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News: Pedraza vs Benitez; Antoine Douglas; Ring 8

On Friday, October 12, DiBella Entertainment will return to the Ameristar Casino in St. Charles MO, with an exciting edition of ShoBox: The New Generation. Headlining the card will be Puerto Rican amateur star, and blue-chip prospect, Jose “Sniper” Pedraza (10-0, 6KO’s) taking on Robert Garcia trained Allan Benitez (7-1, 1KO) in an eight-round lightweight matchup.

In the televised co-feature, undefeated up-and-coming prospects Jonathan Cepeda (12-0, 11KO’s) and Lamar Russ (10-0, 6KO’s) square off in an eight-round middleweight bout. The card is promoted by DiBella Entertainment in association with Gary Shaw Productions, Universal Promotions and Rumble Time Promotions. SHOWTIME® will begin live coverage at 11 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).

Also featured on the ShoBox telecast will be highlights of former undisputed middleweight champion Jermain “Bad Intentions” Taylor (30-4-1, 18KO’s) in his bout versus Raul Munoz (21-15-1, 16KO’s), a ten-round middleweight matchup which will take place earlier in the evening.

At just 23 years old, Pedraza is one of the highest regarded prospects in all of boxing. Pedraza’s stellar amateur career saw him represent his native Puerto Rico in the 2008 Olympics and win a silver medal at the 2009 Amateur World Championships, before turning pro in February 2011 with a first-round TKO over Felix Rivera. His bout against Benitez will be his second on SHOWTIME, but the first as the featured bout of the evening.

“After my last fight against Valderrama (August 31), I only rested for a week and then got straight back in the gym,” said Pedraza. “For this fight the training has been very intense. I have sparred with former world title contender Mario Santiago, world champion ‘Rocky’ Martinez and Luis Rosario, who is a very good amateur boxer. I am looking forward to putting on a great performance on the 12th and taking another step towards fulfilling my ultimate goal of winning a world championship.”

A native of Mexico, now living and training with Garcia in the boxing hotbed of Oxnard, Calif., Benitez has rattled off seven wins in a row after dropping his pro-debut in a close four-round decision. Benitez last saw action in August of this year, winning an exciting six-round unanimous decision over Osnel Charles at the Roseland Ballroom in New York City.

Cepeda had a limited but successful amateur career, sporting a 22-3 record with all three losses coming against former blue-chip prospect Danny Jacobs. Cepeda competed in the National Golden Gloves and twice won the Florida Golden Gloves tournament. Since turning pro, Cepeda has impressed in each and every outing. With devastating power in both hands and an aggressive seek-and-destroy mentality, Cepeda has the ability to end a fight with one punch.

Russ was an accomplished amateur, winning the North Carolina State title six times, before turning pro in 2009. At just 25 years old, Russ is just coming into his own as a professional. Like Cepeda, Russ is a come-forward fighter who likes to press the action and mix it up with his opponent. Russ is coming off his most impressive victory to date; a fourth-round TKO over previously unbeaten (13-0) Jose Alonzo. Prior to his bout with Alonzo, Russ won a six-round unanimous decision over Marcus Upshaw.

Taylor returned to the ring in December of last year. In his most recent outing, he won a 10-round unanimous decision over previously undefeated Caleb Truax. Taylor, who is currently rated number six in the WBC, eight in the WBO and 14 in the IBF, is working his way back into title contention and hopes to get another shot at the coveted middleweight championship sometime in 2013.

The event is promoted by DiBella Entertainment, in association with Gary Shaw Productions, Universal Promotions and Rumble Time Promotions. Tickets are priced at $100, $75 and $40 and can be purchased through the Ameristar Casino or by calling (314) 267-2204. Doors open at 5:30PM with the first bout scheduled for 6PM.


WASHINGTON, DC (October 2, 2012)—Twenty Year-old amateur star Antoine Douglas will make his anticipated professional debut on October 27th in Berk, Virginia.

Douglas of Washington, D.C. compiled a record of 85-30 and was a National PAL Champion, 2009 Jt. Olympic Champion as well as a Ringside World champion as well as placing third in the Olympic trials, recently signed with managers Bill Mielnicki and Kay Korona and with promoter Greg Cohen.

“After the Olympic trials I didn’t feel the need to stay amateur”, said Douglas

Douglas, who has what, has been called an “Electrifying” Style recently moved his training operations to the Elite Heat Boxing Gym in Newark, New Jersey is excited about the future.

“It was a good move to come up to New Jersey as I have no distractions and I can focus on everything”, continued Douglas.

“I have all my needs taken care and I have big goals for myself as I hope I can win world titles in multiple weight classes over the next 5-8 years”

Douglas is also very excited about his new team.

“Greg Cohen was interested from the start and with him and the rest of my team, the sky is the limit”

After fighting in Berk, Virginia, Douglas is scheduled for a quick ring return when he fights on November 10th in Millville, New Jersey.

Ring 8 Commemorating Old Sunnyside Garden Arena Saturday in New York

NEW YORK (October 2, 2012) – Ring 8 will host a commemorative ceremony for the old Sunnyside Garden Arena this Saturday afternoon ( October 6), starting at 12 noon (ET), highlighted by the unveiling of a monument on the site of the former sports venue at 44-10 Queens Boulevard in Sunnyside, New York.

The Sunnyside Garden Arena monument reads: This monument is in honor and dedicated to those men who fought in the amateurs and professional bouts.

Originally built in 1926 by railroad baron, Jay Gould, as a private tennis club, the property was sold in 1945 and became a public arena, hosting amateur and professional boxing, wrestling, roller derby and kick-boxing during the next 32 years. Several films were shot there, including Mr. Universe in 1951, starring Vincent Edwards, and President John F. Kennedy campaigned in front of Sunnyside Garden Arena in 1960.

Boxing, however, was its main attraction, seating 2000 with tickets back costing only $4.00 for general admission and $8.00 for ringside. Before television, Sunnyside Garden Arena served as sort of a minor league system for boxing, noted by the Ring 8 member and Daily News cartoonist, the late Bill Gallo, whose father reported fights for the New York Sun. Fighters who consistently won fights at Sunnyside Garden Arena often graduated to the Mecca in Manhattan, Madison Square Garden.

Some of the more notable boxers who fought at Sunnyside Garden Arena between 1945 and 1977 included Emile Griffith, Bob Cassidy, Gerry Cooney, Jose Torres, Oscar Bonevena Sr., Eddie Gregory and Archer brothers, Jimmy and Joey. Other Ring 8 members who also fought there included Henny Wallitsch, Bobby Bartels, John Colon, Tommy Englehardt and Lenny Mangiapane.

“Ring 8 is proud to remember Sunnyside Garden Arena and honor the great boxers who fought there for more than three decades,” Ring 8 president Bob Duffy said. “Sunnyside Garden Arena still has a lot of meaningful memories for many of our Ring 8 members. In 1977, Sunnyside Garden Arena was razed to build the Wendy’s franchise that is there now, but boxing memories from that site will live forever. This monument guarantees that Sunnyside Garden Arena will never be forgotten.”

Formed in 1954 by an ex-prizefighter, Jack Grebelsky, Ring 8 became the eighth subsidiary of what was then known as the National Veteran Boxers Association – hence, RING 8 – and today the organization’s motto still remains: Boxers Helping Boxers.

RING 8 is fully committed to supporting less fortunate people in the boxing community who may require assistance in terms of paying rent, medical expenses, or whatever justifiable need.

Go on line to for more information about RING 8, the largest group of its kind in the United States with more than 350 members. Annual membership dues is only $25.00 and each member is entitled to a buffet dinner at RING 8 monthly meetings, the third Tuesday of every month, excluding July and August. All active boxers, amateur and professional, are entitled to a complimentary RING 8 yearly membership.

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