Three action-packed world championship fights will act as co-main events to the MANNY “Pacman” PACQUIAO – JESSIE VARGAS World Boxing Organization (WBO) welterweight world title fight, Saturday, November 5, at the Thomas & Mack Center on the campus of the University of Nevada, Las Vegas. Promoted by Top Rank, in association with MP Promotions and Wynn Las Vegas, the Pacquiao – Vargas world welterweight championship event will be produced and distributed live by Top Rank Pay-Per-View, beginning at 9:00 p.m. ET / 6:00 p.m. PT, and will be available on all conventional platforms, including all major cable and satellite systems, as well as Top Rank’s digital distribution via www.TopRank.tv and mobile devices.
NONITO “The Filipino Flash” DONAIRE and ÓSCAR VALDEZ, WBO junior featherweight and featherweight champions, respectively, will be risking their crowns in mandatory title defenses against their respective No. 1 contenders JESSIE MAGDALENO and HIROSHIGE OSAWA. The pay-per-view telecast will open with Chinese Olympic icon ZOU SHIMING in a 12-round rumble with PRASITAK PAPOEM for the vacant WBO flyweight world title. This marks the first time Pacquiao and Donaire, the two biggest boxing stars to come out of the Philippines, have ever shared the same card.
The six co-main event gladiators, representing six different countries, have a combined record of 158-8-6 (104 KOs) — a winning percentage of 92% with nearly 2/3 of those victories coming by way of knockout.
Remaining tickets to the Pacquiao vs. Vargas world championship event are priced at $1,000, $700, $500, $300, $100 and $50, not including applicable service fees. They may be purchased at the Thomas & Mack Center Box Office, online at http://www.unlvtickets.com/, at UNLVtickets Outlet Town Square Las Vegas and La Bonita Supermarkets. To charge by phone call 702-739-FANS (3267) or 866-388-FANS (3267).
“Jessie is a great challenger, a mandatory title defense and I know he’s hungry because he has been calling me out on social media,” said Donaire. “I am working great with my new trainer Ismael Salas. We are learning about each other and he’s instructing me on a more precise, compact way of fighting while still being very explosive as everyone is going to see on November 5.”
“Nonito is one of the greatest boxers of all time,” said Donaire’s manager Cameron Dunkin. “He’s fought the best and he’s beat the best. He’s faced many tough challenges. This is a very tough challenge but this is what Nonito does.”
“As a kid I’ve dreamt of this moment and the time is finally here. On November 5th I will be victorious with my hands raised up high and a belt around my waist,” said Magdaleno.
“It’s a pleasure to work with Jessie Magdaleno. We’ve been working together since July 23, and so far training camp has been great, the weight hasn’t been an issue, sparring hasn’t been an issue as he has been working with top notch boxers and the workload has not been an issue. He has embraced the work, and is definitely up to the challenge as he faces Nonito Donaire,” said Manuel Robles, Magdaleno’s trainer.
“Jessie Magdaleno is very, very motivated for his fight against Nonito Donaire,” said Frank Espinoza, Magdaleno’s manager.. “Nonito has been a great champion and has fought in many big fights for a long time. But this is Jessie’s time. He has worked hard and he has what it takes to win and become a world champion.”
“As a world champion you have to face tough challenges and my first defense will be against a tough challenger, but I am ready to face him,” said Valdez. “I worked hard to get my belt and I intend to keep it for a long time.”
“Óscar Valdez always works very hard to get ready for his fights. He will be even more focused and work even harder defending his championship belt on November 5 than he was when he won it back in July,” said Valdez’s trainer Manuel Robles.
“Óscar Valdez won his world championship with a spectacular performance in July and on November 5, I am sure he will give us another great fight and successfully defend his belt,” said Frank Espinoza, Valdez’s manager.
“The boxing ring has always been a world stage where I have been able to fulfill my dreams. It has given me countless opportunities to challenge myself and surpass my limits which I have always found more important than defeating an opponent,” said Zou. “Though my first world title fight was not as successful as I had hoped, I have focused even more on developing and improving myself mentally and physically to meet the challenge of fighting for another world title. I have worked hard to get this second opportunity and I will work even harder in training camp to succeed. On November 5, I will enter the ring fueled by the strength of the Chinese people. Together we will make our mark on boxing history.”
“Prasitak may look like Manny Pacquiao but he sure doesn’t fight like him. He’s dirty as hell. The last time we fought him, Prasitak was head butting and landing low blows on Shiming throughout the fight. But just to play it safe, I’ll have Shiming spar with Manny when we get back from Manila so we’re extra prepared,” said Zou’s Hall of Fame trainer Freddie Roach.
“Zou is rated No. 2 and I am rated No. 3, but that is the only thing that has remained the same from our first fight,” said Prasitak. “I am a much different fighter than the man Zou fought in China two years ago. I have knocked everyone out since that fight and I have developed elephant strength punching power. I look forward to avenging my only loss and becoming world champion on November 5.”
“Top Rank is very proud to be presenting such a special pay-per-view event,”: said Hall of Fame promoter Bob Arum. “Las Vegas will truly be the boxing capital of the world on November 5 with a championship card featuring the best fighters from six different countries.”
Donaire (37-3, 24 KOs), of General Santos City, Philippines, now living in Las Vegas, is a five-division world champion. He regained the WBO junior featherweight crown on December 11, 2015, winning a 12-round unanimous decision over No. 1 world-rated contender Cesar Juarez for the vacant title. His banner year in 2012 featured four world championship victories which included beating former world champion Israel Vazquez, Jr. to capture the vacant WBO junior featherweight title, unifying the title by defeating International Boxing Federation (IBF) junior bantamweight champion Jeffrey Mathebula, followed by Donaire collecting his third belt of the year with a knockout of World Boxing Council (WBC) Diamond Belt super bantamweight champion Toshiaki Nishioka, ending Nishioka’s eight-year, 16-bout, winning streak, and concluding his magnificent year by blasting out Mexican icon Jorge Arce in the third round and sealing his 2012 Fighter of the Year honors while extending his 12-year, 30-bout winning streak. He lost his title to undefeated Cuban sensation and WBA super bantamweight champion Guillermo Rigondeaux in a title unification bout at a sold-out Radio City Music Hall on April 13, 2013. He bounced back in 2014, dethroning World Boxing Association (WBA) featherweight world champion Simpiwe Vetyeka in Macau, China. Career highlights for Donaire also include knockout victories of world champions Vic Darchinyan, Wladimir Sidorenko, and Fernando Montiel, ending Montiel’s 25-bout winning streak. That victory was named the 2011 Knockout of the Year. Donaire returns to the ring fresh from his first title defense, a third-round knockout of Hungarian Olympian Zsolt Bedak on April 23. The fight took place outdoors in Cebu and attracted 30,000 fans despite the extremely hot and humid conditions.
Magdaleno (23-0, 17 KOs), from Las Vegas, NV, enters this fight having won eight of his last 10 bouts by knockout. The former U.S. Amateur Champion has crafted a sterling professional ring record since making his professional debut on November 6, 2010. The younger brother of lightweight contender Diego Magdaleno, Jessie is a southpaw whose aggressive style and fierce punching power has produced a victory by knockout ratio of 73% en route to becoming the WBO’s No. 1 contender and mandatory challenger.
Valdez (21-0, 18 KOs), from Nogales, Mexico, and who represented Mexico in the 2008 and 2012 Olympics, was the first Mexican fighter to qualify for two Olympic games. He is considered one of the bright lights of the featherweight division and a new face for boxing’s next generation. He will be making the first defense of the vacant world title he won on July 23 via a second-round knockout of undefeated No. 2 rated Matías Rueda. Rueda entered that fight having won his previous 10 bouts by stoppage. Valdez, 26, started the year with a fourth-round knockout victory over former IBF featherweight champion Evgeny Gradovich on the April 9 Pacquiao – Tim Bradley III pay-per-view undercard in Las Vegas. It was the first time Gradovich had ever been stopped in his 24-bout professional career. Other career highlights include knockout victories of former world title challengers Ruben Tamayo and Chris Avalos.
Osawa (30-3-4, 19 KOs), from Osaka, Japan, will be making his U.S. debut. He enters this fight riding a seven-year, 16-bout unbeaten streak, with 12 victories coming by way of knockout, including his last 10. He returns to the ring fresh from a first-round knockout of Yon Armed on April 2, where he captured the WBO Asia-Pacific featherweight title and solidified his position as the No. 1 contender and mandatory challenger to Valdez.
Zou (8-1, 2 KOs), from Guizhou, China, returns to the ring fresh from his U.S. pro debut, which took place on June 11 at Madison Square Garden. He defeated Jozsef Ajtai of Hungary by a lopsided unanimous decision. He started the year out with a bang, knocking out undefeated contender Natan Santana Coutinho, to regain the WBO International flyweight title, on January 30, in Shanghai. Zou’s professional career highlights include a 12-round decision loss t to International Boxing Federation (IBF) flyweight world champion Amnat Ruenroeng in 2015 and a 12-round unanimous decision victory over undefeated No. 3 contender Kwanpichit Onesongchaigym in a world flyweight title elimination bout. Their fight was the co-main event to the Pacquiao – Chris Algieri world welterweight championship on November 22, 2014 in Macau, China. Zou scored three knockdowns en route to a 119-106, 119-106 and 120-103 victory over his vastly more experienced opponent. He showed his mettle by fighting through numerous head butts that swelled his left eye shut as well as weathering numerous low blows. But Zou kept his composure throughout the fight showing the world he was ready for a world title shot. Zou captured his first WBO International flyweight title on July 19, 2014, stepping up to his first 10-round fight and winning a unanimous decision over Top-10 contender Luis De La Rosa, proving to the world that he had developed into a world title contender. Zou is currently world-rated No. 2 by the WBO and No. 3 by the IBF. One of the most popular Olympic athletes in China, Zou was the world’s greatest amateur light flyweight, capturing gold medals in the World Amateur Championships in 2005, 2007 and 2011, along with gold medals in the 2008 and 2012 Summer Olympic Games. He also owns an Olympic bronze medal from the 2004 games, making him his nation’s first Olympic medallist in boxing as well as its first boxing gold medallist in the World Amateur Championships and the Olympics.
Prasitak (39-1-2, 24 KOs), of Buriram, Thailand, made his professional debut in 2010 and captured the WBO Oriental junior bantamweight title the following year knocking out Fredirex Rodriguez in the seventh round. After one successful defense he moved down one division where he captured the WBO Oriental flyweight title in 2012, which he successfully defended six time during his two-year reign. After losing a unanimous decision to Zou in 2014, he regained the WBO Oriental flyweight title on April 3, 2015 by knocking out Haji Juma in the 12th round. Since his loss to Zou, Prasitak has fashioned a two-year, 12-bout winning streak, with all of his victories coming by way of knockout, including five defenses of his WBO Oriental flyweight title. Prasitak, who will be making his U.S. debut, is currently world-rated No. 3 by the WBO.
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