Ishe Smith Parts Ways; Prizefighter preview kicks off, Rees-Murray tonight

Las Vegas, NV- Middleweight contender Ishe Smith is a free agent once again this week following a split from promoter of two years Lou Dibella, and Dibella entertainment. Smith and Dibella mutually parted ways following a seven month inactive streak for Smith.

“I’d like to thank Lou for granting me the opportunity to seek out a new promotional contract. I’m excited to explore the field in free agency, and as always just want to get back into the ring.” Smith noted in regards to the situation.

Smith has stated that he is open to fighting at either 154 or 160 lbs. should the right opportunity arise, and feels he is able to compete with the world’s elite at either weight class. The Las Vegas native has also expressed hope that his free agency stint might allow him the opportunity to realize his dream of fighting in the United Kingdom.

“I’d love to fight overseas, it’s always been something I’ve been interested in and they have a number of guys over there that would make for interesting fights. Martin Murray and Darren Barker are two fights that may make sense in the near future.” Smith stated.

Smith had a strong 2010, giving the undefeated Fernando Guerreo all he could handle in a disputed decision loss, and stopping Alexander Quiroz in November. Smith appeared on national television twice in his stint with Dibella, once in the Guerrero fight which was showcased on ShoBox and featured as one of the network’s top fights of the year, the other being an HBO meeting with Daniel Jacobs in the summer of 2009.


Meet the Welterweights on Sky Sports 1 at 7pm tonight

Tonight is set to be a great night for boxing fans as Cardiff plays host to Gavin Rees and Andy Murray fighting for the European Lightweight title, while in Atlantic City, Carl Froch fights Glen Johnson for a place in the Super Six final.

All the action is live on Sky Sports 1 and HD1 from 10.30pm, but the fight night really begins at 7pm on the same channel, with a special Prizefighter Welterweights II preview show.

The 19th edition of Matchroom Sport’s eight-man, one night tournaments takes place at York Hall, Bethnal Green on Tuesday night from 8pm – with one of the best line-ups in Prizefighter history battling for the trophy and £32,000 winner’s cheque.

Former WBC World Light-Welterweight champion Junior Witter could face old foe Colin Lynes in the final with the pair separated in the draw. Ex-British and European belt holder Lynes took on Witter in 2005 at the same venue for Witter’s Commonwealth, European and British titles, losing to the Sheffield man on points.

The duo will have to do something special to set up such a clash though, with both Witter and Lynes facing tough quarter-final assignments. Witter must get past Aylesbury’s Nathan Graham in the second quarter-final of the night, and the victor will then face the winner of the opening bout of the night, when former British Welterweight champion Kevin McIntyre faces unbeaten Essex man John Wayne Hibbert.

Former European champ Lynes faces gym mate Bobby Gladman in the third quarter-final on Tuesday night, with the victor having to overcome on of the entertaining doe of Yassine El Maachi or Peter McDonagh to reach the second semi-final and all the fighters are featured on tonight’s 30 minute preview show.

The clash between Rees and Murray has been tipped as a fight of the year contender by Barry McGuigan, and the Irish legend will be ringside tonight when his hot prospect Carl Frampton takes on Cefn Forest’s Robbie Turley in the chief support clash. Attention will then turn stateside, as Froch puts his WBC Super-Middleweight belt on the line against Johnson, with a Super Six final meeting with Andre Ward later in the year also up for grabs.

A limited number of unreserved tickets are available for Prizefighter Welterweights II on Tuesday 7 June priced £35 – to buy call Matchroom Sport on 01277 359900.

Rees and Murray primed for European title clash

Gavin Rees and Andy Murray comfortably made the weight ahead of their European Lightweight title clash at the Motorpoint Arena in Cardiff tomorrow night (June 7) live on Sky Sports.

Rees, Murray and the majority of the undercard for the show weighed in at Cardiff City Hall ahead of a great Saturday Fight Night on Sky Sports for British boxing fans, starting at 10.30pm in the Welsh capital before moving over to Atlantic City in America where Carl ‘The Cobra’ Froch puts his World Boxing Council (WBC) Super-Middleweight belt on the line in the Super Six semi-final, with the winner facing Andre Ward in the final later this year.

Former WBU Light-Welterweight champ Rees is gunning to become a two-weight World Champion and believes the journey starts against Murray, but Rees’ trainer, Gary Lockett, said that his man has prepared well to take on the unbeaten Irishman for the vacant strap.

“He's good, he's well-schooled, and his upright stance which might be a factor in how the fight goes,” said Lockett. “But we've got a lot of respect for Andy Murray – Gavin was an unbeaten prospect when he beat Souleymane M'baye for the WBA title when nobody expected anything of Gavin. The majority of people don't expect Andy to beat Gavin but an unbeaten prospect like Andy is a dangerous proposition and we've prepared for him with that in mind.

“Gavin is in very good shape – my job has just been to slow him down a little bit. He's a good puncher and he's not just a reckless bull of a fighter who just charges in, he's got good skills and good boxing ability and I've just had to fine tune things with Gavin, that's all.”

The chief support on the night sees hot Belfast prospect Carl Frampton defend his Celtic Super-Bantamweight belt against Cefn Forest’s Robbie Turley – with unbeaten Frampton one of Sky Sports 11 to watch in 2011, and being guided by Irish legend Barry McGuigan.

“I firmly believe that the future of Irish boxing lies in the gloves of Carl Frampton – he is the most exciting kid I have seen in a long, long time,” said McGuigan. “He's got the whole lot and when people get to know him they are going to love him because he's got a great personality too.”

Tickets are available on the door at the Motorpoint Arena Cardiff on Saturday night from 6.30pm – priced £30 unreserved and £50 ringside.

Official weigh-in results

Gavin Rees (9st 8½lbs) v Andy Murray (9st 8lbs)

Robbie Turley (8st 9½lbs) v Carl Frampton (8st 10lbs)

Eamonn O’Kane (11st 8½lbs) v Dimitrijus Kalinovskis (11st)

Steve Williams (10st 2lbs) v Araik Sachbazyan (10st 1¾lbs)

Jason Cook (10st 10½lbs) v Mounir Guebbas (10st 6½lbs)

The following fights will weigh-in on Saturday:

Tony Dodson v Jamie Ambler, Frankie Borg v Costas Osben and Jeff Evans v Dean Walker.

Article posted on 04.06.2011

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