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Boxing News: Adamek-Gomez, Hatton vs Lazcano, Pacquiao-Diaz

IBF #1 ranked mandatory challenger Tomasz Adamek will return to the Windy City on July 11 when he headlines an exciting fight card at the Aragon Ballroom against veteran brawler Gary Gomez, it was jointly announced today by Main Events CEO Kathy Duva and 8 Count Productions President Dominic Pesoli. ESPN2’s “Friday Night Fights” broadcast begins at 9:00 pm ET/8:00 pm CT.

“It was very important to Tomasz to fight once more prior to his showdown against Steve Cunningham,” said Duva. “What better place for him to fight than in Chicago where he was warmly welcomed by his Polish brethren the last two times he fought here?.”

“We’re very happy to once again work with Kathy Duva and the Main Events team to co-promote this event,” said Pesoli. “Chicago fight fans will be thrilled to see former world champion Tomasz Adamek once again after his two ‘Fight of the Year’ wars he won over Paul Briggs in the last few years in Chicago.”

Adamek (34-1, 23 KO’s) earned the IBF’s #1 mandatory position in his last bout on April 19, 2008, when he schooled former undisputed world cruiserweight champion O’ Neal Bell for seven rounds before forcing Bell to retire on his stool prior to round eight (TKO 7). The 31-year-old Zywiec, Poland native has stopped 15 opponents within the first three rounds. He captured the vacant WBC light heavyweight championship on May 21, 2005, when he decisioned Paul Briggs (W 12). He defended the title twice before losing to Chad Dawson on Feb 3, 2007 (L 12). Since moving to cruiserweight he is 3-0, 2 KOs.

Gomez (18-9, 7 KO’s) lost a split decision to Jeremy Williams in his last bout on August 18, 2007, (L 8). Prior to the bout the 33-year-old Salt Lake City, UT native had gone 4-1-1 in his last six bouts. On July 21, 2005, Gomez lost a decision to Charles Davis in an unsuccessful attempt to win WBC Continental Americas cruiserweight championship (L 10). Gomez has never been stopped in his career.

Popular Polish middleweight Andrzej Fonfara, who now resides in Chicago, will compete in the eight round televised co-feature bout against an opponent to be determined shortly. Fonfara is 10-1, 3 KO’s.

Pac In Chicago

Boxing superstar MANNY PACQUIAO jets to Chicago, Illinois, on Tuesday night in preparation for a full media day on Wednesday, May 21st which includes a Public Pep Rally at 12Noon at Federal Plaza, 230 S. Dearborn (corner of Adams and Dearborn) to promote his showdown with World Boxing Council champion DAVID DIAZ set for June 28th at Mandalay Bay Resort and Casino in Las Vegas, Nevada..

“I am looking forward to my first visit to The Windy City and meeting Chicago’s great boxing fans — both Hispanic and Filipino,” said Manny Pacquiao. “Chicago has a lot to be proud of in its world champion David Diaz. I just hope Chicago doesn’t think of me as an ill-mannered guest when I go after David and his title with everything I have on June 28th.”

World Boxing Council Lightweight Champion DAVID DIAZ took a quick breather from training this afternoon to tape an appearance for Telemundo’s Titulares Y Mas with host MIRELLA GRISALES for airing tonight..

After his training finished at Chicago’s JABB Boxing Gym, Diaz discussed his upcoming fight on June 28th against boxing superstar MANNY PACQUIAO with Grisales while also demonstrating a couple of boxing techniques for the Columbian model.

Diaz will play host to Pacquiao on Wednesday afternoon, May 21st at a Public Pep Rally in Downtown Chicago at Federal Plaza, 230 S. Dearborn at 12Noon. “Titulares Y Mas” is broadcast on Telemundo at 11:30 EST and PST, and 10:30 CST.

Lazcano Trainer Predicts Hatton Downfall

The position of trainer in the sport of boxing is perhaps the most crucial piece of the puzzle when it comes to putting together a successful fighter. The best trainers command a great deal of respect for their unique abilities to raise the performance levels of their boxers and as a result, are in high demand the world over..

Ronnie Shields, a former two-time world light welterweight title challenger himself, is one of these rare birds, training or having trained such current or recent champions as Juan Diaz, Vernon Forrest, Mike Tyson, Evander Holyfield, Kassim Ouma, Jesse James Leija and Jesus Chavez among others.

This week, the Houston, Texas native is in Manchester, England, bringing light welterweight contender Juan Lazcano, 37-4-1 (27), in tow for a challenge against IBO/Ring Champion Ricky Hatton, 43-1 (31), in front of 55,000 fans at City of Manchester Stadium this Saturday.

“I’m here in England to train Juan Lazcano for his fight with Ricky Hatton and make no mistake, we have come here to win,” said Shields flatly.

Hatton is returning to fight in the UK for the first time since 2005 after a four bout American tour came to a close when “The Hitman” was leveled by pound for pound king of the sport, Floyd Mayweather, last December.

While Mayweather mastered the defensive approach to dealing with Hatton’s attacking style, Shields doesn’t envision his fighter trying to take a page from the same playbook.

“Juan is a completely different fighter than Floyd Mayweather, so we can’t really follow Mayweather’s fight plan against Ricky,” said Shields. “But Juan is a top class fighter, one of the best junior welters in the world and we’re going to surprise Ricky Hatton and beat him.”

Hatton is as well known for his grueling regimen while preparing for fights as he is for his lack of that discipline between contests and Lazcano’s trainer thinks that the toll of such will be Hatton’s downfall.

“He lives a very bad lifestyle for a fighter,” said Shields. “Anyone who goes out and drinks the way he does, it has to take an effect. Personally, I think it started taking an effect in the Floyd Mayweather fight. Floyd Mayweather isn’t a big puncher, yet Floyd knocked Ricky out. As could be seen, round and round after round, Hatton got more and more tired and that’s for the simple reason that his lifestyle is starting to take an effect on him.

“Just watching the fight, I could see this happening round after round, and after about the sixth round, I thought that Floyd had the chance to knock Ricky out because Floyd hurt him with a couple of those check hooks. Gaining all that weight, losing all that weight and then gaining it all back again, that takes a hell of a toll on your body, I don’t care who you are.”

Despite the long odds his fighter must overcome to defeat Hatton in front of a British record-breaking amount of highly partisan hometown fans, Ronnie Shields remains unshaken in his Saturday night prediction.

“Juan Lazcano is going to push Ricky all the way through those twelve rounds,” he said. “We’re going to make him fight for 12 rounds, so there’s no excuses, no nothing; I’ve been hearing something about how he’s been sick, but if you’re sick, don’t get in the ring because then you’ve got an excuse. But if you do jump in that ring, then you have no excuses.

“When Juan beats Ricky, we don’t want to hear anything except for his team to say that Juan Lazcano was the best fighter that night.”

Saturday, May 24, 2008 will feature the biggest selling fight in the history of British boxing, IBO/Ring light welterweight champion Ricky Hatton vs. Juan Lazcano, in front of 55,000 fans at City of Manchester Stadium in Manchester, England on a shared production between Frank Maloney Promotions, Punch Promotions and Golden Boy Promotions.

Chief support features IBF light welter champion Paulie Malignaggi, 24-1 (5), vs. former titlist Lovemore N’dou, 46-9-1 (31), and Commonwealth welterweight champion Craig Watson, 12-2 (4), defending against Matthew Hatton, 33-3-1 (13).

Two other championship fights will be featured with English light middleweight title bout between the champion Andrew Facey, 19-5-1 (6), going against Manchester’s Thomas McDonagh, 31-1-2 (6), and Liverpool’s Mark Moran, 9-0-1 (2), squaring off with Danny Wallace, 12-4-1 (6), for the vacant English super bantamweight title.

Two-time British light middleweight champion Jamie Moore, 28-3 (19), also sees action on the card, facing Esau Herrera,14-3-1 (6), of Mexico City in an eight rounder.

Any remaining tickets to Hatton vs. Lazcano can be purchased on , , and .

Doors open at 5:00PM with the first fight at 5:30PM. Sky Box Office will televise live commencing at 7:30PM.

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