Ring City USA, the new sports media startup that debuted its Thursday night boxing series in November 2020, will host its next live event from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. on Thursday, April 22. The event, which will be headlined by a matchup of two undefeated American heavyweights, will be televised on NBC Sports Network (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT) with bonus undercard action streaming live around the world on Twitch. Armed Forces Network Europe and Pacific will make the broadcast available to U.S. Forces serving overseas on AFN TV.
The nation’s most notable military service academy will host a full evening of boxing action headlined by Ring City’s first ever heavyweight main event when two undefeated American heavyweights Jermaine Franklin (20-0, 13 KOs) and Stephan Shaw (14-0, 10 KOs) meet in a ten-round fight. Franklin, who hails from Saginaw, Mich., will return from an 18-month layoff to face his toughest and most experienced challenger to date. Franklin, 27, notched three impressive decision victories in 2019, including a win over fellow top American heavyweight Jerry Forrest. Shaw, 28, will take another step in his development as he faces the first unbeaten fighter of his professional career in Franklin. Born and raised in Saint Louis, Shaw has flashed devastating power with all 10 of his career knockouts coming within four rounds.
“This will be the historic first-time professional bouts will occur at West Point,” said Ray Barone, Army West Point Boxing Coach. “We’ve been asked before, but never has a boxing event been brought to us the way Ring City and NBC has. We want to showcase the cadets. We want to demonstrate that amateur boxing when conducted properly is safe. And we hope that this will become an annual event.”
RING CITY USA ANNOUNCES TWO COMPELLING FIGHTS FOR NBC SPORTS NETWORK MAIN CARD ON THURSDAY, APRIL 22 EVENT FROM WEST POINT, N.Y.
Co-Main Event Features Jelena Mrjdenovich vs. Erika Cruz Hernandez in Women’s Featherweight World Title Bout; Juan Pablo Romero and Jonathan Navarro Meet in Battle of Unbeaten Junior Welterweight Prospects
Los Angeles – April 8, 2021 – Ring City USA today announced two compelling undercard matchups that will round out the main card for its Thursday, April 22 event from the U.S. Military Academy at West Point, N.Y. and live on NBC Sports Network (9 p.m. ET/6 p.m. PT).
The co-main event of the evening is a women’s featherweight world title bout between WBA World Champion Jelena Mrdjenovich (41-10-2, 19 KOs) of Edmonton, Canada, and world ranked contender Erika Cruz Hernandez (12-1-0, 3 KOs) of Mexico City, Mexico, scheduled for ten rounds. Also featured on the NBC Sports Network main card is a highly anticipated clash between top undefeated junior welterweight prospects Juan Pablo ‘El Pivi’ Romero (13-0, 9 KOs) of Villa del Carbon, Mexico and Jonathan ‘Thunder’ Navarro (17-0, 9 KOs) of East Los Angeles, Calif., scheduled for ten rounds.
Mrdjenovich, 38, returns to the Ring City USA squared circle following her fifth world title defense, a 10-round unanimous decision victory against Iranda Paolo Torres on December 17, 2020 at the Wild Card Boxing Gym in Los Angeles, Calif. The three-division world champion won the WBA world title in March 2016 defeating champion Edith Matthysse. A pioneer for women’s boxing in Canada, Mrdjenovich is currently the second-ranked featherweight in the world by Ring Magazine, behind only recent Ring City victor Amanda Serrano.
Upset-minded Cruz Hernandez, 30, will be challenging for her first world title. The southpaw is currently riding an 11-bout winning streak including victories over world ranked contenders Vissia Trovato and Jocelyn Morales Torres.
Making his United States debut, heavy-handed Juan Pablo Romero arrives for battle following a ten-round unanimous decision over Sergio Torres on November 28, 2020 in Mexico City, Mexico. Prior to his most recent outing, Romero, 31, has faced top competition for a rising prospect and performed well by knocking out four consecutive opponents within the first four rounds.
The 24-year-old Jonathan Navarro has become one of the most highly touted prospects in the United States since turning professional five years ago. The nephew of former perennial contenders Jose and Carlos Navarro, Jonathan is trained by the renowned Robert Garcia. Coming off a 17-month layoff, he hits the ring following a tremendous second round knockout of Lebin Morales on October 24, 2019 in Indio, CA. Among the victories on his ledger include a seventh-round knockout over then-unbeaten contender Damon Allen in August 2018.
The April 22 event from West Point, N.Y. is headlined by the previously announced heavyweight clash between undefeated contenders Jermaine Franklin (20-0, 13 KOs) and Stephan Shaw (14-0, 10 KOs). Bonus undercard action will stream live around the world on Twitch. Armed Forces Network Europe and Pacific will also make the broadcast available to U.S. Forces serving overseas on AFN TV.