New England’s top prospect with 10 pro fights of less, undefeated hometown favorite Irvin Gonzalez, is on a fast track going into his June 10th headline fight in the third installment of the “New England’s Future” series, at the DCU Center (Exhibition Hall) in Worcester, Massachusetts.
“New England’s Future 3” is presented by Rivera Promotions Entertainment (RPE), which is owned and operated by retired three-time, two division world champion Jose Antonio Rivera and his son, Anthonee (A.J.) Rivera.
The 21-year-old Gonzalez (6-0, 6 KOs) takes on Raul Lopez (10-2-1, 5 KOs), of Bronx (NY), in an eight-round main event for the vacant Universal Boxing Federation (UBF) All-American super featherweight championship.
Pro boxing returns to the DCU Center for the first time in 11 years, ironically, when promoter Jose Antonio Rivera defeated Alejandro Garcia, by way of a 12-round unanimous decision, for the World Boxing Association (WBA) World super welterweight title.
“I am excited to watch Irvin’s boxing career flourish,” promoter Jose Rivera remarked. “He has all the tools to become a world champion. Fighting for the UBF championship will be the first of many and I am glad that we are able to give him this opportunity. I see big things for Irvin and I hope fans come out Saturday night, June 10th, to support him and the other local boxers.”.
“This is a great opportunity for me,” Gonzalez said. “I’m blessed to be fighting in Worcester for my first title. It’s not a big title but it’s like taking baby steps to a world title. Since I started boxing at the Boys & Girls Club, I always wanted to be like Jose, a three-time world champion. Now, it’s my turn, and I’m fighting again in my city.”
Gonzalez has a perfect pro record: six rights, six wins by knockout. However, he’s only had fought a grand total of eight rounds, and June 10th he’s in a scheduled eight-round match. The well-spoken youngster isn’t concerned with the step up in rounds and opposition.
“I’ve been asked about that by a lot of media, trainers and other fighters,” he explained. “I’ve always trained like it’s for a world title fight, 12 rounds, so I’m not worried about going into deep water. I’m in magnificent shape, three weeks before the fight, and even in the amateurs I’ve always gotten stronger as the fight went along. In sparring, I get stronger, so going eight isn’t a problem for me.
“I don’t really know much about my opponent. He won a few national titles but hasn’t fought too often. I’ll see what he brings into the ring and then adjust. I know I’m taller.”
Gonzalez learned a lot when he was a sparring partner for Guillermo Rigondeaux in Florida that was supposed to be a six-week training camp that ended after three weeks due to Rigondeaux’ fight being cancelled.
“I learned a lot about different training methods that I now use,” Irvin continued. “His techniques are phenomenal. I was around a world champion, two-time Olympic gold medalist and I saw his work ethic. After all he’s accomplished, he still has a great work ethic, and I learned from him that a fighter need continue working like he does until the day it’s all over. It’s not all about money, it’s having fun every day, doing what we love.”
Former world female heavyweight champions Sonya “The Scholar” Lamonakis (10-2-2, 1 KO), the New York City teacher who lived in Turners Falls (MA), and Laura “Lady Ram” Ramsey (10-7, 5 KOs) battle for the vacant UBF World heavyweight title in the eight-round co-featured event.
Pembroke (MA) cruiserweight Vinnie “American Nightmare” Carita (16-1-1, 15 KOs) meets invading Brazilian knockout artist Marcelo Leonardo “Queizada” Da Silva (22-4, 17 KOs) in an eight-round Special Cruiserweight Attraction.
Also fighting on the undercard, all in four-round bouts, are Worcester welterweight Andy Gonzalez (6-1, 5 KOs) vs. TBA, Lawrence (MA) junior welterweight Adrian “Tonka” Sosa (2-0, 2 KOs) vs. Buffalo’s Jack Grady (0-5-1), New Haven (CT) featherweight Josh Crespo (7-4-3, 3 KOs) vs. Georgia’s Gabriel Braxton (2-18, 1 KO), Worcester featherweight Ranse Andino (1-0) vs. Woburn (MA) Gilvan Santos (0-3), Springfield (MA) junior middleweight Derrick “Double Impact” Whitley (1-0) vs. Norwalk (CT) veteran Shaka Moore (12-22-3, 2 KOs), Worcester’s pro-debuting Bobby Harris III vs. Woburn (MA) super middleweight Rodrigo Almeida (1-6), Southbridge (MA) junior welterweight Wilfredo “El Sucaro” Pagan (1-0) vs. Lawrence’s Anthony Everett (1-5), Worcester’s Bryan Daniels (4-0, 2 KOs) vs. Florida’s Christopher “The Archbishop” Boykins (1-8) at a 205-pound catchweight, Hartford’s (CT) Richie “Popeye The Sailor Man” Rivera (1-0, 1 KO) vs. Brazilian Nathan Schulte (0-2) at a 180-pound catchweight, and Worcester’s pro-debuting Neal Sullivan vs. Framingham (MA) super middleweight Saul Almeida (0-8).
All fights and fighters are subject to change.
Tickets, priced at $75.00 (ringside) and $45.00 (general admission), are on sale and available to purchase at the DCU Center box office, www.dcu.centerworcester.com,
by contacting Jose Rivera (firstname.lastname@example.org/508.864.6954), AJ Rivera
(email@example.com/774.272.2269) or any of the fighters
Doors open at 6 p.m., first bout 7 p.m. ET.
Sponsors include Lundgren Honda, Championsofhealth.usana.com, Whiskey On Water and Worcester criminal defense Atty. Michael Erlich.