Billy Dib Vows To Make A Statement Against Luis Franco

By Jake Donovan

It’s been more than four years since Billy Dib fought outside of his native Australia, with that bout resulting in the lone loss of his career. That he dropped a decision to Steven Luevano wasn’t nearly as unforgivable as the non-effort put forth by the visiting fighter.

The stench of the fight still lingers in the minds of many whenever his name is mentioned, which these days have been quite often. Dib returns stateside – this time with a featherweight belt in tow – as he defends against Luis Franco on March 1 at Foxwoods Casino in Mashantucket, Connecticut.

The bout marks his first since signing with 50 Cent’s SMS Promotions, and headlines a live telecast on ESPN2 Friday Night Fights.

“I’m not just coming to win; I’m coming to make a statement,” vows Dib (35-1, 21KO), who is unbeaten in his last 15 fights. “I want to show everyone that I’m the best featherweight in the world. I’m confident that I’m going to go in there and knock Luis Franco out.  Now this is basically my chance to showcase my style to the American fans. I have a new team and I’m focused on this opportunity. I’m knocking more opponents out and I’m confident in myself.”

Knockouts were sorely lacking during his past stretch in the states, or anywhere beyond home. Dib has previously fought seven times outside of Australia, with all seven fights going to the scorecards and a grand total of none suggesting he would amount to anything special.

Dib has since scored 10 knockouts in 15 fights following the Oct. ’08 loss to Luevano. The means in which he won a featherweight belt wasn’t along those lines, but did reflect a return to early career swagger as he scored a clear points win over Jorge Lacierva in their July ’11 vacant title fight. 

The showdown with Franco (12-1, 7KO) marks the fourth defense of his title, and his first with 50 Cent. Dib was set to fight in December against Jayson Velez, but became one of several casualties in the well-publicized feud between 50 Cent and Floyd Mayweather that resulted in the disbanding of TMT Promotions without launching a single show.

The fighters originally signed by the already defunct company chose sides, with several – including Dib – sticking with the hip-hop superstar. 

“Basically, 50 Cent was in touch with my management, my brother Emad,” says Dib, providing a backdrop of how he came to join the SMS family. “He was a gentleman. The deal was done over dinner. He made a couple of promises and lived up to them. March 1 at the MGM Grand, we get to fight on ESPN(2) and make a statement.” 

Dib knows that looking good is just as important as winning, with the ramifications to extend far beyond March 1. While the Aussie travels nearly 10,000 miles for this bout, another road trip could be in his future if his high-profile promoter gets his way.

“We’re in communication with (longtime unbeaten featherweight titlist) Chris John and trying to make a fight,” 50 Cent - whose real name is Curtis Jackson - revealed. “We just have to go through the politics of it.” 

First comes the present task at hand, on which Dib remains focused.

“Luis Franco is not someone I’m taking lightly. I know he’s only had 12 fights, but he’s had an extensive amateur career. He’s a seasoned fighter. It’s important for me to make a statement. This is the fight where I can announce to the world that Billy Dib has arrived.”

Jake Donovan is the Managing Editor, Records Keeper for Transnational Boxing Ratings Board and a voting member of the Boxing Writers Association of America. Twitter: @JakeNDaBox
User Comments and Feedback (Register For Free To Comment) Comment by CubanGuyNYC on 01-30-2013

[QUOTE=Angry Cuban;12972872]Yeap..I read that he could fight Chagaev for the interim WBA..but then chagaev said it was just rumors..[/QUOTE] That would be interesting if it happens. I've only seen a couple of clips of Luis. I can't even form an…

Comment by Angry Cuban on 01-30-2013

[QUOTE=CubanGuyNYC;12972862]If Solis gets that rumored shot at Wlad, he hasn't got a chance in hell. Odlanier is not only lazy, but he's been inactive for way too long. Franco just might beat Dib. Billy's nothing special. And are you talking…

Comment by CubanGuyNYC on 01-30-2013

[QUOTE=Angry Cuban;12972834]If Franco wins he is gonna be in a nice spot being the tittle holder...Russell jr didn't want to fight him for the interim belt...I watch 3 of his fights and I believe he is solid but alredy 30…

Comment by Hougigo on 01-30-2013

Enter the Dragon's lair

Comment by Angry Cuban on 01-30-2013

[QUOTE=CubanGuyNYC;12972810]I watched Franco fight for the first time a few days ago. He's not particularly impressive, but he's definitely a challenge for Billy. I wouldn't be surprised at all if he grab's Dib's belt. Luis has an old-school-Cuban-boxer way about…

Post a Comment - View More User Comments (8)
Top Headlines Kemahl Russell Drills Michi Munoz in The Second Round The Real Reason Why Floyd Mayweather Is Training MMA Antonio Orozco Wins Return, Estrada and Durate Shine in LA Chavez Sr. Gives Canelo The Edge, Picks Him To Beat Golovkin Undefeated Prospect Gets 11 Years For Being Illegal Drugs Kingpin Miguel Berchelt vs. Miguel Roman May Head To a Purse Bid Top Contender is Accused of Hiring Hitman in Murder of Lawyer Photos: Michael Dutchover, Scott Alexander Ready For Bouts Isaac Chilemba Wins Decision Over Blake Caparello Bellew Frustrated, Explains His Beef With Canelo's Positive Tests Arum on 'Improved' Verdejo: I Have To See it With My Own Eyes Photos: Gvozdyk vs. Amar, Michael Conlan - Ready For Action Photos: Verdejo, Diaz, Pedraza - Puerto Rico Triple Weigh-In Photos: Jose Ramirez, Amir Imam - Ready For Battle in New York Jorgen Hansen Passes Away at 74 Years Old Imam-Ramirez ESPN Tripleheader Weights From MSG Theater Chisora: Little Trainer Won't Help, Bellew Will Knock Haye Out! Yamaguchi Falcao Aims To Impress Against Richard Gutierrez Jose Ramirez: Nothing Amir Imam Does Worries Me Too Much Joe Joyce vs. Donnie Palmer To Be Streamed Live By Ringstar BBBoC news: Andrew Selby must travel to France for Legrand Joshua Doesn't Want Wilder In Ring Post-Parker to Hype Fight News: Oliver Flodin, Stephon Young, Bare Fist Boxing Nietes: Sor Rungvisai, Estrada, Chocolatito - I Want Them Next! Gvozdyk Unsure WBC Will Make Stevenson-Jack Winner Face Him Crawford Erupts, Tells Jeff Horn: You Know I'm F***ing You Up! Parker Warns Joshua: I Look Forward To Handing Out a Whipping!'s Television Picks of The Week - March 16 Felix Valera, Popeye Lebron return to action in the DR on 3/17 Agit Kabayel vs. Miljan Rovcanin Set Down For May 21 Haye Expects Joshua To Take Easier Fight Next - Not Wilder Wilder Reacts To Ortiz's Claim That He Was Saved From KO Loss Photos: Walter Kautondokwa, Billi Godoy - Go Face To Face Photo: Sammy Valentin, Roberto Arriaza Ready For Battle Selby, Warrington Engage in Verbal War During 'Face To Face' Imam: I'll Show Against Ramirez My Loss to Granados Was a Fluke Horn's Promoter on Crawford: Not That Tough, Will Get a Slapping Tomasz Adamek vs. Joey Abell Tops Tripleheader on April 14 Photos: Jose Ramirez Explores The Sights of New York City Canelo-GGG, Joshua-Parker To Have Special WBA Belts at Stake

Latest Active Forum Threads