News: Gabriel Ruelas; John Thompson; Boyd Melson

Studio City, CA (June 11) Imagine coming to America at age seven, having never worn, let alone owned a pair of shoes in your life. That is only one of many hardships overcome by brothers Rafael and Gabriel Ruelas on their way to simultaneously becoming World Champions and adored by their fans and the world of boxing..

Having worked the entirety of their young lives in Mexico instead of going to school, it seemed natural for the boys to sell candy door to door after school when they emigrated to Southern California. Gabriel had stopped to make a sale at the "neighborhood" gym of boxing trainer Joe Goossen, and upon seeing the ring and bags, asked Goossen to teach him the sport.

"I was reluctant at first, because here you have a 13-year-old kid asking for help and I was training professionals so I tried to send him away," said Joe Goossen of young Gabriel.

Alonzo Strongbow, the #1 Flyweight in the World was there and persuaded Joe to give Gabriel a shot because he 'saw something in his eyes.'

Gabriel asked several times if he could bring younger brother Rafael into the gym too. Joe denied the request on multiple occasions until he realized that he needed someone to spar with Gabriel, so he conceded and the next day Rafael put down his box of candy and came in to the gym.

"The very first day Rafael joined his brother, we put the gloves and headgear on him and threw him in the ring with Gabriel who gave his little brother a beating, until Rafael just used his natural ability and was able to slip away from several of the punches his brother was throwing," Joe Goossen reflects. "I remember Frankie Duarte (top world contender) and I were watching this and nudging each other. We both knew what incredible talent we had in our gym, and now we had two of them!

"At the time I may not have known it, but I've certainly come to realize that this was a very special, once in a lifetime relationship between a trainer and a fighter. Then to have actually been successful with it, and turn these young kids into two World Champions was extraordinary and I'm quite proud of them. It's a team effort on something like this and their dedication and desire to perfect what they were doing was unparalleled."

Goossen Tutor Promotions is bringing a prominent reoccurring boxing series, titled "Live at the Lodge" back to the San Fernando Valley reflective of their "Country Club Series" in the 80s which enabled Gabriel and Rafael and many others to hone their skills in becoming World Champions. The first of these shows will be held June 23 at the Sportsmen's Lodge in Studio City, Calif. and will be broadcast live on Telefutura's hit series "Solo Boxeo Tecate."

Dan and Joe Goossen will be honoring the "Candy Kids" at the inaugural event for their contribution to the sport of boxing and the incredibly inspiring success story of the two World Champion boxers, and their rise from selling candy upon their arrival in America to success in and out of the ring.

"Little did I know twenty some odd years ago we would be honoring Gabriel and Rafael Ruelas for their achievements in the sport of boxing," Dan Goossen said fondly. "They were literally selling candy door-to-door in the neighborhood as 11 and 12 year-olds and stumbled across my brother's gym. They told my brother Joe they wanted to become boxers and the next thing I know they each became World Champions. They have been the benchmark for hard-work, dedication, heart and loyalty for every fighter we've signed since. Even today, I find that the Ruelas brothers are fondly remembered by boxing fans."

"It's a great honor to receive this recognition, especially in the valley where we grew up and had so many fights right here at the Reseda Country Club," said Rafael Ruelas. "I try not to get too close to boxing and reflect back on my career too often because it brings back a lot of great memories. I miss the sport tremendously and I'm just very grateful to be receiving an honor like this."

His brother Gabriel modestly stated, "It is very special to be receiving any kind of award in boxing, especially with so many World Champions who could be on the receiving end. I think what we had was a special scenario that was so unique because the Goossen's really took us in. I didn't look at them as a trainer and a promoter, they were family. That kind of loyalty is hard to come by anywhere, let alone in boxing."

The event will be broadcast on TeleFutura's hit series "Solo Boxeo Tecate" and promoted by Goossen Tutor Promotions.

Tickets priced at $103.50 VIP, $52.50 Ringside & $32.50 are on sale at or by calling the Goossen Tutor office at (818) 817-8001. Tickets will also be available the day of the event at the Lodge.


Thompson to battle Mackey on Adamek – Chambers undercard in Newark

NEWARK (June 11, 2012)—This Saturday night at the Prudential Center, undefeated Middleweight prospect John “ApolloKidd” Thompson will look to make it 9-0 when he takes on the toughest and most experience foe of his career in John Mackey
Thompson, twenty-three years old of Newark and Mackey will fight a six round bout at the Prudential Center as part of the undercard that will feature Tomasz Adamek and Eddie Chambers on NBC Sports Network.

Mackey of Montgomery, Alabama has a record of 13-6-3 with six knockouts has wins over the likes of Tim Leonard (3-0-1); Tony Cygan (12-1) Alexander Mancea (7-1) & Donald Orr (15-0) and has faced the likes of Anthony Greenidge (12-1); Cecil McCalla (6-0); Derek Ennis (17-2-1); James McGirt Jr. (21-2-1) and Tarvis Simms (26-1-1).

Mackey has draws with Jesse Nicklow (19-1-1) and his last bout on October 7th when he drew with Vladine Biosse (11-1) in Biosse’s home area of Providence.

Thompson is not worried about the experience that Mackey brings to the table.

“He is not much of a boxer, he is a brawler/puncher”, said Thompson

“I am going to work hard to prove that I am the better boxer.”

Thompson is looking forward to facing the veteran as it should be a coming out performance.

“This is a fight that should open doors. He is ranked twenty-two and I am at sixty-three”

It should be a great atmosphere on Saturday as usually tens of thousands pack the Prudential Center for an Adamek fight and Thompson is looking forward to putting on a show in his hometown.

“This is the biggest event I have been on and I consider the Prudential Center the MGM Grand of the East Coast. It is going to be a great experience and I will put on as great of a show as I can”

Thompson is promoted by Gabe Laconte’s First Round Promotions and is managed by Vito Mielnicki.

“My boxer is ready and focused on becoming a world champ in the near future and this is another step towards the top”, said Mielnicki

Melson Fractures Orbital Bone; Gallegos Bout Cancelled

New York, NY (June 9, 2012) – Due to a fractured orbital bone in his left eye, Captain Boyd “Rainmaker” Melson withdrew from his scheduled June 14 bout against Enrique Gallegos in New York City.

Melson, 8-1 (4 KO’s), suffered the injury during a sparring session and was left with no choice but to cancel due to proximity to fight night.

“I’m extraordinarily frustrated," said Melson, a West Point Graduate who donates all of his fight purses to “This is one less purse I can donate for the trial with my full-time employer Johnson&Johnson matching donations 2-1. “Early assessments from the trial in China have a few of the paralyzed Spinal Cord Injury patients having received the therapy that enabled them to walk, so getting these funds are extremely important so we can have the trials in the US. Additionally, I’m dying to get back in the win column following my last fight in March.”

Melson will be sidelined for six weeks and expects to return to the squared circle in early August.

All ticketholders who made in person purchases that would like a refund can receive them at Mendez Gym and all tickets bought via Paypal will be refunded to the account holder.

In association with, Melson created Team Fight to Walk, whose mission is to raise awareness within the boxing community as well as the entire nation about the importance of bringing Clinical Trials to the United States to help cure Spinal Cord Injuries. Team Fight to Walk is comprised of Melson, former two-time cruiserweight champion Steve “USS” Cunningham, title contender DeAndre “The Bull” Latimore, Edgar “El Chamaco” Santana, Hector “Machito” Camacho Jr., 2008 US Olympians Demetrius “Boo” Andrade and Shawn Estrada along with prospects Sid “The Messenger” El Harrak, Denis “Da Momma’s Boy” Douglin, Will “Power” Rosinsky, Floriano “Italiano” Pagliara, Danny “Little Mac” McDermott, Vinny “The Lion” O’Brien, Ahmed “Prince of Egypt” Samir and Delen “Sniper” Parsley.

For more information or to make a donation, go to or All specific questions about the nature of the Clinical Trial to cure Spinal Cord Injury can be sent to

Article posted on 11.06.2012

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