Arnaoutis/Torres On Pacquiao-Morales III Undercard

13.11.06 - Undefeated junior welterweight “Mighty” Mike Arnaoutis (17-0-1, 9 KOs), a proud representative of his homeland of Greece, will come bearing the gift of leather on November 18 at the Thomas and Mack Center in Las Vegas when he takes on hard-punching Ricardo Torres (29-1, 27 KOs) for the vacant WBO title to top the undercard of the “Grand Finale” PPV featuring the Erik Morales vs. Manny Pacquiao rubber match..

It’s been a long odyssey from Greece to Las Vegas for Arnaoutis and his advisor, Mike Michael of Cestus Management – one that started years ago with a persistent young man from a country not known for its boxing. “This kid was calling me for a year before I made my mind up to go see him,” explains Michael. “I brought him back to London and put him in to spar with a guy named Steven Murray who was 18-0 and the IBF Intercontinental champion and Mike took him apart. He was in with this 18-0 guy who puts non-stop pressure on, and he more than held his own and was hurting this guy. I signed him up immediately.”

Soon the time came, says Michael, to find Arnaoutis the right promoter. “We signed a promotional deal with Joe DeGuardia from Star Boxing who is a very good friend of mine. Joe has been excellent in coming onboard and understanding what Cestus Management was doing. Joe basically got us this title shot.”

DeGuardia says he’s excited for the 27-year-old southpaw and about the prospect of adding another world champion to his stable of fighters. “Mike is already very popular with fans, having appeared on television numerous times. We’re excited he’s finally getting the chance to fulfill the promise he has shown in his sensational appearances leading up to this fight. He’s going to be the latest of our Star boxers to win a belt and we’re thrilled for him. ”

The realization that Arnaoutis’s dream to become the second world champion from Greece in boxing history could be only a week away might make others a nervous wreck. Not Arnaoutis. “He’s as good as someone can be getting ready for a world title fight,” says Michael of his fighter’s preparation. “We’ve had a real good training camp so far. Everything is going well. He just wants to get it on and he’s confident he’ll win. He doesn’t know if he’s going to knock the guy out, win on points, or score a TKO, but he does know he‘ll win the fight.”

Beating Torres will be no easy feat. The granite-fisted Colombian is best known for the seven-round slugfest he had last September with then WBO Champion Miguel Cotto, a fight in which he dropped Cotto before being stopped himself.

“Mike will have to be on his game that night,” admits DeGuardia, “but his talents and toughness are top-notch. We’re confident he’ll emerge victorious with the belt. And we know the people of his homeland will be delirious with joy when he does.”

The Arnaoutis/Torres fight will be co-promoted by Joe DeGuardia’s Star Boxing and Top Rank, in association with Wynn Las Vegas. Both the Arnaoutis fight and Pacquiao-Morales III will be scheduled for 12 rounds and broadcast live on HBO Pay-Per-View.

Article posted on 14.11.2006

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