ESPN2’s Boxcino 2015: future contenders clash in Connecticut
The popular, TV-friendly, single-elimination boxing tournament, “Boxcino 2015” will debut tonight on ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights” at the Mohegan Sun in Uncasville, Connecticut.
The series, promoted by Artie Pelullo’s Banner Promotions and Jimmy Burchfield’s CES, is focusing on the junior middleweights in its opening category.
The series will debut four quarterfinal, 154-pound bouts to kick things off. The winners are looking to make it to the championship final round seeking the world rankings that await the winners.
The prizes are the vacant NABA and NABO titles. The winners will also receive a top-10 ranking by the WBA and the WBO.
The following Friday night, Feb. 20, four quarterfinal, heavyweight division bouts will again be televised live on Friday Night Fights. This time, the action will be hosted from the Turning Stone Resort and Casino in Verona, New York.
In all, throughout the tournament, the quarterfinal bouts will be six rounds, the semi-final bouts will be eight rounds and the championship bouts will be 10 rounds.
The tournament pits upcoming contenders against one another in a single elimination format. The attraction to this type of tournament is that it meets the needs of the fans and the fighters alike.
The boxers receive a great opportunity to vault themselves into a top-10 ranking while gaining broad, national exposure in a televised bout. And the fans benefit in the matches which are even and very competitive; there are no soft touches for any of the fighters.
As a result, the intensity of each fight is elevated for both the fighters and fans.
While a victory is always the end-game for any boxers entering the ring, the spoils that await the winners boost both anticipation for the evenly-matched bouts. There are no fighters being built here on the backs of an opponent. So under that format, no one fighter gets a softer landing than any other.
In short, these are evenly contested, fan-friendly fights.
The 2014 middleweight division winner, Willie Monroe Jr., certainly expanded his profile from last year’s tournament and his victories in the Boxcino series certainly helped. He is currently rated No. 3 by the WBA, No. 5 by the WBO and No. 10 by the WBC.
As well, Boxcino 2014 lightweight champion Petr Petrov is currently ranked No. 2 in the WBA.
Clearly, the following match-ups show that there are no easy predictions with these numbers as the bouts all look very strong.
Tonight: quarterfinals, junior middleweights, Mohegan Sun, Uncasville, Conn., six rounds (ESPN2/ESPN Deportes)
Cleotis Pendarvis, Los Angeles, Calif., 17-4-2 (6) vs. Ricardo Pinell, San Francisco, Calif., 10-1-1 (6)
Stanyslav Skorokhod, Slavutich, Ukraine, 8-0 (6) vs. Michael Moore, Cleveland, Ohio., 13-0 (6)
Brandon Adams, Los Angeles, Calif., 15-1 (10) vs. Alex Perez, Newark, NJ., 18-1 (10)
Vito Gasparyan, Glendale, Calif., 14-3-5 (8) vs. Simeon Hardy, Brooklyn, NY., 13-0 (10)
Let’s take a look at the Boxcino big boys in the heavyweight division, who lock horns a week later in New York.
Friday Feb. 20, quarterfinals, heavyweights, Turning Stone Resort and Casino, Verona, NY., six rounds (ESPN2/ESPN Deportes)
Donovan Dennis, Davenport, Iowa., 10-1 (8) vs. Steve Vukosa, Quincy, Mass., 10-0 (4)
Razvan Cojanu, Las Vegas, Nev., 12-1 (7), vs. Ed Fountain, St. Louis, Mo., 10-0 (4)
Andrey Fedosov, Hollywood, Calif., 25-3 (20) vs. Nat Heaven, Ocala, Fla., 9-1 (7)
Mario Heredia, Distrito Fedral, Mexico., 9-1 (7) vs. Lenroy Thomas, St. Petersburg, Fla., 18-3 (9)
The fists will be flying, fast and furious on Friday. Let the games begin!