Arizona Boxing News & Notes With Don Smith
Arreola News, Ramos Impressive, Zemrose in AZ.&More
No set date for the WBC heavyweight title clash between Cris "The Nightmare"Arreola and Bermane "B WARE" Stiverne. A spokesperson for Arreola confirmed the "Nightmare" has been training for more tan a month near his California home. Young Arizona boxer Eddie Martinez sparred with the big fellow recently and was excited about the session and hopes to work with Arreola again; in the near future
Arreola pal Ralph Velez is shooting a documentary on the life and times of the #2 ranked heavyweight and the working title is Cris Arreola, "My Own Worst Enemy". According to Mr. Velez, clips from My Own Worst Enemy was released online Monday, January 20. Velez is happy with the product and promised to send a link to his work. Arreola has been there and done that;so I can't wait to view the result.According to his resume, Velez is an actor/filmmaker who worked as a ring announcer for Iron Boy Promotions, Fan Base Promotions & Raging Babe
Events with Marketing Director Michelle Rosado. His knowledge of boxing is quite impressive and he was instrumental in signing Phoenix boxer Mario Esparza (1-0-1) to a contract with Fan Base.
According to Arreola Manager Henry Ramirez, Cris is back working out and recently sparred with young Arizona boxer Eddie Martinez Jr, near his home in Riverside, California. Eddie is waiting for his professional debut; so he was pumped at the chance to get a little ring action with Cris Arreola. Martinez was scheduled to make his boxing debut on an Iron Boy Card last year but the light heavyweight injured his back and is still waiting to start his career. The session with Arreola obviously proves his back has mended.
Arreola Promoter Dan Goossen confirmed that Arreola will set up camp in Phoenix for his proposed meeting with Stiverne. Goossen assured me the fight will happen; but didn't know details. At the time of our chat,the renowned boxing promoter was on his way to UCLA Medical Center to pay his respects to Don Jose Sulaiman, WBC President. The 82 year old Sulaiman passed the next day. My condolences to his family.
Colorful and controversial, Sulaiman thought Boxing needed only one promoter and equally flamboyant Don King was his personal pick. Sulaiman caught plenty of grief from the boxing community over his life long ties with King. They remained friends until his passing. No word on who will succeed Sulaiman as WBC President.
Ramos Impressive: Junior welterweights Abel Ramos (8-0-1) and Maurice Hooker(12-0-2) battled on 1/17/14 in Memphis, Tennessee and settled for a Majority Draw. Hooker started strong, but Ramos body shots began to take their toll in the later rounds of their 8 round contest. Hooker manager Arnie Verbeeck told me his man didn't follow the fight plan and he praised Ramos, but he agreed with Showtime and the one ring judge who scored the 8 round bout in favor of Hooker, 77-75.
Ramos Manager Andrew Zack(Journeyman Management)is a new and welcome addition to the Ramos team and it was Zack who scored the Memphis gig which took the 22 year old Ramos out of Arizona for the first time in his professional career. His strong showing against he highly touted Hooker caught the attention of Dan Goossen and other prominent promoters who might leave their calling card at the doorstep of Andrew Zack and his
jubilant team. Sometimes, leaving the home nest can be the best tonic for a career that seemed stuck in neutral.
Abel is a very good fighter who has a chance to fight for bigger paydays if he continues to fight and defeat prospects like Hooker. There was some discussion,after the fight, about a rematch but according to Abel's brother, Hooker's people wanted to push the idea down the road. Ironically, Ramos took the bout on 10 days notice and agreed to fight at 142,several lbs. under his normal fighting weight and fortunately, the maverick move paid off. Congratulations to Abel and his team. His next fight might happen in California before May.