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Sunday, November 29, 2015

Eleider Alvarez Takes Close Fight over Chilemba

Light heavyweight Isaac Chilemba lost a majority decision to Eleider Alvarez at Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Canada on Saturday night. It was widely regarded as a very close fight that could have gone either way.

Alvarez, a Colombian native who lives in Canada, started strong. Both men jabbed well early, but Alvarez managed to land the sharper power punches in the first two rounds. Alvarez's punches had more conviction than did Chilemba's during the early rounds.

Chilemba grabbed momentum in the fourth round. He took control of center ring and began walking down Alvarez. Alvarez continued to counter punch effectively, though. In the sixth, Alvarez countered Chilemba's jab with precision.

Halfway through the fight, Alvarez was rightfully ahead on the scorecards. But in the seventh, Chilemba landed a looping right that momentarily wobbled Alvarez early in the round. Alvarez went into a shell for much of the rest of the period.

Alvarez recovered well in the eighth, but continued to fade in the ninth. He looked exhausted and wasn't able to use the nimble footwork that had helped him elude Chilemba's shots during the early rounds and enabled Alvarez to counter.

In the tenth, Chilemba landed an assortment of punches: a check left hook early as Alvarez clumsily came in, an uppercut, and a lead right. Chilemba used the latter with more regularity as the fight wore on. It was a shrewd change of pace from the jab.

Alvarez summoned some unexpected grit to start the eleventh round, but Isaac dominated the second half of the round. Overall, Alvarez was the harder puncher and won the first portion of the fight. Chilemba upped his workrate as Alvarez faded in the second portion of the bout.

The fight was extremely close. According to ShoStats, Chilemba landed 151 punches while Alvarez landed 147. Both men landed noticeably more punches than the other in only two rounds. Alvarez controlled the first and second rounds, while Chilemba carried the punch count in the ninth and eleventh rounds.

The judges scored the bout 118-110, 115-113, and 114-114. All three judges gave Alvarez the twelfth round. Had Chilemba won it, the fight would have been a split draw.

This fight could reasonably have been scored seven rounds to five in either direction because there were so many tight rounds. Alvarez had a couple of advantages with the judges: the fight took place in his adopted country of Canada and he is managed by the omnipotent Al Haymon. Peter Hary is the judge who gave the fight to Alvarez 10 rounds to two. This was an inexcusable card and not the first score he's had that was very different from his fellow judges'.

After the decision was announced, Chilemba was sobbing in the corner out of disappointment. Jodi Solomon, Isaac's manager, covered him with her jacket as she consoled him. Isaac's record is now 22-3-2 with 10 KOs and Alvarez moves to 19-0 with 10 KOs.

Alvarez has become the mandatory challenger for one of the belts owned by light heavyweight champion Adonis Stevenson. But this fight was so close, it cries out for a rematch to determine the true mandatory challenger.

Thursday, November 26, 2015

Horowitz KOs Another Opponent

Light heavyweight Samuel Horowitz stopped Ronez McGrady in the second round last night at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Indiana. Horowitz won despite spending time in the hospital last week.

Horowitz knocked McGrady down in the second and jumped on the 37 year old to earn the TKO victory a minute 54 seconds into the round.

Horowitz is now 5-1 with 4 KOs. McGrady falls to 0-3.

Tuesday, November 24, 2015

Rabbi Foreman to Come Out of Retirement

Junior middleweight Rabbi Yuri Foreman is scheduled to step into the ring for the first time in two years on December 5. Foreman's recent absence from boxing was largely due to issues with his management. In May of 2014, Foreman announced his retirement.

"Unknowingly I signed a very harmful contract regarding my boxing [career]. I tried all possible ways to free myself from it, but nothing else I can do, [except] announce my retirement from boxing," Foreman wrote on Facebook a year and a half ago.

On his return, Foreman explained, "I realized that I needed a little rest, I love boxing. It is something that I’ve loved since I was a kid and I feel like I wanted to do it more."

Foreman doesn't have an opponent yet for the fight. The scheduled eight rounder will be held in Foreman's hometown of Brooklyn, New York in the Barclays Center. His fight is slated to be on the undercard of the Showtime-televised Danny Jacobs-Peter Quillin middleweight clash.

Monday, November 23, 2015

Isaac Chilemba to Face Undefeated Alvarez

Light heavyweight contender Isaac Chilemba faces undefeated contender Eleider Alvarez on Saturday at Centre Videotron in Quebec City, Canada. Thgis fight will be shown on Showtime in the United States and is on the undercard of the James DeGale-Lucian Bute supermiddleweight fight.

Chilemba (24-2-2, 10 KOs) is on a four fight win streak, including an impressive victory over previously undefeated Vasily Lepikhin. In that fight, Chilemba, who is rated 8th in the light heavyweight division according to the Transnational Boxing Rankings, was a defensive wizard as usual. He also jabbed well from the outside early. He then used pot shots from the outside before adding combination power punches.

In his two 2013 fights against Tony Bellew, a disputed draw and an equally disputed loss, Chilemba was a defensive master, but didn't throw enough. He has rectified that fault in recent fights. He not only became more active against Lepikin, but also against the dangerous Denis Grachev in 2014. He won virtually every round during his recent win streaks.

While Alvarez is the bigger name, Chilemba is taller, younger, and has fought the tougher competition. The undefeated Canadian of Colombian birth, Alvarez has defeated three undefeated fighters. In his last bout, Alvarez, who is the 7th ranked light heavyweight in the Transnational Boxing Rankings, tightened up his punches and improved his skill. But the awkward Isidro Prieto was able to land overhand rights and even hurt Alvarez in the middle rounds before losing a decision.

Aside from the Prieto bout, Alvarez has been known to be in boring fights, which could be a problem against Chilemba. A high work rate is the best way to neutralize Chilemba's calculated boxing. If Chilemba is allowed to jab from the outside, he'll pick apart the 6' 31 year old.

Alvarez represents the seventh time Chilemba has fought an opponent with an undefeated record and at least 10 wins; Isaac hasn't lost yet.

The bout is scheduled for 12 rounds. The winner will be the mandatory challenger to Adonis Stevenson, the recognized light heavyweight champion.

Wednesday, November 18, 2015

Horowitz Back in the Ring this Month

Light heavyweight Sam Horowitz is scheduled to be back in the ring on Wednesday, November 25 at the Horseshoe Casino in Hammond, Indiana. His opponent is slated to be Ronez McGrady.

Horowitz (4-1, 3 KOs) has won his last two fights, including a decision victory in August over Israel Echevarria, who had a winning record at the time. Horowitz had shown power in his previous three wins, but the victory over Echevarria exhibited his boxing skills.

McGrady is a 37 year old who hasn't won a professional fight in his two chances. He was stopped in his last fight which took place on the same card that Horowitz defeated Echevarria. McGrady, who is from Indianapolis, also has experience fighting in mixed martial arts.

This will be the sixth time Horowitz has fought at the Horseshoe Casino. The bout is scheduled for four rounds.

Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Fleischer Notches Two More Victories

Welterweight Dustin Fleischer scored two Knockout victories int he past two months. On September 26, Fleischer stopped Ira Frank in the first round at Veteran's Memorial Park in Beach Haven, New Jersey. Less than a month later, Fleischer won by second round TKO over Oscar Diaz at the Marina Bay SportsComplex in Quincy, Massachusetts. That fight took place on October 17.

Fleischer is now 5-0 with 5 KOs. While he has shown fast hands, good power, and impressive talent, Frank was his first opponent with a winning record; the 35 year old Frank was 1-0 at the time. Diaz was 0-8.

Fleischer is scheduled to fight in a four round bout on December 11 at the Parsippany PAL in Parsippany, New Jersey.