Zab Judah - Vernon Paris on NBC Sports Network on March 24th

NEW YORK - March 14, 2012 - Zab "Super" Judah, former undisputed welterweight and junior welterweight champion, will be featured in Fight Night 36: Zab Judah, premiering Wednesday, March 21 at 10:30 p.m. ET on the NBC Sports Network.

The NBC Sports Network extends its all-access 36 series to boxing for the first time with this 30-minute special that chronicles 36 hours in the life of the Brooklyn boxer as he prepares to face Vernon Paris in a box-off for the No. 1 contender position in the Junior Welterweight division. Judah's match with Paris will air on the second edition of the NBC Sports Network Fight Night boxing series, Saturday, March 24 at 10 p.m. ET.

"Compelling, story-driven access is something we want to grow in the NBC Sports Network original space, said Ron Wechsler, Vice President, Original Programming and Development, NBC Sports Network. "Given the success we have seen with NHL 36, we are excited to extend the brand to boxing. With Zab Judah returning to his hometown of Brooklyn, we have an amazing hook for our first Fight Night 36 special."

NHL 36 is a regular series that profiles NHL players and has received acclaim since it debuted on the NBC Sports Network last December.

"The NBC Sports Network's decision to support its Fight Night professional boxing series by extending its 36 format into the sweet science is just the kind of support that our sport needs," said promoter Kathy Duva of Main Events. "Every boxer I know is his own reality show. I am quite confident that we will win lots of new fans to the sport with this type of programming. I can't wait to see the premiere.

Following are reairs of Fight Night 36: Zab Judah: March 22 at 11:30 p.m., March 23 at 9:30 a.m. and 7:30 p.m., March 24 at 6 p.m. and at 9:30 p.m. as the lead-in to the Judah-Paris fight. All times are ET.

Team Kovalev upset with Square Ring for 'protecting Sillakh'

BIG BEAR, Calif. (March 14. 2012) -- Team Kovalev blames Square Ring for a verbally agreed upon North American Boxing Federation "(NABF") title fight between unbeaten light heavyweights, challenger Sergey Kovalev and defending champion Ismayl Sillakh, to fall apart due to a contractual dispute. Sillakh-Kovalev, according to Kovalev's manager Egis Klimas, had been approved as the main event for a proposed April 27tht ESPN Friday Night Fights show in Atlantic City.

"It would have been special having two Russian-born fighters headlining an ESPN card," Klimas said. "I understand that it was quickly approved because everybody in boxing knows it would have been a very good fight. We agreed to everything, including short money, to step-up and fight Sillakh on national television. I have a lot of respect for Ismayl as a fighter but his people are doing him a disservice. Everything was good on both sides but, right before Square Ring sent me a contract, I learned from the matchmaker about there being options on my fighter if he won. I would have agreed to a rematch if Sergey won a decision, but I wouldn't be doing my job if I gave them four options written in the contract. They couldn't lose either way if I signed that contract."

Kovalev (17-0-1, 15 KOs), born in Chelyabinsk but now living in Big Bear, California, was a highly-decorated Russian amateur boxer (193-22). Trained by Abel Sanchez, Sergey is the reigning WBC Asian Boxing Council 175-pound champion, rated No. 12 by the World Boxing Council ("WBC").

Ukrainian-born Sillakh (17-0, 14 KOs) lives in Simi Valley, California. The 27-year-old is highly rated - #2 World Boxing Council, #6 International Boxing Federation ("IBF"), #10 World Boxing Association ("WBA") and #10 The Ring Magazine - and considered a rising star in boxing. Unable to get any of the world champions or top contenders in the ring, Sillakh has been portrayed by Square Ring as being the most feared fighter in his division, which Klimas' asserts is nothing more than promotional propaganda.

"This is just another example of a promoter protecting its fighter, which is exactly what's wrong with boxing today," an irate Klimas added. "Sillakh's NABF title defense is overdue and they sent out an email to a lot of top light heavyweights looking for a fight. We accepted the challenge but then they put four options in the contract. They can't have it both ways. If Sillakh is the best light heavyweight in the world, somebody that no other top light heavyweight will fight, as they claim, why do they need four options on my fighter? I can see putting a rematch clause in the contract. I asked John Wirt (President of Square Ring) why he put four options in the contract and he said to protect his fighter and company. I guess they aren't really sure Sillakh can beat Kovalev."

Kovalev is a promotional free-agent who, based on recent conversations conducted by Klimas, has offers on the table from a few major promoters to sign an exclusive contract.

Go online to for more information about Sergey Kovalev.

Article posted on 14.03.2012

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