YOUNGSTOWN, OH (December 17, 2007) — Undefeated world middleweight champion and “Fighter of the Year” candidate KELLY “THE GHOST” PAVLIK officially opened his Youngstown-based training camp today in preparation for his rematch against the man he dethroned, once-beaten Jermain “Bad Intentions” Taylor. Promoted by Top Rank and DiBella Entertainment, the 12-round Pavlik-Taylor II rumble will take place Saturday, February 16, at MGM Grand in Las Vegas, and will be produced and distributed live by HBO Pay-Per-View, beginning at 9 p.m. EST / 6 p.m. PST..
Which game plan will trainer Jack Loew be using from Kelly’s blue book this time?
“We are training like this is Round Eight of the first fight, continuing where we left off when we beat Jermain the first time,” said Loew, the only trainer Pavlik has ever had and a “Trainer of the Year” candidate himself. “When it comes to fighting, Kelly is a powerful combination of Youngstown steel and moxie. It’s going to be another night of fireworks. To paraphrase Joe Louis, ‘Jermain can run but he can’t hide’ and believe me, Kelly is going to make Jermain fight.”
Pavlik, boxing’s real life John Henry, who is riding a two-year, nine-bout victory by knockout streak (including three in 2007), is in full agreement with trainer Loew.
“Nothing has changed except instead of challenging a great world champion, I’ll be fighting a fierce warrior who wants revenge. But my strategy will be the same and that’s to keep throwing a lot of punches,” said Pavlik. “I’m not going to do anything different from the first fight except correct the mistakes I made last time. This fight is for Youngstown and for fight fans around the world that enjoy action. I only fight one way, and that’s to win. It’s not complicated but it works.”
Pavlik (32-0, 29 KOs), from Youngstown, Ohio, and Taylor (27-1-1, 17 KOs), from Little Rock, Arkansas, boast a combined record of 59-1-1 (46 KOs) – a winning percentage approaching 97% and a victory by knockout ratio of 78%! Their first fight, on September 29, was not only hailed as the “Fight of the Year” but literally rejuvenated the sport internationally. It is a rivalry that is being compared to the great middleweights of previous eras, including Graziano-Zale, Robinson-Basilo-Fullmer, and Benvenuti-Griffith. The fight opened at -$160 Pavlik / +$140 Taylor at the MGM Grand sports book.
Tickets, priced at $600, $400, $300, $200, and $100, are on sale at the MGM Grand Garden Arena box office. Tickets will also be sold at all Las Vegas Ticketmaster locations (select Smith’s Food and Drug Centers, Macy’s West at the Fashion Show Mall, and Ritmo Latino.) Ticket sales are limited to eight (8) per person. To charge by phone with a major credit card, call Ticketmaster at (702) 474-4000 or MGM Grand at (800) 929-1111. Tickets are also available for purchase at www.mgmgrand.com or www.ticketmaster.com