SAN FRANCISCO - On May 18, undefeated NABO light welterweight champion, Karim "Hard Hitta" Mayfield (15-0-1, 9 KOs), headlines ESPN2 "Friday Night Fights" when he defends his title against Philadelphia's Raymond Serrano (18-0, 8 KOs) at the Exhibition Hall at The Times Union Center in Albany, New York. Joe DeGuardia's Star Boxing in association with Prize Fight Promotions will promote the 10-round bout.
Mayfield, a San Francisco native, is no stranger to fighting on the east coast. Recently, he was in Philadelphia sparring with Danny Garcia in preparation for Garcia's fight with Erik Morales. On October 1, 2011, Mayfield dominated Patrick Lopez (20-5, 12 KOs) winning a unanimous decision to capture the vacant WBO NABO light welterweight title.
"I've been in the ring with Manny Pacquiao, Antonio Margarito, Robert Guerrero and many other world class fighters," Mayfield said. "I know I got the talent to become a world champion. I'm in great shape and I'm always ready to go in case a fight comes up. I've been in the gym working hard and my timing is on point."
"Virgil Hunter, who's one of the best trainers in the world, will be working my corner. He's guided me to victory before and I know together, we'll come up with a masterful game plan."
"This is a big opportunity for Karim to show the world he's an elite fighter," said Prize Fight promoter Brian Young. "This will be the first time Mayfield headlines a nationally televised main event and we believe he has all the talent to become a world champion. If he's victorious, we want to push for a title shot by the end of the year.''
This is a big opportunity for Serrano, who is seeking his first regional title. He'll be fighting close to his hometown of Philadelphia where he's fought most of his career.
"Serrano is a tough guy with a good record and I'll be going into his backyard for this fight," Mayfield said. "But I'm on a mission to get that world title shot and I'm not going to let anyone stop me. I'm just going to keep winning and let my management and promotional teams do their jobs. I'm taking on all comers but my focus right now is strictly on Serrano. I'ts an honor to be fighting as the main-event on ESPN. It's my time to shine."