills of John Thompson (16-1, 5 KOs) of Newark, New Jersey on Friday, May 22, from the Omega Products Outdoor Arena in Corona, Calif. in the Boxcino 2015 junior middleweight championship.

The Boxcino Finals is televised on ESPN’s “Friday Night Fights” (ESPN2 9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) and is co-promoted through Arthur Pelullo’s Banner Promotions and Ken Thompson’s Thompson Boxing Promotions.

“Everything is good, training is going well,” Brandon Adams said. “I’m still in shape from my last fight and I’m coming to get what is mine. I’m going to put on a performance that will make everyone proud.”

“My training camp has been great,” John Thompson said. “I’ve been working hard, staying hungry. I have one day on my mind and that is May 22nd.”

Tickets for the Boxcino Finals are priced at $50, $70, & $100, and are available for purchase online at ThompsonBoxing.com or by calling 714-935-0900.

In the co-feature, heavyweight talents Donovan Dennis (14-2, 11 KOs) of Cleveland, Ohio and Andrey Fedosov (27-3, 22 KOs) of Russia will meet in a 10-round fight to determine the Boxcino 2015 heavyweight champion.

Dennis and Fedosov have electrified the crowds leading up to the tournament finals. They both showed off their freight train like power by knocking out their respective opponents in the Boxcino quarter and semifinals.

“I’ve been in Los Angeles for training camp, getting good sparring,” Donovan Dennis said. “I know Andrey will be ready, and so will I.”

“I’m glad that I’ve made it into the finals of this great tournament on ESPN,” Andrey Fedosov said. “I’m training very hard in Los Angeles and I’m confident that I will win the fight.”

“I’m looking forward to the Boxcino finals,” said Artie Pelullo, president of Banner Promotions. “The finals will be terrific with two exciting and compelling fights.”

“We couldn’t be anymore excited to be a part of this wonderful tournament that has a long history of producing boxing stars,” said Ken Thompson, president of Thompson Boxing. “All four boxers understand what’s on the line, and I’m positive they’ll come out hungry and put on a tremendous boxing showcase.”

Additional information on the undercard will be announced shortly.

The Omega Products Outdoor Arena is located at 1681 California Ave., Corona, CA 92881 and can be reached at 951-737-7447. Doors open at 5:45 p.m. PT and the first bout begins at 6:15 p.m. PT.

For additional information please visit www.banner-promotions.com & ThompsonBoxing.com and. For regular updates on our fighters, events, and promotions, please check our Facebook page, and follow us on Twitter and Instagram @bannerboxing and @ThompsonBoxing.

Once again, Provodnikov a hit with television viewers

POSTED ON Wednesday, April 22, 2015  - POSTED IN Events, Fights, News

Philadelphia, PA (April 22, 2015)–For his fourth consecutive fight on HBO, “The Siberian Rocky” Ruslan Provodnikov garnered over 1 million viewers.Ruslan’s fight with Lucas Matthysse averaged 1.243 million viewers and peaked at an outstanding 1.380 million viewers for the clash, which is now a leading candidate for 2015 Fight of the Year.

The bout comes on the heels of Provodnikov’s three previous appearances on the network, where he drew 1.2 million (peaked at 1.4 million) for his 2013 Fight of The Year with Timothy Bradley; his WBO title winning effort against Mike Alvarado that drew 1.232 Million viewers; and his controversial split decision loss to Chris Algieri which drew 1.046 million and peaked 1.1 million viewers.

“Ruslan again showed he is a huge attraction,” said Banner Promotions President Artie Pelullo. “He is without a doubt the most entertaining fighter in boxing today, and it is proven by the ratings for every one of his fights.”

John Thompson reflects on Boxcino semifinal win and looks forward towards the final on May 22

POSTED ON Wednesday, April 22, 2015  - POSTED IN Boxcino, Events, Fights, News

Newark, NJ (April 21, 2015)– John “Apollo Kidd” Thompson has begun preparations for his May 22 Boxcino final bout against Brandon Adams. (17-1, 12 KO’s).

The fight will take place on Friday, May 22 in Corona, California and will live on ESPN Friday Night Fights.

Thompson is in Virginia, training under Kay Koroma and he is looking to win the prestigious tournament against Thompson in the 10-round bout at the Omega Products International Outdoor Arena in Corona, California.

Thompson (16-1, 5 KO’s) is coming off a 8-round split decision over previously undefeated Stanyslav Skorokhod on April 10 in Bethlehem, PA.

“I outboxed the guy,” said Thompson. I focused on what I needed to focus on and that was using my jab. I also focused on not to exchange and bang with him and I did a pretty good job of that.”

“As well as I fought, I do not think that was even my best win.”

Now he looks towards Adams. Adams of Los Angeles has experience in the Boxcino finals as his only loss was to Willie Monroe Jr. in last year’s Middleweight finals.

“I am happy to be in the finals. This is an opportunity that will be the uprising of my career,” continued Thompson.

“Brandon is a brawler. He will have a few weeks to come up with a strategy to beat me.”

Said Thompson’s promoter, Vito Mielnicki of GH3 Promotions, “I believe we are longer, been in tougher and the better boxer. Brandon is a good fighter but I think he is too green. I know he had a brief amateur career and he could be too green for John.”

GH3 Promotions features undefeated Middleweight Antoine Douglas, Super Middleweight’s Jerry Odom & Derrick Webster, undefeated Super Bantamweight Adam Lopez as well as Jr. Middleweight John Thompson, Jr., undefeated Welterweight Jerrell Harris,undefeated Super Bantamweight Qa’id Muhammad, undefeated lightweight Oscar Bonilla and Light Heavyweight Lavarn Harvell to the GH3 Promotions stable.

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