WBO #13 super middleweight Aslambek “The Hulk” Idigov returned to action last Tuesday inside the Pyramid in Kazan, Russia, with a TKO 4 (0:01) over Russian veteran Konstantin “The Volga Cossack” Piternov.
Showing his trademark aggression and pinpoint accuracy, the abnormally strong Idigov wore down his normally durable countryman with sustained pressure. After a brutal three-round assault, Piternov elected not to come out for the fourth of their scheduled 10-rounder.
With the victory, Idigov is now 15-0, 7 KOs.
“Konstantin was a very experienced opponent. I was happy with my performance and look forward to a big 2019,” said a happy Idigov, post-fight. “This was my fourth fight since May of this year, after signing with Salita Promotions, to whom I am grateful for progressing my career.”
Idigov’s promoter, Dmitriy Salita, says 2019 will be “The Year of the Hulk.”
“Aslambek is getting better with each fight. He has scored three stoppages in his last four fights and all of them were impressive. Next year will be a big breakout year for him as an upcoming star in the super middleweight division.”
Kai Robin Havnaa (13-0, 11 KOs) will face his toughest career test against Rad ‘Thunder’ Rashid (16-4, 13 KOs) on March 2 at the SØR Amfi in Arendal.
‘King Kai’ is back at the SØR Amfi having blasted out Daniel Vencl inside two-rounds on February 3. A performance he followed with the show reel second-round stoppage of Frank Bluemle at the Baden Arena in Offenburg on April 28.
Havnaa must now face a significant step up as he looks to advance his promising career with a ten-round contest against the former WBU Cruiserweight Champion and WBO European Heavyweight title challenger.
“I will need to be in my greatest shape ever,” said Havnaa. “Rashid fought for the WBO European Heavyweight title in March, so I know he is going to be big, probably bigger than me, and I’ll have to be at my best to beat him.
“He’s a strong opponent. He’s experienced and looks solid. I’m expecting him to come with an 'all in' mentality, but with that said, you never know what you’re dealing until you start trading punches, so I’ll be prepared for everything."
Rashid, from Frankfurt, Germany, is known as 'Thunder' due to his punching power, which has seen him claim 13 of his 16 wins inside the distance.
"I’m not worried about his power, but I will be aware of it," says Havnaa. "When you’re a big cruiserweight, all punches are dangerous, but I trust my defence. I’ve been working on it a lot, and that’s why I've never been down in my fights."
Havnaa will once again be counting on his fans to turn the SØR Amfi into a hometown fortress, as the 29 year-old admits he feels unbeatable in Arendal.
"I have the feeling nothing can stop me now, especially not at the SØR Amfi!
"The support I got from people in the arena last time gave me more energy and power than I ever thought possible," he says. "I get motivated just thinking about it, and that’s priceless when you’re preparing for war. My win will be shared with everyone who's there supporting me on March 2!"
Promoter Nisse Sauerland says this fight marks the 'first big step up' for Havnaa, and will provide an important acid test for the Norwegian talent.
“Kai has done everything asked of him so far in his career," said Sauerland. "Since his professional debut, we've been gradually increasing the level of opposition, but this fight marks his first big step up. He will need to prove himself at this level if he wants to continue to progress. He has the talent and determination to go a long way, but now, he has to back it up in the ring!"
Kai Robin Havnaa vs. Rad 'Thunder' Rashid tops the bill at the SØR Amfi in Arendal on March 2 with a full supporting undercard to be announced shortly.
PHILADELPHIA, PA- -Christian Carto hopes to continue his rise through the bantamweight ranks when he headlines an eight-fight card Friday evening, Feb. 8, at the 2300 Arena.
Michelle Rosado, whose Raging Babe company makes its promotional debut in the Philadelphia market that night, has dubbed the Feb. 8 event the "Philly Special." If Carto keeps winning, Philly and more importantly South Philly will have something special on its hands.
Hall-of-Fame bantamweight Joltin' Jeff Chandler was the last world champion from South Philadelphia. He won the WBA world title in 1980 and held it until 1984 after nine successful title defenses.
The 22-year-old Carto enjoys a huge following from his South Philly backyard. He brings back memories of another Hall-of-Famer, Joey Giardello, who was the last great Italian fighter from South Philadelphia. Giardello boxed from 1948 to 1967, compiled a record of 98-26-8 with 31 knockouts and was the undisputed middleweight champion from 1963 to 1965.
Carto has a record of 17-0, 11 KOs, since turning pro midway through 2016. He comes from a family rich in boxing tradition. His grandfather and two uncles were pros: Nunzio Carto, Frankie Carto, Joe Carto. All three fought in the lighter weight divisions in the 1930s and 1940s and Frankie was world-rated at once time at 126 pounds.
"This is going to be a special night for me," Carto said. "It's only my second time fighting at the 2300 Arena as pro and I enjoy the atmosphere even when I'm just there to support other fighters. A big 'Thank You' to Michelle Rosado for including me on her first card in Philly."
Once he gets into the world rankings, Carto could remind South Philly fans of some of their best Italian boxers of days gone by: heavyweights Joe Grim (Saverio Giannone), Gus Dorazio and Dan Bucceroni; light-heavyweight Mike Rossman (Michael DePiano); welterweight Eddie Giosa; junior welterweight Tony Falco; featherweights Lew Massey (Louis Massucci) and Eddie Lenny (Edward Setaro); bantamweights Tommy Forte and Bobby Wolgast (Anthony Giordano); Hall-of-Fame flyweight champion Midget Wolgast (Joseph Robert Loscalzo).
"I look to forward to having a strong start to 2019 and continue building my career," Carto said. " My sponsors and my fans show unwavering support every fight and I am indebted to them. A lot of people are behind me and I want to make them proud not only of me, but also of South Philly boxing. There's been a lot of great fighters from South Philly and I hope to uphold that tradition."
Growing up in South Philly, Carto played hockey. He was small compared to the other kids his age, but it was on the ice that he began to exhibit the tenacity that would carry him through tough fights as a boxer. He never allowed his size to slow him down. In high school, Carto missed class trips, dances and social activities to pursue his boxing career, and the sacrifices paid off when he won the 2014 National Golden Gloves at 108 pounds in Las Vegas, NV.
In subsequent years. Carto moved up to 114 pounds and finished third in the 2015 National Golden Gloves and won a bronze at the U.S. Olympic Trials at that weight that same year.
"This show is for South Philly," said Michelle Rosado. "The 2300 Arena is in South Philly and it's headlined by Christian Carto, the hottest fighter to come out of South Philly in years. I look forward to getting him the recognition he deserves locally and nationally through this "Philly Special" card. He is the Philly Special!"
Tickets to "Philly Special" are priced $50, $75 and $125. They can be purchased online at www.2300arena.com or by calling 215-765-0922. Doors open at 6:30 pm and first bout is at 7:30 pm
Comosa AG, World Boxing Super Series organiser, has received the ‘Sports event of the year’ award by Riga City Council for the Ali Trophy semi-final between Aleksandr Usyk and Mairis Briedis in Latvia’s capital.
The event, the bout between Ukraine’s WBO Cruiserweight World champion and Latvia’s WBC Cruiserweight World champion, took place on January 27, 2018 in front of 10,000 fans at the Arena Riga. After an enthralling encounter Usyk won via a majority points decision.
Comosa AG accepted the ‘Sports event of the year’ award at Riga City Council.
“We are extremely proud to receive such a prestigious award,” said Kalle Sauerland, Comosa’s Chief Boxing Officer. “Usyk-Briedis had everything; supremely skillful athletes, non-stop excitement, bravery, pride and a full to capacity arena with some of the best boxing fans in the world.
“It was a magical night where the World Boxing Super Series and the Ali Trophy experience reached new heights. We are truly honoured by the recognition and reception from Riga City Council and chairman Nils Usakov.
“This award brings us well into 2019 after a fantastic year. We are now looking forward to next year’s sensational semi-final match-ups.”
In the build-up to the Usyk-Briedis fight fans had turned up in record numbers for the public workout with people showing equal appreciation for both fighters.
"I appreciate the love and the warm welcome I got from the people of Riga,” Aleksandr Usyk said. “Their support is endless and I feel gratitude for this. Riga is a true fight city and I will always keep it in my heart.”
After Riga, Usyk went on to win the final against Russia’s Murat Gassiev and become king of the division.
“I am thankful for the World Boxing Super Series for manifesting an unbelievable series of events from a grandiose idea that ultimately leads me to become the undisputed cruiserweight world champion as well as the owner of the first-ever Muhammad Ali Trophy.”
Mairis Briedis, the first Latvian to win a boxing world title, might have lost the extremely close fight, but he is still on the quest for ‘the biggest prize in boxing’.
“It was amazing to be part of one of the biggest events in sport taking place in Riga,” said Briedis who has also reached the semi-final of Season 2 of the World Boxing Super Series. “The support in the arena was unbelievable, but of course the outcome was not what I hoped for, so I am really happy that I have a chance to do better this season and hopefully I will be able to bring the Muhammad Ali Trophy to Latvia.”
Dates and venues for the semi-finals of Season II of the World Boxing Super Series will be announced in early 2019.