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Team Oliver in The Dark on Rafael Marquez, But Ready

By Ryan Songalia

When news reports broke that former bantamweight and super bantamweight champ Rafael Marquez would be facing Mike Oliver on June 4 at the Staples Center in Los Angeles, Team Oliver was the last to know.

"I haven't heard from anyone about this fight," said John Scully, long-time trainer of the 24-2 (8 KO) contender from Hartford, Conn.
"No one (has contacted us) at all. I hope someone reads this and does call, but as of this moment, no one has contacted me other than random people who also read about it online."

According to these reports, the bout against the 39-6 (35 KO) Mexico City native Marquez will support the WBC middleweight title matchup between champion Sebastian Zbik and Julio Cesar Chavez Jr., which will be promoted by Top Rank Inc.

Despite the lack of official notice, Scully says Oliver would be ready for the bout by the given date.

"I think there is definitely enough time to prepare for that date, yes. 'Mike-Mike' is already in pretty good shape today because he's been in the gym sparring with some of my other guys and his weight is already low so he could take the remaining time and really focus on a specific game plan for this one particular guy.

"At this point in his career and because of who the opposition is, obviously it all comes down to what kind of offer they plan to make him."

Marquez, 36, who is best known for his bloody four-fight series with Israel Vasquez, hasn't fought since being stopped by Juan Manuel Lopez in eight rounds last November, while the 31-year-old Oliver has won three straight since an 0-2-1 stretch where he was suffered back-to-back knockout defeats.

Oliver hasn't fought since June of last year, where he defeated faded former world champion Mauricio Pastrana by eighth-round disqualification.

Ryan Songalia is a member of the Boxing Writers Association of America (BWAA) and contributes to GMANews.TV and the Filipino Reporter newspaper. He can be reached at [email protected] . An archive of his work can be found at www.ryansongalia.com . Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ryansongalia .

User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by ICEMAN JOHN SCULLY on 04-24-2011

Ps: We want the fight!

Comment by ICEMAN JOHN SCULLY on 04-24-2011

Its been three days and we've still heard NOTHING ...

Comment by Canelo Phresh on 04-24-2011

good read. was wondering about rapha. that lopez rematch will have to wait for salido.

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