PROVIDENCE, R.I. – According to Joseph “Chip” Perez, it all started when Chazz McDowell called him out a couple of years ago.
McDowell (6-2, 1 KO) says it never happened. Perez (9-1, 3 KOs) says he’s got proof.
“I still have the newspaper article,” Perez said. “I save everything.”
Now the 25-year-old junior lightweight from East Hartford, Conn., will save the rest of his talking for the ring when he and McDowell face one another for the vacant New England title Thursday, October 18th, 2012 in the eight-round main event of Jimmy Burchfield’s Classic Entertainment & Sports’ “Closing Statement” boxing event at the Twin River Event Center in Lincoln, R.I.
A fight that has been years in the making between two Connecticut natives will finally become a reality Thursday night as Perez and McDowell put it all on the line in their first title bout.
“What I see and hear is he keeps coming forward. He’s a slugger – nowhere near a boxer,” said McDowell, a Hartford native who also lives and trains in Yonkers, N.Y. “He’s going to see a boxer [on Thursday night]. What I’m going to do is outbox him and just outclass him. He just keeps coming forward and gets frustrated a lot. I’m looking to frustrate him and make him mad.
“Honestly, I’m looking at this as an easy fight.”
“I don’t really have much to say,” Perez countered. “You’ll see at the fight. He doesn’t impress me at all, to be honest. He’s a pretty slick fighter – fast and sharp – and he definitely comes to fight. All the talking, he’s said the same things in his previous fights and we all saw the outcome. I’m not one to talk. I’m ready to fight.”
Perez is coming off a hard-fought win in July over veteran Johnny Frazier, whom he knocked out at the end of the fourth round, while McDowell is looking to rebound from a close, unanimous-decision loss to unbeaten super featherweight Emanuel Gonzalez, a fight in which McDowell said he was deducted a point in the opening round for an inadvertent low blow.
“They had it in for me from the start,” McDowell said “The scorecards were horrible.”
For Perez, the fight against Frazier might’ve been the toughest of his career. They exchanged blows throughout the first three rounds until Perez knocked Frazier down and out at the bell to end the fourth – his first knockout since November of 2010.
“Those fights get you hyped,” Perez said, “because training camp is rough and you go through hell, so when you see the fighter you’re facing get excited, you get excited, too. It definitely gets me more hyped up to step in there.”
Training camp has been even more intense this time around, especially since this is not only Perez’s first eight-round fight, but his first time headlining a major show as well.
“I’m excited,” he said. “I’ve trained really hard. It’s been a real intense training camp. With the way things have gone, I’d be ready for 12 rounds if it was a 12-round fight. This fight is a huge stepping stone for me in my career.”
McDowell has been working with various sparring partners, including undefeated Newburgh, N.Y., featherweight Patrick Hyland, to emulate Perez’s style.
“This is a huge fight for me,” McDowell said. “It will get me back to where I need to be. I want to be a world champion and I want the world to recognize my talents.”
Both fighters have dreams of winning world titles, but first must get through one another Thursday night in what will be the ultimate grudge match, not only because of how evenly-matched the fight is inside the ring, but because of the bad blood that has been brewing behind the scenes.
“There’s been a lot of talk,” McDowell said. “He said I called him out, which is not true. I did an interview and they made it seem like something it’s not. I’ve never said anything bad about him. Our names popped up together a couple of times. Now it’s a reality.”
The two actually came face-to-face last month at a pep rally in Rhode Island to promote the event, but both kept their cool as they promised to put on a show for the hometown fans.
“That was the first time I saw him in person,” Perez recalled. “When he called me out, I found out who he was. I looked him up. I got some information. I figured we’d meet up someday. That’s why I was never in a rush. I knew this day would come sooner than later, and I’m glad it came when it did.
“I’m happy he’s confident and talking the way he is. I want to beat him at his best.”
In the end, both fighters realize these are the kind of fights that can help build a career – the fights that need to happen in order to become legitimate title contenders.
“I’m ready for whatever,” Perez said. “My whole career, all I’ve been fighting is tough fighters and I’ve been getting the ‘W.’ It hasn’t been a walk in the park. These are the fights I have to take to get to where I want to be.”
Tickets for “Closing Statement ” are $40.00, $75.00 and $125.00 (VIP) and can be purchased by calling CES at 401.724.2253/2254, online at www.cesboxing.com or www.twinriver.com , at the Players Club booth at Twin River, or through any TicketMaster location. Doors open 6 p.m. with the first bout scheduled for 7.
“Closing Statement” also features two highly-anticipated rematches. Providence, R.I., super middleweight Alex Amparo (4-0, 2 KOs) and Nick Lavin (2-3, 2 KOs) of Shelton, Conn., will face another again almost one year to the date of their first showdown in October of 2011, a fight Amparo won by majority decision, 39-37, 38-37, 38-38, at Twin River. Providence female bantamweight Shelito Vincent (4-0) will face Ivana Coleman (0-1) in a four-round rematch after beating Coleman unanimously in July.
Hard-hitting heavyweight Alexis Santos (6-0, 5 KOs) of Lawrence, Mass., will put his undefeated record on the line against Providence’s Josh Harris (8-6-1, 6 KOs). Former The Contender reality television star Rich Gingras (11-3, 7 KOs) of Attleboro, Mass., returns to face veteran Dennis Ogboo (7-5, 6 KOs) of Lexington, Ky., in a four-round light heavyweight bout and newcomers Jon Smith of Cranston, R.I., a former three-time New England Golden Gloves champion, and Dinis Paiva Jr. of East Providence, R.I., who has five professional mixed martial arts fights under his belt, will square off in a four-round welterweight bout.
“The Vermont Bully” Kevin Cobbs (5-0, 1 KO) of Burlington, Vt., will look to keep his perfect record intact when he faces tough veteran Alexander Mancera (8-4-1, 5 KOs) of Queens, N.Y., in a four-round light heavyweight bout and middleweight Thomas Falowo (7-1, 5 KOs) of Pawtucket, R.I., will battle Ontario, Canada veteran Michael Walchuk (9-6, 2 KOs) in a six-round bout. Woonsocket, R.I., middleweight Joey Gardner (8-5-1, 1 KO) will face Philip Burnette (2-5, 1 KO) of Myrtle Beach, S.C., in a six-round bout. Providence junior lightweight Toka Kahn (2-0, 2 KOs) will also be featured on the undercard in a four-round bout against Jamell Tyson (3-8-2, 1 KO) of Rochester, N.Y.
(Twin River has waived its 18+ rule for “Closing Statement.” Anybody under the age of 18 must be accompanied by an adult and must enter through the West entrance.)
THE Irish Amateur Boxing Association have confirmed two squads – and one box-off – for the Elite Tammer Multi-Nations in Tampere, Finland and the 2012 AIBA World Youth Championships in Yerevan, Armenia.
Olympic silver medallist Ken Egan and European bronze medallists John Joe Joyce and Ross Hickey – Egan has won two European bronze medals – and EU champions David Oliver Joyce and Con Sheehan, Willie McLaughlin, Conrad Cummings and Michael Nevin are included in an 8-man squad in Finland.
Ireland didn’t enter the 2011 Tammer tournament in Tampere, while Hickey beat Belfin Boholist (Philippines) to win gold at the 2010 event.
David Oliver Joyce, Roy Sheahan. Declan Geraghty and Ryan Lindberg claimed a bronze medal each at the 2010 edition.
The Tammer Multi-Nations is the Elite Squad’s first competitive outing since the 2012 Olympic Games in London.
Meanwhile, six of the seven-strong panel for the AIBA World Youth Championships, which begin in Armenia on November 25, have been confirmed.
Keith Flavin, Kurt Walker, Chris Nevin, Hughie Nevin, David Roche and Stephen Mulholland will represent Ireland in Yerevan.
George Boylan and JJ McDonagh meet on Friday week at Dublin’s National Stadium in an all Dublin box-off for the light-heavyweight vest for Armenia.
Ireland claimed two gold, two silver and two bronze medals from the last two AIBA World Youth Championships in Mexico and Azerbaijan in 2008 and 2010
Ray Moylette (gold), Joe Ward (gold), – Moylette and Ward are the current European Senior champions – Jamie Kavanagh (silver), Ryan Burnett (silver), Tommy McCarthy (bronze) and Davey Joe Joyce (bronze) finished in podium positions in Guadalajara and Baku.
Katie Taylor and Michael Gallagher will be presented with their AIBA 2012 World Female Boxer Award and AIBA 2012 World Referee and Judge Award in Yerevan on December 7th.
Irish squad Elite Tammer Multi Nations Tampere, Finland Oct 17th/22nd
56kg: Michael Nevin (Portlaoise)
60kg: David Oliver Joyce (St Michael’s Athy)
64kg: Ross Hickey (Grangecon)
69kg: John Joe Joyce (St MIchael’s Athy)
69kg: Willie McLaughlin (Illies GG)
75kg: Conrad Cummings (Holy Trinity)
81kg: Ken Egan (Neilstown)
91+kg: Con Sheehan (Clonmel)
Team Manager Eanna Green
Coaches: Billy Walsh & Zuar Antia
Team Manager: Eanna Green
Physio: Fionna McCabe
R&J: Larry Durand
Irish Squad AIBA World Youth Championsips Yerevan, Armenia Nov 25th/Dec 8th
49kg: Keith Flavin (Paulstown)
52kg: Kurt Walker (Canal)
56kg: Chris Nevin (Holy Family Drogheda)
60Kg: Hugie Nevin (Cavan)
64kg: David Roche (Riverstown)
69kg: Stephen Mulholland (St Malachys)
81kg: Box off – George Boylan (Drimnagh) v John Joe McDonagh (Crumlin)
Team Manager: Stephen Connolly
Coaches: Billy McClean and Tom Hayes
TRAD TKO’s Johnny Eames Signs More Fighters - Two Heavies and A Light Middle
Just last week Johnny Eames announced the signing of six new youngsters, Super Fly Joe Stevens, Super Bantams Paul Quinn and Andy Gatenby, Light Welter Tommy Martin, Middleweight Festim Lama and Light Heavy Onder Ozgu , to his TRAD TKO Boxing Gym squad.
Today Johnny announces that Heavyweights Damien Campbell and Paulius Kasiulevicius, as well as Light Middleweight Tommy Williams, have also signed to his famous East London fight factory team.
Kilburn’s Damien had an excellent Amateur career, culminating in his reaching the final of the ABAs twice, losing to two of the sports brightest stars David Price in 2005 and Tyson Fury in 2008.
Damien turned pro in 2010, winning his first fight, by a shutout 40-36 points margin, against Lee Swaby at the Doncaster Dome in July of the same year.
He was back in action in October, this time securing a 38-38 points draw with Colin Kenna at the Troxy in London.
Following this fight Damien had a forced sabbatical from the sport, due to an eye problem, and only returned to training a couple of months ago once receiving the all clear.
Like his British compatriot, Lithuanian Paulius also had a first class Amateur career, and also made the finals of his National Amateur competition twice, however Paulius went one better than Damien on both occasions to be crowned double Lithuanian National Heavyweight Champion.
On making the announcement a beaming Johnny said. “Two more big signings, and big being the appropriate word.
First is Paulius Kasiulevicius, double Lithuanian Heavyweight Champion, 22 years of age.
He’s been with us a couple of weeks now, looks like he can really fight and being just twenty two, and with a lot of experience, there’s more than half a chance we can do something big with him.
The other is Damien Campbell, double ABA finalist, beaten by David Price and Tyson Fury, there’s no disgrace in that.
Getting on a bit now, Damien’s 37, so probably have to be fast tracked.
He had to take a couple of years out with an eye problem, but has an all clear now from the board (BBBofC) and is ready to go.
Damien has been up here a couple of years really, was with Bryan Lawrence, but since he’s come back he’s made the switch to the TRAD TKO, and yeah we’re looking forward to seeing him back in action.
The other kid we’ve just signed is Tommy ‘The Albino’ Williams, Light Middleweight, ginger as you like, ugly as you like, certainly wont lose any looks, that’s for definite. He’s a good friend of Danny Connor, which cuts no ice here.
Joking aside, Tommy’s been working with Alec (Wilkey) for a little while now. He’s had twenty odd amateur fights, definitely looks like he can fight and is a very welcome addition to the TRAD TKO squad and we’re all looking forward to watching him fight in the very near future.”
Johnny then changed tack, away from the fighters, to talk briefly on one of the projects he and the TRAD TKO team have been developing over the past months.
“It’s exciting times here at the TRAD TKO, not just with the new signings but also with the other projects we have been working on.
This year already we’ve added an Amateur Boxing Club, TRAD TKO ABC and TKO Educational, which helps troubled youngsters from the area.
Within the next couple of weeks there is going to be a major, major announcement from us in the office, myself and Rio (TRAD TKO publicist Gianluca Di Caro) concerning our promotional outfit - TKO Events International – which will be breaking water, so to speak, in early 2013.
Hence the reason we’re trying to sign a big group of fighters to fill our shows, not necessarily for the top of the bill, although if we get fighters who can top the bill, then they’ll top the bill.
As it stands at the moment though, we’ll probably bring in top fighters to head up the bill and fill the undercard with fighters from the gym.
It’s exciting times and we’re all looking forward to it, and as I said before, watch this space because there’s going to be a major, major announcement as with regards to our promotional arm.”
New York - Legendary fight judge and HBO's unofficial ringside scorer Harold Lederman will bring his judging expertise to the theater. Lederman will be one of the judges in the short film category for the upcoming Shadow Box Film Festival.
"Harold Lederman is a boxing legend and one of the best judges in the world," said Shadow Box Film Festival director David Schuster. "We are looking forward to Harold's participation in selecting the best short films in this special showcase."
Lederman began judging pro boxing at the fabled Sunnyside Garden in 1967. In a career that ran through 1999, Lederman judged more than 100 title bouts. He marked the scorecards in bouts that included such greats as Muhammad Ali, Larry Holmes, Roberto Duran, Sugar Ray Leonard, Evander Holyfield, Jeff Fenech and Junior Jones.
"I am very excited to be involved in this festival," said Lederman. "I love boxing films and can't wait to see this year's selections."
The festival is dedicated entirely to boxing and will take place over two days -- Nov. 30 and Dec. 1, 2012 -- at the SVA Theatre at 333 West 23rd Street in New York City.
Two of the featured films scheduled to make their New York City debut are a pair of powerful documentaries. They are "The Good Son," which is based on the recently released book about Ray Mancini and his tragic fight with Duek Koo Kim. The other is a film called "Buffalo Girls," which tells the story of two 9-year-old girls from Thailand who are forced into boxing to help supplement the family income.
WHAT: The Shadow Box Film Festival
WHERE: SVA Theatre, 333 West 23rd Street (8th and 9th Avenues)
WHEN: Friday, November 30 and Saturday, December 1, 2012
EMAIL: [email protected]
FACEBOOK: facebook.com/ ShadowBoxFilmFestival