Nguyen interview; Troy Ross wants Kayode or Godfrey next; Flores-Iannuzzi on 7/23

NEW YORK (June 9, 2011) – World-renowned trainer Buddy McGirt did a double take the moment he first laid eyes on Dat “Be Dat” Nguyen during a sparring session with Arturo Gatti before Gatti’s second fight with Micky Ward in late 2002.

“I saw this guy who could really hit and said he should be knocking everyone out,” McGirt said. “He was in there doing his thing and I liked him. Someone said they were looking for a fighter so I gave them Dat’s number. And that’s how we met.”

For the past five years, McGirt has trained Nguyen of Vietnam, who will headline on a special edition of ShoBox: The New Generation on SHOWTIME® this Saturday LIVE at 10:35 p.m. ET/PT (delayed on the West Coast).

Nguyen (17-1, 6 KOs), a U.S. resident now living in Vero Beach, Fla., will face promising Luis Orlando “Orlandito” Del Valle (12-0,10 KOs), of Bayamon, Puerto Rico, in a 10-round featherweight fight at Roseland Ballroom in New York City. The card co-promoted by DiBella Entertainment and Gary Shaw Productions will include an 10-rounder that pits 2008 Puerto Rican Olympian, power-punching Jonathan Gonzalez (13-0, 13 KOs), of Rio Piedras, against Colombian Richard Gutierrez (26-6-1, 16 KOs), of Miami, in a junior middleweight match.

A former kickboxer who was born in Bien Hoa about 45 minutes north of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam, Nguyen graduated from high school in 2001 and received a full scholarship to Northern Michigan University, home of the U.S. Olympic Center. He spent three years there studying computer information systems.

The 28-year-old Nguyen has won his last six starts, all by decision, including an eight-round decision over Andres Ledesma in his last fight on Oct. 10, 2009.

Although it’s been 20 months since he’s fought, McGirt doesn’t believe in ring rust when you’re young. “That’s a load of crap,” he said. “As long as you take care of yourself it doesn’t matter how long it’s been.”

Nguyen answered six questions.

Question: There will be a lot of Puerto Rican fans in the crowd on Saturday rooting for your opponent. Are you concerned about that and do you hear the crowd when you’re in the ring?

Nguyen: “I hope that there will be a few Vietnamese fans there. I’m sure their will. But it doesn’t matter. I’m always in for putting on a good show for whoever is there. It all depends. Usually when I fight I don’t hear anything. If I concentrate and pay attention and try to hear them, I can sometimes hear them. When I’m focused then I can’t hear them.”

Question: What has training with Buddy McGirt meant to you these past five years?

Nguyen: “Buddy has trained multiple world champions. With Buddy, he’s very calm and when he’s calm I’m relaxed. He just has so much experience. I do whatever Buddy says to do. Buddy doesn’t really take the credit for all the champions he’s produced. He’s very humble and doesn’t talk about a lot of his other fighters. I’m just happy to be part of his stable of fighters.”

Question: What do you think about the featherweight division right now and are you ready to call anyone out?

Nguyen: “(Laughing) No. Not quite yet. There’s a lot of talent in this division and I’m happy to be part of it. There’s (Yuriorkis) Gamboa and Chris John and all the other champions. (Juan Manuel) Lopez just lost but he has so much heart. Those are some of the guys I would like to fight because they are so well known and well respected.”

Question: You opened your own gym called Miracle Boxing Academy in Vero Beach. Would you like to stay in the fight game after your boxing career is over?

Nguyen: “I love this art and I’ve been doing it so long it just felt like the right thing to do. It’s made me a better fighter. I’m doing homework every day when I’m training other people. It’s been a real blessing for me. It’s something I did to give myself the best opportunity to succeed as a fighter right now.”

Question: Not many boxers get full college scholarships for boxing, but you did. How did that come about?

Nguyen: “Yes, I received a full scholarship to Northern Michigan University where the U.S. Olympic Center is. I fought in the U.S. Nationals and the coaches like Al Mitchell recognized that I had some talent. I even beat Andre Dirrell in the 1999 National Junior Olympics. I left after three years to turn professional and am still a few credits short of getting my degree. It gave me a lot of confidence and opened up my eyes to a lot of different things.”

Question: You are a self-described “computer nerd” and even operate your own website. What do you plan on doing with your computer education?

Nguyen: “I’ve always worked on computers and I fix people’s computers. I do everything on my website ( If I didn’t get the boxing scholarship and wasn’t so focused on making the Olympics then I would probably be a computer engineer right now. If I do something I go the whole nine yards so it’s something I’ve kind of put on backburner for now.”

For information on SHOWTIME Sports Programming, including exclusive behind-the-scenes video and photo galleries, complete telecast information and more, please go the new SHOWTIME Sports website at http://

Troy Ross Targets Kayode-Godfrey Winner

TORONTO (June 10, 2011) – Two-time Canadian Olympian Troy Ross has issued a challenge to the winner of tonight’s (Friday, June 10) featured fight on ShoBox between undefeated, highly-touted Lateef “Power” Kayode (16-0, 14 KOs) and former world title contender Matt “Too Smooth” Godfrey (20-2, 14 KOs).

Ross is the top-rated International Boxing Federation (IBF) contender at No. 3 (#1 and #2 are not rated), in addition to being rated No. 5 by The Ring magazine, No. 14 by the WBA, and No. 15 by the WBC.

“I think Kayode-Godfrey is a 50-50 fight and I want a shot at the winner,” Ross said. “Cunningham seems unwilling to fight me again for whatever reasons, but Kayode and Godfrey are legitimate, throwback-type fighters who both only want to fight the best. I really admire their fighting spirits and I think they’re going to have a great fight. The winner has an open invitation to fight me later this summer. All he needs to do is have his promoter contact mine.”

Ross (24-2, 16 KOs), a native of Guyana who lives in Toronto, was a member of the 1996 and 2000 Canadian Olympic Teams. The powerful southpaw was the winner of The Contender, Season Four reality television series and he portrayed light heavyweight contender John Henry Lewis in the movie, “Cinderella Man.”

In 2001, Ross made his pro debut and went on to win his first 12 pro fights, immediately rebounding from his first loss to capture the Canadian cruiserweight title in 2005, then reeled-off 11 victories in a row before controversially losing his only world title fight to Cunningham a year ago. Ross floored Cunningham in the fourth round but the fight was halted by the referee in the fifth round due to a cut on Ross’ eyelid. Troy protested insisting Cunningham thumbed him in the eye and that the fight should have ended after four rounds with a technical decision going in his favor. Many observers felt that Cunningham was on the verge of being stopped if the fight had continued. Cunningham and Ross were mandated to fight for the vacant IBF title, ironically, because Godfrey had pulled out of his fight against Cunningham.

Ross’ most notable wins to date have been against former NABF/USBA champion Felix Cora, Jr. (TKO1), Ehino Ehikamenor (TKO4), David Haye-conquerer (as an amateur) Michael Simms (DEC10), Akinyemi Laleye (DEC5), and Brazilian Olympian Daniel Bispo (KO1). Troy’s last action was a win by unanimous 10-round decision over Carl Handy (24-7-2) this past October.

BJ Flores vs.Iannuzzi on July 23

SPRINGFIELD, MO (June 10, 2011)—On Saturday night July 23rd, popular Cruiserweight B.J. Flores will return to his childhood home to take on tough Nick Iannuzzi for the Interim NABO and the NABA championship that will headline a hybrid card that will feature four Boxing and seven MMA bouts at the O’Reiley Center.

The shoe is promoted by Joe Kelly’s Titan Entertainment and Wes Slay Productions.

Flores, who now resides in Las Vegas has a record of 24-1-1 with fifteen wins coming by knockout will be making his fourth appearance in Springfield and first start since 2007 in his childhood home.

Iannuzzi of Tampa, Florida has a record of 16-2 with nine knockouts.

“I love fighting here and know this is the place where my roots were planted so its always exciting to come back here”, said Flores.

“"I am very much looking forward to getting back in the ring in front of my hometown Fans. This will be an exciting event with all the area’s best MMA fighters and 4 professional boxing matches! We are determined to bring a VERY high Quality show to Springfield Missouri."

“I have been STARVING to get back into the ring! Been training like a DOG! My last fight has simply made me more hungry and determined. I can’t wait to face another hi level opponent in this tyype of make or break fight. The winner of this fight takes a GIANT step forward and the Loser takes a GIANT step backwards!! "

In that last fight, Flores traveled across the globe only to put up a valiant effort in suffering his first professional loss to local icon Danny Green in Australia.

"The truth of the matter is, I have been waiting to get back into the ring because we were supposed to fight again in Australia and I had received countless emails and calls from them telling me of their desire to have me DOWN UNDER after the close fight with Danny Green. The people saw what they saw and for that reason Angelo Hyder and Danny wanted me back. It wasn’t until about 1 and half months ago that we found out they were moving in another direction. So I am now moving forward"

" I have a lot to learn and will be much better with keeping an active schedule and that is exactly what I plan to do. We have a great following in Missouri and I plan on fighting here every 3 months to keep me sharp and keep moving towards another title shot. Before my last fight I was off almost 16 months and you can never be at your best under those conditions. I will NOT let that happen again"!

“Nick Iannuzzi provides a great challenge. We had offered this fight to 8 different guys rated in the top ten in the US and ALL of them had turned it down except IANUZZI. This guy is coming off a very controversially loss to WBO #3 WBA #3 WBC #4 Lateef Kayode. Everyone saw the fight that night and EVERYONE except the three judges thought Iannuzzi had done enough to win the fight. He is tough and gritty and I thought he performed very well on SHOWTIME. Immediately after the fight I did a press release calling out L Kayode. However his camp responded by simply saying I am a racist and blah blah blah. Listen, I all want to do is fight! I don’t care where Lateef is from!! However, I will now look to the next best thing. Fighting the guy who all the SHOWTIME announcers had winning the fight. Nick Iannuzzi. I am looking forward to fighting for the NABO interim and NABA titles and gaining a rating with the World Boxing Organization (WBO) and WBA by facing a tough opponent. This fight will put me right back into position to fight another BIG fight! I am very UP for the challenge and looking forward to getting one step closer to another title shot"!

Flores is currently ranked #13 by the WBO and is a former NABA Super Cruiserweight; WBF Super Cruiserweight; USBA and NABO Cruiserweight champion

Tickets go on sale at the beginning of JULY!!!

Article posted on 11.06.2011

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