The Danny Roman World Tour continues in Chicago
Danny Roman, the current WBA 122-pound titlist, has put the “world” in “world champion.” And that continues tonight as he makes the third defense of that belt versus Gavin McDonnell.
“I’ve been all over; I’ve been to Japan, Texas, now Chicago,” said Roman, who won the title versus Shun Kubo last September, then defended it back in Japan against Ryo Matsumoto and, in his most recent fight, decisioned Moises Flores in June, near Dallas.
“Everybody gets to enjoy it except me. I’m focused on the fight. After everything goes good, I’ll probably sight-see a little bit,” said the traveling man from Los Angeles, who makes it clear that, for the most part, these are business trips. “We’re just focused on the fight. Once the fight’s over, we can do anything we want.”
When asked about his memories of Japan, Roman, who had never traveled abroad before, told UCNLive.com, “First trip, it was kinda hard to communicate. Everybody speaks Japanese there; hardly anyone speaks English but overall it was a great experience, good people, different culture – way, way different culture.”
For him, the “Land of the Rising Sun” will always be special, given he won his title there and defended it for the first time. As for fighting back in the States, as he did a few months ago, he says the only real difference is “just the time zone. It was a 16-hour difference and now it’s like two hours ahead from Pacific Time. So a fight’s a fight; we get ready for that. We’re ready.”
Whether you fight in Japan, Texas or Timbutktu, boxing is basically the same. “Once you’re inside the ring, it’s just you and the guy and just the referee,” Roman pointed out.
With his newfound status as a world champion, Thompson Boxing Promotions was able to secure a partnership with Matchroom Boxing USA that will see him fight for significant six-figure purses on DAZN. The unassuming Roman says,”It’s big. It’s a lot more exposure for me, so it’s good.”
Alex Camponovo, the general manager and matchmaker for Thompson Boxing, was the architect of Roman’s development. Just a few years ago, he was toiling at their monthly shows at the Doubletree Hotel in Ontario. “It’s always great to see that what we hoped for. It actually happened. It turns out the plans we originally had but the rise to Danny definitely speaks to the dedication he has for the sport,” he said. At one point, Thompson Boxing actually dropped Roman early in his career. “He’s a fighter that, at the beginning of his career, nobody thought he was going to rise to this occasion and have the ability to become a world champion.
“But we were confident of his progress and it is amazing where he’s at but he’s earned it. Early on in his career, he had no easy fights, no walk-throughs and every time out, he showed something different and he’s still improving, which gives us a lot of confidence for the future and the fights that are ahead of him.”
The hope is to secure Roman the unification bout he desires at 122 pounds but there is also another goal – to get him a well-deserved homecoming fight in Southern California.
“The original idea was for Danny to come back here in October but things got shifted when Demetrius Andrade got the fight in Boston (on October 20) and he was able to do the fight with (WBO middleweight titleholder Billy Joe) Saunders and that moved it out of California, the entire show,” explained Camponovo. “So we had our choice of doing it on October 6th or doing the fight on October the 20th and we thought it was better for us to be on the initial DAZN show in the United States than being on the second one. Plus it fit perfect with Danny’s training regimen.”
As the calendar turns to 2019, Camponovo makes it clear, “We want to come back to California. He’s been going around all over the place, two times to Japan, Dallas, now Chicago and I think the champion deserves to have a homecoming.”
But first Roman must get past the tall and lanky McDonnell, who could be difficult stylistically.
“These past fights, I’ve been fighting guys who have been 5′ 10, 5′ 11, so we just gotta do a few little adjustments but we’ve been getting ready for this,” said Roman, who has a record of 25-2-1 (9). “He’s got the reach; he’s got the height, so I’ve got to bring the fight to him.”
In an announcement that seemingly came out from nowhere, middleweight champion Saul Alvarez announced his next bout via social media:
So there it is, “Canelo” will face WBA super middleweight titleholder Rocky Fielding on December 15. Now the big question is, just which network/platform will broadcast and distribute this event?
Here’s this week’s episode of “The 3 Knockdown Rule,” with Mario Lopez and Yours Truly. You’ll hear from Golden Boy Promotions President Eric Gomez, Danny Roman and WBO featherweight beltholder Oscar Valdez:
Speaking of streamed boxing events, ESPN+ has two, with coverage of the Jack Catterall-Ohara Davies bout from England in the afternoon and, then later, the return of Luis Nery from Mexico…Yeah, Jarrell “Big Baby” Miller weighed in at 317 pounds for his about against Tomasz Adamek tonight…It’s very simple: If Miami can’t beat this FSU team at home, then there needs to be “For Sale” signs put up on Mark Richt’s front lawn…I can be reached at email@example.com and I tweet (a lot) at twitter.com/steveucnlive. I also share photos of stuff at instagram.com/steveucnlive and can also be found at tsu.co/steveucnlive.