North American Boxing Federation (NABF) heavyweight champion Tony “TNT” Grano, who was recently selected by the Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame as the Nutmeg state’s 2012 Professional Fighter of the Year, has moved up to No. 5 in the World Boxing Council (WBC) world heavyweight rankings.
Grano will receive his award on Saturday night, November 17 at the 8th annual Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame (CBHOF) Gala Induction in the Uncas Ballroom at Mohegan Sun.
The 2012 CBHOF Hall of Fame inductees and other 2012 award winners will be honored at the special dinner ceremony. 2012 CNHOF inductees are former World Boxing Association (WBA) light middleweight champion “Tremendous” Travis Simms, former World Boxing Union (WBU) middleweight titlist “Dangerous” Dana Rosenblatt, five-time Trainer of the Year Freddie Roach, promoter Jimmy Burchfield (Classic Entertainment and Sports, Inc.), manager George Cruz, and the late manager/promoter Lou Viscusi.
The other 2012 award winners are Elvis Figueroa, Conn. Amateur Boxer of the Year; Dick Flaherty, Official of the Year; Mitchell Etess, Contributor To Boxing
The 31-year-old Grano (20-2-1, 16 KOs), fighting out of Hebron (CT) by way of Hartford, is the first recipient of Conn Boxer of the Year award as a professional and amateur. He was selected as the amateur winner in the inaugural year of the CBHOF, after capturing a gold medal at the 2005 U.S. National Championships and silver medal at the National Golden Gloves Tournament.
The hard-hitting Grano, now promoted by legendary Don King, earned his selection as 2012 Conn. Fighter of the Year off a pair of impressive victories this year, knocking out Brian Minto (35-4) in the third-round of their NABF title eliminator, and stopping former world title challenger DaVarryl Williamson (27-6) in the fourth round this past June for the vacant NABF title.
“This is a huge honor and I’m very happy to be getting this award,” Grano said. “It shows that hard work pays off. I am honored and thank the Connecticut Boxing Hall of Fame. I really needed to step-up this year to be considered a contender. ”
Grano doesn’t have a fight scheduled but he’s hoping for a career-defining fight in the not too distant future. “I’ll mix it up with anybody,” Grano continued. “I’m playing the waiting game right now. My promoter, Don King, won the purse bid for the WBC (heavyweight) title eliminator between (Chris) Arreola and (Bermane) Stiverne. We’re waiting to hear where and when and I hope to fight in the co-feature. I’m looking to be in a big fight against a top 10 opponent, guys like (Seth) Mitchell and (Tomasz) Adamek. I’ve sparred with (WBC heavyweight champion) Vitali (Klitschko) and feel ready for anybody.”
Tickets for the 8th annual CBHOF Gala Induction Dinner, reasonably priced at $75.00, are on sale now by calling Kim Baker at Mohegan Sun (1.860-.862.7377) or Sherman Cain at the Manchester Journal Inquirer (1.800.237.3606 X321). Doors open at 5:30 p.m. ET, cocktails at 6 p.m. ET, followed by dinner.
Go online to www.ctboxinghof.com for additional information about the CBHOF.
Boxing 360 signs Undefeated Light Middleweight Prospect Alantez Fox
Undefeated Light middleweight prospect, Alantez Fox (7-0-1, 3 KOs) of Forestville, Maryland, has signed an agreement with New York based promotional company Boxing 360. At age 20, Fox stands 6’5 with a 79 inch reach, giving him a height and reach advantage against most light middleweights.
While fighting as an amateur, Alantez had an extensive career having fought around 200 bouts winning close to 160 of them. Using his height and reach to give his opponents problems, Fox is very agile for a man of his stature.
In his last fight, Fox fought Frank Galarza (7-0-1, 4 KOs) in his backyard and came out with a draw. Never afraid to face a stiff challenge, Alantez will make his way back to the ring on November 3, 2012, against an opponent TBA. He’s looking to extend on his unbeaten streak.
“Boxing 360 has a good reputation of taking care of its fighters and I’m happy to be signed by them,” said Fox. “When Mario Yagobi approached me with the contract I felt comfortable and that was important to me. I’m looking forward to my next fight and I’m excited about my future.”
Alantez is trained by his father Troy, who feels he has the tools to become a world champion. With his son’s fight around the corner, he feels good about signing with Boxing 360.
“Alantez and I talked and we feel Yagobi is going to move us in the right direction.” said Troy Fox. “For those who don’t know much about my son, he moves well for a tall rangy fighter. He’s got good power, decent hand speed and he uses his height and reach very well. I can see him becoming a world champion if he can maintain focus.”
“I can see Alantez giving anyone in the light middleweight division problems because of his unique physique,” stated Boxing 360 promoter Mario Yagobi. “As long as he stays healthy I want to keep him fighting.”
PRO BOXER TACKLES 10K OBSTACLE COURSE FOR CHARITY
County Durham boxing star Bradley Saunders stepped out of the ring last Saturday to enter into a gruelling 10k obstacle course race all in the name of charity.
Greystoke Castle in Penrith, Cumbria played host over the weekend of the 20th and 21st October to a whole array of competitors from all backgrounds to take part in the punishing endurance course to raise money for Newcastle Royal Victoria Infirmary.
The 10K ‘No Ego Challenges’ are not for the feint hearted and will test competitor’s stamina, strength and agility. The first ever No Ego ‘Mud’ Challenge is one of the toughest courses in the UK, with 25 gruelling obstacles including ‘The Mangle’, ‘Scafell Pike’, ‘Tunnel of Mud’ and ‘Getting Tyred’.
Saunders’ high fitness levels and toughened exterior stood him in very stead for the race. “It was really worth the drive over there. There was well over 100 people taking part and me being like I am, I decided to race everyone! I only came runner up by 10 seconds, beaten by a marathon runner.”
Since turning professional, Bradley has been on the biggest UK boxing shows sharing the limelight with world champions such as David Haye and Scotland’s Ricky Burns. The exposure is beginning to pay off and recognition is heightening with each stunning display in the ring.
With such an increasing profile, the Sedgefield light welterweight is keen to keep his feet on the ground and to give something back by participating in such events as these. “I really enjoyed it, people there were great and it’s good to get recognised and complimented by everyone. Doing that for charity makes me feel loads better in myself. Loads of family’s suffer from cancer some way or another so it felt like I was doing it for everyone.”
Anyone can take part in the testing fitness challenges by visiting www.noegochallenge.com and completing the application form.
The hard hitting 26 year old is due to fight next month, November 30th in Manchester MEN Arena on what will be his fifth outing in his first year in the professional ranks.
Although sharing the bill with ex-cricketer and television personality turned professional boxer, Freddie Flintoff, Bradley is determined to steal the publicity once again.
Saunders performed terrifically in his match up against seasoned veteran Ivan Godor last September in a show dubbed ‘The Battle of Britain’. This was easily the most eagerly anticipated event of the boxing year between England’s exciting Kevin Mitchell and Scotland’s two weight World Champion Ricky Burn’s.
Bradley took his chances in front of Glasgow’s SECC capacity crowd to knock down the durable Slovakian three times before the referee called an end to the contest. This was the experienced 32 year old’s first stoppage at the hands of Saunders for over three and a half years when he was knocked out by unbeaten prospect Krzysztof Szot in Poland in April 2009. Many other big names in British boxing have failed to stop the robust Godor such as Martin Gethin, Tyrone Nurse and Karl Place.
This was a big statement for Saunders to make and one that has propelled him through the British rankings.
Headlining the next show will be equally matched lightweights Liam Walsh and Paul Truscott. Walsh is one of three boxing brothers that all turned professional together and caused a media frenzy when they fought their debuts live on ITV back in 2008. Liam is enjoying the most success, extending his unbeaten run to 13 fights (10 KO’s) following victory against Domenico Urbano to attain the vacant WBO European lightweight title last July.
The talented north east fighter will be performing in his first eight rounder which can be considered as risky so early on in his career. Speaking from the gym in his first day back training, Saunders claimed “It’s unheard of someone fighting an eight rounder in their fifth fight. I’ll take it as it comes but if the shots are there I will take him out. Whatever happens I’ll be more than fit for the full eight rounds.”
The promising 26 year old is rocketing his way through the pro ranks following a long and illustrious amateur career that saw him winning gold and silver medals in commonwealth games beating world ranked number 1 boxers and a bronze medal at the World Championships.
Naturally on the lookout for sponsorship from a company that will join in with the journey to the top.
If you would like to know more about sponsorship opportunities then please contact Sports Marketing Manager Tim Rickson at [email protected]
You can follow the rising star on Twitter @BRADSAUNDERS_ and follow his success on official website www.bradleysaunders.com or on Facebook. For tickets to the show in Manchester please call 07414 112 022