23.10.03 – Carlos “Stiff-jab” Kalinchuk: This afternoon in front of a packed press core and a sizable crowd at the Crown Plaza Hotel in Houston Texas, Oscar DelaHoya’s Boxeo De Oro steam rolled into town for today’s weigh in and tomorrow nights show at the Reliant Arena. The weigh in featured Houstons’ own “La Voz Del Box” Lupe Contreras emceeing the event. After all the fighters were announced, the main event and the co-featured fighters were allowed to comment on the fight. Super Bantamweights Jose Luis Valbuena 23-2-1 (13 KO’s) and Houstons’ David Donis 24-4-4 (2KO’s) were allowed to take the mike first.
Jose Valbuena 23-2-1 (13 KO’s) had this to say, ”I want to thank Oscar and Golden Boy Promotions for making this fight happen since my other Promoter could not live up to his obligations. I’m hoping with Golden Boy I’ll be able to contend for a world title. Thanks and I promise I will win this fight by knock out!”
This of course did not set well with David “El Tormentoso” Donis 24-4-4 (2KO’s) but he handled the comment in stride. “I don’t know about that (Valbuena’s comment) but anyway! I want to give thanks for everyone that’s here today and everyone that did their part to get me were I’m at right now. Tomorrow will be shine time so let’s get it on baby!”
After this, Emcee Lupe Contreras introduced main event fighters Humberto Aranda 28-11 (17 KO’s) Raul “El Diamante” Marquez 34-2 (23 KO’s).
Humberto Aranda had this to say, “I feel real happy and grateful to Oscar DelaHoya and the press for how well they’ve treated me to this point. I am thankful to be fighting for Golden Boy and I’m going to fight my style tomorrow night, which is fight, fight, and fight. I want to put on a good show for the people of Costa Rica and for my future-Thank you.”
Raul Marquez added, “I remember 14 years ago when me and Oscar used to sit around in the dorms of the Olympic training center in bunk beds and we used to sit there and eat sunflower seeds and throw them on the floor and the room was a mess! We would talk about careers and how it would be when we become World Champions and how many titles we would win. How every promoter we would sign with and how we would be a package (deal). I tell you what; I wish I had been a package because I’d have about $50 million just like Oscar has (laughs)! But anyways, I’m very fortunate that Oscar has come here to Houston and promoted the show. I’m very excited that he’s supporting my career. I asked him for his help and now I’m headlining his show on HBO Latino and it feels good to have some one as powerful as Oscar backing me up. I have Humberto Aranda in front of me and this guy is not going to be an easy fighter and he knocked out Ricardo Mayorga a few years back. And as you know, Mayorga is one of the hottest fighters right now and he recently beat Vernon Forrest twice so this is not an easy fight! I want to thank all the press for being here and all the fans for being here and it’s going to be a great show. The biggest show that’s come to Houston in a long time with me being the Main Event and Oscar’s promoting it so…get your tickets because they’re going fast and I hope to see everyone there. Thank you.”
Once he stepped to the mike Oscar informed everyone that he had literally just gotten off the plane from LA. Oscar spoke at length about the main and co-main event and the card itself. “With the Golden Boy Promotions fights, we make sure that every opponent is NOT mismatched. Every single fighter has to work hard. Every single fighter has to train hard because it’s NO walk in the park! If you’ve seen the HBO Latino telecasts you’d know that every single card has been a good one and a hard one for the fighters and that’s because of the matchmakers. Thanks to my matchmakers Don Chargin and Hall of Fame matchmaker Larry Bowens. This fight card especially (and not because Raul Marquez is on the card fighting Humberto Aranda) as you know now, Aranda beat and knocked out Ricardo Mayorga. “
The co-main event is going to be a special fight and the reason why is because it’s for the IBF Jr. Featherweight elimination bout. The winner of this bout will face Manny Pacquiao which (as you know) is facing Marco Antonio Barrera November 15, on HBO. But this fight here is going to be a very competitive fight. We’re looking forward to this fight. Like I said before, it’s not a walk in the park. These guys are going to come out and fight because they want to prove that they can be Champions especially on the Golden Boy Promotions fight cards. The fighters want to prove that they can become a name in boxing. I hope we can offer it and open the doors for all these young fighters who want to become somebody in the sport. David Donis’s record is 24-4-2 and he’s fighting out of Houston and he’s the number 5 World contender and it’s a fight that people shouldn’t miss. It’s going to be a “war” like we say in boxing. Jose Luis Valbuena is 23-2-1 from Venezuela. He’s been up there with the best and he’s been the number 3 World contender which is going to be a really really good fight so don’t miss that one!”
“And now for the Main Event and Raul Marquez. He’s a fighter and a friend who’s been working hard and training hard and he’s won World titles. He’s been a top ten contender for a long time. He did face Shane Mosley in his last fight (and in my eyes) he did a good job even though the fight was only 3-4 rounds he did an excellent job. He showed that he’s still hungry to be in the “game” and he’s still hungry to be a World Champion again and the reason we made this fight is that he’s here to win. And his opponent Aranda’s is here to be a World Champion and to become a contender and that’s the reason we’ve made this fight. We’ve made this fight because it’s going to be an exciting fight even though we’re used to seeing Raul Marquez down on ringside commentating. The fight is going to be a good change for him to be showcased on HBO Latino with Golden Boy Promotions so to the people here in Houston, thank you very much all the support that you’ve given me in my personal career, but thank you for giving your support to your local hero, Raul Marquez and to this card which I assure you will be an exciting fight card for tomorrow, so thank you very much.”
There will be 6 bouts on the card so don’t miss the action! Miguel Martin 14-0 will be fighting Florencio Ibarra for the Miller Lite Texas Title Belt. Light Heavyweight Larry Vaughn 5-1 will be fighting Brock Groom 5-1. Super Lightweight Derrick Moon will be fighting Lee Deleon plus Light Heavyweight Jesus “Chuey” Ruiz 17-3 will be taking on Tyrone Jackson.
Doors open at 7:30 pm. It should be an entertaining card and a large crowd should be on hand, so avoid the long lines and get your tickets early! Tickets are $20, $30, $40, and $75 for ringside seating. Tickets are also available at all Ticketmaster outlets and Fiesta Supermercado. To purchase tickets by phone simply call 713-629-3700.
Carlos “Stiff-jab” Kalinchuk
Contributing Writer & Photographer